2012: Onward and Upward

Instead of jumping right into resolutions for 2012, I am first going to take a look back at 2011. Not in hindsight, mind you, but rather to reflect on the things I was proud of in 2011, and to set goals on what I can think about improving on for the year to come. Hat tip to my friend Carol Kelley for this one!

In 2011, I took a photography course to get more comfortable behind the lens. Something that I’m very glad I did, but in recent months, I haven’t been taking too many photos. So, for 2012, I plan to take many more, to try and hone my craft just a little more.

As usual, in 2011, I ran the Vancouver Sun Run with my Mom, and our trusty running partners/good friends Leslie and Danica, like we do every year. I also ran the Times Colonist 10K in Victoria with my Mom, my aunts and my cousins (The Behan B*tches, as we like to call ourselves). It was a short, but fun, trip. Both runs I completed in under 50 minutes. In 2012, I will most definitely do the Sun Run again, but I’m hoping for a time under 49 min. I would also like to run a half marathon. It’s a sure-fire way to stay in shape, if I have something to train for.

In March, I went snowboarding in Whistler on my 29th birthday, with some of my closest friends. It was a day to remember, for sure. This year, I turn 30. (Eeep!) I’m not quite sure what I would like to do to celebrate this year, BUT, I do know I want to get in many more days of snowboarding before the snow melts. Mt. Baker, anyone?

This year, I also got more involved with the Vancouver Tech Community, through working with InitioGroup and Bootup. I loved every minute of it, as I always feel inspired when surrounded by smart people doing amazing things. I hope to stay involved, and to go to more tech events this year.

This past summer, I was once again a bridesmaid, in my dear friend Diana’s wedding. We’ve known each other since we were 5 years old, and have stayed great friends for almost 25 years. That’s an accomplishment in itself! I also planned her bachelorette party, which was held in Tofino, BC. It may not be the most solid thing to be proud of on this list, but everyone who came had such a great time, and everything went off without a hitch. I couldn’t believe it. A bachelorette party – where everyone involved had to travel to get there – and no drama. Just some girls, getting along, surfing, (oh, 1st time surfing!) and having a blast. Nice work, team.


bradyclarkephotography.com

2011 also marks the first time I have ever been an MC at a wedding! Now THAT I was proud of. I didn’t even crap my pants. No seriously, though, it was fantastic, and I would do it again in a heartbeat. As long as I get to do with my co-MC, eh Jerra?

There are also a few other personal “resolutions” that I have for myself, that I plan on keeping throughout 2012. I’m hoping, anyway! (Some hints: career, travel, fitness)

What are you proud of from the past year? Do you have any New Year’s resolutions? In any case, here’s to bigger and better in 2012!

Contiki Holidays VIP Euro Bash

Last night I attended the Contiki Holidays VIP Euro Bash at V Lounge in Yaletown. What. A. Party! And I’m not just saying that because one of my best girlfriends, Sheralyn, was a huge factor in making it the success that it was. (And she did happen to be the one that invited me!) Contiki doesn’t mess around when they throw a party.

The lovely host, Sheralyn
Sheralyn, the lovely hostess for the evening. The girl can rock a red dress like it’s nobody’s business!

Table decorations

Greek God at the Contiki VIP Euro Bash

Everything from a custom cocktail list, a VIP section sponsored by the Spanish Tourism Board, tasty hors d’oeuvres (duck confit – wow, yum!), music by DJ Zu of ZUZU Productions, to a cabaret show by NY Jazz Company dancers, contributed to one impressive and memorable party to celebrate Contiki and their longtime supporters. And to top it all off, we were treated to an amazing performance by Canadian singer/songwriter Keshia Chanté. More photos can be viewed on Flickr here.

Drink Menu

Spanish Tourism Board VIP section

DJ Zu

Cabaret dancers

Contiki Holidays is in the process of re-branding itself to appeal more to their target market, which is 18-35 year olds. This party showcased some of that re-branding with a Euro and Burlesque theme. The photos can’t quite capture just how risqué the cabaret dancers were, saucily stripping down to their teeny tiny birthday suits. I applaud these girls!

Cabaret dancers

Cabaret dancers

Cabaret dancers

Part of this re-branding also includes Contiki launching their “Have You Done It?” campaign with a cheeky video spot that some of you may have seen online. Here’s the teaser that brings you to the website. And here’s the kicker:

Not your typical adventure travel company, eh?

