Laura Rider Dutelle: Blog http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog en-us (C) Laura Rider Dutelle laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Sun, 20 Nov 2016 20:44:00 GMT Sun, 20 Nov 2016 20:44:00 GMT http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/img/s/v-5/u707233572-o862890590-50.jpg Laura Rider Dutelle: Blog http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog 80 120 Freckles Abroad: Scottish Highlands, Part I http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/11/freckles-abroad-scottish-highlands-part-i After a pretty train ride through meadows of sheep and cute wee towns, we arrived in the city of Inverness. There, we hired an incredibly awesome French sports car (nicknamed "Phillippe") and cruised deeper into the Highlands. We navigated LOTS of roundabouts (still on the wrong side of the road) and narrow roads, driving through incredibly green, vast countryside and the Glen Shiel mountains. Below are "drive-bys," as I call them. The fog was heavy and it was a rainy day, but I didn't mind. Highlands, here we come!

Glen Shiel, ScotlandGlen Shiel, Scotland

Glen Shiel, ScotlandGlen Shiel, Scotland Glen Shiel, ScotlandGlen Shiel, Scotland Glen Shiel, ScotlandGlen Shiel, Scotland

As we wound through the hills, we finally arrived at the teeny tiny town of Dornie, best known for being home to Eilean Donan Castle. Dornie is a small, former fishing village, located in the western Ross-shire Highlands where the lochs (lakes) Duich, Alsh and Long meet. I loved the little harbor scenes all over, with deep emerald green mountains, trickling waterfalls, dramatic gray skies, old tugboats and stark white crofts/houses dotting the shore. Such a majestic spot!

Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland I was beyond excited to find out that Eilean Donan Castle was a 4-minute drive from our bed and breakfast. Even in spitting rain and gray skies, it was still too good to be true.

Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland

Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland
The view across the loch from our room at the b&b.
Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland
Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland Just at the end of the lane from our b&b sat an old boat named Girl Beth. A beaut!
Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland We ventured out in the pouring rain for dinner in Dornie and found one restaurant -- The Clachan. Fresh seafood and yummy burgers hit the spot. After dinner, the rain let up a bit and we checked on the castle again after it was closed to visitors. Took a few shots from across the loch.

Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Driving home for the night, the sun battled the clouds for a short break.
Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland Dornie, ScotlandDornie, Scotland
The next morning we ate breakfast, checked out and said our goodbyes to Eilean Donan before heading to the Isle of Skye for a few days. It hadn't opened to visitors yet and skies were (somewhat) blue, so I was in heaven.
Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland Eilean Donan Castle, Dornie, ScotlandEilean Donan Castle, Dornie, Scotland
And so we headed to the Isle of Skye, a place I'd dreamed about and never thought I would ever get to see. As we crossed the Skye bridge the landscape became wilder, more remote, even more stunning and extreme in both weather and beauty. These were the highlands I'd hoped to see!
Isle of SkyeIsle of Skye SligachanSligachan
We stopped at Sligachan, a small settlement with a gorgeous 1830s hotel nearby and views of the Cuillin mountains.

SligachanSligachan SligachanSligachan
We arrived at the Trotternish Peninsula--way up on the northeastern coast of Skye--on a super rainy, blustery, stormy day.
We happily tucked into our bed and breakfast to ride out the rain, and enjoyed a yummy late lunch there before checkin. I'll say it -- we had THE BEST lunch of our lives -- Highland beef and mac and cheese pies. Tasted even better than they looked.
Our room looked out onto the backyard and a garden. These two kids had tried to make a run for it and jumped their fence, baa-ing right next to our window. We didn't mind ... when does that ever happen?
Trotternish Peninsula, Isle of SkyeTrotternish Peninsula, Isle of Skye
Taking advantage of less rain (it was still raining but not as heavy), we ventured out to discover our surroundings. A quick drive North and we found Kilt Rock. My husband held onto me as I leaned over the cliff fencing to get these shots. Good thing, because the wind was insane!
Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye
There are no words to describe the rich, vibrant colors ... and no way to do them justice!
Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye
Back on the highway, we headed past tiny wee villages towards the bigger town of Portree for dinner.

Trotternish Peninsula, Isle of SkyeTrotternish Peninsula, Isle of Skye
Portree is a picturesque town popular with tourists for its restaurants, views and colorful buildings set beside the bay. Ate an amazing dinner here before tucking back into our quiet b&b further north, away from the crowds.

Portree, Isle of SkyePortree, Isle of Skye
Woke up to a blue sky day -- a rarity on Skye, we'd heard! Making the most of it, we ate an early breakfast and headed back to Kilt Rock. So glad we did! Mealt Falls crashed into waters the color of beach glass as the sun lit up the cliffs.

Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye Kilt Rock, Isle of SkyeKilt Rock, Isle of Skye
I love that the wild skies always look ready for a downpour at a moment's notice. Taking advantage of a no-rain scenario, we drove a few minutes further north along a narrow, single-track lane (i.e.: if another car is coming your way, you play chicken until one of you spots a turnout or "passing place" to slide into). Makes driving exciting.
The Quiraing is a landslip on the Trotternish Peninsula made up of pinnacles and dramatic crags, tons of sheep and hiking trails. Even in wind and random rainclouds it was hauntingly beautiful. Those white dots are sheep. Tons of them in the Quiraing!

Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Passenger-side view of our drive. Something out of a Saturn commercial.
Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye
My husband got a shot of me nerding out on the hilltop with a ram. I nicknamed this guy Neighborhood Watch.
I think he found the best possible place to snack in all of Scotland. These views! Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye
Quiraing, Isle of SkyeQuiraing, Isle of Skye On my Scotland bucket list was to see a Highland cow, or 'hairy coo' as they're called. Heading back to our b&b for the night, I checked it off the list. They are the teddy bears of farm animals, if you ask me. I was basically on 'Coo Watch' our entire time on Skye.


The quiet, wild drive down isolated roads back to our b&b for the night. Very little traffic, some of it four-legged.
The sun sets very late in the summer on Skye, and we were treated to beautiful skies even at 9 p.m.


Per usual, I took far too many photos to show in one blog. Our final day on Skye is coming next -- Fairy Pools, boats, mountains and more as we leave Skye for Oban!

Happy trails,

Laura

Click here to view more Scotland photos and purchase a print.

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Britain Europe Highlands Scotland UK castles cliffs mountains travel village water waterfalls http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/11/freckles-abroad-scottish-highlands-part-i Sun, 20 Nov 2016 20:34:41 GMT
Summer Wedding in the PNW http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/9/summer-wedding-in-the-pnw I've known Emily and Josh since their sophomore years at WSU Vancouver, around the time they first started dating. I'd taken their photos at various events or activities on campus during their college years and we had become friends. I was beyond excited and honored when they asked me to shoot their wedding! So, on a gorgeous(ly hot) 103 degree day in August, I drove up to a beautiful farm in La Center, Washington to capture their special day.

