Loveland Garden Tour 2014

20140628 Loveland Garden Tour-67_WEBWhat a fun time we had this morning at the Loveland Garden Tour, held to benefit the local group Loveland Youth Gardeners.

If you’re apt to feel garden envy, this may not be the tour for you; but if you enjoy gathering ideas for beautifying your own slice of heaven then this is the place to be on a gorgeous Colorado morning!

The Loveland Garden Tour is an annual event which allows folks to visit a handful of impressive private-residence gardens that have been dotted with local artists’ work. You may not be able to bottle up the gorgeous gardens and take them home, but you are welcomed to purchase any of the artist pieces you fancy. In fact, I couldn’t help myself and bought a beautiful antique brass porch light in which the glass covers have been replaced by works of art, curated and assembled by Loveland artist Olivia Lowe. When the lantern is off, you see delicate, French seed packet designs and when the lantern is on you can see comical vintage American seed packets (Mr. Cabbage Head and other hand-drawn veggie characters) superimposed underneath. I am mad about it! I’ll have to post a photo once I have it in my hot little hands.

Healthy Habits

The vibrant wellness coach, Erin Statter, was looking to get a new set of head shots for her website and upcoming ebook.  We had a fun and whirlwind 30 minute session in downtown Loveland last week and  got a few shots that made her smile that radiant smile of hers.

Check out Well Rebellion for more info on Erin’s services:


Loveland Weekend Binge Film Fest

While we’re talking about videography and films there’s a fun fledgeling film fest that has been launched in Loveland called the Weekend Binge Film Fest. Mass FX Media, a Loveland film company, has created this 48-hour fest for those who want to keep their already rockin’ skills up to par, as well as those who have little to no experience but are interested in film. You can join as an individual or as an entire film crew team – everyone of all ages and fortes from prop-masters to actors, directors to make-up artists are encouraged to join in for the fun.

Check out the very first short created in June’s Weekend Binge Film Fest, where yours truly even joined in and tried her hand at acting… I guess it’s a good thing I have photography to fall back on 😉  If you or anyone you know would be interested in participating in the next leg of the fest in August, contact Shawna Schultz at 

Phase Trakker

I love meeting people who are passionate about what they do and have a great sense of how they would like to show off their products to the world! Meet my new friends, EDM, from Fort Collins Colorado. The first product EDM wanted to show off to the world is the Phase Trakker – a revolutionary high-tech tool used by the rugged linemen who maintain our electrical grids. The good folks over at EDM hired me to shoot and edit their Phase Trakker advert that they will use to stand apart from the crowd. I had an amazing time with these wonderful folks, learned so much, and can’t wait for the next product project. Check it out! (those of you who are High Plains Drifter fans will appreciate the opening scene):


PhaseTrakker Final (Web Version) from Alanna Brake on Vimeo.

Food Photography




Being a photographer in a smaller city usually means even if you have a specific niche you prefer, and excel at, you will also be shooting gigs in just about any niche that comes your way. This can either be daunting or you can choose to embrace the challenge of mixing things up a bit. Any time I’m about to do a shoot in a specialized genre of photography, I love to check out Google Images and soak in examples of other professionals’ work to get a fresh look at what I need to accomplish.

By looking at all these images you’ll be able to pick out crucial details to remember. For example, today’s shoot will be for the Northern Colorado branch of Barista Pro Shop and we’ll be doing closeups of the bakery goodies they’ll be offering this season (yum!). So, by searching for “professional dessert photography” I got a whole slew of awesome, tantalizing images to sift through. Once I was done drooling, I decided which images drew me in the most and then made notes on  angles, lighting, props, accent colors, and so on.

After looking at the example photos I’ll often set up a test shoot to practice with the new information I’ve gathered. The photos above are a few shots of yesterday’s early morning latte I caught while playing with lighting options and looking for fun angles to shoot from. I was going for “urban hipster latte” (hey, that could so be a thing!), what do you think?

If you’re interested in learning more about food photography here’s a link from a fantastic blogger/food photographer with some tips and equipment suggestions:

Cheers! and here’s to hoping you are fortunate enough to get to eat the desserts you shoot 🙂

Barista Pro Shop

BPS is a supply company for Northern Colorado and New Hampshire that delivers coffee, syrups, tasty noshables, and more to area coffee shops. They are also a client of Mueller & Associates. Jay Weller, the owner, was kind enough to pose for a few shots to accompany his testimonial in the ad campaign. It was a real pleasure getting to work with him.

We did the shoot in the BPS warehouse break/meeting room. Just look at that espresso bar! I was so jealous the employees get to enjoy that awesomeness every day! 😉 Maybe I’ll have to buy a machine like that for my studio… you know, for entertaining clients, of course. Not because I’m a java-holic or anything…


And while we’re chatting about the love of coffee, check out local artist Scott Freeman’s recent blog post How I Went From Coffee-Hater To Coffee-Lover I had a good chuckle over it.

PUSH Industries

One of my favorite shoots I’ve had. (Do I say that about all my assignments?)

On a sunny 55˚January day we trekked up the Backbone trail near the mouth of the Thompson Canyon so that pro mountain biker and owner of PUSH Industries, Darren Murphey, could repeatedly run jumps and whizz past me at what I would guess was 30mph. Maybe it wasn’t that fast, but as he came barreling down the hill, passing me within 2-3 feet, it sure got my adrenaline pumping.

This was my first go at high-speed flash photography and I learned so much from the experience. I cannot wait for another shoot of this sort to apply the tricks I learned. My new Einstein lights held up well under the pressure, though I thought the plastic shell was going to melt right off of them by the end.

Darren was a great sport, and had endless energy to ride up and down the hills for us. While we walked to our location he taught the stylist, the client and myself some gnar biking world terms. My favorite was find your line, which means you have to find the best path for yourself in order to achieve the ultimate ride.  Deep. Who’d have thought philosophy and mountain biking go hand in hand?