Vegas Baby!


Our annual mecca to Las Vegas for the WPPI Convention is just days away!!! This year, we will be hanging out at the Red Cart booth again, spreading the love about this amazing company! We will also be attending the oh-so-popular Airplanes & Blazers party, followed up by the Sunrise concert, because who doesn't want to stay up all night and top it off with a desert sunrise and some invigorating music? Vegas is all about flying by the seat of your pants - literally, there are so many other amazing parties and gatherings to attend!! Make sure to follow our twitter to see what we are up to and make sure to say HI, along the way!!!

There is bound to be endless amount of incriminating photos in the week to're not going to want to miss this!


Te Quiero // Emily & Matt

I took the stars from our eyes, and then I made a mapand knew that somehow I could find my way back

~ Florence and The Machine

To Emily & Matt, you have taught me more about love than you know.


Te Quiero session are being photographed through the end of February and we still have some openings!! To find out more, or to book your session, click here!

Happy Valentines Day from Photogen Inc!

Happy Valentines Day!! We love to take every opportunity possible to thank our amazing clients, vendors, blog readers and friends for making our jobs SO fabulous! Thank you for all that you do for us and for allowing us to continue following our dreams!


Have a very happy day, filled with much love!


Te Quiero // Time!!

Have you ever really looked up the definition of time? Time , noun: Temporal length of event or entity's existence, period

Time, noun: Opportunity

I find this kind of funny. On one hand, time is a moment. It's temporary. On the other hand, it holds a world of opportunity. I'm not going to lie, I'm only a few days into my quest to 'document love' and it already has my brain reeling about how important every aspect of the word LOVE is. There are so many layers, so many things, objects, pets, people, vice's - you name it - that surround us in our everyday lives that we truly enjoy. The last month has been an interesting one for me, personally. I've been to a funeral, I've met some fantastic new people, I've loved, I've lost, l've grown, I've learned, I've seen my friends enter some amazing, life changing dreams and others have the weight of the world on their shoulders, I've been on emotional highs and lows - really, it's been a fucking roller coaster! Then again, maybe it's just the dead of winter in Minnesota! Either way, it's really made me reflect upon the time that we all have with the people in our lives.

Sometimes, life is going on it's merry way and we think that we have all the time in the world with people. Once something big happens, the fun and games are over and all of a sudden, things are very much so real-life. On the other hand, one of the most beautiful things in life is when certain people, lucky moments, etc. are introduced to us and there is an instant connection - and you run with it! I really feel that we are defined by the tough times in our life, just as much as we are by the fantastic moments! How we handle ourselves, how we process things, how we support each other - these are all very indicative of our character. My point is that time is a funny little thing that we should never take for granted, especially when it comes to our loved ones. I'm the number one offender for many times pushing people or things off, for selfish reasons or work, whatever. Our time - and what we choose to do with our time- is the most valuable thing we have. It is temporary, but at the same time, brings so much opportunity - and along with that, hope.


You're welcome for my emotional two cents today! :0) Enjoy!


MINNeSHOP: Location, Location, Location!!!

Woo Hoo! After a brief break from teaching MINNeSHOPS during the busy season, I am SUPER excited to bring this back! Photographers, we listened to your input and I am SO pumped about our next subject!

The next MINNeSHOP will be all about maximizing the use of one location! Many times, we get clients requesting the same areas over and over. How do we keep our work fresh in the same area? What if we get stuck? How can we look at things differently and look around to create something brilliant? We will be addressing all of these questions and so much more during this day!

Here's the scoop:

When: Tuesday, March 1, 2011 Time: 10am - 3pm Cost: $150 Location: It's a secret :0) Topic: Location, Location, Location - and how to maximize the use out of one space! This will most definitely be a shooting workshop! Bring your gear and get ready for some awesome challenges! And remember - lunch is on us during these sessions!

Spaces are limited, since we like to keep these MINNeSHOPS super intimate!

To reserve your space, click here!


Te Quiero // Cheers!

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating. ~Luciano Pavarotti and William Wright, Pavarotti


My love for food is undeniable. Personally, I think there is nothing better than fabulous food, fantastic conversation and a bottle of wine. I live for those moments!


