Meet Karen

Hi there! I'm Karen, a photographer serving families and couples all over the world.






What’s in my Bag – National Camera Day


June 29th happens to be National Camera Day – a day to celebrate the invention of the camera and photography. The first photograph was taken in the early 1800’s, and thank goodness the camera is not a big bulky box anymore. The first surviving photograph was created by French inventor Joseph Nicephore Niepce and was the view from a window at his estate. It’s amazing to think of how far cameras and photography have come. Today, many people have a camera on their phone and carry it with them wherever they go. We hardly give a second thought to it, posting selfies and what we’re having for lunch to social media instantly.

To celebrate National Camera Day, I thought it would be fun to give you a peek inside What’s In My Bag – the camera I use, my favorite lenses, and what I can’t live without when I’m using my camera:


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I have tried many camera bags, and SHUTTERbag is by far my favorite. I have owned several of their leather bags, and while I love them all, this one is my all-time favorite photography purchase. I love being able to bring my camera out and about with me, and because there are several compartments, I can keep my personal items – wallet, keys, and all – separate from my nice camera gear. This keeps my gear safe from scratches, but it also keeps my expensive equipment hidden away whenever I’m just grabbing my wallet. And I adore that blue color!

2. Canon EOS 6D

I rocked the Canon EOS Rebel T4i for many years, but upgrading to the Canon 6D was a game changer for me. It is still pretty light in my hands, but the image quality is just amazing!

3. Sigma 35mm F1.4 ART Lens

The Sigma 35 mm ART is my go-to lens, and it is on my camera probably 85% of the time, especially when we are indoors. It can capture a wider more-documentary or landscape shot but can also handle getting in close for a portrait. Because of the 1.4 aperture, it can create that dreamy, blurry background and also works well in low-light situations, which is seems like half the year here in Ohio.

4. Sigma 85mm F1.4 ART Lens

I love using the Sigma 85mm ART lens outside when I have a little more room to move. And the compressed, blurry background this lens can capture makes me so happy. It is perfect for portraits!

5. Tamron SP 24-70mm Di VC USD Lens

The Tamron 24-70 was my first professional lens purchase, and we were BFFs for many years until I got the Sigma lenses above. Even though I don’t use it as much anymore, it’s the lens I grab when we are going on an adventure and I want versatility. Because it can zoom in and out, it’s helpful for times when I can’t move my feet to get closer or want to switch quickly between wide shots and close up shots.

6. Memory Cards

I always try to keep a couple memory cards in my bag. I never know if I’ll run out of space, or if a card will stop working. I like using the SanDisk Ultra cards as I’ve found they are quick, which is a necessity when I’m shooting my fast-moving kids.

7. Wireless Remote

This wireless remote is fun to have on hand when I want to get in the frame with my family too. It’s so small and easy to use, perfect to keep in my bag.

8. Lens Cleaning Wipes

I always keep a couple of these lens cleaning wipes in my bag for when my lenses or camera need a quick wipe. Whether we are at the beach or a sticky finger gets too close, they are so helpful to have.

9. Smarties

Smartes are my go-to treat for kids: my own or clients. They don’t melt, don’t make a big mess, and don’t coat the teeth and lips with bright colors.

10. Gum

A packet of this Peppermint Vanilla gum is in every bag I own, and I always like to have a way to freshen my breath while I’m out.

11. Clinique Lipstick

When I got married, the make up consultant suggested this Bamboo Pink lipstick, and I have been wearing it ever since! It’s my favorite shade!

12. iPhone 6

I am so thankful for the technology developments of the last hundred years that allow me to carry my iPhone in my back pocket and capture our every day moments. For tips on how to take great iPhone photos, read here!


What’s in your bag??? I’d love to hear your favorites!






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