MINERVA HOUSE

Deeeeeep Breath.

I have been so excited to share this… CHOMPING AT THE BIT, REALLY… and it’s here, well a little bit of it.

I’ve spent the last 13 years building a business that I’m so proud of.  I have the most precious, loyal, insanely beautiful, talented, believing, trusting clients a photographer could ask for.  My wedding clients trusted me when I told them I would shoot their weddings like “album covers” because there was no photographic reference for what I envisioned on a wedding day- now look at this incredible industry.  My clients waited for their proofs to be processed and printed before film could even be scanned- and ordered prints from me that I slaved in the darkroom to create for them.  They were patient with me as I learned how to function shooting digitally- with my film camera close by because I couldn’t “risk” it with digital- now for so many  the “risk” is film… (it’s so cool to see the “risk” being taken again and again these days! ) They were loyal to me when I moved ACROSS THE OCEAN and scheduled their sessions when I was home, planned their wedding dates around my travel schedule, and INVESTED in me by following my travels, reading the endless chatter on my blog, and telling everyone they knew to do the same.  I can’t say THANK YOU enough.  I am so humbled by the love and support that i’ve been showered with through the years. It’s all been a treasured gift from God.  I can’t take credit for any of it.

I left college with a BFA in Photography and a desire to teach-  grad school was the only option to be an “official” teacher… and i was DOOOOONE with school.  I remember talking to Mr. B (my beloved professor) and saying, I’m going to do it- I’m going to teach, but I’m going to do it MY WAY, and i did.  I began teaching CRASHcourses in photography to anyone with a camera and a desire to learn.  It was so incredibly rewarding.  Soooo many discovered incredible gifts hiding within and with the tools to express them, came alive in ways unimaginable without this gift of photography.  I taught photographers who wanted to learn business, balance, growth, and to be empowered by the vision unique to them, and in a sea of  photographers, shine & stand tall.  I’ve always operated from a place of MORE.  there is always MORE.  MORE CREATIVITY, MORE IDEAS, MORE WORK, MORE TO GIVE, MORE TO RECEIVE.  THERE IS ALWAYS MORE… From this deep belief I’ve shared all I know, I’ve given away all I have to give, and I’ve been better for it.  I’ve grown in ways that you only can when you empty yourself out and believe that only God can fill you back up.  I’ve held nothing back, I’ve laid it all on the table.  I’m really, really proud of that.

I’ve known for about a year that there was something great coming, I could feel it stirring deep within me, so I waited and little by little began to close the doors of Shauna Maness Photography… I had no idea what was around the corner… but I could feel that a great chapter was closing and a new one beginning.  I can say IN ALL HONESTY that I can look back, hold my head up and say, I DID IT MY WAY.  (cue Frank Sinatra Jay Z;)) But I could not have done it alone, THANK YOU ALL for your love, support, belief, and unwavering loyalty.

ON TO THE NEXT… (cue Jay Z again)

this is going to be great.

when i say great, i mean GREAT.

I HOPE YOU JOIN ME FOR THE RIDE.

Enter Candace Moore and

MINERVA HOUSE.

I’ve gushed over and over about how I love her work.  This girl is a force to be reckoned with.  I knew it INSTANTLY.  I was shaken by her work the first time I laid eyes on it- and she continues to blow me away DAILY.  The short version of this story is that I wanted to build something GREAT.  I WANTED TO BUILD A COMPANY that was as big as my dreams… and there is only one person on the planet that I could do that with… We share the same dreams, visions, training, beliefs, loves, hopes, and heart behind it all.  We are each other’s other creative half.  It’s more of a gift than I could ever say to sit across from someone who makes you better, who you know is willing to work her fingers TO THE BONE, push until there is nothing more, and then get up and do it all over again.  We are MINERVA HOUSE.

We’ve started a Photography company that will focus on Wedding, Select Lifestyle, and Fashion Photography.  We are beyond excited.

So my photography world has merged into MINERVA HOUSE- and the work I create can be found at www.thisisminvervahouse.com.  This will still be my blog- I’ll share my personal journey, inspiration, and thoughts on any given thing… and of course, a peak into the MINERVA HOUSE world.

A look into our world is up now… head over and say hello! PHOTO CREDIT: JME OF CHERRYBONES PHOTOGRAPHY

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Shauna - Libby!!! you are the sweetest! we are still neighbors… we are just on the WEST SIDE ;) !!
juuuuuuuump.

David Wick - Cool

Amy Jones Chappelle - Can’t wait to see what all you guys are up too! Love both of your work!

Jacqueline Trezza - Congratulations, and best of luck!

Sarah Bible - So excited for you! :)

Libby - 2 things:

- Congrats! Minerva House looks amazing :-)

- This makes me want to jump off into the creative deep end again which I haven’t done in far, far too long, so thanks for the inspiration!

(and really, there were 3 things)

- Glad you’re our neighbor even if we only ever see you in passing!

The “Clean Up” Song

So much is going on around here.  We are singing new songs and re-writing old ones… such is life.  I thought I would share this fun little download for you to enjoy.  The “Clean Up” Song is sung all day around here- My sister and I got TIRED of the only verse we knew (the first one)… So I wrote a few more.  This can be printed as an 8×12 or 12×8… you can get both frames at Michaels… and your playroom/bedroom/where EVER all the toys are room is just a little cuter!

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Kim Kravitz - I only knew the first one! lol Thanks for sharing this!

Carol Jones - so cute. :) We have to make up words to songs are we lose our minds!
Here’s one I wrote too:
Clean up, clean up, everybody everywhere, clean up clean up everybody do your share. We are happy when we laugh and when we play. We are happy when we put our toys away. Here’s my _________ (insert name of toy) I will put my toys away. Clean up Clean up ready for another day.

