Blink in Pink | Hawaii Portrait Photographer

“It’s not all falling apart. It’s all coming together.”

- Jeff Brown

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This month I had the privilege of attending and photographing this event, BLINK IN PINK. Lash Love Beauty Lounge partnered with American Cancer Society to create a day of pampering for a cause, supporting women who are battling or have experienced breast cancer. Held at SALT at Kaka’ako, this event featured mini manis and hand massages by TSII, sugar free fizzy drinks by Drink Gazoz, mini makeovers, delicious and healthy food and treats, live music by Kristi Masuhara, and other health and beauty vendors.

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Food definitely pretty enough to take a photo of, twice!

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Captured Imagery was honored to have a small pop up

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for some fun photos!

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And the lovely ladies who made it all happen!

We begin to make a difference in this world when we believe we CAN make a difference and take the steps to bring change.

Seeing these women all band together to support one another and using their collective voice to speak a message of triumph, strength, and victory in the face of the greatest odds was such a privilege. These are women who are creating a better world, bringing their life-giving presence to those around them and allowing the hardships of life to purify and strengthen them instead of defeating them. Here’s to every one who has faced darkness and allowed her inner light to guide her through it and illuminate the shadows.

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Kitty Yannone - Captured Imagery's Empowerment Collection

She is a woman of great accomplishment and influence. Peace, wisdom and joy grace her presence. She is a beautiful representation of an empowered woman. This is Kitty Yannone.

 
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Kitty is the CEO of CommPac, Hawaii’s leading integrated communications company. As such, she and her team strive to provide their clients with incredible strategic and creative communication value through counsel. A risk taker from a young age she was intentional about creating a life she loved. Her path through life has been colorful, purposeful and yet not-so-predictable, and it has led her to her current position of success and influence. One of the things she found most impressive when she first started at the company as a junior account executive over two-decades ago, was the fact that in the consulting industry, age was regarded with increasing value and wisdom. Throughout all she’s experienced and accomplished she is still most proud of her two sons, who are outstanding young men, both now with families of their own.

She speaks of living in the moment, following joy, and being true to herself. As Kitty puts it, these things have fundamentally contributed to her empowered and influential path. And to other women who are on the path of designing a life they truly love, she has this to say: “Balance is a very personal thing. Free yourself from all the “shoulds” around you and give yourself the fluidity to appreciate sometimes even the small things that spell success and balance for you.”

Kitty inspires me greatly in the ways that could be hard to understand, for example she finds creative ways to have life bring her what she desires. She is not afraid to step outside of her comfort zone or the “expected path.” She doesn’t shy away from hard questions and she isn’t afraid of taking on controversial matters. Her combination of humor, peace, whit and wisdom was a refreshing reminder to me that age can indeed bring spice, influence and joy in a life that is purposeful and one that ultimately impacts our world in a powerful way.

Kitty is a delight in every way and will continue to inspire and empower many more through avenues yet to be seen.

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Nicole Bowe-Rahming - Captured Imagery's Empowerment Collection

“Fortitude is the marshal of thought, the armor of the will, and the fort of reason.” - Francis Bacon

Every once in a while, you have a conversation with someone who you know will leave an unmistakable impact on your life. Exactly how and to what extent you may not be sure but you know you won’t be able to stay the same. This was the feeling I had after lunch with Nicole Bowe-Rahming. She is a fortitude coach and an entrepreneur with a burning desire to see business owners go from average to extraordinary, to see kids go from defeated to daring, and to see women go from frazzled to freedom.

Her business, The Fortitude Coach, was born from an autoimmune disease that threatened her life. Even being a homeschooling mom of two and a Navy wife, Nicole realized she couldn’t continue to wait if she was to be able to fulfill the calling she felt on her life. The Fortitude Coach has grown into The Fortitude Institute with a focus on coaching entrepreneurs and executives through challenges and pushing them to achieve victory and success as well as a focus on helping youth and teenagers grasp their deep value and potential. To the entrepreneur and high performing professional she speaks a message of overcoming obstacles, efficient performance, mindful action, looking behind the mask to find what makes you uniquely you, embracing personal weaknesses and taking back the control you want. Her Broken Molds Youth Program speaks a message of purpose, uniqueness, self value and communication. She coaches young people in the skills that will help them become the next generation that brings positive change to our world.

