Last December, instead of making resolutions or checklists for the new year, I picked three words to embody in 2014: intentional, joyful, and awesome. Although I had my capricious moments (and my impulse purchases) and my sad moments (and angry moments), I can say with confidence that 2014 was certainly full of awesome! In fact, my favorite moments of the year weren't just when things were awesome--they were when things were redefined, boundaries were pushed, and risks were taken. Essentially, the most exhilarating parts of my year were when I was brave enough to imagine and suggest things that were a little...weird. And I'm into that.

My three favorite outside-the-box moments of 2014:

1. Working with couples who are not afraid of getting down with nature or other weirdness. Specifically, Hannah and Rob's wedding day portraits leaping over rivers...

...Jayleen and Crystal's engagement session in the James River...

...and Maureen and Nathaniel's wedding day portraits in a graveyard and a pile of leaves.

2. Shooting tiny, simple, private ceremonies that redefine what a "wedding" can and should be. This year that ranged from Sophia and Colin's ceremony at the Poe Museum... Ben and Maria's City Hall ceremony in Manhattan... Barry and Monica's ceremony at Chimborazo Park.

3. Capturing the beauty of adapting, mixing, and subverting traditions in the loveliest of ways. The two that stand out from this year are Robbie and Amanda's surprise wedding/housewarming party...

...and Yen and Scott's Vietnamese and Jewish double party celebration!

2015: Brave, Bold, and Focused (but Fun!)

So given that the times I felt most alive in 2014 was when things were a little off the beaten path, this year my inspiration words will be brave, bold, and focused (but fun)! This means that I'm going to push myself to go outside my comfort zone and not shy away from making suggestions for poses, settings, or experiences that might seem a little too zany. It means that I'm going to embrace and explore my personal photography style and be okay with standing out. And it means I'm going to stay focused on my work, my life, and my goals -- not compare myself to other photographers (a real toughie for me) -- but not get too serious or bogged down. 

Just putting this post together has me energized and excited! What are your three words for 2015?