To the real superheroes.

Happy mother’s day. To all mothers out there- know you are appreciated. Know you are loved. Your sacrifice does not go unnoticed, your love does not go unfelt.

To every woman who has carried and birthed a child. To every woman who has never heard an appropriate THANK YOU. To all mommas with dirty shirts, wrinkled dresses and undone hair- know that you are seen; you are noticed.
To give selflessly, to love unconditionally, to put someone else’s well-being and happiness before your own. To possess the innate desire to accommodate and satisfy another, while watching your days get longer and your nights get shorter. To YOU I give the credit. Your hearts I salute. Your sufferings I treasure.

Cheers to the lack of structure and the unprecedented schedules. Cheers to the tears shed in private and the pain felt in secret. Cheers to the sacrifice, the occasional relinquishment of your own dreams and plans. You are seen. Momma, you are noticed. And today is about YOU.

The plans for this Mother’s Day’s story wasn’t this. We had brainstormed and creatively planned the course of this story. The colors and the joy; the playfulness captured within the images. We had worked out the perfect plan. A plan which I had fit it into my busy and inflexible schedule. We had the story, the interview and the moodboard; we had a strategy. But life never happens this smoothly, at least not for the mother. The life of a mother is about the constant change and adjustment, the constant growing, learning and praying for a new capacity to undertake circumstances.

When my son became sick on the day of our elaborate shoot and story I was again reminded of the fact that my life is unpredictable because its not my own. No matter my plans for this shoot my priority is not a selfish one.

When looking at my child, everything gains perspective. No responsibility comes before; no deadline is relevant. But isn’t that what life is about anyways? To be given the gift of love greater than the love for yourself. I would like to say I apologize for the fact that my Mother’s day post didn’t turn out as I planned, but truth is, I have no time to apologize as I need to go be with my son.

All mothers out there- I salute you.

Shot by Hannah Burton

An explosion of Color.

I love changing things up. There are always so many creative thoughts going through my mind, so many different vibes on my inspiration board. Why not be both classic and silly? Play with both beautifully simple black and whites and explore explosions of color? If we have been given the freedom and capacity to create, the free will to choose love and recognize beauty, why wouldn't we open our minds and hearts to the bigger picture rather than confining ourselves in the "safe"?

Its all abut perspective. Abraham Lincoln once said “we can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” We complain about this generation that has become so promiscuous and irreverent, but what are we actually doing to shape this generation? Are we even relevant and appealing?

When I speak about creativity I don't only speak of art. Creativity, to me, is to have the understanding of how to not necessarily adapt but help SHAPE our culture. Create a new beautiful, define the new "goal", live by the moral standards you say you believe in and present that as the new cool. Figuring out how to align your life with the Word while having an impact  and understanding of the World. Why try to separate and divide what is meant to be united for the same purpose? Isn't our duty to utilize the tools God has graced us with to glorify him in our individual ways? But for whatever reason we still choose to play safe. Culture doesn't define us, we define culture. The closer we get to our creator the more creative we get. The more creative we get, the more we can help shape culture. 
“How is it, that for many of us, being a good Christian is nothing more than being a good person? The entire focus of our faith has been the elimination of sin, which is important but inadequate; rather than the unleashing of a unique, original, extraordinary, wonderfully untamed, faith.” 
― Erwin Raphael McManus

Whoever tells the best story shapes the culture. 

Shot by Hannah Burton
Art Directed by me

The right to create.

Whoever has worked with me would have heard me say "I want interesting-NOT pretty" at some point. Im usually drawn to angles that give you unusually long limbs, partial covering of the face, unexpected outfits... I love contrast and diversity. I love creating, expressing, thinking outside the box. Our ability to create is a gift from God. 

Anybody who has been following my work knows that Im a fan of a shadow/light play. Its not always the obvious beautiful portrait I'm looking for, but I'm always looking for something interesting. Something that causes me to 'double-take'. Im a thinker- give me something to analyze.

I believe that God gave us a unique ability to express ourselves through art. When it comes to art there is no right and wrong; all is relative. Each is unique. There are many "artists", but they are all individual. How interesting. How perfectly tailored. Sounds exactly like something God would do. We were uniquely created with a unique ability to create. All for his glory. It doesn't even matter whether or not we like each other's "art", each other's creation. When it comes to art, God made it individual, he made it a heart and a passion matter- theres no right and wrong, it is all relative. God chose to give us the right to worship him with our art.

Shot by Hannah Burton

The Story Behind The Shot- Balmain

These photos were a part of a little story shot in England. During this shoot, we ran out of time and ended up having to shoot the last look in the elevator- which is hilarious. We were all laughing so hard at the challenge it was to keep the door open and get a shot before that horrible beeping noise begins, to no hoard the elevator all to ourselves and be respectful of the other 20-and-some other floors on the building, AND to not get the photographer's reflection on the mirror. LOL. Came across these photos and they made me laugh. I love the memories photos bring.

x Es



Dress - Balmain at Layers London
Shoes - Saint Laurent
Ring - Joubi

Good Mom vs Bad Mom. When We Feel Conflicted.


London Town. That's where I should be right now. But I'm not, I'm in NY. Nothing wrong with that, as New York is my favorite city in the world and its also my home. The problem is that it's not where I should be right now. I should be in London.

My Personal posts are usually about a conviction, a revelation or an advice. About people I love and things dear to my heart. But this one is about a struggle. On this post I have no answers really; on this post I have questions, thoughts, and conflicts... But hey, Im a real person too. And I've obviously  caught the writing bug recently, so I guess I'll share some thoughts. 