Nicole shared a unique perspective for women in business that I appreciate. As women in this age of equality we often take on too much and we are too hard on ourselves, never stopping to take the time to embrace the feminine softness and emotional and spiritual processes that is such a deep part of who we are. I believe the conversation of feminism should be less of equal roles and more of equal respect, a perspective that was deepened in my conversation with Nicole. Maybe feminism isn’t about male versus female but rather its about a beautiful dance of unity between masculinity and femininity on every level, spiritually, individually, domestically, economically, and politically. If you are a woman desiring to pursue your dream of building a business, you must allow it to take you on a journey of self-discovery. You must have the courage to wake up and embrace who you ARE. Allow the process to reveal the fire in your soul and uncover your unique message. Use your voice, embrace your pain, and go to a deep place of emotion if that is what your soul needs. Consider embracing tears as expression and cleansing rather then a curse of weakness. Take the time to find strength in your softness and THEN move forward to accomplishment, grounded in full acceptance and love for the person you are. Find the fortitude to overcome obstacles because you are true to yourself and become the powerhouse of change that this world needs.

The deep inspiration that Nicole has left with me has been to fully embrace everything I am as a woman. The past, the journey, the pain, the aspirations, the shadows, the light, the dreams, the potential: yes, the whole scale that is me. As she so beautifully stated, “I want to be known for looking behind the mask because that is where the good stuff is.” After my conversation with Nicole I have now been inspired to always look behind the mask, embrace what I find, bring the shadow to light, empower all the unique potential that is uncovered and live it every day in the most beautiful imperfect way that is me.

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Mary Ronnow & Lieren Pearson | Empowered Women Collection

"The beauty of a woman is not in a facial mode but the true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It is the caring that she lovingly gives the passion that she shows."  Audrey Hepburn
 

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Like the fog that sometimes lingers after a long night, so sometimes seems the delay of the bright sunshine of a dream realized. To remain steadfast in the pursuit of seeing it come to fruition and yet to retain one's grace and strength of character is truly the work of clear and untainted intention.  

Such is definitely the example of Master Esthetician, Mary Ronnow, owner and founder of The Skin Institute Internationalé.  Starting a career in the esthetics industry when she was a single mom of four young children she was excited to learn everything she could and in the years following she worked in every single avenue of the spa industry you can think of.  She saw the need for highly skilled individuals in her industry and was inspired to start her own professional esthetics school providing the best quality education.  In 2002 she opened The Skin Institute in St. George, Utah.  She provides the best.  Not satisfied with simply teaching her students the modalities of the spa services, she approaches her education with whole person training.  Receiving the best quality esthetics education as well as confidence and business etiquette classes, her students graduate certified and fully equipped to pursue a full and lucrative career in the spa industry.  With the growing success and reputation of her school in Utah, Mary had a vision to take her education further. After much research and planning she moved to Hawaii and with her daughter, Lieren, opened The Skin Institute Internationale in Honolulu.  Their beautiful and relaxing third floor space on Queen Street has a lovely energy that is palpable and is the perfect place to learn the art of skin care and pampering services.  

She attributes much of her success to surrounding herself with other men and women who supported her. She takes great pride in her children and said some of her greatest life lessons were taught by them. With her three daughters all being Master Estheticians as well, she finds it incredibly rewarding to work along side them in the industry. 

The gentle grace and buoyant strength of these women is indeed a beautiful display of powerful feminine influence bringing superior service in the industry.  Mary and her daughter Lieren have an unmistakable presence and their voice, influence, and education will certainly motivate and empower many for years to come.  

 

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Pam Chambers | Empowered Women Collection

“Curiosity about life in all of its aspects, I think, is still the secret of great creative people." - Leo Burnett

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She is witty and graceful, charming and full of life, poised and professional.  Pam Chambers is a professional speaker, presentation coach, and corporate trainer. As a woman who has been in business for over 30 years her mission is to help people be the best they can be in how they come across to the world.  From dress and language to networking skills and etiquette she is the pro who creates a safe environment for her students to receive helpful feedback to elevate their personal and professional presentation.  

As I got to sit and chat with Pam, the one word that sums up our time together is 'vitality'.  Motivated by curiosity and taking great pride in accomplishing anything new, even if it's seemingly insignificant, her genuine love of life and exploration is evident in her interest in people and conscious engagement with everything and every one she encounters.  The light of living a full and fulfilling life shines from her face as she speaks of enjoying a lifestyle where she is free to create her own reality and pursue the things she values.  

No one who listens to her speak would imagine that her greatest weakness was once the exact opposite of what she is now so well know for.  Named by Honolulu Magazine as one of Hawaii's 10 Most Admired Women, no one would know that her greatest fear used to be having all eyes on her. She is a beautiful example of the vitality of life rising up to conquer and overcome the limiting agreements of the past and creating a path of power where once was weakness and resistance.  

