Thursday, November 30, 2006
After seeing an interview about the upcoming movie "DREAM GIRLS" (about the Supremes)I was inpsired to do some beautiful black and white photography from the 40s and 50s.
Krista from Jacksboro came in with this beautiful dress! Her hairstyle and beautiful makeup inspired me to create this image of her.
Ive always loved the photography from that era, it was so classical.
Krista brought her adorable Maltese dog named Lilly, which i will be posting images of her later.
Thank you Krista for inspiring me! Here is a link to the movie DreamGirls.
Well, at last JACK FROST HAS ARRIVED! I woke up this morning to hearing freezing ice hitting my bedroom window. I looked outside and it was all white!
Its beginning to have snow flurries today and should be a white winter wonderland before too long!
Yesterday my flowers were beautiful and blooming. Today they are encrusted in a coating of ice.
The studio will be closed today due to the unsafe driving conditions.Ive got the fireplaces going, hot apple cider on the stove and am making my White Chili.
To make your own big pot of white chili, Read below. Its so good and doesn't take very long to make!
Lewis and Clark's White Chili
Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
3-4 Cans Great Northern white beans
2 pounds Chicken breast; No skin or bone
1 tablespoon Olive oil
1 Clove Garlic minced
2 medium Onions -- chopped
2 teaspoons Ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon Ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon Ground oregano
2 cans Mild green chilies; chopped -- 4oz each
4 cups Chicken stock or broth
20 ounces Monterey Jack -- grated
1 1/2 cup Sour cream
jalepeno pepper chopped If DESIRED.
Place chicken in large sauce pan. Add cold water to cover and bring to
simmer. Cook until tender, approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
saucepan and dice into 1/2" cubes. Using the same pan discard water and
heat oil over medium heat.
Add onions until translucent. Stir in garlic,
chilies, cumin, cayenne pepper, oregano and cloves. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add chicken, beans, stock and 12 oz cheese; let simmer for 15 minutes. Laddle
into large bowls and top with 1 oz cheese. Serve with a side of sour cream and
chopped jalapeno peppers.
Serve with some Hot Garlic bread. YUMMY! AND MAKES THE HOUSE SMELL TERRIFIC!!!
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
He had the biggest smile and the best attitude I've ever seen in a person.
He was the oldest living relative I had and he lived right close in Graham. I regret not getting to see him more often. He passed away on Monday. He was a good man and even though I didnt get to spend a lot of time with him, I loved him instantly.
He took good care of my grandmother and provided for her for many years.
This was in the newspaper. He was a pretty neat man.
The legacy of Tom Brightman is as unique and colorful as the man himself.
Tom was a passionate man with strong opinions and deep emotions who loved his Lord, his family and drilling for oil.
Some might call him a “self made” man, but Tom was always quick to proclaim to anyone in hearing distance that any success was due to the blessings of the Lord.
In fact, in 1975, his love and confidence in his Lord was so sure that there could be no other name for his new drilling company but “Praise The Lord Drilling.”
Tom believed that the Lord “wanted good things” for him and his family so that he could pass those blessings along to others, and he spent the rest of his life doing just that. Many lives have been touched by the hand of Tom Brightman as he quietly and sometimes, not-so-quietly, met needs that the Lord presented to him.
His generosity is and will continue to be a blessing to Graham now and to generations to come.
Monday, November 27, 2006
My son and I went out to arestaurant and the waitress seemed sort of sad. I asked her what was wrong and she said she had cut her hand that day on a plate and was having a bad day.
After she left my son looked at me and said "Do you think we should do it?" (Give her a gift of generosity) and I said "yes!"
So I decided that I was going to do my first Pay it Forward gift. I didnt have any cash, so I left my son at the restaurant, ran to a nearby United Grocery store and went in to find an ATM.
There wasnt one, but the manager told me that I could get cash at the register.
I bought a cute little Penguim Christmas ornament and a big candy cane and went to the first register.
There was a couple standing there with a little baby. They were talking to the cashier and saying something about their WIC card, etc.
I asked the cashier how much their bill was and she told me ($91.00) The couple said they were at Walmart before and that the manager of Walmart wouldnt take thier card either. So I told the cashier, I'll pay for it, but dont tell them.
She did and the couple got susupisous and started asking what was going on. Before I could leave the couple found out what happened and the young mother hugged me. She introduced me to her husband and adorable baby. She told me I did not have to do that, but I explained that I saw the Oprah show today and I felt like God put it on my heart to do it. She said she wanted to pay me back and I told her "Just Pay it forward to someone else, God Bless you " and left.
