The Art of Photography Delight Intensive in Chelan, Washington

I woke up so excited and nervous and joyful that I didn’t even mind how early it was. And while we had planned for this day for months, it still felt so very surreal to look out the window over the wing of an airplane down at endless snow covered mountains as far as the eye could see. I had never been to Washington before, but I had thought about it so often and for so long that in some ways, it felt a bit like coming home.

Even though I was continually told that this weather was not the norm, central Washington was exactly what I imagined it to be in the winter - piles of snow on the ground and endless white mountains surrounding you in every direction. The drive from Wenatchee to Pateros was perfect… and even thought I made the trip 6 times in 6 days, I never got sick of it. 

I arrived in Washington on Wednesday afternoon, and the Art of Photography workshop began one day later with a delicious welcome dinner cooked by Michelle, an amazing woman who constantly served us and made us feel so loved during our time together.  That night, we sat around the fireplace and snuggled under blankets as we worshiped God and talked about how and why we got into photography. And then just about life and Jesus and everything in between.

The next morning, we officially began to dig into the content of the weekend. Gabrielle taught the basics of shooting in manual mode, and I gave a general overview of the art of photography - the elements of art, principals of design, and general rules of composition. Then, we took a break from learning to photograph a beautiful baby girl and her family. After lunch, we headed outside for some practical posing tips and practice photographing a couple and a family, then we warmed back up inside as we talked about blogging and post production. That night, I shared my testimony and talked a bit about how easy it is for your job to become an idol and how to bring glory to God through photography. Then we just did life together. We talked about the beautiful things, the hard things, and the real things that people deal with every day and usually keep hidden inside. And ya'll, that's my absolute favorite part about Delight. I love how it's a place that encourages you to be real and raw and to live in deep, beautiful community. How, yes, it's about pursing the creative arts, but it's also about so. much. more. It's about loving Jesus through the good times and the bad, and about bringing beauty from ashes. It's such a wonderful, beautiful thing.

Saturday morning, we woke up, ate breakfast, and Gabrielle taught an incredibly comprehensive and informative course on weddings - from booking your first bride to shooting the wedding and everything in-between. Then, I talked about consistently branding your business in a way that sets you apart form everyone else. That afternoon, we photographed the beautiful Ellie in her dance attire, a few senior sessions, and took each other's head shots. We also talked about workflow, money, and how to run an effective business. Gabrielle gave her testimony, and again, we stayed up way too late talking about life and woke up super tired in the morning... but a good kind of tired that means you used your time well.

We were supposed to leave bright and early Sunday morning, but after the 90 minute drive to the airport and sitting in the terminal for about an hour, our flight was cancelled. So we headed back to the Delight house for a bonus day... which mostly consisted of naps, watching movies, and generally doing life together. We were all ready to be home, but it ended up being a really sweet time together, and I wouldn't trade that extra snow day for anything. 

I loved sharing everything I know about photography and art and weddings with these ladies and empowering them to run beautiful, successful businesses, but honestly? My favorite part about the Art of Photography Intensive was the sense of community that was built during our time together. I loved watching how a group of girls from all over the country with vastly different personalities and interests and skills can come together... simply because of a shared interest in photography and a love for Jesus. It never fails to amaze me how Jesus is bigger than our differences, and how much of a family the body of Christ truly is.

It's a beautiful thing, and I feel so blessed and overwhelmed and thankful to be a part of it.