I am greatly inspired to cultivate curiosity and motivated to confront the resistance in any situation I have yet to overcome. Her influence and example is powerful and her presence, joy and vitality is certainly that of an empowered woman who has not been afraid to do the work.  

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Dr Tiffany Nguyen | Empowered Women Collection

“When your desires are strong enough, you will appear to possess superhuman powers to achieve.”  Napoleon Hill 

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Pure desire is truly a strange thing.  It is often fueled by the dark contrast to everything that is good and beautiful and precious in life.  The dark shadow of hunger fuels the desire for satisfaction.  The deep pain of isolation feeds the intense yearning for light. The bondage of oppression creates a thirst for freedom.  The desire for success lies in having experienced lack.  

In the case of Dr. Tiffany Nguyen,  her story starts in the darkest of times.  Born in post-war Vietnam, her and her family suffered darkness and oppression for years before escaping when she was only six years old.  Living in a refugee camp in Hong Kong  for the next three years, life did not get easier.  In fact, to ensure that her and her family has sufficient food just to survive during this time, she would help her mother salvage discarded food from the kitchen garbage. She and her family were able to come to America when she was nine years old and as the oldest of 4 siblings her responsibilities were heavy as her parents threw themselves into making a living in this new country.  Not knowing any English and never having been in any classroom before, she was put into 4th grade. After that first year of learning everything as fast as she could she advanced to 5th grade and remained on the honor roll for the rest of her school years, and as a senior she graduated 4th in her class.

And now today she is a wife, a mother of four, a practicing chiropractic doctor for more then 12 years, and owner of her own nail salon. The one thing that speaks to me so much in the trajectory of her story is the incredible ambition and willingness to push outside of the limits and boundaries that life may have seemed to impose on her.  Her family could have chosen to remain in a oppressed land rather then risking all of their lives to pursue a better life.  As a young girl, she could have settled with being an underdog in her class rather then being the best.  As a graduate wanting to pursue her dream of becoming doctor she could have let her commitments to her parents and siblings discourage her from moving across the country to study for her degree.  As a mother she could have sacrificed her dream to give her kids her full attention and energy. 

BUT SHE CHOSE MORE

Tiffany chose what she knew would feed her soul.  She chose the path where she knew she could make the difference she was called to.  She chose to trust her faith in God and the gifts He has given her. She chose to pursue her passion and her unique ability to bring care and healing to those she serves.  And even though no one would have expected or required her to live so ambitiously she knew that she could and she would. At her practice, Care Chiropractic, she is passionate about enabling her patients to pursue whole-body wellness from the inside out.  Her team at the nail salon, Tiffany's Nails, is all about servicing and pampering customers through nail art, waxing, lash and brow care. And in all areas of her life she told me that she takes pride in the fact that in all the things she pursues for her family or career it all comes from a place of love for what she does and true care for those she serves.  

Dr Tiffany's life is a beautiful example of desire being fueled by the contrast life brings.  I see her story and I'm inspired by the way she turned the difficulties and obstacles she encountered into stepping stones. With tears in her eyes she spoke of the gratitude she carries in her heart for the life she is now living.  And not only is she living a full and empowered life inwardly and outwardly, she also has a big desire to see other women tap into their own potential and strength. She has a goal of one day opening a non-profit outreach that teaches and equips women and families to overcome life's hurtles and push on to a full and fulfilling life.  

May you be inspired today to overcome to obstacles of your life and hold on the the fact that you are indeed the creator of your own reality.  You need never settle for the status quo and you can trust your own intuition and drive.  You can bring big changes in your own life and even in this world.  Pushing comfort zones, pursuing personal dreams, and fully embracing the powerful light within, is truly the mark of an empowered woman.  Embrace your power.  

 

 

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Love the Woman You Are

 
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Your body is the house of the Divine and a shell for magic.  Your eyes are the window to the story you've lived and the stories you tell yourself.  You are full of the energy of the Universe.  Think about it, your entire being is pulsing and teaming with the very power that constitutes the entirety of our solar system. 

As you take a look in the mirror your archaic mind may tell you of all the ways you are not desirable.  It may be distracted or preoccupied with all the that's temporal and shallow, forgetting to see the beautiful soul that is continually emerging from a much deeper place.

Let me remind you, dear one, that you are more then the current story of your life.  You are the author and the main character. You are the mastermind and the actualizer.  Let me ask you today to pick up you pen, no longer ignore the desires and inspiration you have been carrying, and script your story.  Uncover the beauty and the pain. Allow yourself to feel every range of humanity and dance in the fire of your uncensored spirit.  Love the person you are and realize that the steps you take and the path of love you create need never be subservient to any others dictation.  You are the designer, creator, queen and goddess of your life.

