Friday, December 9, 2011


I can't believe that Ava is already 3.  She turned 3 yesterday (December 8th).  It's so insane how fast time zooms by.  Ava is such a spit fire! And honestly when I was pregnant with her I knew she would be.  From the time I could first feel her move I knew she was a spunky, energetic little girl.

We had a birthday party for her on Sunday and it was amazing (photos to come soon).
I paid Janet to do the party for me.  All I did was dinner, she did the rest and HOLY COW she is amazing.  If you are in Utah and you need someone to do a party for you we should chat...she's stellar awesome!

Anyway back to Ava.  I love this little ray of sunshine...she makes me happy.


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My Photography Journey.

I've been wanting to write this post for some time now, but honestly things have been crazy and my thoughts have been so amazingly scattered.  Things haven't gotten less crazy or are my thoughts more organized, but I just need to write for me really.  (Maybe this will help me get back into the blog groove)

So let's go back....WAY back.

I remember senior year high school.  Mary, Grant and yours truly took a photography class together.  We made cameras out of oatmeal canisters, developed our own film, and locked ourselves in the darkroom for  the entire class period so we could sleep.  And when someone came knocking to develop their film we would  say "we can't open the door our canisters are open." This was most the time a giant fib.  We were snoozing on the floor.  However through this laziness I did find a love for taking pictures.

Moving on. {past the boring college photography course}

Shortly after me and my own Prince Charming got married I found myself with the desire to do photography again.  So I approached a talented photographer I knew just to ask if I could tag a long and learn a few things.  Well it happened to be that he needed a assistant so he hired me.
He taught me pretty much only camera basics and a little about lighting.  But mostly I was his girl on the phone covering for him why he couldn't pay his bills.  But I did learn a bit.  And I learned from a very talented photographer how to shoot with medium and large format film cameras.
However because this photographer was a crumby business man I couldn't work for him any longer.  It was the most underpaid, slave labor job of my life.  BUT like I said I did learn the essential basics..that I am grateful for.

Years went by and I still loved photography and found myself playing on Photoshop on a weekly basis, although I had NOTHING to process.  But I did.
I would delve into photography sites and wish I could be a photographer.

One Christmas Dave bought me a DSLR to replace my SLR.  I was so excited!  At this point actually being a photographer still seemed so out of reach.

Up until then I was really heavily involved with my {former} eating disorder and honestly felt like I was worthless.  I didn't think I would ever be able to do photography because too many people would pick it apart.  I was afraid to put myself out there.   So I decided just to take pictures of my girls.  On weekly basis I found myself dressing up my littles and taking pictures of them.  Then I would OVER process them in photoshop (I'm so owning up to that one.)  But as time when by I started becoming more confident in my work and in my skills that the work became better and the processing became less.

Here on this blog I got a lot of encouragement, but I was still in a place where I didn't want to be picked apart, because the worthless feeling was still so strong.
So I just day dreamed about really being a photographer.
The day dreaming got SO strong that it seemed like a reality.  So I decided to put out little feelers to see if anyone would be interested in allowing me to take their photos.

I would be lying if I said the first batch was amazing.  OH NO THEY WEREN'T! Holy cow I had a long way to go.  However I knew how to work my camera, and I knew how to focus.  But I didn't know much about lighting.  And I tried to fix everything in Photoshop.
BUT I kept shooting and shooting and shooting.  And I told myself that EVERY day I would need to work on it and learn something new.  And this is what I did.  And this is what I still do.

So as time went on my work got better and better.  I started having people...STRANGERS...ask for advice and tips.  I found this crazy because I was just learning myself.  But then I realized that I knew what they were asking because I was forcing myself to learn.
So I would kindly give them the info I knew.
THEN I had them asking for help with their own work.
I enjoyed helping others and teaching others.  I've always felt very comfortable being in a teaching position.
But as I progressed I would get down on myself thinking that I wasn't any good because I wasn't as busy as other photographers or hadn't booked oodles of weddings or shoots for that matter.
And then I realized what my calling was.  My calling as a photographer was to help others to become great photographers and as I did this I would become better myself.

And with this I have met so many amazing people and been able to teach what I know to women around the country and globe.  I am so grateful for the knowledge that my calling as a photographer isn't just for myself that it's for others.

So as I'm standing here in the now I marvel at where I've come in the time that I have.  And although it may be boastful I am proud of myself.

Photography has allowed me to not focus on my imperfections, those imperfections that really drove me to such an unhealthy place and eventually to an eating disorder.  Instead photography has allowed me to focus on a talent my Heavenly Father has given me.  And he has given me this talent to help others develop theirs too.

Not a day goes by that I don't want to encourage and help others to reach their full potential.  This is so rewarding to me.

I am grateful for my amazingly supportive husband who encourages me to become better every day.  And every day I see that I did something better then the day before.

My journey has been amazing and I can't wait to see where I go from here.

When I decided to start.  OH brother...{hanging head shamefully}

When I decided to start {these are so hard for me to look at}

Now we are talking!

Much better.

So my message to all you who are just starting out doing something you enjoy but may become discouraged with is to not give up.  To keep learning, and keep working.  If it's your calling to do whatever it is, You will be able to do it with!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Taking A Beating.

