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Archive: ‘Giving Back’

Giving Thanks

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

“Be present in all things and thankful for all things” — Maya Angelou

Thanksgiving Day. Amid the rush of traveling to loved ones, buying food for the Thanksgiving table, straightening the house, sweeping leaves,  there is the promise of one untouched day given over to being thankful. Thanksgiving is my favorite day of the year. Delicious, comforting food, no gifts and lots of hanging out with family and friends. Time slows to a crawl and we savor the moments that string together to make this day so special.

It is 2017 and I am thankful for so much: The sweetness and light of our son, who will walk through the doors later tonight, his first visit home from college. My strong, kind, patient and resilient husband. My sisters who are each making the world a better place.Our cousins who are like sisters to us and their amazing, creative mother. My brothers-in-law and their beautiful families.  My incredible mother, who so fiercely loves us and lives life to its fullest. Her sweetheart, whose warm embrace hugs us all.

I am thankful for their light that shines through each day.

And I am thankful for the gift of photography that keeps me on my toes, pushes my creativity and allows me to capture the light that shines in each of you, your families, your children.

Savor this day, this week for all it has to offer. Treasure your loved ones and hold them close to your heart, and remember those who could not be at the table.

Happy Thanksgiving!

— Nanine

Celebrating 10 Years in Business!

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

This time, ten years ago, I quietly launched my photography business here in Charlotte, NC. I named it Nanine Hartzenbusch Photography ~ Documentary Family Portraiture. Ten years later, I continue to build upon what I started: creating custom story-telling portraits of your beautiful families, siblings, infants, toddlers, seniors, and extended family gatherings.  I’ve designed your stellar holiday cards, graduation party invitations and baby announcements. I’ve partnered with non-profits to donate to silent auction fundraisers and held a day of mini-sessions at the McGill Rose Garden to benefit local charities. I’ve taught workshops and college courses and I’ve traveled to the DC area to work with a great group of clients. For all this, I am grateful.

Prior to starting my photography business, I worked as a staff photojournalist and editor at newspapers and wire services. When I launched my business, I  turned my lens in a new direction, using my photojournalistic influences on portrait photography clients. I also enjoy working with editorial, small business, non-profit and commercial clients to tell their stories with images.

I look forward to the next ten years with YOU! Sharing your precious moments, telling your stories. Thank you for thinking of Nanine Hartzenbusch Photography!

Nanine’s Experience:

Nanine has 25+ years experience as a photojournalist, family portrait and corporate photographer. She was part of the New York Newsday team awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Spot News Reporting in 1992. Her clients include The New York Times, The Washington Post, South Park Magazine, The Charlotte Observer, PNC Bank, Allstate Insurance, Kipp Charlotte, Cooking Light, Organic Gardening, Franklin & Marshall College, Lehigh University, Haverford College and many prominent Charlotte and Washington DC area families. Nanine has taught Photojournalism at the Knight School of Communication, Queens University, and Photography workshops. She has donated her photographic & design services to the MACS Education Foundation, Charity League, The Lunch Project, Saint Johns Episcopal Church-Charlotte and the Mental Health Association of the Carolinas.


Happy Mother’s Day

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

Happy Mother’s Day everyone! Today we’ll take time to smell the roses and stroll the paths at the McGill Rose Garden in Charlotte, a Mother’s Day family tradition. If you have not been, please consider visiting today or any other day. It’s a lovely city block filled with roses and lots of other flowers, trees, bushes, grasses, sculptures and even a rail car. An oasis in the city, an unexpected surprise, a place of peace and contemplation. Last month I spent an afternoon photographing ten mini-portrait sessions to benefit The Lunch Project, a Charlotte based philanthropy that helps feed school children in Tanzania a hot lunch. I am thrilled to write a check today that will support ten lunch days at the Lemanyata School or 9,000 lunches. It costs $85 to feed 900 children a lunch. Please visit The Lunch Project on Facebook or their website to learn more about this wonderful organization. Our portrait mini-sessions included children, families, moms, dads, dogs, giant cookies and lots of laughs. It was a fun day and everyone received a matted gift print ready for gift giving or for keeping. Here are some portraits from our special day in the garden ~