This new season as a mom has been incredible. For those of you who don't know, the little blonde, curly haired angel I often post photos of is my son, my only child. My pride and joy, my everything. And he also drives me crazy. Sometimes I want to lock him in the closet and put earmuffs on. Of course I don't do that, I just said that to add to the shock factor and make you gasp and instantly think 'Oh my gosh! How could she even say that?!' The answer is simple: because I love shocking people with reality and honesty so that they don't need to live their lives thinking they're alone. Even if I get a little backlash for it... I can handle it... Im not worried about all of the better-than-thou, self-righteous, know-better you's. All y'all can just take your concerns to the nearest blog or social media outlet made available to you. Im concerned with those beating themselves up because nobody has ever told them they are not alone. 

Well, I have never locked Zion in a closet and put earmuffs on- yet- but let me tell you what I HAVE done though, which will probably SHOCK you- specially those of you with no children, and those of you mythical 'good moms' who seem to obviously have it all figured out. I have, more than once, brought my hands to my face and thought 'What have I done!' as I either pace around in despair or stand there paralyzed at the thought that I will, indeed, have to deal with "this" for the rest of my life. Yea- I said it. Judge me. But do remember me when you find yourself doing the same. 

 Being a mother brings out stuff you never knew you had inside of you. An ability to love that you never thought possible before, a level of selfishlessness you had never experienced before, a grade of sleeplessness you never thought one could survive before. But we love it and wouldn't trade it for the world. We would change everything about it but yet, change nothing at all. What does that even mean? I'm not really sure, but that's how I feel.

I'm sure the majority of moms share the sentiment, even though many would be too afraid to admit it and end up sounding like a 'bad mom'. So here you go. I'm saying it first so that you can understand that you, dear friend, are not alone; and feeling like that from time to time doesn't make you a bad mom.

What makes someone a bad mom? More importantly, what makes someone a GOOD MOM? I recently read this by Aylet Waldman, and got an honest kick out of it.

When I polled an unscientific sampling of my friends and family, they had no trouble defining what it meant to be a good father. A good father is characterized quite simply by his presence. He shows up. In the delivery room, at dinnertime (when he can), to school recitals and ball games (whenever it's reasonably possible). He's a good provider who is not above changing a diaper or wearing a Baby Bjorn. He's a strong shoulder to cry on and, at the same time, a constant example of how to roll with the punches. This definition seems to accommodate, without contradiction, both an older, sentimentalized Father Knows Best version of a dad and our post-Free to Be You and Me assumptions. However, my polling sample had a difficult time describing a good mother without resorting to hyperbole, beneath which it's possible to discern a hint of angry self-flagellation. 

"Mary Poppins, but biologically related to you and she doesn't leave at the end of the movie." 
"She lives only in the present and entirely for her kids." 
"She has infinite patience."
"She remembers to serve fruit at breakfast, is always cheerful and never yells, manages not to project her own neuroses and inadequacies onto her children, is an active and beloved community volunteer; she remembers to make playdates, her children's clothes fit, and she does art projects with them and enjoys all their games. And she is never too tired for sex." 

She's everything that I'm not.

These responses might be colored by the fact that my polling sample, despite containing a moderate amount of racial, religious, and socioeconomic diversity, was composed of women of approximately the same age (mid-thirties to early forties) and the same level of education (which can be described, succinctly, as "more than they use"). Nonetheless, the common elements in the responses make a compelling statement both about the pervasive power of the antiquated June Cleaver vision of motherhood and about how badly we fall short. 


So wait. If the single defining characteristic of iconic good motherhood is self-abnegation, her child's needs come first and their health and happiness are her primary concern. They occupy all her thoughts, her day is constructed around them, and anything and everything she does is for their sakes. Her own needs, ambitions, and desires are relevant ONLY when in relation to theirs. If a good mother takes care of herself, it is only to the extent that she doesn't hurt her children. A good mom MUST be able to figure out how to find time for herself, but only if its without detriment to her child's feelings of self-worth. 

How is any of that even achievable?! Lets just talk about how this piece of writing is about to be posted in just a bit, at about 7:55 am, and you KNOW it didn't just take me a couple of minutes to write this. But that is when a good mother does her own thing, right? After her baby goes to sleep and before he wakes up. Because when he wakes up its his time, until, of course, I have to go work. And then when I get done its their time again. And then I will write you more posts at 5am tomorrow... Oh, the unreasonable pressures of life.

Being a good father is a reasonable and attainable goal. You show up, you support, you're physically there (when you can), you provide. I think I'm a MUCH better father than I am a mother... 

Its been the best season but its also been a difficult season. As I said, I should be in London right now.

Shot by Hannah Burton

Let there be Neon!

Colors, sequins, patterns, neon. Its a lot going on but I like the vibrancy and life of it all. I was walking by this neon light shop, and as soon as I saw how cool the place was my creative mind went on a thousand mile an hour run. I knew it would be perfect for this story, complementing the super modern and cool pieces from Shop3NY. So much fun shooting this, I really hope you like it. I say less is more most of the time, but sometimes more is more! ;) x

Location: Let There Be Neon
Shot by Hannah Burton
Wearing: Set by Altaf/ Black sequin dress by American Retro/ Purple sequin dress by Romeo Hunts/ Red top and skirt by Greedilous/ White top by 3nyred with Skirt by Again and Camera phone case by Moschino