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I want to learn how to drive a monster truck in 2016….

paigegreen11102015-000014890001sSaid my four-year-old, after my very inspirational and thought-provoking lesson on new year’s resolutions.

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I was hoping for, “I want to help more in the kitchen,”

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Or, “pick up trash on the beach.”

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But unfortunately I don’t get to pick his new year’s resolutions… just my own.

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And this year I am dragging my feet into the new year.

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Because I am a little terrified.

paigegreen04262015-544A1679sLife is moving much too fast. 

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While I am so incredibly ready for some long overdue and very exciting changes that are coming in 2016…

paigegreenLindsay102715-000010780002sI am not ready (and never will be) for other 2016 changes…

christmas2015-544A508024 years of Carbondale Christmases at my grandparents’ house ended this year.

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Last summer my grandfather announced that he is moving to a retirement home in Chicago by the end of January.

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While we all know this is the best decision for him…

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If we could put it off a little longer we would.

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But just like we can’t choose other people’s new year’s resolutions…

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Unfortunately we don’t get to control their actions either… just our own.

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So it is another reminder that life is short and we only get one chance to get it right.

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In trying to figure out what new year’s resolutions I should make, to help prepare me for the emotional hurdles of 2016…

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And in honor of this being my tenth anniversary as a professional photographer and my twentieth year out of high school,

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I did some journal digging while I was at my mom’s house for Christmas and I found some notes I wrote on January 22nd, 2006, from a website that was giving advice to photographers.

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Since I did not take much of that advice 10 years ago, it seems fitting that I write them again, in the hopes that it won’t take me another 10 years to get them done.

Life/Photography goals for 2016:

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Find your own vision and develop a style that will set you apart from the 30,000 other people who want your job.

paigegreenLindsay10272015-037sFind a subject you love and spend 10 hours a day, every day, photographing and editing.

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Study all major photographers’ work and life. Study all major painters, writers and composers’ work and life.

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Set a standard for your photography and your professionalism as someone who gets the job done above and beyond the call of duty.

paigegreenHabitat05142015-554-editsDon’t let yourself get in the way of yourself. If it were easy, everyone would be a professional photographer.

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Remember you are only as good as your last picture.

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Floss.
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Keep your overhead low.

Laura25-000014860009bwsStart a retirement account now.

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Keep your credit rating as close to perfect as possible – pay bills on time.

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Keep a separate account for taxes and divert a percentage that is equivalent to your tax rate. Always pay taxes on time.

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Don’t be afraid to ask for an advance for large jobs.

544A0165Don’t piss people off unless absolutely necessary.

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Get liability insurance.

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Diversify client base.

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Register copyright on everything.

paigegreenAnnPoe08222015-036 Get model releases whenever you can.

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Make sure everyone is clear, in writing, who gets what, for how long, how much.

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Never leave home without your camera, be ready always.

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Always be professional: equipment, dress, knowledge, research client.

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Call before to let client know what to expect and call immediately after to let them know how it went – without talking about images.

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Edit immediately and deliver.

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Assist but don’t get stuck assisting.

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Study as much work as you can – try to figure out how images were made and get inspiration for your own images.

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Think about stock photography.

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Family is forever – everything else is not.

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Take a workshop.
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Don’t neglect your personal work.

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Learn how to relate to people.

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Find 50 strangers, introduce yourself, shoot a portrait that says something about who they are not just what they do.

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Invest.

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Have fun.

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Happy 2016 and here’s to learning how to drive a monster truck through all that life has to offer.

 

Grow Your Jeans…

Do you know who made your jeans or where they came from?

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Thanks to Fibershed’s “Grow Your Jeans” campaign, I do know who made my jeans and where they came from…

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The inspiring Sally Fox grew the organic cotton in the Capay Valley,

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The fearless Rebecca Burgess grew and composted the indigo at different farms around the Bay Area,

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The talented Leslie Terzian wove the yarn into fabric at her studio on the Shipyard at Hunters Point, San Francisco,

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And the lovable and meticulous Daniel DiSanto measured twice, designed and sewed a pair just for me at his studio in Alameda.

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While this is sadly not me… this is how happy I look when I put on my new sustainable/local/custom made jeans… now I just need some tops to go with them…

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Click the following links to learn more about Fibershed and the Grow Your Jeans event that was held in Bolinas on October 3rd, 2015.

 

 

Calling all Photograph(Fight)ers…

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The Valley Fire could become one of the top 5 most destructive fires in our history; the toll on our region’s landscape and community is heartbreaking.

I was able to raise $3,150 in 24 hours for the Valley Fire relief efforts by offering free photo shoots in exchange for donations.

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Think what we could raise if every photographer made the same offer in their community.

If you are a photographer who would like to help, here is the challenge offer:

FREE one hour digital photo shoots in (name of your town) to the first 10 people who donate ($$) or more to one of the following organizations that is raising money to support the relief efforts for the victims of the Lake County area fires.

Please use the hashtag #photographfighter so we can see everyone who is playing and their photos.

These are the nonprofits my clients donated directly to:

Redwood Credit Union

Petaluma Animal Shelter

Thank you for participating and I look forward to seeing the difference our photography community can make.

There is no place like home… (free photo shoot offer at your home)

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“No matter who you are or where you’re from, home means something to you. Homes serve as the backdrop for our childhood memories as well as the background of the interpersonal dramas in our lives. Our homes hold an iconic status as a place we can always belong. A place we can always be ourselves, let our guard down and still be loved. Home is a place you look forward to, a place where just being yourself is good enough,” Dr Robi Ludwig.

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As of September 15th, 2015, Reuters is reporting that 584 homes have been destroyed by the Lake County fires.

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While having your home burn down isn’t the end of the world, when your whole community (13,000 residents) and the land around it (more than 67,000 acres) burns down as well… I think it might feel pretty close to the end of your world.

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It is certainly not something I ever hope to experience.

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This being the first time I have lived so close to a crisis of this scale, it is so powerful and moving to see my community rally together to help the families who have lost everything and I want to do my part as well.

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So I am offering FREE one hour digital photo shoots in Petaluma to the first 10 people who donate $250 or more to one of the following organizations that is raising money to support the relief efforts for the victims of the Lake County area fires (value $450.)

Redwood Credit Union

Petaluma Animal Shelter

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Once you make a donation directly to the organization, please send your proof of payment to: studio@paigegreen.com and we will set up a time to photograph your family in your home.

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Offer is good for a one hour family digital photo shoot in Petaluma and it includes five high-resolution digital files. Additional files can be purchased. Additional travel fee for photo shoots outside of Petaluma. 

After Three Years…

Three years of photo shoots (60 families, 50 weddings, 40 businesses, 30 Fibershed, 25 portraits, 7 books and one documentary movie) later and I have finally updated my website.

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It is very exciting to see so many of the people, businesses, books, nonprofits and documentary projects I have photographed all living together on one website.

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Every single day I feel incredibly lucky to be able to support my family through photography.

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And I absolutely would not be able to do so without the help from my talented and beautiful community.

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This is a huge THANK YOU to everyone who has trusted me to take their photo, shared my name with others and given me words of encouragement.

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This is a huge THANK YOU to all of the assistants, stylists, producers, graphic designers, and hair and makeup artists who have helped make the photo shoots much more fun and even more successful.

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Community and teamwork make everything better and I can’t wait to see what we create together next.

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Lots of Love,

Paige

What photos of children on a beach should look like…

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Today I received my film from our annual family trip to the beach, which included four rolls filled with images of my two boys (ages 3 and 1) and their cousins running on the sand and swimming in the ocean.

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At the same time I am looking at photos of my three-year-old on the beach, the world is furiously debating a very different photo of a three-year-old boy on the beach: the photograph of Aylan Kurdi’s tiny body in a bright red T-shirt and dark shorts, face-down in the surf.

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Aylan, his 5-year-old brother, Galip, and mother, Rehan, 35, were among 12 people, including other children, who died after two boats capsized while attempting to flee their war-ravaged homeland, Syria.

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To hear the little boys’ father talk about what happened in the ocean and how he tried to save his sons is unbearable. I feel a sadness for him I did not know was possible before having my own kids.

