Monday, March 7, 2011

goPro & friends

this post is ubsurdly late. i blame the tardiness entirely on the painful and equally annoying ear infection that has been dizzying my mind for the last week.

roughly 4 weeks ago, i decided (on a whim) that i JUST HAD TO go to san diego for the bluelily gopro workshop weekend! it was only two weeks away and i had to convince ryan that it was a must. at first, he wanted to know why it was impossible to find rad photography workshops in seattle.... but then (he says) he could tell by the look on my face that this experience was an absolute MUST and he was 100% in support of the idea.

after all, it was bluelily. theeee bluelily. (check out their amazingness right here)  c'mon. how cool.

how cool, indeed.

upon my arrival at the san diego airport, i met up with three other (fabulous) gopro attendees: meg from kansas, dana from alberta, canada and trisha from michigan. all three, totally awesome from the get-go. we shared a rental car to the beach. as we were leaving the rental agency, we asked for directions to the nearest target or walmart. the rental agent insisted on knowing why we needed to go to target or walmart. meg told her ever so matter-of-factly that we needed a breast pump. the look on ms. rental agent's face was priceless and assured me that i was in for quite the weekend.

learning began at oh nine hundred on friday morning at the beach house. (the FABULOUS beach house with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the ocean). we talked cameras, composition, lighting, marketing, etc. tyler and wendy were meant to take beautiful photographs. they were also meant to teach. they are genius.

my favorite line of the weekend came from tyler on day one: "when i teach a man how to sit...."
oh, i loved that.

after a lovely intake of a ton of knowledge plus a ton of m&ms (the bowl was somehow perpetually full), we went on our first photoshoot fieldtrip to shoot this absolutely gorgeous family at the beach.

 we practiced our custom white balance skills on each other. cynthia is sooo lovely (inside and out).
we laughed. we made funny faces. some of us cried (maybe we missed out littles at home even though we were having a blast). we took a ton of photos of the super creepy giant chef statue adorning the corner of the kitchen. we were all fast friends.

see what i mean? super creepy.
and on day two, we talked shop some more. we played in photoshop. we learned about studio lighting (so rad) and wendy and tyler graciously shared some invaluable tips and tricks re: client development. an hour or so before sunset, with the perfect light outside, we went on a field trip to a gorgeous old mission bridge and photographed this stunning, blissful couple:

the group:

cynthia, debbie, kelley (my nikon partner in crime and a very talented artist. check out her bead work), me, wendy, tyler, cam (definitely earned his title of "token dude" - read all about it here), meg, trisha, crystal b (be sure to check out crystal b's amazing work at her etsy shop here), and dana (read here about dana's long journey to get back home to canada after losing her passport... i was fortunate enough to have some extra time with dana as she passed through seattle on her way home). i heart my new friends sooo much and am so excited for the reunion in august!

 i love cool bridges decorated with cool graffiti.

even if i had come away from this workshop weekend without learning one single thing about photography i would have felt more than justified in the money spent for the friendships and memories i walked (well flew) away with.

flew over the golden gate bridge on my way home and even though i was curled up in a fetal position, tears streaming down my face as i practiced labor breathing (thanks to the mixture of ear infection and change in elevation), the bridge brought a giant smile to my face. gorgeous, giant structure - painted the most glorious orange-red. my fave.

getting home to my boys was the perfect ending to an epic awesome weekend. thanks wendy and tyler and the gang. you totally rock.



"some pursue happiness. others create it" - unknown.


  1. love it :) love you. miss you.

  2. I am so glad it was a successful weekend! I am proud of you sis...!

  3. The pictures of the family on the beach are fabulous! LOVE the colors! Sounds like a great weekend!

  4. i LOVED meeting you!!!
    it was such a fun weekend.
    i am so glad that you came.....and we went to rite aid.
    best photo weekend ever.

  5. Nikki, I am swooning over your shots here! I love them! Share with me your trip... (I admit to being green with envy!) I am proud of you for taking the plunge! Love you girl!