nicholeV photography, LLC
# Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 1:32:11 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
Alright, I have listened to the many requests and have decided to be better about posting sneak peeks from sessions. So here is the first image from my sessions last week in California. These two little guys were so darling!

Stay tuned for more!

# Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Tuesday, April 8, 2014 12:08:38 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
I just wanted to pop in and give a huge shout of thanks to everyone who has made my novel Intertwine a great success. Though only out for six weeks, the book already hit Amazon's Hot New list and was listed on USA Today. I so appreciate everyone who has purchased the book. And I particularly appreciate those who have taken the time to leave a review. The book currently has an overall average of 5-stars, so thank you! If you haven't got your copy yet, you still can here. Also, the book is still free to borrow if you have Amazon Prime and own a Kindle device. Come see what everyone is talking about! It's the perfect book for spring break.

I also just returned from a trip to Europe and particularly England where I did research for the next book in the series. We even stayed in a Tudor manor that is similar to Haldon Manor in Intertwine. This is just an iPhone Instagram image, but you get the idea. This is Charlecote Park.

Can't wait to post more images from this trip!
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# Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Tuesday, February 25, 2014 11:14:43 AM (Mountain Standard Time, UTC-07:00) ( )
Thanks so much to you all for your kind words of support about my last post. This book has been such a personal project and I so appreciate your encouragement! So thank you!

And also thank you to everyone who jumped in and voted on the cover image in my last blog post. In the end, I completely agreed with those who felt that Cover B (with the figures on top) probably was better graphic design. But Cover A won by a margin of 70% to 30%, because, let's face it, it's more dramatic. I loved seeing how your comments completely encapsulated my difficulties in making the decision. So here is the cover image:

The book has been through final copy edit and I'm just working on finalizing formatting today. It should be up on Amazon as an e-book within the next day or two. The print book should be available through Amazon hopefully by the end of the week.

In the meantime, how's about a book teaser? Just to give you a taste of my fiction writing style and a sense of what to expect. As I've mentioned, the book is historical romance with a time-travel twist. It's meant to be an enjoyable read that is PG-rated and fun. The kind of thing that you would curl up with on the beach and then pass off to your teenage daughter when you're done without worrying about content.

If you want to check out the book description, you can here. Otherwise, just jump in and read the Prologue below. Also, the text can be hard to read on the blog here, so this link takes you to a pdf version, if you'd prefer.

Intertwine_NicholeVan_Prologue.pdf (46.42 KB)

Intertwine: Prologue
        The obsession began on June 12, 2008 around 11:23 a.m.

Though secretly Emme Wilde considered it more of a ‘spiritual connection’ than an actual full-blown neurosis.

Of course, her brother, Marc, her mother and a series of therapists all begged to disagree.

Thankfully her best friend, Jasmine, regularly validated the connection and considered herself to be Emme’s guide through this divinely mystical union of predestined souls (her words, not Emme’s). Marc asserted that Jasmine was not so much a guide as an incense-addled enabler (again, his words, not Emme’s). Emme was just grateful that anyone considered the whole affair normal—even if it was only Jasmine’s loose sense of ‘normal.’

Jasmine always insisted Emme come with her to estate sales, and this one outside Portland, Oregon proved no exception. Though Jasmine contended this particular estate sale would be significant for Emme, rambling on about circles colliding in the vast cosmic ocean creating necessary links between lives—blah, blah. All typical Jasmine-speak.

Emme brushed it off, assuming that Jasmine really just wanted someone to organize the trip: plan the best route to avoid traffic, find a quirky restaurant for lunch, entertain her on the long drive from Seattle.

At the estate sale, Emme roamed through the stifling tents, touching the cool wood of old furniture, the air heavy with that mix of dust, moth balls and disuse that marks aged things. Jasmine predictably disappeared into a corner piled with antique quilts, hunting yet again for that elusive log cabin design with black centers instead of the traditional red.

But Emme drifted deeper, something pulling her farther and farther into the debris of lives past and spent. To the trace of human passing, like fingerprints left in the paint of a pioneer cupboard door. Stark and clear.

Usually Emme would have stopped to listen to the stories around her, the history grad student in her analyzing each detail. Yet that day she didn’t. She just wandered, looking for something. Something specific.

If only she could remember what.

Skirting around a low settee in a back corner, Emme first saw the antique trunk. A typical mid-nineteenth century traveling chest, solid with mellow aged wood. It did not call attention to itself. But it stood apart somehow, almost as if the air were a little lighter around it.