Let me also say one more thing.... 'All LOVE becomes HELP.'  Your practice of true living, self love, and pure soul expression becomes the biggest power in this soul starved society; lifting, expanding and brightening the collective state of humanity.  

Honor, love, live from your heart.  You are powerful beyond measure and you are enough.  

The Year of THE VOICE - Empowered Women Collection

"She always knew she had something to say. Deep in her soul she always knew the way. And now emerging from the suppression and silence.... Now is her time."

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The beginning of the year is an incredible time.  Isn't it cool that one little moment soon after the winter solstice can evoke so much reflection, goal setting and new beginnings across the entire planet? 

I for one have not been exempt from digging deep and examining the last twelve months, reflecting on the entire path of my 25 years in this lifetime, and also consciously creating a path for the future.  As I sit and evaluate the past 12 months I am surprised and grateful for what I see.  The best way I can describe the year of 2017 is this – It has been the Year of THE VOICE. 

I've been learning to speak. You see, my story begins in a place of human imposed oppression, where pure hearts routinely submitted to those with less pure intentions.  Brainwashing and mind conditioning were very real things and even self-respect was often examined and judged because it was labeled as pride.  In the religious community that I was a part of until I was seventeen years old, living a full, expressive, creative life was highly discouraged and often punished.  And of course the lifestyle of the religion was also deeply rooted into my family.  As the 9th of 11 siblings I thought my worth lay in perfection - doing all I'm asked in the spirit of a servant without hesitation and questions, cultivating a meek and quiet spirit and personality, never showing the softness of emotion, and never ever pushing the boundaries that others had set for me.  Yes, this was my idea of perfection.  And because of the lies I believed I thought I wasn't worthy of being heard and I had nothing of importance to contribute. But deeper then all this conditioning, ever since I can remember I knew there was more.  Even though that knowing remained simply a feeling for a very long time I look back now and recognize it even when I was young.  What started me on my journey of ridding myself of this bondage was my willingness to ask questions and follow every bit of truth that led to the answers that resonated with my soul. The first question I asked myself was this -  "Am I willing to question everything I know and open myself to exploring the unknown?"  The path of allowing myself to open and explore has often been a painful and lonely one but looking back now I can clearly see the beautiful process. 

It wasn't long into this journey that I discovered photography.  As I shed the layers of protecting myself and  began to open my eyes to the needs of those around me the thing that hurt the most was watching hurt and depleted people try to offer hope and help to others that were empty and aching.  I developed an intense desire to share the message that true change starts within ourselves.  If we are wanting to make a difference in this world we must always begin from a place of fullness and overflow.  We cannot offer that which we don't claim for ourselves; we cannot give love that we don't give to ourselves; the words of empowerment and courage we offer to others loose their power if we are not also speaking them also to ourselves. As my photography skills developed I found that what I found the most fulfilling was capturing a person's own unique beauty and strength and showing in back to them in my portraits and it was then that I realized I wanted to go into photography professionally and use it as a tool to speak a message of value, self-love and unique beauty to women everywhere.  I started Captured Imagery in July 2015 and the last two years have been filled with every possible opportunity for personal growth and continued exploration of all that's still unknown.  In September 2016 I met the man that is now my fiancé and fell totally in love (like head over heels).  I remember telling a family member that for some reason I feel like this relationship was meant to be the thing that takes me to the next level in my own journey of self-discovery and uncovering the blocks that still remained.  I could not have been more right.  In the last year I've moved from my comfortable and predictable life in small town NY to the breathtaking island of Oahu Hawaii with him.  I've met the most amazing people who have walked with me through the thick and thin, I've had the joys and struggles of again building my photography brand, but the most amazing and life changing discoveries I've had have been within my own soul.  I uncovered the deepest hurts of my childhood and found healing for the pain.  I learned that I could express myself fully and be met with unconditional love.  I've also learned that if I am ever thought to be not enough for some or too much for others the strength and confidence of my spirit lies only in what I believe about myself.  I've learned to leave space and love for the dark shadows that remain in certain areas of my personality.  I've learned that boundaries are not only okay, they are crucial if I want to live a life of full expression.  And I’ve learned that my voice matters and needs to be heard. Through it all my passion to continue the work I do through my photography has only deepened and expanded.  

