Archive for the ‘About the Photographers’ Category


Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Lately life around the Espedal household has been really good, really full, and really busy.  Among life’s everyday tasks and the craziness I have been spending a lot of time thinking through this year and my photography, my business, and a lot of what that means for me and for my family.  I assume that most people know that I’m expecting my second child around the end of May and although I am still warmly welcoming sessions for sure through April and probably even during the first part of May, and then taking sessions again as soon as I recover from childbirth (and taking 2013 weddings starting the end of July) I am starting to rework some things in my business to make space for being a family of four.  I love love LOVE photography but I also love my family and the Saturday Farmer’s Market, and the surrounding natural areas.  I’ve got great plans for photography this summer and also great plans for exploring and doing life with lots of joy with my family this summer.  Part of that is re-thinking how I process my images and how long that takes me and what that’s worth to me.  I may outsource my editing, but I may also put in some hard work now to change up my workflow after a session and wedding to give me less time in front of a computer and more time in nature with my loves.  I’m also deciding to add mini-sessions to my year to give some folks the opportunity for a session with posed photos that they wish to put on their Christmas cards and the rest of the year to only accept the type of sessions I’m passionate about doing (documentary style sessions that are more candid and fun and much much much less posed).  This excites me.  This means when I spend 2-4 hours away from my family (at a session and driving time) that I’m doing something I’m 100% passionate about.

I’m excited for 2013 and all the fresh life it’s going to bring.  So, as part of preparation for these changes I’m challenging myself to start taking more photos that are not of my daughter, not in what I’ve always thought of as ideal light, and to slow down to see those things so I can more fully enjoy them.  I also am challenging myself to get out without the camera and do activities I am passionate about.  One of these is pottery.  I’ve wanted to take a pottery class for years and years.  The process is so relaxing and beautiful to me.  Thanks to my wonderfully thoughtful husband, he purchased me a private lesson for my birthday last year and I FINALLY schedule and took the lesson in January.  It’s for sure something I will continue to pursue and I’m hoping to take regular classes either in the summer or fall when this babe is out of my belly.  My piece I created is in the first two images and proudly holds our garlic (which we use quite often around here).  Huge thanks to Allison at Midwest Clay Project for being so patient with me and showing me the ropes.  I’m equally as excited to get out with Jolene on my bike again this summer.  I have a bike path map for Madison (also a gift from Jordan) and I have every intention to find babysitters for the babe and to take Jolene out as much as possible this summer.  You might not think these two are “challenges” but I know that it’s a fight to give them proper time. By doing so, it will only help my home life and my business life.

Well, enough rambling, I need to pack for a last minute trip to Colorado tomorrow.  Enjoy the last little bit of February and some recent photos from around my house.












First Birthday Party

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

My daughter recently just turned one year old!  I can hardly believe it and I’m so thrilled to watch her grow.  I’ve been taking daily photos of her for her first year of life (which I will share the 2nd half of the first year at some point but you can view the first 6 months of photos HERE). For her birthday party I really wanted to put together a great day even though she will only remember it through the photos I’ve taken.  I sure had fun doing a lot of DIY details this year.  I also handmade some of her gifts and she received an amazing, handmade (by Grandpa and help from dada) wooden kitchen set from Grandpa and Grandma.  I can’t wait to photograph her over the years playing with these gifts.

Ok – So let’s get to it, I want to share the photos with you.  Enjoy a peek into my life.


First, below is an apron I sewed for Jolene.  I didn’t have a pattern and was a bit skeptical that I could actually pull it off but I had some expensive fabric (that I didn’t want to ruin) a new (to me) sewing machine, and an adult size apron to possibly mimic.  It’s a child’s size apron and it totally hangs down to her ankles but that’s the way I planned it to be.  I wanted to give her something that she would have and use for years and years.  Here it is:

The reason I wanted to sew an apron is because Jordan’s dad builds furniture and he planned to make Jolene a wooden kitchen set.  He repurposed an old desk, the sink faucet, the sink, and a knob or two.  Jolene loves it!  It’s also a bit big for her but it’s perfect for what she loves doing right now, which is opening and closing cupboards, standing, and banging toys together.

