I'm mthree. Those are my initials. Always have been, and thanks to a hubby with a "M" last name; always will be.

I've been a designer for over ten years, I was an animator and a filmmaker once, I was a bride before I was a photographer, I'm a new business owner, but I've always been an artist.

You can get a glimpse of where I've been, a better look at where I am and a peek at where I'm going right here.

You gotta S -T-R-E-T-C-H your browser window to see the BIG pictures...

Friday, September 28, 2007

Picture of the Day - Thursday

I'm a little behind on the picture a day posts - but I have actually been shooting just about every day this week, so I'm backed up on the editing.

However, yesterday I was sitting in the office editing and it started to rain. No big surprise. Then it got really loud - I looked out the window and it was Hailing! Actual balls of ice, on September 27th, oh yes, and it was a good 70 degrees out. This is why they say that when you are in Wisconsin if you don't like the weather - wait five minutes it will change. And it did, about five minutes later it was as if it never happened.
It also remained sunny throughout the thunder and hailstorm. I grabbed the camera to capture the phenomenon for all of you out of staters who wouldn't believe it unless you saw it.

I've been Tagged!

Thanks to Catherine atIn the Moment Photography for the tag.

Since my blog is pretty new, there are proubably alot of things that my non-family/friends readers don't know about me, but I'll try to come up with some fun ones.

1. Post these rules before you give you the facts.
2. List eight (8) random facts about yourself.
3. At the end of your post, choose (tag) someone and list their name (linking to their page).
4. Leave them a comment on their blog letting them know they've been tagged!

8 Random Facts about Mthree (me):

1. I have a thing against certain food textures - cottage cheese, applesauce, basically anything too mushy or lumpy. Ask anyone, I'm a very particular eater.
2. I am on the Aladdin DVD (on the "extras" section where they interivew the filmmakers)
3. I have a brother who was born the same day as me, three years later. He has one dimple and I have the other.
4. In middle school I made my own jewelry out of matboard, nailpolish and my own drawings. I thought it was desperately cool.
5. I used to be anti-purse, now I have a serious addiction to Kate Spade and Coach.
6. I have my own printing press - a wonderful gift from my husband!
7. I have lived in 16 different residences in 4 different states.
8. I was the Racine County Fairest of the Fair in (eek!) 1998.

So now I'm tagging Monica, Danica, and Jessie

Monday, September 24, 2007

Calling all Brides: Wanna Trash a Dress? (Sort of)

The beautiful weather and great Wisconsin scenery have me inspired and I'm looking to do a cool photoshoot.

I have this vision of shooting a bride in a cornfield that I just can't shake. I've also had my eye on some old house ruins I drive by all the time and an old and abandoned greenhouse. Basically the concept is beautiful bride against gritty non-pretty backgrounds. I know some farmers, so we are all good there.

Basically this is a Trash the Dress concept - though I don't anticipate the dress will actually get trashed.

So, I'm looking for a willing bride or former bride (and groom if possible, though not necessary) who has a dress she is willing to get dirty. This woman would need to also be willing to play in a field, climb a tree, stand in ruins, and basically be brave, adventurous and have fun with it for an afternoon. It would need to be a wedding dress - it doesn't need to be fancy, but it would need to fit. I'm thinking sometime in the next week or two to take advantage of the good weather left. You might get cold, dirty, scratched and even bitten by bugs (I'll bring bug spray). But it would be an absolute blast! You would get a fun afternoon and disk of all the resulting images in return. Oh, and infamy on my website.

If you are an interested to-be bride or former bride, send me an email with a picture of yourself at molly@mthreestudio.com
Any of my former brides, are unfortunately not eligible - but to-be brides of mine are, as are complete strangers.
Oh, and it doesn't have to be "your official" dress.

Picture a Day - Tow Trucks

So when you are the photographer in the family you get a few odd photography jobs. Case in point - on Saturday I took a break from yard work and went over to the in-laws house and took pictures of my husband's second cousin's (I think I got that right)tow trucks. They had parked them in the back 40 (the in-laws don't have a back 40 - maybe a back 10, but I have always loved that term) and gotten them all clean and shiny for their big photo shoot. And admittedly, these are some pretty snazzy tow trucks. It was a gorgeous weekend too - I hope you all got to appreciate it!

The family garage (which the tow trucks are part of) has always been very good to me even when Hubby and I were just dating, always fixing my car when needed, so it was nice to return the favor in some way. I'm confident my debt is not repaid with this single job though - I used to drive a real clunker!

