The traveling LENSBABY project | Sandy Fales , Wild Prairie Photography

The traveling LENSBABY project | Sandy Fales , Wild Prairie Photography
DSC_0479What is one thing about your photos that says the most about you as a person. Dig deep!

I think the one thing my photos say about me, as a person, is that I want the people that I meet to be themselves because, for the most part, do the same. I wear my emotions on my sleeve. When I photograph, I want to capture that same feeling from the image. When I am in photographer mode, I am still me. I still talk and interact with others as I would normally do. Only in these moments, I click that shutter to document what emotions unfold. I would hope my photographs would tell the world that I am okay with raw emotion; in whatever form that takes.


Can you tell us a little bit about the process you’ve gone through (or that you are going through) to find your photographic style? How has it evolved over the years?

To be honest, I am not sure what my photographic style is. I know that I like to capture the real moments. I will more often than not cull a photo that another photographer would keep. I don’t like straight on smiling images unless it has another element to it as well. I have to feel a connection in the photo or it goes in the trash. Maybe that is my style. It could technically be a great image, but if I don’t feel something when I look at it, it goes. I think that is why I have never gotten into studio work or artificial lighting. I totally understand and get why those are elements are important in some instances but, for me, I think I would lose something in the process of doing those things. I need to be in the groove for me to love the images I take. I am a minimalist person by nature and I think that carries through to my photographic style.


What Lensbaby lenses have you shot with before? How have they transformed your work?

This was the first time I have shot with a Lensbaby! I thought the lens was wicked cool though I did get frustrated because I am not the best at manual focus. I also like to shoot at a pretty wide open aperture, so that further complicated focusing for me. I think if I owned this lens, and had a chance to work it on a long term basis, I would get the hang of it and would no doubt be in love. The swirl it gives the bokeh is pretty amazing and unique in itself. I would like to try other Lensbaby lens in the near future and see how they could add to the dimension of my images.


Why is it important that photographers not get too fixed in their ways? What makes experimentation so crucial to an artist’s growth?

What’s that old saying? “Don’t knock it ‘till you try it”. For me, change is eternally difficult. I get nervous, I second guess myself, I don’t like it. However, I know that change is a necessary part of growth and exploration. If we never take chances or risks, we will never discover the ‘could have beens’ in our lives. To think that you could never do better is probably the biggest travesty you could serve yourself. You must continually strive to do better, to be better, to break molds, kick ass and take names. That is what makes life an adventure. This is no different for photography. To grow, change must occur; that is a given. Allow it to come in, sit down and stay a while. All the while, you know that this season is not static. So instead of fighting these changes, embrace them. You never know what you might find at the other end. This is how we grow. We allow those changes to happen and we welcome them with grace.


I know that change is a necessary part of growth and exploration. If we never take chances or risks, we will never discover the ‘could have beens’ in our lives.



Hello My name is Sandy Fales, and I am the face behind the camera at Wild Prairie Photography . I am a recent transplant to beautiful Colorado Springs. I love it here. The mountains, the air, the people..everything. It is truly where my heart lays. I moved here from a cattle ranch in Nebraska where I lived for five years. I started my life over and made my new home in a place where I felt welcomed and happy. My journey has not been easy and I am thankful for everyday U have my two sweet babes. Never let yesterday fill up today and always be the change you wish to see in the world are the things i try to live by.

When I’m not getting down in nature, I love chasing my two tiny people around and catching those little moments we have together on film. Photography is in my soul and I hope to be able to share that with you and your family.



BE INSPIRED Session featuring Emmy Lou Virginia

BE INSPIRED Session featuring Emmy Lou Virginia
Tell us a bit about your approach to the work you do, your time in the business and a few personal facts about you.

I love to photograph the intersection of real moments and beauty, and so for the past 4 years I’ve called myself a lifestyle photographer. Somewhere along the way, I realized that my calling lay in capturing families and their stories to save forever. Which sometimes means I photograph a mother holding her newborn and smelling its new baby skin, and sometimes means I photograph a toddler picking their nose. Because real life has real moments like these.

What about this session was most memorable?

