June 26, 2012


 Liv's favourite things:

1. Giraffe
We have lost this little more times than I can remember.  Even before doing this shoot I had to spend hours hunting around the house trying to find him.  She takes him EVERYWHERE.  (Including the warming drawer of the oven.)  I don't blame her though, the little guy is adorable.  She has since expanded her collection to include two dogs and a monkey.  Giraffe seems to still be her favourite though.  In fact, where ever we go, she bee-lines to any giraffes.

2.  Her "Mickey jammas"  (aka: Minnie Mouse pyjamas).   She insists on wearing them every night.  And every day.  Even when we are leaving the house.

3.  Her socks.  It doesn't matter how hot it is outside . . . or at night.  She needs socks AT ALL TIMES.  I was actually pretty impressed that I could take them off for a few shoots with her permission.  It didn't last too long though.

 "Socks!  I need socks!"
"Ahh!  Dat's bedder!  Ank you, mom."

June 11, 2012

The Original Katniss

Ever wonder where Suzanne Collins got some of her ideas for her bad*ss heroine for the Hunger Games?  After spending some time going down memory lane this past week I discovered a story I had written in grade four that would definitely inspire such an intense story of survival.

Enjoy!  (I tried not to edit it.)

A Night in a Cave

One nice day in Colorado, Melanie’s Dad and brother and Melanie went skiing.  It was light drifting snow.  They went to the highest hill (it went past the clouds).  Melanie didn’t want to go down the rocky side so she went and asked her Father if she could go down the other side.  Her Father said she could go “but you have to meet us at the bottom.” Said her Dad.  “Sure!”  Before Melanie knew it her Dad and brother were starting down the hill.  She didn’t feel too confident about it anymore but she went down anyway.  Melanie was looking at the beauty of the wilderness and not paying attention to the where she was going.  Finally she realized that she had to make a turn some time ago.  She was looking and looking but couldn’t find any turns.  An hour later it was four o’clock and it seemed like there was going to be a blizzard.  Melanie found a turn but didn’t think it was the right one so she kept on going.  She was looking at her feet and almost skied right off a cliff!!!  She turned around and skied up the hill for half an hour and found it again.  Melanie still didn’t feel so sure but the sky was getting dark and the wind was blowing pretty hard.  Now it was around five o’clock.  She had no choice so she went on and on and on.  It was six thirty and the wind was blowing around its hardest.  Melanie saw a cave.  She went in, looked around, made sure that it was no one else’s home.  Then she went through her knapsack and pulled out a pair of scissors and a roll of wire her Mom packed incase of an emergency.  Such as if the lift wire broke in half.  With a pair of scissors Melanie went hunting for a moose.  An hour later she returned with a moose.  Melanie took the string like wire and tied the piece to two of the sides of a stick she gathered with a few others.  Melanie made a fire and roasted the moose on the fire.  Melanie tasted some because she didn’t know what moose tasted like.  She took one finger full and spit it straight out.  Melanie left the rest for two reasons.  A.  Because she didn’t like it and B.  Because if wolves came to eat her up they would see the moose and eat it and be too full.  Melanie wasn’t very cold because she had a helmet, snowsuit, neck warmer, and ski boots on top of everything else.  It was very cold up on the mountain that night so she couldn’t get to sleep very well but she did.  Melanie dreamt that her parents sent out a rescue party for her and . . . then she woke up with the sunlight covering the cave with bright light.  Melanie looked stunned as the bright light shone in her eyes.  Melanie knew what time it was looking at the sky.  It was eight o’clock am.  Melanie looked around the room since she had no better thing in mind.  Melanie saw that the meat was gone!!!  Including the bones!!!  Melanie said to herself “Gee I am smart!  I could have been a gonner!!!”  Melanie went for a walk (it was a gorgeous day!)  Melanie walked and walked and came to a hurt dog.  She went and found a vine and as many leaves as she could and bandaged the cut up, and took him to the cave.  Meanwhile Melanie’s Dad had a search party for her.  When the party saw the bones fo the moose they party thought they were hers but they wouldn’t stop there so they continued.  They thought they could follow the bones and find the beast that ate her up.  Meanwhile Melanie packed her stuff on the dog.  She had reins made of vines so she could steer the dog.  Melanie rode on the dog for two hours (the dog walking) then the dog and her did a canter for ten minutes until they heard voices saying, “Maybe she went that way” “No!  She went that way!”  That sounds like my Dad’s voice!  Melanie thought to herself.  They galloped to the voices and sure enough it was . . .  . . . . but the minute the rescue team saw them they were about to shoot the dog!  But they couldn’t because Melanie was on him.  Melanie told the story about her, the moose, the wolves, and the dog.  She also told the story to her brother and Mother.  After Melanie asked if she could keep the dog to keep Laddy company (her other dog).  Melanie told her family the dog’s name was Malcolm.  On the plane ride back Malcolm sat next to Melanie.  The waitress came to give the menus out.  She told Melanie she would be back for her order.  Malcolm kept looking at the menu and said “I’ll have a meat roast.”  Melanie looked at him like he was nuts.  He said “Thank you.”  Melanie ordered it.  At dinner they talked.  Malcolm said he slipped off “Pluto planet of dogs.”  Malcolm asked not to say anything when it was time to get off.  Melanie and her family had a nice trip!

By:  Melanie Struk the girl in the story!

The Different Sides of Me

I am fortunate enough to be attending a photography retreat at the end of this month and one of our assignments was to do a self portrait.  Eeek!  There is a reason photographers are BEHIND the camera.  And, I certainly got a whopping taste of what it is like to be a client of mine . . . it is tough to look at pictures of yourself and not see Natalie Portman or Charlize Theron . . . 

None the less, the assignment is over and I can get on with the other ones . . .

Here are a few that I was thinking about . . .