If you have something that sets your heart on fire with passion I'd say that's a good thing. It's better to feel too passionate about something than to be apathetic about everything. What sets your heart on fire? It's not an accident. This motorcycle session at Twin Oaks Conservation in Kissimmee with Allison was nothing short of amazing. If these make you feel strong than I did my job.
Film Photography has changed my heart in a whole new way. It has helped me see photography with new eyes. My heart bursts knowing that I can create photographs based on what I see in my mind, without much editing afterwards. I choose the stock of film I want, measure the light, adjust my shutter speed and wait for the results. It allows me to slow down, take in my surroundings and see exactly what I want to see before taking my next step.
Black and Whites: Tri-X400+1
Color: Portra 400 rated at 200 ISO
When I first received an email from Charmaine I knew we would be fast friends. You know that moment when you meet someone and it just flows. Every conversation is as if you've known each other for years. That's exactly the way it was from the moment I met Charmaine and Stanley. Their desire to serve the Lord and love people just overflows in everything they do! You just can't help but want to spend time with them because joy radiates all over them. I wanted to share a little glimpse of my time with them from their engagement to their wedding day. These are just a few of my favorites.
We took their engagement photos in downtown Sanford, FL.
Their Wedding day was so sweet!
"Dear Artist" Is a way for women creative entrepreneurs to form connections through sending encouraging letters and gifts to one another.
One afternoon as I was working at my desk a thought popped into my head, "What if I could figure out a way to connect creative women outside of social media in order for them to gain friendships and feel encouraged by one another?" I wanted it to be another way friendships could be developed but for it to go past a screen in front of you. That's when I began to create, "Dear Artist".
In the back of my closet I have a giant plastic box full of letters from my friends in middle school, high school and college. They have been stored away so I have them to go back to and re-read whenever I need a little encouragement. The letters range from sweet notes I received on my birthday to 3 page letters from friends who knew I was struggling at the time. Each letter grew a deeper connection with my friends.
The way "Dear Artist" will work is you'll enter your email address below and I will send you a form for you to fill out. The form has questions in order to help your pen pal get to know you a little better. Once you fill out the form I will connect you with another artist and at the first of every month you can send each other a little letter or gift encouraging them in their creative journey. We will send our first gift/letter to one another on June 1st. As you write to each other be sure to ask one another questions to further understand each other better. It will help you be able to encourage each other the best.
I'm super excited you're here and can't wait to see new friendships created. Let me know if you have any questions. I'm here to help. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, please share your letters and gifts if you'd like using the hashtag #lovedearartist! My hope is that more people will be connected past our Instagram app and love on one another a little more.
XOXO - Elli Jane
Water splashing, sun shining, the smell of Coppertone sunscreen filled our senses as we hopped into the canoe. The sun was beating down on us, taking in every minute to be in the silence of the cool springs with only the sound of trees rustling in the wind. We paddled along the springs, stopping every so often to photograph and really soak up the moment. These sessions are so much more than just beautiful photographs. They are an experience to rest, take time for yourself, buy new lingerie, feel beautiful and take in the sunshine.
The storm was rolling in, the wind picked up, the waves crashed a little harder, our feet got really wet as sand seeped between our toes. None of that really mattered other than the fact that these two just looked like a couple of teenagers, crazy in love! You'll see what I mean! Jetty Park Beach didn't dissappoint!
Rollins College never fails to provide beautiful backdrops and it doesn't hurt to have really pretty people too! I can't wait to be apart of your wedding day in August, Jenny and Zeljko!
My "Free as can be" sessions are an option for women interested in doing a boudoir shoot with me. These sessions are full of life, twirling, breathing in fresh air, celebrating that gorgeous body of yours and embracing the beauty of nature around you. Francheska and I ran down the red dirt roads of Clermont, twirling, laughing, pausing and really taking in every moment. It was freeing and exhilarating. Enjoy your life to the fullest!
MUAH: Kendall Crofoot
Model: Francheska Munoz
Location: Clermont, FL
I had the best time with Kristin Sweeting at my mentor session. She is one of the kindest people you'll ever meet. I can't get over how beautiful this styled session was. These were all photographed on the Contax 645 and Mamiya 645. I love film so much!
Mentor and planning by: Kristin Sweeting
Photography: Elli Jane Photography
Model: Karla Goodwin
Location: Rollins College
Florals: Katie Pollard
Dress: The Dress Theory
<iframe src="https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B503fkioV-ROc1RPTEYtNHBYb1U/preview" width="640" height="480"></iframe>Read More
I believe with all of my heart that the Lord uses testimonies as a way to not only point people back to Him but as a way to encourage and give people hope. I want to share a little bit of my health story with you with the intention of encouraging you.