It was sooo wonderful! WOW!!! I was shaking while driving!
Then I went back to the restaurant and had a nice dinner with my son. My son and I sneakily placed $100.into the little pocket on the cute stuffed Penguin and when the young waitress (who looked about 6 months pregnant) gave me the check, I handed her the cute little stuffed Penguin and told her I was moved today by watching Oprah and the tip was for her. She looked stunned and then she hugged me!
WOW! I got 2 awesome hugs tonight. My son got a lesson in giving and I feel on top of the world!
The reason Im telling you is so that you will Pay it Forward too! I cant tell you how great I feel right now! I will wait until Saturday to go it again, this time Im going to video tape it. WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW........
A few weeks ago Oprah gave 314 people in her audience a BANK OF AMERICA Debit Card with $1,000.00 on it.
Her only rules were to give it to a stranger and video tape what you do with it. You could divide it amongst as many people as you wanted.
Ive been thinking about doing something like this ever since I saw it. I dont know who or where I want to do it. There are so many deserving people. Check out the link below to see the show.
I think the ANGEL TREE at the Mall is a good place to start! If you decide to do something, please let me know. Ive thought about Abused Womens shelters, Ive thought about so many things my head is spinning. Any ideas anyone??? I cant decide!
Anonymously pay for gas for strangers
Buy lunch for a homeless person
Randomly give away a prepaid transit card for a couple of trips on a bus or train
Volunteer—it costs nothing but means a lot.
Buy flowers to cheer up a co-worker
Write letters to troops serving in Iraq
Clean up a neighborhood park
Buy a board game for a local children's hospital
Buy school supplies for a needy school
Buy coats and hand them out to the homeless
Buy pet food and supplies for the animals at the pound
Search your local newspaper for stories about people in need and find a way to help them
Pick up the tab for a family at a restaurant
Buy theater tickets for parents with a newborn—then babysit!
Buy food and prepare meals for the elderly in your neighborhood
Buy instruments for a needy school's music class
Travel to New Orleans and go help build a Habitat home
Pay for a string quartet to give a concert at a local nursing home
Donate iPods for soldiers serving in Iraq
Take a terminally sick friend on a weekend getaway
Buy a new wardrobe for kids in need
Help rebuild a home destroyed by a fire
Make a family's holidays a little brighter by buying all their holiday gifts
More details will be available soon!
Sunday, November 26, 2006
The Cowboys were awesome and won the game against the Tampa Bay Bucs 38-1o. Boy the ENERGY LEVEL WAS HIGH! Everyone was making so much noise that the Bucs couldnt hear the calls. It was amazing!
Tony Romo was incredible and it was a great game! We hardly sat down!
What was also fun was when the crowd did a "WAVE" and it went around the stadium 8 times! It was so fun to be a part of it in person! The Half Time game was awesome too! Carrie Underwood sang 2 songs including her hit single "before He cheats" There were fireworks and it was really cool. The last time I was at Texas Stadium I was Photographing Tony Dorsett for a commercial assignment. It was a lot of fun, and I got to spend about an hour with Mr. Dorsett.
Thursday, November 23, 2006
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
Tuesday, November 21, 2006
There is NO professional lighting, posing or even consideration for a suitable location.
However, at least they are out of the bright sun, which I see all the time lately.
This shows that the "photographer" does not really have any idea of what professional portaiture is.
Its a good attempt, but no better than what a neighbor could do for free.
Now this is more like it!
There was a clothing consultation done with these people prior to the photo session.
Careful care was given as to what time of day the portrait was to be taken, the location was scouted before the actual photo shoot date.
Proper lighting was brought onto the location as was a tripod and the proper lens.
Even though this image looks very casual, a lot of time and attention and equipment was used to create this Heirloom portrait.
Now this is something that could proudly hang over the Fireplace mantel for many years.
Monday, November 20, 2006
I really hate to get on my soap box, but I feel the need to express this.
The thing I keep hearing over and over from my clients is that they first had gone to another studio and was not satisfied.
It makes me sad to hear these stories. I always ask to see the photos if they have any to see what it is that they didnt like.
Time and time again when I see these images it is so obvious. TERRIBLE LIGHTING and POSING! (and wrong lens choice)
I really am not trying to sound negative here. Its just that I learned these things in college.
That is why I went to school, to learn lighting. PHOTOGRAPHY actually means "To PAINT WITH LIGHT" Photo means "Light" and "Graphy" is to" Paint or Draw".