Over the last two weeks I've really taken a beating from internet onlookers.
I've been tempted to delete my blog because of it.

Anyway, here's a few photos I did of Ava.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I love my Job

Not only do I love my job being a momma to the two most beautiful little girls ever, but I love my job as a photographer.
It's amazing to me how much I've grown in the last year and a half.  
I seriously work on my craft EVERY DAY!
And I think...actually I know this is what and why I have grown so much and honestly become very successful.  
I never in a million years thought I would be so blessed like this.
I am a picky photographer and will only photograph that which I want to.
And by doing this, it has allowed me to really narrow down what type of a photographer I want to be AND has allowed me to shoot what I want to shoot.  

I really enjoy teaching photographers.  For years I read and studied, and practiced all the basics of photography.  
I was fortunate enough to work with a photographer shortly after Dave and I got married and he taught me a bit, then I grew from there.
With my knowledge and my distinct style I have been able to teach other photographers who enjoy my work.

This past July I held my first Wish Retreat.  A photographer retreat.
It was 3 days long and it was a blast.
I rented a cabin up near Park City.  
I planned shoots and taught editing classes and we chatted about business.

I had women come from all over.  Two came from Louisiana and one came from Canada.  Then I had women from all of the state of Utah; from Price and Vernal, Tooele, South Jordan and Saint George.
These women are now my life long friends and I am so blessed to have been able to met them.

I already have my 2012 retreat halfway booked and I'm thrilled.

With that enjoy some fun photos from retreat.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

My name is Kandis and I'm a addict.

Hello, my name is Kandis and I am addicting to pinning. 
PINTEREST has sucked me in and is not letting go.
I could spend ALL DAY pinning.
BUT man does some of these pins make me feel no good.
I really want to see some of these REAL life spaces people pin.  
Everything is so pretty on Pinterest.
I AM IN LOVE WITH IT....I need a therapist for my addiction.

From Pinterest of course!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

2nd Grade? ALREADY?!!!

I seriously can't believe I have a second grader.  WHERE DOES TIME GO?!

Although I wish Elle didn't have to go to school and she could hang out with me all the time (just because I'm selfish that way), I am thrilled with her teacher this year.

Her teacher and I have been friends since Junior High!
I never in a million years thought my child would be taught by my friends (outside church that is).

Not only is she my friend, but she is a fabulous teacher.  Like I said...BEYOND THRILLED!

Staying true to tradition I had to take the DOOR STEP pictures of Elle before she went off to the 'new school'.   Yes we got a new school this year and it's is super nice.  Elle already loves it!

Enjoy these few pictures of Elle...TRENDY AS EVER!


Sunday, August 28, 2011

One large order of McHappiness Please!

Don't you sometimes wish you could go to the drive up window and say "I would like one large order of the McHappiness.....Supersize it? SURE!"

Last week I had the biggest party for myself ever! NOBODY came...but I didn't want anyone to come to my party.  I wanted to sit at my party all by myself and have a big cup of loser-ade, YES.. it was a fantastic pity party. HOSTED for me, by ME...and for nobody else but me.

You see I decided to throw this massive party when I let other people tell make me feel bad about myself.  Notice the word I used. LET. 
I am perfectly aware that I can choose how people will make me feel...and I LET people make me feel like a big steaming pile of poo. 

The party ended and I cleaned up the pity party favors which included a bag full of why me's and dumped the loser-ade down the drain and said "Thanks for coming to my party Kandis, now get out."

And with that I drove to my own little drive thru  stand of "McLife" and saw that there was a giant menu of options and I GOT TO PICK! YES ME! AND ONLY ME.  I decide what I want.
So I decided that one large order of McHappiness I was going to have.  I've also decided on a side of McOptimism, McLaughter and a cup full of McJoy.

I've also decided that I have to make daily stops at McLife to make my order, but I GET TO DECIDE, and every day I decide the same thing.  So it is that sometimes the server at the drive up window can be a meanie pants but I still ordered a McHappiness!  BUT GUESS WHAT? Sometimes they give me a order of McSadness instead, but I still have my McOptimism and McLaughter in the bag.  So the McSadness is easier to take. 

Life is good regardless of what we are given at the drive thru of life, it is up to us decide how we are going to look at it. 

Pitty Party OVER.

Enjoy a few photos of a resent shoot I did of my niece Teri Dawn.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Someone to everyone.

I have a big character flaw I think....that is that I feel like I need to be someone to everyone.
I feel the need to be liked by everyone and obviously that's not the true case.

You see as I've grown with my business I've gained a lot of fans, and quite a few haters too.
For some reason these haters feel like it's their obligation to tell me just how pitiful I am.
I know I need to get a tough skin, but it's so hard!
I know this all goes back to my ED problems and now that I don't have ED to cover up the hurt and pain it is right here on my sleeve.  I've actually thought of going back to therapy because I'm not sure how to deal with the hurt without covering it up.  
I really want people to like that to much to ask?
(would you believe it if I said I am actually crying?! cause I am.)

Anyway.....I needed to throw myself a pitty party for a second.
Don't talk me out of it.
If I'm going to be back blogging, I'm going to blog about the good and the bad...maybe this is a way I can deal with it all.
(just giving you that warning)

Oh here's a few pictures of my littles.