Everyone sing with me, "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year...."
Has it been a long, hot summer for anyone else but me? I love my babies more than life, but it is time for them to GET OUT! Ha!
We all want those nice, first-day of school portraits of our kids. But I will let you in on a little secret. I always take ours the day before. The first day is crazy and stressful enough without momma breaking out the camera at 6:15am.
The Sunday afternoon before school starts, I have the kids pick out what they plan on wearing the first day, and drag them to a field behind our house and shoot away with very little resistance from them. Well, actually that is a lie. They kick, scream and feign illness, but at least its not first thing in the morning and I can handle it much easier! LOL.
My most important criteria is to capture their new outfits, backpacks, ect. And of course to see how much they have changed from last year. It doesn't matter to me if it takes place on the OFFICIAL day, know what I mean?
So ease some of that back-to-school stress, and snap away the day before. Now you will have more time to take candids of them walking/riding their bikes, getting on the school bus, or "gasp" driving themselves to school. (Wah!!!!) Those pictures are important and someday (in a land far, far away....) they WILL thank you for taking the time to document their lives.
There is always SO much to learn when it comes to photography. New techniques, software, editing workflows, ect.
I NEVER want to get to the point where I think I know everything. (In fact, most days I am CERTAIN I know nothing!) We live in such a wonderful age that provides limitless access to information and much of the time it is free! We all know You Tube offers tutorials(and cat videos) But if you are anything like me, you get sucked into a neverending video vortex ("Sweet Brown", "David After the Dentist" and "Charlie Bit My Finger" anyone?? And don't get me started on the makeup tutorials!!)
How about something that is a little more focused? My 2 favorite sources of affordable and sometimes FREE information is Lynda.com and Creative Live.
Let's start with Lynda.com. I first heard of them from a podcast I listen to. (Podcasts are a whole 'nother blog post!!) For only $25 a month, you get unlimited access to over 90,000 (!!!) high quality training videos. You can watch on your computer, Apple TV/Amazon Fire or any mobile device. And learn photography, web and graphic design, software training (Photoshop, Quick Books, Power Point, ext..)and TONS more. Best thing is, you can get 7 days free to see if you like it. And you can cancel at anytime. I often will sign up for a month; watch the videos I need DAY and NIGHT for whatever I am trying to learn and then cancel at the end of the month.
Creative Live is another favorite. This site is incredible! You get training from top teachers in their industry (photography, design, personal finance, video editing, social media marketing, personal health and even scrapbooking!) Best of all, you watch the live broadcast FOR FREE! They have a monthly calendar of upcoming courses that they will run live. You do have to be in front of your computer during that time, but it is FREE!! They only charge a fee ($49-$249 depending on the content) for a replay. Where you can rewatch on your timeframe, get bonus content, ect..
**(Please know, I am not affliated with or get paid from either one of these AT ALL! I just like to share info)**
I am about to shoot another wedding soon. So I will be glued to my computer for the rest of the day learning new techniques, poses, and off-camera lighting. (If you see me on Facebook, tell me to get off and get back to work! LOL!)
Go out there and learn something new!!
When working with my fabulous clients, I try hard to capture the images they want. I ask for their input, any ideas, "must-have" shots, props, ect....... focus on what they want during a session. I also try to keep my editing clean, and natural for them.
But once in a while, I like to take on a personal project. One where I can break rules, try out new editing techniques and chase images that make my heart sing. In doing so, I believe it will make me a better photographer for my clients. I will have new skills, and a fresh vision to bring to a typical session.
Luckily I have a bunch of kids who I bribe, yell at, pay, and generally force to model for me. Haha! I am also blessed to have best friends who have beautiful kids that let me practice on them.
One late afternoon, in downtown Houston rules were broken, inspiration flowed and children were bribed!
In the beginning I was going for an "editorial" shoot of skateboarding.
But as I culled through the images on my computer, I saw a theme emerge. Each individual boy spoke to me. Their unique personalities began to jump off the screen. I then decided to create a series of black and white portraits.
I love the moodiness of a black and white. I love the freedom to express my vision with no expectation or pressure. I simply love photography.
This is my photography club's "10 on the 10th" blog circle. Please go to my friend Maricruz's post, and follow our little circle. Gain some inspiration of your own and just enjoy the eye candy. There are some wonderfully talented ladies here in the Houston area.
Remember that time back in high school when you were self-assured, poised and beautiful?? Um...Yeah......me neither.
But Terrica is all that and more. She is sweet, kind and on her way to a bright, wonderful future.
Seniors are fun to photograph anyway, but this session was a blast! Here are a few of my favorites from that day.
A musician, a reader and a future Aggie. Sounds like a perfect girl to me!
Seriously, just how pretty is she anyway?
Terrica, go and set this world on fire! (and by the way..... "WHOOP!")
How about some color on this icy cold day? (Come on Houston.....35 degrees.....in March....sheesh! LOL!)
I had the pleasure of shooting the sweet kids of one of my besties a few weeks ago.
My girls are all grown up, so it was too fun to play with this cutie pie in pink. (LOVE that bow!!)
Sweet, handsome AND polite 10-year olds are hard to come by nowadays, but that is exactly what this sweet boy is.
I saw a quote recently,
"To the outside world, we all grow old. But not brothers and sisters. We know each other as we always were. We share private family jokes, feuds and secrets, family grief and joy. We know each other's hearts. We live outside the touch of time"
A wonderful truth.
I had a core group of friends in high school, who are still some of my best friends today. There is something about those scary, wonderful, confusing, carefree days and the people you share them with.
I got to spend an afternoon with some of the best and brightest at our local high school. They comissioned me to take "personality" pictures for the yearbook. Most of these kids are in the top 10% of the senior class this year. Don't believe the hype that kids these days are sullen and disengaged. These young people were funny, respectful and scary smart! Best of all, they were all best friends. Love that.
With kids like this, I have no doubt that the next generation is gonna do just fine.
PS. I am a member of a local group of photographers who blog on the 10th of the month. We form a circle to each others posts. So please jump on over to the lovely and talented Jenne Vasquez
It is a great way to gather inspiration, and to discover new talent.
"What God has joined together, let no man tear asunder".
What a priviledge it is to witness strong, Christian families who love each other. And, to capture small moments in their lives and record that love.
Ugh! Could they be any cuter?!
How precious is it that she brought her dolly?
George Bernard Shaw said, "A happy family is but a sooner heaven."
I could not agree more.
Blessed. That is what this little boy is. He has sweet, godly parents who love him to pieces. Not to mention, he is a cutie pie.
Ah....sweet little boy, surrounded by love. Blessed.
I had such a good time photographing this family. Laid back, fun and easy.
No....."Freeze, everyone say CHEESE!" Nope.....not how I roll. I will get you a "smiley" shot, but then, I like to follow you around, and observe. Watch how your family interacts, and then, capture a moment. I have limited sessions available.
Contact me, and lets plan a time to capture a moment in your family.
Little of this and that
Session sneak peaks, family stuff, photography favorites and finds and once in awhile I will go off on a political rant...... Just kidding!