I used to focus all of my creative energy on client work, and my personal work was mostly just grabbing my camera to document a moment every couple of weeks. But as I started seeing more of my fellow photographers’ work on instagram, I started envying the beautiful moments they’d captured of their own life. I wanted that. So in 2016, I decided one of my goals would be to be more intentional about capturing personal work I loved. To treat it with the same care I had for client work. At first, it was a challenge, but I grew to love the time I could put into it – generally my only constraints were the
patience level of my toddler (which, admittedly, is low) and/or the hunger tolerance of my husband (also low). (Because why is that pretty sunset light always at dinner time?)
In September, we took a 3-week road trip from our home in Vancouver, Canada, all the way down to Joshua Tree Park. We stayed at Airbnbs or with friends & family along the way, and adventured through the Redwoods, the California coast, Joshua Tree Park, the Sequoias, Yosemite, and the Oregon Coast. We had so many wonderful moments. (Also many not-so-wonderful moments trying to convince our 2.5 year old to stay in his car seat during the long drive. I never want to listen to kids’ music again.) But it was so worth it to see his sheer joy as he ran among  the sand dunes or looked up at the towering trees, and we made so many beautiful memories on this trip – some of which I actually managed to capture!

Your best photographer/session advice?

One thing I’ve been challenging myself to do is to look at the same scene from several different angles. It’s so rewarding to be able to capture three or four different shots just by stepping back or moving closer, changing your position or your perspective. And using backlight and direct light to create different moods!
Another, completely different piece of advice, not actually photography-related, is something we’ve been having fun with on our family trips ever since our little guy was born. Nearly every trip we’ve gone on, we’ve taken small clips of video footage throughout (using my Canon 6D), and created a video montage of our time together. Not only is this a fun creative challenge for me as a photographer and my husband as someone who works in animation, but it’s such an amazing keepsake for us and our son. He absolutely loves to watch these videos, again and again, and it reminds us of all the joy we’ve shared together. You can see the road trip video we put together from this trip : WATCH VIDEO HERE  (Obviously, judging from all the camera shake, we’re far from professionals – but it’s so fun!)

What gear was used to achieve these?
My Canon 6D and my Canon 50mm f1.4, 24-70mm f2.8, and 85mm f1.8 lenses.

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Last, but not least; include a small bio and social media links
I am a Vancouver-based natural light photographer. I’m married to a wonderful man, we have a mischievous little 3-year old, and we live in a tiny white home full of windows and light and love.


BE INSPIRED Session featuring Light Garden Creative


Is this personal work or client work?

A client engagement session with two fabulous people! Laurisa and Eric are getting married in 2017 and opted for a late summer engagement session to kick off the festivities.

What about this session was most memorable?

This beautiful, late summer day. Here in Michigan the weather is unpredictable. Sunny and warm one day, snowing the next! As a natural light photographer this is my biggest challenge. Laurisa and her handsome fiancé Eric had a vision for a dreamy, sunny engagement session… and after rescheduling once due to rain, mother nature gifted us this gorgeous evening! We rejoiced in the sunshine and frolicked around Belle Isle, Detroit for hours! Is this even a job!? Haha!

Were there any hurdles?

The beginning of this session was held inside the Belle Isle Conservatory. I shoot here quite often because it’s basically my favorite place. I challenge myself to use the space differently every time, but still stay true to my brand. I love comparing sessions and finding new depths of my style as I grow stronger as an artist.

Your best photographer/session advice?

I think it’s important to put yourself in your clients shoes. Be sensitive to what this experience is like for them. When was the last time you were photographed? What did it feel like to you? Use your own experience to better soothe the nerves of your clients. Once I let go of my “I’m the photographer” ego and switched my focus entirely to my clients and their needs… my photos transformed! Natural smiles and flattering body language for daysss.

What gear was used to achieve these?

I shot this with my beloved Canon 5D Mark III and a combination of prime lenses – the Canon 35mm 1.4 and the Canon 100mm 2.8 Macro.





Hi! I’m Madison. I’m a fiery Aries, a dreamer, and a hugger. I love tea, plants, yellow anything, hammocks, and music I can dance too! I have an artist’s heart and my beloved camera is my paint brush. I’m passionate about documenting moments that make me feel something, and crafting them into works of art. Garden inspired wall decor for the rustic home – or maybe a modern, cream linen wedding album – swooning!


BE INSPIRED Session Featuring Blushing Red Photography


Is this your personal work or client work?

This session was client work.

What about this session was most memorable?

I would have to say this beautiful child. She was not only one of the most gorgeous little girls i have ever seen, but she was SO happy. Like genuinely happy. She just kept laughing and smiling at me and it made me feel so happy. Also the love that this little family had for one another. The chemistry between mom and dad was REAL.

Were there any hurdles?

YES. My beloved Sigma art 35 decided to stop working in the middle of this session. Right when we were getting really into the swing of the session! Thank goodness I had my second most beloved lens, my Sigma Art 50!

Your best photographer advice/session advice?

I would say just don’t get too caught up on getting the “perfect cookie cutter shot” –  you want to capture the little details that make the clients who they are. Like a mom wiping tears from her overly tired toddlers cheeks, or the joy of a child running around in summer. Even if its not “technically perfect” – real raw moments, those are the moments that the family will cherish forever.

