A Girls Best Friend

Meet Amanda & Penelope! Amanda approached me wanting a beach mini session with just her and her best friend. Penelope, the sweet golden retriever, just turned eight years old and showed nothing but her puppy side. It’s never to late to capture moments like these with your loved ones, young or old, furry or human!

Yomitan Pottery Village

Down a little road, tucked away in a residential area you’ll find this cute little village of pottery. You park at one end and walk down the street popping in and out of tiny homes/shops. They are all filled with unique pottery and glass work, showing some true traditional craftsmanship of Okinawa. If your lucky you might get to catch some of the locals hand crafting there ceramic collections. 

Mini Session at Toguchi Beach, Okinawa, Japan

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While scouting for places to shoot this family of four ( yes, the fur babies count) I took a wrong turn to what ended up being the cutest little beach! Toguchi Beach, nestled in a little nook and cranny close by Kadena air base, had white coral sand and beautiful rock formations.  For this mini session we were blessed with one of those rich and creamy sunsets to leave us with all the feels. 

Backyard Bohemian Barbaque

We had a month of vacation to spend at home in North Carolina (after being in San Diego for a year) before heading off to the South Pacific island, Okinawa, for Tylers deployment. We had our reception party scheduled to celebrate with family and friends on September, 22nd 2018.   A week before, Hurricane Florence came in and absolutely devastated our hometown in Newport, North Carolina. Our venue was damaged beyond repair and with our schedule to be able to have a party in time, we moved the venue to Tyler’s parents backyard, which still had its fare share of repair and clean up in only 5 days.  Our vendors (band, catering, rentals, floral) were unreachable in the beginning of the week due to the amount of damage but I kept faith, hoping it would somehow all come together. I can remember thinking after the storm had passed that there was absolutely no way we could pull this off. With debris everywhere, homes damaged, standing water, roads impassable, and power lines down there was bigger priorities to be looking at. After talking to several family members and friends we decided that at that moment everyone needed each other more than ever and it was a perfect time to move forward with our Reception. After all I had started planning six months in advance, Complete DIY from start to finish. BBQ, Brews, & Bad Dance Moves. I used vintage, family, and bohemian finds, soft floral arrangements by myself (and with the help from my amazing friends) , mismatched rugs for the dance floor, farm tables and mismatched chairs to create a warm vibe from Charming and quaint rentals located in Newport, NC.  Tylers family handcrafted the live edge wood benches, arbor, and swing adding a rustic vibe. We Decorated the Oak tree with vintage glass, bistro, and macrame lights bringing a warm and inviting mood. My mother baked and decorated the beautiful Naked Cake that was a hit with everyone. It was such a blessing to have so many hands reach out to help. I couldn’t have imagined a more magical night to dance under the stars and embrace everything we do have, like each other, and leave behind the hardships that we had faced the week before and to finally let loose and relax.

  photos by Maddie Pake @MiserableBeingsphotography @maddpake

Good Guys X Carson Lewallen

With the uprising of alternatives in food, travel, and fashion, I'm highlighting a brand this week that combines both style and ethics flawlessly.  GGDWL (Good Guys Don't Wear Leather) specializes in badass Vegan shoes for the eco-concioius gal. If you go to there site, chances are you'll recognize the red headed bombshell from my video, Carson Lewallen. Im fortunate to be good friends with this goddess and she was kind enough to let me shoot and interview with her.

These boots were made for walking and let me tell you, babe, they are not a force to be reckon with. 

Who?

Carson Lewallen           

Age?

25

From?

From St. Louis, MO

Where now?

Lives in San Clemente, CA 

Why GGDWL?

"Growing up around farms it has been a journey changing my mindset from what I thought was normal such as growing up eating meat to realizing how the animal is effected. We consume that same negative energy once we digest it. I'm a huge fan of GGDWL because we all love leather things, but they make it accessible to those who lead a vegan Lifestyle.  Not only are they vegan but they are the most iconic pairs of boots I've ever witnessed or owned."

what inspires you?

"Imagination and smiles,  it keeps me going"

What do you set out to do for people to be inspired by? 

