School days!

Yesterday I had the great fun (although I was nervous beforehand!) of talking to the eighth grade art classes at OCCS about photography. It was so much fun to see them absorb the information and then go and apply what they learned during the hands-on picture taking! This is the second section…ran out of time the first session for a group shot.

If there is any OCCS eighth grader who stumbles across my blog, I will award a bag of licorice to the first one who leaves a comment on this blog post that contains all of the seven “rules for taking good pictures” we talked about!

Anonymous - April 25, 2009 - 8:34 pm

Hey Vanessa,
Thank-you soo much for taking my pictures to day! Um…..i can’t remember all the rules but i just thought i would comment on it anyway. It was alot of fun to have you come in to our class. Thank you!
Autumn Pluim

Happy Monday morning to you!

I am thankful for a new week. I met with a few women for book discussion this morning, and through our study of a good book was encouraged to start off the new week trying with God’s help to be more gracious, selfless, faithful and patient. Sometimes it’s easy to get discouraged by the long ways I have to go. I’m so thankful for the patience shown to me in this regard…. ๐Ÿ™‚

I am excited to share a few favorites from a recent engagement session with you this morning.

Emily and Benj were in town visiting from the Twin Cities area of MN, and wanted to get some engagement portraits made. While it was a pretty nice day with no wind, it was still only 26 degrees outside so we started off inside for a few.

I went to Benj and Emily’s website, and noticed that they are requesting no gifts for their wedding, but only donations to Heifer International. Love that idea.

We did brave the elements for a few minutes to get some outside shots.

Benj proposed to Emily in a barn at an apple orchard…not THIS barn, but still a fun photo op!

Benj and Emily-thanks for the fun shoot…I look forward to your wedding in a couple of months!

Jessica Kok - February 9, 2009 - 7:03 pm

fun, fun, fun.

i got the gift card. thank you!

Anonymous - February 9, 2009 - 8:16 pm

Hi, I’ve never posted a comment before, but I’ve been following your blog for a while now after stumbling upon it months ago and being totally captivated by your work! I think your pictures are just amazing, and I wished I lived in your neck of the woods — I’d try to book you even if I had to wait ages for an opening!

But at the moment, I’m so curious about the little set of stairs in this set of pictures — the one where he’s standing and she’s sitting. Are we not seeing the whole flight, or is that in fact the smallest/narrowest set of stairs in the world??

–“admirous” and curious ๐Ÿ™‚

Vanessa Bartels - February 11, 2009 - 8:58 pm

Wow! Thanks for the very kind words! ๐Ÿ™‚

The shot you ask about was taken right inside the entrance of a local building. The couple is on the landing and it’s kind of split level. When you enter, you go up to the middle level using the stairs on the right, or down to the lowest level if you go to the left…down a similar flight of stairs (that you can’t see) behind Benj.

Thanks for stopping by…come again!


…to Joe and Gina from Joe’s Appliance in Orange City as they have recently moved into their new building! If you are in Northwest Iowa and in need of a TV, washer dryer, fridge, stove, or any appliance, be sure to check them out. I am excited for this new chapter in your business and wish you all the best!

Anita Nykamp - February 26, 2009 - 8:47 pm

Joe & Gina – great picture!

What would we do in a world…

…without music?

This is Clayton. He plays electric guitar…

…and string bass.

Hope you enjoy my favorites from this session with this cool 8th grader!

The first person who leaves a comment on this blog post will receive a $15 gift card to iTunes. in addition to your comment, please email me at info @ vanessabartelsphoto . com with your mailing address!

Jessica Kok - January 31, 2009 - 6:17 pm

He looks way more mature than 8th grade! Love the lighting.

robin - January 31, 2009 - 8:58 pm

Wonderful images. I love the one with the bass.

Vanessa - January 31, 2009 - 9:58 pm

Congrats Jess! Gift card is on the way!

Jessica Kok - January 31, 2009 - 10:45 pm

I knew my RSS feed would come in handy! ๐Ÿ™‚

Abby - February 2, 2009 - 12:44 am

very cool!!
i love the second shot ๐Ÿ™‚

Tony - February 3, 2009 - 4:58 am

Wow all the shot are great. lighting:stunning. window lighting is the best huh?

Tim and Sara’s family…

…has been celebrating their new arrival!

Here is a close up look at sweet little Sarae! (Pronounced saRAY)

Her siblings can’t get enough of her!

Big brother Zach…

Big brother Reese…

…and big sister BreElle. LOVE all of those brown eyes…mmmm!

Two sisters….BreElle is SUCH a little Mommy to her baby sister!

The brothers….doing what brothers do!

The happy family!

robin - January 30, 2009 - 10:19 pm

What a beautiful family! She is a darling little baby. I love the picture of the big sibs all looking down at her. Lovely!

Megan - January 31, 2009 - 6:22 pm

The one of the siblings all looking down at her and the close up of her right before it are such amazing and beautiful photos!

sara Van Zee - February 3, 2009 - 3:44 am

We had so much fun! Thank you.

Patty De Kock - February 6, 2009 - 1:15 am

Vanessa, These are great you did a wonderful job with the kids. Sarae really looks like herself. I love them. I can’t wait for Sara to get the rest.

JulieM - February 6, 2009 - 9:26 pm

I love checking in on your week! It is always beautiful!