The highlight of the evening, though, was definitely seeing Keshia Chanté perform. What a big sound coming from that tiny frame! I thought the windows of V Lounge might shatter from the force of her powerful voice. She sang about half a dozen songs, finishing off with her new single, “Set You Free,” which starts airing on the radio next week. This was only the second time she’s performed it live – the first time being at the Contiki Bash in Toronto last week. She even happened to name-drop Contiki in the song! That’s a PR dream come true. I smell a collaboration with Contiki & Keshia in the near future, no?

Keshia Chanté

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Keshia Chanté

Keshia Chanté

It’s always nice seeing some familiar faces at these kinds of events, and even making a few new friends, too!

Eric + Sheralyn

Earls Girls: Kate & Amanda

Flight Centre folks

Flight Centre folks

Sheralyn + Chris

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Oh yes, I can’t forget the swag bag I was given as I walked out the door. The Lady Dutch purse hook – you know that baby is going to go to good use!

Contiki swag bag

So Contiki… you can definitely feel free to invite me to more of your parties. Brad mentioned something about an anniversary party later on this year… yeah. Ok? Thanks.

Keshia with the Contiki crew
Keshia posing with the Contiki Holidays crew.

~

Best of 2010

It’s a little late, but what the heck. I’ve never done a full year recap on my blog – only a summer recap in photos – probably because it’s very time-consuming. But this year was pretty special, with a lot of news-worthy items to share, so… let’s get started.

January

I did a contract gig from January to March for AdHack. Some of you might remember.

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I also started doing more contract work for Alex Lee PR, Wesley Behan, RE/MAX Crest Realty, & Tell Ten Friends.

February

There was this event that took place in Vancouver that was pretty huge. You might have heard about it.

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Women's Slovakia vs. Russia game

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Oh yeah, and my Mom carried the Olympic Torch in Powell River on February 4th, right before it made its way back to Vancouver for the Opening Ceremonies. KIND OF A BIG DEAL.

@bcbarbara's biggest supporters

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March

Always the best month. My birthday! I celebrated at Sanafir with some of my best girlfriends. Photo courtesy of Erin Buttler.

I took photos of Jerra’s baby belly for her, a month before she gave birth. I love this photo of her.

Maternity Photos

April

Twestival Vancouver, held at the CBC Studio. Photo by Jonathan Hanley.

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April 26th, my best friend Jerra’s baby girl, Halle, was born.

May

The Vancouver Sun Run fell on Mother’s Day. As usual, I ran it with my Mom, my friend Danica, and her mom Leslie. We were even featured in the paper, and I wrote a post about it.

Chelsea came to visit BC, all the way from Minnesota!

June

Launch Party Vancouver 9 put on by Bootup. Photo of my brother Jordan and I, by Jeremy Lim.

Launch Party Vancouver 9

Conviction Kitchen Season 2 started filming in Vancouver.

Conviction Restaurant @ Delilah's

The last get-together with Liz and Di, before they took off for summer holidays, and before they both moved away from Vancouver. *tear*

Di + Liz + I

July

Fun times with fun peeps.

J + J + J

Our annual family getaway to our cabin, Kokanee Cedar, on Powell Lake.

Kokanee Cedar

Kokanee Cedar

We were also in Powell River for Sea Fair weekend.

Seafair

Seafair

And on the 27th of July, my niece Ava Lorraine Hyunseon Behan was born. Love at first sight.

July was a good month.

August

Conviction Kitchen Season 2 wrap-up party for the last day of filming in Vancouver.

Conviction Kitchen Wrap up Party

Then back to Powell River for Ava’s christening and for her to meet all of her Behan + Adams family.

On August 27th, my good friend Liz had a little boy named Micah. He was born a little bit early, and there were a few complications, which required him to be flown from the Powell River Hospital to Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. But that boy had a big heart and will to live, baby, and he is now as strong as ever, keeping his parents mighty busy. <3

September

Amanda’s birthday, Stacey P’s birthday/housewarming party, my Dad’s birthday, my cousin Cooper’s birthday, etc. Lots of people are born in September.