Hindin_041413_009Cane_041413_006Thomas_041413_014   Hull_041413_028d_Sands_041413_002  Keeling_041413_011Johnson_041413_005Rau_041413_013Tennant_041413_012Tennant_041413_013  



Giving Back ~ The Light Factory Print Auction

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

I love the beach, and carry special memories from our trips to places where water meets the sand. I bring my camera with me on our trips and make pictures that come from the heart ~ capturing family memories, or a beautiful landscape. Each year, I contribute a print to The Light Factory annual Print auction and this year I’ve donated “Faded Lights,” a print from Bowen’s Island, near Charleston. Out for a family dinner on the docks of Bowen’s Island marina, we took a walk and found this treasure.

The Light Factory is Charlotte’s museum devoted to photography and film, educational programs and cultural events. I am grateful for its presence and impact. The Print Auction promises to be an evening of great food, drinks and a chance to purchase original art. Please visit the  the gallery  of prints here. And For a fun look behind the scenes, please visit Dina Asma’s blog (Exhibitions coordinator and Light Factory Gallery Manager). For more information on the Auction evening, click here & enjoy!!

Sweet Children in the Rose Garden

Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

This past spring I had a lovely afternoon in the McGill Rose Garden with several special families. I photographed mini sessions and proceeds from the sessions directly benefitted  The Lunch Project, a Charlotte-based philanthropic organization, founded by Rebecca Wofford and Kristin Steele.  I met so many wonderful children and their parents that afternoon and was able to help The Lunch Project with a donation, so a win-win! The Lunch Project provides a hot lunch to school children at the Lamenyanta Primary School near Arusha Town in the Kilimanajaro Region of Tanzania. A hot lunch helps the children to learn and stay in school.  It costs $85 to feed 950 children one lunch. And The Lunch Project  provides an opportunity for families in the United States to teach their own children about philanthropy by sponsoring a lunch and reaching across the oceans to make a global connection with school children in Tanzania. Most recently, The Lunch Project has presented in local elementary schools and through an age-appropriate, educator-designed curriculum, they hope to inspire children to engage in philanthropy and become more globally aware.

These siblings had such sweet smiles were so much fun to photograph – we walked through the gardens and picked some fun places to take their portraits. Here are some of my favorite images from their session in the McGill Rose Garden ~

Sweet siblings in the Rose Garden

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

I had wonderful time photographing these sweet siblings during a recent photo session at the McGill Rose Garden – They had such cute, pretty smiles and loved being in the garden. I offered mini-sessions to benefit The Lunch Project, a Charlotte philanthropic organization.We had a lot of fun exploring the corners of the garden ~  and benefitted The Lunch Project. Here are my favorite portraits from their session:

Thank you ~ You helped make a Difference

Thursday, May 10th, 2012

Thank you to so many of you for making  Sunday, May 6 such a success! Our special garden portrait mini session in honor of Mother’s Day was wonderful. But I could not have done it without your support. Thank you to Karisa at  McGill Rose Garden for hosting us. What a place of beauty! Thank you to Rebecca and Kristin, co-founders of The Lunch Project for your support. And thank you to all the participants! It was so much fun to bring out the best in each of you! I am busy editing your photo galleries, and will let you know when each one is ready. But in the meantime, I’ve designed this poster for the McGill Rose Garden that will be displayed in the garden on Mother’s Day. You’ll see familiar faces here 🙂 And lastly – thank you for the opportunity to support The Lunch Project – a Charlotte-based non-profit organization that helps provide hot lunches to school children at the Lamenyanta Primary School in Arusha, Tanzania and educates US elementary school children about global philanthropy.