She first opened the lid out of curiosity, expecting the trunk to be empty. Instead, she found it full. Carefully shifting old books and papers, Emme found nothing of real interest.

Until she reached the bottom right corner.

There she found a small object tucked inside a brittle cotton handkerchief. Gently unwrapping the aged fabric, she pulled out an oval locket. Untouched and expectant.

Filigree covered the front, its gilt frame still bright and untarnished, as if nearly new.

Emme turned the locket over, feeling its heft in her hand, the metal cool against her palm. It hummed with an almost electric pulse. How long had the locket lain wrapped in the trunk?

Transparent crystal partially covered the back. Under the crystal, two locks of hair were woven into an intricate pattern—one bright and fair, the other a dark chocolate brown. Gilded on top of the crystal, two initials nestled together into a stylized gold symbol.

She touched the initials, trying to make them out. One was clearly an F. But she puzzled over the other for a moment, tracing the design with her eyes. And then she saw it. Emme sucked in a sharp breath. An E. The other initial was an E.

She opened the locket, hearing the small pop of the catch.

A gasp.

Her hands tingled.

A sizzling shock started at the back of her neck and then spread.


There are moments in life that sear into the soul. Brief glimpses of some larger force. When so many threads collapse into one. Coalesce into a single truth.

Seeing him for the first time was one of those moments.

He gazed intently out from within the right side of the locket: blond, blue-eyed, chiseled with a mouth hinting at shared laughter. Emme’s historian mind quickly dated his blue-green, high collared jacket and crisp, white shirt and neckcloth to the mid-Regency era, probably around 1812, give or take a year.

Emme continued to look at the man—well, stare actually. His golden hair finger-combed and deliciously disheveled. Broad shoulders angled slightly toward the viewer. Perhaps his face a shade too long and his nose a little too sharp for true beauty. But striking. Handsome even.

Looking expectant, as if he had been waiting for her.

Emme would forever remember the jolt of it.

Surprise and recognition.

She knew him. Had known him.

Somehow, somewhere, in some place.

He felt agonizingly familiar. That phantom part of her she had never realized was lost.

The sensation wasn’t quite deja vu.

More like memory.

Like suddenly finding that vital thing you didn’t realize had been misplaced. Like coming up, gasping for air, after nearly drowning and seeing the world bright and sparkling and new.

She stood mesmerized by him until Jasmine joined her.

“Ooooh, you found him.” The hushed respect in her voice was remarkable. This was Jasmine after all.

Emme nodded mutely.

“Your circles are so closely intertwined. Amazing.”

Jasmine turned the locket in Emme’s hand.

“What does this inscription say?” she asked.

Emme hadn’t noticed the engraved words on the inside left of the locket case. But now she read them. Her sudden sharp inhalation seared, painfully clenching.

Oh. Oh!

The words reverberated through her soul, shattering and profound.

Emme didn’t recall much more of that day—Jasmine purchasing the locket or even the little restaurant where they ate lunch. Instead, she only remembered the endless blur of passing trees on the drive home, the inscription echoing over and over:

To E

throughout all time

heart of my soul

your F

Thanks for reading!
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# Friday, February 21, 2014
Friday, February 21, 2014 3:13:43 PM (Mountain Standard Time, UTC-07:00) ( )

I have a secret I've been keeping for months now. It's not a huge secret—nothing earth-shattering. But I am a little shy about it. Which is why I haven't said anything. But now is the time to come clean.

I wrote a book.

Not a photography book. In fact, I don't think the word "photography" is even mentioned. It's fiction. As in historical romance, time-travel, don't-judge-me fiction.

It's a long story how I ended up writing a fiction book (which I'll spare you for now). As many of you know, I have an MA in English and taught technical writing for ten years. I have written more textbooks—photography and not—than I can easily count (Fourteen? Fifteen?). Turns out that technical writing and creative writing are not as far apart as you might think. Writing is writing, in the end.

So just transfer all my love of dramatic flair and obsessive eye for technical detail into fiction and you have this book: a compelling tightly-plotted storyline, dynamic characters, snappy dialogue and a satisfying ending. Sound good?

How's about a book description? The book is called Intertwine.

Time is not a river. It is a vast cosmic sea. Where each life exists as rippling circles on its surface, past and future being eternally present. And occasionally, one expanding ring intertwines with that of another, weaving the lives of two people together. . . .