That's me reflected in the wheel hub - I always love an opportunity to catch myself "in the act".

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Many Faces of Alex

Fair Warning - This is cuteness overload. I'm not playing with you here - I'm serious.

There are WAY too many pictures of Alex that I love, I've put a bunch here for you, but I could have posted hundreds I think - so this is my version of restraint.

BTW - I think you can click on any picture in my blog to see it bigger.

I'll start things off with "the many faces of Alex":

There is just something about those little jeans...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Alex - Coming Soon!

Last weekend I got to shoot the one year old son of an old school friend. Well, the friend isn't old-because if she is old, then so am I -and I am not old. But we've known each other since - gosh - 5th Grade. So, the friendship is old. I think we will just leave it at that.

Anyway, Alex (her son) is as adorable as they come and we had a blast. He was quite enamored with my camera and even shot a few pictures himself. So, while I'm editing the hundreds of "keepers" that resulted from this photoshoot, I'll leave you with one teaser and the promise of more to come.

Alex took to climbing me like a jungle gym whenever he got interested in the camera (thank goodness for the wide lens!) and I thought this one was particularily cute when he got ahold of my camera strap.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

What you can do (Part 1)

This will be the first of many posts about what you can do to make your wedding day photography better.
"Wait, I thought that is why we were hiring you?" You say? Of course - and me and my eye and my lenses will do everything in our power to make your day look as beautiful as possible. But there are many things that Brides and Grooms can do to improve their pictures that I have no control over really.

Number One - Getting Ready Pictures

The coveted and beautiful "getting ready" pictures have become some of the most popular pictures from the day. It is hard not to catch the anticipation in the lens. So, what could you do as a bride or groom to improve the chances you will have getting ready pictures worth coveting?

1. Choose a space to get ready in that is well lit.
Light is the most important tool a photographer has. If at all possible, choose a room with lots of natural light. That means windows people. Windows with somewhat transparent curtains are even better - the curtains filter and diffuse the light, making it softer and more flattering. Put us in a windowless room with flourescent lights and you can expect some underwhelming results. Give me a room with natural light and I will knock your socks off.

2. Keep the space uncluttered and clean.
Seems simple, but all those target and walgreens bags, shoeboxes, soda cans and candy wrappers really do distract from the emotions in an image and de-class your pictures. Mention to one of your attendants that you only want wedding related stuff out. They can keep tabs then on stashing trash, hiding things under chairs or beds, etc. Shoes (but not boxes), dresses hanging off of furniture or curtain rods, jewelry laying out on the desk or dresser, etc. This all looks beautiful in pictures and adds to the story. Oh yes, and make the bed.

3.Hang your dress on a nice hanger on display.
Nothing is more distracting than a gorgeous shot of your dress (lit beautifully by all that natural light you gave me) and noticing that is hanging on a goofy plastic hanger. This is your wedding dress - give it the royal treatment! Take it out of the bag, put it on a padded hanger or something.

4. Put out your "stuff".
Lay out your jewelry, perfume, garter, cufflinks, vows, bowtie, funny socks, grandma's hanky, whatever the details are. That way when I arrive I can get some nice detail shots of your "stuff" without bugging you for it and taking away from this special time. Your interaction should be with your attendants and the rest of your close people, and as little with me as possible.

5. Trust Me.
I won't take any pictures of you (or anyone else for that matter) that show more than a swimsuit would. Most of the time, any picture I take shows much less. So just enjoy your moments, forget I'm there and have fun getting ready.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

City Slickers 2007

I had the honor of being the photographer for this year's City Slickers Event, benefitting Wheaton Fransiscan Cancer Care - St. Joseph David M. Sherman Cancer Center on Saturday. (I also did all of the graphic design for the event)

This unique party is held at the Sherman family's farm in Mequon and allows a bunch of city folk to be cowboys for an evening. (And you know me - I LOVE a good cowboy!) This year the event had a special layer of meaning, as it also honored Dr. David Sherman, who passed away last year from cancer himself. The love and admiration that filled the barn and tent as people arrived by horse-drawn carriages was so apparent. Though I never met him, it is obvious from the stories that were told and the hundreds of hugs that were passed around that Dr. Sherman was a caring and giving soul, who touched the lives of so many. All of the proceeds from this event go to support the cancer center, and from what I could see, it was a successfull evening! I am also proud to say that Mthree Studio donated a wedding day photography package to the cause, and I did enjoy the silent bidding war (albeit small) that it stirred up. Congrats to the lucky winning couple!

