Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Puppy Love - Estella and Oliver

Remember the gift certificate that I donated to Valley Dogs Rescue? Well, it was redeemed yesterday by a very lovely Doctor in town and her two Miniature Pinschers, Estella and Oliver. So much fun to play with and photograph....just a little sneak peek of how our afternoon went ;-D

A Little Something For You

How's that desktop of yours...ready for a new picture? Then download this and install on your computer for a new look.

My girlfriend Donna made this snowman for my home many Christmases ago. No matter where I am, when I unpack this little guy I think of her and the good times I've had with her. Family and friends are so important, and it's the little things like this that keep us connected. This month's desktop image is my Holiday gift to you. Please feel free to download and enjoy.

Keep checking back for new images. A little something different, but something always for you.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Art and Kendra Get Married!

Thank you Art and Kendra for such a wonderful time on your Wedding Day!!!

I met Art and Kendra at the Fairmont Princess in Scottsdale for a fun portrait session pre-ceremony. They were so wonderful to work with, and we really did some unique Holiday Wedding Photos. You Two were great!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010


So, what happens when you go camping in a forest that is just steps outside of an historic town and your significant other is addicted to American Pickers? You have him poke his head out of the tent on Saturday morning while you're building a fire to hear "Wanna Go Garage Saleing?"

Hmmmmm, breakfast next to a campfire with a view to a lake, or sitting in the car all morning...guess I really love him. now you must be thinking "Whaaaaaat?" Yeah I know, the car show. So, we're driving through downtown Prescott and there is a fair at Heritage Park and, you guessed it, a Rod Show. I looooove old cars and this made the morning magic for me. There's just something so sensual about the old designs, the big rounded fenders and all the chrome. I could spend hours photographing metal.

Here is just one of the images I came up with.....sometimes the simplest pleasure come from doing something that pleases someone else, just being along for the ride.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sneak Peek: The Gomez Family

I love it when I photograph a couple and they come back and I get to photograph them again. Here is Melanie and Luis, and now Michael, too. Such a sweet, sweet family. Thanks for letting me share an afternoon with you :-D

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Little Something For You

How's that desktop of yours...ready for a new picture? Then download this and install on your computer for a new look.

Fall can be cold in Northern Arizona. This window detail was photographed in Seligman, AZ, a strip of town that is a throwback to a simpler time. This month's desktop image is my Thanksgiving gift to you. Please feel free to download and enjoy.

Keep checking back for new images. A little something different, but something always for you.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Bark, Bid, Buy, Make a Difference

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love dogs...and wine...did I mention I love dogs? This Saturday you can imbibe in a little of both and help a great cause at the same time.

Come to Su Vino Winery November 6 2010, 1-5 pm. and support Valley Dogs Rescue. Su Vino is located at 7035 E. Main Street, Suite 110 in old town Scottsdale.

Join in the Silent Auction and help support some beautiful pups looking for forever homes. I've donated a Puppy Love portrait session for this special event and hope that one of you will use it to make a forever memory of your own furry friend while helping some dogs in need. You'll feel good doing it...I promise.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010


I've always loved going to the fair...back home we'd go to the Mid-State Fair in Paso Robles... roasted corn and those little tiny Cinderella Donuts with coffee at the end of the evening, thunderous turkey legs walking through the Midway and the music... all for the love of the music. Classic rock and country, Credence Clearwater Revival and Three Dog Night...Johnny Cash 3 times, meeting him at the end of a concert and still hanging on to the guitar pick he gave me a lifetime ago.

Now I go to the Arizona State Fair. Big Indoor Colosseum, Bret Michaels, Sheryl Crow. The Midway's the same and I will always love watching the hot dog pig races. Some things never change, these are the simple pleasures in life.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Holiday Cards Are Here!

It's time to get a little something off your Naughty List...designing your Holiday Cards. Here are two of my favorite covers, just waiting to be personalized with your favorite family portrait. Right now you can even save while getting this Must-Do done. Your family portrait with 25 custom designed cards for just $ Holiday Gift to You!

Sessions are limited and end November 10 so be sure to book yours now.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Puppy Love - Gwen

Is there anything sweeter than a puppy? Meet Gwen, 11 1/2 weeks of Pugly love. Soft, soft puppy paws and a jaw that could crack a walnut. I wonder what she thought being asked to sit a hundred times when she doesn't even really comprehend the meaning of the word yet.

Puppies, like babies change so very fast. I met Gwen two weeks ago and I swear she was half the size. Capturing a puppy moment is as rewarding as making an image of tiny fingers and toes, it's capturing a moment that can never be found again...and makes great wall art, too.

Got a furry child of your own? Take the next step from cell phone pictures and schedule a professional portrait'll be glad you did.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Little Something For You

How's that desktop of yours...ready for a new picture? Then download this and install on your computer for a new look.

It's time for a little something scary. This month's desktop image is my Halloween gift to you. Please feel free to download and enjoy.

Keep checking back for new images. A little something different, but something always for you.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Gifts of Appreciation on FaceBook

Hi! Hey, it's me, your intrepid photographer....I wanted to tell you about something I do each year and invite you to join me. Each year on my Facebook Studio Page I have a month long Holiday Party. Virtual eggnog, Christmas cookies, maybe some mistletoe, too. Real presents...yup, real presents. Each weekday I pick a name from my list of people who 'liked' me and give a gift. What kind of surprises are given? Coffee gift cards, movie passes, portrait sessions and more.

This is your official invitation to join me. The more the merrier, I always say, and it'd be fun to have you be a part of our page. So, if you like to have fun, like to win prizes and think it's cool to talk photography, just click here. Hope to see you on the page, soon ;-)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Is Your Halloween Green?

Halloween is one of those great American traditions. It's also an opportunity to help our families think green. Here is a short list of things you can do make this Holiday both fun and eco-friendly.

* Intersperse Halloween themed stoneware with color coordinated dishes for a scary look that is re-used year after year. My favorite coffee mug says Eek! in black, yellow and orange allowing me to mix it and a couple other Halloween themed pieces with the dishes I already have.
* Give the kids black colored gift bags to collect their tricks and treats. That plastic pumpkin usually gets thrown away after one use, so why not try a gift bag in basic black that can be used later with a few embellishments for an elegant holiday wrap.
* Recycle your Halloween Party invitations. Write your invitation directly on a brown paper bag and ask your guests to bring the bag to the party. Drop an LED candle light into each one and - Voila! Instant luminarias!
* Give out candy with a conscience. Sweets like Endangered Species Chocolate Halloween Treats are made of sustainably-grown and 100% ethically traded dark or milk chocolate, unbleached beet sugar (for sweetening), and only all-natural ingredients.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Empty Bowls

Some things just help you to feel grateful....for me, gratitude is an emotion that wells up in me each year when I go to Empty Bowls. Thankful for the roof over my head, the food in the kitchen, that when I go hungry it's by choice and disorganization, not by circumstance.

Yesterday I drove to the Arizona Center, stood in line and selected a bowl...then stood in line again to accept a couple scoops of pasta, as much as someone who goes hungry might have in an entire day. I sat on a step in the shade and gave thanks for the life that I have and not the one that I might have, if a different road had been taken.

Empty Bowls is a personal way to make a difference. The artists make the bowls that represent the one meal a day many homeless have, and spending $12 for a bowl filled with a simple meal is a way to help and experience making a difference.

You can participate at select AJ's Fine Foods today from 10:30am to 2pm.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Congratulations Scottsdale! Parents Magazine's #1 Pick!

That's right! The November issue of Parents Magazine has named Scottsdale as the best city in the U.S. to raise a baby. To celebrate, we are photographing Scottsdale's babies (Phoenix and surrounding areas, too) and adding a 10x10 canvas wrap to every order [$250 value]. Bookings are limited and the party ends 11-15 so be sure to book yours now. 480.366.4476.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Photographing Tara Sutphen

I recently had the privilege of photographing noted author Tara Sutphen at the Center for Creative Life in Sedona. Tara is the author of Blame it On Your Past Lives and Soul Agreements, numerous DVDs and is the host of Transformations With Tara, a weekly radio show on Contact Talk Radio in Seattle, WA.

