Author: hope

5 Ways To Deal With Being Left Out

Summer is here which means cookouts, pool parties, and nights that we wish would never end. (Insert every song every written about summer with that line.) But it’s not what you hoped it would be. You find yourself feeling left out of these big events. People that you thought were your friends didn’t send you that text or phone call. You’re scrolling on social media, and see the photos. You immediately have this sinking feeling in your gut.

And before you know it, you are binge watching Netflix movies with a pint of Halo Top wondering, “What’s wrong with me?” “Why didn’t they think to call or text me.” “I thought we were all friends.”

How did I describe you so perfectly? Friend. I have been there before. It hurts being the one who’s left out. It hurts sitting there, wondering why they did it. So let me help you get out of this funk. By the end of this blog post, I hope you feeling inspired & encouraged.

Stop feeling sorry for yourself.

Yep. I went there with a truth bomb on the first one. Sitting in your room saying, “Woe is me” isn’t going to make you feel any better. (Trust me, I’ve learned.)  Instead, let yourself feel what you need to feel about the situation.(Cry, write in your journal, confide in your parents or siblings, confide in a close friend, listen to music, etc.) Once you get those feelings out you will feel lighter.

Get Out of The House

This may seem super simple right? But forcing yourself to dress up, put make-up on, and just get out of the house will leave you feeling refreshed. Even if you have no where to go, just get dolled up, and go take a drive.

Make Time For A New Relationship

If this is a friend group who has repeatedly left you out, then it’s time for a relationship change. Call or text that person whom you haven’t seen or spoken too in a while, but they’ve been on your mind. See if they would like to go out for coffee, & chat. Join a club. Join a gym or take workout classes. There’s so many ways to meet new people. You will find the community you are meant to be with.

Posted in Photography

Pilot Mountain Anniversary Mini-Session

Two weeks ago I photographed my wonderful friends anniversary session on Pilot Mountain(This is one of my favorite locations, so you may see it alot of this year!). I have known Bethany for a few of years now due to my day job. I remember when she first met Austin, & how excited she was.

She would come in to work smiling, and being all giggly. When they got engaged, I remember her smile growing even brighter & bigger. When I received the wedding invitation, I was elated! I love weddings, and when it’s my friends. Holy. Moly! Cue all the smiles, & water works! (Yes, weddings really do make me that happy.)

I remember sitting out in the pew on the day of her wedding, anticipating the moment she would come down the aisle. Listening to the beautiful music being played by one of my LHP seniors on the piano. Watching the little flower girls throwing petals in their beautiful, white & gold sparkly dresses. Then the bridesmaids, who seemed to glide down the aisle, in those gold sequin dresses & beautiful pink bouquets.

Then everything just stopped. Silence. The door swung open. Everyone was peering around each other trying to sneak a peek at the bride. The music started once more. Here came the bride, side by side with her dad. Her beautiful lace covered wedding dress just all around her with each step. In that moment, I’m pretty sure I saw Austin shedding tears at the altar.

Now, they have been married for 1 year. (*Cue the confetti!*)

Bethany and Austin, I pray for nothing, but happiness for you both. You have a deeply rooted faith & you keep each other grounded. Always remember that as long as you keep Christ in the center of your relationship, you can make it through anything. I’m so blessed to know you. Happy one year! Cheers to many, many, many more years of memories together.

Posted in lifestyle, Photography

Bright & Airy Cody Creek Senior Session

Alex is just the way she appears in the images below. Bright, and full of sunshine. She’s such a sweetheart to work with, & you can’t help, but smile. I made a pit stop, before her senior session, by the place she loves, & works at. Chick-fil-a of Mt. Airy. It was so hot & humid we needed a cool drink to start our session off with! You wouldn’t be able to tell, but about an hour before I made the pit stop, the sky darkened, and the bottom fell out(if you’re unfamiliar with that saying, it just means it rained really hard!).

Are you sensing a theme with every session I’ve done so far? The NC weather doesn’t want to cooperate with me. Even though rain threatened us the whole time, we had some amazing sunshine too. As our session started, she quickly became comfortable with my direction, & could rock a smize like nobody’s business! Pretty soon, “the smize”, became her signature in her images.

Alex you and your mom were so fun to work with! Your enthusiasm, and smile are contagious! You are such a joy to everyone around you, and you can light up a room just by walking in. I pray you get into your first chosen college, Appalachian State, and you get to pursue your dream! Never lose that spark, and smile sweet girl.