FYI: the felt carrots above were handmade by me also.  Super easy to make if anyone wants to know how.

View of the cranes from above (photo below)

Now for the party hats!  I really wanted to create party hats that I could keep and use year after year.  I also made these with felt and they were a party hit.

Now for a few of my favorites of the Birthday girl!  Thanks for looking. :) Happy Birthday baby girl.  You’re the love of our lives.


Finding My Voice

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

In the photography industry I find a lot of photographers talking about being yourself and putting yourself out there so you repel and attract the type of clients you want to hire you.  Well, lately, I find myself getting lost in all the details, all the expectations I put on myself, and trying to dance to the beat of my own drum rather than joining the huge, huge choir of thousands of other photographers doing the same. exact. thing.

So today, as I sit in the quiet of my own home after a long (oh so long and tiring and long) morning of trying to figure out what my daughter needs in order to get back on a regular napping schedule.  She’s strong willed, and believe me it’s in the best of ways and I’m happy for it, but she (sometimes) will. not. just. go. to. SLEEP.  Ahem, ok.  (can you tell it’s been a long day) Where was I?  Oh ya, so I’m sitting here pondering the fact that I WANT to share bits of myself, here and in this space and not to mention in a way that I can feel proud and genuinely represented.  I keep thinking and thinking and thinking of the best way to go about getting started – which then results in me doing absolutely nothing.  No good.  So my advice to myself came somewhere within me today.  Just. Start. Writing.

As a side note, this reminds me a lot of when Jordan and I were starting somewhat from scratch with the style of our home.  We had just gotten married, spent 6 days honeymooning in Philadelphia (Jordan surprised me for the honeymoon and picked THE BEST location, in my book) and then another 5 or so days in Milwaukee at a wonderful little bed and breakfast.  After the honeymoon we flew back to Colorado Springs (where I grew up and where we lived before the wedding) and three days later we drove our car, packed-to-the-brim full and moved to Madison, WI to a cute little flat on Winnebago St on Madison’s east side.  Because we had just moved AND didn’t want to spend a ton of money moving AND because we mostly got money for our wedding (per our implied request) we came with very very little (mostly our clothes, some linens and blankets, and the kitchen stuff I had been saving up).  So, what I’m trying to get at is that we didn’t have much and I was excited, nervous, and anxious to start creating our home space into a place I enjoyed coming home to every day.  Now, Jordan and I are very much thrifty people.  I am a complete sucker for road side and thrift store finds.  We are not (NOT) Pottery Barn people.  It could be nice to have a home furnished with the nicest things from Pottery Barn but my soul would probably die a little because I need quirk and charm around my home.  So, why was I nervous and anxious?  Because, I’d find things I like and would piece things together and at first I majorly questioned myself and my taste level.  I worried our home would end up not representing us well.  I worried our home would look like a thrift store before long and wouldn’t have a coherent style but again my advice to myself was just to start, only choose items Jordan or I loved, and never look back.  Turns out, it totally and completely worked!  Our house is beautiful, and quirky, and unique.

If the point wasn’t understood, I’m trying to just tell myself to start blogging and do it my way with no regard to how other photographers are doing their thing.  And for goodness sake, I need to remind myself to simply just not worry about this place being a place I love since I hope to only share things here that are fully and genuinely me.

Now that I have that off my chest.  Here’s to fresh starts and being unashamedly me.  And a few photos of our Christmas decorations in our home and friends/family gatherings this past christmas.  (see – no regard to what others think, or I clearly wouldn’t post christmas decoration photos on my blog in February).