In 2012, Emme Wilde can’t find the right guy. She wants to feel that swept-off-your-feet dizziness of true love. But so far, her dating life has come up short. Star Trek geek? Nice but too serious. Hippy artist? Cute but too vulnerable. Instead, Emme obsesses over the portrait of an unknown man in an old locket. Granted, a seriously hot guy with delicious, wind-swept hair she just itches to run her fingers through. But still. Dead men may be great listeners, but they are not exactly boyfriend material. Emme travels to England, determined to uncover his history and conquer the strong connection she feels. 

In 1812, James Knight has given up finding the right woman. All he wants is someone to share his love of adventure. Instead, his life has become a Shakespearean drama. His brother languishes in a tragic star-crossed romance. His beloved sister clings to life, slowly dying of consumption. But then he finds a beautiful mystery woman—dripping wet and half-dead—beneath a tree on his estate. Now if he can uncover her history, perhaps adventure—and romance—will find him at last.

So that's your plot teaser . . . The book is in final (final!) copy edit this week and should be released next week on Amazon. I chose not to seek a publisher for it (loooong story there too) and will instead go the indie publish route.  

Which means that right now I'm trying to finalize the cover. And I would love some help making the decision, because I've stared at these two options for so long, I fear I'll go cross-eyed.


Just click on the link and tell me which cover you prefer, A or B.


Survey Link

Thanks so much for taking the time to vote!
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# Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Wednesday, September 25, 2013 3:13:22 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
After months of work, our new digital workshop—Mastering On-Camera Flash—is finally here! I'm so excited about this workshop. Even better, scroll down to find out how to win our entire Digital Workshop Collection!

Best of all, we've launched this workshop at the amazing price of only $29 (reg $49) which also includes a $20 gift certificate. See all the details here and don't miss out on this crazy price, good until September 30, 2013.

Let's face it. On-camera flash is hardly anyone's idea of exciting, powerful photography. I can't think of a time that I've run out the door to a photosession, giddy with excitement over using my speedlight on-camera.

That being said, on-camera flash is the one skill that saves the day. Every.Single.Time. It's not a "sexy" thing to know, but it's the one skill that can save a difficult situation. And when you really know what you're doing with on-camera flash, the light from a bare bulb flash can be flattering and even pretty. I'm often amazed at how soft and natural on-camera flash can look.

Here's a case in point. The first image was shot without my flash firing, so you can see that my model was a little dark and shadowy with the background being a little bright. The two images after were taken with the same metering, only with my flash firing. Both images were taken with bare bulb flash pointed straight at my model. You actually get to watch me shoot these images on the workshop supplemental videos.

A more images from the workshop. I love that the workshop doesn't rely on any gadgets or diffusers. Instead, it just focuses on how to use your flash bare-bulb to get the best results. I love that these images were all taken using on-camera flash in a variety of situations.

Don't miss out on this amazing workshop!

Even better, to celebrate this launch, we'll be giving away our entire Digital Workshop Collection which also includes our Mastering On-Camera Flash workshop to one lucky person. To enter, just post a reply to this blog post. If you already own tour Digital Collection or the new workshop, no worries. If you win, we will refund your purchase! We'll announce a winner on Tuesday, Oct. 1.

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# Thursday, September 12, 2013
Thursday, September 12, 2013 4:11:50 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )

Don't miss out! I'm planning on shooting in a grassy field rimmed with trees and autumn leaves and hopefully will be able to haul out my red velvet antique couch. The sessions will be held on Sept 21st and Sept 28th going from late afternoon until sunset. You will get proof copy of every image I can take in 25 minutes on disk for printing, plus one completely retouched art print digital file with a corresponding 8x10 physical print of the art file.

This is the best deal that we've run in years for family photos. Call, text or email me (nichole @ today to get on my schedule, as we have a very limited number of spots!

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# Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Wednesday, August 28, 2013 10:26:58 AM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
Well, I'm so loving my birthday week! Who knew that turning 40 could be so much fun?

We're still doing the deals and amazing giveaways. Hop over to our Flourish Facebook page and share our post for a chance to win everything in our Flourish shop (over $1100 worth of products!).

And also don't miss out on today's incredible savings! Until 4pm MDT today, we have marked down our Creative Burst Collection to only $40. That is 7 of our most popular sets for the price of 1, a savings of over 85%. So don't miss out!

And in case you missed our blog post here, sign up for our newsletter and get some wonderful new freebies—a free sunflare overlay and 8 darling wallpapers for your phone/tablet/computer. I'm in love with them! I find myself turning my devices on and off, just to see my lock screen, haha.

And everything in our Flourish shop is 40% off for the rest of the week. Just enter


at checkout and an additional 40% will be deducted from your order!

