Summer 2019 Dates! {cleveland family photographer}

My summer dates are below, with a special sale session coming, just for the littles! Times are approximate and can be adjusted in most cases. Don’t see a date you were hoping for? EMAIL ME. For real. Don’t feel weird about it 😉

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Don’t miss out! Summer is my favorite season to work in- there is nothing like Cleveland’s summer after a yucky winter! Winter will be back here before you know it. Book your session by emailing wendy@wboycephotos.com

The one about the Thing {cleveland writing photographer}

Just as a heads up, there won’t be a heck of a lot of photos in this, and it’s super personal (albeit a bit rambling).
I have always thought that every person has a thing that they’re supposed to do with their lives. Some people are born knowing their thing- my sister wanted to be a nurse. She’s a nurse. My friends wanted to be teachers- they are. Some people wanted to be parents. Josh’s thing was abstract- “be successful” and for him, a goal he reached in 2015. He knew the path to get there- MIS degree, master’s degree, busting his ass working, getting the right promotion. And that’s it. He hit his thing.
The only thing I ever wanted, was to be famous. That’s it. And that’s not even a real thing. It’s not like that’s something you can attain with hard work, degrees, know-how. It’s just, not.a.thing. But it was MY thing. And here I am, staring down the barrel of 40, with nothing. Literally. No. Thing.  I mean, I have wendy b photos (WBP), but is that my thing? I don’t know. It feels like it, right?

Me, 6yo. Not famous. My Grandpa had this picture of me in a tiny golden frame until he died in 2006.

I own a business and I would love to grow it. Photography is great, and I love it, and I’m lucky I get to do it. There are a billion things I’d love to do with WBP, I have a head full of ideas, a notebook full of amazing clients, and an Amazon wishlist a mile long 😉
There is so much I want to do in the photography world. I want to take more babies, milestones and sitters. I want to make use of studio space and offer MORE for the community. I’d love to teach photography basics! But all I hear, in the back of my mind, is HOW. HOW can I do these things, when the market grows smaller and smaller all the time? HOW can I reach people, when social media actively works against me? HOW can I bring in more referrals, when I know so many of my clients already are doing so much for me HOW can I rent studio space, not knowing if I can make ends meet? HOW DO I DO THIS? (for real though, how?)

All of these thoughts about my “thing” have been sitting in my brain recently and really taking up a lot of space because I was offered a job. A few weeks ago, I uploaded a resume to a job site. Since I have basically no work experience outside of WBP in the last nine years, I did not expect to see any action. I uploaded and sent “apply” to one job on a Saturday. I thought, you know what- just throw a resume out there. If nothing happens, it’s fine. Spring will be here and I want to do styled sessions and find a way to do glitter/ shimmer sessions, and then summer will be here and I want to shoot warm light, and then it’s fall and crazy time again. Apply for something, do something scary. So I did. And they called. I interviewed unsure of what I would do, if I was offered the job because interview practice is always good. A few weeks later I was made an offer. And that shocked the blessed crap out of me.

I had already made a commitment to something else in the weeks it took to hear back from the job. The thought of trying to find someone to help care for the girls over the summer was overwhelming. And every penny I made, would go right back out the door over the summer for child care. And I technically don’t NEED to work, WBP does fine for me. So, there were a lot of scary things screaming in my face. I sent out the SOS to my dearest friends who answered in lightening fashion and set my mind at ease. A, M, and T- free photos this summer 😉 My husband is working on being home more to help with the summer as well, and I’m trying to learn as much as I can about summer care for them.

I accepted. Is this job my thing? No, probably not. But it’ll give my mind something else to do rather than focus on and feel drown by all the HOW, and you never know what relationships you can build with new opportunities! I feel ready for the coming learning experience, and excited to add this work to my life. I feel, normal. Today after I make the girls their lunch and give them hugs and kisses before school, I’m going to put on real clothes, and go to work for a few hours outside of my home office, like a regular person. And that is super exciting to me. If you have a thing, I hope you’re living it. If you’ve not- I hope you enjoy the journey.

