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Blog

Our little space to inspire, encourage, and share our heart for you and our company.

Emily Valdez

This beautiful ladie's name is Shaye! She is a 21 year old photographer from Jupiter, Florida. Shaye's main passions are lifestyle and portrait photography with a mix of natural light and dreamy colors!

This girl has shot multiple mini campaign's for YIREH and we had to get to know a little more about her!

Is photography your full time gig, or do you have any side hustles?

I was a server at a restaurant for a while, then one day my heart told me it was time to move on and put every ounce of my being into my photography business. Once I quit my other job and gave 100% of my attention to my true passion, that’s when incredible opportunities started coming into my life. It’s crazy that when you open up and put your excitement, happiness & loving energy toward EXACTLY what you want, it will absolutely come to you. Law of attraction is real, guys. 

What is the biggest challenge for you in pursuing a career in photography?

I think so far the biggest challenge for me is how sweet, caring and giving I am. I have a really tough time putting on my business pants and negotiating with clients. I find it hard to put a price on what my time, energy and creativity is worth. However, I have learned an incredible amount about how to run and manage a business, and have found the balance between being kind, but also stern when I need to be. 

Your photos are so creative! How do you come up with your concepts for photo shoots?

Well, thank you! I spend a lot of time looking at the work of photographers that really inspire me. I love making mood boards, location scouting, and finding that killer light. Most of my photos are taken in very simple places, but the way I edit is what changes everything. 

Do you ever feel pressure or hindered in the photography world for number one, being so young, and number two being a woman? 

I actually think it’s an incredible advantage! Being young, and the same gender as most of the models I work with makes it very easy to click and relate. I know how I would want to be photographed, so I know how other girls like to look in photos as well. Being a young girl in a profession dominated by men, I felt that I wasn’t taken seriously for a while. I used it as motivation & now I feel like I’ve gained a tremendous amount of respect in the photo world. Phew!

What is your go-to camera gear of choice?

I typically bring two cameras to shoots incase anything happens and I need a backup. I recently purchased the Canon 5D Mark IV, and it’s AMAZING. My go-to lens is the L Series 50mm f/1.2, it’s super crisp and great for portraits. I don’t believe you need expensive, top notch gear to be a great photographer, but when you’re doing big jobs and lots of them, you need to have gear that won’t let you down! 

Any advice to young women who are pursuing a career in photography? 

Don’t let fear hold you back. Learn, read, & study all aspects of photography. Connect with other photographers and ask questions. Know your worth, and stand up for yourself. Get excited and GO FOR IT! Feel free to reach out to me too, I love talking to other creatives! 

Aw you're the sweetest Shaye, and incredibly inspiring!! If you'd like to see more of Shaye's work check out:

Her Website: Shayebabbphotography.com
Her Instagram: @slimshayedy
What She's Wearing: YIREH Desi Romper in Echo &
                     YIREH Mudra Playsuit

Here are some more of Shaye's photos she shot exclusively for YIREH!
We love you Shaye!

Emily Valdez

Jessica Sullivan is 21 years old and started her photography business a year and a half ago (so basically she was 19 people!!). Now, if you're already thinking Jess is amazing, it gets better, she's originally from Honolulu, but recently decided to make the move to Oahu's North Shore. She dove full time into her photography business and is still in school. She's a light and an inspiration to all of us who have a dream, because she's someone making it happen. Here are a few questions Jessica so kindly answered for us, and if you scroll down you'll see some samples of recent work she shot for YIREH :)

What is it like running a business and living on the North Shore of Oahu, one of the most desired areas to live?

Itʻs absolutely amazing. I love it out here and before I lived here, I found myself coming to the North Shore to shoot most of the time anyway so really all signs were pointed to moving!

What challenges do you experience owning your own business?

One of the biggest challenges I face running a business is never being able to fully relax. Thereʻs always something I can be doing to better my business whether itʻs reaching out to potential clients, editing shoots, or just getting out and shooting! Itʻs great to be on your own clock, but sometimes that makes it difficult to get work off your mind and completely unwind.

I totally understand this feeling. For the first few years of running YIREH I found it so hard to relax, especially working from home, there was always something to do. I finally made myself carve out specific days or amounts of time, and once they came, I shut off work brain. I hope you can find something like this for yourself!

What is your go-to camera gear of choice?

I love my canon gear! Right now I own a Canon 6D but would love to get the 5D Mark IV. I shoot with a few different lenses but my favorite for fashion is my 135mm f/2.0.

We all experience "down days" where we can't escape the funk. When you're having one of these what is one reminder, quote, or thing you do to give yourself hope, or bring you back up?

I have a painting on my wall that my best friend painted for me with one of my favorite verses on it: Proverbs 31:25, which reads, "She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future." This verse always picks me up when Iʻm feeling down and lacking motivation.

Any advise you want to give to other young ladies looking to branch out into the photography world?

For young ladies looking to branch out into the photography world, GO FOR IT! When you find something youʻre passionate about, you make it a priority and learning comes easy. So if youʻre passionate about photography, or anything for that matter, make the time to really study it and youʻll become successful!

That is some solid advice!!

