Archive for 'Personal'

June 20

Tonight I wanted to write something kind of special that is near and dear to my heart.  For those who don’t know me well, I was very close to my dad.  As a matter of fact, from the age of 11, my dad raised me as a single parent. A lot of my upbringing has been mainly unconventional, but regardless of my unconventional upbringing, I was daddy’s girl.  It’s been sixteen years, since my dad passed away, but I still carry so many great memories of him.  He taught me how to fish.  He encouraged me to play sports. He wanted me to travel and see the world. He even gave me my first camera.  It wasn’t until after I graduated that my dad and I were beginning to be friends.  Unfortunately, due to his declining health, our friendship was very short lived.  Looking back, my dad tried his best to stay connected with me, spend time with me, and, at times, really try to hear me  when most of the time, as an angry teenager, I would try to push him away.  He was persistent. icon smile //FATHERS DAY//

I’m really, truly grateful for having grown up with a father who was present for me.  I know it wasn’t easy to raise a child on his own, let alone a girl, and I know he did the best with what he had.  Lucky for him, I wasn’t as big of a jerk as I claimed to have been to him. But because of my dad, I really did have a solid understanding of what it means to unconditionally love someone, and, because of him, I learned to be empathetic towards others.

People have asked who is Emery in regards to the name of my business.  Emery is my dad.  I love being a photographer and I love my dad.  When I first started my business in 2006, I knew I wanted to honor him and be a representation of him.  They best way I knew how was carrying his name with me.  In my eyes, my dad represented Love. I have a great deal of love for my work.  I have a great deal of love for the people I meet and photograph.  I know that my photographs are for the love my clients have for those who are near and dear to their hearts.  It’s an honor to have my dad’s name be the headline of my business and it’s an honor to photograph the amazing and courageous people I meet, and I don’t regret for keeping the name as my business has transitioned over the years.

There are times I dreadfully miss him. However, I learned recently that he’s been with me this whole time.  He’s never actually left.  Knowing that, my heart feels full again….not that it’s really ever empty but it’s that feeling of wishing he was here that I realize he really is here.  I know my dad is proud of me and I know, as he has always done, love me unconditionally.

From my dad and I to all of you who are still Daddy’s girl …. and Daddy’s boy, Happy Father’s Day!



Emery & Co. Photography

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April 27

Mothers have a magical touch.  Nothing is more powerful, healing or calming than the unconditional love that comes from our mothers.  Whether you know everything about your mother or not, there are sacrifices you aren’t aware of that your mother has done for you to have a better life – and she isn’t willing to stop anytime soon.  Your mother is special to you.  No one else will understand the exact importance your mother is to you but hopefully share the same feelings towards their own mother.  This Mother’s Day give your mother a gift that is truly timeless…a captured moment of her beauty.  4814 Grand Rapids Beauty Photography 106 This Is For Our Moms 4814 Grand Rapids Beauty Photography 101 This Is For Our Moms

Our mother’s beauty radiates from the inner depth of her heart and soul.  Her beauty should not just be shown through her love for her family but also for herself.  This mother’s day treat your mother to a beauty session.  1414Brown 107 This Is For Our Moms1414Brown 120 This Is For Our Moms

She deserves to be pampered by having her hair and make up professionally done to shine for the camera.  It is a wonderful sentiment to feel extra special for a day, while capturing those moments on camera that allow the day to last forever.  The added bonus is that the beauty your mother felt that day will be because of you – something she will never forget.

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There is also the option of doing a session together – a mother-daughter duo – can expand the experience to greater heights.  Just the gesture alone to your mother will mean more to her than you can image.  Her happiness alone will make your heart feel her magic.  True happiness is seeing our mothers smile.  4415AKDT 101 This Is For Our Moms 4415AKDT 121 This Is For Our Moms

We are our parents’ greatest gifts in their lives.  They are beyond deserving of the world, so show your mother how they mean the world to you by gifting them something that will show the world the best version of themselves – a beautiful picture, of a beautiful woman, to shine to the end of time.

Remember your mothers on May 10th!  Show her how much you care!  Book her appointment today.