Me, 39yo. Still not famous, but living it up ❤ Thanks, Deb for the photo!

The time I saw Maui {cleveland traveling photographer}

In January, I had the incredible opportunity to travel to the island of Maui, Hawaii. My dear friend Deb, the owner of Sensational Cakes…and More in Solon invited me to join her and her parents at their condo in Kihei and after two years of hemming and hawing (and saving every single penny from Wendy B Photos) I took the plunge. I bought a plane ticket in October, and flew out Jan 15th, 2019. As a person with serious motion sickness and water fears, flying to an island, 4500 miles away was a massive challenge. But I did it, and I did it alone. I met Deb and her loving mother Jane in Kahului airport at 1230am, EST, 730pm, their time. And I cried.  I had left my home in Cleveland at about 545am. The travel itself went *really* well, and I have to give the people at Delta huge props. Everyone I had contact with, was helpful and friendly.
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Hello room to stretch out! My janky knee was appreciative! 

It was dark when I landed, so there was’t much to see, but in the morning…

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Kahoolawe island, dead ahead

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Molokini crater and Kahoolawe Islands. They looked so close, but were 3 and 5 miles away!

I had planned to shoot film, the entire trip. I ended up shooting five rolls, but also had my cell phone (the photos above are iphone). The following images are film shot on a Nikon F100, with Fuji400 and Fuji400h film of my first days:

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My view of the West Maui Mountains- see the wind turbines! Hooray for renewable energies! The Maui Vista condo complex also has solar panels on the roofs! 

While we had thought that my first day would be one where I got caught up (I’ve never had jet lag before, for real, my travel book is nearly empty) I was ready to ROLL. I got to see lava fields, and coral; hadn’t ever seen either.  The white flecks are coral pieces. Don’t worry, I didn’t take anything. Makena Paia Lava-30

I saw beaches with some crazy soft sand on Makena and at Charley Young Beach

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I saw Pu’u Olai which I learned is a cinder cone from Haleakala!

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None of this trip would have been possible, without Jane and Fred Litt, who operate Maui Condo by Owner with help from Deb. I stayed with them, in their home on the island. They rent out several condos in Kihei, right in the perfect area. Everything is walkable, the beaches are directly across the street. If you have any thoughts about visiting Maui, check out Maui Condo By Owner.
I’ll be sharing more photos from my trip shortly, and heads up- if you’re into sunsets and beaches, and like to give yourself tropical vacation envy make sure you check back!

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Welcoming Bodhi {cleveland newborn photographer}

Winter newborns in full effect 😉 Spending time with Heather, Andrew, and precious Bodhi was wonderful. They were such naturals. Their clothing was perfect, natural and neutral without being fussy. If you ever have questions about what to wear for your session, let me know! I’m happy to help with selections.
Sweet Bodhi snoozed through our session and must have been having sweet dreams; check out that little

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Sweet Bodhi snoozed through our session and must have been having sweet dreams; check out that happy face!

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Yep, newborn smiles happen! Right place, right time ❤ Look at that little baby fuzz!

 

We laid Bodhi in his crib and Andrew made sure he wasn’t lonely… Bodhi settled right in and snoozed ❤ bgn-57wmbgn-67wm

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Yep, more smiles! love love love…

Being able to work in my client’s home is really awesome. It allows everyone to relax, not stress out about bringing all the baby things (and momma things) anywhere! My families never need to worry about picking up or making sure the house is tidy– I’m a mom, too. I am 100% not judging. I often times tell clients who make apologies for their home that I have been there, times two as a twin mom! I am a master at moving whatever needs to be moved out of frame 😉

If you or someone you know is expecting in 2019, make sure you give them my info (wendy@wboycephotos.com : Session Information Here! ) When your friend books, you BOTH earn a little bonus!

wendy b photos roundup {cleveland family photographer}

2018 seems to have gone by really quickly- I remember being freaked out about going to Costa Rica with my husband for a weekend trip he earned at his place of business. I get scared to travel anywhere (I’m mid mental breakdown about a trip to Maui, HI I’m taking very shortly). Even though I like going to these cool new places, I get totally freaked out. Leaving my kids, my responsibilities… shouldn’t I be trying to book work rather than take time off? Ugh. This Maui trip is messing with my head pretty badly, especially when I look back and see I didn’t book a single thing for January but to be fair, my daughters have been out of school until the 7th, I have to be back home in PA on the 12th for an event, and I leave on the 15th, almost all of my weekends are spoken for.
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I tried to set focus, and handed my camera to my husband. One shot came out.