And this collection is a direct result of the deepening. It begins featuring me and my story and not only do I claim the title of being an Empowered Woman but also in this first feature I wanted to give you the clear meaning and purpose of this collection for me personally, and what you can expect to find when you come to this blog. Because of the oppression and silence I’ve lived in for so many years, my desire to uncover the message of hope, beauty and opportunity that I’ve been carrying is enormous.  I’m so excited to share the messages and portraits of women who are making a difference and living their dreams, and it is my intention that for some who read these features it will be the voice that encourages them to break free from any self-imposed limitations. I can think of nothing that would bring me more joy then seeing more women completely committed to themselves and the dreams of their heart, more willing to challenging every limitation their mind has set, more enabled to give from the overflow of their own empowered spirit, and more fully prepared for the journey that every courageous path takes us on. 

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Kadence | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

Meet Kadence, this beautiful 12 year old ballet dancer.  The talent this girl possess was so evident at her shoot it was breathtaking!  Being able to celebrate and capture such loveliness is nothing but pure happiness for me!

The Interview:

How long have you been dancing?  About 6 or seven years.  I think I was six years old.  I started out at the Newton Dance Company and have been there ever since.

What got you into dancing?   My mom.  She brought home this brochure that she saw and asked if I wanted to sign up for it.  

Who do you most like to dance with?  I think the group we have at the studio.  I like to dance with them

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? For now dance is just a hobby for me.  In the future I'd like to have a career doing something with animals.

Do you do any other types of dance?  I also do jazz and lyrical.  

How many performances have you done so far?  I think I've done around 12 performances. I like performing.

Have you ever had a mishap at a performance?  I did, one time when I was a little bit younger. I was dancing and my hair piece fell out. 

How do you feel when you perform?  Happy and excited.

If you could be an animal which would you choose and why? Mmmmm, maybe a blue jay. I like the color blue plus they can fly.

What are three things do you always have in your dance bag? Shoes, extra pair of everything, deodorant.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?  Not taking things always in a negative way.  Choosing to see the positive in everything.

Alina | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

The Interview:

How long have you been dancing?  I started dancing when I was 5 years old.

What got you into dancing? I always liked the ballet style of dancing.  I thought it was really pretty to watch point shoe dancers and how they do all these great performances on their toes.  I always wanted to work toward that because I thought it was something different to do.  I think my mom originally brought up the idea of dance class to me. But then as I started doing it I got really into it and it became my hobby.  You know, everybody has their 'thing' and mine is dance.

What do you like about dance? I like how you can express yourself without really needing to talk.  You get to be yourself and people can't really judge you for it because there are so many different styles: lyrical, contemporary, ballet, etc.  It's really for everyone.  Everyone dances whether it's in your room alone or in a studio.  Everybody does it.

Do you have a favorite dancer?  This is going to sound really cliché but my favorite dancer is my teacher.  Heather teaches me a lot and I've always looked up to her.  I've always just thought she's so cool. She's awesome!

Where do you want to go with dance?  I hope to be professional some day.  One thing I've always wanted to do is somehow help people through dance, like someone who's having a problem in there life or struggling with something and they don't really know how to express themselves to others.  I want to teach people "Hey, you can dance!"  It's such a great way of expressing yourself.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?  I want to be making a career out of this. I'd like to be in a professional dance production somewhere.  I've always looked up to the Rockettes.  I think they're so super talented.

How do you feel when you perform?  I love performing.  It's a big thrill because I'm backstage and I get really, really nervous.  I'm like " O gosh..."  Then I actually get on stage and I'm just super happy.

What has dance taught you?  It has taught me a lot of confidence.  Be proud of what you're doing.  You don't have to be nervous in front of other because they don't judge you for it. I've made a lot of really good friends because of dance which is something I'm really happy about.

Which person would you want to dance with if you could?  I really like dancing with my friends.  They're just really fun to dance with.  We have such a great connection.  It's awesome!

If you could be an animal what would you be and why?  Hmmm, I was gonna go with a unicorn but I'm not gonna do that....  I really like manatees.  Manatees are my favorite animal because they're so big and they're nice to people.  You can swim with them and they're just like "Hey, how you doin'?" They're like a walrus but they don't have tusks.  They just swim, sleep and eat.  That would be me as an animal because I sleep, I eat and I dance.  That's close enough.

What are three things that are always in your bag? Bobby pins, they're a must.  I always have my shoes with me, like 5 extra pairs at all times.  And then water always water.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?  Being with my family and friends, hanging out with them, eating food with them.  For some reason all my conversations come back to food somehow!

Larissa | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

This beautiful 14 year old, Larissa, loves to dance and bring joy to others through dance.  Capturing these portraits of her beautiful talent was a wonderful privilege! I love nothing more then a day at my studio with a ballet dancer!

 

The Interview:

How long have you been dancing?  Since I was 2.5 so about 12 years.