April 13

The winter blues are hopefully behind us with spring here.  That’s right, spring has sprung!  Celebrating the blossoming of Mother Nature’s beauty is all around us.  Why not take a little inspiration from Mother Nature herself and do a little spring rejuvenation to ourselves.   Lets release our skin from underneath those wintering dry dead flakey layers!  Your face is ready to greet the sunshine again after a nice do at home super easy and fun face mask

To pay our greatest tribute to our city, which has been pegged, ‘Beer City USA’, lets take something that is of plenty and use it to make our skin shine.  Yes, you guessed it, the main ingredient in this do it yourself facemask is beer.  It isn’t just for the boys anymore and not just for drinking.  Beer can be used for multiple purposes, but today I am sharing with you how it can make your face glow!

Balancing the Hulk

The hulk or should I say, Bruce Banner walks the fine line of not getting too angry, and I hope you don’t allow your skin too either.  Ideally you want your skin to be happily radiating to keep the anger at bay.  With the ironically named Balancing the Hulk facemask, you too can keep your skin’s moisture balanced, with clear tight pores and filled with antioxidants!  Oh and not to mention, you will look like the Hulk from the green pigment in the spirulina (but only when you have the mask on-it does not dye your skin).

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-1/2 tsp spirulina powder

-1 ripe mashed banana

-splash of fresh lemon juice

Spirulina is great for the whole body (you can ingest it too)- it has more antioxidants than blueberries.  It can help lesson the effects of sun damage, while reducing the appearance of fine lines.

For the mask, mash the banana, add the spirulina, lemon juice and apply to the face.  Keep on for 10-15min.  So simple.  Your skin will thank you!

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This next face mask takes us back a few years to the Aztecs and is known as the “World’s Most Powerful Facial”!  It is simply two ingredients.

Pulsating Puddy

Equal parts:

-100% Natural Calcium Bentonite Clay

-Apple Cider Vinegar41015 107 //DIY// Facemasks

Mix ingredients together in a non-metal bowl to form a smooth paste.  Apply 1/4in to 1/2in to the face.

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The awesomeness of this facial is that you will feel your face tingle or pulsate as the clay dries.  Leave on the skin anywhere from 10-20min.  Remove with warm water.

**This is one of the more difficult masks I have done to get off.  Just be patient with it.  The clay will come off as it softens back up from the warm water.**

If your face is a little red this is normal from the pulsating invigorating feeling you felt while the mask was working its magic on your face.

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Whether you want to explore the route of the Hulk, feel pulsating sensations and/or get your face ‘drunk’, your face will sure be thankful for the time you took to keep your face bright fresh and shedding away that winter layer!




February 14

12913 122 Gauge Your Self Love:  6 Questions To Ask YourselfThroughout all the moments, creations, accomplishments in life, these are only pieces to life’s puzzle; or seasons to your ultimate collection-You!

 If this question goes unanswered, it can affect your life, even small moments in your daily living.  Not being self-aware will trickle…

into negative energy radiating off your body broadcasting to the world, 

unconscious living,

possibly what you are inviting into your life without full awareness, and

what others are feeling towards you.

It is your duty to live true to yourself!  To learn to love what you have, to create to love and love to create.  If you do not love yourself, how do you expect to fully be able to love someone else?  Issues will always arise even if you may be blinded by the love for someone else in current moments.  There will also be an emptiness in which you will try to fill…searching, yearning, seeking…endlessly not seeming to go anywhere.

I ask you to subtly pay more attention to yourself.  When you wake in the morning, be present in the morning and honor yourself.  Set your intention for what you want to accomplish for yourself that day-regardless of everything else you HAVE to do.  Create time and space to honor yourself each and every day.  Ask yourself important questions:

Do you love yourself enough to:

Forgive yourself and others?

When your level of forgiveness comes into question, then your level of respect is in question as well.  If there isn’t a certain standard set, everything is a loose cannon.  Knowing what you are willing to forgive and not forgive is respecting yourself in what you are willing to tolerate, which is the level of love your have for yourself and those in your life.

Improve your body’s current condition with exercise and nourishment this world of ours gives us as energy?

