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Welcome 2018 and New Blog

Hi there,

It’s finally ready. My new photography blog. I will do my best to keep this opening page short and sweet but the old writer in me is never too far off. So bare with me if you will, I have so much to share.I have had the amazing honor to capture many things in my life.It has not only made me a better photographer but better person overall. I truly mean that.

With 2017 officially behind us I have been thinking a lot lately about the future. Reflecting actually. I am realizing how much I have photographed in my career.Not just families, and kids, and people in general but other things too.Animals, marketing products, landscapes, nature, homeless people, sick people, people who have lost loved ones, and people who have found their forever love. I have been to the other side of the world in Guatemala and tried to capture stories there.Poverty, illness, desperation, church, faith love, smiles hearts I have had my camera with me on every family vacation, every birthday, every holiday, every neighborhood gathering, every 4thof July fireworkThe list seems endless, yet through it all, this whole sometimes hair pulling out journey, never once have I doubted the camera in my hand.I may have doubted myself, my choices, my angle, my lighting, but never the camera, that heavy weird extension of my hand that knows the exact moment to make it blink and capture what the eye sometimes misses.

So now with 2018 here I have come to realize, I want to work harder, work smarter. See more, seek more. Make better choices, find my voice and stop settling for what I think would be a good photo, and instead show the world is an untold story through the eyes of a stranger. I have always said that my favorite thing in the world to do is make people happy.I want them to smile, I want them to feel good and I hope to inspire them and help them find their own journey whatever that maybe.

So please if you don’t mind humoring this ole gal, let me allow to share with you some of my favorite images I have been able to capture over my 8 years in photography. If anything it will help you get to know me better, know my heart and my eye and also feel free to browse my Portfolio and check out my other Galleries HERE. I would love the opportunity to hear from you and perhaps earn a spot in your future being able to capture your own reflection, your own story as I am living proof it never truly ends. Thank you for being here, I am honored more than you know.

Mary

 

Must start with my loves, this was taken a few years ago but will forever be one of my favorite pictures of the boys. Laughing, happy beautiful. Brothers and owners of my world.

This beautiful and strong lady was my neighbor and friend. She asked me to come along with her and some friends of hers on her boat. They had formed a water ski team and were braving the late fall temperatures on Lake Wylie and asked me to take pictures. I chose this photo because she looks so powerful and beautiful driving the boat. I have more of her actually sking but this one spoke to me. Because she never gave up, she never quit. The last time I spoke with her I apologized that I wasn’t able to meet her for dinner like we had planned because I had pulled my back and was not feeling well. And even though she was battling late stage cancer She went out of her way to make me feel better. That was just who she was. She died a week later, breaking every heart who knew her. Her name is Tannis Brown, and I will never forget her.

My first wedding. Oh how I was nervous, overwhelmed, out of my league and everything in between. But somehow this beautiful couple made it more easy on me than I could of possibly imagined. I will always be grateful they took a chance on me.

Not much to describe here, the most awesome prehistoric looking creatures and to me the symbol of Ocean waters close by. Flock of Pelicans allowing me a moment into their daily life I couldn’t love these guys (or gals) more and savor every opportunity I can get to photograph them.

Probably my most favorite family shot ever ever. Not just because these folks have been with me from the very beginning but because they allowed me to throw them in a city fountain and act like they are having fun. What I learned later that the joke was on me, they had more fun than I could have ever imagined and to this day they remind me of what family memories are made of. Their friendship and devotion to each other does not go unnoticed and never will. I will always be grateful for them allowing me to see so much joy.

Okay so I am sure many of you have seen this photo on my Facebook page but how could I not include it here. Being able to photograph an event where members of the Carolina Panthers attended was without a doubt a huge highlight for me. Sadly all of these guys have since left the team, but they will always be Panthers in my eyes. Oh and in case anyone wants to know, yes they were all as awesome and friendly in person as they look here in this Photo ( L-R Tre Boston, family friend holding Ted Gin’s son, Kelvin Benjamin, Ted Gin Jr & Stephen Hill.)

The smile at the Dump. My first mission trip to Guatemala in 2013 left a huge impact on me. Especially the children. As hard as it was to capture the true realities of life in a 3rd world country it found a way to still show me so much love and beauty. On this particular day we had taken food to the city dump where many families live and spend hours searching through trash looking for anything they can salvage to eat, use for shelter or use for clothing. I saw this girl earlier in the day, her face and clothing evident of what a day of digging through the trash looks like. She caught my eye because I saw her find a shoe that fit her and she was so excited. One shoe she found in the garbage made her so happy. One old shoe. I will just leave it there as I remind myself daily to count my manyblessings.

