Thursday, January 28, 2010

mini-sessions | "window box" portraits

well, if rebranding and growing my business while building a new website was not enough to do in the new year, we are also moving out of our lovely house (and my fantastic studio space.) *sad smiley for that* =(

but, before we move i want a chance to make use out of this great window cut-out i have in my studio. so i am having a day of mini-sessions. these will be approximately 10 minutes in length and will include a fully edited and touched up, professionally printed portrait. you choose the photo and place your order right on the spot. no muss, no fuss! this is a great way to get some quick, fun and affordable portraits without coming for a full one hour session. kids can sit, stand or even just peek through the window. (not really suitable for babies, sorry.)

"window box" mini-session event: saturday february 13th

session fee includes portrait
5x7 = $25
8x10/8x12 = $30
10x20 = $40
(ps - this is a savings of over 30% off of my regular portrait prices. and i will give you a further discount if you order multiple copies.)

call 0404240050 or email to book your session

(pps - if this mini-session idea is a success i will do another one in april for mother's day gifts!)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

location sessions | a day at the beach

one of the things i really want to do more of this year are location sessions. parks, beaches, playgrounds, urban settings... and of course the beach. those of you who know me well, know i love the beach! my girls are such good sports, always willing to let me practice on them. and of course they are such beautiful subjects to photograph! we had fun this cloudy saturday morning at the beach. that is, until ella fell on the rocks and taylor banged her cheek and needed a band-aid on her knee. sometimes photographing your own children is the biggest challenge! =)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

making "executive decisions" is such a power trip!

family shots used to be the hardest part of my photography sessions. like, i really dreaded them. a lot. and then i would spend hours after the fact trying to fix up the photo make it look just perfect: 5 happy faces all looking directly at the camera without that fake smile look. gah! when you work with squirmy babies, tempermental toddlers, and self conscious adults it is pretty daunting to get that perfect, traditional, posed family photo. (big kudos to those of you who have mastered this. i bow at your feet.)

the thing is, every time i went to edit those family sessions i was drawn to the 'outtakes'; you know, those candid, relaxed, silly, sweet, real moments in between all the posing and 'cheese'ing. i spent all my time editing the traditional, posey ones i thought families wanted but what i really loved were the candid ones! so i started taking more of those. and showing families more of those. and i think a lot of people like those ones better too.

so i have made an executive decision. (and since i am the only one here, i get to do that.) no more traditional, posed, "smile-and-say-cheese" family photos for this girl. if that is the type of photo that you love, then i encourage you to find a photographer that will capture that beautifully. but for me, i am sticking to the 'outtakes' =)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

are you following your dream?

" a stay-at-home-mum with no business experience attempts to make a living off some passion and a dream."

that's what i wrote last time. it got me thinking about how my journey started over 2 years ago. with this photo, ella on her 3rd birthday:

of course, i had a play with these shots. with some funky borders and cute quotes and i put a bunch of favorites in a sweet little keepsake album. and my friends said "wow that is really cool, can you do that for me?" so i did. and then their friends said "wow, how much does she charge?" and then i had to decide. was i really going to go for it? i had a point-and-shoot camera, very little knowledge about the mechanics of taking photos and a really distinctive style of dressing up my photos that people liked.

but more important than that, i had this little thing, niggling inside of me. nudging and whispering. i am not sure where it came from or when it started, but i just felt like i was supposed to take pictures. but i was busy, being a mom and moving to the other side of the world and trying to make some friends, and i wasn't really listening to that whisper. i also ignored the whispers about not going back to work teaching and about trying to have my own business... because that is just crazy talk, right?

but when i took those shots of ella and people liked them it was like the whispers turned to shouts. go for it. try it. this is what you are supposed to do. was i hesitant? absolutely. nervous? of course. but when i gave myself permission to pursue those niggling feelings i also felt relief and excitement. and i was lucky because i had fantastic people in my life that told me to go for it - 3 girlfriends in particular have really supported me and encouraged me and passed my name on to everyone they know (thank you my sister/friends H, J & A, i really would never have done this if it weren't for you).

so my question to you is this - do you have a whisper/nudge deep inside of you? a feeling you can't explain and usually ignore that you were just meant to do something? do you need some inspiration or maybe some one fantastic to be your 'people'? (i can be your person, by the way.)

i have recently stumbled upon a couple of great blogs & writers who have some really fantastic things to say about doing what you love. go read these, right now:

his 2 manifestos have really given me the jolt of energy and inspriation that i have needed these last few weeks:

this is another great blog - i am going to read his ebook "the zero hour workweek" next

and finally, this blog is quirky and odd and fun and she talks about 'destuckification' and 'biggification' which is pretty cool

by the way this is ella, 2 years later, on her 5th birthday. i'm pretty proud of how far i have come and can't wait to see what i learn next =)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

i've decided! i would like to introduce....

(wow. now i know why babies take 9 months to be born. parents need that much time to come up with a name! actually naming my photography business has been harder than naming my babies... hmmm. i am not sure what that says about me as a business owner or a parent, but whatever.)

so this is it, i have decided! i have a new name. thank you to my friends and family that have listened to me go back and forth about a zillion times and especially to those of you who have taken time to respond to my ideas and contribute ideas as well. you all rock and i am so grateful to have your support.

as of this moment, my photography and design business is now called:
smile. play. love.

i believe this name is a perfect reflection of me, what i do and why i do it. my new name inspires me and excites me and makes me happy. and it represents the 3 easy steps to turning your favorite photos into amazing memories....

step 1 - choose your favorite 'smile' (i.e. photo)
step 2 - i will have 'a play' - creating a customized design that captures your sentiments perfectly
step 3 - hang it, display it, give it as a gift - whatever you do with it, i promise you will love it!

thanks for joining me on this journey, as a stay-at-home-mum with no business experience attempts to make a living off some passion and a dream. good times =)

Friday, January 8, 2010

more great collage ideas

happy new year! as many of you know, 2010 is going to be a big year of growth and change for me and my photography business i have been putting all of my focus on that lately, but i didn't want to forget to share with you some of the amazing work i did before christmas, you know way back in 2009! perhaps some of these collages will inspire you - we can custom make something that will become a treasured work of art for your family, just as I know these ones have for these families. =)