2016 was… strange in a way. I made all kinds of goals as usual, but the unspoken one was to have a baby. (Am I superstitious? Perhaps.) Then I got pregnant and all of those other goals fell by the wayside. I bet there’s a fundamental truth about parenthood there.
I photographed 15 weddings and a bunch of portraits. I photographed my own family in different ways, from my own pregnancy and my sister giving birth to my grandmother’s end of life family portraits (which… she’s still alive! But I’m very glad we did this.) Spoke at NBCCD for the fourth straight year. Did a bunch of travelling, from Iceland with my photographer squad (with Toronto stopover bookends) to Boston for baseball and Beyoncé to doing PEI tip-to-tip over three weekends. (I’m still not finishing editing my Iceland photos. Oops.)
Spent the last ever summer at my family’s cottage (bittersweet) but enjoyed our first ever summer in our own backyard (learned about yard work). Struggled with not being able to move in my body the way I’m used to doing. Had our first house guest, baked a pie, enjoyed our baby shower, and finally welcomed our tiny perfect person. (Which, I left her out of this because otherwise it would have been all photos of her. ;))
I had a really nice year, and once again I want to shout out all of my clients for being wonderful. Like I said before, the first draft of this post had 350 images. I whittled it down to 76. I love them for different reasons, but if there’s one theme that comes across, I hope it’s the joy of this life.
Continue reading Best of 2016 | Awesome Wedding + Portrait Photography
Happy International Women’s Day! This seems like the perfect day to introduce the latest collaborative photography project in which I’m participating: Show Me What Democracy Looks Like. The world feels a lot different from just last year when I was in Iceland with my people, and one of the ways we’re processing that is — obviously — through photography. Join us.
I’m pretty proud of myself for managing to write two blog posts in February; it may not seem like much but some days it takes me 3 hours to finish writing a single email to a soundtrack of screaming. I showed off the embiggening of my body in the traditional Behind the Scenes post and the embiggening of my heart with the ode to my daughter. I even started drafting a third post, my Best of 2016, but when I was finished downloading photos for that post I found that I’d chosen 350. Culling images has never been my strong suit but even I recognize that’s too many!
Since I’ve been easing back into work life, other things you haven’t gotten to see are work on some new editing techniques, updates to my client information packages, and I’m in the beginning stages of a new website! It’s hard to believe but I’ve had this site for almost five years now, and it’s time to freshen up. (And hey on an almost purely symbolic note, I officially renewed my business name. Kandise Brown Creative is in it for another five years.)
Oh and! I got invited to two new photography projects and I’m excited to share those when they (or my role in them) are a little more established.
Life stuff: Took Z to the theatre and I saw Lion (she slept through it). New Brunswick had one hell of a snow day (and then by the end of the month I was walking in sneakers because ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ weather). Read two (2) books. Hit some restaurants. Did a day trip and an overnight trip for family visits. Hung out with girlfriends. Started planning our dream veggie garden and mini orchard. Got a meh 11/24 on my Oscar ballot. And I bake bread now!
My girl. My light.
No part of bringing you into this world was easy or fun. Frankly 95% of your birthday was the worst day of my life. But that last 5%, oh. The part where suddenly you were out here with us and hearts exploded and everything changed. I have found depths of love and patience within me that I’m sure didn’t exist before. Everything you do amazes me; I’m in awe of your strength and cheer. (I think we did a pretty good job on your looks, too.) The way your lips press together and your chin wiggles right before you start to cry shatters me. Seeing you and your papa smile at each other puts me back together. I watch you sleep and am at peace.
The past three months have been a blur. There have been days that seemed impossibly hard and days that passed as if in a dream. We’ve been learning about each other and how this thing is going to work. One thing I know is you’re the best decision we’ve ever made. I can’t wait to show you everything.
Continue reading Zara
Wow, is it ever wild looking back at the year this time. Usually I shake up this post for variety’s sake, but this year I’m leaving them in chronological order sheerly for the amusement of watching my stomach get huge. I have to thank all of my 2016 clients for their kindness and patience, making time for extra water and bathroom breaks. I’m not going to lie, shooting 9 hour wedding days with PGP was not easy (not to mention the hormones, were the mom speeches extra sob-inducing this year or… it was me), but you made it fun.
Next I’ll show you what came out.
Continue reading Behind the Scenes | 2016 Wedding + Portrait Photography
Well not to jinx anything, but look who’s writing a timely blog post! And sure my kid is screaming in the background while I do it, but I think this means things are approaching a new version of normal.
After the new year and my birthday, things have really settled into comforting familiarity. We’ve gotten outside for walks, movies, library story time, and well, a human rights protest. Indoor time – and there is so much of it – has been spent reading, watching tennis, snuggling. I vacuumed for the first time since before giving birth, and therefore obviously deserve much praise. I’m slowly getting better at doing everything one-handed.
I was really impressed with myself for getting this month in review post up earlier than last month’s but… er, no. It’s a day later. Oops.
Since I did no work at all in December, it was obviously all about the holidays. It was a cold and snowy month, so cozying up with a baby and a glass of Baileys was easy to do. We enjoyed a lot of time with family, even pulling off our traditional cross-province Christmas travel. At the end of it all we rang in the New Year, quiet and exhausted on the couch with takeout pizza and beers.
Usually at this point in the year I have big goals for myself, but this time I’m trying to take it a little easier. It’s time to watch her grow.
Well hey, this post is overdue and I beeeeeeet you can guess why!
The first half of November was all business, as I photographed my final wedding of 2016 – Caitlin + Travis’s library nerdfest – and hunkered down to edit and deliver all of my work. I shared my mini sessions, and Lise + Duncan’s windy engagement session. Then pretty much the second my business work was complete, I had a baby!
Birthing a baby: a pretty terrible time.
Having a baby: a pretty great time.
The past three weeks have flown by and despite the fact that I already missed out on booking a wedding because I could not respond to my emails fast enough, I’m adapting. The progress is not linear; some days are great and some days I’m crying from exhaustion before ever getting out of bed. I’ve taken over a thousand photos of her already (not an exaggeration) and in classic “cobbler’s children have no shoes” form, almost exclusively with my phone. We put up the Christmas tree and are hunkered down for this cold and snowy holiday season with nothing to do but snuggle.
Hugs from strangers because “60 years or more!” Champagne in the limo and wino waves in the streets. Trekking through the mucky fields. Starting the ceremony with a selfie. Getting blinded by science. Books and video game controllers. “Bobcaygeon.” Party bus!
Ed note: being enormously pregnant for this wedding, I invited my friend Caro along as back-up. She took some of these. It was so great to have you, Caro!
Continue reading Moncton Wedding Photography: Caitlin + Travis