One thing I love about Emily and Josh is their sass and goofiness. Having known them for years, we are totally comfortable around each other and freak flags can fly freely. No awkward moments between these two, only laughs and lots of love. Turns out their friends are also hilarious, so the day was super entertaining start to finish. Starting with the bridesmaids ... These bridesmaids (and bridesman) had one photo request: to reenact the "Bridesmaids" movie poster. I'd say they did a pretty good job.

The morning of the wedding, Emily got a special delivery from her groom: some sweet custom Vans. These two are big Disney fans, can you tell?

Now this. Is a ring.

That moment when you put on the dress and you know you look good.

Proud parents get me every time. Here's the bride and her mom, followed by her new mother-in-law.

The bride's coach (aka: Dad's vintage car) that will get her to the altar on time.
Getting ready for the first look before the ceremony, I walked the groom in place, made him hang out by a koi pond (in the shade, again it was 103F!) and sent his bride in to say hello.
First Look nervousness out of the way, the sass returned. These two!
Here's a look at some of their bridal portraits. We chased beautiful light and shade, anywhere we could find it!
Pre-ceremony, it was time to gather the troops and use the light. Lots of beautiful people to fit in one frame (and around a small koi pond), but we did it!

Gorgeous bridesmaids -- I loved these colors!

The groomsmen were so, so ready for their turn. We did the nice, smiley, formal portraits of each with the groom, but they each took a turn creating their own poses. Thanks for making my job fun!

Niece-bonding before the aisle walk. Father of the bride, getting his boutonniere fixed on.

Again, proud parents make me cry---every time.

The new little family on a very big day.

Josh anxiously awaits Emily's arrival the the end of the aisle.

It's official!

This wedding party knows how to make an exit.

Signing on the dotted line ... Getting in a good sister hug afterwards. They're the best! A horse arena transforms into a reception hall with fairy lights and candles.

The thing is: if you're dressed like a princess, little girls might mistake you for one, gather round, ask questions and want hugs. It happens.

First dance ... Toasts by candlelight and the evening closes in ... All in all it was a beautiful wedding and even the extreme heat couldn't touch that. Congratulations to my friends Emily and Josh, may you live a happy, healthy life and laugh everyday!

Cheers,
Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) ceremony couple farm farm wedding garden love pond summer wedding http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/9/summer-wedding-in-the-pnw Sun, 11 Sep 2016 22:40:05 GMT
Freckles Abroad: Glenlivet, Scotland http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/8/freckles-abroad-glenlivet-scotland Though sad to part ways with St Andrews, we were pumped for the next leg of our journey -- the Speyside region of Scotland, also known as "The Land of Whisky." After a bus ride to a train ride, another train to a rental car, we drove (on the other side of the road) a short distance to the sweet, sleepy little town of Aberlour. Our home for the next two nights was a whisky bar with guest rooms above called The Mash Tun. When tasting Scotland's finest whiskies day and night, it's most convenient to simply walk upstairs to sleep.

Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland We snuck in a late lunch with a couple of whiskies before heading on a walk about town. Aberlour is home to many distilleries, including Macallan Estate and Aberlour, and within a short drive to hundreds more. Saving our favorite distillery for the following day, we explored the cute town and enjoyed a slow pace.
Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland After an incredible dinner (and tastes of Tamdhu 8 yr, Knockando 12 yr, Glencadam 10yr, Dalwhinnie 15yr) at our home whisky bar, we rested up for a fun day ahead. A brief rain gave way to a beautiful rainbow to a stunning double rainbow, as seen from our bathroom window.
Aberlour, ScotlandAberlour, Scotland

The next morning, we enjoyed an incredibly yummy breakfast downstairs in the whisky bar (instantly transformed into a homey cafe) and planned out the day. Castles first, then whisky!
My husband expertly drove us to the gates of Ballindalloch Castle, the family home of the Macpherson Grants since 1546. There we met the most enthusiastic, funny, awesome gatekeeper, Jeffrey, who informed us that we were the first guests of the day. Score! We drove the beautiful back road up to the castle and began exploring with the place to ourselves. The entrance to the castle grounds is through a winding, Secret Garden-esque, ivy-covered walkway that deserved a photo shoot of its own.
Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Since photos of the inside aren't allowed, I captured what I could of the outside before it started raining on us (which is a great time to go inside a castle).
Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland

I couldn't be mad at the rainclouds swarming in, because it added a little drama to this medieval scene.

Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland

Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland The castle's interior was stunning! I wish I'd been allowed to capture it. But the grounds are something else, and we spent more time exploring those than the inside of the estate. During a particularly rainy spell, we ducked into the cafe gift shop and enjoyed some Earl Gray and the most decadent chocolate cake I'd ever smashed in 30 seconds.

Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland My husband and I went for a partly rainy, partly sunny walk to the walled garden, him wearing a new Scottish tweed hat he found in the gift shop. The gardens were worth the wet walk.
Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland

Doorways upon doorways, asking to be explored. Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland

Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland

We walked a ways outside the garden wall and found the most adorable greenhouse, adjacent to the castle gardener's cottage. Magical!

Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland Ballindalloch Castle, ScotlandBallindalloch Castle, Scotland After we got a good fill of gardens, we walked to the opposite end of the castle grounds along the River Spey. In the rain, but who cares?
Getting to see the River Spey was a dream come true for me, and a highlight of our trip. As a flyfisherwoman who loves to spey cast, being where this type of cast began in the mid 1800s was thrilling. My grandfather fished the River Spey long ago, and I liked to think he was there with me as I walked its banks.

Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland

A speycaster enjoying a good run and an even better view on the River Spey.

Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland While important for the salmon industry in Scotland, the River Spey also fuels the whisky production in the area. The Speyside distilleries produce more whisky than any other region in Scotland. Ready for a nip, we trekked back to the car, said hello to the sassy llama below and ventured on to our next stop: The Glenlivet Distillery. Ballachullish, ScotlandBallachullish, Scotland

The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland We were just in time for a tour led by the incredibly studied and genial David, who taught us that really good whisky is a lot of work. I forget the rest. Here are photos.
The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland After the amazing tour, we got to sample a taste of one of three whiskies. I tried the 12 and Steve went for The Glenlivet 18. Then, since we were there (why not?) my husband tried the 1983, a whisky bottled the year his wife was born. And it was gooooood.

The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland We closed out our whisky tour in the gift shop, which had the most gorgeous whisky bottle chandelier I'd never seen. A work of art!
The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland The Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, ScotlandThe Glenlivet Distillery, Glenlivet, Scotland And yes, we picked up some small little baby whiskies for our last night in town. Because why not?

In what was a perfect two days of castle cooing, garden wandering, whisky drinking and relaxing, we bid adieu to Aberlour and the Glenlivet area. Headed to the Highlands next!

