Virginia Play Garden Portraits & Wildflowers: Meet Lauren Guilford

Meet Lauren, a sweet as can be, endearing brunette.  If you meet her once, you’ll never forget her. She radiates genuine warmth and balances innocence and life’s lessons of great loss with a grace beyond her years.  When you talk to her she listens like you’re the only person in the room.  When she laughs, her nose crinkles in an adorable way.  Her laugh is infectious. It’s like her whole body gives into that very moment.  When she laughs you want to laugh too.  It’s refreshing to be around someone who has so much zest for life.  Who sees every possible possibility and whole heartedly believes, that sure why couldn’t that work?  Why not try it? I like go getters, and people who explore every nook and cranny of their talents.  I like people who seek the magical land where their life’s work and soul’s desires align.

I first met Lauren in Laie, Hawaii at Jonathan Canlas’ FIND 2.0 workshop.  Then our paths crossed again at Kristen Kalp’s Steer Your Ship workshop.  Which by the way is one of the most enlightening experiences I’ve ever had.  I came away with an amazing sense of clarity, a new sense of direction to seek in my business, and friendships, not too mention a fantastic marketing roadmap and a spirit animal.  Kristen Kalp, you are a genius who lights up the world of those who know you.  So thank you for finding your talent, being you, and sharing with others who you are.    

These photographs were taken at The Play Garden, in Boyce, Virginia.  Lauren is a fantastic hybrid (film+digital) photographer whose main focus is family portraits and birth stories.  So if you’re pregnant and looking for a person that love, loves babies and mamas like you wouldn’t believe, she is your girl 100%.  From one mama to another, you can’t go wrong by choosing her. Check out her beautiful work at http://laurenguilford.com/blog/.

With warmest aloha,

Crystal Chanel

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June 5, 2013 - 1:27 pm

Kristen Kalp - So so so good! Thank you for your kind, soul-stirring words, and for giving Lauren these gorgeous images. She’s a graceful thing. (Particularly with a banana and a water bottle, you know…)

June 5, 2013 - 1:27 pm

Kristen Kalp - So so so good! Thank you for your kind, soul-stirring words, and for giving Lauren these gorgeous images. She’s a graceful thing. (Particularly with a banana and a water bottle, you know…)

June 5, 2013 - 3:47 pm

Lauren Guilford - Oh sweet friend, thank you for these. Such kind words and such fun photos. Thank you for this! xoxo

June 5, 2013 - 3:47 pm

Lauren Guilford - Oh sweet friend, thank you for these. Such kind words and such fun photos. Thank you for this! xoxo

June 5, 2013 - 6:28 pm

Patricia Healey - That’s my girl, and I wholeheartedly agree.

June 5, 2013 - 6:28 pm

Patricia Healey - That’s my girl, and I wholeheartedly agree.

June 5, 2013 - 8:35 pm

Laurie Buchanan - aww, but how is she so grown up??

June 6, 2013 - 1:13 am

Janice Gilbert Ure - Great pictures

June 6, 2013 - 6:39 am

Crystal Chanel Photography - @Patricia Healey You have a beautiful daughter.

June 6, 2013 - 6:41 am

Crystal Chanel Photography - Janice Gilbert Ure Thank you :)

June 6, 2013 - 6:44 am

Crystal Chanel Photography - @Kristen Kalp You’re welcome ;) It’s true her ways with a banana and water bottle are well you know . . .

June 7, 2013 - 1:15 am

Lauren Wilk - ok!!! YESSSSSS!!! FINALLY! I love when photographers get beautiful pictures taken of them because, as a lover of beautiful portraits, why wouldn’t you want one of yourself! So happy for you and you look so beautiful!

June 7, 2013 - 1:15 am

Lauren Wilk - also the place you took them is incredible

July 31, 2013 - 2:14 pm

Meet my sweet friend Crystal... // Los Angeles Portrait Photographer - Los Angeles Birth and Portrait Photography - [...] was so pretty! If you’re curious as to what the pictures of me look like…head over to Crystal’s blog to check them out! She is a very talented photographer located in Oahu, HI! ….lucky [...]

Enchanted Hawaii Elopement with Flower Hakus in the Forest: Meet Kayla & Vissin

Meet Kayla, a gorgeous, glowing, sweet, jewelry designer, mama, bride and Vissin, her totally in to her, ridiculously cut, handsome, Hawaiian surfer groom and father to their precious little one.  We met up one lovely Friday afternoon in a fantastical (made up word) magical wooded area located on the windward side of Oahu.  Vissin is the little brother, of the ever so talented, Makane, a wedding florist and flower crown designer/owner of Ocean Dreams of Flowers located in Kailua, HI.  She styled this shoot and designed all the dresses and leis seen here.   I was lucky enough to meet her one late Saturday night at a fashion show in Honolulu, HI.  We’ve since then collaborated on several shoots together, this being my first one to blog, with more to come later on.