Oh yes, and I must name drop: I did get the opportunity to meet two local Milwaukee celebrities - Sally Severson and Brad Hicks, the latter of which expertly mc'd the event. And kudos to Saz's who created a heavenly station dinner with just about anything you could ever want to eat from mashed potato martinis to crab cakes.

Here are a few of my favorite shots from the night. If you were a guest and would like to order pictures of the event, please go to http://mthreestudio.instaproofs.com

I still can't figure out why my pictures aren't looking as vibrant in color on the blog as they actually are. They absolutely sparkle in real life and seem to fall lifeless here on the blog. Any ideas out there as to why?

Monday, September 17, 2007

For the love of a new lawnmower...

My father-in-law has the uncanny ability to find and repair just about any small machine - usually lawnmowers and snowblowers. He owns several lawnmowers himself (all John Deere) and is constantly fixing, updating, improving and changing them. This is a man who truly enjoys mowing the lawn - it is a leisurely, fun hobby. He has passed this love for mowing the lawn on to his son, my husband. Hubby loves to mow the lawn - when he has the time to. And when we bought our house, he insisted we needed a riding lawnmower (growing up on several acres, he didn't know any different. I, of course, thought a push mower would do the trick. Cutting the grass is hubby's job though so he won). My father-in-law found us a cute, small riding lawnmower, perfectly suitable to our yard size. And it worked great all spring and summer.
Well, he found a better one for us this last week. It even has a bagger. Let me tell you, this man was so excited about this find! So, on Saturday morning he came over and swapped out the old lawnmower for a shiny new John Deere with a bagger. You could smell the testosterone in the air as hubby and father-in-law tried it out on our lower yard. It is a large machine, but works great. And it has a cute mini-John Deere hood ornament to boot.

Here are some pics of hubby on his new toy. Thanks Father-in-law!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

So much going on this weekend...

My weekend is packed - and hopefully the weather will hold up for the most part. This sudden plunge into semi-winter has not been all that much fun. Summer went by all too quickly as far as I'm concerned.

I have several photo shoots this weekend, so I should have some good posts to return with come Monday.

Have a good one!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Picture a Day

Just a little eye candy. Random picture that I took for fun while exploring at Jackie and Jeff's wedding reception.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Happy Birthday Chris!

Yes, another birthday shout out! Happy Birthday to our cousin Chris!

Here is a shot of him at the rehearsal dinner for his brother's wedding - very Chris. Sorry, I don't seem to know how to turn the picture. If you do, let me know.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Happy Birthday Karen!

One of the advantages to being friends or family with me - a shoutout on my blog for your birthday!

My sister-in-law is 25 today - Happy Birthday Karen! I know today is a somber and sobering occasion for so many americans - and I have tremendous respect for that, but for us it was Karen's birthday first and is a happy day too.

In honor of her 25th, here is a picture of her on our wedding day that illustrates well her personality.

Jackie & Jeff

I know, I know - a long time (almost a week!) with no new posts. I have been completely swamped, but I'm starting to catch back up. Plus, our friends Dave and Mary got married this last weekend, finally closing out our personal wedding season for the year (pics from that another day).

I just finished processing all of Jackie & Jeff's wedding photos and so I have some favorites to share. I'm trying out a new piece of software that seems to let me edit super fast - which I am loving.

Jackie & Jeff had an informal, backyard barbeque-style wedding. When I say informal, I'm not kidding- several lawn games, three dogs, five crockpots, four grills one port-a-john and a ton of family and friends peppered their reception. These two knew exaclty what they wanted, and it didn't include any of the trappings of a modern wedding. They kept it simple and allowed themselves to really shine through. To be honest, I didn't realize this until I was editing their pictures. But the joy on Jackie's face is so obvious. And Jeff - well, I'm sure he felt joy inside - it was just stiffled by his dislike for having his picture taken. I caught a few moments where he wasn't aware of me and my lens - and it is apparent Jackie has a happy new husband. He did humor me a few times throught the day - and we have some great shots to show for it. They were blessed with a beautiful day with gorgeous outdoor light. The pictures aren't showing up on the blog as vibrant as they are in real life, not sure why.


Seymour is a family name, so Jackie wanted to stop at this local park for pics with the sign...

This is what happens when you don't give a groom who hates having his picture taken a break:

And post break we are all good...

Jackie and her dad doing a polka:

Easily my favorite picture from the day:

This dog is actually theirs - talk about devotion; he didn't leave their side all day!

That is Jeff's parents kissing in the foreground: