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Friday, October 1, 2010

Fall 2010 Promotion - Mini Family Sessions

It's that time of year again! Fall is just around the corner and it's one of the best times of year for family portraits. Everything from the colors, weather, to clothing, is just perfect! From now until November 19th I'll be offering mini sessions for family portraits. The session includes 15 edited and retouched photos, fit to a slideshow, plus 25 custom-designed fine-art holiday cards!

Spaces are limited so call or email to book your session today! 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Images by Michele launches NEW WEBSITE!!!

I loved my last website which I designed in Adobe Flash but there were several issues with it. First, since it was in Flash, in order to view it you had to download Flash. This doesn't seem like a huge issue but anything Apple-based doesn't support Flash. Sooo...all the new iPhones or iPads would not be able to view my website. The other problem with it was that it was very hard to update. The third issue was that since it was in Flash the text was not searchable.

I've been busy over this last year with my photography clients and I really had no time to dedicate to redesigning my site. I asked my friend and fellow graphic designer, Holly Harter ( to redesign my site. I barely had time to even work on the stuff I needed to get to her for her to move forward but she gave me deadlines and I had to make sure I met them. I absolutely love the new site! It does everything the last site didn't and it has sooo much more information. I spent an hour updating some sections that would've normally taken days.

Comment and let me know what you think!! Also check out Holly's website and check out her work:

Here's a screen shot of the site:

Carolina Beach - Labor Day Weekend

We try to visit Wilmington at least 2 times a year and now that I'm living here too we try to visit more often. In the past we've always gone to Wrightsville Beach but the last few trips have been to Carolina Beach. 

Our friend Brad owns Surfhouse Cafe and Surf Shop in Carolina Beach so we get to visit him and the shop while we vacation. The food is phenomenal!! A personal favorite is the Turkey Cuban's to die for. In November his shop will be featured in the prestigious Southern Living magazine! In winter months they serve specialty hot chocolates that have gained crazy attention. They also bring back their mushroom sandwich which I've been craving since last year! Needless to say I'm already planning our October trip back! Here's a few images from our recent trip:

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Trip to Guatemala

A few months back I decided to surprise my best friend Tiana by showing up in Guatemala a few days before her 30th birthday. She has been living there since last October and she was a little sad that she wouldn't be able to spend her 30th with her close friends or family. For my 30th birthday, she made me the most unbelievable YouTube video and I decided immediately after watching it that I needed to go to Guatemala and surprise her.

Tiana had some slight suspicions but I called her the day before my arrival and threw her off my scent. She was totally surprised when I showed was perfect! We spent the next few days hanging out in Quetzaltenango (Xela), walking through the town, picking up food for dinner in the markets, drinking "atol" (hot, sweet, corn drink), going on hikes, and just catching up. 

At 6:00 am, on the day of her birthday, we hiked up a mountain with Don Carlos, a Mayan spiritual guide. We discovered that morning that based on the day I was born, my Mayan spirit (nahaul) is "Aj" and it was actually that day, Tiana's birthday! A coincidence? I think not! The ceremony was awesome and I could write pages and pages on it. I actually journaled almost every detail of my trip and I'm going to create a book with photos. We ate cheese and crackers and wine, then went to a spa for 3 hours, got ready and went to her friend Willy's opening night of his new restaurant. It was a perfect day and night and I was so happy to be able to celebrate with her. 

We spent a few days at Lago Atitlan, which took 3 "chicken buses" and 3.5 hours to get to. The buses are so named because there are often animals accompanying the passengers. We stayed in a really nice hotel the first night and spent the next day taking a boat ride around the lake and visiting 3 different villages. It was awesome! The night before I left we decided to stay in a cheaper hotel...not the best decision! We discovered a huge spider problem and at 2:30-6:00 in the morning, about every 30 minutes, we were abruptly woken up to cackling roosters. If I didn't physically see them in the courtyard, I would have bet my life they were actually in our room! Hahah! It was a great trip and I had sooo much fun...even the roosters just add to the story!

