KYRA

KYRA

GET TO KNOW

Kyra Alves

MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL |  CLASS OF 2018

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"I didn't have any fear before we hired you! I was very excited to have you as my photographer and I'm so thankful I had the opportunity! Everything was my favorite. I enjoyed every aspect of the day!! I wish I could do it all over again!"

- Kyra

What was your senior experience like?

A Best Friend Session with friends Kyra and Paul.

What do you like to do when you are not in class? Play a sport? Chess team? Choir? Volunteer? What do you LOVE to do?

I am the captain of both of the volleyball and track and field teams at MHS. I'm the Vice President of Student Leadership, a member of student council, a member of Best Buddies, and I'm also apart of Peer Mentoring.

Who inspires you most and Why?

I'm most inspired by my parents. They push through any obstacles on their way and are the kindest people I know. Both my mom and dad have such big hearts. They have shaped me to become the person I am today.

If you could sit down and share a meal with anyone (deceased or alive, famous or not) who would it be and why?

I would love to share a meal with my Grandfather. I never got to meet him. He died before I was born. My mom always says how great of a man he was and how much I would've loved him. I wish I had the chance to meet him.

Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.

This is very recent, but my great aunt who I am very close with has been fighting breast cancer for about 7 years. She has always been a fighter, but we just found out her time is coming to an end. We weren't expecting this at all. My family has had to come to terms with everything and learn to appreciate life because you never know when it's going to end.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

I would love to go to Italy again. It is one of the most amazing countries I have ever been to. I would also love to go to Australia. It has always been a dream of mine.

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

Enjoy it. Don't hold back and take any opportunities that come your way. Make memories and friends that will last a lifetime.

Anything else that I missed that you would like to tell me about you?

Just like you, I'm an Aquarius!! I love the beach and fall.

[I love you Kyra, my fellow Aquarian!!]

"With brave wings, she flies."
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Makeup by Claudia Frustaci

Hair by Kelly O'Grady

PAUL

PAUL

GET TO KNOW

Paul Speliakos

MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL |  CLASS OF 2018

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Thoughts on having his senior portraits taken: "I honestly didn't really have a fear, I just wanted to get my pictures done and I knew you would do a great job. My favorite part of the day was probably seeing the geese infestation on the beach. [that was crazy] You are a fantastic photographer who wants you to feel as comfortable as possible. I had a great time and lots of laughs."

- Paul

FYI, The basketball was NOT Photoshopped in. This is an authentic spin folks! - Jennifer

What was your senior experience like?

A Friend Session with Kyra and Chrissy.

What do you like to do when you are not in class? Play a sport? Chess team? Choir? Volunteer? What do you LOVE to do?

I like to play basketball and run track. I also like to hang out with my friends.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

I would travel to Greece because I have family there and I would love to experience it with them.

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

Good Luck.

...I like that Paul; simple and to the point!"

Click on any image to see the full version.


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CHRISSY

CHRISSY

GET TO KNOW

Chrissy Speliakos

MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL |  CLASS OF 2018

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"My favorite part of the day was [photographing] in the fields with my friend Kyra. Having someone there with me made things so much more fun and relaxing, especially when we took pictures together. I would definitely take my pictures with Jen. You will have the best experience ever! The pictures are amazing and her positive attitude makes you feel so comfortable which makes the day so much better!"

- Chrissy

What was your senior experience like?

A Best Friend Session with my friend Kyra and my brother Paul. We went to the field, to our high school track and to Hopkinton State Park. 

What do you like to do when you are not in class? Play a sport? Chess team? Choir? Volunteer? What do you LOVE to do?

I love to run track, and hope to continue it in college.

Who inspires you most and Why?

My grandmother. She is fighting Alzheimer's and has been for over 10 years, yet she has never had a negative outlook on life.

If you could sit down and share a meal with anyone (deceased or alive, famous or not) who would it be and why?

Kerri Strug, she was an olympic gymnast who broke her ankle during an event at the olympics. I would love to hear her story and how she felt that day. 

Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.