October

I got my new-to-me Nikon D90! Hence, the increase in photos in my Flickr stream. Gobble, gobble.

thanksgiving

There was gorgeous weather in October, if you remember.

the pr view

Oh yeah, I got a new job!

November

Riot Fashion Show at Guilt & Co. to play around with the new camera.

Stacey + Amber

December

First trip to Mt. Baker and first ride of the season with Buttler! So snowy and delicious. And it was like a mini vacation because I had to take my passport. Yippee! Photo courtesy of Erin Buttler.

Some kick-arse holiday parties.

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Christmas with the fam in PR.

Jaxon’s very first time on skates. He loved it. And it was Ava’s first Christmas.

Auntie Janis - get me outta here!

Happy New Year!

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What was your “Best of 2010”? Or rather, what are you looking forward to in 2011?

Riot Fashion Theatre

A few weeks ago, I attended the Riot fashion show at Guilt & Co. My good friend (and hairdresser) Stacey, and her co-worker Amber were a couple of the models, so I brought along my camera to take a few shots for them.

Riot Fashion show @ Guilt & Co. Amber + Stacey before the catwalk!
Amber + Stacey

I didn’t really care at first about getting the traditional “runway shots,” but in hind sight, I wish I would have sat at the end of the runway to catch the models when they stopped and actually posed. Those seats were taken quickly, though, and instead I was off to the side of the runway. It was much more difficult trying to get a good shot from there, but I did my best.

Riot Fashion Theatre

Riot Fashion Theatre

Riot Fashion Theatre

Riot Fashion Theatre

I also took a couple of close-up shots before and after the show for Stacey and Amber, because their hair and make-up, which was done by Aveda, looked amazing.

Stacey + Amber

Anyways, I’ve never taken proper photos at a fashion show before, so this was an experiment. You live and you learn! View the full set here.

Newborn Photography: Baby H

Mama J and Baby H said that I could post a few photos of our little newborn session we did awhile back, so here goes!

My best friend gave birth to the most beautiful little girl on April 26, 2010. I was just dying to take photograph her, so when J asked me to take a few photos for them for a birth announcement, I was beyond excited.

She was supposed to be fast asleep while we were doing the shoot, so we could do cute little angelic-style shots and move her around with her really noticing, but she wasn’t having any of it. “First photoshoot? Of course I’m going to be awake for it!”

So, we made do. Here’s what resulted from our shoot – which by the way, was cut short by J’s little dog running away! We think he was jealous of all of the love for Baby H and wanted some attention of his own, poor guy. Alright, the pictures! Feedback is, of course, always welcome. :)

Okay, so maybe she did fall asleep for a few shots. I love this girl to death! I hope to take many more photos of her, and maybe do another shoot when she’s around 6 months. For practice, of course. ;) I was so delighted to take these shots for my friends and their first born, and I am just pleased as punch that they love them as much as I do. How cute is she, fast asleep on her Dad’s hockey jersey? Congratulations once again, you guys, on your little princess.

Maternity Photography: Baby H

I am not taking up photography full time or anything, but I do enjoy taking photos for friends once in awhile. In my latest trip to my hometown of Powell River, I took some photos of my best friend, Jerra (and her husband Dale), who was 36 weeks pregnant at the time.

I put together some of my favourite shots into a little collage.

I can’t wait until Baby H arrives, and I get to meet her finally. Judging by her parents, she’s going to be drop-dead gorgeous! I could have taken photos all day. It was so beautiful out, and Jerra is unbelievably photogenic. And that is just the cutest belly ever.

The rest of the photo set is here. Feel free to take a gander and give me some feedback as well, as I am just learning by doing here with the whole photography thing.

My 2010 Olympic Experience

I can’t believe it taken me so long to write about this. Mind you, every single 17 days of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics has been a whirlwind, and life seems comparably dull now that it has come and gone.

It would have been much easier if I did a few posts throughout the Olympics, but alas, I am doing it all in one long post now that I have no plans taking up my evenings. This means that I will leave out a lot of details, but that’s okay.

I am not alone in my depression of the Olympics being over. My Facebook, Twitter, and blogging friends feel the same way.

Wow, where to begin? 7 years ago? Okay.

