SESSIONS: JereMia is expecting!

SESSIONS: JereMia is expecting!

Over 2 sessions late last year and within a  1 month time span, I got to watch Jeremy and Mia’s (here dubbed “JereMia”) little family grow with the birth of their first baby, Jones.

For our first session, I took photos of JereMia and that adorable baby bump. Which, by the way, you can barely even see from the front or back. It was really just from a side profile that it was more than obvious! And she was already 36 months! The ever radiant Mama Mia had just gotten off of work. She was working an extra 2 hours after work for the past couple of weeks to build up some compensatory time because local government jobs does not offer maternal leave. Also, she was due in the next month!

Jeremy and Mia jumped out of their big white truck and led me to their house along the main road in Faganeanea. Jeremy took off his hat and tousled his hair. Mia put on lipstick and took a quick look in the mirror while offering me a glass of wine, and they were ready.

It was already almost 6pm and the sun was going down quickly. We took photos in front of the house, around the yard, and ran across the road to the seawall to snap some shots in front of the ocean, the rock landmark, and the bus stops. I mostly asked them silly questions, and we giggled over Mia’s baby mama waddle, but I also told them to talk to each other so they could basically hang out while I took photos. Actually most of these photos are candid! There were just a few incidents where I told Mia to cup her belly (so that you could see her bump better), told them to hold hands in front of their house, or for Jeremy to look at Mia and talk to her instead of to the camera. Other than that, Jeremy and Mia were naturals in front of the camera. In less than an hour before the sun had set, we were done!






This is Mia.

Now that she’s pregnant, I’ve been calling her Mama Mia. It suits her.

She’s got that radiant glow of life beaming from her smile and laughter.

In just 2 more months, she’ll welcome her little bundle of joy.

So she will have a million more reasons to smile and laugh.

Finally doing it

Finally doing it


JAN 2016

It has been a goal of mine to create my own website for the past couple of years. Now that it’s the beginning of 2016, what excuse do I have? None, that’s what! I am still working on putting together a portfolio to showcase my works (my sole external hard drive containing all my original photos went kaput in 2015). And the site is still a work in progress, but I am finally doing it.

Finding inspiration all around me.


I’ve been blogging pretty consistently for the past 5 years on Tumblr, mostly as a photo journal. It was my first blog. When I was got started, I didn’t have any expectations for it. I had no idea how often I should update it and I didn’t think that I would really get any followers. I had just gotten my first DSLR camera and I was ecstatic! I tried the 365 photo challenges that helped me to find other budding photographers online, and I convinced my best friend to get a blog too. Soon she got her first DSLR camera, and we were those girls who ran around “location scouting” at all the most obscure places we could find. We taught ourselves all the basics and let our imaginations guide us through the rest. And then we landed our first freelance gig, shooting a wedding for a friend of a friend. I think that’s what launched my passion for photography in the first place. Those summers hanging out with my best friend everyday (we were at the same time working together for a nonprofit to create a TV show/documentary about smoking amongst youth in American Samoa) taking photos of the sunrise and chasing sunsets, car dancing, our summer playlist on repeat, laughing and crying over boys. It was classic.


When it wasn’t summer, I was in college, expanding my horizons. I took photos. I kept blogging. One of my favorite courses was Internet Marketing Design (I was a Business Marketing major) and I grew more interested in web design. I reached out to a small business owner who allowed me to test a sandbox site for design element ideas to grow his business. And now, I manage 3 websites for professional organizations.

Up until more recently, I thought my Tumblr blog would suffice as a be-all blog and portfolio. There are a lot of pros and cons to using Tumblr, but there’s really no solid way to do both at the same time when a blog is dynamic and a portfolio is arguably more static. Besides, I’ve grown up with that blog. It’s personal, and very much a photo journal. And that’s why I feel that a dedicated website would be more substantial for what I want to do going forward.

What do I want to do? Well that’s the fun part… I don’t know yet! I’m currently freelancing as a photographer and web designer in American Samoa while working a full-time job. And who knows, maybe this will intersect my portfolio and blog nicely enough so that I can make this more of a permanent gig… I wish!

This is where I will be chronicling my creative works, adventures, photography, and stories worth mentioning. I don’t know where I’m going, but I know the journey is going to be sweet.

  • N E R E L L E