When I was in middle school I broke my back doing gymnastics and later broke it again in track my freshman year. The doctor told me I should quit sports for good, just in case. Instead this setback made me stronger, and I am now talking to division 1 coaches for the one thing I have always fought for. 

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

I would travel to Greece to spend time with my family that a I have only seen once or twice. 

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

I would tell them to not let schools work alter their experience. I would want them to create a schedule that manages their work load, but gives them enough time to experience everything great high school has to offer.


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Makeup by Claudia Frustaci

Hair by Kelly O'Grady

MILLENA

MILLENA

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Millena Ribeiro

MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL |  CLASS OF 2018

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"I loved getting pampered with hair and makeup all done, I was super excited to start the day. I was just nervous I wouldn't look like myself in any of the pictures because I'm not used to getting pictures professionally done. I always saw sessions that you did with with my friends older siblings and loved the look of it all! I would totally recommend you to a best friend because you made the whole experience so much fun and something I will always remember!"

Where was your Senior Portrait Experience?

 Newburyport, MA and Plum Island

What do you like to do when you are not in class? Play a sport? Chess team? Choir? Volunteer? What do you LOVE to do?

I started track my sophomore year. I love beach days and going on random adventures wherever they may be. I love traveling it is a big part of my life.

Who inspires you most and Why?

I am very inspired by my parents because they are such hard-working people, and they always have taught me to be the best person I can be.

If you could sit down and share a meal with anyone (deceased or alive, famous or not) who would it be and why?

If I could sit down and have a meal with anyone it would have to be my Grandfather. He passed away when I was 10 and we were very close. (he always called me the favorite grandchild but my cousins don't know that)

Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.

I think an experience that changed my life was my first plane ride when I was 4years old. It was such an exciting thing and ever since then I have been in love with the idea of traveling and hope to do so all throughout my life.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

My dream is to travel to Europe and go visit everywhere like Greece, France, Italy and eat everything that they are famous for.

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

I would have to say, try your hardest and keep your grades up because you don't realize how fast senior year approaches. Also just have a good time, these are going to be the most memorable 4 years of your life!

Anything else that I missed that you would like to tell me about you?

I am obsessed with my dog Billy. Everyone who knows me know how much I love him. I have a weird obsession with minions as well, I don't know why I think they're so cute!

I would love to sit down with my great grandmother who passed away a few years ago. Sadly I wasn't able to be with her on her last few days of her life and I would love to see her and speak with her one last time.

Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.

Dance in general has shaped my life. It has made me into the person I am by allowing me to be myself and stepping out of my comfort zone. The people I have met and what it has taught me will stay with me forever.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

I would travel to France since I have learned the language and the country has so many beautiful sites to offer.

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

I would tell them to be yourself and don't let others bring you down. Choose your friends wisely and have fun but make sure school is a priority.

Anything else that I missed that you would like to tell me about you?

I love my family and friends. School is very important to me and I love nature.
I love the beach and of course DANCE!


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Makeup by Claudia Frustaci

Hair by Julie Pichel

Personal Styling Fay Andreola, Tellstyle.com

Makeup by Claudia Frustaci

Hair by Julie Pichel

Personal Styling Fay Andreola, Tellstyle.com

FALL

FALL

New England is the place to be when fall rolls around. Here are some places to check out those changing leaves!

BRIANNA

BRIANNA

GET TO KNOW

Brianna Leung

MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL CLASS OF 2017

 

Brianna, you are so kind and beautiful and I loved every minute of working with you. Touring Newport with you, stopping at all those perfect locations to match the outfits lovingly curated by Fay was one heck of an enjoyable day. And to top it off, that beautiful sunset placed in the sky to top it all off with dance photos on the beach! Kind person, beautiful dancer and accomplished student. I can't wait to see all the wonderful things you accomplish going forward! 

What do you like to do outside of school?

I do competitive dance ALOT! I dance 5 days a week and I absolutely love it. It takes much of my time along with volunteering at the hospital.

Who inspires you most and Why?

I'm inspired by my mother cause she does everything for me and supports me.
She worked so hard for everything she has today.

If you could sit down and share a meal with anyone (deceased or alive, famous or not) who would it be and why?

