2014 was:

A. Insanity B. A mental tornado C. A thousand blessings in disguise D. All of the above.

This year I relocated from Hawaii to Winchester, VA then finally to Charlottesville, VA. I began a whole new journey with Firefly while simultaneously navigating life in the midst of profound changes and life-altering questions for two newly married 20-somethings.

There were moments when I would just cry with frustration and absolute confusion through the uncertainty. But I look back on these images with a lump in my throat at the luxury of being able to just figure it all out with the support of a husband who challenges me and loves me through all my messes -- with friends who are my personal cheerleaders and word-of-mouth ambassadors-- with family who never judges or questions my decisions to become a self-employed artist but glows with pride at each step I take -- with new clients and friends who step in front of my camera and allow me to capture their joy in life's most compelling moments. This year, I was able to work with newly engaged couples, babies in their first days of life, shoot lifestyle headshots for new business owners and capture cover art for an upcoming Christian worship album. I was featured in my first national publications for both writing tutorials and imagery. Really, it's incredible to reflect on how each experience evolved and each one inspires me that what I am doing each day to further this dream is actually working.

I am radically nostalgic so reflecting on the past year through my images in an incredibly humbling exercise. All of the images I pulled were frames that made me feel something - moments that, when captured, made my heart sing. I'm well aware that I pulled too many for this post but I just couldn't narrow it down any further. They are not perfect but they are powerful in that something about each of these images makes me feel warm inside, makes me smile, makes me giddy. Some of them are simply momentous of a new location or technique or genre.

I believe that images that capture real emotion illicit real emotion again and again. I think that's the one consistent factor that I noticed when I look at these favorites collectively - they are real. Above all, I have always wanted my images to be real. Looking at this collection of favorites makes me excited and proud because I feel like I am finally discovering and molding exactly what Firefly Photography is all about -

> genuine, lively, personalized portraiture for people who value the sparkle of life.

girl jumping, virginia childrens photographer

couples virginia engagement session, vineyard

indoor childrens session, winchester va

childrens photography, winchester va, girl

boys senior session, winchester virginia

sisters photo session, orchard, winchester virginia

couples photo session, charlottesville downtown mall, urban winter

sisters photo session, indoor, winchester book gallery, virginia

newborn boy, baby photography, charlottesville virginia

girls styled session, winchester va, urban, parking garage, white

girls senior session, winter, winchester virginia

couples photoshoot, virginia, snow, winter

stylish country maternity session, winchester virginia

newborn baby, father and son, indoor lifestyle photography

outdoor family session, fall, charlottesville va

fall 4 month old girl outdoor session

glitter photoshoot winchester va

the point worship team, barboursville vineyards, charlottesville

mother daughter photo session, country, winchester va

easter photoshoot with animals, childrens photography

brothers photo session, newborn boy, outdoor, charlottesville

winter outdoor family session, 1 year old girl

senior stylized shoot, valentines, charlottesville

fall engagement session outdoor closeup

siblings indoor lifestyle photo session

outdoor professional headshots charlottesville virginia, the image coach

indoor sisters photo session, tickling, winchester book gallery

lifestyle headshots session charlottesville va

snowy winter couples session, virginia

outdoor forest storytime family session darden towe park

pet photography family session marker miller orchard winchester va

indoor lifestyle family newborn session

mother daughter photography charlottesville va

Every day I am reminded that a career as a professional photographer is ambitious, competitive, and demanding.

It is also exhilarating, purposeful, and my absolute dream come[ing] true.

So you can believe that Firefly Photography is going to kick it into high gear with some amazing new design, an elevated experience, and consistently beautiful imagery in 2015. If you want to see more from some of the sessions highlighted here, check out the recent shoots and browse some full session features. And for your flashback dose, check out my "Most Memorable Images from 2013" post here for some more all-time favorites.

Here's to Happy New Year to you and those you hug the tightest.