If you don’t love your body you are willing to feed it processed, lack of nutrient food while cruising through life on the couch.  If you love yourself, you feel the respect your body deserves by making its physicality the best it can be to support you through life.

Follow your heart and honor your soul?

We can always gain knowledge and expand our minds, but our heart always leads up to where it wants to be happy.  Respecting yourself means respecting your heart.  Living in the present moments shows true value in the fact you want to listen to yourself and see where your heart and soul are most loved.

Expand your wealth and knowledge your brain thirsts for?

Do you spend time learning or do you wander aimlessly through life feeling slaved to others?  Some of us feel that we are happiest when we are helping others.  I am not saying that isn’t true but there is still a certain level of respect you must have for yourself to be able to help others the best you can.  Challenging yourself through expanding your mind can help keep you tip top and know a little more information each day that may be valuable to help others around you.

Be vulnerable and completely open to others and life?

To be vulnerable and open is to have trust.  If you don’t love yourself, then you don’t trust yourself and if you don’t trust yourself then you can’t trust others.  Let this soak in and evaluate your level of vulnerability to the world and those most important to you.

Reading this may seem pretty scary to some of you, but the good news is that is the first step to loving yourself.  Realizing and becoming aware of things in which you need to work on to be the best version of yourself-your ultimate collection, is like opening the floodgate to self-love.  Yes there will be moments when you feel extremely overwhelmed, but peace and beauty will come from it-this I can promise you.  It may not be as soon as you’d like, but if you are open to loving yourself it will be.  The love for yourself will arise; others around you will notice it too.

Questions that used to bother you will no longer seem important…things will seem to just fall in place with less worry, anxiety and stress.  You must love yourself to love the world around you.  How will you love yourself today?


March 06

So it’s 8 degrees outside today.  The sun is out but it’s cold as hell outside.  I’m laying here in bed with an old, affectionately needy cat and a sinus infection writing this.  It’s now been a few weeks as a full time photographer and I have so many mixed emotions  about living the dream and reality of working from home becoming Grand Rapids Premier Boudoir and Beauty Photographer.  It’s a dream come true because  up into this point  it’s everything I’ve ever wanted, and the universe, in it’s mysterious and comical way, gave it to me.  I have no regrets about my decision and journey to get to this new and exciting position.  I teeter-totter from being overly anxious and overly excited and each day  I serve myself a cocktail of these high end emotions.  However, at the end of the day, I am  grateful and blessed that my husband believes in me and supports my decision even though, I maybe serving him the same cocktail, and that crazy mess is served shaken.  But I am also grateful that I finally have a this opportunity to really live my dream as I know deep in my soul that I have intended to.

My wish and ask is that the universe doesn’t beat me and my husband too badly while going to the next chapter.  I understand life happens but please, please, please don’t let life act like a crazy bitch and key up my vehicles or leave me battered and broken….well at least not yet.  I need more endurance to handle that kind of beating.

But to be more simple I am grateful and I am happy.


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May 10

Often as a photographer, it’s easy to forget to shoot for yourself or make little projects for yourself that reignite the heart, but it’s so important.  As a matter of fact, it’s vital in order to continue as an artist to find ways to be inspired.   I can’t tell you how many times I’ve talked so openly about my ideas and never followed through.  Then those ideas sit in a catalog in the back of my brain categorized as Maybe, Someday, and Scratch.  Well this time, I finally got of my lazy butt and went for it.  And I have to say, I couldn’t feel more satisfied with myself.

Remember the fictional character, Ophelia, from William Shakespeare’s Hamlet?  I’ve always been inspired by paintings, drawings, and other photographs that were inspired by the same character.  The image is generally serene, feminine, and ethereal sometimes dark, even.  I wanted to have a small group of work that resembled that kind of beauty and emotion.  Well, I shamelessly and proudly used my niece for such occasion.  It sort of came to me on a whim. Since she was already in town for a few days, we whipped up the set the night before she had to head back to school.

I have to say, when I look back at these impromptu images, I proudly punch my fist in the air for following through with one of my silly ideas and I want to kiss my niece’s facefor being such a beautiful and delightful spirit.  Thank you Miss A. for being my muse!  I love you!!

