Categories
Family Legacy Just a Thought...

Tualatin Police Experience

I just completed the final day of the Tualatin Police Experience
and I’m not sure I can adequately write down how much this experience impacted me.TPD-badge

I’ve always loved our police department.
We are beyond spoiled with the quality leadership
and officers that wear the Tualatin PD badge.

There is so much good humor
(okay… and bad ‘punny’ humor – which I consider fabulous),
so much comradery, so much wit and so much good-natured ribbing;
It’s a LOT of fun to be around our police force.

But that’s only partly possibly because these men and women are professionals
excelling beyond the typical requirements, going above and beyond the call of duty
and doing it because they care do deeply for their community,
those in their community and any person that is in need.

I cannot thank our Chief enough
for taking time and resources out of the Tualatin Police Department
in order for us average citizens to catch a small glimpse
into the heart and soul of what makes the TPD so special.

Chief Barker provides the kind of leadership
that creates a level of expected respect, quality,
caring and attention to detail that is evident
in the officers that are in his department.
His humility, and the humility of his officers,
is so beautiful to see in this day and age…
especially when they are all so highly trained.

The Tualatin Police Experience highlighted each of these things and more.

Yes, we spent a good deal of time laughing and smiling,
but when each officer presented his/her presentation/demonstration…
it was evident how passionate they were about what they do
and the training to be ready to protect and serve their community.
It was also evident just how exceptional they were in that area…
although it took the Chief coming up and bragging on them
because they would never brag on themselves.

I’ve heard many complaints and horror stories
about officers around the country (founded or unfounded is not the point)…
it is a huge credit to our PD that even with
all the bad guys they catch, tickets and citations that are written…
that they almost never get a complaint.
In fact, some who have been ticketed or arrested
have written letters thanking the officers
for how respectful they were treated during and after the process.

The news will never report on this sort of thing…
there’s no sensationalism in it.
It simply doesn’t sell or boost ratings to report it.
{And being as news these days is more about being a business
than being accurate reporters of truth…}
many won’t report or speak of departments run as efficiently,
humbly and respectfully as the Tualatin Police Department.

But I will.

These men and women have my utmost respect…TPD-coin
and they have my heart, my prayers and my undying gratitude
for all they do day in and day out to protect our community
and make it a safe, fun place to live.
Their servants’ hearts are so evident.

If you live in Tualatin,
please talk to them about getting on the list for their Police Experience.

You won’t regret it!

http://www.tualatinoregon.gov/police/tualatin-police-experience

P.S. I might be able to add photos in the future,
but I need to wait for the approved photos before
including any from the experience.

Categories
Glamour High School Seniors

Erin — Sweet Sixteen Portraiture

I’m so excited to share Erin’s session with you!
Sorry it’s been so long between blog posts…
it’s been crazy around here, good-crazy, but crazy nonetheless!

When Erin’s dad, Tom, approached me about wanting to give Erin a portrait session for her sixteenth birthday,
I was beyond thrilled!

I admit it,
I even cried.

Before you start thinking I’m an emotional basket case
that cries over every portrait session,
it is sooo much more than that!

You see,
I’ve known Erin since she was a baby.
In fact, she has a place in my heart few others have.

I was blessed to nanny for Erin {and later her brother also}
until she was nearly five when Mark and I began our own family.

And now she’s lovely young lady of sixteen!!!

Sixteen!!! I’m in total denial! Life just shouldn’t race by so fast!

When a client is shy or quiet or very reserved,
it’s such fun to be able to bring out their personality
they aren’t always confident to put forward.

Erin is sweet and quiet.
And photographing her was such a treat.

She was convinced she was awkward,
nervous and didn’t know how or what to do…
but she totally ROCKED her session!

I mean look at her images…
you’d like she was a seasoned model!!
You are amazing, Erin!

In her pre-consultation,
Erin and I talked about her desire for natural settings,
fields especially, and how to incorporate her love for ballet into her session…
so I went on a quest.

I knew I had one field already secured,
as it belonged to friends of ours,
but it didn’t have flowers,
so the quest continued.

I found a lush field of tall green “weeds” the owner called it
{although they were stunning white and yellow flowers in amidst the lush green}.

And then, while running an errand,
I found her field…
Knowing Erin’s favorite color was purple,
I was dreaming that maybe,
just maybe I could find a field of purple flowers.

And I did!!!
Even better the owner was thrilled to have us shoot in it!

When the day of Erin’s session arrived,
we weren’t completely sure what the weather was doing,
but we met at her home for my hair & make-up genius, AJ Lane, to work her magic.
We watched the clouds closely hoping that it wouldn’t choose to rain. 

Of course as we arrived at our first location,
it started to rain a little.
Erin and I just looked at each other and laughed.

Of course it would start to rain NOW!
But it was only light rain,
so we decided to forge ahead instead of waste time by sitting and waiting.

And I’m so glad we did!
The rain didn’t last long and the rest of the day was beautiful!
And it not only allowed us to get two totally different types of lighting
{we ended up in full, hot sunshine},
but it also helped the field look more lush and green.

It’s all about the experience.

