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SUNDAY STORIES by Lisa Haukom 5.14.23 Weekly lifestyle, and creative resources.

Updated: May 21, 2023

It looks and smells like summer outside, finally!!

The light is golden perfection, the boats are back in the lake, and paddlers are merrily passing by while I watch from my new home office. Why is this significant? Out of pure necessity, I've relocated to a corner of the primary bedroom to record the Goldenbrand Pod launching this summer. It's a tiny corner and my desk is a three-footed antique pie crust table (not the most stable desk), but I'm able to focus here. After testing several mic's and the acoustics around the house, this spot is best.

It's also the spot where I first sat over two years ago for my self-assigned 30 day Self Portrait Challenge. By the way, did you catch the reveal of those photos on IG stories last week? The memories of that time have been flooding back. The feeling of wanting to get it right, wanting them to be conventionally beautiful, and the acute awareness that what I was doing felt indulgent. Aren't portraits traditionally reserved for people of importance?

It's amazing how quickly we can heal and integrate something so deeply unsettling, like our photo, with a clear intention, support and accountability. I had to create my own accountability and community for that 30-day period—luckily SPS members have that aspect built-in for them.

Thank you for trailing down memory lane with me this Sunday morning. While several projects are still under wraps and earmarked for publication, I am excited to reveal a new client shoot with you!




Proof that every photoshoot works out exactly as it was supposed to.

Believe it or not, it's possible to have too much runway before a photoshoot. A large part of my job as your photographer is ensuring we have enough time to plan each element and we are on the same page creatively and visually. So when my client steps into frame, everyone knows how the day will flow, we get the shots we need but also have room for spontaneous magic. But sometimes clients have too much runway before photoshoot and doubts begin to creep in. Thoughts of what was I thinking booking a shoot?!?!, to second-guessing everything from location, to wardrobe, and props. And that's okay. It's all perfectly normal and part of the process. When my client Tricia found herself with too much runway and wide open space ahead of her she found comfort in filling it. We reitierated wardrobe options, prop choices, shooting locations, and even the time of day for the shoot. But on shoot day, when Tricia stepped into the frame after having all the options in the world at her finger tips...she let it all go. Comfortable in her art studio space, she understood she was of importance in the frame. She was enough to bring the photo to life. We played with the dappled studio light and were completely spontaneous for our session together. I hope you enjoy the images!

Robin Davisson Female Abstract Artist Photography


Can you get to that?

Lisa Haukom Goldenbrand photography


Self-portraits are an excellent way to evolve your self perception. Each time I wrap a session and sit down to look at the photos, I see myself in an entirely new way—with increased compassion and satisfaction. SPS members are encouraged to share images they feel are unsuccessful along with the ones they feel most proud of. Both offer an opportunity to expand our perception of what a successful image needs to look like. We learn why we prefer certain images over others and that successful don't mean perfect. When the only restriction is that you must be in the photo, you can do whatever you like and it doesn't need to be perfect.


We first enjoyed this cocktail on a perfect summer afternoon at our Grandparents summer coastal getaway in Solana Beach, and have been experimenting with this libation ever since. Like the cocktail, Alice was sweet, tart, and supremely strong with an unexpectedly delightful girlishness about her. I've amended this to use the abundant fresh blackberries from our yard, as they grow like dandelions here in Oregon, and petite wild frozen blueberries from Trader Joes. Add your favorite brand of rum, a dry Prosecco, dust off your cocktail shaker (or mason jar) and you're good to go.


Weekly visual inspiration and mood boards.

Having a pink moment this week as I look into upgrading my new office nook. These colors are making me immensely happy right now.

Photographers Choice.

Extra flair for your week. Click below to visit. xoxo L.

Still on the hunt for a gift for Mom? Pop over to Lacson Ravello and snag something she will love! Use code THE_GOLDEN_BRAND_CO for 20% off.

The Mystic Biz Summit is coming and we have something special for you!

Focaccia with rosemary and shallots.

I've been feeling like my creativity in the kitchen is flagging. Very tempted to join The Club.

Reframing the “cone of shame” for dogs. So cute!

Welcoming the delightful shade of green that’s been popping up all over in home design. (I have used this to similar effect and have yet to tire of it!)

Applauding the individual who came up with this branding and marketing!

I knew there was a reason I never jumped on the Birkenstock trend. Love these.


Have a question? Sunday Stories subscribers may submit them here.

Q. Hey Lisa, Thanks for this amazing newsletter. I look forward to it every Sunday with my tea and pup Frankie. I've seen your photography on Instagram and can't believe you shoot everything with an iPhone! I'd like to start sharing more of pottery studio online and take my own photos but they next quite turn out like I'd hoped. Any tips to make them less mundane? — Maisey

A. Well hello Maisey and Frankie! Thank you for spending your weekends with me, I'm so appreciative. I could get pretty technical here, giving you options for lighting, angles, and composition but there is so much you can do to prep your eye before you even pick up the camera. I recommend spending time browsing your favorite inspiration sources, (may I recommend Pinterest ?) as a good all-around place to begin. Set up your account first because you are about to pin like crazy. Pin everything you feel drawn to as you browse. Don't stop to overthink it. Once you have 40-60 pins, go back through them and note what you like about each one. Is it a low angle, the quality of light, centered composition, or maybe use of chromatic color? Break each one down and see if you spot a golden thread running through each images. When you are ready, select one and try to recreate it in your own space, thoughtfully choosing the time of day and what you include in the final image. If you'd like to learn how to elevate your photography through self portraiture, join the Self Portrait Studio. Our next challenge begins May 18th.



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