Te Quiero // Freedom

I've been thinking a lot about the word Freedom lately and just how much depth this little word brings to my life. I talked about it at Elevate and even wrote a little on it in yesterday's blog post, but I just feel like there is so much more to say. I was having a conversation with Ms. Montour yesterday and we were talking about how cool it is that our lives are pretty spontaneous. I mean, one day we will be in our studios editing photos, and the next we will be whisked away to a far off location for a shoot, or maybe to just catch up with a friend! We are always in discovery-mode, which is a beautiful thing, that I really don't think we give ourselves enough credit for - or maybe allow ourselves to partake in as much as we would like. Life brings along giant responsibilities and money that needs to be made, along with running businesses and taking care of clients. It's easier for us to go through the motions rather than to challenge ourselves to create.

A big part of what I preached at Elevate was to simply explore and allow yourself the time to create. I'm about to take a dose of my own medicine here during the month of February, it's my challenge to document love. These might be snippets on my iphone or an actual Te Quiero photo shoot, but the point about this month is all about trying to look around and take the time to document this fleeting feeling we all adore.

I cam across the picture below, and I just thought it fit in so well with everything I am feeling right now! My great friend, Sarah Rhoads took this image of me last year on our girls trip to Moab, Utah. We were all at the base of a gorgeous mountain at sunset, in a field of could I not just take off my clothes and streak through the field?!?! I mean, really. I was going to keep this one personal, but I also decided to say fuck it. I love this photograph and I think it truly carries the essence of who I am. If I am going to 'document love' for a month, I should most definitely love myself, and I do. I'm a very free spirit, who jumps in head first to everything I do. I run with my ideas and just about every time, I don't fail, because I am solid in my vision, beliefs and direction. I'm constantly challenging myself, sometimes too much for my own good, so now here is my challenge to you: Are you allowing yourself to have a little fun? To not be so overwhelmed with life but to simply let go a little bit and see what amazing things might happen?


Te Quiero // Freedom


LOVEe Consults // De La Vue!

This week started out with one amazing LOVEe Consult with Rachel of De La Vue! Many of you might know her by her old name, Nadeau Photography. She has recently re-branded her company to De La Vue and I am so excited for the direction that she is taking things and Minnesota better get ready for this girl! There were two great conversations we had during our day together.

The first is to think about the BIG picture. Like super long term - Why are we artists? How big can this dream go and where will it take us? And what is our definition of 'big'?  One of the things that I respect most about Rachel is that she decided to re-brand herself to fit that big picture! This girl has dreams and goal far beyond her own name, and her decision to re-name her company is a ballsy move, but also one that was necessary for her growth! The fact that she even realized that just the name of her company was holding her back from those ambitions is amazing! It's a hard thing to change things up with your company, once you get things going. I mean, people expect things out of you, once you are established and to just switch it up on everyone - I mean, that's insane, right? WRONG! When you see the big picture, when you know your dreams are feasible and attainable, you need to do whatever it takes to get there. That might mean taking a big risk and making some big changes. That might mean starting over with a new facebook page and - gasp! Re-forming a new group of friends, blog readers and clients! However, it is totally and completely worth it once you are on your way to your dream!

Which brings us to the second fabulous topic of conversation, Freedom. As business owners and artists, we really, have all the freedom in the world! Yes, we all work crazy hard and insane hours, because we believe in what we are doing. Yes, there are always stresses that we can count on both hands of how hard running our businesses are. However, Rachel and I discoverd that we would clearly take all of those stresses and make some magic, for the simple freedom of doing what we do. Photographers - we are the luckiest people in the WORLD to be able to do what we do! We are sooooo freaking lucky to be able to create and INSPIRE people every single day we clock in.

How cool is that?

Congratulations to Rachel on all of the super fun, exciting things to come! You are an amazing woman and photographer, whom I greatly respect!

For those of you who are interested in booking a LOVEe Consult, there is no better time but now! We are currently taking bookings for February - April! For more information, click here!

If you are ready to sign up, please contact me:


Published // Minnesota Bride!

