This lovely young lady is Caelan. Caelan is the oldest of three lovely young ladies. She is creative, and clever, and eager to learn. During her family session, she helped out so much! She was curious about everything and I loved it. She had the maturity of the Big Sister, but still had the precociousness of a little girl.
We got to the end of our family session, and she asked if she could take a picture. Normally, this is a hard NO. My gear weighs about four pounds which is heavy even for me, and being blunt, it costs a crap ton of money. I rarely let anyone touch my gear, like, ever.
However, Caelan showed a *lot* of responsibility so I put the neck strap on her, and kept my hands on the camera body and showed her where to put her hands. I have my camera body set to work a bit differently, so after giving Caelan a quick run down on where to set the “red square” (the focus point indicator), I set the f-stop and shutter speed for her and let her fire off a shot of her sister Ellery:
As we all walked back to the car, Caelan excitedly talked about her picture, looked at her momma with those big, gorgeous, pleading eyes and said, “Can I have my own camera, please?” I mean… my little heart nearly exploded. Lots of adults enjoy photography and try very hard to understand all of what goes into making a photo- not just taking a picture, but actually creating a photograph, but no child has ever taken to it, the way Caelan did in those few minutes. I know her momma is an artist with words, and I know she fosters artistry in her daughters
A few weeks back, I was one of the lucky few who find vintage cameras in thrift shops. I happened upon a Yashica 35ME at Givits Thrift and Recycle. Read about that HERE. I used up one roll of film, with all my fingers crossed that something, anything at all would come out. The camera itself could have had any number of issues; it’s about forty years old and had been lord only knows where its entire life. If it had issues, that would have been fine, buuuuuuut I really wanted it to work.
I sent my roll of film (Kodak Gold 400) off to OldSchoolPhotoLab, paid my fee (more on that later) and thought, “here goes nothing,”. Let me say straight off, OldSchoolPhotoLab is fast like lightening. I mailed my film on Friday- to Dover, NH from Cleveland, OH. I selected high res scans and 4×6 prints. I got my gallery with scans on Wednesday. That’s pretty fast, friends.
So what was on those scans? Oh just things like… And a couple of these…
And then these…
But my favorite shot, of all 27 that came out, is this one. It’s 100% out of focus, but it looks like a memory. Sort of fuzzy, like you know it’s there but you can’t quite make out the details. The soft greens, and the sky through the tree limbs, my daughter’s bike in the lower corner… the shadow of the bridge on the creek bank. I just freaking love this so much. It’s technically garbage being 100% OOF but man. Rules are made to be broken, right?
I can’t wait to get my little prints back! I am going to work on learning the camera’s focus planes, and keep shooting. I am so so so excited to have found this camera. Talk about a great Mother’s Day gift!
For Mother’s Day yesterday, my husband, kids, and I went to a local thrift shop Givits “Thrift & Recycle” (5153 Darrow Rd. Hudson, Ohio). It was so cool- I found exactly what I was looking for (a nice solid wood chair for kids) and…. then I found this beauty. I love it. It was super well priced for what I thought was going to just sit pretty on a shelf in my office. The body is in great condition, it came with it’s original user manual (!!), the only thing that didn’t seem to be working was the light meter. Willing to take a chance, I bought some film (Walgreens, if you’re wondering where I found film that wasn’t Amazon), cleaned up the battery compartment and took it for a little spin.
I have no idea if anything will come out, if there are any other mechanical issues, if there will be light leaks since the seal around the film is pretty rough. But I don’t even care. Being able to fix the light meter myself was so exciting, I nearly cried. I asked my husband to drop the film off back at the ol’ Walgreens to see if anything will come out. They have to send it out, and I can pick up in FIVE DAYS. For real. How am I going to wait five days?! The anticipation might kill me. Are all the shots over exposed, since I didn’t have the light meter working? Did the film even load correctly? What’s my field look like?