Take a look at a few of may favorite photos from the trip and Tiana's birthday video:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Surprise Trip to Ocracoke Island, Outer Banks, NC

A few weeks back Teddy surprised me with a trip to Ocracoke Island. I had no clue where we were going so I packed a little bit of everything. Even when I pulled out the map and saw which direction we were going, it still didn't help.

Once we got to Ocracoke, I was really excited. We were going to spend the next few days doing nothing! We both brought our laptops because realistically, there was no way we could not do any work. We stayed at a really nice bed and breakfast and after the first night, we moved upstairs into a really nice room.

Each day we had breakfast, did a hour or two of work, grabbed lunch, and then headed to the beach once the sun started to go down. The great thing about the Outer Banks and Ocracoke in particular is the unbelievably beautiful beaches. We would drive miles down the road until we couldn't see any cars and then park, climb over a sand dune, and basically have a private beach to ourselves. We saw tons of dolphins and took full advantage of relaxing. Here are a few of my favorite images from the trip.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Playing with Video - Tristyn singing Scooby Dooby Doo

My nephew is sooo freakin adorable. One day a couple of months ago, I was having kind of a bad day. I was rushing all over the place and feeling really stressed. Just as I was getting out of the car, my sister called to tell me that my nephew, Tristyn, had something he wanted to share with his "Crazy Antie Shells." He sang "Scooby Dooby Doo" and I was on the floor laughing so hard. It completely brightened my day and I kept calling for a new song. As any 5-year-old would do, sometimes he'd sing it, sometimes not.

On my last trip to Connecticut I decided I would video tape him so I could watch it whenever I wanted. Of course I had to do it on his the living room with the fan. This was my very first video off my Canon 5D Mark II so it's a little rough...but it does the trick. I can now watch Scooby Dooby Doo whenever I want. I thought I'd share it with all of you so you could have a good laugh!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Week at the Beach - Carolina Beach, North Carolina

A couple weeks ago we went to Carolina Beach for the week. Every year we try to go at least one week. It's always an awesome time, hanging out with friends, relaxing on the beach, and of course, delicious food!

We dined several meals at our friend's store/cafe, Surf House. If you ever get a chance to visit Carolina Beach, you have to check out this place. The Turkey Cuban is unbelievable! If you make it to breakfast on the weekends, try the House Hash. It's loaded with potatoes, cheese, garlic, bacon, ham, and then topped with a fried egg. It sounds kind of funny but it is soooo good!

One night we cooked in and had a shrimp boil or some call it a "a low-country boil." The basic ingredients are shrimp, spicy chicken sausage, mini corn-on-the-cobs, potatoes, garlic (lots of garlic), mushrooms, and then packets of spicy shrimp boil seasoning. It was delicious! Everything cooks together in the pot and is seasoned to perfection. Our batch was soooo hot...I think we used too many seasoning packets! My nose was literally dripping! It was great but if I ever cook it on my own, I'll take out a packet or two!

I can't go anywhere (especially vacation) without my camera. Here's a few of my favorites from the trip:

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

It's Been Too Long...

Ok, ok, so when I decided to start a blog I vowed that I wouldn't be one of those people that writes a bunch in the beginning and then trails off. It's not that I have nothing to write about, I've just been really busy this last month. I will try not to wait another month before a new post.  Here's what's been going on:

  1. My birthday promotion was a huge hit! I even had 7 photoshoots in one week! I'll definitely be creating more promotions like that one!
  2. On May 8th it was one year since we closed on our new house.
  3. Jasina finished her last JV soccer game...I was sad the season ended... :(
  4. I had a major stomach bug...the B.R.A.T diet totally works! Bananas, rice, apple sauce, and toast!
  5. I planted my first flowers ever! Let's just see if they stay alive!
  6. Oh...and I turned 30! Ahhhhh!!! I had a great day! It started with breakfast in bed and then I spent the afternoon at the pool. Jessy surprised me with a pedicure and then we went out for an awesome dinner at Copper (Indian). Tiana sent me an awesome video for my birthday...check it out:

Here are some favorite photos I took during the last month:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Nice Souvenir From My Vacation in Tampa!

