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some way for me to be in two places at once sometimes. I love my married life in Japan and I wouldn’t trade that for anything but yet there are such wonderful people that I am sad I can’t be around more often. The Hofert family are in no way new subjects for me and my camera and I am just so happy that on this short trip back to the states I had the chance to meet the new little man, Zachary, and photograph them all again. There were so many precious moments including watching Grace hold her little brother and then bang away on the piano. I’m so grateful for the family and friends who have allowed me into their lives to photograph these new stages of life as God brings them. These friends and family are a comfort to me and something familiar…since I realized I said goodbye to “familiar” when I married my military man :). God is so good to me and has blessed me more than I deserve. He has also blessed the Hoferts and I’m sure they would say that they heartily agree.
Please do not copy/paste images
seriously they have really been there for me. I can’t thank them enough for opening their home to me and letting me literally crash here while Lee has been away. Being married to a man in the military has been challenging, and when he is gone there is a big piece of me that is too. Sometimes it’s overwhelming and makes me so sad and like clockwork Amy will call me and tell me to just get myself to their place! I’m so grateful for their friendship. These two are a great team together and I’m hoping that these photos below have done them justice. They are people I respect and love. My experience here in Japan would have been much different without them. I am so excited about their ministry and if you have’t checked out their website please do so by clicking here. They have taken on a big challenge here in Japan, but I know that the Lord is going to use them because they are willing. I feel blessed to have known them and getting to photograph them was a privilege.
After taking all those photos we were hungry so we went to this Okonomiyaki restaurant that is decorated to look like “old Japan”. It’s super cute and needless to say the Okonomiyaki is AMAZING!
Kazuaki who goes by “Shio” and his sweet girl, Sae, made my day when I got to photograph them! What an amazing and sweet couple these two make. I have been dying to photograph anyone here and I jumped at the chance to get them out into downtown Jiyugaoka for a short impromptu photo session. They actually were with me that day to help me get an issue resolved with my Japanese cell phone. It had not been working for a few days and when I tried to call of course the operator would say something in Japanese that I didn’t understand…lol oh the joys :). Well, these two kindly accompanied me on my trip to the phone company to figure out the issue that I had. It was a little tricky finding the place, but honestly I don’t know how anyone finds anything around here. I’m convinced that these people have a sixth sense about locating places and I will just never have it. There are so many little places and you think that you have checked everywhere but low and behold you’ll be standing right in front of the place you’ve been trying to find for the past 15 min. So things took quite a while at the phone store but these two hung with me the whole time and were so kind to make sure I left with everything I needed. I’m not surprised though because that’s the way the people of Japan are! So helpful and kind. They know how to show true care for others. I’m excited to share a few of the images I got of these two and also a sneak peek into their sweet relationship.
Thank you so much Shio and Sae for all your help that day!!!
Finally got the chance to do my first unofficial photo session of a friend here in Tokyo :). It was a short session, but it was great to dust of the camera and get back to doing what I love! Amy is such a servant, and since I have been in Japan she has been such a huge help to me. One of the most hospitable people I know and just happy to help any way she can. I met Amy at Word of Life Bible Institute back in 2006 in NY while I was studying there for a year. We might have had a total of three conversations and a few “hey how you doing’s” but that’s about it. Our paths didn’t cross again until she found out through another girl we both know that I was moving to Japan. Amy got right on FB and sent me a message saying how excited she was and that it was an answer to her prayers that a Christian American girl was coming to Japan :). We skyped a few times before I moved here and she gave me all kinds of great advice about what life was like here. I was so thankful for the connection and just the blessing that it was knowing I had a friend waiting for me when I moved! Amy has been just that! Throughout this whole time she has shown true hospitality when I needed a place to stay (because I didn’t want to stay in my apartment alone after the earthquake) and has done so much to help me adjust to living here. We are both from the South and find it humorous that we now find ourselves living in one of the most metropolitan places in the world….it’s CRAZY I know! She is dedicated to serving the Lord here in Japan by standing with her husband and being the best helpmate to him she can be. I’m sure anyone who has moved to another country can attest to the difficulty of living where they don’t speak your native language. It’s not always easy and there are many frustrations involved and the challenge of learning the language. I’m so excited about what I see the Lord doing in her and I just wanted to thank her for the great influence and blessing she has been to me.
Love ya girl!
Amy’s last name in Japanese 🙂
I saw this on a budding photographers facebook and I wanted to share it with all my fans. I also want to dedicate it to all the young photographers that I’ve had the privilage of talking to/working with. You all are amazing and I’m so proud of you. Can’t wait to see all that you do with Photography and how you let God use it for His glory!
“One photograph- so many words, emotions, and thoughts attached. One camera- so many features and functions. One person- so many opinions, views, and personalities. Put the three together and you have….. the art of photography.
People take pictures. Photographers capture an image. Many people undervalue the work of a photographer. They say to themselves, “If I really wanted to, I could take a great picture.” But the problem lies in the fact that they can’t. Sure they may be in the right place at the right time with the right camera, but a genuine photographer understands that the image they are about to freeze must convey a feeling and have a meaning. It must be taken at exactly the right angle with the perfect amount of light, exposure, depth of field, and contrast put together to make the viewer be left in awe, excitement, or any varied emotion. To just a picture-taker, the picture they produce is just a memory to put on facebook or share with others. They are happy if the picture came out clear, and that people think it’s “cool”. But a photographer’s true joy comes when the photograph produced brings the same emotion, the same feeling, the same spark to the viewer as it did to the photographer himself.”
– Courtney Swingle Love Hope Faith Photography