If you are a film photographer help a sister out. Where can I send film and get digital negatives back, that I could edit? Is the FindLab the best place to do this? I don’t even know what I don’t know. I am probably putting my cart way before my horse, but hey, can you blame me?
****EDIT*** Turns out WG was a bad, bad decision. I went to pick up the film when they told me I should, and was informed that they hadn’t sent it out yet, and that they may not for UP TO A MONTH. #ohhellno right. I picked the undeveloped film up and sent it to OldSchoolPhotoLab in Dover. NH instead.
It’s Mother’s Day this weekend here in the States, and this week I’ll be sharing some of my favorite #momsinthepicture over on my Facebook page. I was inspired to do so, with help from the good people at Pretty Presets who’ve written up some helpful blog posts to help you get in the picture.
You are worth so much more, than a shaky selfie shot. We get so caught up in how we look; is our “mom muffin” showing? Is our grey hair visible? Can you see the bags under our eyes? These worries make us shy away from being in photos. What message are we giving our kids, when we dog on ourselves over how we look in photos?
Photos immortalize us. They are tangible evidence that WE LIVED. Exist in photos, make sure your children, your children’s children and so on know YOU LIVED.
Check out the helpful bog posts from Pretty Presets Blog HERE! And while you’re at it, why not book a family session for yourself? I’ve got some gorgeous nights available in June AND July that would be perfect for families! Email me, firstname.lastname@example.org for information or to book your session!
I have a week in June and a couple evenings in July that I would *love* to fill with some milestone sessions! If your little one is hitting a milestone, be it 6,8, or 12 months, two years, three or four years, email me! I have an aqua ruffle outfit that miss Top Right (Ellie) let me have that would be so adorable on a girl, 8-12m old 😉
Owen and his lovely momma came to my studio for a 9 month milestone session recently. We were able to head outside and grab a few shots in addition to our studio time when the weather warmed up. It is *so* good to be able to be outside again. I enjoy having babies in studio, but there is really nothing like being outdoors.
I love shooting these milestone sessions. Ages and stages is what it’s all about! Owen had just started crawling a day or so before our session so I really wanted to make sure I got some cute crawling shots. My own daughters never crawled- they went from sitting on their duffs, to walking (they were “late” walkers, so there was a lot of duff-sitting) which makes it so exciting for me to get to live these milestones with my clients. It’s so great that so many people appreciate these moments and realize how fleeting they are; booking these milestone sessions are such a fast and easy way to hold on to these minutes that tick by.
To schedule your milestone session email me! email@example.com.
Kicking it into high gear and welcoming the start of the busy season! I’m shooting Mommy and Me minis this weekend. Keep your fingers crossed that the rain will hold off for a couple hours. If you’re scheduled for a session watch your email; I will only cancel if it’s raining during the time of our scheduled shoot. Spring in Cleveland is temperamental, so even if it’s raining in the morning, it might be sunny and 75 in the afternoon. Our rain date was announced via email last week- if you did not receive that email let me know ASAP.
I’m trading some head shots with a fellow photographer friend this week as well. I’ve been doing some writing and need to submit a headshot along with the articles and I don’t have a current picture of myself. What do they say about the cobbler’s children having no shoes? If you follow wendy b photos on Facebook, you know I’ve been pretty busy; and really taking my own photo would be super boring. I like to be on the other side of the lens now and then! If the articles are chosen for publication, I’ll be sure to link to them here and on my Facebook page.
I’ve got some time that opened back in July, perfect for milestones, family sessions, and newborns! Don’t forget, if you refer a friend to wendy b photos, you both get some sweet kick-backs, so send your friends to over 😀 My August dates are limited, but I’ll be back in September with 4-5 session spaces. It’s hard to believe I’m already looking at August and September bookings!
It’s been a great year thus far; thank you for keeping me busy. I can’t wait to see what the rest of 2017 brings!
