One more sleep and Zoe and I are off on our whirlwind adventure in Europe! Please feel free to continue to contact me as I do hope to find the occasional free wifi signal and will be checking in here and there.
Today we had a lovely visit with friends who are in town from Copenhagen. I couldn’t resist pulling out my camera to grab a few of the kiddies who have grown SO much! I photographed this little girl as a brand newborn baby and here she is, getting so big already! Thanks so much for coming over today, Louise and keeping my horrible doggies in line! xoxo
Prior to any session I always conduct a pre-shoot consult. This includes lots of questions about my subjects, particularly when there are children involved. Are they shy? Outgoing? Quick to warm up to a new person or anxious around strangers? I take careful notes and ensure that I’m well versed in whatever my subject is interested in. In this case, the little man of the house had been watching Aristocrats lately. So, I watched Aristocrats the night before (no complaints from my kiddos there) and made sure I could have an intelligent conversation about Duchess and Edgar et al. During the pre-shoot consult I also coach the parents about what to expect and how I need them to be during the session. I encourage the parents to ‘just go with it’ on the day of the shoot. Kids throwing a fit – s’ok with me! Kids being entirely uncooperative? It’ll pass. Kids sticking out their tongues every time I lift the lens? Great personality shots! I love it all and anything goes. The last thing I want a parent to do is to admonish their children during our session because, above all, I want the kids to have fun. Fun is the name of the game and fun ensures that we absolutely will get those magical smiles and genuine character-filled expressions. You may not see them, but I will capture them.
Another tip I give parents is about ‘The Warm Up’. The Warm Up is the first fifty or so frames that are essentially throw aways. Everyone’s stiff and uncomfortable. Lots of ‘CHEESE’ smiles and awkward poses. Everyone is trying their absolute best pose with their most practiced smile and it’s, well, kinda horrible! My rule is that the first shots are the worst and the last shots are the best.
Then I met this family. Last week we met at home in the early morning. The light was great and there was a lovely park just across the way. When I arrived the kiddies were having cereal and the day was just getting started. The sun was in the perfect spot and the sky was blue so we hurried outside to get started. As they stepped out the front door I stopped them at the bottom of the front steps and snapped a few shots. ‘The Warm Up’ shots. Low and behold, I got this. And I love it! This is literally frame number one of the family.
Now, just to compare, after the wonderful park just across from the house, including some very fun teeter totter shots, we made our way back to the house. The wonderful white bedding was just perfect so we grabbed a handful of frames in Mom & Dad’s bed. Here is the last frame of the family together. I’ll let you be the judge…which is better? First frame or last? I can’t decide.
Our family just did a short trip to Nova Scotia to celebrate the end of the year and to breathe the fresh, clean ocean air. It truly revives our spirits to be out there. Sometimes, beloved clients need me while I’m away and in the past I’ve had to refer them to other wonderful photographers that I know. For the first time I didn’t do this! I asked my assistant, Yael, to step in and help out. And help out she did! Here’s a shot from little Hudson’s first birthday that I just LOVE! Thank you, Yael!