"I set out to live a conscious, fun, adventurous, healthy lifestyle and I think by simply living that and having one on one conversations with other individuals sparks that."
"If there is anything I've learned and continue to learn it is to not take yourself to seriously and that life will just happen."
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Morning with photographer Connor Eck

Something about a morning session with warm lighting and weather in Southern California. I was lucky enough to link up with my good friend and fast emerging water photographer Connor Eck. I got to dig into my summer wardrobe and wear Carve Designs newest Duckdive not-quite-as-thick-as-neoprene onesie to keep me protected from all the elements and leaving me with nothing to worry about while being active in the water. This session in particular was nothing but smiles while riding my Pocket knife by Bing Surfboards and chatting back and forth about warmer waters, waves, and photography with Connor. 

WA x OR

Recently I made a short and sweet trip northwest from my usual Sunny California.  Theres something about Oregon and Washington that caters to a little bit of everyone.  Whether your enjoy outdoors, food, shopping, parks, etc., they've got it. If you haven't thought about putting these states on your bucket list, I highly advise adding them.  

A little background....I grew up in Battle Ground, Washington for seven years. When I heard my dad was taking a work trip to the area, I jumped on the chance to go explore the area, and of course spend some time with him. While he worked during the days, I ventured out on my own way around the area. 

Im giving you  a few of my spots I stopped to hopefully give you some ideas for your next trip!

Where to Fly in

Portland International Airport (PDX )

Where to Stay

Vancouver, Washington offers a great home base for all your adventures and is just right outside of Portland, Oregon making it a short drive from the PDX Airport.  Airbnbs, bed and breakfast, hotels, and campsites are endless around the surrounding areas as well. 

Places to Eat

  • Breakfast; Fatty Pattys, in Vancouver, literally serves pizza trays of pancakes, so save this one after you've worked up an appetite on one of the many hikes.
  • If your thinking of something more light just find a Coffee Shack, always quaint and quick, and almost on every corner.  My favorite that I found was Country Coffee offering amazing lattes and snacks. 
  • Lunch; Burgerville, Located all over, with a menu full of burgers, shakes, and fries. You possibly can't go wrong. 
  • Dinner; Eat on the Waterfront of Vancouver at Beach's(American cuisine) and Who Song and Larrys (Mexican).

Things to Do

  • Boneville Fish hatchery and dam
  • Bridge of the Gods 
  • Vista House viewpoint of Columbia River Gorge
  • Multnomah Falls; The most popular visited falls along the River Gorge.  
  • Bridal Viel Falls; smaller but worth the quick hike. 
  • Latourell Falls By far my favorite of the falls, simply because of my timing and no crowd.  The sun peeped out for the beginning of my hike, making the forest pop with lush colors.  
  • Dog Mountain; Be prepared for your thighs to burn, but breathtaking views from the top.
  • Mt St Helens; MAKE THIS YOUR NUMBER ONE STOP! Even if the last 7 miles in are closed down due to snow, you can find breathtaking views as well as hike in to a viewpoint.  I took Hummocks Loop Trail that linked to a small dirt trail that you can take towards the Johnston Ridge Observatory. I only made it half way but was able to capture amazing pictures and only saw one other person! 
  • Battle Ground Lake; I spent my youth playing in the sand pit next to the lake and the playground.  The Lake offers camping and walking trail. 
  • Lucia Falls; great place for a evening picnic with a glass of wine. 
  • Battle Ground, Washington downtown strip for cute little antique stores.

 

Gear Guide

  • Clothing; Layer, layer, layer!  My go to for this trip was Carve Designs Jackets, leggings and active tops, keeping me warm with quick dry material all while being stylish for those quick stops for coffee or those spontaneous pull overs to explore an antique shop. 
  • Shoes; Make sure you pack some hiking boots that you don't mind getting dirty like my personal favorite, Keen Terradoras. The terradoras have a sleek design made to transition from hike to around town.  By the end of my trip they were covered in dry mud from most of my hikes getting rained on, but with a little wash they were back to looking brand new. 
  • Bring a camera (film, digital, polaroid) that makes your heart happy because theres so many things to capture and your going to want to show your family and friends! My sidekick for adventure is my Canon 7d mk II. 
  • A light and comfortable daypack to carry your snacks, raincoat, and camera for your hikes. A Camelbak water reservoir is always a good idea too.