Detail collages get me in all the feels. I love seeing those newborn lips, and those mushy cheeks, and the little noses, and those itty bitty ear folds.
When I can, I like to create a little birth announcement for my newborn clients. Even if you don’t purchase 150 and mail them, it’s always nice to have one for yourself. When my daughters were a few months old, maybe even a year old, I finally made a couple for myself and printed a 5×7 of each, then framed those 5x7s in an 8×10 matted frame. Just a suggestion… 😉
No one can resist a nibble on newborn toes. Maddie is no different. I love Mason’s face, looking up to Daddy like, “HAAAAALLLPPP!!!!” Seriously, it’s not like anyone could resist taking a smooch or maybe… nibble.
If you’re expecting in June or July of 2017, email me today firstname.lastname@example.org to set up your newborn session!
I noticed that I had taken fewer shots of my own kids than “usual”. I was working a lot more, and blabla life stuff, but I love taking pictures of my girls. I looked through the pictures I had and realized—they’re all very “posed”. Not terribly much in the way of our daily life or lifestyle. I don’t think I took any pictures at Christmas. I didn’t take my camera to Thanksgiving, and I know it sat at my desk during their birthday (twins man, those birthdays get pretty busy). There are very few of the girls just playing together which is one of my favorite parts of our lives.
I tried to step out of my own box and look at what was holding me back and it hit me when I shared a picture of my cat to FB (on my dinner table being a bad kitty, because of course there was a cat on my dinner table).
My house is a mess. My family room has piles of toys everywhere, legos spread across all surfaces, Barbie clothes everywhere. My kitchen has cups on the counter, and last night’s supper pans in the sink. There are books on the dinner table, and like I said, the cat.
If you follow any lifestyle photographers, you see these gorgeous homes- perfectly cleaned, gorgeous light in every room, nary a dust ball on the floor. And forget a-hole pets on their dinner table.
I thought something else—screw it. We live here. Having a spotless home is not a priority for me. We pick up, but you’ll probably never see our whole counter top. There will always be cat/dog fluff swirling their ballets across the floor. My throw pillows will never be artfully arranged. This is what our lives are- they’re messy and chaotic. And I’m going to be more mindful about shooting us just the way we are. Slovenly pig sty and all 😉
Take the picture. Don’t worry about the mess. Sometimes, life is messy.
So, we made it! 2016 was… well it was something wasn’t it? Professionally the year was awesome for me and I met a ton of great new clients as well as caught up with so many of you loyal WBP friends, I was able to get the direct download option back up and running without glitching and so many of you saw the value in printing your images professionally! My goal was to book 43 sessions this year, I booked over 60. That’s super exciting to me- I only take 3-4 sessions a month, and of course the winter months in Cleveland are brutal for us outdoor, natural light photographers. I thought to myself, “Hey Self, forty-odd sessions would be GREAT, all things considered. You’ll be back in Erie and then visiting the in-laws in New England and not able to work, and who know what winter will be like! Forty-something is a totally good number! Let’s do this!” Then you guys were like, “Oh, it’s on.” And it’s been awesome.
I got to hold and snuggle so.many.babies this year- keep ‘em coming! If you know someone having a baby in 2017, get them in touch with me- I have baby plans for all budgets. If I met your baby in 2016, don’t forget your milestones 😀
Summer this year was so gorgeous- I got to have my first outside newborn session with little Elise! I got to take on a couple boudoir sessions and hire on a hair and make-up artist to help out with that (with more sessions opening up again in June 2017).
Fall came in like a lion and sold out completely within days of my announcing dates and locations.
And even though I was going to take December off to give my eyes a bit of a rest, there was no way I could turn down baby Mason or Jenny in her journey.
This year was such a whirlwind! I am very hopeful that 2017 will be amazing as well. I’m booking March and April right now; I’ll be booking special very limited mini sessions at the end of March which will be shot in April. Thank you all so much for keeping me busy; I hope I get to see all of you this year!