On Love and Taking Back Valentine’s Day

Posted on: Thursday, February 5, 2015

: from The Photo Lab :

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Have you had just about enough of pink and red hearts everywhere? Does it seem like jewelery commercials are on steroids recently or has that one Taylor Swift song played one too many times on your radio? (don’t get me wrong, I’ll sing along to it every time :) ) What I mean is, February seems to cash in on the idea of love and romance, often overdoing it and too often making it about “stuff”; “Get her this! she won’t be disappointed…” or the sheer amount of silly movies out there has some of us opting for binge-watching Hannibal or something anti-Valentine’s Day.

The truth is, for those lucky enough to be in brand-new, pink cloud relationships, Valentine’s is fun, and romantic. For those of us in loving, committed relationships and marriages, more often than not, it is just another day, when sometimes we might feel the pressure to spice it up a bit. Happy singles or folks waiting for the right someone maybe skipping this silly holiday altogether. But… Since when is Valentine’s Day only for romantic couples? Is it just me or isn’t love something worth valuing and celebrating everyday? That does not mean chocolates, champagne and roses throughout the year, like I said before, that is just stuff. Love does not have one, single face, it has many! And it is not just pink and red, it has many shades, FAR more than 50.
Love is worth celebrating, absolutely. But love is more than just romance, it is complicated, verbal and silent. It hurts, and it saves you. It is worth fighting for, it is certainly worth dying for. But most of all, it is that little light in your chest, when you have a horrible day at work and you let go of it by talking it over with a friend over a beer. It is holding your child’s hand. It is listening to your grandmother laugh. It is a wordless embrace with a brother or sister, where everything is said in that contact. It is remembering someone through a song. It is missing your mom or your dad and wanting them near you when things get rough… And for me, for many, it is a wagging tail and nose nudge during a walk in the woods, or a warm, purring weight on my lap by the fire. Because THAT is love too, and it is just as worth celebrating. Every. Single. Day.

So I am not going to bore you with love songs, tips, or quotes about love, just look everywhere else for those… But I will share one thought, my own: Trust is earned, and Love its sweetest reward.
It is not your typical valentine, but I mean it to be more of a Thank You to those of you who have trusted us to let us in to your world, and allow us to photograph your love. Thank you for sharing our values and celebrating your love everyday through the joy of a photograph. These are just a handful of our favorite moments throughout the years. This is Love to me. This is what I live to photograph and immortalize. This is what connects me to people. This is vulnerability at its loveliest. Some of these souls are no longer around, but never doubt how loved they were, and still are.

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Still don’t think you have a Valentine? There are plenty waiting to be “somebody’s somebody” at your local animal shelter. Adopt, foster, or volunteer. Their love is free.

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Had to sneak this one in, my favorite photo I have every taken of these two shades of my heart, my Bill and my Corbin. A dog and his person.

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Want to photograph your love? It is a gift more delicious than chocolate, it lasts longer than champagne and it is more valuable than any diamond out there. It is a moment, forever. Get in touch and tell us about your love story, we’ll throw in a surprise gift with every portrait session booked through February. And yep! We do have gift certificates 😉

As a professional photographer myself, I can honestly say, that the photographs others have taken of my loves, in those rare moments of vulnerability, are my most valuable possession. To be seen through someone else’s lens is the most interesting and humbling experience, and I cannot recommend it enough. Thank you Jesse Freidin, Heaven McArthur, Jamie Pflughoeft (Cowbelly Pet Photography), Josh Norem (The Furrtographer) and Jaymi Heimbuch for immortalizing my loves. (“Gasp! she’s linking to other amazing, local photographers, competition!”, nope, that’s just what friends do, we believe in always crediting others and we happen to think our colleagues are pretty awesome. So please go visit these amazing people.)

To see the photographs these beautiful photographers have gifted us with, check out the slideshow below.

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