Wendy’s Time2Shine!

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Today’s blog post may include emotional content. Some images may offend. If so please remove yourself from our page, we’re all adults here.

Paying it forward at its best.

Every month I will be gifting a Make-over Portrait Session to a beautiful soul, if I find her myself or if I’ve been given a heads up. I will find her and I will photograph her and we will share her story.001 (Small)

I love giving, but sometimes giving out free shoots isn’t always appreciated as much as it should be.

But I’ve found my way to give in the photography world.  Gifting a Make-over Portrait session to someone who truly needs their spirits lifted to feel empowered and gorgeous just the way she should. Every girl that leaves our studio feels like a million bucks so I want to give that gift to someone I know would appreciate it and really grow from the magical experience.

So I spoke with Bonnie from Time2Shine Hair and Make-up and told her my plan… She was on board! Then I messaged a family,  who had previously been in contact, who then messaged the beautiful, inspiring, courageous woman and we were in the studio in no time!!!

Meet Wendy, she’s in Christchurch for the weekdays for the last of her radiation treatment and back home with her family in the weekends. Lives on a 10 acre block with her hubby-to-be and their two young sons. a country girl with a green thumb. My type of girl!

We picked Wendy up from the Daffodil Lodge in Riccarton, bought her to our Home and Studio to have the most amazing time! Love and laughter’s, a few watery eyes and hugs were shared.Wendy

Once makeup was done we enjoyed the beautiful day out in our wee courtyard as we nibbled away on fresh club sammies and chatted more before our shoot. Wendy was wonderful to share her story and I took a note in my brain on a few key points I thought I’d share with you all. Wendy diagnosed herself when she found a lump and went straight in to her GP, where they said it was a lump during menstruating. Wendy said No, I know my body and requested a test. Wendy was correct; after receiving the results and doing tests, within 10 days she had her left Breast removed and then proceeded to start 6 Months of Chemo and 3 Weeks of radiation treatment. It was all so fast, she said it was because of private medical insurance which got her in the doors fast and the only reason they had gotten Private medical insurance was for their two young sons.  Still beaming explaining she couldn’t not be positive with the boys at home. Who she just loves to pieces.

Big smiles, watery eyes you could tell this session was doing wonders for Wendy. Letting it out, talking, sharing, and just being her all round positive, loving self.  I could see she was in her zone, it was her Time2Shine. To be beautiful, to be you. 2

Wendy, you are an incredible, inspiring and beautiful woman. A heart of gold, a positive essence like no other. Thank you for allowing us to capture your beautiful and raw emotions and sharing your inspiring story with us. You are a inspirational woman! Don’t forget this.

Wendy left a wee message on my phone after viewing her images, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Does she love or hate these beautiful images? Eeek the thoughts going through my head. But she loved them! Bawling on the phone saying she’s got tears streaming from her face, she loves them! And choose 16 images for us to share with you!


I thought shit, so many beautiful people would love to feel like Wendy does right now. How can I help more ladies feel the way Wendy does now. Brain wave. Help more people! Duh! So I want to do more and more and more! Help more beautiful ladies see they too are beautiful! Feel the way Wendy feels in these portraits. See themselves in a way they thought they never could.4

And it hit me, you should be able to feel the freedom of expressing themselves and their journey through our lens. So I’m starting a project that hits close to home. Already decided a name! Called: “I’m not Broken, I’m beautiful!” Where we all kinda fit the mold.

I stalked Wendy’s FB page and found a little personal post written when she shared a Scar Project photoshoot.

When you look at these images say to yourself  “ Why am I so worried about the size of my arse, I am beautiful just the way I am!! Sometimes life throws crap at you and your don’t have a choice over how your body looks anymore. Don’t be hard on  yourself ladies and learn to love every part of your body and being.”

Wise words Wendy! Thank you for sharing!

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Please feel free to share the love and leave a inspiring comment below for Wendy to see.
If you’d like to nominate someone for our Project I’m not Broken I’m Beautiful session please get in touch.
We do have these sessions available with portion of the proceeds going to our nominated charity.

Thank you for reading our Blog and Wendy’s story!

Have a beautiful day and I’ll see you next time.

Much Love
Laura A

Time2Shine Photography

Lover of nature and food, married and fur mom to two gorgeous shar pei. Been in the world of Time2Shine for Ten Years and loving it! If I'm not in the studio, or renovating our house you'll find me chasing waterfalls, in the kayak or getting lost in some mountains! That crazy kinda lady that loves her Essential oils, Plants and crystals too, and soon to be living in a tiny house, woohooo.


  1. Jacqui says:

    Laura, what an awesome thing to do for someone. Wendy has always been an inspiring person, from the way she and her hubby raise their boys to the things she can do with a piece of dirt, some water and some seeds! She never shys away from a challenge and I’m so happy to see her strong, cheeky and smiling personality come through in these beautiful photos.
    Wendy – you hawt mumma you! I’m truly in awe of how strong and determind you are, not just going throug what you are but in life in general.