The chemistry between Kayla and Vissin is thick, sweet, syrupy, thick.  It’s palpable, tangible, and lingers in the air with slow, long, lovers’ gazes and playful sweet kisses.  These two have what other couples sometimes want.  They still like each other.  They still flirt.  They stare and stare and stare at each other.  They hold hands.  Even from an outsider’s perspective, time seems to stand still when they are together.

According to Hawaiianencylopedia.com, the lei is symbolic of aloha. There’s a Hawaiian proverb which states, “E lei no au i ko aloha” meaning “I will wear your love as a wreath.” A lei for the head is known as lei po’o, one worn around the neck is known as lei ‘a’i, while those worn on the wrists or ankles are known as kupe’e.  The follwing are different ways that a lei can be made Wili (twisted), Hipu’u (knotted), Hili (braided), Haku (mounted), Humupapa (sewed onto backing), Kui (strung with a needle), or Micronesian style (tied or woven flat).  Makane’s grandmother taught her mother the art form of lei making, which was then passed down another generation to Makane and her sisters.  If you’re looking for a beautiful, hand crafted, Hawaiian haku custom made for you, contact Makane at EarthLaughsinFlowersHI@gmail.com or (808)372-5400.  Are you a destination bride thinking about eloping?  We are just the girls for you – photography, location scouting, event styling, and flower hakus all in one:)

-Crystal

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Hawaii Couple’s Portrait Photography: Under the Pier with Corina & David

Meet Corina & David, a fun, playful, Hawaii couple, who happen to be high school sweethearts.  We met at the Pier for a creative, natural light, portrait session at the beach.  Corina was immediately endearing, sweet, and adorable! David was good natured, charming, and easy going.  All in all a fantastic, colorful combination.  Corina actually entered a Valentine’s Day contest I put on in February, where each couple was required to submit a photograph and a mini essay detailing why I should choose them for a free portrait session. Here is an excerpt from what she said, “David and I have been together since we were 17 and in High School. We moved to Hawaii about 8.5 years ago and got married 5 years ago. We have been together for 15 years, but we fall in love with eachother more everyday.”

Something about enduring love gets me every time.  The type of love that perseveres through obstacles, celebrates victories together, and holds your hand whether everything is cloudy grey or sunshiny yellow.  The type of love that remains even if the other person changes, for better or worse.  I’m a big fan of the type of love that  can’t be bought with expensive unoriginal gifts, or the perfect Hollywood romantic comedy words every single time.  Don’t get me wrong, I like big, bold, grand gestures of romance – European trips, songs written for you, bathtubs with candle light and Frank Sinatra playing, but I also like ordinary, everyday love.  The type of love that comes home and says, “You look pretty” (when really, you know that 3 day bed head, I’ve had the flu, I thought I wasn’t going to make it look you’ve got going on isn’t pretty, not at all, in fact it’s a little rough, lol.)  Or perhaps it’s the type of love that goes to the store at 10 pm at night when you have a chocolate chip cookie craving.   I like the love that holds you close and dear after you’ve had a baby and you don’t recognize the woman in the mirror, with 38 extra pounds on her small frame.  I like the love that kisses you good bye every morning.

I like seeing other couples succeed.  It makes me happy. There is something so beautiful and rare when you commit to someone, daily choose them, and patiently discover the ins and outs of their soul.  I’m thrilled you two have each other to grow old with.

So from one 5-year married couple to another – Happy 5 year wedding anniversary!! Wishing you both all the joy in the world.

-Crystal

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For Boston, With Aloha From Hawaii

My best friend is a triathlete, a marathoner.  What if she had ran in the 2013 Boston Marathon?  Crossed the finish line, just as the unthinkable occurred.  Today is hard because evil violated anyone who has ever dreamed their dream and then followed through.  Today the best of the best, ran their heart and soul out.  Their loved ones were waiting on them to cross that finish line. I’m not sure who didn’t get to say goodbye to who, or what words were left unsaid, or embraces left undone, but I am sad for them.  Sad for their loss and their unspeakable heart ache.  Sad for the celebrations that can never happen, the disabling of innocent people.  The loss of our precious children.  May Jesus give peace to all those hurting.  I’m praying for you Boston.

I’m at a loss for words, so I’ll say the rest in pictures.

- Crystal

 

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May 6, 2013 - 7:44 pm

ashley goodwin - OooooOOOooooOOOo these are AMAZING!