I would love to sit down with my great grandmother who passed away a few years ago. Sadly I wasn't able to be with her on her last few days of her life and I would love to see her and speak with her one last time.

Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.

Dance in general has shaped my life. It has made me into the person I am by allowing me to be myself and stepping out of my comfort zone. The people I have met and what it has taught me will stay with me forever.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?

I would travel to France since I have learned the language and the country has so many beautiful sites to offer.

What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?

I would tell them to be yourself and don't let others bring you down. Choose your friends wisely and have fun but make sure school is a priority.

Anything else that I missed that you would like to tell me about you?

I love my family and friends. School is very important to me and I love nature.
I love the beach and of course DANCE!

 

Makeup by Claudia Frustaci, Beauty + Lifestyle

Hair by Kelly O'Grady

Personal Styling by Fay Andreola, Tellstyle.com

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Brianna's collection is TO DIE FOR! After her day in Newport, I prepared Brianna's images for her grand reveal. After watching her video, we went to work creating her gorgeous collection. Together we designed pieces that Brianna and her family will cherish forever. 

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Brianna's Collection:

  • I8x12 Luxe Album
  • 16x24 Float Wrap
  • 16x30 Canvas Wrap Storyboard
  • Posh Desktop Shape Metal
  • Mini Albums
  • Matted Prints
  • Graduation Invitations

COACHELLA VIBES

COACHELLA VIBES

We may not be there in person, but we can be there in our hearts...and closets. Ruffles, bell sleeves, chic sunnies, floral prints, cutoff jeans..Here's how to dress for Coachella without looking basic AF.

all photos © JENNIFER HELMKA

SEEN on International Women's Day

SEEN on International Women's Day

I had something totally different that I had planned to write about for today. But, last night was, well, it wasn't a great night. It was a shitty night. I am an optimist, so before I finally fell asleep, I thanked God for all of the positives in my life (which are many). I still did not sleep well, so I was up before 5:00 a.m.

Get SEEN Issue #7 at seeninprint.co

Get SEEN Issue #7 at seeninprint.co

When I checked my email, I saw something I've been waiting for for a little while now; SEEN Magazine Issue #7 was just released. THE issue, the issue with my first print editorial featuring Kara. So many emotions came flooding through me that I couldn't even look at it yet. I actually put my phone down and got all welled up. In that moment, I thought about all of the times I've been put down in some way shape or form, many of them recently.

It wears on you to feel like you're not good enough, even when you KNOW you are trying so hard. I want my children to see success that they can model, the kind that will bring them not just financial freedom, but happiness. I want to give them the world.

When I was finally able to chill my emotions a bit, I read Kara's editorial. It is beautiful; she is beautiful; her words are inspiring and her images, MY work, is beautiful. I did that, and it's in a magazine. Her story lifted me up today: 

"Being told you can't become the person you want to be is both heartbreaking and demoralizing. I knew I had to become a stronger person in order to block out this part and do what I needed to do for myself, and not for anyone else."

That hit me in my WHY: "You are worth it. You are worth happiness, you are worth love and acceptance for who you are and who you strive to be." You should not feel like you have to prove your worth to friends, family, significant others or anyone else. Know who you are, find strength in yourself and you will be successful. Every time I get behind my lens, my focus is to show you how strong and beautiful you truly are, so that you never forget, even when you are tested. And you will be tested.

So, Thank you Kara Halpin for inspiring me today, there's a photo of you under "beautiful" in the dictionary, I swear - make shit happen. Thank you for my dear friend and amazingly talented Makeup Artist, Claudia Frustaci of Ciao Bella Spa. Thanks to Cassie for your lighting assistance. Thank you SEEN Magazine for this editorial (and for it showing up this morning in my inbox, it was more timely than you know), thank you to all of you who support me, always.

Today is International Women's Day and while different people are honoring that in different ways (that include taking the day off), I am here, working harder, next to my strong, beautiful daughter sharing my accomplishment. Because I want her to see a strong woman and I don't want her to know what a day without me would be like. YOU BE YOU.

HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY.

Now, head on over to seeninprint.co and order your copy of SEEN Magazine Issue #7. Feel free to frame it if you'd like.