off in the distance I could see a man with a capricious mustache and top hat. He reached for the hand of a tall blond in a chestnut colored corset. It was as if I was transported to the very pages of a Victorian-era fiction novel. This was to good to be true. This was not a mirage, this was my 10AM appointment with Rhonda and Jake for an engagement session. THEY LOOKED AMAZING!!! They captured the essence of Steampunk fashion! We would spend our time photographing with old steam trains and a stylized set provided by Touched By Time Vintage Rental. What I loved most about photographing Jake and Rhonda, was witnessing how much they love one another. I’ll have you know, chivalry is not dead! Maybe Jake is from the victorian era???? He is a gentleman. The type of gentleman you would find in a love novel! Rhonda and Jake, congrats on your engagement!!! I am so happy you found one another. It makes for a great TRUE love story.
Be Minked once again 🙂 We are excited to be featured!!!! Check out this link for a full scoop of the feature:)
I had a splendid time with first time expecting parents Courtney & Jason! The Vondenberger’s due date was April 4th. Last time I spoke with Courtney, they were still waiting on baby boy Evan Michael! Courtney and Jason have been together 7 years. They are so excited for their family to expand! Courtney was 36 weeks during the maternity session. I asked her what she loved most about pregnancy. “The spirituality of it. Thinking about moments yet to come.” The best piece of advice she could give baby Evan is “Love God, live humbly and be an honest man.” What a smart mama! The best piece of advice the Vondenberger’s could give to expecting parents is “Cherish every moment, good or bad. Be open with each other. Keep each other involved and equally engaged in this experience.” Prayers to Courtney, Jason and baby Evan. I wish you a safe delivery and a mellow journey to Nashville.
Courtney — Thank you for not going into labor on our little adventure!
In a month Jenny and Frank will give their lives to one another. I am beyond excited for them and was honored to photograph their engagement session! Jenny and Frank are the kind of couple everyone loves. Fun, laid back, adventurous and sweet! I truly believe soul-mates have found one another! Digital cupid brought Jenny and Frank together through Eharmony. “Since we met on line, our first date was really the first time we met in person. That always comes with some awkwardness but this time it went amazingly well. We met for drinks at Jakes in Del Mar and spent hours talking with realizing how much time went by. Our second date quickly followed, we had dinner and a moon light picnic in La Jolla. It was on feb 29th (leap year). We really count that as when we started dating. I think Frank planned it all along to make anniversaries only once every 4years :-).” After a year of dating Frank whisk away Jenny for a weekend of anniversary celebration. Frank took Jenny to Coronado for a romantic gondola ride. “It seemed like it was out of a movie, the sun setting, the gondolier singing and the man of my dreams proposing with my grandmothers ring.” CAN I JUST SAY I AM swooned!
The Engagement Session:
Jenny and Frank describe themselves as a laid back, fun loving, silly, creative and just a little bit of FUNKY couple! Knowing this … we knew we would have the green light to construct an out of the box engagement session! Let the fun begin! Jenny and Frank wanted to depict an older version of themselves! Having tons of vintage props provided by Lucky Street Production, a loving, knitting and ironing housewife and a taken care of happy hubby was brought to the table, as an idea. The session overall had a 50’s hubby and housewife vibe. A vintage kissing booth was also used as a photo prop.
Jenny and Frank I wish you a long healthy life of love, respect, kindness, successes and romance together!!! Congratulation!!! You guys have found your match!
Photography: London Light Photography / Sydney Takeshta
Hair & Make up Artistry: Pauline Castillo
Stylist/Props: Madam Palooza
Love, chandeliers and billy goats, theses are a few of my favorite things. Spent an exceptionally gorgeous Monday morning at Two Sisters Farms, photographing the soon to be Mr. & Mrs. Phipps. Tammy & Kyle’s engagement session was nothing short of spectacular! Touched by Time Vintage Rentals fashioned the awesome idea of “Breakfast in Bed”. The bed of the truck would be used as a platform for the lovely breakfast scene. Tammy rocked a scarlet red plaid long sleeve, red lips and a black crinoline like skirt . Kyle wore a white button up, black suspenders and a pair of jeans. Together they looked beyond adorable! I spent a good portion of the session laughing because of how lovey dovey Tammy and Kyle are together. There was a lot of eye contact, kissing and hugging between them. They have amazing chemistry:) Clearly, soul mates have found one another. Tammy and Kyle, I’m looking forward to photographing your wedding in April!!!!
Location: Two Sisters Farms
Styling and Props: Touched by Time Vintage Rentals
Hair/Make-up Artistry: Pauline Castillo
Photographer: Sydney Takeshta
It’s about to get deep. I was asked 5 months ago if I would be interested in displaying my photographs at a local gallery. I was ecstatic, and accepted the offer. Immediately I began thinking about photographs I would like to feature. Personally Photography has always been more than a business. First and four-most It’s art. Through my art, I am able to bare my soul. The majority of my work focuses in on families, maternity and newly weds. Through my clients my goal has always been to capture the beauty of love. This is my most favorite piece of my heart to share. I am blessed to have been able to hold and photograph countless newborns. I am blessed to watch in love couples promise forever to one another. I am blessed to witness the chemistry within multiple families, and experience laughter with them. Those moments bring such joy to my heart. Of course I would share some of these moments at my gallery showing. However, there is so much more that my heart has been through in the past year. It would feel fake to not create photographs that are on my heart to create. So here we go ….
It’s difficult to accept the dreadful truth. Heroin, the most deadly drug in the world is on the rise, and it’s knocking on the doors of suburbia. It may sound a little bold of me to start out with such a negative in your face statement, but it’s the truth. It’s closer to home than what you think. From my own personal conversations with local law enforcement, Riverside County is no acceptation. According to Time Magazine, “Heroin use has been rising since 2007, growing from 373,000 yearly users to 669,000 in 2012, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Heroin overdose deaths have also spiked, increasing 45% from 2006 to 2010, according to the most recently available data from the Drug Enforcement Administration. And the geography of the drug’s users has also expanded. Once considered a largely urban problem, law enforcement and public health officials are seeing an uptick in suburban and rural users.” I was completely oblivious to this sneaking snake, until it slithered in my own backyard. Watching my young loved one deal with the claws of addiction was all to painful. In 2013 I dedicated my time to working in homeless shelters. There I witness many struggling with addiction. Addiction is something in my life I feel I’m being called to stand against. I decided to open up about this issue, because.. ..not many do. Addicts and their family members are ashamed. This is not a matter to sweep under the rug. I decided to create photographs that show my perspective of heroin addiction.
In my photographs a woman in black embodies the addition Heroin. The addiction never takes her eyes off of her prey. She rejoices in his failures. She changes his perspective. She covers his ears and eyes. His soul focus is his sweetheart, Heroin. She is the only thing that makes him feel normal. She is his warm hug and a place for him to rest. In her world, he doesn’t worry much about anything. She makes him happy. He will gladly sacrifice mind body and soul, to be with her. She will gladly take his mind body and soul. It was important that the addict was young and looked like someone who came from suburbia. I didn’t want the addict to look like the typical idea of what a Heroin addict looks like. The whole point of the shoot was to show the new face of Heroin users.
I am happy to share my loved one is clean and on the road to recovery. I had asked my loved one, how he ended up on a road so far from where his family taught him to walk. “Many kids are doing it. It’s like no big deal. It looks harmless because they are smoking it.” It was viewed like marijuana. I told my loved one I would walk every step with him in getting clean, if he was serious about living a life of sobriety. There is a Methadone clinic located in Murrieta, CA. There he would try to shake the drug with another. We rose early every morning at 5am for him to get his dose of Methadone. There I saw so many young faces. Faces you wouldn’t think in a million years had a heavy addiction. Methadone in my opinion seems like a dead end road. It’s trading in an illegal addiction for a legal one. From my own personal experience long term rehab out of the area seems to be the golden ticket. You have to get out of dodge. Also, seeking Christ has played a big part in my loved one finding clarity. He believes all things are possible through Christ. His views are hand and had with the University of Birmingham in England.
Factors Influencing Recovery From Heroin Addiction
Research has shown that multiple factors influence a person’s decision to stop using heroin. In a study of 107 heroin users done at the University of Birmingham in England, participants were asked to list reasons why they were able to break their heroin habit. One of the top reasons listed was becoming weary of the lifestyle associated with heroin use.
The study also outlined several crucial components that aided the participants in their journey out of heroin addiction:
Social factors: Refusing to continue associating with active drug users and seeking support from family and friends not involved in drug abuse
Practical components: Provision of a sober living arrangement and helping the individual to become gainfully employed
Religion and spirituality: Reliance on a higher power, a search for deeper meaning in life, and/or religious practices such as prayer and meditation
Support groups: Peer groups such as 12-step programs or similar forms of group support
I am writing this blog post to let others know they are not alone. To let addicts know, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. To let my community know about the rise of Heroin use in their backyards. To let curious people know, you don’t have to inject Heroin to become severely addicted. It will take over your life. You will enter the twilight zone. Parents, Heroin can be smoked through a pipe or vaporized on tin foil. I was oblivious to this. Do you suspect your loved one is under in the influence? Demand a drug test, and don’t feel guilty about it. If you are a Heroin addict, go to detox, and seek treatment out of the area. As a community we have to start paying attention to some important questions. Why is there a rise of Heroin use? Do we need BETTER prevention programs in schools? Do we need to write our local police stations with our concerns? I’m not sure what the answer is, but something needs to change.
Special thanks to my brother in law for playing the role of the addict.Thank you Sandy, for the amazing hair and make up artistry! Thank you Touched by Time Vintage Rentals and My Granny’s Attic for the awesome location. If your loved one is suffering from Heroin addiction, and you have any questions, Please email me. I can possibly provide you with helpful information.
I was on my way back from wine county in Temecula, CA . I had just finished photographing a creative shoot. I saw these fine people on the corner, and immediately decided to join in on the fun! It’s amazing in this day and age food is a pounding headache. You would think after a handful of thousands of years the distribution of food would be handled properly.