I cannot even begin to imagine the day. My kiddos are in Kinder and 3rd grades, so we’re still a ways off…but as everyone tells me, it will be here before I know it. Moms and dads of seniors, I feel you. Graduation is almost here, the summer will blow by, and they’ll be gone.
In her pre-shoot consultation, she told me that spending an afternoon in Barnes & Noble is part of her perfect day, and I knew we were a match. (I’m the biggest book girl you’ve ever met.) Since she’s also an accomplished flutist, I knew we had to incorporate that into her photographs too.
A senior photo shoot isn’t just about remembering what your teen looks like. It’s about showcasing the whole of who she is, what she’s into NOW, and helping you remember her personality in this moment. The albums and wall portraits will be your reminder through the years of these milestones that come and go all too quickly.
(Ready to buy now? Scroll all the way to the bottom!)
I love Thanksgiving. I love the spirit of gratitude, the moment to pause and reflect on all the blessings of this life. Relatively free from the commercial trappings and gift-giving requirements of most “holidays”, Thanksgiving remains a day of sharing a meal with those you love most, perhaps serving someone else, and taking time to practice gratitude.
In that spirit, I am so incredibly grateful for YOU – clients, future clients, and Facebook fans, from Houston, Cypress, Tomball and beyond, who have supported me with your business, your calls and emails, and your comments. Your support has resulted in healthy growth for my little business this year, which in turn is leading to some VERY exciting things for 2013 (more on that later!). So to say “thank you”, I’m offering a Grateful Gift Certificate Event, starting now! Here are the details:
- On Thursday and Friday, Nov. 22 and 23, your entire gift certificate purchase is DOUBLED (so you buy a certificate for $500, you receive a card in the amount of $1,000), up to a $500 transaction amount.
- On Saturday, Nov. 24, you receive 50% of your transaction amount as a bonus credit (up to $500 transaction amount).
- On Sunday, Nov. 25, you receive 25% of your transaction amount as a bonus credit (up to $500 transaction amount).
Think of what may be coming up soon for your family, or special portrait sessions you may want to book…
- Milestone birthdays – 1 year, 13, 16, 18, 21
- Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day
- High school or college graduation
- A child’s wedding – get that last family portrait in first!
- Spring wildflowers
- Grandparent/grandchild sessions
- Multi-generation portraits
If given as a gift, the certificate itself will delight the recipient – printed on thick, luxurious linen card stock, the certificate comes packaged in a beautiful gift box, ready to be given away!
Here are a few things to know about this lovely event (aka The Fine Print):
- Bonus credits are only applicable to Classic and Storybook sessions that take place in 2013 (no mini sessions, Watch Me Grow, or limited edition sessions). You may use up to your transaction amount for mini sessions, but bonus credits must be used on full sessions, and may not be combined with any other promotions or offers.
- No cash value.
- Sessions will be scheduled based on availability.
- Transaction amount must be at least $150 to qualify for bonus credits.
To purchase, just click the links below. Thank you once again for trusting me with your family’s memories!
OK, that title may be a little misleading. 🙂 I don’t have any actual behind-the-scenes photos to show you, but I did want to give a little glimpse into what all goes on from the time you book a session with me until you receive your finished art pieces. Someone mentioned to me the other day, “I had no idea how much post-production was involved after a session…” and it’s true, most people don’t have an understanding of exactly what all goes on to make a professional custom photography session – and the resulting portraits, albums, and other heirloom pieces – happen. So without further ado, here’s a peek into one of my custom sessions:
Pre-booking conversations and answering questions (either by email or phone), preparing Photography Agreement, preparing PayPal invoice for session fee: 1 hour
Session planning (figuring out location and pose ideas): 1 hour MINIMUM
Preparing equipment for session (clearing and formatting cards, charging batteries, cleaning lenses): 1/2 hour
Travel time to and from session: 1 hour
(Did y’all notice that this is THREE HOURS before I’ve even picked up a camera to shoot your session???)
Shooting time: 1.5 hours
Post processing: copying and backing up images (twice), importing into editing software, deciding which ones are keepers, color correcting and light retouching on the keepers: time varies widely depending on how much retouching is needed, but on average, 3-4 hours
Preparing for presentation session: preparing slide show and samples to show you, gathering all materials: 1 hour
Travel to and from presentation session: 1 hour (average)
Presentation session: 1.5 hours (average)
Preparing ordered images for printing (final retouching and cropping on all ordered images), and ordering from lab: varies depending on amount of images ordered, can be anywhere from 1-4 hours
Checking and packaging orders received from lab: 1/2 hour
Travel time to and from post office and waiting in line (for shipped orders): 1 hour
Whew! So there you have it! When you book a session with me, you receive around 15 hours of my time, from start to finish, which is one reason why custom photography is more expensive than running down to the mall. But, when all is said and done and you have beautiful imagery gracing the walls (or tables) of your home, you will be glad you made the investment to preserve this moment in time for your baby, child, high school senior, or family.
Just for fun, another editing blueprint, which I’m entering to win a set of Quick Clicks Lightroom presets over at MCP Actions. Photoshop actions are a great way to spice up photographs (and, in some cases, correct mistakes made while shooting!).
I generally try to get my images 90% of the way to how they will look finished as I am taking the shot. I want to spend the least amount of time possible in front of the computer! So I work hard to get a correct exposure, good sharp focus, and a clean composition while I am shooting. However, things don’t always go exactly according to plan and every now and then an image sneaks in that isn’t technically perfect, but is still worth saving. Like this one.
You can see the “before” image on the left is a bit underexposed (that means it’s darker than it should be). I also really wanted to highlight her beautiful blue eyes and the interesting colors in the background (which is actually a painted wall – pulling her about 15 feet away from the wall produced this beautiful, blurry background effect you see here). Here are the steps I went through to edit this photo using MCP Actions:
1. Used the Patch tool to clean up some small bumps on her face
2. Used Magic Midtone Lifter from the Bag of Tricks set and increased the opacity to 63%
3. Used Dream Color from the Quickie Collection and turned off the Over Exposure Fixer layer – this added some beautiful contrast, enhanced the colors and gave the image a subtle glow
4. Used Magic Light from Bag of Tricks on her face (with a 21% brush) to brighten her face just a bit more and then flattened the image
5. Used the Eye Doctor set (I purchased the Eye Doctor/Dentist bundle) to enhance her eyes: Brighten Catchlights layer with a 54% brush, just on the bright spots in her eyes, Brighten the Iris layer with a 36% brush, and Sharp as a Tack with a 50% brush, then flattened
6. Ran Powder Your Nose from the Magic Skin action set and painted on her face with a 100% brush, then reduced the opacity of the layer to 36%
7. Ran the Magical Color Finder action from Bag of Tricks and painted only on the background using a 100% brush, then lowered the opacity of the layer to 46% then flattened
8. Ran the Dentist action set and used the Whiten layer with a 100% brush and the Polish Your Teeth layer with a 100% brush. I lowered the opacity of the Polish layer to 9%
9. Ran the Sharp People action from the Quickie Collection and left at the default opacity
And since my before/after template cut off some of that beautiful background, here is the whole image. Isn’t she gorgeous? 🙂
ahhhh, the joys of senior year.
I’ve known this sweetie all her life, so it was a pleasure to photograph her senior session. Best of luck to you my dear!