That dark purple spiral notebook was dated, "August 23rd, 2006 with the title, 'My Testimony at 15 years old' and it started like this, "Am I really beautiful like some people have told me?"
At the ages 14-15 I struggled with anorexia. I lost 30lbs in 6 months from not eating. It got to the point that I was so skinny my parents told me if I didn't start eating again they would have to take me to the hospital. I never remember thinking I looked sickly. At the same time I never remember feeling satisfied or pretty even after losing so much weight. I was never fat before I lost the 30lbs either. Now looking back I wish that I had seen myself the way Christ saw me. The way my family and friends saw me. That I had rested in the fact that I was beautifully made and what I thought of as flaws like being tall with broad shoulders was actually a benefit.
At the age of 18 I went away to college with the excitement that I was free and independent. I could do what I wanted when I wanted and eat whatever I wanted! I would resort to fruit loops most nights, with a side of icecream and pizza. Most mornings I'd eat donuts and drink numerous amounts of coffee. My water intake was very small. At this point in my life I was the farthest thing from physically active. Running? I would hope that running to my classes counted as exercise. The poor choices of food I ate combined with no physical activity caused so many digestive problems. Meaning, I would go 4 or 5 days, sometimes a week not being able to go to the bathroom. Let's talk about pain I hope no one has to experience. Finally, about a year later I started running and eating better. This immediately started the process of healing my digestive issues. It's amazing to me how the Lord created our bodies to heal themselves by simply feeding it natural foods and exercising.
Let's skip to today... I now eat gluten free because of my bodies inability to process wheat foods and the past couple weeks I have been eating Paleo (except for Thanksgiving day 😉). I have felt so much more energized, my skin has significantly cleared up and my stomach no longer bloats. For those of you who are unsure what Paleo is it's cutting out, gluten, grains, dairy, processed sugars and hydrogenated oils like Canola and Vegetable oils. Then you incorporate complex carbs, fresh or frozen veggies, fruit, nuts, healthy fats and lean meat like chicken, turkey and beef.
Starting today after coming back from Thanksgiving break I'm starting a 28 day challenge, The Lean Fit Project through Advocare. I'm so excited about what I've already started using. Along with doing Paleo (an anti-inflammatory diet), I'm incorporating Spark which is full of vitamins and has some caffeine in it to get me started for the day instead of coffee, a variety of vitamins you take like Fish oil, a probiotic for gut health, a vitamin to help curb your appetite, and Advogreens chocolate, meal replacement shake to drink when life is crazy. I already feel energized with my Spark and can't wait to see how many body changes and grows stronger. I'll be done Christmas Eve! Just in time for Christmas Day 🤗!
As I think back over my life and struggles I had with self-confidence, digestive problems, the struggle of cutting out gluten and dairy to find a cure for my acne and constant bloating I just keep thinking God was always and stills is in control. I can't tell you how many times I have prayed for a solution for my skin issues and the desire to feel good and beautiful about myself even though I would work out at least 5 days a week. He has helped me understand that fueling your body with the right kinds of foods and vitamins heals your body and helps it function the way that it was meant to. There's always an answer friends. Don't lost hope if you've struggled with or maybe are struggling with health issues right now. Start small and incorporate foods that are in the produce and meat section. If you need encouragement I would love to help you in whatever what I can. We are in it together!
I remember this day like it was just yesterday. I was in a funk, rut, hole, or pit, whatever you want to call it. I felt like someone had come up to me and sucked all the life out of me. You know those days where you’re just not inspired at all and you feel like you have nothing to give back to the world? I was supposed to go mow and make money but instead of making plans to work I stopped at Wawa on my way out of town and grabbed a black coffee and a Quest bar. With my two film cameras shoved in my passenger seat I decided to go on an adventure. I was going to drive to the beach (which is about an hour drive from where I live) and stop anywhere and everywhere to photograph what I loved. Let’s just say I stopped at a lot of cow pastures and dirt roads. The farm girl was coming out of me.