Photographing Tara was for a very special project. Tara was recently asked by the Alaskan Elders to be the spokesperson for Awakening Spiritual Unity, an Alaskan Tribes Project to help re-establish The wellness, wholeness, and dignity of the Alaskan Native Americans utilizing the traditional ancestor's teachings. For more information about Awakening Spiritual Unity, write to:

Tara can be enjoyed on Fridays at 9am on Contact Talk Radio and will be speaking at the Conscious Children's Network Conference April 2nd and 3rd 2011 in Tempe, AZ at Arizona State University.

Tara, thank you. I so enjoyed our time together as well as our friendship. Wishing you much success with Awakening Spiritual Unity and your dedication to the Alaskan Tribes.

Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Back! Our annual Fall Portrait Special with an added twist. 2 Events, 2 weekends. Your choice, bring the fam to the park or invite me to your home. Create a new family memory, update your family portrait and tackle that big item on your Naughty List, your Holiday gift shopping. All this and save money, too. Hurry, some dates have already been booked and the rest will go fast.

Can't wait to make a memory with you and your family this Fall.

Sunday, August 15, 2010


If you see me around town toting this monster, you can be sure that either I:

a) Have just gone on an adventure
b) About to go on an adventure, or
c) I'm dreaming about going on an adventure

When I was a little kid I was extremely sheltered [yeah, that was MY dad yelling "STOP, you'll kill yourself!!!" when I stepped off the sidewalk] so I escaped into my own world of distant lands and foreign cultures and wished I could grow up fast to be a personal witness to the world around me. Ancient Egypt, Asia, you name it, I planned to see it with my own eyes when I was all grown up.

Hip pack ready for the desert with a shoulder strap worthy of a day at the Louvre, this is the bag that holds my life on the road. Big enough for a camera and lens, long enough for maps and two outside pouches for water, I'm girl scout prepared for the road ahead. Along with the normal paraphenalia a woman always has, my magical bag has a pocket dedicated to whatever life throws at me, from pocket knife to rain poncho, compass to waterproof matches. There's some strange stuff in that front pocket and sometimes I laugh at myself wondering what kind of trouble I expect to get into as I head into the unknown with my sturdy red bag.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Recent Images - Recent Events

I recently was invited to photograph a private tasting held by Fresh From the Kitchen, LLC and also this year's 2010 Annual Cool Off In Style party hosted by Pourmasters, helping to raise money for Saint Mary's Food Bank. I so enjoyed working with these wonderful vendors documenting these events.

Flowers at Private Tasting by Ever After Florals

Organic Greens and Fresh Strawberries, Fresh From The Kitchen, LLC

One of the lovely performers at Cool Off In Style 2010

Our Fabulous Hosts of Cool Off In Style, PourMasters!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Green Wedding Friday - Reduce, Re-use, Recycle, SURPRISE!

Ever walk into an antique store, pick up a box or tin and open it, half expecting a surprise? Some ancient love note or a few dollars left hidden for you to discover in the dark recesses of that opened container? I love hidden suprises, and when I can re-purpose a container it's even better.

Today I want to share a couple of treats...edible, re-useable, a business tool for me, a DIY wedding favor for you.

I love, love, love Moo Cards which are made in England. They are chewing gum sized business cards. The beauty in Moo Cards is that you can have a different photo on every card in the same order. They all have to have the same text on the back, but anything and everything can go on the front. Business cards for me, a mini album of your happiest times for your guests.

Vintage style tins are in right now, from Altoids gum to Jones Soda candies and Trader Joe's Chocolate Nibs. We all like to have a package of some sort of breath fresheners at hand, so use products in these long skinny tins, save them, and refill with Moo cards of your adventures as a couple with your names and wedding date on the backs. Your guests will think they are going home with a tin of candy til the first person at the table opens their box to find the sweetest treat of all, You!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Wedding 101: The Bridal Session

In today's economy many couples are trying to find the least costly way to have a wedding extravaganza and that includes cutting the photography budget by having a friend do the photography. While I hesitated to even write that statement and thereby giving someone the idea that using a friend or inexperienced photographer is a good one, I know that is the reality right now [yes, my head is screaming "DON'T DO IT, YOU'LL KILL YOURSELF, or at least regret it in years to come].

