Thanks for stopping by. Check in every so often to see recent photography sessions, weddings, and family fun. I also post little tidbits about my life and work so you can get to know me a little better. Take a peek, enjoy, and let me know what you think!
I think the Little Family were the first folks we met when we moved to Pollock Pines in 2000. Bob and my husband Jeff have worked together as foresters since then. If am not mistaken, at that time Jack was an infant, my daughter Jaz, just a future thought, and Kim was driving school buses for the district while studying for her masters. I could have gotten the timeline completely wrong, which sadly, wouldn’t surprise me at all.
I love when I get the opportunity to photograph the Littles, who, by the way, aren’t so little anymore. Well, Bob and Kim, yes, but Jack and Macy? Fast forward 14 years: Jack is a freshman at El Dorado High, Macy is a fourth grader, and Kim, the new principal for Sierra Ridge Middle School. Jeff and Bob? Still talking forestry, of course. Where does the time go?
On a beautiful day in Apple Hill, we headed off to find “the light” sparkling though the reds and yellows of fall. What we got was warm, late-afternoon light, which shifted to a soft fog that rolled in and made us feel like we were on the coast–you know, that genuine Camino coastal weather. This planted a seed for the Littles’ next family shoot, because, who doesn’t like the beach? Making memories.
Speaking of “planting a seed,” Kim and I have become so knowledgeable about forestry due to our years of association, that we once came up with a radio show concept similar to Car Talk –poking fun at our husbands’ dialogue–only instead of Click and Clack we’d be something like “Sapling and Second Growth” or “Bark Beetle and Basal Area” or even “Conifer and Canopy,” filling your brain on NPR every Sunday morning with fascinating facts about forestry.
Little Family sessions are always fun and generally a bit goofy too: images strewn with photobombs and the like (have you met Bob?) and then of course Kim’s sarcastic wit sprinkled in. They are a little crazy too. I like it this way, though it always leaves you as photographer wondering what you’ve got and–did you really get it?
The Littles always deliver. As we were finishing up, Kim mentioned to me that capturing her family in photographs was so important because, unlike her mother, who photographed Kim plenty, Kim wanted her kids to have memories of the whole family together, to “get in the picture” herself. As parents we sometimes find ourselves doing it just like we were raised, hearing ourselves sounding like our parents and then at other times finding those little pieces that we can change to make it better for our kids. Changes that will no doubt be remembered, …until our kids decide to change that for their kids… to make it better, of course.
Thanks to my husband Jeff for assisting on this one. He was well behaved this time.
For fun, here is their Squaw shoot from a few years ago, and a little historical snippet, below.
These images make me smile. I’ve known these two for over 10 years. Our kids were in daycare together from the beginning. During one of my recent mentoring sessions I needed a couple models for some out in the field shooting, so I asked them. I knew they would be perfect. Love these two -warm hearts and a great sister connection! I’d love to photograph your children this holiday season. I’m going to head out this week to capture my children though, somehow, I don’t think it will be as easy:) It never is with your own.
With canyon view backdrop and accompanied by both a string quartet and family members’ acoustic harmony, Kristin and Jason were married recently in Kristin’s own backyard, the beautiful home of her parents, Richard and Karen, in Placerville.
It was a magical day full of joyful people, not least the groom himself, a playful, charismatic who originally hails from New Jersey. Jason and Kristin just love to laugh and they brought everyone along with them, (including two photographers and an assistant) and their wedding party which included Jason’s brother and Kristin’s two close cousins.
It’s also wonderful to connect personally with the families I meet; somehow my work seems to attract like-minded people who I get to share great stories with and that, in turn, makes the day so much more relaxed and smooth-sailing for everyone. Kristin’s parents are avid travelers and during conversation we discovered we had both just returned from big trips – Karen and Richard from India and my husband and I from Thailand. I loved hearing about their trip and sharing anecdotes from mine.
After the lovely ceremony, there was dancing – lots of it! Let the celebration begin. Jason and Kristin started the party with their first dance and then invited everyone to let their hair down for a while. The finale was a surprise sparkler send-off in a limo that whisked the happy couple away to their honeymoon in Hawaii.
This was such a fun wedding to be a part of with every detail attended to. The location was breathtaking, the flowers and styling by Dottie from Camino Flower Shop gorgeous, the food by Beth Sogaard Catering out of this world(again) and the family and guests- warm, supportive and welcoming. Thank you to Christina Petanovich from Obsessed Events for a super smooth day and to my friend David Hough for your always great tunes. AND thank you Kristin and Jason, for taking such great care of us and for choosing us to capture this first day on your journey as husband and wife. I wish you much love, joy and continued laughter.
For more of this lovely couple from earlier in the year, check out their engagement session.
2nd Photographer: Vanessa Wagener | Assistant: Riley Weinhold | Venue: Private residence | Event Coordinator: Christina Petanovich, Obsessed Events | Catering: Beth Sogaard Catering | Music: Dave Hough | Makeup Artist: Shelly Creech | Hair Stylist: Canvas | Florist: Camino Flower Shop | Cake Artist: Freeport Bakery |
Images below by Vanessa Wagener
Image bottom left by Vanessa Wagener
Image right by Vanessa Wagener
love this one! by Vanessa Wagener!
This one too! by Vanessa Wagener
details by Vanessa Wagener
Images below by Vanessa Wagener
Image below by Vanessa Wagener
Center and right by Vanessa Wagener
Image left by Vanessa Wagener
As you might have remembered, Casey Moreland came in to this world with a bang, stunning her mama whose labor progressed from just getting started to delivery in about 30 minutes.
Casey continues to capture my heart, as does her family who are warm, loving and engaged. Photographing Newborn Lifestyle sessions are quickly becoming a passion of mine because of the story I get to tell of a baby’s first days in their new home. Baby is relaxed and the family is connected because, well, home is where the heart is.
Can’t wait to meet up with The Moreland Family in 6 months. Those deep, warm brown eyes and flashy smile are such a treat!
9.20.14: the wedding day of Jamie and Roman, and the infamous King Fire started just one week before. If you were getting married that weekend in the Pollock Pines area, you weren’t really sure where your wedding would be. After several days of thick smoke-filled skies, a bit of blue emerged through the billows for Jamie and Roman’s wedding at Sierra Banquet Center.
Although the King Fire had pushed northeast settling our nerves down a bit locally, everyone’s knee-jerk reaction was to look up when they heard planes flying overhead to see what kind of aircraft it was; a jet dropping fire retardant, a helicopter with a water bucket, or a rescue helicopter. During the toasts, between references to baseball team rivalries, this exact thing happened. Of course, it was partly because no one could hear themselves over the drum of the engines, but also, as a community we were all on high alert, ready for the fire to blow back towards us. Jamie and Roman were even spotlighted that night on Channel 13 news in a segment that ran as “Life after the Fire.”
This could sound like a tense day, but if you like to laugh and have fun, you’d love Jamie and Roman and their friends. A large wedding party, and a whole passel of friends braved the prospect of the fire (in full force not all that far away) to help the bride and groom celebrate in style. Jamie was walked down the aisle by her two brothers, Matt and David. Sunflowers are her favorite flowers and they were prominent in her bouquets, exquisitely crafted by Camino Flower Shop.
Jamie’s twin sister, Julie (whose anniversary is the same day) and husband Brian were actually clients of mine for their wedding back in 2008. McKenna, Jamie and Roman’s son, loved dancing and ruled the dance floor. A spontaneous “rain dance” yielded a few drops from the evening sky as the celebration was winding down and who knows? Maybe it helped bring the heavy downpours later in the week for which we are all so grateful.