As we look to 2010, I think more than any other year I can remember, we look towards this year with hope. We look for the return of a safe economy and better schools for our children, the return of funding for the arts and health care for the needy. I for one am filled with hope. I hope for many things. Many of them unnecessary like an old funky Hasselblad 500c or a spankin new 5DMKII. Many of my "hopes" are the same as yours. I hope that furloughs are taken out of schools so my mom who has been a teacher for 25 years can quit the catering job she had to take on weekends this year to cover the mortgage and can go back to being a full time teacher. I hope that kids go back to schools that support arts, physical education, and individual learning. What would all of the artists of today's world, visual or other have done with no access to art in their youth?

I also know that "going back" is never a solution. Going back(wards) is the opposite of progress. Progress is defined in many ways but almost all of the definitions I found used words to describe progress as a "movement forward" or "advancement". So for 2010, I do wish some things to return to the way they were in a sense but I would have to say that my biggest hope would be that we are able to progress as a nation. That our children, our artists, our teachers our citizens don't look for a way back but a way forward to make 2010 and the following years brighter than the years before it. All we can do is look forward because there is really no going back.

By this point I am beginning to feel a bit like one of the Obama campaigners with my "Hope" and "Progress" campaign for 2010. That may not be a bad idea though. Maybe we should put the signs back out on the lawns and the stickers back on our bumpers and remind Mr. President and ourselves that we are still for the "Hope" and "Progress" that we campaigned so hard for in 2008.

..and danced... their heads.

Merry Christmas to all!

After "Genevieve and the Beautiful Mistake" (3 posts back) a friend of mine suggested that I try the double exposure trick again, on purpose this time. My goal was to create something that reflected the Holidays without being too cheesy. So, I set out around my grandparents neighborhood one evening in hopes of photographing some great front yard lights with 2 rolls of Kodak VC 400 speed film and the trusty AE1. I snapped away with the ccchhaaa of the shutter crrrrank of the winder, surely stirring a few creatures (maybe even a mouse) on that quiet evening. Noting every shot on my little notepad, I was hoping to frame it all perfectly. The next day I shot Kate and Chance in the forrest with the hope that the trees around them would look "lit" with christmas lights. I have to say that I got very lucky on a few. My intern even asked, "What tool in photoshop did you use to get all of those red thingies in her hands that look like lights?" Another friend said no one would believe me if I just sent out the photo my intern was talking about so, that one stays on the computer. For all of you skeptics out there, including Charls my intern, here is an example of a shot I would have been really happy with had I turned the camera.

Happy Holidays,

You can see the lights much clearer if you click on the photos to view them larger.

Its late and silent and I am editing images for a client. I keep debating on images without the models face in them because I like them... wondering if the client will too... I keep coming back to this one. It reminds me so much of a page out of " Where The Wild Things Are" that I decided to draw a crown on her and added Maurice Sendak's famous line from the book. Thanks Maurice for a little fun in the middle of a long edit, and thank you Spike Jonze for bringing this childhood favorite back. Now back to reality.. don't think the messy crown drawing is gonna sell this sweater!

On a recent trip to San Francisco I brought only analog cameras and decided to play with a bunch of different film. Using my Canon AE1 I snapped several shots of the city as I wandered about. Upon returning home I still had a couple of rolls of film and decided to bring the AE1 along when I shot the last of the polaroid film with Genevieve. I had what I thought to be a brand new roll of film that I put in the camera just before leaving the city. As above proves, the new roll was one that I had not completely rewound and I reshot the entire roll in a filed of flowers. Lucky for me, the AE1 does not have an automatic rewind nor does it have an LCD where you can see the photos that you have already made. Having known that this roll was already "used" I may never have had the thought to expose it again in a field of flowers. That said, these are some of my favorite photos taken this year. What would we do without the mistakes?

No, this is not a post about designer clothes for dogs. I refuse to buy designer clothes for my dog, but I am not opposed to buying them for myself. Over the past couple of years I have acquired quite a collection. Living in Paris and New York will do that to a girl. Looking for a way to help out animals in need, without turning my home into a dog shelter, I have decided to part with my collected designer clothing and accessories for the sake of paws across America. Twenty to twenty five percent of the final sale price of each item ( each item is different) will benefit the Humane Society of America. Each Week through the Month of December I will list a few new items for sale. This week I have started with a few my favorite designers, Marc Jacobs, Mayle and Nanette Lepore. Please see below for photos and links to ebay items!

Next week I will find a few more treasures for the cause. One of my listed items will go 100% to charity. Please check back for updates. A BIG thank you to my assistant Dallas for being my model and to all of you helping our pawed friends!

Thank You!

For most people the Holidays mean snow covered mountain tops, chilly weather and cuddling under big blankets in front of the fire. Growing up in Hawaii winter had an entirely different meaning. Winter means huge surf, stormy days on the beach, nights around the bon fire, the Christmas tree outside, and lots of rainbows. Although I've lived in several places with snowy winters; I've never had a white christmas and I don't think I'd have it any other way.