Then I made it to the beach. I set up my umbrella and sat there listening to the crashing of the waves as my hair blew in the wind whichever way it wanted to go. I pulled my blue, plastic Holga (a $35 film camera) out of my bag and went to finishing my roll. As I was sitting in the water waiting for a perfect shot to come my way I prayed that the Lord would send a bird for me to photograph. They were flying all around me but whenever I went to pick up my camera I would miss them and with the Holga everything is tricky about getting a good photograph. There isn’t a way to automatically focus and you have to stand a certain amount of feet away to get the photograph. All that to say God sent me this bird you see and I snapped that photograph proudly. Given at the time I had NO idea if it would come out but it did. He is so kind to me.
All the photographs I received back from this roll are my favorite Holga photos I’ve ever taken? I really believe it’s because they weren’t forced or rushed. I was in my happy place photographing what I wanted. We all need grace not only to extend toward other people but toward ourselves too. If you’re feeling discouraged that you aren’t making anything all inspiring then plan to take a break. Take a break from what you’re constantly doing and go create or do something that makes you feel alive again!
A year ago I was horrified at the thought of turning 25 and then it happened. I think the reason I was so sad to turn that particular age was because I felt like I hadn’t accomplished everything I thought I would have by then. Then my friend told me this is going to be the best year of my life. Guess what! She was completely right.
I am a little under a month away from turning 26 and this time it’s not so scary. I really believe it’s because I have goals and plans whereas last year just the thought of turning 25 paralyzed me with fears that I’d never be where I wanted. I was just bummed everyone was getting engaged or married while I was just pulling my couch cushions off the couch to try and find spare change to pay my electric bill and shoving a bag of popcorn in the microwave for supper lol. Real LIFE haha! It was such a hard season let me tell you! I felt this weight loneliness, worry and inadequacy unlike ever before. Then my mom advised me to ask the Lord for me to see what He saw for my life and ask him for an expectant heart.
About a month later I started to have this increased desire to travel and experience places outside of my little town unlike ever before. It was as if a light bulb went off. “I am still young, not tied down by anyone or anything and am in a place where I can travel to the places I’ve always wanted to see.” Immediately after this revelation I started researching all the places I wanted to see and to pray big. Since then I have had the privilege of going out of Florida at least five different times in 2016. For some people that might seem small, for others it might seem a lot, but to me I see it as an answer to prayer and the grace of God. I am amazed honestly!!! My list of places continues to grow with each passing day and the joy of saving for those trips is overwhelming.
When you hit your twenties no professor, parent or friend can prepare you for what you might experience. There’s no handbook that says, “This is what will happen to you and here’s how you should respond.” It doesn't tell you that you'll more than likely live paycheck to paycheck for a while and that rice and beans will be your daily meal. Life just happens and you roll with the punches.
If there are a few things I’ve learned about how great your twenties is that you are still young enough to see and experience amazing things. You’re a little bit wiser than you were when you are fresh out of high school. You make your own decisions and determine how you want your life to go. Last but not least it’s all on you and that means if you really want something than you can make it happen! You can turn your dreams into reality. Never give up friends and if your terrified of your mid twenties I understand but I want you to know it’s pretty great if you choose to make it great!
What are some things you've learned in your twenties?
My friend Bekkah and Josh came down from Tennessee for a mini vacation and I was blessed enough to not only see them but photograph them as well! We went to Wekiwa Springs and got eaten up by Mosquitos and smacked each other lovingly over and over to try to get them off of each other. I went knee deep into the cool springs and we soaked up the warm sun as we canoed in the water. It was a beautiful day with good friends!
I met with Nick and Lauren at Twin Oaks Reservation in Kissimmee to have a last minute photo session before they headed off to Ohio for a new adventure! These two were so fun to photograph and their faces were beaming with joy and smiles the whole time. I hope you both are staying warm up north!
This family has my heart. I loved doing this in-home session and running around the sprinklers with you all. I love real-life people and this session was as real as it gets.
She believed she could, so she did.
Max Patch Mountain I love you. Mariah and Brandon I loved photographing you guys here. Chemistry and mountains equals BOW CHICA WOW WOW! That's all I've got to say. Enjoy!
I know it's been a while since I've blogged. I'm working on catching you all up on what I've been working on. This session of Yesenia and Jeremy couldn't have gone any better. We dodged the rain thank goodness! The overcast weather led to some moody, rich images though that I couldn't wait to share. You guys are seriously so stunning and were so much fun to work with! I can't wait for your wedding next spring. Enjoy!
These two were so much fun to photograph. Not only are they beautiful together, their love for each other was very evident and sincere. They adored each other and there's nothing better than that! Congratulations you two! I loved meeting you both and getting to photograph you guys!