My mother makes 24 jars of strawberry jam every year; but this year, I got to make the jam and I got jam-happy. After making 24 jars of strawberry jam, I made 3 jars of peach jam and 5 jars of blackberry jam. Mom says that once you have homemade jam, that you cannot go back to "that smuckers crap" and I could not agree more. Here is the recipe for you all to try it yourselves! I do not suggest making 24 jars, but a few batches really doesn't take that much time or effort.
Sure Gel Pectin
For Strawberry Jam:
4 cups Strawberries
4 cups sugar
For Peach Jam:
2 lbs. peaches
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
4.5 cups sugar
For Blackberry Jam:
6 cups blackberries
5.25 cups sugar
1. Crush/finely chop the fruit you are using and mix with the sugar. Let this sit for 10 minutes while stirring occasionally.
2. Place the pectin in a pot with 3/4 cup of water and bring to a boil. Then boil for one minute and keep stirring.
3. Pour the pectin into the fruit and sugar mixture and stir for 3 minutes.
4. Finally, pour it into jars and leave them in one place for 24 hours, then place in the freezer for up to a year.
Last week, I upgraded cameras from my Nikon D3000 to a Nikon D750 and here’s why:
All of these factors give me more freedom in my shooting style, which I want for my next upcoming shoot. I cannot wait to be able to master this camera and produce some amazing shots!
Kelsey is my mother's makeup assistant and a rising junior. She is a fantastic guitar player and I wanted to do a more professional shoot with her in order to highlight her talents. We went out to the Savannah Canal near downtown Augusta, GA, and got shooting. The location was amazing, but it was a slight adventure to get there (lots of not well worn trails). The makeup, was done by the always amazingly wonderful makeup artist Karrie Lykins. See more of her work at https://www.karrielykinsmakeupartist.com. Every time she does makeup for me, she knows exactly what I am looking for even when I cannot explain it and I love her for that. Enjoy a few of these shots, and if you want more details on how I got some of the images, let me know!
Last week, I had the pleasure of photographing Katherine Dunaway, a rising junior at the local high school. She is such a sweet and beautiful woman, and I wanted to share these images with you all. I started out with the idea of a coffee shop feel, but when we arrived on the location, there was this fabulous shop front and I went straight for it. We had such a great time, and I'm so glad that I am able to use model references from Karrie Lykins MUA. The girls that she suggests to me are alwasy wonderful! Enjoy these shots!
Makeup by: Karrie Lykins MUA
Have you ever had one of those days where you are motivated to something, but you have no idea what you want to do? It happens to me all the time in photography. I got a need to shoot, but don’t have any plans made to do it. Those are the days when I turn to my mom, a makeup artist, and have her pick a client to have their makeup done and get a photoshoot with me. I flip through Pinterest and find one picture that I love to start ripping into. This inspiration picture helps me find a palette, location ideas, and makeup styles that I want to use.
I tell mom what I’m going for, and she perfectly puts it into the model’s makeup. Once everything is all done with the model’s styling, we go out! Sometimes it’s as far as the backyard, other times it’s a trip downtown. Then we just do it. I do my thing and make my model feel beautiful and natural.
Things like that usually solve my problem of having a need to shoot, but not knowing what. The other times that I go out, when I have a plan, I pull inspiration from everything: Pinterest, music, life, books, my friend David, and my family pitches in ideas too. Sometimes the best ideas hit when I drive to and from home on those backroads with old houses and farms.
Have you ever wondered what goes through a photographer's head when they are planning a shoot. Honestly, it is a lot of trial and error and staring into what I think is space but is really a person and now I am creeping them out... It happens. I have been toying with the idea of an eerie, morbid, lake shoot for a while and this summer, it is going to become something amazing. Now, when I get an idea, I write it down. I have a notebook full of ideas. For this particular shoot, there are many things that I need to do and figure out before anything even happens.
The first thing that I do, after I come up with the idea, is create a pinterest mood board. I fill this up with similar looks that I am going for, poses, colors, makeup, and general concepts that I want to draw inspiration from. The only problem that I have with this, is that I need to make sure that I bring my own style and thoughts to the work that I do (to avoid accidental plagiarism).
For this shoot, I must now find a location, model, a helper, a day with the right weather, a makeup artist, an outfit, and the right camera/film/lens. That is a lot of stuff, don't you agree? Well, honestly I do live next to the Savannah river, so a large body of water won't be that hard. I just have to go out and find the right spot. A model, on the other hand, is very difficult. I want a small girl with a soft face, but she cannot be too young. The goal is to show an ethereal portrait of a young woman, with contrasting features to the water. If the water is dark, I would like her to be light and vise versa. I am not sure what kind of hair I am looking for, but I do know it must be on the longer side (just past shoulders or longer, but not past the middle of the back).
I already have a helper, actually two helpers. One being my best friend David who is a great inspiration to me, and one being my mom who is great and holds my reflector. The weather I need is an overcast day. That is it really. So long as there is not much direct sunlight, as these are supposed to be moody and cool like that. My makeup artist is my mother, Karrie Lykins. We have gone over the look I want, which is a soft glowing eye, light pink lip, and a little blush. My mom is awesome and we are on the same page with the look. I also recently found the perfect, vintage style, white lace dress. It is just light enough to float on the water and it is amazing. I have been looking for something like it for a long time.
Stayed tuned to my blog because I will be discussing my camera/film/lens choices soon!