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Visitors and friends hanging out in our home.  (photos below)


Christmas at the Espedal home with Jordan’s family.  (photos below)


Personal: Photographing my everyday

Monday, December 12th, 2011

What am I going to want to remember about my daughter and my small family 20 years from now?  What are the photos I will pull off the shelf and search for in an album when I want to remember how small she was, the face she makes when she’s blowing raspberries, that toothless grin, or the way I love how she points at everything.

Here’s a little glimpse of my personal project I’ve been working on in order sharpen my photography skills during this time that I am focusing most of my time and energy into one little being.  I’ve taken one (or 2 or 30) photo(s) almost every day since her birth.

and, in case you didn’t see it (because I forgot to mention it on here…  oops), my Daily Life with Jolie photos were featured on a wonderful blog Let The Kids Dress Themselves a while back.  Here’s a screen shot! :) Check it out if you haven’t already!


Jolene Claire

Saturday, March 12th, 2011

This one little girl is the light of my life.  She was born on March 20th at 11:20pm.  7 lbs and 7 oz and 20 inches long.  Now almost 8 weeks later she is over 9 lbs and 20 1/2 inches long.  She braved her first flight this past week – or I should say, I braved my first flight alone with a newborn (on Mother’s Day no less) and came out alright.

I’ve been so behind on my blogging and haven’t even blogged some of my favorite sessions from last year (shame on me!) but do intend to get caught up soon.

In the meantime, I’m here in my hometown of Colorado Springs, CO preparing to photograph two weddings in one weekend.  This will mark the end of my maternity leave that I declared to take and the longest I will have been away from Jolene.  While you wait for wedding photos and for me to get caught up on this blog check out my sweet daughter.

Do We Really See?

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

Just recently I’ve been trying to get to the bottom of these questions:  Do I really see?  What am I really seeing? One of my favorite messages I’ve ever heard spoken was all based around this premise that everyone longs to be seen, heard, and known.  It starts with the seeing and if you’re really seeing someone then you will hear them whether they are using their mouth to speak to you or their body language.  To see is also to hear one would say.  Then taken a step further love is shown by knowing someone and you can’t really know them until you’ve seen or heard them right?  If I see my husband and hear what he’s telling me day in and day out then I am going to know him and react to that accordingly.  For my husband – knowing him and loving him meant getting rid of our tv and minimizing most (if not all) luxuries so that we could have the one luxury of eating good, organic, and local food.  It’s not so much of a sacrifice anymore because I love him.  I’ve seen, heard, and known what gives him life and I’m willing to get rid of those things that honestly don’t give me life so that I can love him well.

So in thinking all this through I’ve been searching for something outside the photography world to bring inspiration to love wildly, live simply, and enjoy others more and I am sort of shocked at what I’ve found!  Yes, there are some photographers I love and will follow but the used to be list of about 30 has now dwindled to about 5 and instead I’ve found real life going on – people sharing their experiences, difficulties, and joys.  It’s so refreshing.  Lately one blog that has my complete and utter attention is one that a father began writing when he was not yet quite a father.  He began writing an honest and bold account of the journey of he and his wife trying to get pregnant, then having the baby, and life before, after, and in between.  There are others also and one might say I’m only stuck on these blogs because I am now expecting my first child myself (yay!) but I say – I’ve always loved family, life, and real moments so pregnant or not I still would have loved finding this blog.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how we want to raise baby and what kind of parents we want to be and what kind of household we want to be.  I imagine creativity encouraged, opening our home to lots of people, learning to be free to be more ourselves each day, and loving wildly!  Only time will tell and honestly I don’t even think I’m giving you complete thoughts so that you the reader can make sense of this.  This is on my mind lately – so, on that note I’ll give a short preview of the Markofski girls.

2011 current/future clients:  Due to the pregnancy I will not be accepting any weddings (unless you happen to be my younger brother) for 2011 until June in order to offer time for baby to enter the world and the two of us to adjust.  I will be scheduling engagement sessions this fall and after the baby is born depending on how well I can still move around and get the shots I need and how I am feeling.  Please take note as this may affect availability for engagement sessions.