Princess’ in the Woods

As a documentary photographer, I prefer to shoot my clients in familiar settings-primarily their home. However, a location that is near and dear to their heart is great too. On family land, chasing their dogs among open fields, cows, a creek, and mountains. Playing in the tree house in the middle of the woods that the family used for hunting trips and games of hide and seek.

 

 

The Broadhead Family| Hart’s Desire Documentary Photographer

This family. Oh my goodness this family. I always look forward to their sessions and this past fall was nothing short of amazing. They live in the most beautiful place in the county; among mountains, streams, and the most gorgeous fall color you ever laid eyes on.  Enjoy!

 

 

Wood Wedding| Hart’s Desire Wedding Photography

Nothing beats a fall wedding in Virginia.

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Location: Flint Hill Public House in Flint Hill, VA.

The End of a Season

My parents recently sold their dream home. They built the house they would raise 2 children in over 25 years ago.  They decided to close this season of their lives to start a new season in a new, smaller home with little maintenance so they can enjoy their lives more.  Before they turned the keys over the the new owner’s I wanted to document this time in their lives.

This mailbox is for my son. My mom and he put little treats in it for each other. He knows when the flag is up he has a little something waiting for him.

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We planted this tree as a little sapling when my sister and I were young.

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The Logan Family| Hart’s Desire Family Photography

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Cadyn Speziale| A Call To Artists| Hart’s Desire Photography

Meet Cadyn. She’s a jewelry designer and owner of Gathered. Her jewelry is absolutely stunning works of art. Words of caution-this is a picture heavy post full of beauty and inspiration!

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Q. Tell us about yourself and your creative journey up this point in your life.

I was definitely raised in a creative home: both of my parents are professors at the Savannah College of Art & Design, so my sister Isadora and I grew up with ever-changing walls displaying photographs and paintings by them and their friends. I remember when I was little my mom made me a huge board covered in felt with little felt cut-outs of her own designs that I played with, sticking them onto the board, creating scenes for hours– which is probably where my love for felt and color began. My dad, a landscape photographer, instilled in me a deep appreciation for Nature and seeing things through an observer’s eye. I went to a handful of “art day camps” as a kid and sought out art classes in school, which all led to the obvious choice of going to the college I practically grew up with (SCAD).

And now to shamelessly sell myself: I got my BFA in Fiber Arts in 2005. I had an amazing opportunity to create a beadwork jewelry line for Trina Turk’s Spring Fashion show after graduating, I interned with Working Class Studio where one of my designs was picked up and printed on journals sold at Barnes & Noble, and then I attempted the near-impossible: making a living solely off my own beadwork. That lasted a year, haha… While I worked in various retail environments after college (ranging from a small, high-end boutique to the natural/alternative health world), I carried a seed with me: the idea to open my own shop, selling my work and, more importantly, supporting other local talent.

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Q. Walk us thru your creative process. What inspires you?

Oh my gosh, it may be easier to say what DOESN’T inspire me. But, in a nutshell, I’m excited by Nature: the plant and animal worlds; mycology; both microcosmic and macrocosmic images; geology; the land, the sea, the stars; the chemistry of change. I extract designs from either photographs I’ve taken or a culmination of imagery I’ve come across while researching words like “rust” or “constellation.” My sense of color comes from my Color Theorist mother, and my patience for beading comes from my Zen Buddhist father. My gravitation toward questioning existing practices and thinking outside the box is energized by my Philosopher sister. My partner, Drew’s, artwork and dedication inspires me– we both tend toward extremely time-intensive processes illustrating abstract ideas. Sometimes I feel like I’m just this sponge-vehicle for other creative energies around me.

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Q. Where can we find your jewelry?

At Gathered, of course! Sorry, I had to say that… I also currently sell my work at the Loft gallery in Culpeper, as well as my personal online shop (www.cadynspeziale.com).

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Q. You opened your shop, Gathered, a little over a year ago. Tell us about the shop. What made you take the leap to open it?

I’m not sure what ultimately made me decide “This is it, it’s time.” I had taken a break from selling my work for a few years and it was suddenly just necessary to embrace the creative process again. I spent a year doing a self-imposed project of creating one piece of bead work a week, and before I knew it one piece wasn’t enough. I was making two pieces a week (each bracelet involves roughly 6-7 hours of beading, then an additional hour for finishing), on top of working 30-35 hours a week at the natural foods store. Finally Drew and I decided, after many conversations, breakdowns (on my end), and number-crunching that if I didn’t try this idea of a shop now I would never do it. We don’t have children yet, so the financial risk seemed worth it. Plus, we grow and forage a lot of our own food, so eating well is a low-cost luxury that my partner makes sure is a priority for us. My mother-in-law Ann lives in Front Royal, so she and her husband have also been a tremendous help through the whole process.  To test out my idea, I hosted the first incarnation of Gathered as an Open Studio at our home.

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Q. While you aren’t running the shop, designing and making jewelry, what could we find you doing?
Eating chocolate! Drew and I also run a raw herbal chocolate business called Immortal Mountain chocolates from our inspected home kitchen (www.immortalmountain.com and facebook.com/Immortal-Mountain). We sell it online and at Gathered, Better Thymes Natural Foods, Happy Creek Coffee & Tea, and Heritage Hollow Farm Store. I also do what I can to help Drew with our forage garden (usually assisting with harvesting, drying, and preserving), and I LOVE hiking. Good thing we live in the mountains!

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Q. What are your future goals?

I plan on taking Gathered as far as I can, at the very least to a point where it is sustaining us as a family. I opened in April 2013 and already I’ve had such a positive, welcoming response from locals and travelers alike that I am so grateful for. I’m excited to say that I’ve gone from supporting about ten artists in the beginning to more than seventy now, the vast majority of which are local, or at least Virginia makers. Drew and I are also discussing expanding Immortal Mountain to include herbal tinctures from our land, as well as dried herbs and plant starts (all of which will be available at Gathered in the future…) And I’m of course going to continue with my beadwork. I don’t think it’s possible for me to have just one single focus in life. There’s too much to explore!

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Q. Where can we follow you?

www.gatheredshop.com,

facebook.com/GatheredShop

on Instagram as gatheredshop.

I also have a personal Instagram account as cadynspeziale where I post photos of my own work and inspiration I come across

 etsy.com/shop/cadynspeziale 

and a sporadically-tended blog lifeembellished.blogspot.com.

Flo turned 90//Hart’s Desire Event Photographer

 

This woman. My Great-Aunt Flo.  I grew up calling her Flo-Flo. She turned 90 over the summer.  I was honored to photograph her big party.

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Happy Birthday Flo Flo!

The Broadhead Family

Repeat clients. They are the best.  We decided to do part of this session at Glen Manor Vineyards in Browntown, VA.  I can’t wait to go back to do a tasting. The views are to.die.for.

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The grapes are on top of that open field, just above the sun shade in this picture:

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This family. These boys. Both had recent birthdays.

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This image is such a great representation of this time in their lives. Running in opposite directions.

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Airynee + Chris |Hart’s Desire Engagement Photography| Upperville, VA Couples Photographer

If you follow me on Facebook then you’ve seen these two blow up your time lines.  They were amazing to work with.  Their chosen location, Ayrshire Farm was a photographers dream. I could shoot there every day.  The location was appropriate as it was where they first met.  I can’t wait for their September wedding!

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Amy + Steve Engaged | Hart’s Desire Couples Photographer

Congratulations to the new couple and the new family they have created together.

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