The latest and greatest issue of Minnesota Bride has hit the news stands!! I always love picking up this magazine, they really do such a nice job of putting it together - and it's fun to see our weddings in print! This issue features the lovely wedding of Brandyn and Mario, who, business aside, are two very special people in my life! They run a yoga studio called Sigh Yoga, that has completely changed my life! Brandyn and Mario are two people who have created a space that brings balance, inspiration and the greatest sense of community to more people than they know!

Photogen Inc NW MNBSS11.jpg

Have a very happy weekend!


Cami & Erik!!

Cami & Erik were one our lovely sets of models for the Elevate Workshop! The fun part about these two is that they are newly-engaged in real life! Cami is also an amazing photographer - you should totally check her out! I snuck a few minutes with these two after hours... static_uri=%2Fdarkroom%2Fmt%2Fmt%2Dstatic%2F&data=%2Fdarkroom%2Fblog%2Fblogshow%2F4d39dc6b9bf58%2Fimage%2Etable%2Edat&slideshow=0&ssr=1&autofit=0&show_width=976&show_height=651


And once again, a giant thank you to Jen of Jen's Blossoms for creating the GORGEOUS bouquets, table scape and chandelier of flowers!


Karissa & Mike!!

We'll design a clever disguise We'll retreat to the bottom of the sea We were destined to live out our lives underwater, you and me

~ Clap Your Hands Say Yeah


Special thanks to Jen's Blossoms for designing the AMAZING beach-ball-o-flowers & super-cute swim cap and to our lovely models, Karissa & Mike!


Te Quiero // An Intimate Couple Session


We're switching things up this year!! I'm super excited to announce:

Te Quiero // An Intimate Couple Session

For the past few years, we have hosted the Rockstar Boudoir event, but I want to get a little more gritty this year! Obviously, I love photographing couples, and I want to literally document love during the month of February. Whether you have been dating for 2 weeks or married for 50 years, I would love to have the opportunity to photograph you! I really want this to be an open creative experience, so I will be experimenting with various types of film + my digital camera!

Here's the scoop//

What: A very personal photography session with Eliesa featuring couples.

When: The entire month of February

Who: Any couple who would like to have lovely, personal and real photographs of this time in their lives!

Why: Because February is the month of love - why not?

Each session will include:  20 Images Private Online Gallery DVD [10] 5x5 Prints of your choice


Spaces are limited and subject to availability.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Eliesa at:

Mr. and Mrs. Weiss // Married in the Windy City!

Words can not describe how much I have come to love Heidi, Jonah and their families! This past weekend, I traveled to Chicago to photograph their wedding and it was absolutely spectacular! First off, one of my best friends in the world, Jeffrey of JNP Studios, came out with me to second shoot! I absolutely LOVE shooting with him - the creative energy is simply off the hook! One of the reasons I am so drawn to traveling for weddings is because I get to know the couple, their family and their friends SO much more! I usually fly in on Friday and leave on a Sunday, which allows me to go to rehearsal dinners, after parties  - you name it! I love the more intimate time with the couple's family and friends before the big day, because it really helps me connect with them so much more! I also love that by the time that we leave, we feel like family! One of my favorite things about this couple is the fact that they literally love to throw a great party! That was their only objective, besides getting married, and both Heidi and Jonah really allowed themselves to let loose and have fun! To bring this party all together, the oh-so-wonderful Claudia & Mira from As You Wish - An Event Planning Company, came on board! They were SUCH a joy to work with! Heidi and Jonah had their event at the Ravenswood Billboard Factory, which was an incredible fun space! Imagine an old warehouse feel, mixed with a vintage car museum and gorgeous window light? Yes, please!

Heidi and Jonah's wedding, was, in fact, one giant celebration! I could tell that they truly value their friends and family more than anything else in their lives and from the word's of the groom, "Let's Fuckin' Party!"



Congratulations to Heidi and Jonah! I am SO happy we could be a part of your day!


Elevate Workshop // A Dream Come True!

Last week was a giant week for me! As you may have read in previous blog posts, I've been planning a little workshop called Elevate. I have been thinking about this for about 2 years and have literally put everything I have into planning this over the last few months. It was my mission to put on the best. workshop. ever. for the attendees - and that meant their entire experience, from start to finish. The location, to me, was one of the most important factors. I wanted to be in a fun, creative space that was removed from our every-day-lives and the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs was absolutely perfect. In fact, everything was perfect. Of course, there are always things we can improve upon in the future, but we literally had the perfect group of AMAZINGLY talented photographers, the most solid guest speakers and incredibly ambitious shooting challenges. We also indulged in some of the best food and along with that came some fantastic conversation. We literally laughed, cried, and ultimately grew from this experience and I must say - we had more fun than I could have hoped for.

When you put on a workshop, it's an entirely different learning experience. I found myself saying, " I hope..." a lot of the time. About midway through the workshop, I took a moment to look around and really listen to the conversations that were going on. My hopes for Elevate had become a reality and I felt humbled and incredibly grateful for having accomplished everything I had set out to achieve with this workshop. I also realize that I couldn't have made this SO amazing, if I didn't have such amazing friends!

A HUGE thank you to Jen Harthorn for putting together our amazing flower arrangements and helped style our photoshoots! Jen and her assistant worked around the clock, creating some amazing art...can you say a flower beach ball?!?! Yep, that happened! Also, to Matt Brue and the Capture Studios crew who also worked tirelessly during the week to create some inspiring video clips to share with you all! I also have to thank our amazing studio manager, Liz, and our great friend, Jeffrey, for helping me with all of the logistics!!

Last but not least, I have to thank Brian Greenberg of Richard Photo Lab and Isabella Sikaffy of FloraBella for coming out and speaking to us! These two really were the icing on the cake for Elevate! The conversations and the knowledge that they gave to us is truly invaluable and I am SO thankful that they believed in Elevate, and wanted to be a part of it!, I'll stop chatting...and share with you, some very pretty pictures...and yes...Jesus stopped by!


We kicked off our first night with a fun shooting challenge with RJ Kern. RJ taught us all about a technique called 'painting with light'. We simply had a bunch of fun testing out this new bag-of-tricks we learned and here are the results:


The second shooting challenge was underwater! I was absolutely blown away by the images that our attendees created! Each person had 5 minutes and 1 descriptive word that they had to convey...not an easy task! Here are the words...can you tell which word belongs to each photo?

Energize, Melancholy, Statuesque, Provocative,  Chic, Whimsical, Delightful, Bizarre, and Memorizing.



Our last shooting challenge was a team challenge. Each team had to work together to create a triptych with a cohesive theme revolving around the word 'honeymoon'. Each person had to submit one image towards the triptych, yet they all had to be on the same page with an overall vision!


Again, thank you, thank you, thank you to all of my sponsors, guest speakers, models and most importantly, the wonderful attendees! Each and every one of you are incredible artists and people! I feel so grateful to have had the opportunity to get to know you more and help you grow! You all made Elevate everything I had dreamed it could be!

Cheers to Elevate!


Elevate Workshop // Day 1 Video!

For those of you who don't know, I am in Palm Springs, teaching my workshop, called Elevate! As I've been dreaming up this week, I had one goal, which was to create an atmosphere as a platform for people to connect and grow. It goes way beyond that, but I'm currently getting ready for day 2 and I am floored. I'm so impressed by the talent that is at this workshop and their willingness to open up and I'm humbled and honored to be teaching with them.

I say teaching with, because I am pretty sure they are teaching me more than they know!

The oh-so-awesome Capture Studios put together this amazing same-day-edit to share with you all just a little of what we have been up to! Make sure to watch it in full screen - it's that good!

I will most definitely be sharing more about Elevate as the days go on, but I just had to share this with you right away!

Here's to another beautiful day!


2010: One AMAZING year!

2010 has been one crazy, yet ridiculously awesome year! While doing this blog post, it kind of blows my mind to see all of the things we have accomplished! I mean, seriously, how am I still standing upright?!? I think I am the type of person who thrives, the busier I am! I love momentum and I think that is SO important in both life and business! Here's a little recap on our amazing year: 1: Kicked things off with my first book! 2: Photographed SO many amazing weddings! We had THE most fabulous clients in 2010 - thank you to each and every one of you for letting us be a part of your day! 3: Guest Spoke at our friend Jeffrey's workshop 4: Launched LOVEe Consults and the MINNeSHOPS 5: Hung out and grew our relationships with our photographer friends! 6: Made a music video, that ended up being quite controversial, and for the record, this was made for pure fun. No other reason. So many of you LOVED this and so did we! 7: Separated my wedding and commercial work with the launch of the ELIESA brand. 8: SO enjoyed seeing my ladies on our annual trip - this year we went to MOAB! 9: Took some time to soul search with Ms. Montour. 10: Continued to push our own limits! The Photogen Inc team has grown and we are stronger than ever! 2010 came with more features, both in magazines, books and blogs! And, we even won a few awards...WPPI Print Competition, Nomination for NAHA and an AdFed Award on the commercial side!


All in all, we want to sincerely thank our clients and blog readers! Photogen Inc would not be what it is with out each and every one of you! You keep us going and make living our dreams a reality! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Happy New Years to you all! Here's to a FABULOUS 2011!


Where It All Began!

Sometimes, for us to understand where we are going, we have to take a moment to remember where we came from. I often get asked the question, "How did you get into Photography?" and I always have to stop myself from being like..."Well, duh. That's just obviously what I was always going to be." I had THE best experience and the greatest mentor when I was in high school with my photo teacher, Mr. Ron Marschel! Whether he knows it or not (and I'm pretty darn sure he does), this man has touched and impacted more students than I think he can even conceive! First, you need to understand Marsch. He's a man with a peg-leg (he had polio when he was a kid), and I think he's on his second pacemaker....and he is STILL teaching!! He is a person who has beat the odds when they were all against him and continues to have the best out look on life!

I remember passing by his room as a freshman in high school and just being constantly intrigued by what was going on in there! All of the students were artsy upper-classmen who were always working on the school newspaper - or just hanging out. Marsch's room had a vibe unlike any other classroom in the school and I just HAD to be in there! Then, I found out there was a was all over. I was on a mission.

I loved the darkroom. First, it was dark and mysterious. Then, the endless possibilities of creation were just right at my fingertips and it was amazing! It was then that I started taking photos (all film, mind you) for the school newspaper and yearbook. Hooked is an understatement. It wasn't even an obsession really, it was just simply where I belonged.

We all have those moments and mentors in life who define our future. For me, it was Marsch. He's crazy, he's outspoken, he's bold...and he's always right. He pushed me to think out of the box and to not stop until I got the shot. He didn't use a text book, instead, he looked me in the eye and gave me some weird-philosophical-backwards answer to my question that later on I would be like, Ohhhhh!!!! Got it! He didn't teach me the uber technical elements of photography, rather, he taught me how to feel and the organic process of creating a remarkable image.

I took a trip back to visit Marsch, where he is still, undoubtedly, making an impact on his students! His room is still filled with the same piles of crap, and there are remnants everywhere of moments that are preserved from his student's journeys! The fact that his room hasn't changed is a little mind-blowing, yet necessary. The students who resonate with Marsch are those who look around and notice the memories of the past and the value that it brings to their present.

As I think about 2010 and the amazing things that I have accomplished, I also have taken a moment to look back and realize what I want for 2011! Having a teacher like Marsch was most definitely the #1 reason I am who I am, as an artist! One of my 2010 goals was all about giving back to my community and, hopefully, impacting them as much as I have been in the past by my mentors. I have more than enjoyed my time teaching others. We started the MinneShops and LOVEe Consults and It has been absolutely amazing and fulfilling!  For 2011, I want to step it up a notch. I'm already kicking things off with Elevate (which is 2 weeks away...SO freaking excited!) and I hope to continue to teach, inspired and do more workshops throughout the year! I'm also hoping to do some speaking sessions in actual high schools this year to help inspire students and teachers...we'll see!

The possibilities are simply endless!


Special thanks to Marsch for letting me crash into his room for a day! It was good to be back!