But before I go: Shoutout to the marvelous, wonderfully sweet, incredibly patient servers and bartenders at The Mash Tun. Your hospitality was outstanding and you made for an unforgettable trip to Aberlour. We'll be back!

-Laura

Click here to view more Scotland photos and purchase a print.

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) castles exploring garden pathways scotland speyside travel whisky http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/8/freckles-abroad-glenlivet-scotland Wed, 24 Aug 2016 03:41:43 GMT
Freckles Abroad: St Andrews, Scotland http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/8/freckles-abroad-scotland My husband is an avid golfer. When planning our Scotland adventure, St Andrews—also known as “The Home of Golf”—was a sure stop on our trip. We caught the train from Edinburgh to Leuchars, then a bus from Leuchars to St Andrews. Excitement (and paranoia at the thought of missing our stop) led us to hop off the bus early and take the long, rainy, scenic walk along the Old Course to our bed and breakfast. Our wonderful hosts at the Cameron Guest House let us check in hours early, shed our 50 lb framepacks and relax in our quintessential Scottish tartan room. Knowing it was a honeymoon, they’d even left us a bottle of champagne (which we cracked before lunch … what??).

Making use of a sun break, we walked a few blocks down the street to St Andrews Castle, a 12th century beauty. This site used to be a bishops; residence, fortress and state prison during its 450-year run. Only a shell of what it once was, it has the best views in town perched on a cliff along the North Sea.

St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle View from St. Andrews CastleView from St. Andrews Castle Of all the castles we saw on our trip, this was our favorite to explore – features left as-is so that you really feel transported back in time. We climbed down (yikes!) into a cold, dark mine beneath the castle and got a taste of medieval warfare, and peered into a bottle dungeon where prisoners were kept. Beyond the stunning views, it was a fun journey back in time. St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle St. Andrews CastleSt. Andrews Castle

Mine below St Andrews CastleMine below St Andrews Castle Mine below St Andrews CastleMine below St Andrews Castle We then walked down the street to St Andrews Cathedral, St Rule’s Church and the most beautiful graveyard I’ve ever seen. With a bright, marbled sky and the threat of rain looming, we wandered around aimlessly, taking in stories written on tombstones.
St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral St Andrews Cathedral The next morning, we got ready and walked the few blocks to The Old Course, where golf began. Before our trip we did a little research and discovered that the Old Course is completely open to the public on Sundays, and you can get a guided walking tour of the course. Knowing we’d be in town over a weekend, I bought tickets ahead of time and we headed to the clubhouse. It was a gorgeous sunny—VERY windy day—and couldn’t have been better weather luck for a long walk.
The Old Course signThe Old Course sign The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St AndrewsThe Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St AndrewsThe Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews After lunch at a local golfer’s pub (where all the Masters’ and Open winners hang), we checked out the University of St Andrews. A stunning, super romantic campus of old halls, nooks and crannies and lovely gardens. Easy to see how Wills and Kate fell in love here. Made me miss my alma mater!
Peek into courtyard, University of St AndrewsPeek into courtyard, University of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews University of St AndrewsUniversity of St Andrews After a nap and some dinner, we took a sunset walk (sunsets in Scotland during the summer happen around 10-11 p.m.!) along the West Sands beach, where the opening scene of “Chariots of Fire” was filmed. Situated right next to the Old Course, we did a ceremonious last walk of the course and headed towards home.
West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews West Sands Beach, St AndrewsWest Sands Beach, St Andrews Sunset on the West Sands Beach, St AndrewsSunset on the West Sands Beach, St Andrews Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Old Course, St Andrews LinksOld Course, St Andrews Links Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews

This town is so gorgeous, there's beauty on every block. Curb appeal is no joke here.

Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews Street scene, St AndrewsStreet scene, St Andrews With lingering light and nothing to do, we returned to St Andrews Castle for late sunset shots. I stood on a bench, on my tip-toes to try and get a good shot of the castle ruins.

Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Beach sunset, St AndrewsBeach sunset, St Andrews Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins A woman exited the house behind the castle, glass of wine and newspaper in hand, and sat at the neighboring bench. She asked where we were visiting from and we started talking. I asked her where the best place in town to photograph the castle was, and she invited us up to her bedroom, across the street! Knowing I was a photographer and it was our honeymoon, she welcomed us into her beautiful Scottish home, gave us a glass of wine each, introduced us to her family and showed us where—indeed—the best castle views were. Overcome by the generosity and warm welcome, our host assured us it’d make for a good story (and hopefully good photos) down the road. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU, Kimberly! These are for you. Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins Sunset over St Andrews Castle ruinsSunset over St Andrews Castle ruins

St Andrews was unforgettable and we can’t wait to return!

Next stop, Aberlour and Glenlivet (aka: whisky, castles and spey fishing). To be continued!

Visit my Scotland album to view more and purchase a print.

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) beach castles golf history old course scotland st andrews sunset http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/8/freckles-abroad-scotland Tue, 09 Aug 2016 14:12:56 GMT
Freckles Abroad: Scotland http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/7/freckles-abroad-scotland I recently returned from two weeks in Scotland on my honeymoon. With 3,000 photos to go through, I decided to take it city by city--starting with Edinburgh.

We landed in Edinburgh and, after locating our guest house, took naps to bounce back before hitting the city. We wandered the beautiful, historic streets and--after walking down a narrow staircase alleyway, called a 'close'-- we found the TEENY tiny pub I'd had my eye on. Perfect spot to relax and sip whisky. Shoutout to our new friends Murray (pronounced "Molly," as far as we knew) and Welshy, who sponsored our first whiskies. Thanks, guys!

The Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, ScotlandThe Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland The Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, ScotlandThe Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland
With its tiny nooks and crannies, warm, welcoming Scots and great whisky, the Halfway House proved an incredible kickoff to our Scotland trip. The Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, ScotlandThe Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland The Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, ScotlandThe Halfway House Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland
After two hours of chatting with our new Scottish mates, we wandered the streets, ate dinner and soaked in the history-meets-modern-city vibe.

John Knox House, EdinburghJohn Knox House, Edinburgh
So many intriguing alleyways, stairwells and architecture in Edinburgh. Street scene, EdinburghStreet scene, Edinburgh Street scene, EdinburghStreet scene, Edinburgh

After a great night's sleep, we headed straight for the Royal Mile (the main historic road in town). We found probably THE coolest street performer/artist I have ever seen -- a wizard who appears to be levitating. Moved so slowly we thought he was a statue. This guy was magical.

Wizard street performerWizard street performerEdinburgh, Scotland Wizard street performerWizard street performerEdinburgh, Scotland

Wizard street performerWizard street performerEdinburgh, Scotland
The streets are full of life, gorgeous architecture and so much history. I got snap happy along the way, to say the least.

Street scene, EdinburghStreet scene, Edinburgh Street scene, EdinburghStreet scene, Edinburgh Street Scene, EdinburghStreet Scene, Edinburgh Street Scene, EdinburghStreet Scene, Edinburgh

It was a bluebird weekend for the most part. BUT, knowing we were in Scotland and the weather's unpredictable, we were rain-ready. One of our rain-ready moves? Get out of it by ducking into a building.

We were in luck. St Giles' Cathedral was both open and beautiful. I got a photo permit and snapped away. A young men's choir was practicing, which made for an even more beautiful experience.

St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland

I was in stained glass window heaven.

St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland


I loved how the light from this stained glass window cast upon the neighboring green chairs and wall.

St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland


Tucked in alcoves were two memorial marble tombs. This one caught my eye, thanks to a little note attached to a plaid lanyard. Such a nice saying.

St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland St. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, ScotlandSt. Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland

Once the rain stopped, we reentered society, found a pub and enjoyed a late lunch of soup, bread and whisky. Energy back, we hit the 'Mile and made moves.

Street scene, EdinburghStreet scene, Edinburgh

Above: The Governors House is all that remains of Calton Gaol, once the largest prison in Scotland. Those prisoners sure had a nice view.

Since crowds are not our thing, we skipped Edinburgh Castle and instead hiked up to Calton Hill, a beautiful monument that overlooks the city. Great views of just about everything.

Aerial view of EdinburghAerial view of Edinburgh Calton HillCalton HillMonument overlooking the city of Edinburgh Calton HillCalton HillMonument overlooking the city of Edinburgh

Arthur's Seat, the main peak in the mountains of Edinburgh formed by an extinct volcano system roughly 350 million years ago. Another great spot for panoramic city views (should you feel like a hike or climb). Those ants on the summit seemed to enjoy it.

Arthur's SeatArthur's SeatHilltop overlooking the city of Edinburgh

The Scottish National Monument, a memorial tribute to the Scottish soldiers and sailors who perished in the Napoleonic Wars.

The Palace of Holyroodhoose is the Queen's residence while she is in town--which she was during our visit! Holyrood Palace (as it's also referred to) has been a home to the royal family since the 16th century.

Palace of HolyroodPalace of Holyrood

Feeling adventurous, we hiked up Nelson Monument, a commemorative tower built in 1807 to honor Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson, his victory over the French and Spanish fleets at the Battle of Trafalgar. The views were worth the narrow, tight staircase to climb it.

Nelson Monument, EdinburghNelson Monument, Edinburgh Nelson monumentNelson monumentEdinburgh, Scotland Nelson Monument stepsNelson Monument steps City skyline, EdinburghCity skyline, Edinburgh City skyline, EdinburghCity skyline, Edinburgh View of Edinburgh from the Nelson MonumentView of Edinburgh from the Nelson Monument

After a jam-packed day, we regrouped and met up with friends for dinner. En route to our second pub, we happened upon Greyfriar's Bobby, a famous Skye terrier from the 19th century. His owner, John Gray, was a night watchman, and Bobby kept by his side during his rounds. Upon John's death of tuberculosis in 1858, this little fella spent 14 years faithfully guarding his master's grave. No matter the weather, Bobby stayed put. This statue (and the pub behind it) commemorate man's best friend. It's good luck to rub his nose, which we were sure to do.

Greyfriar's BobbyGreyfriar's Bobby

The next morning, we bid Edinburgh goodbye and hopped a train for the incredibly cute little town of St Andrews, aka "the home of golf." Cheers to the friends we reunited with, the new friends we made and the wonderfully welcoming people altogether. Edinburgh, you're well worth the visit!

To be continued; thanks for reading!
-Laura

Check out my Scotland album to view more photos and purchase a print.
 

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) UK culture edinburgh europe historical history pubs scotland travel http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/7/freckles-abroad-scotland Mon, 01 Aug 2016 00:44:33 GMT
Under the St. Johns Bridge http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/6/under-the-st-johns-bridge Portland isn't just the "City of Roses." Bridges are a Portland thing, too--and without them, it'd be a lot harder to hop from Washington to Oregon and back again. The Columbia and Willamette rivers weave through the city, and without these bridges we'd be up the creek.

I recently explored one of the more iconic bridges in Portland, the St. Johns Bridge. It's a gorgeous steel suspension bridge with two 408" Gothic towers that command attention. It's the tallest (and arguably) the most beautiful bridge in Portland.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

On a sunny, clear summer evening I set out beneath the bridge from Cathedral Park. It's a small neighborhood park with views of the Willamette River, rolling grass hills and stunning views of the underside of the bridge. There were a few families and couples picnicking below and lots of happy dogs. I generally love any place where dogs run happy and free.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

I feel like Renoir and Monet would have loved to tackle this one.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

The bridge supports are things of beauty. I could have sat underneath them with a good book for hours.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

 There's something very New York about this bridge. It reminds me of the urban "nooks and crannies" you can find in Manhattan, where you can stop and take a moment for yourself. Portland has lots of these, (St. Johns being the most New Yorky, in my opinion).

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

          The views from the middle of the bridge (on a clear day) are stunning. From my stance I could clearly see Mount Hood. I could also make out Mount St. Helens and (if I were taller), Mount Adams.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

As you cross the bridge, it looks as though you'll be dropped off into a dense forest ... Forest Park, that is. It's hauntingly beautiful. It's easy to see why the TV show "Grimm" is often filmed here.

I'll be returning on a foggy morning sometime, for sure.

St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon St. Johns BridgeSt. Johns BridgePortland, Oregon

Here's to you, St. Johns! Looking forward to our next hang. This time, on a cold, foggy morning to see how Gothic you can get.

Cheers,

Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Portland St. Johns Bridge architecture bridge pathway urban http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2016/6/under-the-st-johns-bridge Sat, 25 Jun 2016 15:55:17 GMT
Winter in New England http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/12/winter-in-new-england This is the first time I've not gone 'home' to New Hampshire for Christmas. I just got married and we're starting our own little family's traditions in the Pacific Northwest, which is really exciting. While I won't miss shoveling snow, I WILL miss being around family and all the fun winter activities that goes along with a winter in New England. In tribute to all the great holiday seasons I've spent in New Hampshire, here are some shots from my favorite winter destination.

New England winterscapeNew England winterscape

View of my family's neighbor's idyllic house, lit up with a fresh snow.
My favorite barn greets guests with a festive wreath.

The mini log cabin in the woods provides a nice shelter for a break from snowshoeing or crosscountry skiing.
This canoe won't see action until the coming spring.
There's nothing like snow-heavy trees and the silence of falling snow on a walk in the woods.

The snow makes for great frolicking and snow baths with your buddy.

Winter frolickWinter frolick Everything is covered in snow or frost (even the inside of the old farmhouse windows).
And when the sun sets (by 5 p.m.), the barn lights go on to guide you home.
Happy holidays!

Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) barn cabin family new england new hampshire paths snow winter woods http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/12/winter-in-new-england Sun, 13 Dec 2015 17:46:11 GMT
Fall Engagement Session http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/10/fall-engagement-session ‚ÄčEvery once in a while, I get bookings that are so much fun, I forget I'm working. Such was the case with Emily and Josh, a couple I've known for the last three years. This hilarious (and super attractive, very much in love) duo spent most of our session laughing (and making me laugh), which is any portrait photographer's dream, as it makes for great natural smiles. 

We met up at McMenamin's Edgefield on a sunny fall day. The weather and venue could not have been more beautiful. Edgefield is a 60+ acre 1800s 'poor farm' since restored to a microcosm of little bars, restaurants, a spa, hotel, movie theatre, concert venue,vineyard, brewery and golf course. This is a favorite spot for my husband and me, and where we burn through an entire day just enjoying all there is to do. Emily, Josh, their puppy, a bunch of balloons and I wandered the property for photo opps. Here's some favorites from our day.

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

Add in a bunch of brightly-colored balloons and we've got some fun, super cute photo opps.

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

These two! Gah, I love them!

Emily and Josh

The bride's new last name will be Wright, so it's only fitting that we incorporated this mug set given to Emily by a good friend. 

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

Meet Obie, the couple's new puppy. His mom and dad are getting married! Also, he was hungry.

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

"What?"

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

Gorgeous day to lay down a picnic basket in the leaves.

Emily and Josh Emily and Josh Emily and Josh

What I love most about Edgefield is all the nooks and crannies there are to take a seat, sneak a kiss, and just soak in the natural beauty and carefully-planned landscape design. LOVE this place!

Emily and Josh

To Emily and Josh -- Thanks for a fun day and for being such a hilarious (and equally photogenic) couple. Cannot wait to shoot your wedding day!

-Laura

 

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) couple engagement farm garden oregon outdoors portland wedding http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/10/fall-engagement-session Sat, 24 Oct 2015 19:24:00 GMT
Color + Light http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/9/colorful-fall-family I love the transition from summer to fall. When daylight fades sooner and there's a chill in the air. Makes chasing light on a photo shoot that much more urgent, especially when shooting in the woods!

I met up with a beautiful family in celebration of the couple's 25th wedding anniversary. A 25th wedding anniversary is a great excuse to get family photos taken, don't you think? They came dressed to the nines in gorgeous sarees (the ladies) and complementary shirts and ties (the gents). We battled hairdo-threatening wind gusts and quickly-fading light, but we pulled it off. Kudos to the family for smiling nonstop for over an hour, hiking from scenic location to scenic location and taking orders from me without complaint! They were awesome. Here's a look at our shoot--from individual family member portraits to group variations, we were all over the place!

Daughter and mother, both stunning! Sister and brother, artfully complementing each other (thanks to their mom!). The gents, looking so dapper. The light was right, so the daughter got her own modeling shoot. Why not? The matriarch of this family has a gorgeous smile (and a heart to match). ... and let's not forget how we got here. This couple has been married for 25 years. Kudos to them!

Happy anniversary to the couple, and thank you to the family for letting me capture your colors and light!
 

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) colors fall family pathways portraits sarees tradition trails woods http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/9/colorful-fall-family Fri, 04 Sep 2015 13:25:15 GMT
Wild Washington Beaches http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/7/wild-washington-beaches Life has been busy lately, but not busy enough to skip awesome adventure opportunities when they arise. My fiance and I spent the Fourth of July holiday weekend at my favorite place -- the Olympic Peninsula. We camped, hiked, checked out purty marine creatures at low tide, caught some stunner sunsets, flyfished (okay, I fished and he watched), cooked spaghetti and meatballs on a camp stove, and were lucky enough to spot a bald eagle (and its baby!) in its nest ON the Fourth. Washington is a pretty incredible place.

Our first full day on the OP, we spent the entire time on Ruby Beach. I've had decades of memories here. The first time, I was a fifteen-year-old on a five-week camping trip, hiking the Olympic coast and camping on its beaches. I saw Ruby Beach and thought I'd seen heaven. At 26, I started flying out from Boston to fish on the OP, always making Ruby a stop along the way. I celebrated my 30th birthday here with my Dad (who's since passed) on a father-daughter flyfishing trip. And now my fiance and I make the drive to make our own memories here. Here's an epic sunset we caught that first night.

Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset

Seastacks for days, creating a land-of-the-lost feel when the light changes.

Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset Ruby Beach at SunsetRuby Beach at Sunset

My favorite place to fish is a sweet spot where the river runs into the Pacific Ocean. You can hear the surf crash into the mouth of the river and you know fresh fish are on their way in. The water is a Caribbean-sage color, pelicans are aplenty, and sometimes--SOMEtimes--you can spot a bald eagle or a sea lion. Or both!

Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ... Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ... Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ...

After a half hour of casting and getting back into the swing, I caught a small sea run cutthroat. There aren't many photos in existence of me fishing. These next two photos were taken by my patient, talented fiance, Steve. He grabbed my camera and ran over at the right time!

Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ... Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ...

I love the color gradient on this stretch of water (designer/nerd speak).

Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ... Flyfishing in Olympic National ParkFlyfishing in Olympic National ParkWhere the river meets the ocean ...

Remember how I said we saw a bald eagle? Here's proof. Notice the baby in the nest at left!

Bald Eagle HomelifeBald Eagle Homelife Bald Eagle HomelifeBald Eagle Homelife

Also out fishing that day: a sea lion. A risky move, so close to Shark Week.

Next stop on our weekend was Rialto Beach. We arrived at a(n awesomely) foggy time.

The last morning, we woke up and hit Beach 4 at low tide. We were greeted with dense fog (which I love) and explored tidepools, discovering tons of sleepy, colorful marine animals. An amazing sight!
Foggy Rainforest TidepoolFoggy Rainforest Tidepool Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools

The bridge heading out is a work of art in itself. We didn't want to leave!

Foggy Rainforest TidepoolsFoggy Rainforest Tidepools

A lush green, green green pathway to walk us out.

Until next time, Olympic National Park! You're glorious.

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Olympic National Park Pacific Northwest Washington beach beaches coastline fishing rainforest tidepools http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/7/wild-washington-beaches Wed, 29 Jul 2015 02:21:41 GMT
Congrats, Grads! http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/5/congrats-grads I've had two great opportunities to photograph grads recently. Matt, a high school senior who's heading to Washington State University Vancouver this fall, and Bea, whose journey at WSU Vancouver just wrapped with a bachelor's degree in biology. Both of these grads had great personal style, positive energy and ear-to-ear smiles. Congrats to them!

senior portrait of Mattsenior portraits | Matt

Beyond being a stellar student, Matt's also a snowboarder and skateboarder. He brought his gear along and we had a ton of fun incorporating them into his photos. Mount Hood was kind enough to make a cameo for us, which was sweet.

senior portraits | Matt senior portraits | Matt senior portraits | Matt senior portraits | Matt senior portraits | Matt

The leaves were on POINT the day of our shoot last October.

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See you around campus this fall, Matt! Congratulations!

WSU Vancouver graduate

The lovely Bea on her graduation day from WSU Vancouver. This super smart lady picked up a bachelor's of science in biology and brought her family along to document her big day.

WSU Vancouver graduate WSU Vancouver graduate

A friend of Bea's decorated her cap for her. Go Cougs!

WSU Vancouver graduate

With her awesome, adorable family ...

WSU Vancouver graduate with her family WSU Vancouver graduate with her family

All the siblings together to celebrate their sister's achievement. Such a photogenic crew!

WSU Vancouver graduate with her family

With her proud mom ...

WSU Vancouver graduate with her family

And an obviously proud dad ...

WSU Vancouver graduate with her family WSU Vancouver graduate with her family

I LOVE seeing proud parents, gets me every time!


Congratulations to these amazing grads!
-Laura
 

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) college grads graduates portrait senior senior portraits http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/5/congrats-grads Sat, 23 May 2015 16:58:10 GMT
'Sunrise to Sunset' exhibit http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/4/sunrise-to-sunset-exhibit First and last light are my favorite times of the day for two favorite hobbies, fly fishing and photography. Sunrise offers a clean slate and a chance for renewal. Sunset ties a bow on the day and promises a new start tomorrow. I like beautiful, quiet spots where the population is small, the mountains are big and troubles seem insignificant, and I aim to capture an environment exactly as I saw and felt it in the moment. If I can look back at a photograph and smell the food, feel the chill in the air or hear the waves in the background, I am content.

Below are some of my photos currently on display at Washington State University Vancouver, in the Science and Engineering Building galleries now through the end of summer.

Sunrise barn, Southwest Washington"New Dawn, New Day," Ridgefield, Washington'Sunrise to Sunset' series cathedral, Italy, florence"Morning at the Duomo," Florence, Italy'Sunrise to Sunset' series cabin, hiking, outdoors, washington, park, mountain"Midmorning Hike to Mount Rainier," Ashford, Washington'Sunrise to Sunset' series windows, city. architecture, piazza, shadow"Windows to the Piazza," Florence, Italy'Sunrise to Sunset' series Southwest Washington, grist mill"Midday at the Grist Mill," Woodland, Washington'Sunrise to Sunset' series city staircase in Seattle"Late Afternoon Climb," Seattle, Washington'Sunrise to Sunset' series Tuscan vineyard at sunset"Sunset in the Vineyard," Monteriggione, Italy'Sunrise to Sunset' series castle at dusk"Castle at Dusk," Monteriggione, Italy'Sunrise to Sunset' series boats at sunset"Boats on the Columbia River at Sunset," Portland, Oregon'Sunrise to Sunset' series beach walk on the Oregon coast"Evening Stroll," Tillamook, Oregon'Sunrise to Sunset' series Here are some that fit the theme but didn't make the cut this time. There's only so much wall space!
Florence, Italy"Morning at the Piazza," Florence, Italy Siena, Italy windowscape"Curb Appeal," Siena, Italy Mount Adams"Morning View of Mount Adams," Ashford, Washington Bridge in Woodland, Washington"Late Day Sun at the Grist Mill," Woodland, Washington Creek in Woodland, Washington"Summer Creek Reprieve," Woodland, Washington Monteriggione, Italy"Cocktail Hour at the Castle," Monteriggione, Italy

If you see something you'd like, click on the image to purchase. And if you're local, stop by the gallery to check them out!

 

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) exhibit landscapes photography show http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/4/sunrise-to-sunset-exhibit Sat, 11 Apr 2015 17:36:48 GMT
View from the Office: Campus Photography http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/3/view-from-the-office-campus-photography I know I am lucky to work where I do. My office at Washington State University Vancouver is only steps from amazing views of Mount Hood, Mount St. Helens, and (on a clear day) Mount Adams. Located on 351 beautiful acres that was once a dairy farm, campus has six miles of running, biking and hiking trails that I can hit on my lunch break. All times of year, it is quintessential Pacific Northwest and gorgeous place to be. If only I could drag my huge Mac outside on sunny days!

One facet of my job at WSU Vancouver is photography. I'm the in-house graphic designer, but I also shoot events, campus beauty shots and photos to go in my print projects like the magazine and admissions recruitment materials. Again, I'm aware I'm lucky in that this place is my office and the subject matter is far from ugly. Here's a look at where I report Monday through Friday.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

Mount Hood at sunrise, view from the outdoor amphitheater.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Autumn path, Vancouver, WashingtonAutumn path, Vancouver, Washington

Two stops along the campus "Cougar Trails," a bridge over a winding creek and an interpretive, woodsy PNW trail through old growth.

Mystic woodsMystic woods Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University Vancouver, Vancouver, WAWashington State University Vancouver, Vancouver, WA

Early mornings are my favorite time here.

Looking down at campus from the neighborhood above.

One of my favorite things about the Pacific Northwest: the way the clouds hang below the massive evergreens.

Mount Hood from the sports fields.

Mt. Hood at sunsetMt. Hood at sunset Mount HoodMount Hood Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

One parking lot offers an incredible view of Mount St. Helens as you enter campus.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

View of the Undergraduate Building from outside of the Library.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

The Library.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

Mount St. Helens on a frosty morning. I remember watching my Dad's VHS tape of the 1980 eruption (he was a Tacoma, WA native) and being in awe, having no idea where this active volcanic mountain was. Well, I get to see it every day!

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

That magical hour when the sun's on its way out and Mount Hood glows from the east.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

We don't get much snow here, so winter is different. We do, however, get some occasional cold, dry mornings where the whole place is covered in frost.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver
Ok, ok. SOMEtimes we'll get snow. And when that happens, campus stays open -- but the rest of the region shuts down. A Bostonian, this is pretty funny to me. Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

The beginning of December, a wreath goes up on the Multimedia Classroom Building. Look forward to it every year.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

Spring warmth on campus. 

Washington State University Vancouver campusWashington State University Vancouver campus Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

Trickling fall sunset behind the Dengerink Administration Building.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

Sometimes our mountain views look fake -- I guarantee you they're real! They still shock me on clear days.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

This massive tree once had two buddies next to him that were taken down to make room for this building. One lays beside the building, and the other was repurposed into a pretty cool art piece that hangs in the foyer.

Washington State University VancouverWashington State University Vancouver

One of the latest shots, from a chilly spring morning last week. Yes, I love it here!

Ok, gotta head to work.

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Mt hood campus campus photography mountains pacific northwest students trees university wsu http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/3/view-from-the-office-campus-photography Fri, 27 Mar 2015 14:37:57 GMT
Ode to the Oregon Coast http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/2/ode-to-the-oregon-coast I admit, when I want to head to the coast, I usually drive 4.5 hours north to the Olympic Peninsula to enjoy the wild beaches of Washington ... where there aren't many people and the fishing is top notch. However, there's another coast less than two hours from me that's a whole other experience: the Oregon coast. Cannon Beach and neighboring towns -- while also good for fishing, clamming and crabbing -- are more densely populated tourist locales that remind me of Cape Cod back home. 

One of my closest friends (and coworker) found out we had to burn a 'personal holiday' at work last summer before we lost it. So, we took a random Monday off at the end of July and booked it to Cannon Beach. We did a day hike to Crescent Beach and had the ENTIRE place to ourselves! There we found tons of massive, intact sand dollars, some tide pool activity, stunning waterfalls and a sweet view of Haystack Rock. 

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

If you've ever seen "Goonies," you'll recognize that seastack in the middle (below). It's a haven for seagulls, barnacles and starfish.

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

Our hike led us through a small lush forest with sneak peaks of our destination along the way, then an abrupt walk-on to the beach.

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

Maybe it's just me, but the tide kind of looks like a window blind.

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

The coast is also not to be missed during the rainy winter months (end of October through April). During a family visit last March, we braved the cold rain and headed to Cannon Beach just to show family the ocean. Though mostly cold and rainy, we lucked out with a much-welcomed break of sun and blue sky. We had about twenty minutes before a hailstorm attacked us, but it was enough to make the trip!

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, OregonBreak of blue sky before a hailstorm on Cannon Beach, Oregon.

Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon Closeup of life on Haystack Rock. Cannon Beach, OregonCannon Beach, Oregon

When summer wraps up, school starts and the crowds head home, the Oregon coastal town of Tillamook is a great spot to explore. It's a small, less touristy town with miles and miles of beaches, great crabbing, beautiful views and killer sunsets. Here are some shots from last September, when we visited some friends at a beach rental.

Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon

It's a sweet spot to take a long walk with your love. Speaking of love, I love capturing couples being authentic like this one. 
Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon
I love the colors that saturate the beach as the sun goes down. I think the grapefruit shade is my favorite. The purple cast is awesome, too. Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon Tillamook, OregonTillamook, Oregon
If you haven't trekked to the coast, book it! Or, if a trip isn't in the cards but you want a piece of the coast on your walls at home, remember -- all my prints are on sale through the end of February. 

Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Oregon coast beach coast coastline couples hike ocean oregon sunset tillamook http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2015/2/ode-to-the-oregon-coast Sat, 14 Feb 2015 19:55:26 GMT
Cedar Creek Grist Mill http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/8/cedar-creek-grist-mill When I first moved to the Upper Left USA three years ago, I made a list of places to explore. A bucket list of suggestions from friends, gorgeous photos of places I'd seen in magazines and dreamt about, and sometimes random spots on the map. Today I checked off the Cedar Creek Grist Mill, a beautiful spot only 35 minutes from home in Woodland, Washington. The mill was built in 1876 and is the only grain grinding mill in the state that is powered by water, has maintained its original structural integrity and grinds with stones. Not only is the mill nice to look at, the creek and surrounding areas are perfect for a photog in need of quiet time.

Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington

If you take a walk across the bridge, there's a gorgeous stretch of water
with lots of lichen and moss-covered rock alongside -- perfect to plunk down for a while with a good book.
Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Best sound, especially when it's the only one around.
Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Here's a look at the only other folks I ran into during my stay.
Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington This old guy followed me around from rock to rock, and it made my day.
Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington The walk back didn't disappoint, either.
Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Cedar Creek Grist MillCedar Creek Grist MillWoodland, Washington Drove straight into the sunshine on my way home after a peaceful day.
Can't wait to come back and catch the fall colors!

-Laura
 

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Washington creek green grist mill mill pacific northwest river summer water http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/8/cedar-creek-grist-mill Mon, 04 Aug 2014 04:07:41 GMT
Mother's Day Fam Session http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/5/mothers-day-fam-session I recently shot family portraits for one of my dearest friends in the world. Her family is pretty awesome, so spending time with this crew is a bonus. We snuck this shoot in just before Mother's Day and her brother-in-law's college graduation. Keep in mind that spring in the Pacific Northwest can be a crapshoot -- our first attempt resulted in a torrential downpour, but two days later we were blessed with sun. Here's a peek at our sunny little evening.

Mama with her littlest.

Mama with her littlest

Sisters!
All the ladies together.
Dad with two of his three girls ... the youngest, meanwhile, running amuck for a bit.
The super cute parents
Brothers!
Brother-in-law/uncle, a new college graduate. Congrats, Nick!
Big sister
Her five-year-old sister helped me press the shutter on this one -- taken at her view on the stairs.
The middle sister, displaying all her teeth at once.
The little sister, doing a great job sitting still.
The sun sets on a lovely day with this fam. Love these guys!

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Washington children couple family mother spring http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/5/mothers-day-fam-session Thu, 15 May 2014 00:52:18 GMT
Ode to Dad and Mount Rainier http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/3/rainier       Mount Rainier has a special place in my heart. I've always loved the wild beauty of the Pacific Northwest, and easy access to mountains like Rainier was a huge factor in my decision to move here three years ago. I never want to take these wild spots for granted, and I'm bound to spend as much time as possible to enjoy them while I live within driving distance. 
     I bit the bullet last spring and bought myself an annual pass to Mt. Rainier National Park. It's a quick two-hour drive from where I live and perfect for a weekend warrior trip. My cousin Lindsay, our friend Becki and I love to bust out of work at five on Fridays and meet each other at the front gate of the park, giddy with woodswoman excitement for a weekend of day hikes and mosquito bites, burning our dinners (chicken fajitas) over a crackling campfire, long trail stories and mushroom-hunting. Now that we are THIS CLOSE to spring/summer hiking, we've got camping on the brain and are looking forward to more of these trips.
     Another reason I have a deep affinity for this mountain -- this park -- is because of my dad. He grew up outside of Seattle and spent a great deal of his time in the outdoors. He climbed Mt. Rainier twice and camped in some of the same spots I do today. While I grew up in Boston and am a New Englander at heart, I've always been drawn to the Pacific Northwest because of Dad's ties to it. Dad was excited I was exploring the Pacific Northwest and spending time hiking his old haunts, visiting me whenever he could. We talked last spring about doing a father-daughter trip here, hiking all 93 miles of the Wonderland Trail around Rainier.
     Dad was diagnosed with Stage III esophageal cancer in early June, and we decided to make the hike something to look forward to after his treatments. Four months in, he had a major surgery and was declared cancer-free. With hopeful hearts, we were starting to put trips on the calendar to look forward to. A couple months later and not recovering as he should, it was discovered that the cancer had recurred and had metastasized to his lungs. Seven months from diagnosis, my dad passed away. Someday, I will hike the Wonderland Trail for him.
     Which brings me back to these woodswomen weekends. On our last trip in September, my friend Becki and I discovered a stunning trail along Kautz Creek. A hearty day hike that, to our surprise, intersected with the Wonderland Trail. Not knowing how grave Dad's health would become, I was filled with excitement and sent him a photo of the trail -- telling him we'd get here next fall. It will have greater meaning (and even greater beauty) the next time I hike that trail.
     Here are some of my favorite views of my local national park.

Mount RainierMount Rainier Mount RainierMount Rainier Mount RainierMount Rainier

Switchbacks offer different views of the mountain and valleys surrounding, with occasional run-ins with critters enjoying the view, too.

The dayhike to Gobbler's Knob is steep and challenging, especially after a long hike preceeding to the trailhead -- and carrying 50+ lb framepacks. Advice? Strip down to a day pack.The views are absolutely worth it.

Mount Rainier from Gobblers KnobMount Rainier from Gobblers Knob

      Mt. Rainier woodswomen: Becki, Lindsay and Laura atop Gobbler's Knob.
Three woodswomen atop Gobbler's Knob: Becki, Lindsay and Laura.

The inland lakes surrounding Mt. Rainier are worth the hike. Translucent, pristine lakes that you want to run into (but probably shouldn't, since they're glacier-fed and freeeeeezing. Tempting though.).

Mount RainierMount Rainier Mount RainierMount Rainier Trees. The trees are varied, lovely and tall. Very, very tall. Some covered in moss and lichen, some with other trees growing ON them.
Hard not to be a treehugger when surrounded by so many beauties.
treehuggin'
Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park My favorite views can be found along Kautz Creek. This trail traverses through dense, moss-covered forest, along steep ridges and agonizing switchbacks to golden meadows with intermittent killer views of the mountain. Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Ducking out of the forest for a bit, the path walks along a steep ridgeline, offering a bonus view of Mount Adams.
Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park I LOVE seeing these -- they're called nurse logs. When a tree falls and starts to decay, new trees use it as soil and start to grow on top of it. Recycling at its best. Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Once you break out of the forest, it's clear views from here on.

Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park

All of a sudden, you emerge into a wide open meadow and see a log cabin that serves as a fire ranger station.
The whole thing is so gorgeous it looks fake.

Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park This is my absolute favorite. Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park

The fire ranger station was just as cool looking up close as it was from far away,
with lots of Wild West touches that made me consider moving in.
Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Now that's a front door. Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Great views from the backyard.
Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Mount Rainier National ParkMount Rainier National Park Spring is coming and I'll be back here again, with a heavier heart but even greater appreciation for this special place.
Here's a photo of my Dad hiking on Mt. Rainier back in 1971.
Dad on Mt. Rainier, 1971.Dad on Mt. Rainier, 1971.
We did get one last father/daughter hike together in August -- Rattlesnake Mountain above Squam Lakes in New Hampshire. Dad hadn't been here before and was feeling good. It was a beautiful day.

I'm thankful to my Dad for giving me my love of the outdoors and the Pacific Northwest. Life is short and I have more adventures to take, for him.
-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Mount Rainier Rainier backcountry camping dad hiking outdoors trips http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2014/3/rainier Sun, 09 Mar 2014 20:08:08 GMT
Senior Portraits Time! http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/10/senior-portraits-time I swear, when I was a senior in high school we didn't take our portraits until March -- well, the times they are a'changin'! Lots of schools are asking for them by the beginning of November. Which, in the Pacific Northwest, is a smart idea because we can make use of the sunshine before the rainy days are upon us. Yesterday was a beaut, and I met S. at the WSU Vancouver campus for a fun shoot in the sun. She was a trooper -- we walked all over campus chasing the sunlight. Here are some snaps.


What I love most about the Pacific Northwest are the TREES.
Always green, super tall and covered in moss. This place is green year-round and I love it.

Such a great day outside enjoying the season! If you've been waiting to update family photos or need a new headshot,
send me a note and book your session today. Happy fall!

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) autumn fall high school leaves portraits senior senior portraits http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/10/senior-portraits-time Mon, 21 Oct 2013 02:56:03 GMT
yogapower http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/9/yogapower I was just back in Boston visiting my family and got a chance to shoot at YogaPower Studio in Waltham, Mass, The super talented, incredibly beautiful and definitely bendy yoga instructors at YogaPower showed off their signature poses while I snapped away. If you haven't been to YogaPower Studio yet, check them out. Hot yoga at its finest! The space is calming, beautiful and natural light

Jess

Special thanks to all the yoga instructors who sweated it out so I could take photos. You all are so talented!
I can't even touch my toes. Guess I need to start taking yoga.

-Laura

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Boston athletes athletics yoga yogapower http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/9/yogapower Tue, 01 Oct 2013 05:34:20 GMT
Wedding in the Woods http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/8/wedding-in-the-woods I had the great honor of photographing Emily and Edward's wedding last weekend. The setting was one of my favorite little-known places in Portland; Leach Botanical Gardens, a stunning wooded wonderland tucked away in the Northeast corner of the city. The bride and groom--besides being awesome themselves--have equally awesome (and hilarious) friends and family, so this couldn't have been a more fun wedding to shoot. Here's a look at the day.

Inside the gates of the Leach Botanical Gardens is a beautiful old white farmhouse, a gorgeous outdoor patio tucked behind the house, lots of winding wooded paths that carry you off into the gardens and footbridges to connect them. Down one path and over a bridge there's a dreamy stone cottage that probably doesn't house dwarves, but looks like it should.

Very romantic Shakespearean setup on the back patio.

Ready to celebrate. The guests start to stream in through the garden gates.

I joined the ladies upstairs to check on their progress. Starting with mimosas.
And then on to hair and makeup!
Could Emily be any more beautiful than she already is? Incredibly, yes. Scroll down.
Three sisters getting ready in a small bathroom. Reminds me of growing up with my two sisters.
But today, no fighting over the mirror :)
Super glittery yet super comfortable.
Ethereal and beautiful.
Checking out her groom from the library.
The bride's sisters pick out a couple flowers for their sister's hair.
And we're ready to get the show on the road!
Mom's excited :)
Edward waits for his bride. Here she comes!
And they're married!
A quick time-out to fix the bustle and let it all set in ...
Turns out this is a three-person job. Lots of buttons on that train!
And off we go to take photos in the woods.
This group is the best! So much fun.
Beautiful bridesmaids!
Hilarious groomsmen.
Not sure what's going on.
So happy!
Emily and her lovely, ethereal gown fit right into this setting.
After a couple detours, we head back to the reception for dinner and dancing.
The evening light made this already romantic spot even more magical. Sigh.
Party guests.
And so the night continued with toasts, serenades and some stellar dancing. Such a wonderful night.
Thanks to Emily and Ed for letting me be there to capture it!
-Laura


 

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laurariderdesigns@gmail.com (Laura Rider Dutelle) Portland botanical garden cottage couple garden love paths wedding woods http://www.laurariderdesigns.com/blog/2013/8/wedding-in-the-woods Thu, 22 Aug 2013 04:29:41 GMT