Thursday, August 26, 2010

{a change is gonna come...}

"The key to to let go of fear..." ~ Rosanne Cash

Ah change, you guide me and repel me all at the same time...I lust after you and loathe you simultaneously. Why must you play with my emotions like that?!?!

Right now, for where I am and where I want to be...change is a good thing...maybe even the best of things..

So I'm pleased to announce that Fifteen:Fifty-One Photography has undergone some changes of its own; a new look, a new feel and best of all...a brand new blog!

Come over and visit me at

Pull up a chair and stay awhile...the conversation is even better when you're a part of it!

Monday, July 26, 2010

{where were we: part 1...}

"So...where were we?!?!"

This is a question that I find myself using quite often now that I have a baby! It seems that regardless of what conversation I am ends up getting cut off mid-sentence thanks to some child related need! A couple of minutes later, yet another crisis is averted and those four words pour out of my mouth in a desperate attempt to pick up where I left off!

It's been working for me so far! Granted, it's not the eloquent conversation starters that I'm use to dishing out, but what can I say, I'm new at this! It's got a nice ring to it rolls off the tongue so easily! So it's become sort of like my personal mission statement as I aggressively pursue my desire to finish what I've started...and my blog is no exception! Who knows, maybe it will make the perfect title for my autobiography one day!

So...let's begin, shall we?!?!

* My computer died! And I don't just mean that it had slight heart palpitations and then declared it a "close call". I mean, right there in the middle of Starbucks, it full on flat-lined! It was a rather stressful day in the Smyth house as we frantically tried to retrieve the work that I had done on it that morning, only to find that things would go from bad to worse very quickly when we made a very fatal error that caused my external hard drive to kick the bucket at the very same time. Awesome! So there we were, at 2:30am with my laptop in the freezer {because someone in cyberspace told us to and by this time we had nothing to lose!} while my husband fixed my backup. Long story short; the external hard drive pulled through...the freezer actually worked {seriously!}...Apple so graciously replaced my laptop hard drive for free...and my boys bought me a 22" imac for my birthday! So forty-eight hours of total panic turned out pretty well for us in the end!

* Hudson got sick for the first time a few weeks ago. The poor little guy got an ear infection and my normally brilliant little sleeper spent the night waking up every fifteen minutes screaming. It was wretched. What was even more wretched though is the discovery that a new mother with a sick baby for the first time could, quite literally, drive herself completely insane trying to self-diagnose on Google! During the dark, sleepless hours of the night, I had successfully managed to convince myself that my baby was dying and let me tell wasn't pretty! Sure enough though, we saw the doctor early the next morning who not only reassured me that Hudson had nothing more than an inner ear infection...but also suggested that Google and I take a little break from each other for a while!!

* It's going to be August in three days! Crazy! This is somewhat terrifying as I realize how quickly the summer is passing us by! But August is also going to be an amazing and very exciting month for me! I often think that as photographers, the learning curve evolves; you tend to go through waves of inspiration as the seasons come and go, and you also go through times of repetition, in which case it can be easy to lose some of your motivation. As a business owner, I tend to experience much of the same cycle as I get better at my work flow or improve my marketing skills. Everything just seems to have its time and place. I've decided though that this summer, I would like to experience something a bit different on the learning curve; something other than new venues or new equipment...something a little more personal. For many, many months now I've been following the blog of Ewan and Brianna Phelan; an amazing couple who give you a completely beautiful glimpse into their world as wedding photographers. In a couple of weeks, I'm going to be heading to London, Ontario so that they can take me under their wing and show me what it's like to be The Last Forty Percent. I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am to spend time with these two and to learn from their brilliant minds as both photographers and very successful business owners. And to top it all off...just as I was finalizing some of the details of my time with them...I got booked to shoot in wedding in {wait for it...} London! I suppose this would be a marvelous time to thank fate for its impeccable timing!!!!

* Speaking of The Last Forty high school boyfriend is getting married this weekend and guess who's doing their wedding pictures?!?! You guessed it {or at least I hope you did...because that was kind of a dead giveaway!}! Julio was my first serious first first lust...and my first of many broken hearts! We were together in the time of CrazySexyCool and Motown Philly. He took me to my senior prom and I'm not going to lie...we got in lots of trouble from our parents over the course of our relationship for various rule breaking in the name wanting to see each other!!! But he was the best first boyfriend a girl could ever ask for and I'm beyond excited for him and his stunning fiance {whom I've never met but I can only assume that she is fantastic given his absolutely stellar taste in women!!!!}. Julio and Candace...I wish you an amazing wedding and an even more amazing life together! You make a truly gorgeous couple {we even have the pictures to prove it!}!

