The Journey Continues | Truthy Thursday

Writing has been hard this year.

…honestly, everything has.

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Depression has stolen more days from me than I’d like to admit and while I’m still trying to do my best, it can be quite deceiving to have it “appear” that I’m doing well because I’m still able to be “productive”.

Productive in quotes because while one thing may be getting done, 3 (or more) others aren’t 🙃. It’s a constant struggle trying to allocate and re-allocate where my energy goes when it shows up (thanks bipolar II!), managing work (and allll the many facets that come with owning and operating your own business), relationships, and trying to find and fine tune a wellness routine.

It’s exhausting.

Although mental health is being spoken about more these days (which is a VERY good thing), getting help for your mental illness is not an easy journey. I was diagnosed over two years ago and even after receiving a diagnosis, it took me a while to seek additional help for managing it. Often I find myself reasoning “well, I’ve been ‘dealing’ with it for this long, and managing to get stuff done, so it can’t be that bad” and although it may not be “that bad”, it’s still not good.

I often feel like I want to give up, but I’m thankful to my friends and family that haven’t given up on me, and as a result, I haven’t given up on myself.

Progress is not linear.

It’s such a simple sentence, but one that I’m truly learning to understand through and through. And in doing so, I’m learning to find solace in the small improvements I’ve been able to make and keep trying to find the right things to get and keep me on the track to wellness.

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Speaking of which… trying to find the *right* therapist is… a journey to say the least.

I was in therapy about 10 years ago for almost 3 years and had a pretty good experience! After my diagnosis in 2016, anxiety kept me from pursuing therapy again and when I finally did, I was a bit more optimistic than I realized, and that led to disappointment.

I didn’t have realistic expectations, nor was I clear on what I needed from a therapist. Now, I am. The only thing about that is that they are both things I needed to learn over time and after having spoken to different therapists (and spending money 🙃).

I say all that to say that while having a therapist is indeed an amazing addition to your mental wellness plan, just know that it may take you a few tries to find one that’s the best fit for you. If you’re wondering where to start your search, I’ve used both Open Path and Better Help. The jury’s still out on whether or not I feel that I need an in-person therapist, but I definitely think both services are really helpful!

This post has been a little long, but I guess that’s what happens when you don’t do a Truthy post for 6 months lol.

I will end by saying once more that I’m incredibly thankful for my tribe (both near and far) for hanging in there with me. Beyond finding a good therapist, the right medicinal cocktail if needed, a balanced diet, sleep, and exercise… a good support system is critical to helping manage mental illness.

I actually wrote a little about that in my friend Andrea’s (fourth!) book, We Inspire Me, that was just released this month! This was a bit of a lazy book announcement lol, but I just wanted to mention it briefly since I was talking about the same thing :)

Ok, now I’m fiiinally ending this post, and hopefully the next Truthy won’t be another 6 months from now 💛

-Danni

99 Days Later...

*blows dust off the keyboard*

Happy First day of August!

Ya'll... It has been exactly 99 days since my last post 😳 W H E R E is 2018 going?? Honestly the speed that time has been moving this year has gotten out of hand 😩

Things have been moving and moving some more around these parts, which is the reason for my unplanned blog hiatus, but today I'm sharing a mega recap of everything (well, mostly everything) from the past 3 months!


I have been having such a great time crafting business imagery for my clients these past few months. I've really enjoyed working with creative professionals across the spectrum (speakers, coaches, editors, authors, therapists, hair stylists, etc) to bring new life to their brand visuals:

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"Danielle's work precedes her and I was elated to book a mini brand session with her. From start to finish, she was professional, efficient, and thoughtful. On the day of our session, I felt completely at ease, knowing I was in the hands of an expert with a passion for their craft. The images are stunning and I will certainly work with her again and again!"
-Amber Wright

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Spring is typically a busy shooting season for lifestyle sessions, and this one was definitely one of the busiest! I held my very last Spring Mini Special in May, (not to worry, minis are now available for everyone, and you don't have to wait for a special ;) and the near constant rain caused the most reschedules EVER! Fortunately everything worked out and we were able to capture some wonderful moments:

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"I was so nervous coming into this. I haven’t taken professional photos since [my girls were born], but I shouldn’t have worried, Danielle's professionalism and encouragement put me at ease. I’m so glad I chose Danielle to capture us."
-LaNita Black

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"Danielle is a true joy and an incredible photographer. She made the whole experience really comfortable and the end result is amazing!! Everyone loves the photos, and I can't wait for the next session."
-Bev Gooden

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Gah! Seeing all of our work together like this gives me all the feels. I don't often take time to acknowledge my accomplishments because I'm moving quickly from one thing to another, so these recap posts are kind of for you and me lol.

To my clients: Thank you for trusting me. It really is an honor that I get to work with so many awesome people 🧡 


If you’re interested in scheduling a business or lifestyle session in the coming months, I would love to get you on the calendar. View available dates here + email me if you have any questions! Now booking: September and October.

All of the Things | Truthy Tuesday

You know that feeling when you accidentally oversleep? That INSTANT surge of adrenaline that hits when you roll over, see what time it is, and your mind floods with all of the things you had to do before you left vs how much of that won't get done now, as you hop up, throw your clothes on, and leave?

That feeling.

That's what these past few months have felt like... Because I've been doing ALL of the things!

Busy season got started way earlier than I anticipated this year and each week, I have been trying to find my equilibrium. 2017 ended, 2018 began... the month of April is almost finished, and I'm STILL trying to find that equilibrium. 

I know time moves fast, but it has really been moving at warp speed lately.

That being said, despite how quickly things have been moving, I am SUPER thankful to all of my beautiful clients for making this first quarter of 2018 a fruitful one. Despite my personal struggles, I am so very grateful to be able to do what I love for a living. 

Can I just tell you how much I love my clients?

I know I say that often, but I really do. It really means soo much to be trusted with documenting your important moments and creating beautiful business imagery for your brand.

Take a peek at what we've been up to! (Spoiler alert: a little bit of everything! Headshots, brand photos, family and grad photos, engagement, anniversary, and wedding portraits, with some mentoring and a few just because sessions thrown in there :)

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If you’re interested in a scheduling a photo session, I would love to get you on the calendar! Email me to schedule yours today! Currently booking: limited May dates, along with June, July, and August! 

Thankful | Washington, DC Lifestyle Photographer

Can I be real for a moment? Today has been one of the most stressful days I've had in a long while. 

Well... when I think about it, maybe it hasn't, but it sure felt like it.

I had an eearly early flight back home from Atlanta, and I lost my phone on the train :/

Although an inconvenience, that wouldn't have been a huge deal if I wasn't already sleep deprived and cutting it close getting to my gate. But that, combined with the busyness that was my last 4 days in Atlanta, knowing that I had a lot of work to do when I got back home, the Spring Mini Special opening tomorrow, texts, DMs, and emails to respond to, plans to finalize for this weekend's sessions, and... well, really I could go on... But, all of that settled squarely on my shoulders as I asked my gate agent for a printed boarding pass, trying to hold back tears.

I'm a pretty private person so crying in public is not something I tend to do. But that was all I could do in that moment because the brokenness I often feel, felt too heavy to bear in that moment.

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Thankfully after a smooth flight and a beautiful sunrise, the flight landed safely. And after a long nap, I got a new phone (yay!). Although today (and this past week) have been extremely stressful, tonight, I'm making myself take time to count my blessings because I truly do have a lot to be thankful for.

I am thankful that Denni and I had a safe trip to Atlanta, wonderful clients to work with, beautiful weather... Thankful that I made it home safely... Thankful that despite my mental illness, I am gifted with the ability to capture genuine moments for my clients, work with fellow photographers, and make a living doing what I love... Thankful for dear friends and family who love and support me... Thankful to my God for life, and for showing his love for me, even when I feel undeserving...

This blog post ended up being quite a different one than I'd planned for today. I was all about sharing beautiful spring images with you this week, but sharing happy images when I felt anything but, just didn't seem right.

Tomorrow at 10a, booking for the Spring Mini Special opens exclusively for subscribers, so if you haven't already, you should totally join.

Thanks for hanging with me and reading about my crazy day! I'm looking forward to getting a long night's rest and starting this week on a better note 🧡

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Mommy & Me: Spring Edition | Washington, DC Photographer

So... it was a pretty ambitious goal to blog every day until the start of Spring, and I gotta tell you, it hasn't been easy! This post is technically arriving on Saturday (in my time zone) but it'll still be Friday elsewhere so I'm going to make this my Friday AND Saturday post. Boom, problem solved lol.

Now, on to the goods:

Can I tell you what an honor it is to be able to document mothers with their children? No matter how old you get, those will always be photos that you treasure- ones with your mom :) So to be able to capture moments that will bring my clients enjoyment for years to come is a real privilege.

Check out a quick recap of a few mommy & me sessions!

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I hope you enjoyed these sweet mommy & me photos! Stay close because there's a few more posts left to share in the days leading up to the start of Spring next week!

Interested in a Spring Mini Session? Booking opens on March 19 at 10a- for subscribers only! Join the mailing list to book yours first! Not interested in a mini? No worries! To schedule a maternity session this Spring, shoot me an email! Currently booking: April, May, and June.