What gear was used to achieve these?

Canon Mark 5d ii and Sigma Art 35 & 50.


About the photographer:

Blushing Red Photography is based in Akron Ohio. I am a natural light lifestyle photographer. I recently quit my nursing career to pursue my passion full time! I have two beautiful boys and an amazing husband who supports me every step of the way! I love creating these real raw moments, and really create a fun easy environment for my clients! I shoot everything from love stories, babies even boudoir! But I specialize in families and women’s portraiture. I also aspire to be a traveling photographer and explore the world doing what I love.

Website. Facebook. Instagram.

BE INSPIRED Session featuring Meysenburg Photography


Is this personal work or client work?

This was kind of both. This mother is a friend who wanted me to do a motherhood session so very much.  We ended up trading artwork her husband painted for this session.  So it really allowed me the freedom I was craving.

What about this session was most memorable?

I think what was most memorable about this session, is how much this mother loves her children!  I had her fill out a questionnaire prior to the session, which is the best preparation I can have as a photographer and with my own process.  Through her answers, I realized that her love is not a one size fits all kind of love.  And she has five children. It would be easy for that to be the case. I realized very quickly her bond with each child was profoundly different from one another. Beautifully so.  And inspirationally so.  That right there was instant inspiration.  I realized I wanted to document her with each child, and for it to be deeply authentic to their own connection.  I absolutely wanted there to be movement. Constant movement to allow for authentic gesture and to allow for true quiet moments of catching their breath and breathing together. There were quiet moments.  There were loud and chaotic moments.  There was endless laughter.  It was a messy, lets do this on your lunch break with all five kiddos and see what we come up with kind of session.  That turned out to be the most meaningful work I’ve ever shot.

Where there any hurdles?

The greatest hurdles were finding the sweetest lighting scenarios quickly and getting five kiddos in order and in the vicinity of the best light possible.  Thank goodness they had plenty of options for good light.  I finally focused on the master bedroom window light.  I asked that their mattress be pushed up next to the window prior to the shoot dressed with white sheets.  I love the connections created throwing pillows on the bed, nursing, and snuggling with mama.

Give us your best photographer/session advice.

For indoor sessions, I like to plan them over the lunch hour.  Anywhere from 11am-2pm.  That gives me the most options for even light.  And I find that even though I’m drawn to the rooms where the sun is touching them the most, the softest light opposite the sun during the middle of the day, creates the most flattering images for my style.  Secondly, and most importantly, I completely relax when I shoot.  Up until the moment I walk in, I may have some anxious energy deciding how I want to shoot and the story I want to tell.  But as soon as I walk in that door, I let it go.  I almost completely go blank in my mind.  And feel the images that are to come.  I’ve already prepped and planned in my mind for days.  Now, I am completely present. No matter what happens, it’s fine.  No matter what doesn’t go as I’ve asked, it’s fine.  Is there a crying baby? It’s fine.  Snuggle up to mama and nurse.  By the way, there was no crying baby.  This one was happy as could be.  Is there a little that wants nothing to do with getting up on the bed, and only wants to throw pillows at the photographer? That’s perfect! 🙂 I won’t push. I just embrace each and every moment like they were meant to be. Truly present. That is my best advice.

What gear was used to achieve these?

I shot with my Nikon D4, 35mm f/1.4 Nikon lens.

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About the photographer:
Hi there, I’m Bethany. Kansas family and wedding photographer. I started my business 12 years ago but I have to say, every year it feels brand new and exciting. Most days you can find me in skinny jeans and a comfy oversized sweater, looking for my cold cup of coffee and doing the mama daily. I am mostly known for being a home body alongside my handsome hubby and two boys. I’m a lover of nature, comfort food, and my boys’ laughter.  I love serving the world by showing mothers they are making a difference in the lives of their tribe. That all of their loving is not in vain. The things I am most passionate about in life are my faith, my family, my work, and waking up slow.

BE INSPIRED Session featuring Becci Ravera Photography


Is this personal work or client work?

This adorable session was technically client work but as with many of the families that I work with if they aren’t already friends they quickly become friends. So, I almost always consider my sessions to be a little bit of personal work mixed with a little bit of client work.

 What about this session was most memorable?

The there is one thing that feeds my soul with this little photography passion of mine and it is seeing the connection between people. I look for it in everything I do. I will forfeit perfect lighting and background for connection and emotion. So as with all of my sessions that was my favorite part of this session. Watching the way this adorable family love each other meant everything to me.

Were there any hurdles?