What got you into dancing? My mom signed me up for classes because she said I was always dancing around the house and I liked to twirl.  It's just another way of me expressing my creativity.

How does dance inspire you? It inspires me to push myself and test my limits.  If I'm not feeling so well I have to suck it up if I want to go to dance and see my friends.

Do you have a favorite dancer?  One of my favorite dancers is Misty Copland because she did so much for the dance community and the African American community.  She broke down so many walls.

Where do you want to go with dance? Do you have some goals for yourself?  I like using creative movement andI like the idea of using that in what I do.  I wanna be a teacher so incorporating that somehow would be cool, maybe as dance therapy or something like that to help kids.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?   I'll be graduated from college and I'd like to get a teaching job.  I also would like to keep dancing as long as I can besides also incorporating that into my field of work like I mentioned.

Do you do any other types of dance besides ballet? Yes, I do tap, jazz, hiphop, modern, a little bit of lyrical.  I pretty much do it all.

Do you hope to inspire others to dance as well?  Yes, I definitely do. I'm teaching classes at dance world now and I love teaching the kids.  I love interacting with the younger kids, talking to them about dance and teaching them dance.  It's just something that I think everyone can do. 

Do you like performing?  I absolutely love performing.  It gets my adrenaline flowing and then once I'm on stage I'm just free to let myself go and dance my heart out.  That's one thing that makes my really, really happy is performing for people and making them happy.

How much do youpractice?  I have classes three times a week.  I also do dance company at my school so there's quite a bit of practicing. And I practice outside of class to if I'm stuck on a specific step or something.  So yes, I put quite a bit of practice in.

What has dance taught you?  It's taught me that I can just be myself and I don't make a fool of myself when I'm just dancing because I love it so much.  And it's also really boosted my confidence in being on stage and talking in front of people.

If a child told you they want to be a dancer what would your advice be? My advice would be "Go for it and stick with it all the way up. You will love it when you get older and even if you go through hardships in the beginning you'll get past them and get so much better.  You'll be amazing at it and you'll love it."

If you could be an animal what would you be and why?  I'd love to be a dog because they are just so happy and they make people happy. They're so fuzzy and they just sleep a lot.

What are three things that are always in your bag? Tape for my blisters, hair ties, and money because I always need money.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?  Dancing.  Really I just love dancing and that is truly when I'm the happiest.

What is your key to success? Don't give up and keep practicing.  Persistence and repetition.

Katy & Samantha | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

Sisters, dancers, friends.... These two lovelies have been dancing for years and are extremely talented. They both started at Dance World Dance studio and are now a part of their Showstoppers team.  From learning the choreography to lessons with their friends to performances, it is obvious that these sisters love the art, creativity and beauty of ballet dance. I immensely enjoyed documenting such talent and celebrating their beauty in these gorgeous portraits.  

 

THE INTERVIEW ...

How long have you been dancing, Sammy? For 10 years. I started when I was 3 or 4 years old.

And what about you, Katy? Almost 14 years.  I started when I was 3

Katy, why do you like dancing and how does it inspire you?  I like dance because it's a way I can express myself and I love all the moves.  I also get to do it with my sister and my friends. That's really fun. 

Sammy, what got you into ballet dancing?  My mom signed me up for dance classes and I really liked it because it was a fun way to express myself and hang out with my fiends and have fun. 

Sammy, do you have a favorite dancer? Not really.  I appreciate anyone who can express themselves the way that they want to through dance.

Sammy, how much do you practice?  I practice a lot! I'll be at school and if I can't get up and do the choreography then I'll just sit there and run the moves through my head.  And I'll also do the moves with my fingers as I practice the steps in my thoughts. 

Where do you see yourself taking dance in the future, Sammy?  I might take it further in my life in the future but right now it's just a hobby. 

What about you Katy, where do you want to take dance in the future? Do you think you'll become professional? I don't know... I think I'll do dance and I'll probably have my kids do it to but I don't see myself becoming a professional dancer.  I want to be a teacher and teach elementary kids. 

Sammy, do you do other types of dance besides ballet? I do all types of dance.  I really like lyrical and jazz. 

Sammy, how do you feel when you perform? I like the strong adrenaline rush that I get when I'm backstage waiting for your turn to go. And then once I get out there I just do it. 

What's been the biggest mishap you've had at a performance? There was once that I spun so much that my glasses fell off my face! 

Katy, do you hope to inspire other's to dance? Yeah I think it's something that's really cool. I especially love the shows and performances. It's a lot of fun getting to share your talent with other people. It's a really good thing and I think everybody should do some type of dance. 