Here's a great compromise: Schedule a "Day After" or "Trash The Dress" session with your favorite Pro. Often these sessions are done on a weekday and are quite a bit more economical than full service wedding photography on a weekend. What are the benefits of this? Going out at the perfect light of the day without the pressure of getting back to your dinner. A beautiful time with your new spouse without the interruptions of well meaning wedding guests. Going to your favorite places that you would never have time to travel to during the course of your wedding day....And most important of all? Time with a professional photographer who has been trained to work with you and your gown in the best possible way.

Want to add a little Zip? Make it a destination portrait session. Bring your wedding gown to the beach, the Grand Canyon, Sedona or even a nearby lake like Saguaro or Watson...a glorious backdrop to make some amazing images.

This way you get the beautiful portraits that you'll enjoy throughout your life, the images that you'll be proud to hang on your walls, the ones you'll really want to share with your family and your friends.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Portraits of Appreciation Sneak Peek - Mazz Brant

Mazz Brant is the latest sneak peek in my Portraits of Appreciation series. She was so enjoyable to work with. Check out her headshots that we created recently.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Portraits of Appreciation Sneak Peek - Valerie and Brian Bolitho, Blueprint Affairs, LLC

I love my vendors! I am in a great community of wedding professionals and they help me so much that I wanted to give back to, I'm gifting them with portraits. Here is a little sneak peek of Valerie and Brian Bolitho of Blueprint Affairs, LLC, one of my favorite event planning companies. Valerie and Brian are so high energy and willing to try anything, so I knew we would really have some fun. The Bolithos were great to work with and Blueprint Affairs is a great foundation to start with for the wedding of your dreams ;-D

Friday, April 30, 2010

Freebie Friday - Kid Session!

ATTN: Mommies and Daddies...It's Freebie Friday! The first parent to comment on my blog wins a Child Portrait Session from Marcia The Art of Photography.

Winner, you have 5 days to connect with me, after that your prize is null and void. Make sure you leave your full name, email address and daytime phone number in your comment. I promise I won't publish your contact info on the blog. If you don't leave your contact info you cannot win so make sure I can reach you!

Here's the fine print:
Up to 3 children!!!
Child session location is Scottsdale, AZ only.
Child Session must be completed by April 9, 2010

What you get:
Pre-Session Consultation
Child Session
Viewing Session to select your images
Personal Website for one month
3 Artist Choice watermarked images to use on Social Media to share with your family and friends.
1 5x7 of your choice.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Green Wedding Friday - A Discussion Between Photographers

A few weeks ago I found this remark on my Facebook profile: "What does one do to become "Eco Friendly"? Is there a test or something?" It was from a local photographer and I referred him to the website to get started. While it's important to work toward lowering our carbon footprints, I believe it's vital to discuss where this is going and why it's important.

My friend Angela Simpson owner of Angelina Rose Photography and I have lately been discussing these issues and I wanted to share our discussion with you.

Is Green Photography a trend or a movement?

Marcia: It is definitely a movement, as an industry more of us are seeking to waste less, recycle more. in the past year I have seen more choices in the use of soy inks, recycled materials for albums and innovative packaging that can be re-used by the consumer after the photos have been delivered.

Look at what we've seen in the general community in just the past few months in terms of going solar, recycling, etc. As the people around us look for ways to conserve, recycle and re-use, it is only natural that they will want to extend their efforts to seeking businesses that support their beliefs about protecting the environment.

Angela: As we become more aware of the environmental impact our actions make upon earth and its inhabitants, I believe it’s vital to start making changes and offset our carbon footprint any way possible. It is a fact that weddings are among the events that make a huge impact on carbon emissions and waste issues. If we think about it, everything that goes into creating the atmosphere of a wedding; details such as materials, party favors, catering options, flower arrangements, transportation, etc. leave behind tons of wasted product and food. A good percentage ends up in the garbage.