Jessica Sullivan @jessicasulls
Portrait of Jessica by: @laceyelizabeth
Model: Sophie Wilson @sophh.wilson

Santorini, Greece. Photo Journal

Emily Valdez

Images from my perspective of Santorini, Greece. We stayed on the island during the month of October. To my surprise, this sleepy island was still busy, but no where near as busy as it seems to get in the summer months. What shocked me most was the row of luxury department stores, on what seemed to be like the Waikiki strip of Santorini. But nonetheless, the iconic white washed buildings, blue capped chapels, and sweeping ocean views made this sleepy little island magical.

If you would like to save any of these images, follow our Travel Santorini board on

Pinterest HERE

Celebrating our One Year Wedding Anniversary

Emily Valdez

Small business is personal right? And marriage should be celebrated, because it is not easy. Tomorrow is Davin and I's first wedding anniversary. I'm nostalgic, so I decided to put together this little blog post as a tribute to that day, and to everything we've been through in this past year. Marriage is probably the hardest thing we've both ever done. It is no joke letting another human into the depths of your heart. But, it is worth the work. Having a forever companion by your side that loves you at your best and your darkest, celebrates with you, cries with you, adventures with you, fails with you, laughs at your bad jokes, and doesn't judge you for never being able to decide what you want to eat (well maybe sometimes judges), nothing compares to that type of love.
Thank you for being on this journey with us YIREH fam. xx
-Emily

Scroll down to the bottom for information on all of the vendors I booked for our wedding.

Vendors:
Venue: Kualoa Ranch
Photographer: Erin Paris @erinparis.hi
Second Shooter: Amber Schoniwitz @schyneweddings
Florals: Ocean Dreamer Florals @ocean_dreamerr
Hair and Makeup: Risa Hoshino @risa.hoshino
Bridesmaid Dresses: YIREH @yireh_
Wedding Dress: Rita Vinieris RIVINI @ritavinieris
Wedding Signs: Splinter @splinter_designs
Calligraphy: Karen Domingo @ks.domingo
Engagement Photos: Casey Liu @Caseykaui
Underwater Engagement Photos: Justin Mack @jmack808
Cakes: Rebecca Marti @sifthawaii
Food: Iges Hawaiian Menu
Photo Booth: Shoots Booth @shootsbooth
Music: Matt Melendez @mattmelendezmusic
Day of Wedding Coordination: For the Good Hawai'i @forthegoodhawaii
Video: For the Good Videographer
Pastor: Pastor Fernando Jaime



 

An extremely inspiring MOM-boss, Julianne McGee

Emily Valdez

This weeks feature is beauty Julianne McGee. Not only does she own a modern and eclectic boutique on the corner of Hotel Street in Chinatown, but she also is a new mom. Her boutique, Echo and Atlas, and her daughter Jordan, were both born around the same time. She is an extremely strong willed and motivated woman, so we thought we'd ask her a few questions on how she does it all!

What brought you to this point? How did you end up with this beautiful corner boutique in Chinatown?

I ended up in Chinatown after working in retail for years. I thought that I would end up working for URBN INC. In some way of another. But I decided to take a chance and open my own store and following a dream. 

-Yes! I love that you chose to give yourself and your dream a chance. That's truly beautiful.

What was your inspiration behind the name Echo and Atlas?

Well the name is actually the name of my two cats in Santa Barbara. They are still in Santa Barbara with a friend. Echo is a homebody and Atlas is constantly on an adventure he would bring me avocados and flowers in the morning before the sun came up.

Whats a little background info on you? You just had a baby and opened a boutique in the same year! I feel like that shows a little about how strong of a woman you are!

Well like everyone, there's a lot. I feel like 2016 was the most adulting year of my life and it was difficult. I think what helped prepare me for that year and still to this day is what I have had to go through in the past. I got sober at an age when people just start being a young adult. That might seem irrelevant but for me, it taught me to commit to something even when it sucks and you feel alone. You have to rely on yourself but know when to accept help. I have so much support our families. (Were sister in laws! - crazy) anyway I guess what I'm trying to communicate is that you have to draw from every lesson to get through the times you want to run away and know when to accept help. 

-Wow what an inspiration you are Julie, to be able to get through something like that and not just settle in life but to make conscious decisions daily to live your best life for you and now your daughter. 2016 was a jam packed year for you, but I have a feeling there are nothing but pink skies ahead! You also are now able to share your story and help others do the same. And so happy to be your sister in law!

Any advice for young moms who want to start a business, but aren't sure if they can do it?

Do your best to prepare yourself for success but understand and accept that there are things you don't know and won't until you're actively doing it.

-That is some solid advice, there really is no way to fully understand every aspect of running a business until you are doing it.

                                                                                        Pc: Rhema Jaime @rhemajaime

Being a business owner is tough, especially in Hawai'i, what keeps you going?

I really want to succeed for myself but also Jordan. 

When I walked into Echo and Atlas I felt very at home, everything was styled so that I immediately felt cozy and comfortable. How did you learn to create such a space?

My mom. She has an ability to transform environments and I always appreciated it from a very young age. We moved a lot and she always made us feel at home in impeccable style.

What is a piece of advice looking back now, after all you've accomplished, you'd give to your twenty year old self?

Believe in yourself. Manifest what you want and don't stress on the idea of forever. 

Echo and Atlas
@echoandatlas
1 North Hotel St
Honolulu, HI 96817

Julie wears the Roya Jumpsuit in Khaos from our Streets of Gold Collection.