Animals

Therapists and Dogs

 Rhonda Reinholz and her cute pooch.

Rhonda Reinholz and her cute pooch.

A couple years ago, a client told me about how people spend 2-3 times as much time on website with dogs on the homepage. I was incredulous at first, but she went on to explain how she had done her Ph.D. research studying how and why therapy website works (or don't). One of her discoveries was this dog-loving thing... just feature a dog on your website, and BOOM, folks stick around longer.

So I was shooting headshots with Rhonda Reinholz, a Madison therapist on the near west side, and we made sure to include some shots with her adorable dog. I don't think she's going to use them on her website like Amy Collins, but at least she'll have the canine option available in case things get slow sometime. 

Apple Picking at Door Creek Orchard

After moving back to Madison in 2010, we spent a few years exploring different apple orchards before landing on a place we loved last year: Door Creek Orchard. I think this orchard is pretty popular, but we go during the week around 4:30 and it's pretty quiet. Tom, one of the owners, is always really sweet with the boys, telling us about his unique Black Welsh Mountain sheep, letting Basti ride his tractor, and even providing dinner recommendations. And the setting here is pretty idyllic, with a gorgeous farmhouse and barn overlooking the expansive wetlands below.

If all these things vanished, however, I would still come here for the fantastic apples alone. Door Creek grows an Empire apple that is currently my very favorite eating apple. We bought $35 worth, thinking they would last us into December, but they are already almost gone. A testament to their flavor, or our gluttony... you decide.

Freezing

There was a buzz about the neighborhood about legions of tundra swans off Yahara Place Park, so I took a late afternoon break to go look. There were probably 300 swans and some tagalong ducks on the small pieces of open water, resting on their way to warmer climes. Not being much of a birder, I was distracted by the soup-thick sky and the incredible blue tones the fog and snow were creating. And the lake itself was caught in that short window between ice and water, showing off a gorgeous abstract quilt of snow and slush and ice. Every season has its beauties and I felt lucky to catch this scene right then.