Thursday, April 29, 2010

Travels around Ireland

We have finally gotten to an area where we have good internet. I am really enjoying my trip to Ireland. It is so fun to be back with Michelle and to spend a bit of time exploring together. Our travels have taken us through countryside, seaside villages & some lively cities. My favorite thus far is definitely the Burren and Connemara. The Burren is quiet and welcoming. These first few pictures are from that area. It is definitely remote and I am sure Michelle & her friends had some moments of feeling quite isolated while at the Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughan. But the area is just beautiful. The picture above was taken while we were walking back from the college to Michelle's house. Most days she would take a portion of The Burren Way to and from class. Now that spring is here the path takes you through beautiful fields, over many stone fences, through the rocky passes of the Burren. You would think an area that is so full of limestone and surrounded by large hills of stone would seem barren, but it doesn't. In fact, the picture above makes me think of a forest full of magic and fairies...

A picture for Jay!

We took a day trip to the Connemara area. This part of Ireland is like nothing I have ever seen before. The land is so unique and the views were incredible. It is not very populated and I imagine life is hard for those who do chose to live there. Many farm peat for a living or raise sheep. The mountains were a remarkable brownish-red color and there were pockets of green, usually centered around some water source. It was typical Irish rainy weather the day were were there and the pockets of sunshine that broke through the clouds made the views even more dramatic.

We also visit Kylemore Abby while were were on our short jaunt. This was built by an Englishman, Mitchell Henry for his Irish bride, Margaret, in the late 1800's. It was meant to be a vacation home, but they loved the area so much they began to spend more time there. Henry was a great innovator and shared his ideas with his neighbors. At this estate, he created the first walled Victorian garden in Ireland. An order of nuns who took over in 1920 (after the estate came up for sale). They repaired the estate and have been working to restore the garden in the last few years.

Visiting Galway was lots of fun. It is a beautiful city with many fun things to see and a shopping area with musicians playing all types of Irish tunes. The people were very friendly and we really enjoyed the long seaside promenade. The lighthouse out in Galway Bay is said to be the last light of home the millions of Irish saw as they left their homeland for America during the Great Hunger.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Luck of the Irish!

Well, I am off to Ireland for a fun two week vacation with my daughter, Michelle. She has been studying at the Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughn this semester and just finished her classes today! Congratulations, Michelle :-)

I have been planning this trip for months so you might imagine my level of unhappiness when that volcano started messing up my plans. In fact, I was actually scheduled to leave yesterday, but my flight into Shannon was cancelled. However, I am truly and clearly Irish because the airspace over the Emerald Isle has opened again! And, I am guessing there must not be many folks deciding that it is a good idea to travel towards the ash covered skies of Europe, so I was able to jump into a seat for tomorrow....YAY! No risk, no reward...right?

Anyway, Synergy Photography is on hiatus for the next two weeks. Don't worry all you folks who have ordered prints and products. The labs have our orders and all of it should arrive shortly after I return home on May 4th. I will have email so please send me a note if you need me...I will be happy to answer while I am tipping back a pint or two at the pub ;-)

As I seldom travel anywhere without my camera, I will be sure to post some pictures of our wanderings through the Irish countryside. Check back often to see our adventures!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Its the Most Wonderful Time of the Year....

...for graduating seniors anyway! And it is for those of us who are so proud of them and their accomplishments. Our family has traveled through this experience three times already and this year we hit a new milestone...our oldest is graduating from the University of Virginia with both undergraduate and graduate degrees. Gotta love those five year programs!

As for my photography, I have to say that I really enjoy photographing high school seniors. It is fun to meet them, get to know them a little and then to work together to create some unique portraits that say something about who they are right this point in their lives. At Synergy Photography, we limit the number of sessions we do each week, so that we can give each client the attention and focus they deserve. There are a few places in our area that will happily take many times the number of senior clients than we do, but I can guarantee you won't match our quality or commitment to making each session fun, relaxing and a memorable experience for everyone.

Here is a quick peek at some of the senior sessions we have had in the last few weeks. If you are interested in learning more about us, please email or give us a call - 540.820.3759! We are currently booking for the end of May and into June of this year.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Chapman Wedding | Shenandoah Valley Wedding Photographer

April weather in Virginia is usually a roller coaster of temperature & precipitation, but not this year! We have had wonderfully warm days and I think most everyone is happy to enjoy the sun after our two blizzards earlier this year. This lovely couple was especially happy that the weather was so nice in early April! The Chapman wedding was a beautiful event held at the Cross Keys Vineyard. Great venue, great food and great friends made for a memorable wedding. Steve & Laura, I hope you all enjoy your sneak peek!