Rachel McClain - I love you! Oh how I wish I could see you and live this time of your life near you. Miss y’all!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year >> Christmas Card design + printing

 

I love sending out Christmas cards.  Who am I kidding? I love sending out ANY kind of cards… I’m just thankful there is a time of year I can justify the time it takes to create a cool one, have it printed, and then spend the hours it takes addressing them.  It’s a serious monetary and time investment.  It’s worth every penny and second too.  I loooove getting Christmas cards in the mail.  I use them as decor and pack them away each year with the decorations so that I can see how our friends change yearly.  It’s always fun to see the evolution of the lives we love.

This year I used a combination of templates from Galler.ee and was done in an hour.  (It would have been minutes but I customized each design, changed fonts, sizes, colors, orientations, and had to write witty copy… so naturally that can’t be rushed.)  If you are a photographer and aren’t a Galler.ee member you are CRAZY! $20 bucks a month, unlimited downloads (they have INCREDIBLE designs), and they are always coming up with really, really cool tools for photographers.  Our photograph was taken by my LOVELY SISTER JACKLYN… she has serious skills >>> and we were done in about 5 minutes flat- she is QUICK! I am so, so, thankful she shared her gifts with us- I’ll share the incredible work she did soon.

Design combo above: Year in Review, Holiday Collection by Hand

I had our cards printed at Overnight Prints.  They are FAST and their ordering system is by far my favorite for printing flat cards.  You can print 25 cards or 25,000 – their pricing is fantastic too.

 

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Barbie Hemberger Weller - Shauna, your family is absolutely beautiful … amazing how God truly works for us to give us the desires of our heart ~ in HIS perfect way & time <3

We gave lots of thanks.

do you see how tired these babies are? they wore each other OUT.

the littles and I take walks, it’s our thing.

I can’t even express how much i love having a camera phone.  I know it sounds cheesy- we all have them- but I am REALLY REALLY THANKFUL.  I’ve started documented our days with instagram and organizing them with #hashtags so that at the end of the year (or whenever i fancy) I can create books or prints with the click of a button… and no going back through and sorting (thank you #hashtags!).  I still use my “real” camera too- probably once or twice a week… but my phone is my go-to.  I snapped these using the VSCO camera app (that’s all I use) and edited them through out the day… before the night was over I shared them with my sister online and didn’t have to pick up my computer once.  PRAISE THE LORD.  I know they aren’t perfect.  I actually love that they aren’t perfect.  It feels like going through a photo album of me as a kid.  We never had perfect photographs- they were perfectly imperfect instead.  A little blurred, sometimes questionably processed, exposed incorrectly, composition all wrong- yet they bring us back to those moments just as well as the near perfect ones we work so hard to get.  My camera phone is a blessed break from perfect.  It’s nice to embrace a little imperfection for a change.  I hope your Thanksgiving was a great one.  Our’s was really special.

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Chicago called me Texas >> and other Snow thoughts

A few of things to point out here: 1. Romeo is ice skating in his Jordan’s 2. that jacket was my dad’s and i remember him wearing it when i was Nico’s age 3. he has fantasy’s of being a hockey player

(and can you see how intense Nico is? he cracks me up- he was really trying to understand this snow/ice thing)

I grew up in Texas.  It snowed a few times when I was growing up.  There is a photo of my brother and I attempting to build a snow man out of the white ground cover that fell on our yard overnight.  It was a pitiful sight.  Frosty didn’t make it long.  So when I moved to Germany I was a little nervous.  First, let me say, I imagined ARCTIC SNOW, Siberia style.  I was pleasantly surprised by the German winters (no where close to Siberian)… and really excited about my first one.

I remember waking up and looking out of my kitchen window into the valley and seeing everything covered in white.  It was breathtaking.  I set out to find the perfect snow boot (because a girl needs the right shoes, right? first thing’s first) so I walked down to the village enjoying the snow crunching beneath my feet every step of the way.  The next day I put my boots on and headed out early to run some errands.  When I returned to my parking spot later that afternoon it was covered with snow.  Up to my bumper snow.  (This is the part of the story that my Texas upbringing needs to be called to the forefront of your mind.  My only experience with large piles of snow was in the form of shaved ice for SNOW CONES… white, fluffy, & soft) With my understanding of snow as a (really poor) reference I swung my car wide and tried to pull into my parking space.  I HIT A WALL… OF SNOW.  It wasn’t soft and fluffy… It was frozen.  Um, like snow is.  Wow.  I literally stayed safe all day driving in the snow to come home and crash parking in the snow.

My neighbor, who was from Chicago, was conveniently taking a smoke break outside as I pulled in. She witnesed the whole thing, and fell over laughing hysterically.  I was stunned.  I even hit my face on my steering wheel (and thanked God the airbags didn’t deploy!).  I opened up my door and stood outside in shock and blurted out in outrage,

“It’s snow! I thought it was soft!  What is the deal? What do I do? I can’t even park my car!”

She dried up the laughter and with the most serious face she could muster said,

“Well Texas, you have to shovel it.”

at that moment I realized that Texas was synonymous for idiot… and that is exactly what I felt like.

That was the day my love affair with snow ended.  I was over it.  Shoveling snow is for the birds.

I have many other snow stories from our time in Germany and they all teach the same lesson.

STAY HOME.

So when the snow and ice fall here in North Texas (as it has for the past several days), you better believe Texas has her boots on (same ones) and is crunching around ON FOOT with my Misters by my side.

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Carol Jones - Oh gosh, I laughed until I cried. :)

F A C E B O O K