Posted in Photography, Senior Photography

Pilot Mountain State Park Senior Session

As I started driving towards Pilot Mountain I noticed a dark cloud. I kept driving, the sky grew darker, and rain had set in. I was getting nervous, because this cloud seemed to appear out of nowhere. Threatening our senior session that was just about to take place. I drove up the winding road to the top, and pulled into a parking space. As quickly as the storm popped up, all of a sudden it disappeared. Revealing a beautiful blue sky, with giant white fluffy clouds, and the most beautiful golden sunshine. It had managed to cool off a few degrees, and we had this amazing Beyonce wind to top it off!

You may remember seeing Trinity in previous posts. She is the LHP Spokes-Model for 2019!

Trinity pulled into her parking space not long after me. We both jumped out, and ran to hug each other. Then we planned her the final details of her outfits. She plays basketball for the Lady Patriots so she incorporated her team jersey for one outfit. We chose sneakers to wear with her dress, because that is so Trinity. She loves to dress up & be comfortable.

As we walked to each location, we chatted about life & everything in between. There were many times we would burst into fits of laughter during the session. Like when we were shooting next to tall grass & something moved. I was tempted to run. So was she. I may or may not have even, almost, face planted on the rock ledge. Almost. Twice. 

As we were nearing the end of our session we took a moment. We sat on the ledge that over looks the rolling green hills of Pilot. We sat, talked some more, and took in the view. This is a session I won’t soon forget.

Trinity, as you are reading this blog post, I wish you nothing, but all the happiness in the world. Your joy is not only felt by those who are close to you, but by those you encounter daily. You are such a hard worker, and it shows. Your basketball team is headed to the All-Star games this weekend, & that’s amazing! You are doing wonderful in school, & pursing your calling into nursing. They are going to need a kind soul like you. I cannot wait to see what the future holds for you sweet girl

Oh, and one more thing. Happy Early Birthday!

Posted in Photography, Senior Photography

Fisher River Park Senior & Engagement Session

Mark came riding into Fisher River Park on his deep blue Harley Davidson Motorcycle, and that’s when I knew. We are going to have fun. I helped Mark, and his mom plan for his senior session a couple of weeks earlier. Mark had 2 requests, he wanted to bring his custom Harley, & the second being an engagement session with his fiance, Eliza. Yes. You read that right. Fiance. These high school sweethearts have been engaged for almost 3 months. I couldn’t help, but squeal with delight at the last request! Insert all the heart eye emojis here.

As we started down towards the  green open fields, with a beautiful flowing river behind it, we spent this time chatting. It turns out, Eliza’s best friend is Courtney, whom I had recently done a prom session for.  She’s even going to be her maid of honor for her wedding. How amazing is that?

Once we were down by the river I couldn’t help, but notice that Mark’s smile grew ten times wider when Eliza was in the images.  It was the sweetest thing.  When they would look at each other, it was like I wasn’t even there. As if they were the only two people in the park. That’s a connection most people crave. There was even a moment when I asked Mark to tell her an inside joke, or something funny. And, it resulted in the moment you see below.

Mark, I wish you all the best with your goals, and dreams. You have such a bright future ahead of you!  Eliza, you are so beautiful, kind, and incredibly smart. I know that you will go far, and cannot wait to see where you go. To the both of you, I pray for nothing, but joy, and a long, happy future for you.

I hope you enjoy looking at these images as much as I do!

Posted in Photography

How To Work From A Place of Rest

Hi friends! Recently, on top of battling severe acid reflux(which is now under control, thank God for that!), I have been battling panic attacks, and severe anxiety. I feel like this topic has been placed on my heart to write about for a reason, and that reason is you’re probably struggling with this too. Am I right?  You’re working those late nights after you get off your day job, hustling, and trying to make that big dream of yours come true.

I get it, I am right there with you, but are you letting fear fuel your need for the hustle? Are you working from a place of fear? The fear that, “I’ve fallen behind. I need to X to be successful, or they’re doing Y so I need to do this too to be successful.” So instead of working with purpose on YOUR vision, you’re working from a place of fear.

You start thinking that your version of success isn’t good enough.Or even worse you start thinking that you are not enough.  I am here to tell you it is, and YOU are enough! You don’t have to be the “next big thing”, or “the next industry leader”.  I’ll even let you in on a secret: those who are the biggest YouTubers, or industry leaders didn’t actually aspire to be those things, they simply found a passion for what they did, worked hard, and the rest followed. They didn’t allow themselves to stay in that place of fear, instead pushed forward despite the fear, and worked on their vision.

Once you do that, you begin to work from that place of rest. You still may have to work late nights, but you feel satisfied, fulfilled, and purposeful. You’re not taking on someone else’s vision for business, and life. You’re taking on the vision that God has given YOU.

So let me ask you: What does YOUR definition of success look like? What would working from a place of rest instead of fear look like for you? (Take a few moments to think about this)

Posted in Photography

Sweet Doughnut Themed Picnic Styled Shoot

This styled shoot had started out being, “A Sweet Rose Gold Dream”, but ended up being “A Sweet Doughnut Themed Picnic”. These doughnuts were delicious, and from the sweetest little bakery in town called, “Anchored– Sweet Treats & Savory Eats”. Samantha(the owner) was so sweet, and accommodating!

We had a little bit of a struggle the day of the shoot, with the wind trying to blow over everything, but we managed to make it through without losing any doughnuts! I’d call that a win! I hope you enjoy this session!

Posted in Photography

Quarry Park Golden Hour Session

I was so excited when Catherine had first made contact with me on Instagram. I know that she wants to be a model, and this girl definitely has the look to be one! (Someone tell me when high school students started looking like this?? I’m 100% sure I looked like a potato all during my high school career) As we began planning the details of her session out, we decided to have it at Quarry Park in Winston-Salem.

I had heard about this location, and was eager to shoot on the bridge that over looks the city. We got there just in time for the most beautiful golden hour light. I hope that you enjoy these images from Catherine’s session!


Posted in Photography

Reynolda Gardens and Village Portrait Session

Reynolda Gardens & Village is one of my favorite places to photograph sessions at! I recently collaborated with Dovers Photos on this spring inspired session,and realized I hadn’t had a chance to blog this one yet! We had the whole place to ourselves, which is highly unusual for this part of Winston-Salem, but the wind decided to pick up quite a lot that day making it a whole lot colder than it was suppose to be. When the wind wasn’t blowing the sunshine gave way to warmth for us, and the flowers had just begun to bud in the garden so we took full advantage of that!

These girls were already friends before hand, so you can imagine all the stories, and jokes that were being told during our session time. I had so much on this shoot, and I hope you enjoy meeting each one of these lovely ladies.

Jordan is absolutely adorable, and she is a twin! The sweet girl, Julia, that I collaborated with, is actually her twin.  How amazing is that? I use to wish I could’ve been a twin(thank you to the “It Takes Two’ movie for that!).

Amber is such a hard worker, this girl dances full time. She goes to two different studios, and it has paid off, because she has been accepted in to the UNC-G Dance Program! You go girl!

Lilly is so beautiful, this girl could definitely be a model. Her red hair is just the most amazing thing! She is currently attending classes at Surry Community, and does a little bit of theater on the side too.

Erica is so cute, and has the sweetest personality! She actually had been following my Instagram account for a while, so it was so nice to actually meet in person, and work with her.

We all spent the rest of the afternoon making our way around the entire village.

Posted in Photography, Senior Photography

How To Plan For Your Senior Session

Your senior session is the one thing you look forward to for your senior year. So, how do you plan for your senior session? When do you start planning?  It’s my job to eliminate as much stress as possible for my clients, and senior photography is so much fun. I found the passion for photographing senior sessions when one of my very first seniors came to her session with her basketball uniform, her Ukulele, and 2nd outfit of choice. The whole session was tons of fun, and I loved showcasing her unique personality.  There are so many ways that you can make your session the best experience possible. Below you will find tips for hair, make-up, wardrobe styling, and more! Enjoy!

Choosing Your Outfits

It’s easy to look on Pinterest or Instagram, and compare your personal style, or try to change it. Don’t do that! Be authentic to your personality, and choose pieces that flatter your body.

Be Comfortable

If you try wearing an outfit that is fitted, but you don’t like how it looks, don’t wear it! Chances of you loving it when you see the images are very low. A good rule of thumb is, if it makes you uncomfortable, or self-conscious leave it at home! We will be doing a lot of walking around, sitting, and kneeling during the session, so if you do want to wear heels make sure you wear flats until we are ready to start shooting.

Brighten It Up

I do see a lot of people come to their sessions wearing the standard black & white. If that’s your style, and authentic to you then wear that, but make sure to add pops of color to brighten it up. Wearing just black or white without any pop can make skin tones look washed out on camera. Try wear colors that compliment your skin tone, and hair color. Below you’ll see Sarah paired her dark caprices with a beautiful magenta colored top, and light denim jacket. Karli chose orange which not only flatters her skin tone, and hair, but orange makes blue eyes pop.

Layer Up

During the cooler months spring & fall, add layers to your outfit. A duster cardigans is my favorite go to when adding layers. During the winter months you can always pair outfits with a cute denim or leather jacket to add some dimension. During the summer you can add layers with a cropped, thin cardigan. KayMarie’s outfits are my favorite example of layering for both cool, and warmer weather. For her first outfit she paired her denim shirt with a bright red cardigan, and added a light brown hat. For her second outfit, she pair her black sleeveless top with this beautiful thin laced cardigan.


Posted in Photography, Senior Photography