If you click here it will take you to his story. I highly encourage you go there. For now I will let his expression of this Father carrying out his son’s legacy explain the rest. Words can never describe what his friendship means to me, and the fact he gave me the opportunity to capture his journey has been one of the biggest honors of my career. It is in these moments when I realize it’s more than taking a picture, it’s about capturing a moment, both past and present. Thank you my friend, I hope I can continue to make you and Eddy proud.

Even though I no longer do maternity shoots, I had to include this adorable couple I met off of a referral. The minute I walked into their house they welcomed me with open arms and I could feel their love for one another still fresh and sweet coming off their beach wedding one year prior. Mix in his old fashion southern gentleman charm, so caring and protective of his wife and her ability to laugh and smile even while so uncomfortable was so neat to capture. I left knowing true romance never dies. And oh by the way, she gave birth to triplets 6 weeks later. I repeat triplets.. Blessings indeed.

I have done many engagement sessions, but this one will always stand out as a favorite memory. Not only do I have the utmost respect for them individually, but also as a blueprint for what love and partnership is truly about. When he contacted me about doing their engagement session he mentioned he had written her letters leading up to his proposal. I told him to bring them along and loved that their session took on a life of it’s own with them simply being “them” and incorporating a personal touch I knew meant so much to them both. Several months later I also had the honor of capturing their wedding. They continue to inspire me every day.

Oh these girls… Like seriously, they are the brightest lights ever and I practically jump for joy when I get the call to photograph them again. I contribute them to their as equally awesome parents who have also been with me for many years. I love that I have been able to watch these girls grow up behind my lens. I hope it never ends. Like ever.

Now, for this beauty…. She was my first High School senior shoot and let me shoot her at 3 different times in many locations because I couldn’t get enough of her gorgeous eyes, not to mention she is one of the sweetest young ladies I had ever met. I have since learned so much about shooting in DIRECT SUNLIGHT like I did here (hello under eye shadows) but doesn’t take away her beauty. I will always be grateful she let me practice on her so many times and I hope she had just as much fun as I did every time we got together.

Oh this moment… I know to the more trained street photographer this capture is way off base composition wise, but I have to say in this moment I just considered myself lucky to drive across the bridge on that day. I was even more excited that I happened to have my camera with me as I was on my way to an editing class. The story here on that day is it was September 11th, 2014. The 13th anniversary of 9/11 and this group of veterans who I later learned are called “Brothers of America” and every year on the anniversary of 9/11 they stand on bridges and overpasses waving the American Flag offering a somewhat comforting reminder to folks driving to work that we will never forget and that Patriotism still exists. I snapped this from afar, not wanting to disturb them as they waved the flags for daily commuters below. My camera could not tell the whole story, as the cars you see crossing the intersection were honking in a united front. It has been the only time I wish I knew how to work the video feature on my camera. Yet in a way this will always remain one of my most favorite spontaneous photography moments.

 

This last photo was my very “First” website photo and includes my original tag line “Simply Life” I had to include it here. The swing belongs to a boy named Vincent, who is now 8 and is the son of my best friend from college and to this day I can still remember the moment when the swing caught my eye in theirbackyard. I knew it would be the photo I would eventually use to open my new website and if possible I think I love it more now then I did back then. To me, it is a reminder of everything I love about photography. The everything and the All. The simple beauty in the sometimes not so simple moments. So thank you for taking time to stroll through memory lane with me. I can’t wait to see what 2018 brings and I can’t wait to share it all with you guys. Again feel free to browse my Galleries and I look forward to updating you guys with more photography moments and stories very soon. Xoxo

 

  1. Demond says:

    Great photos! A picture tells a thousand words and each photo speaks volumes!!

  2. Demond says:

    Great photos! A picture tells a thousand words and each photo speaks volumes!!

  3. Kelly Haag says:

    Mary! Reading this blog and looking at your beautiful pictures made my day! Your heartfelt descriptions and pictures are nothing short of amazing. I’m so glad you’re doing what your love and I’m thankful to have you as a friend.

  4. Kelly Haag says:

    Mary! Reading this blog and looking at your beautiful pictures made my day! Your heartfelt descriptions and pictures are nothing short of amazing. I’m so glad you’re doing what your love and I’m thankful to have you as a friend.

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