With the step towards an eco-friendly wedding, we are able to offset some of that carbon waste by using natural and recycled product to reduce our footprint. More and more brides are getting creative and personalizing their weddings. I think making their wedding a green wedding provides an alternative option and narrower focus on what’s important to them and cutting out all of the unnecessary things like paper aisle runners and cheesy traditional cake toppers.

It was only a matter of time before the eco-conscious people starting thinking about their carbon offset for weddings as well as their daily activities. I think green weddings are a movement.

Having a Green Wedding is more expensive than a traditional wedding, True or False?

Marcia: I believe you can actually save money by having a Green Wedding. Think about the tenets of this, "reduce, re-use, recycle" and you can quickly see the savings. The average cost of a wedding gown is $1505 for a garment that is used once. Purchasing a pre-worn gown can save as much as 70% and borrowing a gown from a friend might be only the cost of shipping. Some photographers offer direct downloads as a part of their package or an adjunct, saving the families money on reprint costs. Every part of the wedding has the opportunity to find savings either by re-using, consolidating or re-purposing.

Angela: If people continue practicing green alternatives, I feel that having a green wedding will become very cost efficient. I think we’ve already seen that the more thought one puts in to their wedding day, the more personalized things become and having a wedding outside, for instance, whether in your backyard or at a park, already saves on electricity and venue fees.

Do you believe that Green Photography stays in the studio?

Marcia: No. At least for me it has been a lifestyle. Along with selling digitally and offering eco-friendly products and re-useable packaging, we compost, recycle as much as we can, consolidate trips in the car and I work in natural light as much as possible. Future plans include going solar and making the home/workspace more energy efficient. Is there room for improvement? Well, yeah, I'm still REALLY bad about soft drinks in individual plastic bottles, but at least they are recycled ;)

Angela: Over the past 3 years I have steadily transitioned my business standards to match my personal eco-conscious lifestyle. So, no, I do not feel that Green Photography stays in the studio. Everything I do on a daily basis reflects just as much in the to-do's for my business .
I work by day so there's no dependency on artificial lighting, my light bulbs are CFL's and I am currently finishing the switch to all energy efficient track lighting.
I route out my car trips and plan stops here and there as needed. Since I live outside of downtown Phoenix, a trip to the post office then leads to a meeting with a client that leads to a stop at the grocery store on my way home.

I refuse, recycle, and reuse a whole lot and have reduced the amount of CD's and DvD's that I use down to an absolute minimum. Yes, I recycle CDs as well. =)

How do you see Green Photography benefiting the public?

Marcia: Green Photography offers a way to create high quality family heirlooms in a lower impact method to the environment. Families can now have their personal history books created with post consumer product, soy inks, made by companies that work as hard to utilize eco-friendly production methods as to create beautiful products. Every step we take as individuals helps the whole.

Angela: With the use of digital imagery, information is passed through the internet at warp speed. With Green Photography, we get immediate results and reactions to the importance of a message. It's there to be shared with the entire world.

If we had waited around for the recorded images to come back from Haiti and processed a week after the massive earthquake, relief would not have made it there in time.

We started with Green photography when the first digital camera came about.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wedding 101: Destination Engagement!

Remember when he asked you? Remember where you were? Don't you wish a photographer had secretly been there? Or, how about this...your best memories are together at that vacation destination, or the cabin you spend summer weekends at. Well, how about making new memories at that special place and creating captivating engagement photos at the same time?

Destination Engagement sessions are gaining fast popularity as couples want to capture that place that is as special as their love and many photographers are happy to accompany you to your favorite place for an expanded engagement session that includes their favorite locations. Transporting your wedding photographer to your special place is often a great way to create a collection of images for display at your wedding that will have the WOW factor you are looking for.

Imagine walking down the Vegas strip with the lights of Tinseltown as a sparkling backdrop or sitting amongst the trees along Oak Creek in Sedona. Maybe he (or you) popped the question on a sidewalk cafe in Santa Barbara or over coffee in Tucson. The place that became special because of an event is the perfect place to make your engagement pictures amazing.