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If there is any comfort that can come to the father of Aylan, hopefully it is that because of the photograph of his three-year-old son dead on the beach, the world is now finally paying attention after:

  • four years of armed conflict
  • 200,000 deaths
  • more than 4 million refugees, mostly women and children,
  • and an estimated 12.2 million people in need of humanitarian assistance inside Syria, including 5.6 million children, according to the UN.

What if the photo of this one sweet boy washed up on the beach can help save the 5.6 million other children who are still living in danger?

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What if everyone who saw that photo of little Aylan on the beach signed a petition to allow more refugees in their country and sent a donation to nonprofits who are on the ground working to help refugees?

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So in honor of Aylan Kurdi, I have signed a petition and sent a donation, because I want to live in a world where the only photos of little boys on the beach look like this…paigegreenBeach09022015-000074240006To learn more about how you can help the migrant crisis please click here: http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/28/world/iyw-migrant-how-to-help/

 

What hate burns, love rebuilds…

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As we get ready to wave our American flags this weekend, I feel extra proud of our country because of the recent human rights accomplishments we have made with the Supreme Court ruling in support of gay marriage.

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Now I want us to take our celebration of love and human rights to the black communities of America and put an end to racism, starting with rebuilding the black churches that have been attacked in the South.

daughters-2webWe can not stand back and let their churches burn to the ground as the Confederate Flag flies over their heads.

40170013I was born and raised in South Carolina, so I know how essential churches are to these communities and it breaks my heart that these acts of terrorism, committed by our own citizens, still happen and that we, as a country, are not doing more to prevent them.

belton-07-01webI want to do something to let these communities know that we will not tolerate this kind of violence in our country and that we will help them through this tragedy.

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So I looked for an organization that is raising money to help the black communities rebuild their churches and I found a website created by the Christ Church Cathedral (Episcopal) and I have made a donation.daughters-webBecause when I wave my American flag this weekend, I want to wave it with pride. Pride in the belief that we are a country that stands up for love and human rights for all of its citizens.arannmississippiIf you would like to join me in standing up for love and human rights this Fourth of July, please click here: “What hate burns, Love rebuilds.”

11261802_10153287217550020_5731177427677169330_nThank you for your support and Happy Fourth of July, from my family to yours.

The Opera House…

If you ask me what kind of photography I like best… this photo shoot for The Opera House is my answer…

It was a tad bit crazy, thanks to the Petaluma winds and a slight miscalculation of how much time it would take to transfer an entire store of amazing props to a field.

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But we managed to pull it off… And once the kids finally arrived, it was so fun to see them grab costumes and scatter into the fields and up the trees. I loved being able to turn in any direction and see kids having fun just being kids… the hardest part was deciding which cute kids to follow.

HUGE thanks: to Kelly Collins Geiser for inviting us to play under the glorious oak trees of her future home; to all our lovely models for coming to play with us; to Terra Livingston and Amber Driscoll, of The Opera House, for providing such a lovely collection of things to photograph; and to Debbie Wilson and her super star helpers, Henry and Lola, for all their hard work.

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To learn more about The Opera House and the lovely handmade art they sell, visit them in Petaluma on Kentucky Street, or online here: http://www.operahousecollective.com/

Farm Photo Workshop: Until Next Time

You work so hard planning and promoting an event, with fingers crossed that people will want to come. And when the day finally arrives and the people do come, you hold your breath hoping that everything goes smoothly and that the people will find what they came for.

So when the sun eventually slips down the sky, at the end of your long awaited day, and you step back and watch the people, who started the day as strangers, sitting close, sharing a meal, laughing about the day and dreaming aloud about the next time we can do this all again… it feels really, really good to finally exhale, sit down on the bench with them and raise a glass to next time.

HUGE thank you to the incredibly talented and extremely generous Farm Photo Workshop guest teachers: Sara Remington, Karen Shinto and Alysia Andriola. And equally HUGE thanks to all the FPW helpers: Jude Mooney, Laura Schneider, Alicia Deal, Carolyn Korch and Arann Harris. And last, but definitely not least, THANK YOU to Mimi Luebbermann for once again so graciously opening up her incredible farm and allowing Farm Photo Workshop to call Windrush Farm our home. 

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