But so many of these pop-up studios have NO TRAINING in PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY. They simply had children and had fun taking their own kids portraits and so they Became Photographers! WoW!
I like to put bandaids on my sons knees but this doesnt make me a DOCTOR.
Now some people do have a natural affinity to see light and this is good. They are ahead of the game. But some others do not, and unfortunately it shows in their work.
Please please please, when you are looking to hire a photographer, find out thier credentials. Look at their work. Look at the lighting and posing. Its obvious who knows what they are doing and who does not.
I hold 5 degrees in Professional Photography, which means that Ive been trained extensively in lighting and posing and all the aspects of professional photography.
If you want photos that look like snap-shots then save your money and just have a friend take the photos.
Currently our studio only makes recomendations for Joe Rogers Photography (he has an excellent command of lighting) Torin Halsey (hes got a formal education and knows what he is doing too.) and Something New by DeEdra. She can see light as well, and has a relaxed yet good posing style.
Unfortunately those are the only ones AT THIS TIME, that I can recommend and feel good about it.
Below is an example of very bad posing and bad lens choice and then an example of much better. At least the lighting is DECENT in the bad example, (except for the distracting background.)
Okay.... Im off my soapbox.
I guess its in my blood, I was a photography teacher before, I cant help but WANT to teach. I hope this has been helpful.
Sunday, November 19, 2006
I know so many people who have said that "GOD PUT IT ON MY HEART TO ADOPT".
I wanted to tell you about a wonderful program that helps with the expenses of adoption. Adoption can be very expensive. Christian music singer Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife have 6 children and 3 of them are adopted.
Their first adopted childs name is Shaohannah Hope, for which the foundation is named after. See the link here.http://members.shaohannahshope.org/site/PageServer This organization gives grants to aid in the adoption process. It is not a 100% fee which completely covers all the expenses, but is meant to be a shot in the arm, and to "set a fire" in which your local church or community can raise funds and help to raise the remainder of the funds for the adoption.
Check out the site its fantastic!
Also to hear about the interview go to this link on Crown.Orgs web site. to hear the story of how the Chapmans daughter was persistent in trying to get her parents to adopt in the first place!
Its an amazing story!http://www.crown.org/radio/shaohannahshope.asp?&aid=SCHOM
Ive always loved FOCUS on the FAMILY Christian Radio program. Check out their site.
Its called "My God my Savior" Click here to hear it on his web site.
I heard him say in an interview a few months back. I dont have to understand cancer, or anything, because I am not skilled to understand, what God has willed, what God has planned.
Thats the words of this song... click below to enjoy Aaron.
About why i left town so suddenly...
I wanted to tell you all why I had to leave so suddenly on Thursday.
I just had to go and pay my respects to someone.
When I was only 15 years old I met a neat family. The Orrs' from Odessa. They lived right down the street from me and my dad and sister. My parents had just divorced and my sister and I were living with our father in a new town.
I met the Orr family because they lived right near the baseball park and very near our home.
The Orrs had 2 boys and 1 girl who were the ages of me, my brother and sister.
We became fast friends. I dated their oldest son all throughout highschool and we were married and had a beautiful daughter.
I adored my mother-in-law and father-in-law. They were very kind and fun and good to me and my family.
Unfortunately our marriage didnt last, (We were too young and we divorced at 21). Even though our marriage only lasted 3 years, my relationship with his parents has lasted 29 years!
I've always valued my relationship with the family. The mother Linda was like a mother to me, and I always kept in touch with her throughout the years. She and her husband were even in attendence when Bruce and I were married 15 years ago! (now thats unusual.)
Sadly, recently Linda was diagonsed with Parkinsons and Ive watched helplessly the past couple of years while the disease progressed and began to take the woman I knew away.
I have great compassion for people with Parkinsons now and have seen first hand the devastation this disease brings. As if things werent bad enough, very recently Linda was diagonosed with Lung Cancer. According to the Doctors, she only has about 2-6 months to live.
Her husband called me himself and told me the news. I had to rush there, as they placed her into Hospice. The long six hour drive by myself was so lonely.
Even though my mother is living and I love her very much, this woman was very much like a mother to me and I always turned to her for advice over the years.
I have a fantastic mother-in-law now, but I will always treasure my relationship with Linda Orr.
It was her who let me borrow her car the day I took my driving test and got my drivers license.
It was Linda and her husband who threw me a graduation party the night of my high school graduation. It was Linda who drove me my Lamaze Childbirth classes when my first husband had to work. It was her who helped raise my daughter while I worked 2 jobs and put myself through collge.
