Another graduation . . .

It is so hard to believe that another graduation is just around the corner. When I first started teaching, 30 years seemed like an eternity. But now that I’m completing my 28th year as a community college instructor, 30 years seems like the blink of an eye. Each spring, we take pictures of our graduating class just a few weeks before graduation. It is one of the many signs that another year is quickly coming to a close. Although we know it’s time for these students to leave the nest and fly on their own, it’s a little hard to give them that last little push. I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to work with such bright, energetic, and caring professionals. Congratulations to the Dental Hygiene Class of 2007!



My turn in front of the camera . . .

I am in the process of updating my website. The picture in the “about me” section is old . . . very old. So, I decided to get my friends Karen and Lynn (aka Thelma and Louise) to take some head shots of me today. I’ve been taking pictures of them with their families for several years – but this was the first time they had taken pictures of me. And I must say, they enjoyed it a little too much! I told them I wasn’t too picky about my picture – I just wanted to look young, thin, and fun. Karen’s response was that all of their pictures show people who look young, thin and fun – so no problem. I should mention that Karen and Lynn shoot youth sports – and do a wonderful job. So, their average client is about 8, skinny as a rail, and happy to pose with a soccer ball on their knee. I, on the other hand, haven’t seen young in several decades. Nor have I ever, ever been thin. And being in front of the camera instead of behind it isn’t my idea of fun.

I set my camera settings the way I wanted them (because everyone knows I’m a control freak) and handed the camera off to Lynn. Karen’s job was to keep me entertained – which she certainly did. I tried several expressions but found I can’t really pull off a serious look. Especially when Karen is making me laugh – which she does without even trying. Some people have really great serious looks. When I try – I just look mean and angry.

And for all of you who hate to have your portraits made – but do it anyway so you’ll have a record for your children and grandchildren . . . I now feel your pain. I can’t say I enjoyed today’s shoot, but I’m so glad I did it. Since I’m always the one behind the camera, there were no pictures of me. Now there are – thanks to my very good friends.

Karen and Lynn did a wonderful job. Now I have to choose which picture to use on the website. So, I’m asking for your help. Use the comment section to vote and tell me which head shot you like the best. And check my website in a couple of weeks to see the updates.


Terri - April 2, 2007 - 9:34 pm

I like #3 the best!

Karen - April 2, 2007 - 10:23 pm

I like #3. Maybe we should have tried one with the soccer ball, though!

Allison - April 3, 2007 - 6:20 am

#3 too.

Andrea - April 3, 2007 - 7:58 am

I like #2 the best.

#4 scares me…it’s an annoyed look that some members of our family (never me, ofcourse) have probably seen one too many times.

Kathryn - April 4, 2007 - 6:47 pm

I think 2 is my favorite but I really like 3 as well. I agree with Andrea, 4 is the someone’s in trouble look :)

Katie - April 6, 2007 - 9:11 pm

I like #2 with #3 in a close second place.

Terry - April 22, 2007 - 7:51 pm

My vote is for #3. You have a simple smile that is classy and elegant. Perfect for a website that is advertising your business, Your photo’s are quite good.

Terri & Carolyn - April 25, 2007 - 2:24 pm

We like #3, but would love to see one of you with a soccer ball!

Megan - May 6, 2007 - 9:16 pm

I like 3 and 4 is the face you give me when i’ve pushed it a little too far. Like asking to go into one more shop “just to look.”

Terry G. - April 9, 2008 - 5:39 am

#3 The pose is sincere, not too much smile, not too little, Overall the best! #4 is too close up. #1 looks like a school photo where they cock your head to the side (why do they do that anyway)? #2 is okay but #3 is the most favored in this household!!

Bridal Expo

On Sunday, I traveled to Wilmington for the First Annual Port City Bridal Expo. The purpose of my trip was two-fold. First, I was going to see my daughter, Megan, in action. Megan is Assistant Manager at David’s Bridal at Mayfaire. This was her 2nd Bridal Show – and the first in which David’s supplied all of the clothing for the fashion show. Megan was large and in charge! She asked me to come and take some pictures of the fashion show, so I convinced my friends Barb and Christina to ride with me. Christina is getting married in December and this was her first bridal show. We spent time browsing booths filled with beautiful floral arrangements, delicious cakes, and every wedding gadget the mind can conceive. Christina was pleased to come home with some wonderful ideas for her wedding.

And I loved seeing Megan in a different light. It’s not often that I get to see her in her element. And WOW, was I impressed! There were times when she was growing up that I wondered if we would both survive. When she was 2 she would fall on the floor throwing tantrums and biting the carpet. I started to understand why some animals eat their young! Then, when she was 12 and flushed her retainer down the toilet, I just knew I would probably end up in prison for child abuse. But we both survived and I am extremely proud of the young lady Megan has become. She is exceedingly efficient and works hard at her job. I’m still amazed when I watch her working and interacting with clients and employees. What a joy to know that I must have done something right. Megan has turned out very, very well – and she still loves her mom.

Here are a few pictures from the Expo.


At the time I originally wrote this, Megan was Assistant Manager at David’s Bridal. She has since been promoted and is Manager. Congratulations, Megan! I’m very proud.

jen capone - March 22, 2007 - 6:53 am

how fun! love the ‘i’m getting married’ stickers. that’s cute!

Christina - March 22, 2007 - 9:27 pm

I couldn’t imagine having a wedding without you there, both as family and as our photographer! Thank you for a fun weekend in Wilmington!

