Molto Carina » philadelphia wedding and portrait photography

Masthead header

Dancing Lauren Portraits

The first time I saw Lauren dance was entirely by happy-accident.  My friend took me to a workshop performance to see some dancers she knew, and after her friends’ performance the lights came back up…and there was my neighbor Lauren in the middle of the floor!  She performed a solo piece she’d been working on, and I was so impressed by her ability to move and create shapes and communicate a story with her whole body.  I am NOT a dancer, so I have huge respect for people who can bend and flex and twirl in beautiful ways.  I wanted to photograph Lauren because I love to collaborate with other artists, and I’ve been dying to photograph dancers lately!  So she came over for a quick visit a little while ago, and this is what we came up with.

philadelphia dancer portraits lauren

philly dancer portrait lauren

philly dancer portrait lauren

to the top§share on facebook§follow on twitter§talk to me§subscribe

Happy 6th Anniversary to Us!

It was six years ago today.  We were hanging out at my house in South Philly when Steve very, very carefully examined my newly painted nails so he had an excuse to hold my hand.  That’s a real slick move, fellas, so take note.  Our first date was walking up Passyunk Ave, which at the time was still largely occupied by upholsterers, neighborhood hardware stores, and other little hole-in-the-wall shops with hand painted signs.   We stopped in the used record store (Beautiful World Syndicate) and I think he might have purchased a Beastie Boys CD…

first date record store

But we had plenty of other NOT-dates before that.  We were inseparable from the night we first met outside our dorm freshman year.  We basically had two years worth of not-dates before the nail incident on January 11, 2007.  Our most memorable not-a-date was when we saw Radiohead play two nights at the Tower Theatre.

before philly radiohead show

south philly cheers

south philly self portrait

But finally we both realized that all these not-dates had so much more potential.  We could face life together, go on adventures during the day and snuggle close at night.  I could cook dinner while he washed the dishes.  And with a little practice running for the trolley, we could win the million dollars on The Amazing Race…because where I end, he begins.  And that’s why we make the best team in the world.

temple university graduation self portrait

eastern state penn self portrait

halloween mask portrait

washington dc botanical garden portrait

vancouver portrait

portland salvage portrait

My favorite date yet in Cahuita National Park in Costa Rica…

cahuita costa rica palm portrait

nyc skyline portrait

boston self portrait

Happy Anniversary, Boo!  I love you. I love us together.  I love our adventures.  And in this race around the world, we’re in first place.


to the top§share on facebook§follow on twitter§talk to me§subscribe

Boston With Gloves On

My hometown hairdresser once told me that she flew all the way to Florida (from NJ) for the weekend to see Metallica play a concert.  She was a bit of a superfan.  Maybe even a groupie.  I never thought to ask.  Anyway, I was pretty young at the time, so the thought of a weekend concert vacation seemed insane to me.  That is until the first time I took the bus from Philly to Boston to see Wilco one late-October weekend in 2004.  And that other time I went to DC just to see Four Tet.  I haven’t flown anywhere for a show yet, but if I have to fly to Poland (or Germany or Denmark) to see Leszek Mozdzer play a concert then that’s just what I’ll have to do.

This is all leading somewhere, I promise.  It’s leading to Boston.  Last week/end.  Steve and I took a little trip to visit his brother…and because we had Louis CK tickets at the Boston Symphony Orchestra.  We took an overnight bus and arrived around 7am to a paralyzingly frigid 6 degree morning.  It was then that I realized I have NEVER been to Boston in the nice weather!  Why do I do this to myself??  The hat hair alone kills me!  So I had to wear two pairs of gloves the whole trip (one pair that converts to mittens), and my aspirations of endless travel photography quickly…well…froze.  Can’t wait for our trip this spring!

