Wednesday, June 24, 2015 12:10PM
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If you've been following along with this project, you already know how awesome things have been going.  Long story short, I'm photographing women between the ages of 25-50 without their makeup.  There's a number of reasons why I've chosen to do this, and lots of other reasons why these women have chosen to participate.  And if you're reading this (thank you!), you probably have your own reasons for wanting to click on that link.  

Regardless of our reasons for being here, here we are at session 3/9 of my personal project I've named, "Stripped!"  I'm opening my studio one morning each month for the rest of 2015 to any woman who would like to be photographed without any makeup.  Kind of simple, kind of deep.

On the surface, the images we're coming up with together are simple, clean and classic black and white images of women.  Look a little deeper, and you'll find more.  You'll find mothers, professionals, entrepreneurs, educators and learners.  You'll find women who are single, some who are married, and some who are divorced.  You'll find fighters, strugglers and survivors.  You'll find strong brains, deep hearts and powerful souls.  They have all walked through my door for their own, different reasons.

Everyone has a story. 

One of my goals for this project has been to help women find their "reset" button.  Life's busy, life's hard.  We need to get back to basics, to be able to reconnect with what's important, and learn what's not.  I want them to feel as though they can do anything, and be confident enough to walk out the door in the morning, just as they are, and feel great about themselves, with or without makeup.  With or without wearing a fashionable outfit.  It's that whole "you are enough" thing that everyone's talking about right now, and I'm totally on board with it.

You are enough. 

You are intelligent, strong and beautiful.

You are enough.

Here are Venessa, Steph, Amanda and Erin.

 

 

When I look at them, I see beautiful lights in their eyes.  And I can almost hear their voices and laughter just by looking at them.  I see their trust in me through the lens, and I'm starting to understand the importance of feeding a woman's heart with love and truth.  I know I've said this before, but it's so true and I'm going to say it again: these women have no idea how much they're changing my life.   

When a woman leaves my studio after one of these shoots, all I want is for her to feel a new spark of confidence.  Whether it's a teeny tiny little speck of a spark, or a spark as large as the sun, I hope she will be able to go home that day, look in the mirror and think she's pretty awesome.  Because everyone else around her already knows it :)

--

Want to learn more?  Want to get involved?

Get caught up on previous blog posts about this project...

Part 1: http://www.lyndsaydoyle.ca/1-the-past-12-months/stripping-down-a-personal-project-part-1

Part 2: http://www.lyndsaydoyle.ca/1-the-past-12-months/stripped-part-2

Want to sit for a portrait?  If you're between the ages of 25-50, I'd love it if you got in touch with me: info@lyndsaydoyle.ca, and I'll let you know when our next session will be.  All you have to do is show up.  Our sessions are quick, fun and guidance is provided.  Know someone who may be interested?  Send them my way, or share this blog post with them.  The more the merrier!

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Lyndsay Doyle is a portrait photographer based in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  She is a married mom of two, owns and operates two small businesses, and simply loves life.   

 
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 7:07AM
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We're just days away from our official start to summer.  I have high hopes that warmer weather will magically appear along with the change in season, but hey, this winter lowered our standards significantly, so I'll be happy with the "no snow" status we've been enjoying this month.

The end of June brings the start of a parallel universe we like to call "no school" for two months.  While the calendar fills up with soccer practices and weekends at the cottage, parents everywhere are thanking the Gods of School Lunches for a little break in the schedule.  It's a good time to be young.  Long, warm days and cool evenings mean more time to play outside.  Dirt-stained knees and sunscreen-covered faces smile at me through the lens, and I can't stop thinking about how good life is right now.  The suburbs are the place to be in the summertime.  Grassy yards, piles of dirt waiting to be spread, and paved driveways are dream playgrounds for our kids; the con of falling off their bikes outweighed by the pro of having a place to ride them.  Friends come over to play, and we come out of hibernation, eager to light up the barbeque every day until it gets too cold to cook outside.

Golden sunsets peek through the trees in the backyard, providing a beautiful evening glow over our dandelion and forget-me-not covered lawn (we leave them for the bees - yup). And we sit on the deck, drinking beer and discuss weekend road trips we want to take. 