And on that note, I hear a little man downstairs in need of a bath and a bedtime story!!! Bath time has officially become my favourite time of day...mostly because it looks a little something like this...

Sunday, July 4, 2010


"Then followed that beautiful season...Summer...
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape
Lay as if new created all the freshness of childhood."
~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

More of Sarah & Greg's engagement session coming soon!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

{blog in waiting...}

Dear sweet I miss thee...oh let me count the ways! I miss the way in which you lure me to stay up way past my bedtime and the witty banter that you never fail to provide. But what can I son is just irresistibly adorable and while it's true that you don't randomly pee on me the way he does, you also don't provide that same charming little smile that always manages to melt my heart. But I do miss you all the same...

So this is what it's come to ladies and gentlemen; me, talking to my blog as though it's an estranged lover that I've abandoned so that I can run away with my family to the foothills of some far off mountains!!!! And I can't help but wonder if we'll ever be the same?!?!

The truth is, we've been busy here behind the camera...very busy. And blogging, while I've longed for the return of our special love affair, has had to take a back seat for a little while to the real work. We are full swing ahead in what is proving to be an amazing season and once the dust settles a little bit, I look forward to sharing it all with you our little piece of cyberspace!

In the meantime though, we are plucking away, a day at a time, slowly but surely, and enjoying some well deserved time with each of our clients. Not only are we booking for the 2011 season already, but we'll also be heading on our second client inspired road trip in August for another out of town wedding. I can hardly wait!

So, as we bid farewell to the month of June very shortly, know that there is lots to look forward to in the coming weeks! I'll be blogging about Brooke and Alan's engagement shoot, Kari and Lee's maternity shoot (who happen to be in the hospital as I type this!), Lesley and Bill's engagement shoot, Jocelyn and Dan's engagement shoot, and of course, our 2010 brides and grooms!

But for now, as you patiently wait with me a little bit's my favourite reason for my blog absence {and really, can you blame me?!?!}...

Friday, June 18, 2010

{the new generation...}

Hudson: "I'm a PC {on mommy's mac!} and Windows 7 was my idea!!"

Friday, June 11, 2010

{sylvie & denis: wedding...again!}

Being a wedding photographer, I obviously love weddings. I love the joy, the happiness, the excitement and most of all, I love the romance. Simply put...I love love!

My husband and I will be celebrating our five year anniversary this coming August and I just love looking back on our wedding day; the beautiful weather, the time spent with our closest family and friends, everyone looking totally amazing and of course, my husband. My man, my best friend, my most handsome of beloved.

But, when you put all of the beauty and romance aside, I think that it's worth mentioning that a wedding is not the same as a marriage.

I believe very strongly in marriage. I believe in standing before God and committing your life to another human being. I believe in the act of consciously choosing to witness another person's life. I believe that in a world which is lacking so much conviction, marriage opens us up and challenges us to give the most vulnerable and sacred part of ourselves to another.

Having said that...marriage is not always easy. It isn't always easy to compromise. It isn't always easy to share your goals, your dreams, your finances, your remote control. It isn't always easy to make the effort to grow through life along side someone else instead of on your own. It isn't always easy to show true humility for someone you love.

But it is always worth it. It's worth the effort...the compromise...the passionate love affair that comes with knowing someone so intimately. It's worth every moment.

When my God mother called me and asked if I would be willing to photograph the ceremony celebrating her 25th wedding anniversary, I was overcome with honour. I was the flower girl when she first got married and now, twenty-five years later, I'm pleased to say that not only has my style in hair cuts improved immensely but their marriage is also going stronger than ever!!! The silver anniversary is a rare occurrence in this day and age that tends to take matrimony fairly lightly. To witness two people recommit their lives to one another is beyond magical, beyond inspiring, beyond beautiful.

With their three amazing children by their side and all those that they love looking on, Sylvie and Denis renewed their vows in the same church that they originally did twenty-five years earlier. As I watched and captured with completed admiration, I also concluded that there was simply no better way of starting of my new season, both as a photographer and as a mother...than this very place...with these very people...

Sylvie and Denis...congratulations on 25 years of making magic!

I love you! xoxo

Sunday, June 6, 2010

{rockabye baby...}

For my Hudson...
The littlest rocker in my life...