Now and then, a parent will tell me about a quirk their child has. “He makes this really strange face when he smiles,” “She gets really shy,” “He is really, really silly,” I understand they may feel nervous about having paid for photos and I do my best to assure them that these things are 100% OK. Plus, it’s sooo nothing new :*) My kids may or may not suffer from “Photographer’s Kid Syndrome”. They’re really good about sitting and being my little models most of the time, but sometimes….
sometimes we just need to blow off steam and be silly. It’s also nice for me to remember that I can use my camera for fun, not just for work! Also, see that cross-eyed babe in the top… oh yea. That’s me! Bringing professionalism to a whole ‘notha level 😉
Want to have some fun? Email me! email@example.com!!
Oooooh, bright shiny lights. I love how the tree is glowing and the lights are bursting, don’t you? I’m going to talk you through how you can take a picture of your family’s tree (if you have one). You will need a basic understanding of photography, you’ll need to understand shutter speed, but that’s not super hard 😀
- tripod or something sturdy to set your camera on
- camera with timer and manual settings
- pretty lights to photograph (I have a crap load of lights on my tree and still want MORE! ahaha)
- an dark night… ooh
You might want:
So, first things first- turn off all the lights. Light is the number 1, most important thing you need when taking pictures, and in this case, you need to eliminate all outside light because you want the only light source to be your tree.
You’re going to set your shutter speed to a really, slow, really long which is why you need something sturdy to set your camera on. Any tiny movement will RUIN THE SHOT FOREVER! Well, ok, it’ll just ruin that one shot but you’ll have to reshoot and if you’re a perfectionist, that’ll drive you crazy. My shutter speed on the above was 13 seconds– the shutter was left open for 13 full seconds allowing all the twinkly light to enter. I had my ISO turned as low as I could, which is 100. Your ISO setting tells your camera how much available light there is- a low number means there’s lots of light and the camera doesn’t need to compensate for that. A high number means there’s very little light. Logically, you’d want to set your ISO to a higher number since there is very little light- BUT in this case we are going to make up for the low light with a slooooooooow shutter speed.
I closed down my aperture to F-11; there’s a long explanation about the blades in your lens and angles, so you can read up on the specifics and I encourage you to but I’m not going to get into it all. You’re going to want to be stopped down to at least F-11, the further down you’re closed the more dramatic your burst will be.
Next, you’re going to frame up your shot. Select your focus point, you can pretty much just point it toward the middle and go at it. Your lens will be stopped down so almost everything will be in focus. Remember, you need something sturdy to hold your camera or you’re going to get motion shake. Use a tripod, or, rig up something sturdy to angle your camera correctly. If your camera has a timer setting USE IT. If your camera has a remote setting, invest in a remote. I use the word “invest” loosely–I have this little guy . $7 folks. Worth it if you have a Nikon DSLR (there are millions for Canon and other bodies as well). Go ahead now and take your first shot. How’d it look? Good? No good? Post your picture to my Facbook page wendy b photos. If you don’t like what you got, shoot again!
You can use the settings I have listed as a starting point, but if your photo isn’t “right” make adjustments and try again. Every situation is different, you may have more or fewer lights on your tree, you might have more ambient light, make the adjustments for YOUR specific situation. And, feel free to ask for help 😀
f-11 13″SS 100 Iso
Jacob’s mom Deb is the amazingly talented owner of Sensational Cakes… and More which is an incredibly bakery in Solon, OH. Deb made my daughter’s 5th birthday cakes! When she asked if I could take her son Jacob’s senior photos, I knew in .02 seconds that I would find the time to get him in. The family is hosting an AFS student from Argentina, so Deb asked if I could get a shot of him and Jacob’s brother as well. No prob 🙂
We met at the park and got right to it! Photographing teenaged boys can go any number of ways- many times guys are shy and uncomfortable in front of the camera. Not Jacob. Jacob was a pleasure to work with. While I was shooting, he told me that he is a member of NFTY- the National Federation of Temple Youth and that he is the Religious and Cultural Vice President of his temple youth group. He plans on studying computer sciences and being an IT professional (when you graduate Jacob, give my husband a call!) He plays trumpet in the Solon High School band, and also plays guitar and sings. He told me about a time at band camp when he and friends were playing a game and he plowed right over and into a garbage bin :*) He asked me to take a couple shots of him near the bins, because the kid is hilarious. There’s more to the story if you know Jacob, ask him to tell it to you. Smart, talented and totally well rounded.
See for yourself:
I couldn’t have asked for a more cooperative, more charming young man. Jacob, you’re a great guy and I hope you get everything you ask for! Let me know if you get to be a Spartan!
After I posted a little twinkly light teaser on my Facebook page, my friend Ashley asked if I could fit her kids in. Her son and my daughters were in the same Kindergarten class, then they had t-ball at the same time. Ashley and I got to know each other walking laps around the t-ball park- she was pregnant with Xavior at the time and due any minute! It’s been so fun getting to know these three (and daddy Ryan and hound-dog Charlie, too). Ashley wanted to get some photos for Ryan to keep at work, and I think we got some great ones.
Aren’t those boys perfection?
And, totally tooting my own horn, but how awesome are those lights? So soft and warm. I’m so 100% offering mini lights sessions next year. Leave a comment or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to be sure YOU get a mini session!
The Monday before Thanksgiving, I got word that one of my expectant moms in Erie had her baby!! I was heading back home for dinner with my family in North East, so we set up to shoot on Black Friday. Little Raylan was a bit fussy when I got there, so his mommy Donna took a few minutes to feed/ top off the tank and soothe. I have no problem photographing an awake newborn, but a crying or uncomfortable one is a different story. I schedule 2 hours for a newborn session, but can take up to four if need be. This was going to be a session where the baby is posed which can take a longer time, but once he settled, we were good to go! His aunt made him the little turkey hat– so cute!
I got a good number of photos…
… before he woke up again! Babies man, unpredictable. I got to give him some cuddles and snuggle him down again. He was sleepy but not asleep; I got this super cute yawn and oh mah geez, love it
Thank you, Donna for the morning of sweet baby snuggles ::puffy heart::
other vendor information:
fox hat, cheesecloth wraps in pumpkin and honeydew: Red Owl Photo Props
owl hat: M Roche Crochet
When Catie asked me if I had any space this fall for her family, I was left a little speechless. You see, her family lives quite a ways away from me. In fact, they live almost four HOURS from me. She wanted to bring her family up to me. To say I was touched and flattered would be a massive understatement. I’ve met Catie before and she is one of the kindest people. One of the first things she said to me was, “How’s Zoe?” Zoe is my 11 year old Shiba Inu who has been blind from glaucoma since she was three. And that’s something Catie remembered, because she’s amazing and thoughtful.
I hadn’t met Rocco or their three daughters before but they are just as exquisite as Catie. Rocco looks like Mark Ruffalo, doesn’t he?
It was really cold for our session but there wasn’t a single complaint. The girls were total pros. There were lots of smiles and hugs and cuddles. There was even a little Rosie dog cameo!
Thank you so much, Catie for bringing your family to me and trusting me with your girls (and little Rosie). It was an absolute pleasure spending time with your family!
Jess and her mom Amy came to me on a chilly October day for Jess’s senior photos! I had been emailing with Amy and was looking forward to our session and working with Jess couldn’t have been easier. She is a student athlete playing softball and cheerleading (recently won a cheer competition in Avon, wooo!) and would like to go on to study pediatric nursing after graduation. She has a perfect smile, perfect attitude, and was a dream to work with. Here are just a few of my favorites from our session.
Jess is the perfect example how to work your senior session (could I say “perfect” one more time? ha). Her make up was spot on-light and natural looking but also bold and accentuating her gorgeous eyes. Her outfits were casual and fun, very much reflective of her personality. She wore layers so that outfit changes were quick and seamless. She was relaxed and went with the flow of our session! She truly was a wonderful model and I have high hopes that she gets accepted to her first-choice college!