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I got to shoot some really great newborns, and I’m looking forward to meeting even more babies this year (it’s never too early to book your newborn session, please PLEASE do not wait until the last minute).
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I shot so.much.film; I loved every freaking second of it. There hasn’t been a single shot that I was like, “Oh dang, missed it,” because even the shots that don’t come out perfectly, are perfect. Photography has always been about the moment, right? So sometimes, what matters isn’t what is “in focus” but what’s going on around the focus. Maybe that’s too meta. IDK. So many pictures of 2/3rds of our cats (the tuxedo cat is Fiffen/ Olive, the orange and white one is Beep)…

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So many pictures of my long suffering daughters who are juuuuust about finished being my little models…

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Cakes, and milestones, and families…. 2018 was a pretty full year of lots of good things.

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Best Tummy of 2018 ^^

I don’t have any idea what 2019 will bring. If we’ve worked together, I’d love to see you again. I’d love for you to tell a friend about your experience, I’d love to give you both referral credits 😉 I’d love for you to ask for a film session (yes, I am offering film for client work now). I’d love to keep growing this business. I really would. Every year it gets harder and harder, but you guys keep me going and I thank you for that. On to 2019 friends. Let’s see what we can create together. Check out https://www.wboycephotos.com and when you’re ready, email me: wendy@wboycephotos.com. Whatever you want, we can make it happen. 

Mighton Family {cleveland family photographer}

In usual Cleveland fall fashion for 2018, our scheduled session date was a total washout. Luckily, Tammie, Adam and the girls were able to scoot out during a few good hours for a reschedule! 

The family had recently lost their sweet kitty, so when Mila wanted her kitty Smokey to be part of the session, I was happy to oblige ❤ 

Beauties…

Elena had broken her arm, but I had no idea! She is such a natural with posing, I didn’t realize until we had begun shooting. Tammie, her mom let me know that she was in a cast! I could photograph light through that gorgeous hair every single day… you know, if Cleveland had sunshine more than 1x a month. 

Sister snuggle and a moody black and white ❤ Aren’t they adorable?
It’s never too soon to book your family session, and if you go under contract prior to 12.30.18, you’ll lock in 2018 session fee. There is a significant price increase coming in January of 2019, so it may behoove you to book early 😉 

wendy@wboycephotos.com or wwww.wboycephotos.com for session details and booking information

Photography how to: create star bursts

    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 😀
    You’ll need:
  • 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:

        • a remote shutter release

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 😀

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Space for everyone {cleveland family photographer}

Every year for the last five years, I have done family sessions for Jackie and her husband Greg, and Greg’s sister Leanne and her family. This year, Leanne moved away (all the sad faces, but happy that she’s happy!) and Jackie asked if we could do a family session… but with all the Fryz women! 

Extended family sessions are so special. They make the family tree a visual. When your kids are growing, they’ll look at these pictures and say, “That’s Aunt Missy! That’s Aunt Jackie!” They’ll see themselves as part of a bigger whole. They’ll see their cousins….

They’ll see the smiles and laughter while playing with their Papa

They’ll see the funny faces Mommy made, the time Daddy held on for dear life, because they wanted to run and play, they’ll see aunts, uncles, Gigi and Papa…and they’ll know these are their people, and their people are love.

Schedule your own extended family session for the 2019 year, by emailing wendy@wboycephotos.com 
Show your babies, the legacy they are part of. 

