mixed tape

i met megan and james a few years back when i photographed their tear fest, stunning wedding (check it here).  i spent the day smiling and  feeling hope grow up like a mountain in my chest that by the end of the day was bigger than all the hills of   anxiety and fears i was feeling at the time about being a single mom. megan was one of the most radiant brides i've been lucky enough to photograph.....she was also the mother of 5 equally lovely children. 

they gave their wedding guests a cd as a thank you, like a lot of couples seem to do these days, but UNLIKE a lot of wedding cd's it was good. REALLY good. i had it on rotation for almost an entire summer---it bonded me to them in the way that only perfect mixed tapes can do among like minded people. and that was on top of the already puppy like attachment i formed to them as their wedding photographer.

so when they had their first baby together and asked me to photograph them as a family of EIGHT in D.C., fireworks went off in my heart, and i couldn't wait to spend a few more hours in the light of their unique brand of love. this is what we got when i did. thanks guys, i hope i get some more time with you soon. xxx


yan fam way 2015

"I knew i would get a glimpse into how she saw the world through her camera, but the most valuable takeaway was Yan's voice in my ear, encouraging me to see everything my own way." -Ashley Kelemen

Dear anyone who's ever thought about coming to my workshop,

Sometimes i think the workshop is pretty damn special, and sometimes i think, what's the point? no one literally needs a "workshop."

we can all teach ourselves by just doing the work.

Sometimes i lose sleep over the fear, "oh no, "ive become a workshop teacher, not a photographer." which is why i'm going to try like crazy to book sessions in every city i visit (but i'll talk about that more in my next post, sit tight and watch for that one tomorrow)

The thing is that every time i'm able to get over myself, hush that annoying inner voice of self doubt, so that i can throw myself into teaching, something special actually does seem to happen -- i truly feel like i help---i know i i try my hardest, i genuinely care, and the people who come really do appear to benefit.

I know this, because they tell me. Although, to be fair, i'm sure the ones who don't politely keep their mouths shut.

The point is, i'm having another go at it in 2015. I don't know if i'll keep teaching them forever or not. some cities fill up crazy fast and i cry tears of joy--- and some cities don't always fill and i cry tears of...not joy.

please read all those words on the promo pic to get an idea of what's covered, as well as go through the faq's. and if you want to save $50, sign up before jan 3o, by clicking one of the links below.

warmly, nervously, warmly nervous?




how long is this thing? 

the workshop is one day only from 9-6 and includes a one hour shooting period in the afternoon. usually the day is wrapped with a non mandatory, informal dinner which spouses are welcome, dare i say encouraged to attend. i will proceed to ask over personal questions about how you met, fell in love, and what your love languages are.

what do i bring?

a laptop, or digital device to take notes with, or just a good old fashioned notebook---i meeeaaannn, i'm not fancy.  a workbook with the workshop information will be provided. its full of prety pictures, made by my friends at artifact uprising and good for taking notes in. bring any camera gear you  plan on shooting with during the day, and all of the questions you can think of. i find it helps to write them down ahead of time because they tend to escape the mind in the moment. silly things.

is there a shoot?

yes, at each workshop i will photograph a family and you are welcome to either observe or participate--its up to you and however you learn best

is this just for family photographers/professionals?

the majority of attendees are professionals (of all levels) and have an interest in shooting families. i would say the emphasis of the workshop is two fold: 1.how to best work with families and 2. how to identify your own unique photographic voice. you do not have to be a professional or family photographer to benefit from the latter. i have had a number of attendees who qualified as neither.

do we eat?

lunch, snacks and drinks throughout the day are complimentary, but if you're gonna hang with us at dinner, its every (wo)man for her/himself! :)

okay but where exactly?

With the exception of London, and Brisbane, for each location, I will be renting a house that the attendees are welcome to join me at to stay for a nominal additional fee of $75. you can arrive the evening before the workshop, and checkout the day after. this will likely be a shared room situation, so do not be alarmed. The location and size of the house is dependent on the number of attendees, and will be finalized 1.5 month prior to the workshop. I am also open to offers to host workshops in your home, please contact me directly photography.yan@gmail.com

does it matter if i shoot film or digital? 

in short, no. i don't believe in medium discrimination! but we will spend some time discussing film, so don't hesitate with all your film questions.

but seriously yan, what makes this workshop different?

i'm gonna have to say the time and attention i spend on getting to know YOU and making sure you walk away from the workshop with what you came for. and that's on top of teaching you everything i've ever learned about family photography in one too short day. every participant gets a question sheet before they come to help me achieve this. i also clock a lot of hours pouring over each attendees portfolio to give them targeted feedback, also pre game day. i even give an assignment to be completed BEFORE the workshop tailored to specific areas of needed growth for each participant. are you getting the picture? this isn't about coming to hang for a day so you can learn how to do exactly what i do exactly how i do it, though i don't hold any of that back. rather, there is a huge emphasis on you and your own personal strengths and journey.  because i care and because i want to see YOU succeed.

is this just a feeling fest?

okay okay, you caught me, there's some of that because i'm not gonna lie---i have found that life success, artistic success, even monetary success in best case scenarios is tied to honoring one's core self, and letting that drive one's endeavors.  figuring out what or who the crap that is can take some work and be a little emotionally uncomfortable. but please believe me when i say that i'm not in the business of selling feelings. this workshop is an intense mix of inspiration, time tested strategy, and tangible tools that have the ability to transform your entire approach to photography and the way you run your business. my goal is to send each attendee away with at the very least, a personalized plan that makes sense for THEM.

can i get my money back?

ohhhh, the most uncomfortable question ever. i would offer refunds if i could, but its a logistical mess on my end! so, all seats once claimed are non refundable. i know, i know, life happens, things come up, we get poor, i get it.  that's why i have no problem with you finding someone to "sell," your seat to, or if you are unable to attend, using your payment as a credit toward a future workshop.

when is my second payment due?

you must be paid in full at least six weeks prior to the date of the workshop you are attending.

let's do this!


CLICK HERE to guarantee your spot in one of the workshops.

the walker famlily at yan fam way workshop in washington d.c.

one time all over the internet, i freaked out because the family i had lined up to model for my d.c. workshop got really sick and i had to scramble to find a replacement. these guys saved me. in other words i won the random internet lottery. perhaps more impressive, is the ease and love of this family that shone through even as they were photographed with a small group of women crammed into the corners of their lovely home, watching them---with a running commentary from me, no less.