Shooting with Sonja (and the embarrassing story of my bad day)

Last month, I had a really bad day. I was feeling overwhelmed in my personal life and unproductive in my professional life. As a result, I impulsively deleted both of my Facebook accounts.
I felt that I needed a break, and thought that if I deleted my accounts, I could avoid some of the people and situations which were causing me stress.

Immediately afterwards, I took a drive into the forest (nearly getting my car stuck on a muddy back trail), and pulled over. Then I cried. A lot. It’s embarrassing to admit, but it’s the truth. I immediately began to reflect on all of the negatives that were weighing heavily on my mind, until all I could do was sob into my steering wheel. Pretty pathetic, right?

The thing is, I needed to have that moment (okay, it was more like an hour), to release all of the negativity and let it come out. I felt ridiculous sitting in my boiling hot car on the side of a tiny dirt road in the forest, but I needed the solitude. I’m glad that I recognized the start of a breakdown and that I dealt with it the way I did, instead of venting my frustrations towards someone else.

And afterwards, I felt better.
Of course, I realized that a photography break wouldn’t make me feel any better- In fact, it would make me feel much worse to try and give up something I love.

So I drove home and reactivated my accounts, no harm done.

Later that night, I received a Facebook message from Sonja, asking if I would like to work with her.
I was basically ecstatic. I have wanted to photograph Sonja since coming across her portfolio, over 2 years ago. She has an absolutely amazing look, is signed with Wilhelmina in New York, and has worked with one of my favourite photographers, Lara Jade. (!!!)
Of course I told her yes,yes,yes!

We immediately got in contact with Cheri Chung to see if she would be interested in doing the hair and make-up for us. I was so happy she was available to help us out- She did an amazing job, as always. This was my first time working with Cheri in months. Unfortunately, she wasn’t able to join us for the shoot, but I’m so grateful for her beautiful work. Thanks, Cheri!

When I learned about Sonja’s plan for the shoot, I was even more excited about working with her. She was interested in doing a more laid-back, candid-type shoot around downtown Kelowna.
This was something new for me- I am usually a planner when it comes to location, and I like to pre-visit locations before shoots to get an idea for the photos.

I really enjoyed hanging out with Sonja, walking around town and shooting in any location that we found interesting.
This shoot gave me the chance to try a different style of shooting, which I loved.

Sonja was amazing to work with. She was so fun to photograph and I was laughing during the entire shoot. She’s down to earth, sweet and super friendly.

I wanted to share some of the “Behind the Scenes” type photos from this shoot, to give you an idea of our day.

We spotted Justin Bieber in the window of Shopper’s Drug Mart, and asked the lady if we could take a photo with him. We noticed his leg was heavily chained, and when we asked about it, she told us that the first JB cut-out had been stolen within a week of being in the store!


While we were leaving Shopper’s, we were approached by Jerome, from Jamaica, who also wanted a photo with Sonja:


We picked up some ice cream to use as a photo prop:


I guess we took too long reviewing the ice cream photos afterwards, because the rest of Sonja’s ice cream started to melt like crazy.


We then explored some of the downtown Kelowna businesses, including Frock:


Mosaic Books, to look at fashion magazines, of course:


and one of the local thrift stores:


And here are the final images:




Thanks for the awesome day, Sonja! I loved working with you.
Also, huge thanks again to CheriΒ for her beautiful hair and make-up work!

Thanks for reading!

If you are interested in following my work, you can do so here:





6 thoughts on “Shooting with Sonja (and the embarrassing story of my bad day)

  1. I know what you mean, if you are already stressed out sometimes facebook doesn’t help – I almost deleted mine but instead just ignored it for two months, now I’m back but feel a little bad because I found out while I was gone one of my friends who lives away is pregnant and I completely missed the announcement (oops) but I’m better now – and I feel more equipped to deal with facebook and it’s chaos (and I found out there are filters you can use, brilliant!). This post is amazing, thanks for sharing and your photo session looks like it was a lot of fun and yielded some amazing results πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks so much for your comment!

      Aww- That’s the problem with deleting Facebook, there’s always the risk of missing something important. I hope your friend was understanding!

      It can be so tempting to give Facebook up sometimes, though.
      A few years back, I spent three months in Europe and I absolutely loved the feeling of having no phone/computer… It was very freeing.

      I’m glad you are feeling better now! So am I. At least we know we aren’t missing anything, now. πŸ™‚

      and thank you- It was a lot of fun! πŸ˜€

      1. She was very understanding, she even joked that the baby was mine πŸ˜‰ lol! I said wow, I’m very sneaky – I didn’t even know that as a woman I could do that to other women, but thanks! You learn something new every day (she has quite the sense of humour).

        I also enjoy when we go out to my bf’s parent’s farm, it’s a total disconnect from electronics too, they have internet but I don’t bother with it – like you say, it’s a nice break!

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