    Great work ladies! 🙂

  2. Rochelle says:

    Wow is all I have to say after reading this blog, Wendy you are truly inspirational you could have let this get you down and been all woe is me, but no you are being positive and that smile of yours is amazing, all the best for your tecovery. Gosh so strong

  3. Amanda says:

    What a stronge beautiful lady such an inspiration! Loved the pictures and love the saying “I’m not broken I’m beautiful” 🙂 All the best and kick butt! X

  4. Barbara Waters says:

    OMG my beautiful sister in law, you look amazing, in fact STUNNING (who needs hair). You are so positive, so strong and determined for yourself and your family, that’s what I love about you. Laura, you made her day, showed her how beautiful she is, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  5. Rebecca says:

    What an amazing post Laura! You have done such a wonderful job telling Wendy’s story. And your pictures have captured Wendy perfectly. Her strength, courage, smile, confidence and vibrancy are all evident in these beautiful shots. Wendy you are a star!!!!!

  6. Alix W says:

    You have beautifully captured the heart and spirit of such a beautiful, strong and inspiring woman. Wendy, you look stunning and seeing that big beautiful smile is so heart warming. You are an inspiration for all the woman lucky enough to be a part of your life and you remind us to smile a little more, laugh a little longer, love a little harder and always be grateful for what we have in our lives.

  7. jamie parr says:

    Brave. An inspiring

  8. Fiona P says:

    Wow – I am speechless. What beautiful photos of a beautiful person. Wendy’s personality, strength and love for her family and life have been captured perfectly. You are one hot mumma Wendy.
    ‘I’m not broken, I’m beautiful’ – what a wonderful project, so rewarding for the women and the people behind the project. I really hope this project gives so many women confidence in their bodies.

  9. billie holden says:

    Oh my beautiful Wendy! You are so inspirational and strong. So lucky to have you as my friend and neighbour. Brave beyond words and wise beyond her years. I’d do anything for this woman and her family! Love you Wendy woo! Beautiful work. Love the hat as always! Xxx

  10. Bid & Harry says:

    What awesome photos to end a trying 6 months, you certainly suit short hair! Great to catch up on the phone today after such a long time reminding me to keep in touch more regularly. What strength you have, shine on girl!xxxx

  11. absolutely beautiful.

  12. Toni Coleman says:

    You are the strongest person I know, there was no way you were going to let your family or friends see you feel sorry for yourself. You know we are always here for you and as I told you when you shaved your hair off…..you were still our Wizzy and those big eyes were stunning! With these photo’s, you are beaming and absolutely stunning. You have taught me and others, life is too short to not do the things you want.

  13. Di Lake says:

    WOW, you brought tears to my eyes “happy tears” You are amazing with your strength and a strong bond for your loving family that will always be there for you. You are certainly a inspiration to all woman going through this long and hard journey . You don’t look “broken” to me ! Just beautiful ! xxx

  14. Jo Doyle says:

    Beautiful BEAUTIFUL Wendy!!! Inside and out. The photos are amazing. Such an inspiration to all of us. We are all so proud of you. Love always. xo

  15. Sarah says:

    Wow, Wendy as always you look gorgeous. You certainly are one brave, inspirational, beautiful lady. You are incredible in the way you have dealt with the past ‘tough’ year in such a positive and proactive way, always with your family as your core driver….. You are a role model for us all. Not many sessions to go now….wahoo, go you, looking forward to all the happy days ahead.xxx

  16. allanah says:


  17. Kim Mehlhopt says:

    Well done Ladies! Shows what a bit of positive Girl Power can do… Feminism and Sisterhood at it’s best! 🙂

  18. Julie says:

    WOW = fantastic! These photos are so awesome, and you Wendy are such an inspiration. You look great. Such a brave and courageous person – who always puts others first. Thank you for your smile & positivity, and for sharing. Lunch is on me next time.

  19. michelle dempsey says:

    Wow Wendy you are beautifu. I met you at Frank and Rochelles wedding. I hope youve had fun catching up with him this week. I know he was really looking forward to it. You are an inspirational woman courage beauty and pizazz! Amazing photos what a beautiful thing to do for woman to empower them again. Love and best wishes xxx

  20. Thank you all for your beautiful words.
    I am ever so grateful to have meet Wendy and I am so thankful I get to keep Wendy as a wonderful friend.
    Thank you Wendy for being amazing and allowing us to do this. And to allow me to be apart of your life!
    You my friend are the reason I love doing what I do. Meeting wonderful people like yourself and becoming life long friends. You rock girl!

    Much Love
    Laura <3

  21. Stephanie says:

    Hello there! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same niche.
    Your blog provided us valuable information to work on. You have done a extraordinary job!

  22. Wendy Burgess says:

    Hey there everyone.Thankyou all so much for your positive,encouraging,loving comments.This has been quite some journey for my family & I.We have experienced soooooooooo many emotions its not funny!! The one thing we have learnt is that emotions are felt for a reason & they help us deal with anything in life.
    Meeting Laura & doing this photoshoot has been a huge highlight for my own personal development through having had cancer.I felt cancer had stripped away any physical beauty I may have had.I wanted to feel on the outside how I felt on the inside,strong,powerful,beautiful,in control of this cancer.Laura helped me feel beautiful again & I will be forever grateful to her & my family for making it happen.Cancer can “KIss my ass”xoxoxox

  23. Leanne Rolleston (nee Delamere) says:

    Wendy, you are brave, you are awesome! Still beautiful, always will be xx. From ya Hauturu School mate, Leanne

  24. Cathie says:

    I have no words to say that could possibly match your most amazing attitude for the future and life itself. If I ever have to walk in your shoes I hope my strength is as great as yours. Journeys are given to us for a reason – you have embraced and travelled yours – you are awesome. Much love xxx (Rachael’s mum)

  25. Jan Crone says:

    wonderful . A lovely Lady.

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