And although I work to create an experience that will bless my clients…
ultimately they end up blessing me!

Thank you for allowing me to photograph you, Erin!
And thank you, Tom, for thinking of giving this gift to Erin!

What a wonderful gift for a young lady to receive for her sixteenth birthday!

Categories
Glamour High School Seniors

Mikela — HS Senior Portraiture

God is SO good!

What do you get when you take a lovely young lady,

a stunning copper-brown gown

and a crazy-beautiful field of red clover…

I’ll tell you…

You get a super-fun, amazingly stunning senior session!

But before it sounds like I’m tooting my own horn… let me tell you a bit about what transpired before this session started…

Right before the session my Mom called to let me know my Dad’s melanoma was back {for the third time}. However, this time it was a different type… that still confuses me.

Needless to say my mind was not as focused as it is normally.

In fact, I was on auto pilot.

Thankfully I had rehearsed in my mind the types of images I wanted to capture ahead of time.

Praying for every session is critical:

…for my clients,

…for wisdom and guidance,

…that what I create would be a blessing,

…and that God would be honored in all I say and do.

But this session…

Oy vey…

I prayed I would just remember my settings!

Things that normally come naturally to me required all my focus…

I started to get overwhelmed and Mikela wasn’t even there yet.

Quickly I emailed several of my photographer friends to ask them to pray for the session, too.

I knew my brain wouldn’t be working at its normal capacity.

And it totally wasn’t.

But God is SO good.

Just look what He allowed me to be a part of creating!

Dispite all that was going on in my heart and mind, photographing Mikela was a delight. She is so sweet and intelligent. We had so much fun chatting as we posed and set up different shots.

She really wanted some dark, dramatic clouds and thankfully God even arranged the perfect ones for us to capture.

I love that God even cares about the little details.

The time with Mikela was such a blessing…

A break from what was going on with my Dad,

time with an amazing young lady

and much needed laughter and smiles!

She probably doesn’t realize how much she blessed me during that session.

She completely stunning {inside and out} and is such a genuine and fun young lady.

I know God planned the timing of my Mom’s call and the session.

He knew I would need to shoot and that Mikela would be the perfect subject.

Now, what I wasn’t prepared for was the overwhelming response to her images.

I am so deeply humbled by everyone’s kind words.

Thank you so much for all the wonderful comments on my Facebook page.

It means more to me than you will ever know!

When people tell me I’m amazing… I often reply,

“I’m not amazing, God is amazing… I’m just available.”

 

{For those of you who were wondering, yes, the Silent Words post

http://staceetaft.com/silent-words/

was promted by the news about my Dad.

But I have a happy update:

my Dad had his surgery and his margins were clear… praise God!

We get to keep him around for a while longer!

Insert BIG happy dance and a really BIG smile!}

 

And a HUGE thanks to my new farmer friend who graciously allowed me to shoot in his amazing field.

Categories
Glamour Just a Thought...

You are Beautiful!

With so much to share, it’s difficult to write just a single blog post. Yet today it’s clear what I want to share: the reason for my photography business.

When I first talk to people about what I do, they often assume, it’s ‘for the money.’ Of course, they aren’t being rude or disrespectful… they just haven’t heard my heart yet.

Originally, I created Stacee Taft Photography simply to capture beauty in the people and settings around me. However, I had not anticipated it capturing me… in a passion for people to see their own beauty.

I firmly believe that you are beautiful and I have the privilege of using my portraiture skills to prove it.

I don’t do this by transforming what you look like, but rather, how you view yourself.

This was my motivation for designing The Glamour Portraiture Experience. Geared mostly toward us moms who are worn out caring for those around us, with little time to recharge or pamper ourselves, this special session is designed to spoil you. My professional hairstylist and make-up artist helps bring out your best features and make you feel incredible. {Thankfully she uses waterproof mascara because most of us tear up when we realize we are so… beautiful.} Then comes the fun part, digitally capturing the moment… stylized to match your style and vision; we capture images that are tasteful enough to share with everyone while still stunning, fabulous and ah-maz-ing! The feedback I have gotten from my clients regarding these sessions makes me happy-cry. By the time they are viewing their images at their big reveal… they get it… they are beautiful! Mission accomplished.

These days we’re constantly bombarded with what beauty is supposed to be; enough so that most of us simply give up with a sigh and assume “beauty” is not attainable – for us. Well… I’m here to tell you, you ARE beautiful… and it has very little to do with what you look like!

Surprised to hear that coming from a professional photographer? Well, don’t be. I firmly believe that everyone is beautiful. I believe because we are created in the image of our Creator we are beautiful. Whether accentuated by physical features, character traits, a sparkle from within or a unique personality… everyone has something beautiful about them. And it’s my passion to stage and capture what makes you beautiful so you can appreciate your beauty.

My goal by the end of every session is for my clients to walk away feeling cherished and valuable… all while having a ton of fun capturing images they will enjoy for years to come.

I realize I get sort of crazy-passionate about this topic. But I want you to know — I mean really, really know — how meaningful you are! It matters so much to me that you believe you have worth and value. YOU matter that much to me…