Katy, if someone told you they wanted to start dancing what would you tell them? I'd tell them to go for it and don't be scared of judgement. Be yourself because dance is a sport and an art and it's one of those great things that you're just gonna love. 

Sammy, what are some of the biggest challenges you've come across in dance?  Certain moves, like leaps and spinning that are a little more difficult. I had to get built up for it and push myself out of what's comfortable. 

What about you Katy, what have been some of your biggest challenges? Flexability!  When I was little I was not flexibly at all and I struggled a lot. But, it's been so nice to see through the years that my dance skills have developed and I've been able to learn new techniques. 

Katy, what has dance taught you? I think it's one of the everyone can do.  No matter your background or body type it's one of those things that everyone can master and overcome.  I know people say they can't dance but dance is very inclusive and everyone can do it even if they might have just a few lessons.

Sammy, what three items do you always have in your bag? Deodorant, water bottle, and tights.

What about you Katy? I always have extra shoes, hair brush and chap stick. 

Sammy, what is your idea of perfect happiness?  Being with people that make me feel completely accepted and I can be completely myself without worrying that they'll judge me. 

Katy, what is your key to success? Trying Hard.  You have to give effort 100% and believe in what you're doing. 

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Abbigail | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

Abbigail is a talented 15 year old that started dancing at Dance World Dance Studio when she was just 4 years old. The day at my studio capturing these stunning portraits was such a memorable time.  Abbi, I hope these pictures are a lasting portrayal of your strength and beauty as well as a celebration of what the expression of dance means to you.  

THE INTERVIEW ...

How long have you been dancing? Since I was 4, so about 11 years. 

What got you into ballet dancing?  Watching people, how they move when they dance.  And in my 4 year old mind I'm like, let's try it!  

What's your favorite part about dancing?  The music mostly. I always listen to the beat first to get the movements correct or to help me think of the best dance movements for the song. 

Where do you see yourself taking dance in the future?  I see myself doing dance as a hobby mostly, but I'd make a career of it if my first job didn't work out.  If I don't make a career of dance I'd probably be an anthropologist.

What are you doing if you're not dancing? Probably reading.

Do you do other types of dance besides ballet?  I do tap, jazz and a little bit of lyrical. If I were to get into any other type of dance besides those it would probably be hip-hop.

How do you feel when you perform?  I like performing, but the night  before the show I'm always so nervous. Then, even tho I'm scared to go on stage I do it anyways.

What's been the biggest mishap you've had at a performance?  Last year the music stopped and I had to keep going. It hadn't ever done that during the practice so it threw me off.  It came back on then and it was fine but yeah, that was a  little scary. 

Do you have a person you like to dance with?  My friend Shelby.  She's in the dance class at school. She started dancing last year and I actually got her into it. 

What three items do you always have in your bag? My phone, earbuds, and shoes.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?  Being where I want to be and liking it there. 

Do you have a key to success?  Work hard. There's going to be failures either way but don't give up. Don't back down.

 

 

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Kylee | Captured Imagery's Dance Project

The grace and sweetness of young Kylee was the first thing that impressed me about her.  Then as we got into her dance shoot at my studio her incredible talent left me speechless.  These portraits are only a glimpse at the delightful time we had and the beauty this little person possess. 

 

Here are a few highlights from the conversation I had with her...

How long have you been dancing? I started dance lessons when I was three.

What got you into ballet dancing?  When I was like two years old I would dance and twirl a lot.  My mom noticed this and thought I would probably love to take dance lessons and be really good at it. 

Do you have a favorite dancer? Misty Copland because she stands up for what she believes in.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years? I want to be a professional dancer and I hope to one day own my own dance studio.

How many performances have you done so far? Lots.  I was probably 4 when I did my first performance and we do one ever year at my dance studio.

How do you feel when you perform?  All night before the performance I can't sleep because I'm so excited.  But then once I get on stage I just take a deep breath and do without even thinking about it. 

What do you like about dance?  It's fun!

How much do you practice? Like.... 24/7

If you could be an animal, what animal would you choose and why? Uhmmm I don't know... probably a pygmy marmoset. They're so tiny and adorable.  Then I'd also be a monkey because they really like to climb and I climb a lot.  

