WC: Rock Candy

I’m afraid this one will have to be really quick, as I’m on the road.  We are spending a few incredible days in Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park.  We’re having an absolute blast, and I’ll have some fun stories to share.  Be sure to follow my blog here so you don’t miss out!


Continue reading

TWOI: 2/16/18

This week has been crazy busy.. I’ve been scrambling to process PDXWLF photos (I’ll have a post on that soon!), entertain family, and prepare for a trip to Utah!  We just spent our first day in Zion National Park, and I can’t wait to share some of the photos – what an amazing place!

This first photo from Instagram this week was from another national park: Denali!  We had some beautiful clouds to contrast the lush landscape.  I’d love more time to explore there.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

Continue reading

A Winter Day at the Coast

I have just a quick one for you this week, as we leave soon for our next adventure: Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park!

Things have been incredibly busy for us lately; activities seem to come in waves.  So it was a relief to catch a break and escape to the coast for a day.


We lucked out with perfect weather (rare at the beach, and even rarer this time of year), and it was nourishing for our souls to be away from the hustle and bustle for just a short time.

Continue reading

WC: My Favorite Things to Shoot Around Portland

Portland is a wonderful city.  I’ve been living in the area for many years now, and I simply love it.  One of the benefits to living in a place for a long period of time is the photo opportunities.  Any place can be beautiful.  But the truly magical moments are sporadic and fleeting.  You might luck out with timing, but that’s sheer coincidence.  To guarantee success in a particular place, living there certainly gives you the upper hand.

Over the years, I have found there are so many things I love photographing in this city.  Here are some of my favorites – something of a personal photo tour, if you will.
Continue reading

TWOI: 2/9/18

This week on Instagram featured a lot of scenic shots.  I’m trying to shoot for a more consistent look on my Instagram, so I’m going to be a bit more particular with the images I choose to feature there.  Let me know what you think!

This first one is from Hawaii.  This was a beach we wanted to reach, but we had a really late start.  We did make it down there (through the mosquitos), just in time for sunset and a darkening trek back up the massive hill.  You can read about that adventure in depth here.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

This next one is also from our trip to Hawaii – the beautifully cracked lava fields with Mauna Kea looming in the distance.  It barely even looks like a mountain the incline is so gradual.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

We saw this little guy at the summit of the Savage River Alpine Trail in Denali National Park.  And while this isn’t quite a groundhog (he’s a ground squirrel), I chose this image for last week’s Monochrome Madness and for my February 2nd Instagram post.  These little guys are so curious!

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

This is also from Denali National Park.  I couldn’t get enough of that mist.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2017

And another from Hawaii.  When it’s all rainy and dreary here, I dream of those tropical beaches – of a simpler time.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

Getting down to the final two, this was tough.  This was for my Weekly Wow this week, though my actual wowing picture is a panorama.  You can check it out right here.  We were clouded in for the lunar eclipse, but the city sure was beautiful that morning well before dawn.


And finally, my top pick for this week is from beautiful Crater Lake.  It’s crazy to think this spot was a complete blizzard only 24 hours prior.  Those clouds added some nice texture to the sky, and I just love the colors.

This was also an image from my weekly challenge post this week for the theme “beloved” where I talk about how I wound up shooting the things I do.  You can read the post here.

© LotsaSmiles Photography 2016

Which image do you like best?  I’m always curious to hear what people think, as my personal opinions seem to differ from everyone else’s.  Feel free to leave a comment below, and check out daily posts over on my Instagram account.

Want sneak peeks and exclusive photo tips?
Sign up for my monthly newsletter!


Weekly Wow: Cityscape

Last week saw a spectacular celestial event: a trifecta of super moon (the moon was physically close to the earth), blue moon (second full moon within a single month), and a lunar eclipse (self-explanatory).  We woke well before the dawn to get ourselves into position and prepared to shoot this rare conjunction.

However, in true Portland fashion, the weather wouldn’t quite behave.  Continue reading