Last week Jessy and I decided to take a road trip to visit my sister and nephews in Florida. We had absolutely perfect weather and my sister took us to some gorgeous beaches. Siesta Key has white powdered sand and crystal clear water. I'm just used to burning hot sand that makes your feet feel like they're bleeding! This was a very nice change. We also went to Anna Maria Island for a day and it was sooo beautiful...and the sunset was the cherry on top! I also got a little work done and even had time for a photoshoot!

On our final day in Florida we went to Universal Studios Islands of Adventure and had a blast! Hulk, Spiderman, Dueling Dragons, and The Doom are just crazy! One word of warning though, the "Fast Pass" is great to avoid lines but you can only use it once per ride...and it's an extra $40 on top of the $79 ticket price!

Now I must explain the title of my blog post. I try to stay out of the sun as much as I can and when I am in the sun I constantly reapply sunblock and also use sunblock chapstick. I do this for 2 reasons: 1) I had melanoma in my foot and my dermatologist would probably kill me if I showed up with tan lines. 2) I get really bad sun blisters on my lips. I managed to come home with just a slight tan but my lips however are another story! Instead of the usual big blister on one side of my top lip, I ended up with loooots of tiny little bumps all over my top and bottom lips!! Ahhhh!!

So...if you are prone to cold sores, I have a few tips I'd like to share. When I feel a cold sore coming on I take 2 L-Lysine pills (can be found in any drug-store) per day. It's a natural amino acid that promotes healthy collagen. Abreva, although very expensive, is the only cold sore medicine that gets rids of the problem fastest. Campho-Phenique is another pretty good alternative if you have time to let the blister run it's course. However, Abreva did not work this time for me. I think because it was from the sun and not from a change in weather, my normal methods didn't work. My lips were really itchy and dry and the Abreva made them even drier. To make a long story even longer, I tried Aquaphor -- which is actually the jelly that my doctor gave me after my foot surgery to keep my wound nice and moisturized. It sealed in moisture and my lips are back on track...thankfully...

I'll spare you photos of my busted lip and instead share with you a couple photos of the beautiful sunset on Anna Maria Island....

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Crazy Weekend!

This past weekend I ventured north for 3 photoshoots! I was so crazy busy that I literally had to schedule sleep! My journey began on Friday at 6:00 am...I had an early flight to Connecticut and as soon as I landed I sprinted to Hertz to get my rental car. I then drove to Milford, which is about an hour away.

The first photoshoot was awesome! Jen was looking to update her publicity photos and wanted some natural shots. Although it was cold, we went to 3 locations, including the beach. The clouds in the sky were really cool that day...streaks of white against extreme blue. I had to take a photo of it!

I left Jen and headed up to Waterbury to go to a Hibachi restaurant for my brother-in-law's birthday. It was awesome! Can't beat beer and wine, sushi, salad, soup, hibachi shrimp, and fried ice-cream for $35 (including tip!)

Saturday morning I had breakfast with my mom before she had to go to work and I had to travel onto my next photoshoot in NYC. I've photographed Marcella's wedding and separate reception so when she asked if I'd photograph her 2 baby showers I was thrilled! The first baby shower was in Brooklyn and it was unlike any baby shower I'd ever attended! It was held at Poppa's Place (Formerly Red Bamboo) and there must have been over 90 people at one time. The food was great (buffalo chicken wings and coconut shrimp were to die for!)!

After I snapped my last photo, I headed back to CT to hang out with another sister, brother-in-law, and nephew. On the way back from NYC I stopped and picked up a pizza from Vito's in Wolcott. After all, I'm not sure when the next time I'd be able to get it!! It was DELICIOUS!!!

I woke up early on Sunday and met my sister Jackie and niece Amanda out for breakfast. Although it was a quick visit it was awesome to catch up! Before the next baby shower, I stopped by my mom's to say goodbye and then headed to Naugatuck to check out Jessy's dad and his fiance's new business location. It's TLC Homecare LLC and they service the elderly, new mothers, recently injured, and also have a home-cleaning service as well. I'm so excited for their new storefront. It's in a great location with lots of traffic.

The final photo shoot of the weekend was really nice. It was different from the party the day before, but it was anything but traditional. Again, the food was outstanding! From fried cheese balls, to fruit salad, lasagna, meatballs, chicken wings, etc., I was a happy camper! The house was filled with love and of course, awesome music! They even hired someone to play the congas!

You'd think my weekend was over by this point, but I still had one stop to make. I met my friend (and fellow photographer, from Impressions Studio) Cindy out in New Haven at Ivy Noodle. They had some awesome noodle dishes for realllly cheap! While we were chatting and going over photography ideas I got an email from US Airways telling me my flight was delayed for almost and hour. I thought, pretty cool, now I don't have to rush. About 15 minutes later, I got another email telling me my flight was back on for 7:00! Ahhhhh! I had to rush out of there, drive from New Haven to Hartford in the rain, stop and get gas, and return the rental car. I made it just as they started boarding! We boarded on time, but the plane was delayed on the runway for 25 minutes. Once we were in the air I started editing the weekend's photos and right at the time we were originally supposed to land, the pilot let us know that we're in a holding pattern for at least another hour! Apparently there were crazy thunder and lightening storms plus a possible tornado watch in Charlotte! The good news is, we had enough gas to hold us over, I edited almost alllll of the photos, and we landed safely at 10:30 pm. I did see some lightening as we landed which is pretty scary from a plane!

What a whirlwind weekend! I needed sooo much sleep over the next few days and I'm just now back to my usual self! I had such a great time photographing beautiful events and getting to catch up with some family and friends! Below is a photo from Friday at the beach. I'll be uploading some photos from the other events next week.

Friday, March 12, 2010

My 30th Birthday Promotion!

My 30th birthday is coming up in May and while I'm not particularly thrilled about it, I thought this would be a great opportunity to offer a photo special. So, from now until my birthday (May 16th!!) sessions are just $30!!! It's really an unbelievable deal! Check out the info the photo to view larger:

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Giuseppe 02.20.2010

Giuseppe has been a frequent visitor to the studio since his birth...and oh wait...even before he was born! This time I wanted to focus on him alone and capture some more creative photos. My intention was to have some sleeping photos but when this cutie came in he did not want to sleep! The day before I texted his mom and asked her to bring some hats. That day she had just received this adorable hat! When I saw it I wanted to was the cutest thing!

Here's a few favorites from that day:

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Parisi Family

This is the 3rd session with the Parisi's. The first session, Giuseppe wasn't born yet...but for the 2nd and 3rd he became the star of the photoshoot! Of course the first thing you notice about this angel is his wild and crazy. But it's his eyes that draw you in...

Check out a few photos of this gorgeous family:


Saturday, February 6, 2010

A day in the park with Reese...

Reese is one of the most adorable little girls I've ever photographed. She reminds me of Michelle Tanner (the Olsen twins) from Full House. We went to the park and I basically chased her around wherever she went. Her favorite thing to say was "UP!" I could photograph her allll day long. I did need a nap afterward...

A link to the slideshow:

Here's a few of my favorites:

Kelly & Brian 1/16/2010

Kelly and Brian (along with their children and family) were so much fun to photograph. They had a very small, intimate wedding and it was so laid back. Everything started on their cue and and it couldn't have gone any smoother. After the ceremony we headed over to a nearby subdivision that had some awesome places to take photos! Kelly and Brian were having a lot of fun...with lots of smiles and kisses. I barely had to direct them! Below are a few of my favorites!

A slideshow to bunch more: