things that excite.

Seeking out inspiration can feel like a full time job- much less actually creating something. I have been really focusing on really digging up knowledge and creative sources- on and off the computer screen. This quest, while it may seem fruitless to some because of the lack (no) pay, I genuinely believe that it does sooo much for my work. It gets me excited and clears my mental fog. To witness someone else’s pure creative genius just makes me want to conquer the world.

That being said, I have to remember to dislodge myself from the limitless sources of inspiration and actually produce something myself.

So let’s talk about a few things that I have found lately that excite me:

1. Getting featured in New York Minute Magazine.

I was featured in an online publication that focused on my “hipster” styling. While I was semi reprimanded for my lack of brushed hair (guilty as charged), I was honored to be in their fashion section. Check out the full article here.

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2. Typography.

This has been extra exciting lately, since I am currently learning how to produce my own. This has opened up a world that I am limitlessly impressed by. The pure talent of some of these artists baffles and inspires me. I truly wish I was only interested in one creative venture at a time- because I feel a full on typography all nighter coming on. //All images below found on Pinterest.

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3. Summer reads.

Right now, I am book marked and dog eared in about 7 different pieces of literature.

Including, but not limited to:

1. Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist- author of another book titled “Bittersweet”, which I also love.

2. My So Called Freelance Life by Michelle Goodman- a wonderful and honest view of what it means to run your own creative business.

3. How To Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer- a not so typical love story recommended to me by an old English teacher of mine.

4. A Movable Feast by Ernest Hemingway- I am very drawn to all of his work.

I would give you my opinion of these pieces, but I haven’t gotten far enough in to give you an educated review. To come later. A book I recently finished (and loved) (in a “I hate this” all encompassing, can’t put it down way) was The Paris Wife by Paula McClain. It’s a story written from the fictional voice of Hadley, Ernest Hemingway’s first wife (I told you I have a thing for him). I have recommended this book to several of my friends, and they all loved it. I would say more, but I’d ruin the story. Go read it.

Hope you’re having a very nice Wednesday.

XOXO, k.

Mallory and Ben’s engagement shoot// Deep Ellum.

To say that Mallory and Ben are a fun couple would be an understatement. I spent the morning with these two laughing, drinking coffee and dancing. Yes, dancing. I’m surprised I even got any pictures taken. But good thing these two gorgeous individuals made my job easy. Feast your eyes, folks.

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During the shoot, I had Ben tell me the story of them meeting to get them a little more comfortable. And I just fell in love with them. These two are so obviously in love with each other that it inspired me to love on MY husband a little better. How cool is that?

Come October, these two will officially be the Pyles, and I couldn’t be happier for them.

xoxo, k.

how charming.

Life is confusing and stressful and downright cruel sometimes. (Not the introduction you were expecting for such a fla la la title, was it? I’m getting there…)

I am not a stranger to the hard things in life- and I don’t believe that anyone in their 20’s really is, despite the fact that we are all desperately trying to seem “normal” and mentally sane. (Easier on some days than others.) For a long time, I believed that “strong” and “private” were synonyms.  And by private, I mean mostly about the less than perfect things. That you couldn’t be happy while admitting that sometimes that your life can really suck, that the way you yelled at your dog was Jerry Springer material, and that you’re not quite sure how you’re going to afford your dentist bill. In a time saturated by social media, where every meal you eat can have a Walden filter thrown on it, you can easily feel disconnected from the genuine emotion of humans. I can also easily get sucked into this world of charm and, sometimes, narcissistic billboarding of one’s “lovely” life. I am here to say that my life is not this perfect picture. Behind every meal is a huge mess of flour in my hair and splatter on the walls. Behind every date night picture is a month of conquering our differences and fighting not to be another statistic in a world that glorifies selfishness. Every fun weekend with friends is years of misunderstandings, hurt feelings and wondering if you’re worth it to them too.

That all to say, I can tell you that I am happy. Happy and flawed. And I am happiest when I can admit the flawed, ugly, and weird aspects of my life, because that’s what connects you to people and let’s them know you’re just another person. And while Instagram and Twitter can be charming and beautiful, it is the other side of the lens that is crucial. Because we’re all messed up. And we need something deeper than our heavy filtered snapshots to feel connected to one another.

Now, I am a wanna-be professional photographer. I am not saying give up social media or hashtag your acne breakouts, but I challenge you to be cognizant of the world and people around you. Send letters with your real hand writing and real emotions. Reach out to people and encourage them. Be intentional with your conversations. Don’t get on your phone during dinners. Be honest in your short comings, not just your successes. Apologize when you’re wrong. Even if it’s from years ago. Start listening and asking questions. Real questions. And don’t let this shallow world swallow you whole.

For the love of pete, don’t let it swallow you whole.

 

xoxo, k

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a wedding of two best friends.

// in respect for the photographers of the wedding, some images have been taken down until after their posting.

Ben and Candace are one of those couples that, when you raise your glass for a toast, you know they deserve it. They have fought hard over these last few years to get to the vows that will forever bond them. Here are a few pictures from their amazing barn wedding.

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A litte history: My friendship started with Ben when I was in Jr. High. He was this shy 6’9″ boy at church who had a great taste in music and refused to give hugs. We slowly became best friends. We hung out almost every day after school and his family even bought extra peanut butter, honey and bananas so I could make my favorite sandwiches at his house at lunch. I spent most weekends of my highschool experience at the Knox’s house with the rest of our friends. Ben became friends with Clint- a missionary kid who had moved from California. Clint was the only boy who wouldn’t shoot me with are-soft bullets or put pepper in my Diet Coke, so I decided he was datable. He also rocked the Justin Bieber hair before Justin Bieber hair was a thing. Me, Ben and Clint hung out a lot. And I was grounded alot because of them. One day, Ben got pneumonia. And bad. He was in the hospital for a quite awhile and Clint and I would come and keep him company and make fun of his paper robes and weight loss like any good friend would. During Ben’s lengthy sickness, Clint and I were hanging out alone for the first time. Our first alone hang out was us chugging two Route 44 Ocean Waters each because we heard it would make your pee turn blue. Spoiler: it doesn’t. We never stopped having dates after that. So thank you, Ben, for being my best friend growing up and for introducing me to my husband.

Then comes Candace. The first thing I ever heard about her was Ben’s confession that “there’s this SUPER hot girl at my school named Candace”. Candace and I laugh about the first few times of us meeting. We were scared to talk to each other because I thought she was “shy and didn’t want to be friends” and she thought I was “hyper and didn’t want to be friends”. Ben and Candace started dating when Ben had just gotten to UNT. We went to Ben’s basketball games together, college get togethers that Ben and Clint’s friends (who all lived together in a house) put on (which really ended in us secluding ourselves in a corner and making bets about how many germs were infested in their couch) , and weekend hang outs at the Knox’s when we were all in town. The four of us have pretty much been inseperable. We even spent our Christmas break traveling all the way to New Mexico and the Grand Canyon together. She even traveled out to Houston on THANKSGIVING DAY to cook beside me. I seriously love Candace, because she unapologetically herself. And she is going to make one helluvah wife. So thank YOU, Candace, for being such a constant, real, and loving best friend to me. You’re stuck with me forever.

So cheers to such a beautiful couple! Please pray strength, protection, and joy over these two in their first year of marriage. And try not to be insanely jealous that they’re adventuring in Colorado for two weeks right now and you’re not.

xoxo, k.

//you will be able to find the official wedding pictures from the photographers, Luiz and Lo Baptista, at lhimage.com.

Shira wedding.

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This last weekend, I had the pleasure of witnessing a beautiful marriage of two of me and Clint’s dear friends committing their lives to each other. It was such a sweet time of breaking bread with our friends and being reminded of how sacred and wonderful marriage is. And having an excuse to spend the weekend in Austin wasn’t too shabby either.

Here’s a sneak peek of a few shots I got from the weekend.

DSC_0030The guys were nice enough to let me join in on their man time the day of to capture some last shots of Elben’s singledom. I am so proud to call this group of men my best friends. They are some of the most intelligent, hilarious and solid men out there.

As for some background: Elben (pictured on the right in the blue) was Clint’s best man in our wedding. Most of the  others were roommates with Clint in college. We actually all went to the same high school- even though our friendships at  that time were limited to (and fondly remembered) as a few head nods in the hall ways.

Over the years, we all shared a love for Dexter, late night donut runs, nerdy games and getting into mischief. They helped make Austin my home and stood beside me when I, myself, said “I do”.

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xoxo, k.

weekend adventures.

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After a long (but fun!) week of Valentine’s day festivities, crazy work schedules, and making new friends, Clint and I decided to take the weekend to get some fresh air. We went to Brazos Bend State Park, which is about an hour outside of Houston.

Once we got there, we were taken back by how gorgeous it was. Before we even got to our camp site, we pulled over and I whipped out my camera. Even though I wasn’t wearing any makeup or had brushed my hair that day (thinking I’d only be seen by the trees, not a camera lens), you can’t fight inspiration when it strikes. The sunset was simply amazing.

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We set up our tent, roasted some hotdogs over the fire, talked about life under the stars and went to sleep in the FREEZING night. The next morning, we went hiking on a few of the trails.

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And a few fun shots we got tonight from the photo booth set up at our church:

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This week had an amazing service (AGAIN). I am so thankful to be at a place that feels like home. I am excited to grow into this church and into Houston. Finally.

XOXO, k.