Polaroid film and cameras changed photography, eternally... think of the Polaroid 600 camera every family took on vacation to the stunning 8x10 Polaroid images by Paolo Roversi. Although instant film is still available I don't think anything will ever be Polaroid, the colors, the feeling, the smell, all of it. As I say farewell to my last few sheets of 669 it makes me sad that this will be the last of the true Polaroid film I am able to use. I am glad though, that my favorite red head was home from Paris and willing to sit in a field of flowers with me for a few moments to say goodbye in an ooh so dreamy way. Thanks Gen.

Thanks to Lori, Tanya, Dehx (make up artist extraordinare) Maria our LOVELY model, Tommy and the rest of the team working on the new MATIX ads and look book, we had a blast shooting and riding around in the big red bus all over Long Beach. Eventually ending up at the bar HBO uses to shoot their "True Blood" series in was kinda creepy since I had just finished watching the second season on DVR the night before we shot...but, heebie geebies aside, it ended up being a really cool location. Here are a few polaroids of our adventures! And that white leather jacket, yeah its really that cute, really.

Charls, the amazing intern standing on on our light test...

Dallas, the photo assistant and Tesa Love our model...

Tesa, finding time for a text... in her best "cousin it" pose.

...Jess, getting in there for the final touches..

And finally, Tesa, ready for her first shot!

As glamourous as it may seem, with the feathers and the fur, the designers and the models, the make up and the jewelry, being on set, tons of people, crammed into a windowless studio, is always a good time, a little more like a circus than a gala but always fun!

This is something you dont see often, come to think of it, I have never seen this. As we flew north to San Francisco, out my window a United Airlines jet cruised along with us for about an hour. Although the pilot assured that the plane was a good 1,000 feel above us, our friendly neighbor seemed rather close (If I can get a shot with my iphone, come on..).

I think the pilots were having a little race of their own as we pulled in and out of the lead I kept the phone on (airplane mode, of course) and watched the race from seat 44G.

we won in the end :).

For those of you that know me, you know that this is Maxamillion, my black lab. He is quite a bit bigger now (75 lbs and counting!) but still has those puppy eyes that absolutely KILL me! He sits under my desk and sleeps on my toes when I am working on photos or posting new blog entries. He is the best little guy out there. I hope that we all feel this way about our pets.

Dog shelters and pedigree commercials always make me cry so, I have decided to do something about it... but the first thing I need is a few suggestions on animal shelters or charities in the US that do great work for the animals. By this I mean charities that you know of or work with or have adopted from that you believe really do help the animals. If you have any suggestions please leave a comment with information or email me at! I'd love to hear from you! Thanks a million!
Daeja and Max

When asked about her jewelry line, Katrina Cordova says she isn't trying to re invent the wheel, she just makes what she loves. Lucky for me she seems to have perfected the wheel. Last Saturday I had the opportunity to photograph (and take home a piece of my very own!) Katrina's newest Holiday line. With Kate's fire red hair and gleaming green eyes, the two were a match made in my heaven!

The Lucie Awards took place on the other side of the country tonight but thanks to the blog world and A Photo Editor, I got to see the results tonight and I have to say, good choices peeps! A Photo Editor has the full list winners on his blog, but here are the ones I'll look at over and over. Thank you photo world for introducing me to the work of Rachel Papo , the recipient of the International Photographer of the Year, Deeper Perspective Award.

Here are two of my favorites from her website.

And of course the Fashion Layout of the Year – Harper’s Bazaar – Thriller Fashion by Terry Richardson

Does it get any better, or any more fashionable than Michael Jackson? I don't think so.

I have been traveling a lot lately, even for me ( who can't seem to stay in the same place for longer than a month without going a little stir crazy). As I travel from west to east and back I have not only racked up the frequent flier miles but I have become acutely aware of the fact that I am a "window seat-er." I have also learned that I like flying west rather than east especially in the afternoon. From New York to Los Angeles, if taking off at just the right time, you fly right into an almost eternal sunset. Instead of the 15 minutes of glory we get standing on the ground, a window seat at 35,000 feet above the ground speeding through the air at 500 mph headed west gives you hours of changing light and landscape, cloud cover and colors... I have always been inspired by the fleeting. I love things you can only grasp for an instant, like a sunset or a kiss, this is my way of holding onto it for a bit longer, all while moving forward.

In the most recent edition of the KZO Cinematic Journal, I noticed an entry by Glitterati Magazine who did an amazing piece by Joel K, a great friend and the founder of KZO including photos we shot for the fall/winter '09 collection. click HERE to read the entire article about how Joel comes up with his ideas, where he gets inspiration for each collection and how it all comes together!

As I was sitting waiting for a model to finish getting her make up done in a very cool basement converted to studio, I noticed the studio owner, also the make up artist on the job, had all sorts of fun "props" left over from jobs or brought back from her travels. Her studio was a treasure chest. She moved her light to get a better view of the model and the shadow behind the orchids caught my eye. I fired twice and then everyone was ready to go. Loading the photos this one popped out at me and I have been looking at it ever since. My favorite part is the shadow of the peacock feathers on the right side of the frame, you know they are there... but you don't have to see "them."

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