Day 2 of my Lensbaby 365 Challenge!
Today Lee and I went skeet shooting near Siloam Springs with the Arkansas Young Republicans. My parents are in town visiting, so they joined us. It was something else watching my mom learn how to shoot! She did great. I admit that I have very little experience shooting anything other than a Nikon, but I was thrilled when I hit two clay pigeons! It was a beautiful, bright day, so of course I had to shoot with my camera as well. More on this soon, but I am absolutely in LOVE with my new Lensbaby Velvet 56!
It was a really great group. The kids were some of the best shots there! I have to include a couple of non-Lensbaby “bonus photos” of my folks shooting — I never thought I’d see this!
My Dad blended right in with the locals in his plaid shirt, jeans, and camouflage baseball cap. He grew up in New York and New England and now lives in Florida, but one of the gentlemen we met at the event thought he recognized my Dad from around town!
My mom got a lesson from the Rangemaster (the awesome guys from the Ecclesia College Shooting Sports Team were there to help us and make it a safe and fun event!). I love the photo on the right – you can see the smoke and the shell casing still falling from her gun!
UPDATE: Congratulations to Danielle Jansen! You won the Lensbaby Mobile LM-10 and Phone clip! I can’t wait to see what you do with it and how you #SeeInANewWay!
Thank you so much to everyone who participated for commenting and sharing your stories. It was really wonderful to see how photography has positively impacted your lives! And another huge thank you to all my friends, family, clients, and followers for your support this past year. I couldn’t have done it without you, and I’m so excited for Year 2 and many more!
The other day, I was sorting through a box of treasures I kept from my childhood home in upstate New York and found my “first photograph” — at least, the first photograph I took that I deemed worthy of being framed and saved. I must have taken it sometime in the late 1980s — probably spring 1987 or 1988 — with my Dad’s old Pentax K1000 that he gave me around that time. I would have been 7 or 8 years old. I can’t remember exactly the year I took it, or what the type of film was, or even the precise location of the photo, but I remember with crystal clarity seeing it for the first time mounted on its acid-free mat in its flowery pink and gold frame.
That was the first time I ever felt like “an artist.”
The image in my “first framed photograph,” the horses from the farm next door to where I grew up. Taken in Granville, New York, circa 1988.
Looking at that photograph more than 25 years later I still love it because it brings back the best of my childhood. (And it reminds me of the incredibly gorgeous color you get with film!) Playing in those woods behind our house with my brother and the Heitkamp kids next door, naming every little rock and stream and making elaborate maps (of the girls’ “territories” and the boys’ “territories”), working with my Mom on hugely elaborate school art projects, reading every book I could get my hands on, listening to my Dad play Beethoven on the piano at night. You would never see these things in this photo, but I do — not because they are written in light on a piece of photo paper, but because they are the images on my heart every time I pick up a camera.
In just 3 days, on May 5, Soraya Rudofsky Photography LLC will be 1 year old. I can hardly believe how the time flies. When I left the practice of law five years ago to follow my dream of becoming an artist, this hardly seemed possible. I have so many people to thank for making it come true. I will never be able to repay my husband for his incredible love and support – especially through the late nights, the frustrations, my insane perfectionism in pursuit of an image when I wanted to get “just one more,” days when he came home and the house is a mess and I’m still in my pajamas editing at the computer – and for his caring and celebrating with me when an image somehow comes together the way I imagined it. I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to my parents, in-laws, siblings, all of my family and friends, mentors, teachers, fellow photographers, fans and followers on social media, and my incredible models and clients who have shared their stories and magic with me (and for being so good looking!). Thank you all so much for supporting me and my business in this amazing year.
It’s time to celebrate!
I decided that to kick off Year 2, it’s time to start a project I’ve been planning for a while. If you’ve read my blog, you know I love everything Lensbaby. Lensbaby‘s slogan is “See In A New Way” and that is truly what they have done for me – I see the world differently now, and I love sharing that new perspective. So, this year I’m going to See My Life In A New Way, by taking and sharing a new photograph with one of my Lensbaby lenses each and every day for a full year!
But, because the journey is so much more fun with friends, I would like to invite you to do this project with me! And, to make that possible, I’ve decided to gift one of my favorite photography tools to one of my readers — the Lensbaby LM-10 mobile phone lens with a Lensbaby iPhone Mount!
The Lensbaby LM-10 mobile is an awesome little lens. It fits in your pocket, and you can put it on your phone with the Lensbaby iPhone Mount (yes, featuring Yukon on the packaging)! I hope it will help you see your life in a new way, and feel like an artist everyday.
An iPhone selfie of me holding the LM-10 Lensbaby Mobile Phone lens. A huge thank you to Lensbaby and the awesome Abbie Kirkpatrick for the fantastic shades!
To enter this giveaway, all you need to do is comment on this blog post about a photo that is meaningful to you or a time when photography changed your life in a positive way, and login to Rafflecopter to tell it that you commented (which is how I keep track). One entry per person, but you have from now until 12:00 am May 8th CST to enter. On May 8th (after entries are closed) I’ll pick a random winner from the comments using Rafflecopter. All of the rules and specific information are in the entry form below.
Thank you all – and have a happy May!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Welcome to Day 1 of my brand new Lensbaby 365 project, where I will learn to See My Life In A New Way! With this project, I am taking a photo with one of my Lensbaby lenses every day and posting it for y’all to see! I started this project to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of my business, Soraya Rudofsky Photography LLC, which is coming up on May 5!
There are so many things I love about Lensbaby lenses. I love how the selective focus leads your eye to what’s important and meaningful, and how the rest is blurred away. I love the movement the Sweet 35 and Double Optic add to an image. I love the magical and ethereal quality of the Velvet 56. And I especially love being able to have that in my pocket with the LM-10 mobile lens! To me, Lensbaby lenses express visually how it feels to dance through the world.
Here I am in my favorite hoodie with my lineup of Lensbaby Lenses:
From right to left: the LM-10 Lensbaby Mobile, Double Glass Optic, Fisheye Optic, Sweet 35 Optic, and Composer Pro with Edge 80 optic. And that’s the NEW Lensbaby Velvet 56 on my Nikon d610 that I’m holding.
**Join me on this journey! I’m giving away a Lensbaby Mobile LM-10 lens and iPhone Mount to a lucky reader who comments on my blog! To enter, click here to go to my post Celebrating Firsts and comment with a story about a favorite photograph or a time when photography had a positive impact on your life.**
And here we are, Day 1 of 365:
The first rose to bloom on my rosebush outside my front door. Taken with the Nikon d600 and Lensbaby Velvet 56.
A couple of weeks ago I had the privilege to participate in a very special event. Audrey’s Home of Hope is a new women’s shelter here in Northwest Arkansas that provides shelter and support to pregnant women in crisis needing a safe temporary home. On August 9th, the organization celebrated the Grand Opening of Audrey’s Resale Boutique — a lovely store selling donated furniture, clothing and accessories — to fund the shelter and its mission! Although unfortunately I wasn’t able to make it to the ribbon cutting itself, the event was still packed when I got there! It was amazing to see such incredible community support, which is no doubt thanks to the awesome efforts of the organizers, Rosie Tucker, Jennifer Lemerise, Fran Olsen, Becca Farrell and all of the wonderful volunteers and folks who donated so many beautiful items to sell in the boutique as well as raffle prizes for the opening.
And, as you’ll see in the photos below, the boutique is lovely – somewhere I will be excited to shop often!
Audrey’s Resale Boutique is located at 1731 Forrest Hills Boulevard in Bella Vista (located next door to the Subway in the Highlander Shopping Center). The hours of operation are: Monday through Friday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm and Saturday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Find out more about their Audrey’s Home of Hope’s mission, how you can donate to the Resale Boutique, and more at their website, www.audreyshomeofhope.org or by visiting their Facebook page.
While I was in Brazil this winter, I had the privilege of photographing a beautiful, smart, funny, and athletic 10 year old girl. Gabriela is a rising star! She’s a comedic genius (I LOVE the video skits and comedic photo composites she puts together with just her phone!), and always upside down climbing or cartwheeling. In anticipation of her 11th birthday — which she celebrated yesterday — we went to Ibirapuera park in São Paulo, Brazil, and spent a lovely morning skateboarding, rollerblading, climbing, reading, and twirling. It was so much fun!
Gabriela is always super active — she loves to skateboard and rollerblade. She did great a great job showing me her turns and tricks! Love her beautiful smile as she jumps for joy!
I am not an athlete, though I am trying to expand my horizons and go on new adventures. Gabriela is way ahead of me — this girl loves to climb, cartwheel, and generally try anything new and challenging. She’s both a dancer and a gymnast, and is interested in someday learning circus acrobatics!
But the most beautiful thing about her is on the inside – she is incredibly thoughtful and kind. She’s the girl who – without prompting from anyone – will go and light a candle for a family member who is ill, send a message to cheer up your day, or find a way to make you smile.
Happy Birthday Gorgeous! Shine on.
Check out the video of Gabriela’s full photo shoot:
Interested in booking a session like this one for a special kid in your life? Contact me today!