My favorites from the Wonderland family shoot. For the making of the queen’s costume, see this post.
Wonderland by Kindra Keitel
What a beautiful family!
Mad hatter: hat, accessories and photo by me.
Alice: dress by Good Merritt Taylor. Apron, accessories and photo by me.
Queen of Hearts: makeup by Alex Barraza. Corset is the subject’s; all other accessories, costuming, and photo by me.

To the ones that love me:

You keep me going.

When my little world is very dark, you make the shadows thinner. And then you show me just how un-little my world truly is.

You make me want to keep going. You make me want to pick up another pen or camera or brush, you make me want to sing. Do you know how important you are to me? How much of you is in everything I create? You are the brushstrokes, the words, and the melody.

I may never be recognized, I may never be published, I may never be more than what I am today. And it’s a fact that I will never be the best at anything I do. But I am the best at being me. Thank you for thinking that’s enough. Thank you for believing in me. You are treasure unparalleled.

And I am a rich woman.

fine art, conceptual, book cover, romantic

By Choice,” a piece about self-imposed limitations.
Model wishes to remain anonymous. Photography and post-production by me.

Magic Morning by Kindra Keitel
I waited for months on the perfect morning to photograph this tree. It’s beautiful on its own but with the fog, it was magic.

It was yours. But

You didn’t know how the cottonwoods sounded like the ocean when the wind blew through their leaves
Or how hay turned to crystal once covered in ice.
You didn’t know each bend in the river like we did
Or count the trees alongside it.

You didn’t spend summer nights memorizing the sky
Or autumn mornings gathering berries
Or spring days counting puddles.

You never sang with the wind on a winter’s night.

Yet, somehow, it was yours and not ours.

Until it wasn’t yours, either.

And we,
Who had bled into the earth
Who had tasted the rain
Who had listened to the trees
Were abandoned to the rest.

The rest we didn’t know,
The rest without history.

And yet
Somehow
Now it belongs only to us.
Forever ours
As it could never
Be yours.

Faded Fancy Vintage is open for business! We use so many vintage things in our shoots that we just can’t hang on to them all. So, we’re selling some of the jewelry and clothing we don’t need anymore over on Etsy. Take a look around, if you’re so inclined! Click on the pic to visit our shop, FadedFancyVintage.

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She loved movies.

It was what we did- movies. Seventy-five percent of our family vernacular was made up of movie quotes (“A poodle. A noodle. A doodle.” or “Where’s the Tylenol?”) and I think all of our inside jokes were actually just lines from Coen brothers films. (“Turn to the right. Turn to the right.” and “We thought. you was. a toad.”).

I always just kinda thought Mom loved movies so much because she liked to escape her ordinary-mundane-run-of-the-mill life. But then I really stopped to think about the movies she loved. They weren’t sci-fi, they weren’t fairy tales, fantasies or horror. They were just stories about people who seemed real. People I might think of as having ordinary-mundane-run-of-the-mill lives. And if there were fantastical parts within, well, those were the minutes she went to the kitchen to refill her tea.

So, when I think about it now, it wasn’t that Mom wanted to escape the life she had, it’s that she loved seeing it celebrated for everything it was, for everything each human life is. That life is comedy, tragedy, and everything in between. That it’s happiness, loss, victory and failure. That it’s loving and that it’s leaving, too. The highest highs, the lowest lows and the special in-betweens. All the same elements that make a good film.

I don’t think of the end credits as having been run for Mom yet. Her movie is still playing in the laugh lines near my father’s eyes, in my brother’s kind heart, in my love of stories. In the features of her family and the memories of her friends.

Mom remains the star in a story that’s still being written.

I found these one day when I went thru an old folder of art projects. It would seem I had a rather sketchy past…
Yeah, I went there.
sketchy

An excerpt from my current WIP and a song it inspired:

“We neared the edge of the forest and Father frowned toward the house, which drooped and sagged from the tug of the earth. My brothers had left it unattended and unpolished, all of its secrets exposed to the sun though they were designed for nothing but shadow. He glanced at Albert, who trudged along in tall grasses, his view of the house obscured.

Father slowed his gait and started to sing:

Shadows

Shadows hide
Below the floor.
Hide just like
You’ve done before.

Screaming scheming
Shadows dear.
Hidden now
But ever near.

He repeated the verses until Albert learned the words and joined in. Ribbons of song, the edges sharp and black, cut through the air and touched the roof of the house. When the music landed, it melted and ran, burnishing charred slate shingles to gleaming copper as it dripped down.”

I hate saying goodbye to Christmas. It seems that it gets harder every year. Isn’t it supposed to be easier when you grow up? I guess this girl didn’t get the memo. Before bidding farewell to Christmas 2013, I thought I’d revisit some memories from Christmas past. Many are the memories that remain the most colorful, the shiniest, the most vivid, even after all these years.

Growing up out in the boonies, Dad always chopped down our Christmas trees himself, pretty little cedars that smelled so, so good. Decorating was a family affair, from the time us kids were able to throw something at the scratchy branches.
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Haha, check out this retro Santa from my brother’s first Christmas!
christmas1
Then, of course, there were the presents! I totally remember these striped footy pajamas and brother tells me he remembers getting this toy combine. He wonders what happened to it- I told him he probably buried it in the yard, as he was wont to do with his toys. Boys are so weird…
Christmas toys
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Christmas always was and always will be special simply because in my life there is no other day more worthy of celebration.

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