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If there is one thing I’ve learned to love, that’s falling in love with long, voluptuous, sexy and sometimes, drag queen eyelashes.  That courtship began when a dear friend of mine from Artistic Enhancements bound those fantastic things to my eyeballs.  Not only does having long lashes look great in photos, but people notice and you get great compliments for looking pretty.  And who doesn’t love getting compliments for looking pretty? What I love about having eyelash extensions is that it’s low maintenance beauty.  Sure, you have to keep up with them in that you will have to refill them once or twice a month, which is no different than keeping up with your manicure.  What I mean is, you don’ have to put on a lot of makeup, or even wear any at all, and it looks like you just rolled yourself right out of bed looking amazing.

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I have worked with Tara and Alexis at Artistic Enhancements over the years  and they are both skilled and talented ladies when it comes to eyelashes, airbrushing, and other aesthetics.  They will be displaying a booth at this year’s Women’s Expo at the Devos Place this month from the 8th-10th.  Be sure to come down and say hi!  And be sure to also Like them on Facebook. 

ba sr 2013 //VENDOR LOVE// Artistic Enhancements

February 04

I love the sparkly, exotic things in life especially when I’m on my way to my favorite shopping places.  I dream of the day of owning my own studio and if I had it my way this is what I would be furnished with!

Photo Safari 2013 //EYE CANDY// Safaris with my Camera

January 19

It’s been awhile since I last wrote on this blog.  As matter of fact, unless I check my archives, I can’t remember when I wrote last.  So why today?  Why now?  Well, simply, I have some things to say.  The past few years of my business have been an eye opening and even more, a heart opening experience.  I have been able to go places, see beautiful things, and meet beautiful people. Within that time, I have had many moments of self reflection, especially this past year.  For the past 6 years I have been a wedding and portrait photographer and I have learned a lot from this business.  I’ve had a chance to connect with many of my clients on a deep level and even better, reconnect with people I have not seen in years.  It’s amazing how time flies and how the years just past by in a blink.  During my times of self reflection, I have come to a hard truth and have been scared to admit for sometime, but I’ve built up the courage to say out loud that I will not photograph weddings for my business anymore.  It’s not that I don’t like them and I certainly don’t hate them.  I just don’t feel as passionately about weddings as most of my colleagues are and their images are proof of their enthusiasm.  I enjoy shooting weddings but I prefer a more sidekick approach which is second shooting for other photographers, in which I will continue to do so.

With all that being said, I am still photographing.  My camera is not sitting down.  As a matter of fact, I am very excited and happy to announce that I will be photographing boudoir and glamour photography.  What does this mean?  It means I will dedicate my business and life to making beautiful images of everyday women and helping them appreciate a little bit more of who they are and what they do.  My heart just swells just typing that out.  I have always been inspired with people in general, and I’ve always wanted to connect with them more on a deep and profound level.  At the same time, I am fighting for women on their definition of what beautiful is.  I will always disagree with women who badger themselves in how bad they look and only encourage how wonderful they are.  Confidence, encouragement, appreciation, acceptance, friendliness, respect, kindness, and authenticity are the core ingredients of what beautiful is.  I want to photograph any and every woman who can understand and relate with me on the kind of beauty that I speak of.  Photographing them is the best way I can express that.

Glamour sessions are beauty sessions for women who prefer an option without wearing sexy lingerie.  Boudoir is more edgy and has a more sexy, risque appeal, but it’s also quite a bold act to make for yourself.  That’s why I love what the genre stands for.  Why not seize the moment and embrace yourself as  you are right now?  Be brave!  Be courageous!   The truth is it’s scary to put yourself out there and see yourself in such a bold way.  One day you’re going to look back and see those crazy, sexy, gorgeous pictures of yourself and say, “Wow, I was one sexy B****!!”

For more information on my Boudoir and Glamour sessions or just go for it and book a session, please email me,  I would be happy to go over the details about my sessions.

To all of my clients, friends, and family, thank you for supporting me and being a part of my journey.   I hope you understand my decision and that you continue to stay by my side as I continue to do big awesome things for my little business.



July 19

My dear friend’s son turned 1 year old back in June, so they invited some friends and family to join the party.  I love cute messy faces.