She had her faults and I admit that we didnt always see eye to eye. But she always treated me with respect and kindness. I only remember one arguement we ever had in the 28 years that I've known her.
She is lying in a comfortable bed in the Hospice House in Odessa right now. With her kind and ever-loving husband of 46 years next to her. She smiled at me and kissed me and grabbed a hold of my hand and squeezed it. She was funny, even with the medication and everything. She ate a big lunch and chatted a little bit, then she got hooked up to her oxygen and and then settled in for a nap.
There is not 2 finer people in this world. She's too young for this to be happening to her, she is only 68.
I cant help but feel as if a part of me will die when she passes away. I know that someday I will see her again.
Sleep well tonight Linda, I love you.
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Hey Guys, This is Amanda. We got some beautiful images of her today.
I love the one with the baloons! I love all the ones we took outdoors today!
Amanda is a cheerleader and very involved in school activites. She also was crowned Homecoming Queen this year! She had the most beautiful gown, Ive never seen anything like it before.
Here are just 2 of the images from todays photo shoot, But Ill be adding more of her later.
Thanks Amanda. I really enjoyed getting to meet you and your family!
Here is a close up of one of her images. I delibertly added the grain look which reminds me of high speed film I used to shoot in the 80's.
Sunday, November 12, 2006
My son is a huge Texas A&M fan and he and his dad went to the game yesterday.
The cool thing was that my son was actually on ESPN for a few seconds! They filmed him
twice once in the stands with his cool A&M game hat on an Aggie Wig and jersey and Shades.
and another time with the ESPN Cheerleaders! A lot of his friends saw him and called him
on his cell to tell him.
He was pretty down though about the final score. However, a TASTY burritto at Frebirds took the
sting out of the 1 point defeat.
To read about the game go here to
Hey Guys, This is Shelby!
I first photographed her a few years ago with her entire family.
Shelby goes to Henrietta High School and is a Senior.
Shes a beautiful young lady. I love this image of her in the fall leaves,
she was so relaxed and natural. And I love her adorable freckles
on her nose! They are so charming.
Shelby has plans to attend Texas Tech University. Her mother raises
Yorkies puppies and has the most beautiful and healthy dogs. Check
out her site at www.yorkieluv.com
An image I created of 8 Yorkies was recently published in the
Book. Its a beautiful
with the top images
of the year.
It was an honor to be
To purchase a copy
of the book
go to this link
Or go to my original site to
http://www.photographybydixie.com/about.html and you can
order it from there.
I titled the image
"NO GIRLS ALLOWED!"
Saturday, November 11, 2006
Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. Theres just something magical about all the color, the crisp air and the promise of family gathering soon for Thanksgiving.
Its chilly Friday night Football games, tailgate parties and marshmallows outside over the firepit.
Today I was so honored to create a beautiful portrait for a wonderful young family.
They recently purchased a cabin up in the rolling hills near Muenster, Texas.
Talk about breathtaking! It was magical as I followed them through the winding roads, over the creek with tree lined little burrows that made me feel as if I were up in New England or in Madison County.
The children were jewels and never once complained.
Ahhh.... This is why I became a photographer. The crisp cool air, the sound of their cattle mooing and the rustle of the leaves in the breeze and a beautiful family and their hospitality.
Life is good. Its very good........
We are having a FUN CONTEST!!!
We want to see you funny baby photos.
You can send in a photo of yourself, or of your own child.
The funnier the better!
We will choose one first place winner and one runner up!
The winner gets a $75.00 gift certificate to PHOTOGRAPHY by Dixie for any type of photos you want, Plus 2 Movie tickets to the new Carmike Movie Theatre!
The runner up gets a $35.00 certificate and a $20.00 Gift Certificate to Logans' Steak House! The contest will end March 1st!
So send in your baby photos! You can E-mail them to PDIXIE@SW.RR.COM.
Be sure and size them around 72 dpi and no bigger than a 4x5. If possible.
We anxiously await your FUNNY Baby Pics! The winner will be posted on our site as will some of the others that we thought were pretty funny and cute too.
Hey Guys, I wanted to post a couple of images of Samantha! Shes got a great sophisticated look for her age!
Samantha works at TANGLES hair salon and is a really worldly young lady. She used to live in Saudi Arabia, and shes been to many countries. Her father is in the USAF and so shes traveled quite extensively.
I really did enjoy getting to know Samantha.