Yay! Thanks so much for celebrating my birthday with me!
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# Monday, August 26, 2013
Monday, August 26, 2013 5:08:34 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
Well, this Friday is my 40th birthday, and seeing how it's my birthday and my birthday week, I decided I'd have some fun! I mean, you only turn 40 once, right? And I figured I could either spend my birthday sad that I'm growing older, or I could throw a virtual online party with giveaways, insane savings and freebies all week. And me being me, why be sad when I can throw a party instead? I'm so appreciative of all of you and your support and friendship. So I decided that this week would be about giving back!

So welcome to Black Friday Week, where we'll have deals and freebies all week long, all to celebrate my BIG 4-0.

To kick things off, enjoy this coupon code for 40% off you entire Flourish Emporium purchase, including bundles. Just enter the code


at checkout.

And as a gift from me to you, I have created special new freebies of my favorite things—8 darling wallpapers for your smart phone/tablet/computer desktop and a free sunflare overlay for Photoshop or PSE.

Here are sample images of all 8 of the wallpapers. I'm so in love with these. They come from some of my favorite Victorian artists: Kate Greenaway, Walter Crane, and William Morris. Others are just some of my favorite designs (and a chevron background thrown in cause who doesn't love chevron?!).

And everyone knows how much I love me some sunflare. So here is this yummy free sunflare overlay for free too!

To download these freebies, just visit Flourish Emporium and sign up for our newsletter. (The link is at the bottom left of our homepage.) After you sign up, you'll be sent details on how to download your freebies. If you already receive our newsletter, we have already sent you an email with information on how to download these new freebies.

Also, stay tuned to our Facebook page, as we will be doing daily giveaways and added savings between now and Friday for those who pay attention!

Don't miss out on all the fun! And thanks for celebrating my birthday with me!

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# Sunday, April 15, 2012
Sunday, April 15, 2012 8:14:54 PM (Mountain Daylight Time, UTC-06:00) ( )
For this month's Elevate project, I decided to show a little Photoshop work on a recent engagement shoot. The shoot was a LOT Of fun . . . . involving some antique airplanes, vintage suitcases and some wonderful period styling. My editing for both of these images closely followed this YouTube tutorial I did showing one of my fav action recipes (minus the sunflare, obviously, haha).

For this first image, the groom's adorable daughter joined in for some of the images. I loved her cute Shirley Temple outfit and she was great to act bored for a couple frames.  So here is the image SOOC:

And here is one of my final edits. I wanted to minimize the distracting background and straighten and center the image a little more.

With this second image, I shot this using an off-camera light. But I didn't want to bother lighting the plane too, so I exposed the background more for the airplane than for the sky. As a consequence, I lost some detail in my sky.

So with my edit, I did a manual merge of two exposures of the original RAW file to bring detail back into the sky.

There are many more images from this shoot that I'm dying to play with, haha, but this will have to do for now. To continue this circle, hop on over to
kamee june photography  orange county, ca and see what she's done this month!
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# Sunday, February 12, 2012
Sunday, February 12, 2012 9:29:37 PM (Mountain Standard Time, UTC-07:00) ( )
Just one for this month's post . . . . . I loved the light in this image and how it captured the folds of her beautiful dress . . .

To continue this blog circle, hop on over and see what Wendy VonSosen | San Francisco Bay Area Photographer has done!
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<April 2014>
About Nichole

Nichole Van has repeatedly been labeled as a hot, new, up and coming photographer. As a Utah wedding photographer and a Utah portrait photographer, she specializes in turning everyday life into art. Nichole loves expressing the unique beauty of every client, creating artistic images that make people gasp when they see them.

As an international award-winning photographer, Nichole won the prestigious International 8x10 Portrait of the Year from Wedding and Portrait Photographers International (WPPI) for 2007. Consequently, her international award winning photography was featured in Rangefinder Magazine in June 2008. She has also taken First, Second and Third place honors from WPPI in other international competitions for her child and family photography. Additionally, Nichole has received numerous Accolades of Excellence and currently holds an Accolade of Photographic Mastery from WPPI.

In addition to her love for photography, Nichole loves teaching and enjoyed being English faculty at Brigham Young University for nearly 10 years. As the best of both worlds, teaching photography to others is her passion. Nichole currently offers international photography workshops focusing on helping others enhance creativity and artistry in their photos. Combining her excellence in teaching with her photographic knowledge, Nichole’s Life as Art Workshops are quickly revamping industry standards for photographic workshops.

Nichole lives in southern Utah County with her husband and three children. You can see her work at

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