Or, maybe you both are passionate about an activity you share, road tripping on your motorcycles or hiking the Grand Canyon. Again, taking your photographer with you for a little photosafari can make your engagement photos one of a kind.

Talk with your photographer about the possibilities for this unique experience. Considerations may be weather, travel rates, permit fees for using certain locations and of course how to dress and any props or accessories to bring. Also, talk about the kind of products that will work for you. If your photographer knows that your ultimate goal is a coffee table book, then her approach might be different than if the goal is three 24x30 vertical prints that are going over your couch. Make sure that you do this session far enough ahead of the wedding to be able to have the products you desire in time to show off at your wedding. Production times vary, but some items such as custom albums can take several weeks, so keep this in mind as your booking this session.

Your investment in this session may be part of your wedding package, an upgrade, or a la carte. Usually it will be based on expenses that the photographer will incur for travel, perhaps additional time as it may be an expanded session (half day, full day) and special products like a coffee table book or print collection.

Breaking out of the box to do your engagement session away from home will give you images that not only show your love, but show it in great travel style.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Meet Me Tonight At The Boojum Tree Open House

Yup, I'll be there, will you?

I love shooting here. It seems like every time I'm here there is something different to see and photograph, the staff is really nice and they make my job really easy. I get the best couples at this site. This is a gorgeous event venue in North Phoenix, a rainforest in the heart of the desert.

Come by from 6pm to 8pm for guided tours and then hang out with me and the other vendors. Maybe there'll be cake. Check it out, you'll love it. And if you do love it, book it, dates sell out fast here.

Friday, April 09, 2010

INTRODUCING::Bellies and Babes

I'm so excited to announce a new line, Bellies and Babes, maternity to 1st year photography - creatively capturing the moments when a couple becomes a family and baby adds just one more ;-D Until May 15, take advantage of special introductory rates for single sessions as well as Baby's First Year Plans.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Spring Wedding Special! Free Upgrade!

Who doesn't love saving money....Through April 24th, book your wedding with us and get a free album upgrade. Just think, your IRISpure book becomes an IRISsoul, A Soul book bumps up even higher to IRISluxe or Leather Craftsmen. The only qualification is you have to book by April 24th. Pretty easy, huh? That's how we like it at Marcia The Art of Photography ;)

101 Goals in 1001 Days - Update

It's been a while since I have worked on my goals list, but a couple recent forays up north gave me a chance to achieve a very easy one and start the process toward another.

I went winetasting. Goal #80 Visit an Arizona Winery. On a recent afternoon we spent an afternoon at Alcantara Vineyards and Winery in Cottonwood. The wine was wonderful and the tasting room brought back memories of all the times I had spent in Iris's kitchen in the old adobe at Rideau Vineyard back home.

We were in the middle of our flight when who should show up but the very hands on owner of the property, Barbara. It was like old home week meeting her because she has family on the California Central Coast in the wine business! We chatted for a long time about winemaking and in the end a bottle of her good Viognier found it's way into the back seat of our car.

A second trip up introduced us to Page Spring Vineyards. So pretty with it's balcony overlooking the vines. I know I'll be back here soon.

While I didn't take photos on these afternoon adventures (the vines were in hibernation) I know I'll be back. Goal #81 is Do An Arizona Winery Wedding[!] and after not being around wineries since moving from the Santa Ynez Valley 4 1/2 years ago, I'll be working extra hard to market myself for doing vineyard weddings here. I simply can't be away from it any longer ;)


To date, I have accomplished 41 out of 101 goals, found that a couple are no longer achievable, and a couple are simply not important anymore. I'm almost halfway through my 1001 days and it'll be interesting to see which goals are accomplished and which ones simply don't matter any more.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Meet Me Tonight At The Boojum Tree Open House

6pm to 8pm...beautiful venue, guided tours, moonlight and me. If you are planning a wedding or event you've got to check this out. Come over, take a walk through Phoenix's own little rainforest and then hang out a while, we always have a few vendors ready for a casual chat about your wedding needs and sometimes there's even cake.

See you there.