Thursday, April 9, 2015

My NEW Add-a-Baby Background Collection

 
This photo is one of my favorite summer portraits
and the customer bought a large canvas wrap of her child
glowing in a field of wildflowers under golden sunshine!
 
Would you believe that adorable little girl wasn't even
in the basket when I took the photo???
 
I photographed her in my backyard, then added her to the basket in Photoshop!
 
 
I LOVE photographing babies and children outdoors, but it is difficult and
many times impossible to get children to the locations
where I want to shoot.
 
So, I started taking my props to the locations and photographing
them without the kids.
 
I did this in every season and pretty location
I could find.   I often rode the prop on my bicycle to
remote wildflower fields, snow-covered landscapes, and
dazzling fall leaf locations that were not accessible by car.
 
 
I photograph the children in similar light and
add them to the props in Photoshop.
 
The backgrounds allow me to create the exquisite portraits
that I see in my mind, but would be almost impossible to
accomplish with young children.
 
After many years of creating...and tons of use in my
own portrait photography business...
I am extremely proud to release my
 
Add-a-Baby Background Collection!
 
 
The collection comes with 44 exclusive backgrounds with
props ready to add a baby or child. You will receive
two bonus haze overlays, too!  
 
The set includes a video tutorial
showing you exactly how to add a child to the backgrounds.
 
It's EASY because of the prop!
The most difficult part about compositing someone into a
new background is making it look like the child isn't floating
over the new background.
 
The prop eliminates this issue because it is already
grounded in the photo!

 
Following my simple video tutorial,
you will be compositing babies and children into my
backgrounds like a pro in no time if you know
the basics of Photoshop or PSE.
 
 
These backgrounds are wonderful if you have
your own portrait photography business!
 
I have pleased many customers with them.
 
 
 
 
The collection includes backgrounds for every season!
 
 
 
 
I carved out a giant pumpkin
to create some fun autumn backgrounds
that I have used over and over!
 
 
 
 
I even braved the cold to photograph baskets
and bassinets in the snow.
 
 
 
Christmas cards were simple with my Ho, ho, ho basket in the snow!
 
 
 
My Add-a-Baby Background Collection includes
44 Beautiful backgrounds for every season
 
PLUS two bonus haze overlays...one golden and one white
 
for $49.99 

To purchase, click here: 
Buy Now
 
 
I am passionate about helping others learn photography and editing.
 By purchasing any of my collections, you are allowing me to continue writing this
blog and offering my photography and editing tips, tutorials and many freebies!
 
Thanks for your support!
 
I know you will LOVE this collection!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Easter Poses

 
Hoppy Easter!
 
Just wanted to hop by and share some easy ideas for
Easter portraits with young children.
 
This is my great nephew Joey who was 10 months old in these photos.
I was visiting my sister in Cincinnati, so I didn't have any
fancy studio or lighting.
 
We simply set up in her living room:
 
 
You can do the same thing by hanging a
white blanket or sheet in the background
like we did.  Have your little makeshift studio
facing a window...preferably a full length or sliding glass door.
 
I added bokeh from my Bokeh Overlay Collection to the background.
 
 
 
Look at all the props and MESS we created...ha ha!!
 
I hope you will try one of these make-shift studio shots
with your kids.
 
 
Here are a few more Easter photos taken in a similar situation.
 
 
 
 
 

 
I set up this next cute little scene for a one-year-old.
 
WHY did I EVER think this would work for a one-year-old?
 
 
The mother put her down and this happened
IMMEDIATELY:
 
 
Natural is always so much better than...
 
 
Posed!
But these are pretty darn cute:
 
 
 
 
Those are some ideas for some CUTE Easter Portraits!
Take some EGG-celent photos!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

More Ways to Create Motion in Photos

 
Last week, I wrote about my ONE technique that changed my
portrait work FOREVER...
 
 
Yes, this photo of Alyssa in the field with balloons is
very pretty...
 
 
But this next version is ALIVE and
MOVING!
 
 
I want to show you more examples and ways to create motion
or movement in your photos.
 
Mostly, I want to inspire you to challenge yourself, and REALLY look
for ways to capture emotion, talents, and interests
by creating motion in your portraits!
 
This is how the creative process played out for me while doing
a senior portrait shoot last summer:
 
This is a perfectly nice photo of Senior Abby who is a pitcher on her
high school softball team.  She wanted to wear her uniform in some of
her senior portraits.
 
Most photographers would take a shot like this.

                                                      I did...but I thought it was boring.
 
How can we add movement????
 
 
Yes, this is clever...the ball is in the air, and she is reacting to it.
 
But, Abby is a pitcher.  I want her pitching!
 
 
Now, this is some movement!
And, she's pitching!
 
I better DUCK....FAST!
 
 
Let me take it one step further...a close-up
to really capture the intensity of her face!
 
 
Okay, so I added the softball in Photoshop.
Always consider what you can do with editing
to take the action a step further!
 
I carefully thought out this shot, capturing her in action, while
keeping sharp focus on her face.
I even photographed the ball out of focus knowing
I would add it later in Photoshop!
 
I constantly challenge myself to
go beyond a regular, boring, posed snapshot and
create ART!
 
I always ask myself this question when someone is paying me
to do portrait work for them:
 
Could they take this photo with their phone????
If they can, it's a snapshot.
 
They are paying ME to go beyond a snapshot and create ART!
(That's my biggest tip for portrait photographers!)
 
Study my lesson in how to set your camera and shoot action and movement
in  THIS BLOG POST.....then
 
PRACTICE!!!
 
 
I know it seems complicated, and it takes time and courage
 to practice and set the camera
to shoot the motion.
 
But you will become an artist in the process.
 
 
I asked Susie to skate for me on her backyard rink
 so I could practice these techniques a few years ago.
(Actually pretty dumb to try this in the winter!)
 
I was FREEZING!  My fingers were numb! 
I goofed up SO MANY TIMES!
I was embarrassed because poor Susie was getting dizzy!
 
"Susie, can you do that spin AGAIN for the 20th time?  Pretty please??
 

 
 
Can you change outfits so I can try another 50 times???"
 
This is the shoot when I finally caught on how to do it!!!!!!
 
When you step out of your comfort zone and TRY...
you grow....
and grow...
and GROW...
 
 
Even intentional blur can be art!
 
 
Play with depth of field, and watch for natural movement and action!
 
 
Natural is always the BEST!
 
Yes, you can pose this shot:
 
 
But be alert to capture this next shot
that usually happens naturally after you take the posed shot:
 
 
Another way to create the feeling of motion in a photo,
is to have something other than your subject moving.
 
This next photo of Vintage Val was taken with a slower shutter speed.
I had her stand very still and the longer shutter captured the
movement of the car and a person walking.
 
My camera was set at f/18,  1/5 sec. shutter, ISO 100
taken with my 50mm 1.4 lens and my Canon 5D Mark III.
I was on tripod as I didn't want to shake with the slow shutter!
 
But you will need to play around with this to get
the correct settings for your location and action.
 
 
 
Here's another photo where I had the subject stay still
during a longer shutter
and something else in the photo is moving:
 
 
I simply had Mackenzie twirl the umbrella,
which is much more dynamic than this:
 
 
Moving clothing is another great way to show action!
 
 

 
Here's another fun way to create the movement:
Add motion blur to the background in Photoshop or PSE!
 
 
Watch my video tutorial to learn how to do this
very easy technique:
 
 
As you learn and practice,
I would love for you to share some of your
motion photos on my FACEBOOK PAGE.
 
Spring weather will be here SOON...so get out there with your camera
manual and start reading and PRACTICING!