Like I said, life is good.  The sun is my battery.

Jace still happily poses for me when I ask him to, he's four right now.  I know this won't last forever, so I'm taking advantage of it while I can.  His big brother looks me right in the eye and now says "no" when I ask, and I respect that.  But I'm not below hiding in the tall grass at soccer games, though.  Heads up to all the other soccer parents if you see a strange lady in camo clothes lurking in the bushes at the field.  My intentions are good, I assure you :)

So, what's on our agenda this summer?  A whole lot of I-don't-know-what.  The calendar is full.  Soccer, playgrounds, cottage, cruisin' in the van-mobile, gas station slushies, and hitting the beach one or two (hundred) times.  The usual suburban stuff.  One thing I do know is that it will be over in the blink of an eye, so we're going to try to max out on the beauty of each day.  Pretty soon, we'll be back to making lunches, covering up the grill, and warming up those snow shovels.  Nova Scotia, you're such a tease.

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Lyndsay Doyle is a children's and lifestyle photgrapher based in the Halifax area of Nova Scotia.  She has a love/hate relationship with living in the suburbs, and is always looking for ways to turn chain link fences into beautiful backdrops for family photos.  She's still working on that.

info@lyndsaydoyle.ca



 
Sunday, May 31, 2015 1:26PM
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Are you stumbling upon this project for the first time?  Well, I'm really glad you did.  Feel free to click on the link below to see how it all started....

http://www.lyndsaydoyle.ca/1-the-past-12-months/stripping-down-a-personal-project-part-1

--

Stripped - Part 2.

Last week, I was lucky enough to spend the morning with Holly, Michelle, Kerry and Monique - all of whom stopped by the studio to be photographed for my "Stripped" project that I've been working on all year.  The project focusses on photographing women without any makeup, in clothing of their choice, and with very minimal guidance from me while being photographed.  The result is photos that are vulnerable, organic and very real.  For me, the images that we are creating exude strength, confidence and happiness, and that is exactly what I was hoping to achieve through this project.

To say I've been blown away by the supprt and positivity I've been receiving so far would be a huge understatement.  I've received a lot of really amazing emails from women who just want to say that they get it.  They understand why we need to do this, and they support me and every single woman who walks through my door.  The fact is that the ten women I've been lucky enough to photograph so far, whether they realize it or not, have each been instrumental in creating change.  Not only in me, but in so many others.  I hope they realize how important the message is that they're sending to women of all ages.  The message is simple: You are perfect just as you are.   

What I love most about these sessions, is that the photo shoot part of it lasts about 5 minutes.  That's it.  But the conversations can last for hours.  I'm not kidding - hours.  There's something that happens when you introduce something as intimate as photography to a woman who has "stripped" down in some way.  There's a vulnerability between both of us that translates into a trust and understanding that is pretty profound.  With these women, I've cried, listened, laughed and shared (and possibly told a dirty joke or two).  They're changing my life in a way that I really did not expect.  It's quite an honour to be entrusted with their feelings, and I promise to always honour that trust. 

Here are the final images from our latest session:

 

 

They're just beautiful, aren't they?

Want to get involved by being photographed?  I would love that.  Just email me at: info@lyndsaydoyle.ca and I'll keep you posted on upcoming sessions.  We'll be doing one each month for the rest of 2015.  Even if you're not ready to be photographed, but just want to follow along on the journey this year, let me know and I'll happily add you to the growing email list. 

Want to get involved by showing your support?  That would be really, really awesome.  The more people who get involved, the better.  You can help share the love by emailing this blog post with a friend you think may enjoy it, or share it on your own personal Facebook page (tag a friend!) - you just never know who may need to hear this message today.

As always, thank you for your ongoing support and your kind words and comments.  I'm not sure where we'll go with this project, or even what the end goal is, but I'm committed to following through on my plan to open my doors once a month to any woman between the ages of 25-50 who would like to have her portrait done.  The only rule is that you have to "strip" for me :)

See you next month!

--

Lyndsay Doyle is a photographer based in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  She thrives on creating meaningful portraits for families, individuals and small businesses.     

 
Saturday, May 23, 2015 2:35PM
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Suburbs - not city, not country.  Somewhere in between.  Few distinguishable features, and severly lacking for creative inspiration.  Drives creative types to look harder, look further, beyond the obvious. 

And I'm still looking....

Living in the suburbs does have its benefits.  Where we live is a great place to raise our kids; it's why we chose to live here and why we choose to stay here.  We have just enough space, neighbours are close (but not too close), and I like that a lot of the grocery store cashiers know my name.  I actually really like that.  I like that my kids' friends all live within the same telephone exchange.  I like that the bus ride doesn't take an hour (each way) for them.  And I love our friends who have decided to live the same life.  

I still have to drive to get to my mailbox, though.  That's a bit of a bummer.  And our resident raccoons are a real pain in the ass.  But what I dislike the most, is the way it looks.  Unfortunately, my inner creative is a superficial, shallow, snotty girl.  I want where I live to be drop dead gorgeous.  I want it to be exciting and vibrant and wild.  When I look out my window, I want to be blown away by beautiful sunsets and windy fields.  Or bright lights and the smell of rockin' parties that last all night.  Either or would be fine with me.  But I don't have that.  So what to do? 

Look for the beauty where you are.

 



Love the one(s) you're with.



Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.


Love is all around you - just open your eyes, Lyndsay.


All you can control is you.  It's my new personal motto.

Can the suburbs be beautiful?  Can they have a personality?  Do they have anything to offer my senses, my mind?  I'm sure the answer is yes.   Because every memory I will have of us as a FAMILY will be based here.  And that's the most beautiful thing in the world.  So I'm going to open my eyes a little wider.  Try to fall in love with what I see around me.  I already feel it in my heart, so now I'm going to work on some photos that celebrate us in our environment - the messy decks, the chain-linked parks, the minivans and the strip malls.  This is where my kids will grow up.  All their memories will be based here.  Their roots, and now mine are firmly planted here in the middle - not city, not country. 

Embrace the middle.  Embrace the anywhere.  Embrace the people, not where they are.  



Life in the suburbs.  This is it - Part 1.  Lots more to come as I explore this weird middle-land. 

    

 
Wednesday, April 29, 2015 11:54PM
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**CAUTION!  Long blog post ahead!  Grab a glass of wine or a coffee and get comfy for this one**


I thought long and hard about how I wanted to approach the written part of this project.  The photo part of it became pretty clear to me right from the start, but the explanation behind WHY I'm doing this project is a little loooooong.  To be honest with you, I think it's actually a very interesting story with a few plot twists and turns (how exciting!).  So, for those who want to read the whole story, here it is.  For those who want to skip the story - please don't.  Hear me out, there's a solid message in here, trust me.
--

Winters can be long for photographers, and it's not uncommon to see photographers dabble in some personal projects or challenges during the colder months in order to keep the creativity alive.  I've always thought about undertaking some sort of personal photography project, but no great and wonderful ideas ever struck a chord with me.  Around January 1st of every year, I start waiting for the inspiration, but it just never comes.  This year was no exception.  New Year's rolled around, and...nothing.  A couple of weeks later, I decided I needed a new headshot for my website and headed downstairs into my studio to set myself up. 

I spent quite a bit of time fixing myself up - hair, makeup, clothes, the works.  I took a bunch of photos of myself and uploaded them to my computer.  Total disappointment.  So I started again.  Different outfit, more photos, upload, rejection.  I didn't like the way I looked.  I could have stayed down there all day, trying and trying to get something I liked, but it probably wouldn't have helped.  I was discouraged when I went to bed that night, but couldn't stop thinking about the "whys."  WHY didn't I like the photos?  WHY was I being so hard on myself?  WHY weren't they good enough?  There was nothing wrong with the photos, the problem was with myself.  I didn't like the way I looked in my own photos.

I'm a problem solver.  I'm good at fixing things.  And here I was faced with a problem that I didn't even know I had, and I didn't know how to fix it.  Luckily, I'm a little on the stubborn side and I like a good challenge.  BUT, I've never worked on ME before, so I knew I was in for a bit of a ride. 

One thing I do know for sure, is that there is no one way to solve a problem.  And about myself, I do know that tackling a problem head-on works best.  So I set out to work on my little "problem" the best way I know how - with a bit of creativity. 

I decided to take my own photo every day for an entire month.  Luckily, February was about to start, and I earned myself a few less days :)  I had to set up a few rules for myself though, so I didn't try to cheat.  Here were my rules:

1. The photos would all take place in my studio; same location, same backdrop every day;
2. I would take them at the same time every day, regardless of what I was doing or wearing - I chose 10am;
3. I was free to edit the photos however I chose to;
4. I would spend no more than 5 minutes shooting, and 5 minutes editing each day.

Oooh, I was excited!  I had a project in place that would allow me to practice shooting a bit during the off season, try my hand at some new editing techniques, and I would also work on some posing ideas that I had floating around in my head.  The ultimate goal was that by forcing myself to look at myself on the screen every day for an entire month, I would {hopefully} learn to tolerate, or even LIKE the way I looked in photos.  Really, it was an experiment in self-confidence.  Let's DO THIS!!!

By day 3, I hit a road block, and by day 7, the project was over.

Completely OVER.


(Dramatic pause...)

There were two main reasons I feel this project was a bust.  1 - I felt vain.  The project ultimately didn't suit my personality.  A cop-out?  Maybe.  But during that first week, I actually had a *moment.*  A moment where I felt a strong pull in a completely different direction, which brings me to my next reason that my project was sure to fail.  2 - I stopped wanting to edit or alter my face or body.

Think about that for a sec...

I didn't want to change the way I looked.

I didn't say I liked the way I looked, I said I stopped wanting to change the way I looked.  A small step toward a greater self-acceptance?  Perhaps (remember my New Years Resolution to work on myself?) And that small step excited me very, very much. In that moment, a lot of things changed for me. It was a lightbulb moment. I started asking myself questions (again with the "whys!") and excuse me while I get a little profound here, I think when I decided not to alter the photos of myself, I felt my confidence rise a bit (um, can I get a high five here?!)

The photo that changed everything was one where I almost forgot about my own project.  It was 10am and I had just gotten out of the shower, had a towel on my head, no makeup on and decided to go for it anyway, knowing full well that I had the skills to change anything I didn't like about myself on the screen.  I opened up that photo on my computer and stared at it for a long time.  My brain immediately goes into autopilot mode when I'm adjusting my photos (a little tuck here, more shadow there, even the skin tone, touch up blemishes, etc, etc, etc.) and I sat down to make a few adjustments to myself.

And I couldn't bring myself to do it.

It must have been some sort of mood I was in that day, because I immediately felt dishonest, like I was cheating on myself.  I left that photo alone and tucked it away in a folder.  I continued on for a couple of days past that, but kept coming back to that unedited photo and tried to harness what I was feeling about deciding not to change the way I looked, knowing full well that others may see this photo someday.  Surprisingly, I felt good.  I felt nervous. But I felt good.  It was a combination of confidence, vulnerability, pride and excitement for myself.  Like I had just experienced some type of therapeutic breakthrough that I wanted to share with everyone I knew.  I felt like I was "good enough."  And it led me to ask myself one final question:

Do other women feel this way too?  Was stripping down to a bare face to show the world that you're 'enough' just the way you are, a teeny tiny building block in the foundation of personal self-acceptance?  Would women let me shoot portraits of them, totally makeup free?

Ok, that was three questions, but I really, really, really wanted to find out the answers.

The next day, I put a post on my Facebook page asking for women to take part in a personal project I was working on.  I didn't release any more details than that.  I specifically asked for women around my own age, since I thought they were the most likely to, a) regularly wear makeup, and b) be at a place in their lives where they felt as though they weren't able to take as much time for themselves as they would like to.  No strict rules, just a shot in the dark.

I immediately received about 35-40 inquiries from women, excited to see what I was up to and offering to come over to help me out with whatever I was working on.  When I told them what I was working on, I instantly lost about half.  Several women told me they would rather take their clothes off than their makeup (it was around Valentine's Day, so I think many assumed I was doing boudoir portraits).  A few flat out said, "I don't look good without makeup."  And I almost cried.  By the time April rolled around, I had about 10 still interested, and 6 showed up on shooting day.  Honestly, it's about 5 more than I was expecting :) 

That's what put me on a mission to rock this project.  Us women, we're pretty hard on ourselves, aren't we?  We're never good enough, pretty enough, smart enough, strong enough.  Ridiculous-ness.  When I think about this, it makes me angry, but I get it.  I live it every day.  And now I want to change it.  I can't change anyone else, but I can change myself.  And I choose to be strong and awesome.  Smart and beautiful.  I want other women to feel this way too.  I see all of those traits in every. single. one. of the women below.  They are brave.  And I DARE any one of you to tell me they are not all incredibly, stunningly, awesomely beautiful.

Janine, Emily, Amy, Rachael, Krystal, and Tanya - thank you.  Thank you for showing up and trusting my idea.  Thank you for your conversations and your confidence.  You glow. Check them out below.

Want to get involved?  See below the photos for how you can get in on this goodness.  Come drink my Kool-Aid...... :)

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--

I can't say enough about these six women.  It is my hope that they will spark some discussion about how women view themselves, and how they're more than enough, just the way they are.  To me, these photos stir up a lot of good emotions about the direction we're heading.  I'll drive the train :)

Would you like to join me on this journey?  I'd love to see where we end up.  I'm opening my studio one day each month for the remainder of 2015 to shoot portraits of women, makeup free.  Free of charge to those who are interested in keeping this conversation going.  Get on the email list for full details and scheduling, by emailing me at: info@lyndsaydoyle.ca

Thanks for listening.  I promise the next blog post will be much, much shorter.  Although I should know better than to make promises like that...I have a lot to say :)

Lyndsay 
   

 
Tuesday, April 28, 2015 8:57AM
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Well, almost.

We are the luckiest people in the world, and managed to sneak away for a family vacation to Florida a few weeks ago.  It was amazing.  After the winter we've had here in Nova Scotia, I can honestly say that I've never looked forward to a vacation as much as I did this one.  We've had near record-breaking snowfalls this year (it's STILL snowing as I write this!) and many, many dreary, gray, COLD days. This getaway was very well timed. 

When vacation time rolls around in this house, I usually have my camera gear packed up way before any shorts and sandals - it's just the way it's always been.  Not this time.  I'd love to say that I chose not to bring any camera gear on this vacation because I needed a creative break - a chance to recharge my inspirational batteries (or some other "artistic" crap).  But that's totally not true.  The truth is, there are many reasons why I chose not to bring a proper camera with me.  One: it was bloody hot down there, and I knew that well in advance (thank you, Weather Network!).  I pictured myself dragging my sweaty self through thousands of people at Disneyworld, pushing a stroller with one hand, holding a little hand in my other hand, backpack full of water bottles, hats, snacks etc.. on my back, and a big old camera around my neck?  Um, no thanks!

That's not the only reason though.  Honestly, I wanted to be present.  I wanted to hang with my kids and my family (there were 10 of us there).  I wanted to get in the pool with them, get on every single ride I could, and watch my kiddos through my eyes, not my lens.  Almost everyone in our party had their own camera, and Disneyworld employs their own photographers who do a great job - props to them.  We were more than covered.  I had my iPhone with me, but honestly, I probably only took about 30 photos the whole time.  And you know what?  I'm totally cool with that :)

We had fun.  So much fun.  We unplugged and connected (funny how that happens).

Parents, you do not need to document every. single. moment. in your children's lives.  Sometimes it's best to just sit back and watch.  I'm learning as I go :)

  

 

Kids deserve your attention.  And they happen to LOVE smartphone selfies, that is a fact.  Do it their way once in awhile.

--

Lyndsay Doyle is a family, children's and small business photographer based in the Halifax area of Nova Scotia.  She thinks children are the best travel companions.

 
Friday, February 27, 2015 9:39AM
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I'm so excited to finally let you in on a little secret! 

