Another reason to “keep on, keepin’ on…”

…So that I can build these kinds of rooms for my grandkids someday – ah-may-zing… check ’em out.

Get ready Boppa – you’re going to have your work cut out for you… 🙂

Get back, Get up, & Balance

No this isn’t a new dance move for you to wow all of your coworkers with at this year’s Holiday Partay – although – feel free to give it a whirl. It is what I want you to remember from edition II of “Tips and Ideas”.

Today I want to give you just a few tips when taking pictures yourself during the holiday season {and always for that matter}. If you’re a really kind sister/daughter in law/cousin like me {hee hee hee}, you still want to make your family look their best after stuffing themselves full of turkey and pie – right? Riiiight… So here we go.

Tip #1 – ZOOM IN – for the love people – please zoom. I don’t care what kind of camera you have – whether it is point and shoot or a big gigantor like me – use the zoom feature! Let me explain. I am sure if you have been on a photo shoot with me – you will notice that I have different sizes of lenses – and you probably wonder why I run back and forth all over the place and get so far away and then zoom in with a huge lens. Why not just put on the smaller lens and save myself the running? I do this for your benefit friends. Using a larger lens and zooming in is much more flattering. Let me pick on Kobe’s football coach for a minute. 🙂 One year when I did their team pictures – he told me he would just send me the coach’s pictures to add to the team composite. When he did my husband and I nearly hit the floor laughing. Every coach looked like he had a giant schnauze – which was great and funny – because they are football coaches and not super models. However –  they hardly even looked like themselves. It was obvious that he turned on the camera and then walked up close to them {instead of zooming} to get the image. I’ll stop trying to explain this and you can just take a looksy for yourself…

{Thanks Coach for letting me pick on you!}

Tip #2 – GET UP! So – this is especially true if you are taking a picture of pretty much any female on the planet. We don’t like pictures of ourselves when someone is shooting up at us. Really – hardly ever. My 11 year old knows to get up on a chair, the stairs , the table {yes – we stand on tables in our house if it means getting a better image} – before ever taking my picture. I don’t have an example of this one because I have deleted every picture ever taken of me from that angle. 🙂 Just trust me – or try it out for yourself!

Tip #3 – BALANCE! White Balance that is. I don’t know if the Point and Shoot cameras have the option to adjust your white balance – but so many people I know now have the nicer cameras that do have the option somewhere in that endless menu. The main ones you can choose from are generally fluorescent, sun, clouds, incandescent etc… Now this is super easy to do – and will make a huge difference in your pictures. Try it out to see – but if you are set on cloudy white balance and shooting in a room with fluorescent lighting – your colors are going to be all off – and vice-versa. Have you ever noticed when you shoot indoors sometimes your images are really yellow? Try choosing the correct lighting scenario in your white balance menu to see the difference. Google your camera name and white balance and most likely it will tell you where to find the menu.

I hope this helps – and hope that you all have a FABULOUS Thanksgiving!

Thanks Mom & Dad!!

Don’t you love how no matter how old you get – you can still turn to your parents whenever you need them? This morning when I was at the downtown studio there was a bit of a sketchy situation, leaving me to feel a little uneasy to go back alone again after dark for my last shoot. Our Wednesday night are crazy with the kid’s schedules, so Matt couldn’t go – so I called up my dad and without hesitation he said he would go with me. It was so fun to have time to hang out with just him. And my mom is CONSTANTLY helping us out. If you have had a shoot on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday – most likely we were able to do that because my mom watched my little ones. I really couldn’t run this business with out all the help and support they give us. So THANK YOU Nana & Boppa! We really appreciate everything you guys do for us!


Lyla, Evie & Fam

Some of you may remember Miss Evie. She is an amazing little girl whose story has touched so many lives, and truly changed ours. It all started a couple years ago with a NILMDTS photo shoot that (you can check out our blog post on it here), then it turned into an amazing story of Faith and miracles (you can see more about that here!). Well – we couldn’t be any more excited to share that Evie just celebrated her 2nd birthday in September. Her family was so gracious to let me do a photo shoot for them. They are one of the most amazing and beautiful families that I have ever had the opportunity to be around. I adore this photo shoot for so many reasons and I hope these memories are something they can cherish forever. Happy Birthday Miss Evie – you have no idea the impact you have had on so many people.

Why we don’t discount…

Every now and then we have what could be potential clients ask us to discount our pricing for them, or give them a special deal. Here’s just a few reasons why we have to say no.

#1 – It’s not fair to our clients that pay full price. Imagine how you would feel if you supported a small business and paid them full price every time you used them, probably even sent referrals to them, and then found out someone else, who is a brand new client, is paying less than you for the same service! You would be irritated to say the least. We would never want to do that to our supportive clients.

#2 – If I walked up to you and asked you to give me $100 cash out of your paycheck, would you do it? Probably not. It’s essentially what is being asked of us though. Photography isn’t just a hobby for me, it isn’t just a silly little thing I do on the side for fun. This IS my job. It’s how we pay our bills and feed our family of six. So asking me to discount my services is like taking money right out of my paycheck.

#3 – It sends the wrong message. We know our prices are higher than Sears. We’d like to think though that our pictures are better, and the experience isn’t even comparable. We consider ourselves a photography boutique. Our clients are willing to pay a little more for the quality of images, the way we shoot, and the experience they have. We don’t want to compromise that – so we also don’t compromise our pricing.

As personal of a business as photography is – it’s easy for the line to get blurred. Our clients become friends, and our friends become clients. Please understand that us charging you isn’t saying that we don’t appreciate the role you play in our lives, but more or less that we love this business and career so much that we want to make sure that we can do it forever.