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Filtering by Tag: Elena Wilken Photography

A time to give thanks

elena wilken

“Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.”

 Brian Tracy

It has been a very rainy last few weeks, and I was more than happy to see the sun up, shining in the skies, this past Saturday.
I quickly penciled back in one of the sessions I've been having to postpone because of the combination of my limited shooting schedule and the rainy, dreary weather that we've been having on the weekends. The two senior girls were more than happy to meet with me even with the short notice. The location was great, we were going to try a few new things... and did I mention the weather took a turn for the best, against all the weather forecasts and that the light was beautiful? ;)
Long story short, we got together and as I was getting prepared to take a few test shots my faithful camera decided it would not work anymore. The mirror got stuck in the up position and shut off power, while the curtains in the lens got stuck half way opened. After a LOT of tinkering with it, it came back to life, just to start the whole cycle all over again as soon as I would try taking a picture. To be honest, I am pretty disapointed, but it is probably something that I could expect after 50,000+ images taken in a year and a half.

I am not going to be taking a whole lot of pictures in the next several weeks, while I am waiting on my camera to be repaired, or until the new one comes. It is probably time to go back and start posting a few of the many images that sit dormant on the backups.

I can't say I am thankful that the camera broke, but for some reason I have a strong feeling that there is more to it than what meets the eye. We'll see :)
Meantime, I enjoy spending more time with my family and bringing to life a project that's been in the concept stage for months now - EW Couture Collection. I'm excited to unveil within the month, what that is all about. Speaking about new adventures I am so excited to start working with a dear friend and awesome photographer rep starting next year. Excited and humbled.   


Beyond getting a better understanding of what the day meant historically, Thanksgiving Day and the celebration of Thanksgiving took new meanings for me after I came to America.

I am thankful everyday for the freedom and the possibilities God opened for me and all the gifts I have been given. 
It is easy to take for granted things that are available to me and not missing, day in and day out. It is so easy to forget that I have it good.

The gift of life, the gift of hope, the gift of having drinking water at my fingertips, the gift of choice about what I want to eat for breakfast, lunch and/or dinner or for a snack for that matter.
The gift of a shelter over my head, with the luxury of indoor plumbing and heat.
The gift of not having to fear for my life or my families' safety because of war.
The gift of having a job that I enjoy, the gift of being valued and respected by my employer, the gift of having the option to follow my dreams and work at making them become reality.
... All these gifts and many others I consider a given and take for granted more often than not.
I pray that I am reminded everyday to be thankful for small and big things alike. Everyday is a good day and time to give thanks.

After the gift of life I am most thankful for my family - my dear Paul and our little munchikan :)

What are some of the things and gifts that you are thankful for?


A step back in time :: my first couple session :: Elena Wilken :: Portland Or. Photographer

elena wilken

Well, this post is a step back in time, in a couple of ways. This was my first couple session, at the beginning of this year. Such a fun session! And I had even more fun in the post processing. I haven't done a lot of textures and vintage up to that point (and since then, for that matter. To be honest I don't know what keeps me back, because I truly love it... maybe just the thought of what I think customers would expect from me and what sells. But they expect whatever they see you produce, in the first place. Well, this is a whole another story and post in itself...).

There are a couple of vendors out there that I really love, who create awesome tools for photographers. And Nichole V is one of them. Check out her beautiful photography. If you are a photographer, I guarantee you'll love her awesome textures (I used some of them in the post processing of these images) and actions. What I love about her stuff is that is does not put you in a box. All her actions give you a start in the post processing and give you free reign in the creative process. You are able to tweak the different adjustment layers to your liking while starting with a very solid base.

These images made me think so much of old times, with hand color tinted black and white photos and rock solid, "I'm here for you forever" kind of love :) With a bit of an urban flavor, here's a step back in time...

Keep your eyes on the blog. As I am planning to work more with couples over the next year, I would like to kick start the year with a few personal concept sessions. I will be posting more details about a call for models over the next month and a half.

Thank you for stopping by and have an awesome week! :)

I need help finding a chair - "the perfect chair"

elena wilken

I've been looking for a little while now for a fun chair to use as a prop for my photo shoots. I've got the perfect locations to use it in. I just need to find it. Apparently I haven't been looking hard enough.

That's where I need your help. I haven't been able to put enough time into the hunt, between putting a great amount of time into building the photography business, being a full time graphic designer, a full time mom of a two year old and a wife (listed in no particular order :). 

Some of you love to look for stuff and come across cool finds or know people that love to look for stuff and/or always come across the right thing at the right time.

Well, here is what I'm looking for - a victorian style chair or even a little sofa. No, it does not need to be in great condition. I'm going for the vintage look - victorian, but vintage. A mossy green, purple, burgundy, red, blue, chocolate brown, or even a mustard colored one would make my day :)
I'll post a few pictures I came across on google (and links to the pages where I got them from, for credit) to give you a better idea of what I have in mind. I am not trying to get a new one, so do keep that in mind when you come across chairs listed at a few hundred or thousands of dollars ;) I might be interested in those in a couple of years when the studio is up and running, but for now I am looking for something that I can haul around and have in different outdoor settings. 

What's in it for you? A fun (free) portrait photo session, the printed set of all the proofs from the session (20-25 5x7 prints) and three digital files of your choice, from the session. That's if I buy the chair you find. It is a hunt definitely worth your time ;) You can tell I have my heart set on one.

Over the last few months I've seen several fellow photographers come across great finds, comparable to the images posted, and get them for anywhere from free to $40 (estate sales and Craigslist). So I know that those rare gems are out there. It just takes the right person to find them. And maybe you are the right person. Unless you see me posting pictures of it know that I am still on the lookout and keep hunting :)

Thank you for spreading the word about this. You have my gratitude.
E-mail me if you have any more questions, or you think you found what I'm looking for.

Soiree Sisters Events :: Wedding Flowers

elena wilken

If you are familiar with my posts, you might remember one other event I documented for these ladies (posted on the old blog). Their work is beautiful!

This is probably one of my most favorite boutonniere ever! So perfect in its simplicity. 


And here are a few images of the loose pieces before becoming a part of 'something bigger'. I love the delicate and soft colors of the roses and the soft boldness of the gladiolas.

... On a different note, Thanksgiving is just around the corner. You might have birthdays or anniversaries coming up, or you might simply want to enjoy a fresh festive arrangement for Christmas. Have the girls at Soiree Sister Events create for you a beautiful and unique flower arrangement or bouquet. Here is a link to Liz's personal blog.

Making Memories last for a lifetime :: Elena Wilken Photographer

elena wilken

Here are a few shots of some of the products that I'll be offering. The quality is exquisite.

The Flush mounted photo album comes in three different sizes - 6x6, 9x9 and 12x12. Printed on FUJI professional photo paper, matt coated and embossed, with 2 mm thick pages and a water proof image cover they are made to last.  

These images are provided by the supplier and are not my product shots. They are meant to help you visualize the quality of the products.

The keepsake boxes are custom handmade, come printed with your favorite image from the session on the outside and 18-20 matted prints which can be displayed in your home and switched out as you like.