Doggin Love No. 7 | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

My family has owned dogs almost my whole life.  We had  a little shitzu for a short while, but with allergy problems and high vet bills, she didn’t stay a part of our family for very long.  Then when I was in grade school, we picked up a little red miniature dachshund.  I named her Crissy.  And she became a momma doggin two times over… doxie pups are the cutest too.  We kept Heidi, the prettiest pup, from the second litter.  My parents kept these dachshunds until they passed away.  I loved these dogs and how happy they made me.  But there were two things I never did with them that I wanted to do with a dog:

1. Teach it how to roll over.  Which I accomplished this within the first few months of owning Chase.  She didn’t know how to sit, but she could rollover.
2. Snuggle in bed and wake up with a cute, furry face next to mine.  This also came true.  Unfortunately.

I think they’re both childhood fantasies of owning a dog.  And while I do love to get my snuggles on with a doggin, I hate the fur they leave behind.  I’ve taken the lead of one of my cousins and leave a sheet on top the bed so that it’s easier to take care of the top quilt.  (And it tears up less from dog nails with this sheet too.)  If I could do it all over again, I’d probably never let a dog in my bed, even if it is on top the covers.  Or the couch for that matter.

But… I’ll also admit… I get tickled seeing how the dogs lounge in the bed.

Like how the BDD stretches out the length of our king-size bed in the mornings, and toe-to-toe is end-to-end with the bed.  How Chase curls up on Mike’s pillow at night so she can keep an eye on us until we join her.  She also likes to bite your hand when it’s under the covers, her second favorite game.  And that Chevy – I never thought a deaf dog would want to be alone as much as she does, but she takes frequent cat-naps by herself right smack in the middle of the bed in the middle of the day.  And then I take pictures of her.  Talk about doggin love.

Doggin Love No. 7 | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

Rachel - My doggins have at least learned to not get on the couch or bed unless I say so…that is, while I am around. As soon as we leave for work, they are up on the bed. The evidence is all there – frumpled sheets, dog hair and slober everywhere! They think they are so clever!

Friendly Reminders

It’s amazing how one night out with people who are positive, like-minded and supportive can turn your heart inside out.  Simply amazing.

Once a month I meet up with a group of women for dinner – many of us started as co-workers, but the group has since grown – to just be together and catch up.  We began our dinners out as a book club, but that soon faded… and I’m actually happy it did because we now freely engage in the conversations that we want and do nothing but laugh as we enjoy a meal together.  And I don’t have to read books in a certain time frame, which I find annoying because I’m a slow reader in a world of speed readers.  (For realsies: S-L-O-W.)

But these women… they make me a better me.  Even only a few short hours together last night, even as I sputtered out ideas and word vomit that probably didn’t make any sense as I said it, like a crazy woman selling wooden candy bars on the street corner… they reminded me to smile, be happy and proud, not hide behind that small voice in my head that was saying “what a stupid idea” and “they’ll all judge you.”  I’m feeling even more inspired and motivated than before our dinner last night and I want to hug all their faces this morning for it.

Last night was brilliant.  But I can’t wait to see what we as a group can do to make every day brilliant.

Help Your Being

illustration by Katie Daisy

Susan - Smooches!!!!

Caili - Such true words! Positive people make all the difference, yet sometimes we forget to surround ourselves with nothing but those kinds of people. Love your outlook on life, girl!

Brooke Murphy Photography - […] “book club” girlfriends are a hoot and half.  They’re seriously some of the funniest, fast-witted women I know. […]

Anna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville Children’s Photographer

You know those people.  The ones that have incredibly adorable and happy children?  Enter Amy and Seth who manage to not only have super cute offspring, but when I see them, they’re always smiling and always having fun.  Which then makes me smile and have fun… it’s contagious.  That’s one thing I love most about this family. :)

We had a short and sweet session with just the kiddos, Anna and Clark, last month and I can’t believe how they’ve grown!  Anna is three years old now and has the best imagination.  And Clark is pushing nine months – I can’t get over how chunky he’s gotten since I saw him last!!  But yes.  Amazing kids, amazing parents, amazing family – that’s the best word to describe the Weisenbarger Family.

Anna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville Children

Peaches.  They’re both sweet as peaches.

Anna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville ChildrenAnna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville Children

Cheeky smiles are my fave!

Anna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville ChildrenAnna+Clark {kiddos} | Louisville Children

She’s sweet to the core – love Miss Anna-V!

Amy and Seth, thank you for letting me spend time with your kids over and over again!  It’s hard to believe how much they’ve grown – I remember meeting Anna for the first time when she’s was swaddled and passed around an office to be loved on.  Now she’s a firecracker and I get a kick out of the fact that she wants to play with me.  And Baby Clark, who’s not going to be a baby for much longer, has such a pleasant demeanor and is the best clapper ever. ;)  Can’t wait to photograph you all together later this fall – give those kids high-fives for me!  xoxo


Brooke Murphy Photography is a Louisville Family Photographer and works on-location in Louisville, KY and surrounding areas. To see more of Brooke’s work, visit her portfolio. You can also follow Brooke Murphy Photography on Facebook to see her latest projects, specials and sneak peeks.

Caili - Oh my goodness. That little girl! You did such a great job of capturing her spirit in these. I feel like I’ve met her! Clark is such a cute name and his outfit is to DIE FOR. I want to dress my kids like that one day!

Amy (Mama) - You once again flatter me and my family! Thank you so much for these special images and your kind words!

katie - oh cuties!! that little girl has the best personality and you totally got it! these are so sweet and awesome!