In an ongoing effort to keep my business as "local" as possible, I'm constantly on the lookout for supplies and products that not only lessen the impact on our environment, but also keep as much business in our community as possible.  As a business owner, it can be quite challenging to balance the desire to offer great products to my clients, while attempting to shop locally, a concept growing near-er and dear-er to my heart everyday.   This year, I'm committing to only offer products that have been sourced and/or crafted locally here in the Halifax area.

Here's the first new product of 2015; hello, Beautiful!  

Archival-quality canvas printed in Halifax, and made from reclaimed wood salvaged right here in St. Margaret's Bay.  All assembled right here in the LDP studio.

These pieces are now available in various sizes, and are sold separately, as an add-on to your photo session.  Insider tip: one is included in the Premium Family Photo Package!

Aren't they great?  They look amazing on the wall.  I LOVE reclaimed wood, and not just because I think it looks awesome, but because it tells a story.  It has a history.  These particular pieces came out of a century home here in St. Margaret's Bay.  I love seeing every knot and every nail hole.  Each piece in one-of-a-kind and unique, bumps and all (just like us).

Thoughts?  Questions?  Your feedback is important to me, so let me have it! My goal is to serve you to the best of my ability, with products and services that you will love forever.  My inbox and comment section is always open :)

Have a great weekend!

Lyndsay

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Lyndsay is a family, children and small business photography based in the Halifax area of beautiful Nova Scotia.  You can contact her at info@lyndsaydoyle.ca with questions, comments and love letters.

 
Friday, January 30, 2015 3:51PM
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Doesn't it always feel kind of nice when January is over?  Although there's all kinds of awesome-ness in this month (*cough* my birthday *cough*), I find it always feels as though we've jumped the cold, dark, winter hurdle and spring is on the horizon.  According to my 7-year old, with Groundhog Day coming up, we'll know for SURE if spring is coming (it's just science), but I don't know, I just kind of feel it, don't you? And it totally makes me happy.

Happy because there's so much to look forward to.  As I alluded to in my previous post, this year will be different for me.  I'm taking more time to think before I act, refine some skills (personal and professional), and to look after myself.  As I figure out what that means for me professionally, I've been trying to come up with ways to use this blog to push my creativity, and to purge some of the ideas that build up inside my brain.  I've got big plans for this year :)

The thing is with me, is that I've never wanted to be like anyone else.  When everyone goes right, I automatically want to go left.  From the outside in, that's a great thing.  But from the inside out, those who are of a similar personality know how difficult it can be, when we're often told to "follow the rules".  I don't really like rules, so I'm going to mix things up a bit around here.  I don't want to have a traditional photographer's blog - I want to be different.

So, you'll start to see a few fun changes to the blog, and to my work as the weeks go on. I'm still going to post lots of photos, because that just makes sense.  I'm going to start incorporating some more writing, which, believe it or not, was my first love, long before photography.  How they come together and how things evolve will be a bit of a mystery, but I'm looking forward to seeing where things go.  Letting my ideas fly freely is part of me taking control over my life and my health.

I want to prove that it's ok to be different, to stand out from the crowd.  Tina Fey says our "personality dust" doesn't start to settle until our thirties, and I completely agree with this.  As I turn 35 and start to figure out who I am and where I'm going, I'd like to invite you to follow along with me as I start pushing my photographic limits, try new things, succeed, fail, and learn.  I'll blog about it all.  I promise I won't sugar coat anything, and I'll try very hard to dish it up with a dose of humour and a lot of kindness (my personal buzz word for 2015)

Are you ready?  I am. 

Let's start with an update on what's been going on around here.

--

JANUARY

January is always what I call "hibernation month" where I try to spend as much time as possible under a blanket, avoiding any real work.  December drains me, and January recharges me.  I purposely put the camera away for awhile and let my brain rest a bit.  By the end of the month, I find myself starting to look for inspiration again.  I watch movies; new ones and old ones.  I read books with vibrant imagery that I try to translate into my own work.  I reconnect with old friends, and open my heart to new ones.  Other people inspire me immensely.  I love listening to their stories and hearing about their triumphs.  I find out where they've traveled and what funny things their children have said to them.  All this inspires me. 