Beautiful Lilly {cleveland newborn photographer}

This post is a long time coming. Miss Lilly was born in March to one of the best educators my daughters have had to date. Lilly’s mom is so special to me and I was so touched that she asked me to photograph her precious daughter. Lilly had a bit of a bumpy start, but I was able to go to the NICU, when as luck would have it, Lilly would be released that same day!

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After Lilly had gotten settled in at home, I went to Diana and Dave’s home for Lilly’s newborn session. I brought a few of my things with me, but Diana had some special pieces she had let me know she wanted to include. One of those things, was this lovely broach that had belonged to Diana’s beloved Grandmother who had sadly passed away the night before Lilly’s birth. Lilly is named after her Great Grandmother ❤

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Look at that smile, in her Daddy’s hands! llh-47wm

Lilly had a number of gorgeous blankets and quilts made in her honor! This quilt was a little too large to wrap Lilly in just yet, but it made a beautiful backdrop. llh-93wmllh-98WM

In a few short days, I’ll be photographing Lilly again, and I cannot wait to see her momma and daddy, and of course, get some snuggles in. Book your 2019 newborn session TODAY by emailing wendy@wboycephotos.com.
See www.wboycephotos.com for session information and pricing details

Photography and Stress {cleveland family photographer}

While I was working over the weekend, my client Steve said he was talking with a friend and mentioned they were having family photos taken. The friend groaned and said, “Don’t tell my wife,”. I laughed—men not being “all in” when it comes to family photos is nothing new. There are even a good lot of women who opt out of being part of their family’s photos. But why is that? Why is there push back, when it comes time for those family photos?

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Stress.

What’s the first thing you do, after signing your contract and submitting your retainer? If you’re like 97% of my clients, you start shopping or rummaging through dressers searching for The Perfect Outfit. While I’m guilty of this myself, I can’t quite understand why we stress about what to wear. Sure, we don’t necessarily want large prints of our kids with peanut butter on their faces, in their ratty sweat pants (my daughters haven’t worn jeans since Kindergarten) but does it *really* matter? I tell my clients, you do NOT need to be in your Sunday Best; clean pants or dresses, complimentary colors, weather appropriate and you’re all set. I’ve seen far too many moms work themselves into a tizzy, over pattern combinations, color coordination, hair and make up,  thoughts about their weight, and let’s not even get started with “will they behave or won’t they,”.

I want everyone considering me for their photography to know Pinterest Perfect is NOT real.  More important than everyone ‘sit-stay-smile-look’ is the genuine interaction. At one of my shoots over the weekend, this sweet little one picked up his shirt, and shared his belly with me. And I love that. I love it, because he was so comfortable, he was so happy, he was so three-years-old. I love that his siblings are all looking at me and that he is 100% toddler awesomeness.

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TUMMY!

When you’re feeling overwhelmed, who do you find yourself snapping at most?  If you’re like me, it’s the very people you’re hoping to get those happy smiling photos with. They see you worried about things and in turn, it upsets them. Your spouse may see you getting upset and wonder why you do this every year which frustrates them, then you get even more frazzled because what the heck are THEY so worried about when you’re the one doing everything!? (sound familiar?)

Please believe me when I tell you, you do NOT need to worry about Picture Perfect. It’s ok if you all throw on something you already own. It’s ok to mix pattern and color. Pattern it up! See the above, the stripes and plaids and solids? It looks so good together! It’s ok, if your toddler shows me his tummy. It’s ok if you weigh more than you did, your freshman year of college. If you’ve not worked with me before, I’ll just tell you right now- my sessions never last more than 45 minutes. This gorgeous family of eight? Forty-five minutes. I can get smaller families done, in and out in 30 minutes, even if your toddler takes his shirt off. If your partner is on edge about “how long do we have to be here?” you can tell them, 45 minutes tops. 😉

When we chill out, accept that all things aren’t Pinterest Picture Perfect and realize THAT’S OK we find ourselves and those around us actually enjoying photo sessions. I promise, it’s going to be better than you think, so shed the stress and the worry. Just come, hang out. It’ll be good!

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See? Having a good time! No worries!