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Last week, I had a friend, Audrey Priel, take photos of me for my newly revamped website and for some other art-and-book-related endeavors. Audrey started out as a customer at my paint and sip studio, and won me over because she hiccups constantly. Seriously, like, all day, every day. It’s probably annoying for her, but it’s adorable and hilarious to me. Also, she knew the Unicorn Song and used to go to my favorite pub in D.C. So we bonded quickly. Then she became an actual friend because she’s spectacularly silly and kind and encourages me to be the same way. I’ve gotten to watch over the last couple years as she’s decided to take her photography seriously, and it’s been beautiful to watch her grow into and realize her own talent. Knowing that I needed updated photos, I naturally turned to her.

I’ve posed for several photo shoots in the past because of my years in acting, and generally, it’s a miserable process. It’s awkward and feels phony and forced and contrived and all sorts of other yuckwords. I’m just not comfortable with it. But this photo shoot was FUN. Legit. It wasn’t just fantastic, it was funtastic. Audrey was so playful and creative and she got so damn excited with each shot that I got excited with each shot, even though I couldn’t see them. And when someone gets that excited, it makes you feel pretty, and loved, and it inspires you to be more naturally yourself, which in turn makes the photos come out better, which makes her more excited, which makes you more excited, and it’s an endless cycle of excited-ness (“excitement” wasn’t an exciting enough word).

And then I got to see the results. Holy crap. The girl’s got skillz fo rillz. I can’t wait to share some of my favorites in another post once I narrow it down from the bagazillion (that’s a bagillion gazillion for those not good at math) I have to choose from. You can see some of her other work on her Rose Trail Images website.

Audrey is going to be doing a guest blog for me in the near future, talking about her approach to these kinds of photo shoots, and we’ll share some of her photos from my session at that time. But today, I just want to share what generally happens when I sit for photos, which is why most photographers don’t exactly love me:

Audrey silly 1_compressedAudrey silly 2_compressedAudrey silly 5_compressed

Audrey silly 6_compressed

This one is my personal favorite.