Coming Together For a Great Cause

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

I am really excited and looking forward to this Sunday. It’s just a few more days till our special event at the McGill Rose Garden to benefit The Lunch Project.  I’ll be photographing special portrait mini-sessions in honor of Mother’s Day. Proceeds will be donated to The Lunch Project. The garden is a beautiful oasis just north of Uptown Charlotte, at 940 North Davidson Street. It began in 1950 when Helen McGill planted two rose bushes to beautify the square block her husband Henry had purchased,  which was used as a coal yard. Over the next three decades, numerous rose bushes and beds were planted. In 1967, the garden opened to the public on Mother’s Day, and that tradition continues today. What a wonderful way to celebrate Mother’s Day with a walk in the garden, bursting with colorful rose bushes and other blooms. When you visit the garden, be sure to stop in and see Karisa Pennell, and her beautiful floral designs, or take a class from her at Nectar – the cute shop you first walk into at the Garden.

Earlier this year I had the pleasure of meeting Rebecca Wofford and Kristin Steele, who started The Lunch Project in 2011. They gave a very moving presentation at The Charity League of Charlotte and I was drawn to their cause ~ and how small actions can make a huge difference in the life of a child, a school and a village. While visiting Tanzania, Rebecca connected with the Lamenyanta Primary School near Arusha Town in the Kilimanajaro Region. She discovered that while enrollments are increasing in primary schools due to a government initiative, the support and infrastructure is lacking. Each teacher typically has a classroom of 125 children – with dirt floors, leaky roofs and not enough books. Those children walk great distances to school and are often hungry, struggling to keep awake and learn.  Providing a hot lunch to these children can give them the energy to concentrate and stay in school. Lunches are cooked over a wood fire by their mothers ~ which allows them to be involved in their child’s school and earn a small income. It’s simple, and it works. It costs $85 to feed 950 children one lunch. Rebecca and Kristin started by providing one lunch a week. One year later, they are up to two lunches a week. And The Lunch Project  provides an opportunity for families in the United States to teach their own children about philanthropy by sponsoring a lunch and reaching across the oceans to make a global connection with school children in Tanzania. Most recently, The Lunch Project has presented in local elementary schools and through an age-appropriate, educator-designed curriculum, they hope to inspire children to engage in philanthropy and become more globally aware.

Karisa, Rebecca, Kristin and I will join forces on Sunday to provide a fun afternoon of special portrait mini-sessions. The garden will be open to families who have booked sessions, to stroll around before and after their portraits.  Through our efforts we’ll be able to sponsor several lunches at the Lamenyanta Primary School.

So the good news is we are fully booked for our event on Sunday – but if you are interested, I can put you on our waiting list. If enough people sign up, we may open up another day of mini portrait sessions. Please contact me at nanine@naninephoto.com if you would like to be placed on our waiting list. …..And we’ll keep our fingers crossed for perfect weather!

Family of Eight ~ UCity Magazine

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

Remember the show Eight is Enough? Well, I met a real life family of eight while on assignment for U City Magazine last month. Meet  David and Mendy Henderson and their six children – their most recent additions are twins, adopted  from Ethiopia last year. The Hendersons, who started University City Fellowship church in 2000, are featured in the November issue of UCity. My favorite quote from the story is “love loud, risk often, hope always,” David’s mantra. He and Mendy truly practice what they preach and follow their hearts. Their church’s mission is to reach people local and globally, and they have done just that. Here are my favorite images from my afternoon with the Hendersons. To see more, please visit the UCity Magazine pages.

Chefs Giving Back ~ South Park Magazine

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

If you know me, you know I love food, cooking, dining out and collecting cook books! I also love to tell stories of people who give back, pay it forward or contribute to their community.  So I was thrilled to work with South Park Magazine this month to photograph two top Charlotte chefs Gene Briggs and Paul Ketterhagen, and their special dishes for a feature on the upcoming March of Dimes Signature Chefs’ Auction November 3 at Carmel Country Club. Briggs, executive chef and partner of Blue Restaurant and Bar prepared a Rabbit Stifado and Ketterhagen, executive chef at Carpe Diem prepared a Tomato Cobbler. Both chefs will be participating in this special dinner to benefit the March of Dimes ~ Proceeds benefit the March of Dimes mission to promote healthy babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. You can read about the chefs, their dishes and their commitment to charities in the November issue of South Park Magazine and you can see the fun photographs I took here ~