Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Beach Portraits

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I had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend...
memorable because I was in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
just north of Cancun for my nephew Andy's wedding
to beautiful Sabrina.

Of course, this meant BEACH PORTRAITS,
and since my own kids couldn't be with us,
I was tickled to photograph my nieces.

I even brought along a bag of my hair flowers and
Joanna's favorite color is blue.

She's so lovely!

I really like to use my 50 mm lens for portraits,
and especially like to crank it open to f1.4.

But, I was really blowing out the details
with all that beach brightness.

Here is my niece Megan.

She is majoring in fashion merchandising in college,
so she brought along some flirty skirts that caught the wind.

You KNOW I love wind!

She understood my need for MOVEMENT in portraits
and was excellent at posing.

Fortunately, most young gals love to pose...YES!!

I have the prettiest nieces.

Joanna was missing her boyfriend Alex, so I suggested
she write him a sand love note.

This is where I totally blew out the details and
thought these photos were a bust:

In my camera, the sand heart was a white blob.
Fortunately, I always shoot in RAW, so I was
able to recapture the LOVE.

My sister did not really want to wear the hair flower...

But, I'm so glad she DID!
The flowers just add a nice pop of color.

Here's my sister Sally with her husband Joe
and daughter Megan.

Her best friend from high school flew in from California
to attend Sally's son's wedding.

Colette is like my sister, too!

My only photography assignment was to photograph
the gals getting ready for the wedding.

Sabrina was a beautiful bride!

Unfortunately, my camera is BAD in low light.
I had to crank the ISO to 400 which created lots of GRAIN.

But after a bit of editing, I love the photos.
It was fun being with all the gals and feeling
the wedding excitement!

It rained on the wedding day, so the ceremony
was moved to the gazebo which was just
as beautiful.

I was so happy to see Andy and Sabrina
saying their I DOs.

Here they are the day after the fun:

As we were gathering in the lobby to leave paradise and catch
our plane home, I realized...AS USUAL...I has NO photos of
my hubby and me.

That's because nobody can ever work my camera.

I had my brother snap this quick shot by the pool,
and, of course, we are NOT in focus.

Now I'm home with a sun tan and a big pile of laundry.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Mother's Day Portraits

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Every year on my April birthday...the gift I ask from my
two children is to pose for portraits...

This year, they were both home for Mother's Day weekend.
I checked the weather the night before and it looked beautiful.
Perfect time to fulfill my birthday gift.
That's when the groaning started.

I had to remind them

Fortunately, they shaped up during the photo shoot.

As I've said many times in my kids like to
PILE on each other.

Mark is 20 and Lindsay is 22.
I love them SOOOOO much!

I like to convert a few to black and white.

They made my Mother's Day

They even agreed to climb our local sled hill so I could
test shot these photos:

They were practice for an evening shoot I had booked
to try doing sunset silhouettes.

I LOVE how these turned out and hope you'll try it too!

Jaymi shared her tips about silhouettes
here. and I wanted to try it myself.

What FUN!!

I ended up having THREE photo shoots on Mother's Day.

We went over to visit my dear Mother-in-law
and my grand niece Fiona was visiting.

I ran home to get my camera and a couple cute outfits
I picked up recently at thrift stores and photographed
this adorable baby in Mom's backyard.

Mom's neighbor saw me with the camera and offered
up her amazing backyard with flowers and
white iron furniture.

Holy HECK!  I was in portrait heaven!

Neighbor Jackie said I could come back any time to use
her backyard.

I WILL be back!

I love how when we stood Fiona in the ivy,
she thought it felt strange and kept lifting her feet....


Yep, I was a bit pooped after three photo shoots in one day,
but I was pampered with pancakes for daughter's
world famous recipe.

I tried to make them once, but they didn't taste as yummy.
"That's because I add a special secret ingredient," Lindsay said.

On Mother's Day she finally shared the secret ingredient.

"I add LOVE, Mom," she said. "Love ALWAYS makes things better!"

Hope all the moms had a wonderful Mother's Day like I did!


Saturday, May 12, 2012

Second Birthday Portrait

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Happy 2nd birthday to Genevieve...better known as Gigi!

C'mon, we all know how difficult it is to photograph toddlers.

Gigi's mom Lisa brought her to me for a
Christmas portrait back in December.

Doesn't she look adorable?  You would never
know she was stark naked!

Yep, I dressed her in this adorable Christmas tutu and she pulled
it right DOWN...  (BLUR!)

Then, to Lisa's horror, Gigi ditched her diaper, too and
bounced around my basement studio in the buff.

With toddlers, you can rarely pose them. 
I prefer them natural anyway.

So I gave her this red velvet box and she
was precious in pearls...hee hee!

Lisa threw this blanket around her trying to
hide Ms. Nakey girl.

You can never predict toddlers, so it's
best to just go with their flow and capture...

Natural expressions....yep, two-year-old NATURAL!

So, I kinda knew what to expect for her two-year-old shoot.

I always set up a posed situation first and usually
get a VERY limited window of "posing".

Soon, Gigi was off the pretty chair...
Next, the hair flower was off...

And, this was the last we saw of the tutu.

She ripped it off and Lisa was aghast when
Gigi ran around in her bloomers.

I did manage to charm her into wearing butterfly wings
and hang onto her birthday balloons.

I love when they are oblivious to the camera
and I can work on capturing their true spirit.

She quickly started acting we drove back to
my house and Lisa talked her into a wardrobe change
while I set up the little white wicker chair in my backyard.

I LOVED how the NOON sun was playing with us!

Forget the chair...she was off and running.

I just sat on the back porch and photographed
unobtrusively from afar.

Lisa was disappointed, thinking we didn't
capture ANYTHING.

But I knew I had some wonderful, natural portraits
that show Gigi at the age of two.

The toddlers are always difficult, but the
rewards are worth it!