boston sunset from inside

louis ck at the boston symphony orchestra

boston winter lights

stephen bokeh boston bus stop

stephen dancing boston

self portrait boston

boston winter sunset

to the top§share on facebook§follow on twitter§talk to me§subscribe

Taking Off in 2013

Resolutions aren’t usually my thing.  I mean, no one keeps them anyway, right?  So why make any?  Right?  But the more I read about business, success, productivity, and life in general, the more I realize that if you want to achieve bigger things, you need to set goals, write them down, and share them!  I can set goals like a marathon runner, but when my motivation camps out on the couch eating cheesesteaks and watching Top Chef, Google Docs isn’t going to tap me on the shoulder and say, “Bad Carina, no cookie.  And put down the other half of that cheesesteak.”   But by releasing them out in the world, I’ve set up a tiny little thread of accountability that will remind me of what I actually want in life.  And maybe cheesesteaks and Top Chef aren’t quite at the tippy top of that list.

At the top of the list this year is MORE OUTPUT.  As a Virgo on steroids, I’ve got that whole perfectionist “everything must be just so” thing down, but sometimes I get tripped up by it and end up frozen in the same place for far too long without any action.  So that’s my main goal this year.  MORE OUTPUT.  I like that it has nice ring to it and I can easily turn it into one of those ironic motivational posters.  But the problem with this goal/slogan/resolution is that it isn’t really achievable.  When do I know that I’ve reached the nirvana of MORE OUTPUT?  How can that be quantified and tracked?  In order to achieve this elusive and amorphous state of being, I need to break it down further.  So for instance, MORE OUTPUT means blogging more!  Aren’t you excited?!  I am setting the achievable goal of blogging once a week.  And because once I miss a week (let’s not pretend it won’t happen) I know I’ll delete the goal from my Google Doc and consider my entire life a failure, instead I am going to say that my goal is to add 52 new blog posts this year.  And hopefully I blow that out of the water by July!  And hand-in-hand with that one is my website makeover!  I’ve been working on that behind the scenes for about a month, and I’m gonna come out and say it that bit by bit my whole site will get the extreme makeover treatment by the end of the year.  Another MORE OUTPUT business goal is to work a wedding this year.  Whether it’s assisting or second shooting or primary shooting a little backyard bash, I want to give it a try and see if I like it.  Who knows, maybe there will be more kissy kissy on the blog this year!  Finally, I am going to achieve MORE OUTPUT by putting forth more positive energy in this town and using my photography skills to help out a charitable organization or event.

But MORE OUTPUT also applies to my personal life.  Man, I picked such a good slogan this year.  Putting more energy into my relationship with Steve, my family, my friendships near and far, and my cozy little apartment is all part of this whole resolution.  Many of those ideas still need to be refined and quantified, but part of MORE OUTPUT is also to keep regular To-Do lists, so…that’s gonna go on there.  For now let’s toast some Irish Breakfast tea to taking flight in 2013!

flock taking flight

to the top§share on facebook§follow on twitter§talk to me§subscribe

2012: A Year in Snail-o-grams

This is my smartphone.  It’s just a regular phone until I infuse it with my own smartness…via post-it notes stuck to the screen.  My phone might not have Instagram, but at least it has a camera.  Unfortunately, taking photos off the card and sending them into cyberspace is a little less than instantaneous.  It’s more like snail mail, actually.  So, for the times when it isn’t  practical or appropriate to carry around a couple grand worth of pro camera gear to grab a quick sunset shot, I use Snail-o-grams: sometimes blurry, always grainy, never filtered, 2 megapixel peeks behind the scenes of a photographer’s life.  Here is my 2012 in snail-o-grams!


smart phone

A year of wild raspberry picking, apples every day, perfect pancakes, Easter baskets, and leftover Thanksgiving mush… Snuggly kitties, sink kitties, towel kitties, rug kitties, necklace kitties, big yawn kitties, and stopping to smell the flowers kitties… Library computing, wheatpaste hunting, SEPTA riding, and stopping to notice the pretty sky moments… Discovering my favorite mural getting covered up :( and discovering all kinds of other weirdness… A little bit of shopping… A little bit of Pro Tools… A little bit of adventure… And occasional drinking: whisky at poker night, tea in the shower.  And to many more in 2013!


to the top§share on facebook§follow on twitter§talk to me§subscribe