Anytime you are working with young children there will be hurdles. Kids don’t understand how important these images are to mom and dad. Plus, I tend to hold my summer session right at or after bed time so that adds another element. Honestly though, that is what I love. I want the organic moments between a family even if those organic moments include adorable grumpy faces. One thing to keep in mind when you feel like you are struggling with an unhappy little one is that they are easily distracted and their emotions can easily be reset as long as you are willing to get down to their level and play. For this session, that adorable little girl got a little fussy from the start so I sat the parents down in good light and told the kids to stand next to me and run and hug their parents. They couldn’t wait and what followed was a bunch of honest moments of movement, laughter, and fun. Remember that you control the session even when it seems out of control. Just take a step back, take a breath, and try a different strategy until you find what works.

Tell us your best photographer/session advice.

Through this little photography journey of mine I have found few pieces of advice to be the most powerful.

  1. Learn light- for me this part of the journey is always evolving and growing. I continually try to push my boundaries with light often I fail but when I nail it, it’s magical! Learning to see light differently has changed everything for me. At your sessions always look for light first. If you can set them up in good light and just let them be themselves you will find that you can create some truly spectacular images.
  2. Remember that your subjects feed off of you. If you are uncertain or nervous they will be too. I always try to go into my session prepared. I jot down quick notes on poses or ideas that I want to remember. I try to get to the location about 30 mins early to confirm exactly what light and backgrounds I want to use. If you are still learning your session flow start following photographers who’s images you love and study how they do things. Where is the light they are using? How are their subjects posed or unposed? Don’t copy them simply learn from them and then implement your style.
  3. If I can leave you only one piece of advice this would be it… Be yourself! Your passion for photography means that you have something special to share. Shoot what you love, learn that there are never mistakes only chances to learn and grow, keep trusting yourself and pushing yourself even when you aren’t sure if you can, I promise you that you can. And the sooner you learn that the only acceptance that you need is your own the easier this journey will be.

What gear was used to achieve these?

I am a canon girl and I am a huge fan of the 6D. I learned on that camera so I love it. This session I relied most on my Sigma Art 35 1.4 (a favorite of mine) and my Canon 70-200L. I usually only rely on natural light and will climb on and over just about anything to get the light I want.


About the photographer:

I am a Cali girl currently living and exploring the beauty of Northern CA with my best friend of the last 15 years and our 2 little monkeys (J is 4 & D is 2). You will rarely find me without my camera in hand because I am mildly obsessed (ok – totally obsessed) with capturing the beauty of the everyday moments in a fun and creative way. As a boymom, I have learned to embrace the messiness and just try to enjoy the beautiful chaos that fills my days.

WebsiteFacebookInstagram. Pinterest.

BE INSPIRED Session featuring Danielle Meredith Photography


Is this personal work or client work?

I think all of my work is personal work to an extent. I go into every session to get the best photos for the couple but also pushing myself to do something different and find their connection.

Tell us about this session. What about this session was most memorable?

The shoot was at my in-law’s place in Carnarvon, Ontario. Yeah… we live in a pretty killer spot. Britt, Josh and I hopped into a canoe and a paddleboat. I was in the paddleboat completely forgetting how slow those things are so there were a few times where I had to yell, “Wait up guys!” like the little sister of the group. I have known these two for a long time and they’re super laid back and sweet. We wanted to do something by the water where they could be barefoot and have some quite moments together in nature. I am always trying to find the personal side of the couple so that their photos make sense to them. Their boho style wedding is coming up in September and I am so stoked!

Were there any hurdles?

Not that I can remember… maybe a few trips and slips along those rocks I had them climbing all over. Overall, it was great!

Your best photographer/session advice?

Use your personality to shoot. If you are silly and loud, then be silly and loud and bring that out in the couple but if you are calm and serene then be chill and find the quiet moments. For me, it depends on the day what you are going to get but I would say I am normally silly and loud-er 😉

What gear was used to achieve these?

I use a Canon 5D Mark iii and my lens of choice is my Canon 35mm

My spots:


About the photographer:

10 years ago, I went to college for photography but they focused more on studio work than outdoors and moments so I quit and went to school for advertising and design. I was always the person at social events taking pictures in the following years leading up until about 2 years ago after our wedding when I decided to go full time. During our wedding, we were surrounded by so much love and happiness. It was truly the best day and my wedding photographer, Jennifer Moher, inspired me to get back into photography because I wanted to capture these same emotions and memories for other people. Being a wedding photographer has changed my life. Every wedding I am at I meet so many amazing people and when I deliver the photos for my couples to relive I am filled with so much love. In the last 2 years, I have grown more as a person than at any other point in life. On top of that, we are expecting a little human in the next few months so life will get even cooler. It’s been a great journey so far and I can’t wait to see where photography will take me next.