Dick Coleman - March 27, 2007 - 7:31 am

Congratulations to Megan on a great job. Your photos of the bridal show are great and give a real feel for the day.


I spend WAY too much time on photography forums. The forums are places to go to learn photography techniques, business concepts, how to interact with clients . . . you name it, it’s probably been discussed on a forum. In fact, I spend so much time on the computer that the forum members have become my friends – only friends I’ve never met. It’s almost like having imaginary playmates – only these friends actually exist, just not in my neighborhood. But last week opportunity knocked on my door. Well, actually it sent me a personal message – but you know what I mean.

Charo, a forum member I’ve known for a couple of years online, wrote asking if I could take some head shots for her. Charo is an extremely talented photographer from Wilmington. She was one of the first people to call and offer help last year when I became ill and couldn’t fulfill the weddings I had contracted. I was excited that she had asked me to do this for her – but very nervous. And since my studio is the great outdoors – I also had to worry about the weather. As luck would have it, it started to rain just as Charo pulled into my drive. After visiting for a while and finally getting to know one another in person, we noticed the rain had stopped so we went to downtown Jacksonville to take some pictures. I had a great time – but never quite got over feeling nervous. Now I know how my graduates feel when I’m a patient in their chairs! Charo was fun and easy, though like most photographers she prefers to be on the other side of the camera. It was great getting to know her and I look forward to seeing her again very soon. Check out her work at


craig - March 20, 2007 - 5:10 pm

Nice to see you have a blog Elise. Rain isn’t all bad. I’d rather a cloudy sky to shoot under than bright sun and harsh shadows. A cloud-filled sky is God’s soft-box.

Charo rules! jealous you got to spend the day with her.



elisebeall - March 20, 2007 - 5:18 pm

Craig, it was you who made me get my butt in gear and get a blog up. Now, if I could just figure all this techie stuff out! It’s just too much for my old brain.

Yes, Charo rules!

portraitsbyteresa - March 20, 2007 - 6:22 pm

Those are so cool. Loving the blog.

Meg - March 20, 2007 - 8:57 pm

Awesome shots, Elise!

Nice job so far with the blog – can’t wait to see more!

jen - March 20, 2007 - 9:39 pm

i knew Charo when she was not really a brunette and not quite blonde. love her. i’m so glad you got together!

borrowedblue - March 20, 2007 - 9:51 pm

love the second one! though, she looks so serious and that’s not how I imagine her to be at all. :)


Sandra Lemin - March 20, 2007 - 10:35 pm

It is never too late to start! Loved the shots.

Julie Ambos - March 20, 2007 - 10:38 pm


lacey - March 21, 2007 - 7:56 am

Lucky Charo! Come take my headshots, Ms. Beall. :) I want to meet you all in person sometime soon.

mcgreevymarksphoto - March 21, 2007 - 7:58 am

These are great!!! I noticed the new avatar a couple days ago.

zofia - March 21, 2007 - 8:38 am

Wow, you’re blog looks great, Elise! Charo shots are awesome, I love the first one!

Bob D - March 21, 2007 - 10:05 am

A blonde Charo?!!! Photos? Come on Jen…. I know ya got some ;-)

Oh yeah…. and admit it Elise, “it’s Craig’s fault!” :-)

Allison - March 21, 2007 - 10:13 am

Those photos are gorgeous! I love your new blog as well.

audrasphotography - March 21, 2007 - 8:26 pm

Welcome to the world of blogging! I’ve never heard of this Charo woman before. Is she related to Jane?

kristin - March 22, 2007 - 1:19 am

HI, Elsie!

Just wanted to wave from West Texas and say Welcome to the Blogging World!

Love the shots of Charo!

vitae - March 22, 2007 - 9:55 am

These are awesome! It’s so neat to see a different side of Charo. Oh, and welcome to the blogosphere! :)

erin - March 28, 2007 - 10:08 am

charo rules. like, totally rules. and these are some nice photos of her. :)

I’m finally blogging!


I have wanted to start a blog for quite some time. I keep meaning to make myself sit down and do it – but since I am the best procrastinator this side of the Mississippi (and perhaps beyond) I’ve managed to put it off until now. And, I’m still having trouble figuring all of this technology out.

My goal is to have a blog so clients, friends and family can check out what’s going on with me personally and with Elise Beall Photography. This is the place I’ll post sneak previews of portrait sessions and weddings. And, I’ll post ramblings about whatever comes to mind.

I’ve been working on this blog for a week or so – and gotten almost nowhere. So, I was complaining about it to Puddin’, my precious grandcat who took up residence with me about a year and a half ago. Puddin’ was completely bored with the entire conversation – so this is how she responded.

Keep checking back – you never now what you’ll find.

Karen - March 20, 2007 - 8:48 pm

Love the Puddin’ picture! Can’t wait to check back and see what you’re up to next!

Miriam - March 20, 2007 - 8:49 pm

How fun!!! Love the picture of Mia. I wouldn’t have a clue how to set up a blog. I’m proud of you!

Miriam - March 20, 2007 - 8:50 pm

Make that “Puddin!” Can you tell I’m tired?

Julie Ambos - March 20, 2007 - 10:40 pm

That picture ROCKS!!!

Jessica - March 22, 2007 - 10:11 pm

I love the photo! Welcome to the wild world of blogs! :)

Terri - March 23, 2007 - 10:45 am

I love me some Puddin’!!!

Heather Mason - March 23, 2007 - 2:54 pm

Puddin’ is tooooo cute! Welcome to blogging!