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Earlier this week I talked about the photo-walk my niece, Emily, and I went on down at UofL’s campus.  Not only did I have the intention of walking and taking photos alongside her, but I wanted to photos of her – I love shooting down on campus and what better way to experience it than with my 13-year-old niece.

We found cool places to stop at, I worked her into a pose, asked her about boys (the giggles always come out with talk of boys) and photographed her.  So these are the images I got of her as we went along our photo-walk.

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Things to know about Emily:  She has three siblings; two sisters and a brother.  (They weren’t present unfortunately.)  She’s looking forward to starting the eighth grade and has hopes of joining choir this year.  She loves to craft and is pretty good at crochet – she goes to a weekly meeting at the library to crochet with older ladies.  Emily loves to read and actually wrote a short story last summer.  She and her brother make movies (but are too afraid to post them on the internet).  And after years of thinking they were disgusting, she eats scrambled eggs with delight now.

She is my niece.  And I love everything about her.

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Those long legs – I think she looks so much older in this photo just because I can see her height.  Even my husband was surprised how tall she’d gotten since he saw her last.  It’s crazy.  But good crazy.

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

That smile – I LOVE IT!!

Emily had picked up some new kicks earlier in the week.  I am a fan of Converse myself, so I asked her wear her new mint sneakers.  She had just as much fun photographing her shoes as I did. :)

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

Emily {just because} | Louisville Portrait Photographer

My niece – just as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside.  She did great in front of the camera.  Actually, she did better than I expected, so she shouldn’t be surprised if I ask her to pose for me again.  Now we just have to figure out how to get the rest of the family in front of my camera and pulling it off as well as my Emily did.  :)

I love you, Em.  Never be afraid to be yourself.  Because you’re awesome.  xoxo

Brooke Murphy Photography - […] see the photos I took of Emily on our photo-walk, click here. To see more of Brooke’s work, visit her portfolio. Follow Brooke on Facebook or […]

Diane - lovely pics. Love her legs too. she is beautiful, just like her aunt.

Caili - These are so good! Not only is she the sweetest but the colors and the composition? More of this, please!

Emily - I love posing for you. Anytime!!!! And boy do I look good in black and white. Hahaha!!!

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

My brother has lived in Jasper, Indiana ever since he graduated college and his daughter, Emily, has spent a week with my parents every summer.  This summer, she stayed for twelve days!  I know my mom was very excited about her being around for more than a week, but I was really excited – I would be able to see more of her even though I keep a hectic schedule.  And I love this girl to bits and bits, so spending time with her is a must.

I threw out the idea when she first arrived in Louisville to do a photo-walk.  I don’t think she knew exactly what I meant, but over five days of emails she got the gist.  I picked her on Sunday morning, we headed out for a delicious breakfast of pancakes and then I took her down to my alma mater, the University of Louisville.  I thought the campus would be a great place for a photo-walk because of the scenery (trees, buildings, landscaping, albino squirrels), but I also thought it would be cool to show Emily where her family went to school.  Both my mom and brother graduated from UofL as well, so it was fun to tell her the stories from over the years of visiting campus together when I was younger and my own days as a collegian.

I think the idea went over pretty well.  :)

I armed Emily with my old Rebel XT and gave her two lenses to work with: the 18-55mm kit lens and the fantastic 50mm f/1.8.  We set her camera on aperture mode, we reviewed aperture and what numbers were important, I showed her how to change it on the camera… and then I let her do her thing.

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

Emily went right at it – she was snapping at everything that caught her eye.  So as she took photos, I’d take a shot of the same set up and we’d compare.  We covered the rules of thirds, properly using the focus on the camera and she just soaked it all in.  She was a sponge.  It was awesome just to watch her “get it” as we wielded cameras side by side.

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

I told her that I had plans to photograph her as well.  And I agreed that if she posed for me, I’d pose for her.  So I let her pose for me first, took some photos and showed them to her along the way.  Before I posed for her, I slapped the 50mm on her camera and had her open the aperture.  She definitely fell in love with that little lens – come the first shots she got, she noticed how the background was knocked out and she did a little dance.

She’s nothing like her aunt.

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

Then the experimenting started.  Story telling with a wide aperture.  Admiring flowers.  Looking down a rail.  Finding reflections.  Getting down on the ground.

I’m pretty sure I’ve squat down on the ground like with clients several times.  And I’m glad to know I’m not the only one. ;)

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

She’s a girl after my own heart, in her own world and having fun.  It seems like it was just last year she was a little thing with chubby cheeks and the same long red hair.  I can still hear her tiny four-year-old voice yelling up my parents’ stairs in the morning to wake me up.  “Aunt Book-ah-nay! Come pay wit me!”   And now she’s thirteen.  Starting eight grade and as tall as me.  It’s hard to believe that she’s grown up this much.  And I’m just proud of where she is in her young life.

She makes me happy.  And I love her for that.  Forever and always.

Photo-Walk With My Niece | Louisville Lifestyle Photographer

To see the photos I took of Emily on our photo-walk, click here.

Caili - Oh! This is so FUN! Also, I agree that the 50mm 1.8 is fantastic. For the price, unbeatable!

Emily - Love you too Aunt Brooke!!!

Brooke - Oh Em, I love you more.

Brooke Murphy Photography - […] this week I talked about the photo-walk my niece, Emily, and I went on down at UofL’s campus.  Not only did I have the intention of walking and […]