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PHOTOGRAPHER: Captured Imagery

DANCE STUDIO: Thousand Islands Dance Academy

MUAH: Janet Barnes at Evolve Hair Studio

 

Captured Imagery Dance Project | Breanna

Captured Imagery's Dance Project is a result of my desire to feature local talent, provide value to dancers in the community, and also simply for my personal artistic gratification.  The beauty of dance has always fascinated and inspired me and I am delighted to create stunning imagery that celebrates it.  I am also super excited to be working with local makeup artist, hair stylists, and dress shop to provide full styling for all the talented young ladies I will be photographing. (scroll to the bottom for links)

The first in my dance portrait series, Breanna is the most confident, compassionate and spunky eleven-year-old I've ever met. From beginning to end her time in my studio was full of fun and energy.  She pulled out lots of her fun dance moves and I couldn't be happier with the result.  Here's a closer look into her beautiful young character...

How long have you been dancing? I started classes just over a year ago but I've always just been dancing.

Do you do other kinds of dance as well? I just take ballet lessons but at home I teach myself contemporary, hip-hop, and other types of dance. If I started lessons for any other type of dance it would certainly be hip-hop.

What got you into ballet dancing?  Misty Copland. She's a professional pointe dancer.  I was watching a bunch of her videos and a TV show about her and it just made me want to start dancing. She started dancing when she was thirteen, defied all the odds against her and is now one of the lead dancers of the American Ballet Theatre. I saw her in a magazine and I was just like, "Mom, I need to do pointe!" She's definitely my favorite dancer.

How many performances have you done so far?  I haven't done any yet but we're preparing.

What is your favorite part about dance?  The crazy dance moves and I love the music. 

Do you plan to do something with dance later in life, or is it just a hobby?  I like it as a hobby. I kinda want to be a doctor when I get older, a brain or heart surgeon.

How much do you practice? All the time.  Like, if I'm not at dance class I'm dancing around the house and down the stairs.  I've got my barre at the house to.  If I'm not dancing around the house or using my barre I'm usually out in the entry way with a hula-hoop just dancing with that.

What 3 items do you always have in your bag with you?  Deodorant, brush, and bun pins

If you could be an animal, what animal would you choose and why? A polar bear because they're so fluffy and snuggly. But... now that I think about it I'd like to be a unicorn and a polar bear.  A uni-bear!

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Portrait of a Young Lady | Watertown, NY Portrait Photographer

I had a princess in my studio!

Beautiful Aliegha is talented, super smart, and simply gorgeous.  She is interested in becoming a model and I had the privilege of capturing these shots for her modeling portfolio.   We had a wonderful day playing in my studio; professional makeup and hair styling, great music and of course, modeling for my camera! Isn't her hair to die for?!

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Watertown professional portrait photographer
Watertown professional portrait photographer
Watertown professional portrait photographer
Watertown professional portrait photographer

A Beautiful Pamper/Photoshoot Day - Behind the Scenes

Janice is a young mother of two and was gifted a pampering glamour photo shoot by her husband.  Planning, designing, shopping... what fun it was getting ready for her shoot!  Here is a collage of photos from the 'behind the scenes' on the day of her photo shoot.  Hair and make up, delicious snacks, music and wonderful conversation all were part of the experience. 

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Then the fun started!  As a photographer, I count it a huge privilege to capture the strength and beauty of motherhood in my portraits.  As I look at these portraits of Janice, not only do I see a gorgeous woman, I also see a devoted wife and mother who took time to invest in herself and celebrate her strengths.  I see a portrait that will be simply priceless in the years to come.

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And what young mother doesn't also love a great portrait of the loves of her life? 

At the end of Janice's glamour shoot her husband brought in the two babies.  We got a great family portrait and a few beautiful couple photos. 

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Thank you Janice, for allowing me to capture these beautiful portraits of you and your sweet family.  It is my hope that they always remain as a testament to the love and relationships you share.

What is this sash and how many dresses can I make for you?

"But I don't have anything to wear!"

Sometimes coming up with great outfit ideas for a photoshoot can be daunting. However, with the help of a little creative imagination and a couple sashes you have nothing to worry about.  Sashes? Yes, see for yourself.

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These silk strips of fabric have been a great resource in my studio! With them I can add character to a plane shirt or dress.  I can create a variety of dress styles, from halter neck to couture rosette.  They can also be used as belts and scarves.  There are so many beautiful options! I make it my responsibility to help you style your photoshoot and with the black sash you are never without a host of unique ideas.

Check out this sample of styles from my last shoot. 

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"Creativity is the product of a free Spirit"

Scott & Kacie - A Valentine's Shoot

These two finally have portraits! 

Scott & Kacie were the winners of a Valentine's photoshoot contest I did on FaceBook.  Before this they haven't had any portraits of the two of them together.  In 10, 20, 30 years and beyond the strength and beauty of their relationship will be seen and cherished in these portraits. 

Love is a beautiful thing and having portraits that capture it is invaluable.

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"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it."