Obviously, this gives me lots of time at home, which I love.  It gives me more time with my family, and my own kiddos become the subject of many of my photographic experiments.  They're pretty cute, so I'm fine with that!    



 

And a little self-portait at the end there :)

Until next time.  xoxo

Lyndsay

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Lyndsay is a photographer based in Halifax, NS area.  She specializes in photographing families, children and small businesses.

 
Monday, January 05, 2015 1:25PM
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Whoa - where did 2014 go?!  CAUTION: LONG POST AHEAD!

The last few months of 2014 were a whirlwind; although that may be a bit of an understatement.  I've had to do something recently that I didn't want to do, and have never actually done before.  It was very difficult, but I had to sit down and do the unthinkable - make some New Year's Resolutions :)  I know, I know.  You're probably thinking "duh, I do that every year," but I never really have, because things have always been...well..nice and easy.  The crazy busy-ness that is my photography business is kinda booming, and I've now got the privelege to make some decisions as to what direction I'd like to head in (that's a good thing!)  I've made 5 New Year's Resolutions for myself.  But I'll get into that in a sec...

2014 was the fifth year for this business (very part time for the first three or so, and now moving into "full time" hours).  If you'd have asked me five years ago where I'd be in this whole photography thing, I wouldn't have had an answer.  Business is a little like a marriage in some ways.  It takes years to really know your partner.  You have to live with them for years to fully understand their inner workings, their habits (both good and bad) and if you're a perfect fit for each other.  I'm pleased to say that this business and I are a perfect fit for each other, and we're going to survive many, many more years together :)

You're going to notice some changes with Lyndsay Doyle Photography going into 2015.  I'm very excited to be able to announce these changes as I roll them out slowly over the next few weeks (Resolution #1 - Slow Down).  You'll notice some new services, namely in regards to offering photographic services to small businesses (Resolution #2 - Focus On My Passion For Helping Other Businesses).  You'll also notice the removal of certain services, like weddings (Resolution #3 - Focus on My Favorite Things, And Do Them Really Well).  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE weddings, and I'm continuing to shoot them - as a second shooter for another photographer (yay!)  However, in order to be the best at what I do, I've had to choose to focus on the things I love most: families, children and business. 

This leads into my next resolution (Resolution #4 - Provide Amazing Customer Service).  This means different things to different people, so I'll try to explain what it means to me.  It means booking less sessions each month so I can concentrate on providing my undivided attention to my clients.  It means being able to answer emails and phone calls in a timely manner.  It means returning your products to you quickly so you can share them with your family and friends while you're still super excited about them!  It means taking time to advance my education and my skills in order to continue to provide top-notch artwork to you.  In 2014, I spent more than 80 hours in the classroom (2 certificates, thank you very much!), and countless hours online, researching and learning in order to get better at my craft.  I will continue to learn in 2015, this is my committment to you.

And the last resolution?  Well, it's all about me (Resolution #5 - Look After Myself).  Again, open for interpretation, but here's the thing.  At the end of 2014, I wasn't feeling great.  A quick trip to my family doctor and a few tests revealed a few surprises about myself that I wasn't expecting.  Don't worry, nothing major.  But the point is that I was neglecting myself and my personal health.  With my 35th birthday right around the corner, I decided it was time to make some changes to my lifestyle (better sleep, better diet, less screen time, more family time...) before I lead myself down a path I don't want to go down.  And if I can figure a way to preach this to everyone I know, and make you all get yourselves healthy in body and in mind, trust me, I will :)  I may need your support along the way on this one!

So there you go.  That's my New Year's blog entry to get you all up to date on what's happening around here.  In summary:  I'm going to be even more awesome this year because I'm finally figuring out my direction in business and in life. I'm going to look after myself better so I can look after you better.  And the reason I do all this?  My kiddos.  Here they are:


Cute huh?  Thanks for listening - you guys rock!  Call me anytime, I'm available for long chats about life, business and family.  I'm available for photography too :)

Wishing you the best in 2015, in your personal lives and in your professional lives too.

Lyndsay

 
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