July 2, 2003. I would have been in Boston, Massachusetts working on a yacht at the time when the IOC announced in Prague, Czech Republic that Vancouver won the bid to host the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. I gloated to my American, British, Czech, Australian, and South African co-workers. Mind you, my South African friends later on won the bid to host the 2010 FIFA World Cup, so we both had reasons to celebrate.

Let’s bring things up a little closer to the present. June 12, 2009. My Mom e-mails myself, my two brothers and my sister-in-law with the subject line “Olympic Torch Bearer!” At the time, I don’t even think I realized what this meant, but I was so unbelievably excited for her. I wrote a blog post about it even!

Okay a little closer. February 3, 2010. Myself, my 2 brothers, my sister-in-law, and my nephew all made the trip from Vancouver, up to our hometown of Powell River for their Torch Relay Community Celebration. We had a few family members who performed in the Ceremony – Cousin Monica & her husband Max, and our Aunt Christine.

We then woke up at the crack of dawn to watch my Mom be the first torch bearer on February 4th, 2010 at 6:00am.

What an experience! Of course we have numerous photos (mine are here) and lots of video footage, and my brother Jordan even threw together a great video that still puts a lump in my throat everytime I watch it.

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After my Mom carried the torch, it was just a few short days until the Olympics. And what a blur.

On Thursday, February 11th, I got to see the torch for the second time with some good friends, as it was carried into David Lam Park at LiveCity Yaletown. We also saw the first of many fireworks displays.

The next morning, February 12th, I walked to work taking photos along the way, and I got to see the torch relay for the third time as it traveled east on Hastings St. A lot of security was was traveling with it, as it had to divert a protest at Cambie and Hastings.

Friday night I stayed in to watch the Opening Ceremonies. I thought they were a great representation of our country from coast to coast and terrific way to welcome the world to our fine city.

The rest of my time was spent hopping around town trying to get into venues, sometimes succeeding, sometimes not. I didn’t always have my camera with me, but did manage to snag a few shots here and there. Here’s a few of Sheralyn and I on February 14th on Granville Island where we visited the Atlantic Canada House.

February 16th, I’m pretty sure I went to the Irish House, but there’s no photographic evidence to share. I’m kidding. There is, just not on my camera.

On February 18th, I watched Canada beat Sweden in men’s hockey with my friend Erin and some of her out-of-town friends at Ceili’s. This was not one of them.

I was lucky enough to see two medal ceremonies. Unfortunately though, both ceremonies were ones when Canadians were not getting medals! Of all the luck! The first one I saw on February 19th, was the night Theory of a Deadman performed. Not a big fan of them, and our seats were waaaay up in the nosebleeds. We did see Aussie Torah Bright get her gold medal for snowboarding, though – sorry Rob! And we met up with more friends afterward at Dix Brew Pub where we watched John Montgomery win gold in Skeleton!

My friend Seanna invited me to go to the Russia vs. Slovakia women’s hockey game with her and some family friends on February 20th, because her friend Natalie plays on the Slovakia team and left her four tickets at will call! W00t! Lucky me.

February 21st was the day Team Canada played against the USA in men’s hockey and lost! My friends and I watched it at Shark Club, which was a crazy, crazy scene. We didn’t lose hope though, and even made friends with some Americans.

Photo credit: Amanda Haines

I had a few quiet nights after this, and I even skipped watching the semi-final men’s hockey match vs. Slovakia (because I knew they would win anyway), and went to my second medal ceremony on February 26th to see Great Big Sea perform. And I’m so glad I did, because they were fantastic. I think there a lot of Newfoundlanders in the audience because everyone was singing, clapping, and stomping along to the music. For some reason, this was a really happy moment for me. Maybe I should have been born on the East Coast…. Nah.

After the ceremony, my friend Erica and I snuck into Library Square to share in the celebration of Team Canada making it to the gold medal match for men’s hockey. There were a few Swedish girls who had the same plan, and they were nice enough to let me take their photo.

Finally, February 28th was the gold medal men’s hockey game of Canada vs. USA, and the day of the closing ceremony. My friends and I were up bright and early to watch the game at Earls Yaletown. We drank mimosas and had a delicious buffet breakfast, then sat back to watch the best hockey game ever.

Photo credit: Stacey Parsons

I have more Olympics photos that I still have to update here.

It was a great couple of weeks Canada (& the world!), and I’m never going to forget it. Thank you Vancouver for throwing such great party.