I cant wait for her to see her images next week!
This is Chaz and Brittany. I really love this image. The sunset and sky was amazing.
Back in the 80s when I was in college, i learned how to create a
silouette. Ive loved doing them ever since.
I really enjoyed working with you Brittany and Chaz. I hope you enjoy your images and look forward to seeing you next week!
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Hello! I just wanted to post these Executive images of some of the Top Realtors in town!
Kelly Thomas contacted me recently and I photographed several of the Hirschi Real Estate team here in town! http://www.hirschirealtors.com They are Kelly Thomas, Tracy Powell, Jody Brannon, Carla Rogers, Melanie Whaite and Roma Martin! Kelly is a really special young lady. I first met her when I photographed her wedding several years ago. She comes from a terrific family and I think shes pretty special.
Having an updated Business portrait is so important! Often I see people go many years before getting a new photo, and there is really nothing to be afraid of.
With Photography by Dixie's ability to light you properly and then a little airbrushing, your portrait can be perfect! Thanks to all of you who entrusted me to create your new image! I appreciate your trust!
Monday, November 06, 2006
I wanted to post this for all the fellow military wives like myself. There is a website set up for military wives and thier children to deal with the stress of having their spouses deployed. The past 5 years since 9-11 have been very hard on military families and this site was created by a Navy wife who really cares. Its called OPeration HomeFront and also CINCHOUSE, here are the links
http://www.operationhomefront.net also is www.cinchouse.com which is more of a chat room site and offers lots of support for military families.
My own husband is in his 22nd year in the Air Force.
There is also a section where you can send an ECare package. Anyone can do this, check out the site to see how you can help!
I have so much respect for my fellow military wives and espcially those who have had their husbands deploy for 15 months, only to return for 6-9 weeks home and then deploy again. The emotional toll it takes is so high.
Be sure and check out the sites and refer them to others. Remember at Photography by Dixie US Military families NEVER PAY A SESSION FEE.
We so value our clients who are paying the ultimate sacrifice for our country. God bless you all.
My own son was a little tyke when we began taking the photos and its so great to see them all growing up!
I got a little time to walk around and see the booths, thanks to my wonderful hubby who stood in for me and took photos so I could do a little early Christmas shopping myself!
There were several photographers there this year (seems more and more each year, I remember when it used to be just me and Joe Rogers photography.) I was impressed with a new lady who has only been in business a year. Something New photography.
I met her last year and she is a very nice lady. Her photojournalistic style to weddings is so relaxed and beautiful!
I am full for 2007 for wedding dates so I can, in good concience refer her for weddings. So many photographers start out and they just dont have an eye for lighting. Lighting is truly the crucial part of photography, but DeEdra can see light and is doing an amazing job! (dont have her website handy,but im sure its easy to find!)
Of course my good friend Todd Peterson in Nocona is good too, he's more of a traditional photographer like me and he and I have worked together on a wedding up in Frisco and McKinney before. Check him out as well at http://www.petersonsportraitgallery.com
There were a lot of great vendors there including Simply Sweet Designs, Nacols Jewelry, Lombards Boutique, Friendze, Decorative Accents , The Pecan Shed and The Basketcase!
The only downside to the whole event was the big rainshower we had right at closing time. A lot of people got soaked! But i was patient and it finally passed.
Thanks to all of you who came out, and your portraits will be ready soon!
Friday, November 03, 2006
Hey Guys, Well this week, we will be at Christmas Magic from Thurs-Sunday.
The Hours are Friday 9-6 Sat 9-6 Sun 12-5. We look forward to seeing you at the MPEC.
The studio will be closed during these days, so if you would please wait till we are back into the studio on Wednesday we will be able to return phone calls and resume normal business.
Part of the money that we help raise goes to the JUNIOR LEAGUE OF WICHITA FALLS. The League does a lot of charity work for various organizations in town and has give almost 2 Million dollars in the past 25 years!
We have taken the Santa photos there for the past 10 years and this years background is the cutest we've ever done! I came up with the idea to an old fashioned Santas Workshop type background. We spared no expense on the background and props. It ran us around $2,000.00 for the lumber, props, wood, cedar planks, rocking chair, etc. But we wanted something unique and one of a kind. My husband and I spent Days and countless hours building this and last night the kids really loved it! (Parents too!)
Come on out to the MPEC this weekend and see Santa.
By the way, hes the real deal, not some guy with a fake beard and pillow stuffed in his shirt.
Here are 2 examples of some of our wonderful clients with Santa from last nights event.