As I've been saying, I am in the process of getting my biz back to its roots. I started out as a child photographer and then branched into so many other things: weddings, newspaper and magazines, products, stock, commercial, family photography, engagements, etc. These have all been fun adventures that have honed me as a photographer in so many ways.
It has been over 40 years of this, and as I approach retirement age (which will be more about abilities than about an actual age, since I have already passed that "magic number"), my plan has been to return to my roots.
I am going to go back to making the major focus, ahem, of my work, kids. I love to shoot babies and kids. Shortly after graduating from BYU with a BFA in fine art, and with all of the necessary credits for a BA in psychology with my emphasis in child psychology (my guidance counselor advised that I just start the grad level in that field, as I would be accepted). I did graduate work in the field and also started working in the field as an early childhood specialist.
I was doing that work at the same time that I was building my child photography business and always, gratefully, marveled at how the two came together: the fine arts and childhood. I was even able to combine the two in my job when we made a documentary about mainstreaming special needs children into educational programs. My stills appear in the documentary.
Just as I always found working with special needs children in early childhood educational settings to be challenging and totally rewarding, I have also found the same for child photography. I know many photographers who refuse to do babies and kids, but I love it. I always have. I have a special love and understanding of kids. My husband says it is because I am one of them. I love to capture their fleeting images. Every second in a child's life is especially fleeting and precious.
My emphasis will be, as it always has been, on play and spontaneity, and of course, those little faces, their expressions, those chubby little hands and feet, the things that they get into, and those eyes!
As I am working on my new informational brochure and price list, I will be answering your questions and having a contest for a kick-off session!
Here are a few questions, that some of you have been asking, for starters:
Q-Can I still get a family session from you?
A- Yes, you can, but my emphasis will be on individual portraits for the most part, so I will be breaking down any family sessions into smaller sections as we go along. Also, I will only do small families as individual families, no family reunion group shots. There are those who specialize in those and I can refer you.
Q- Can I still get an engagement session?
A- Yes, I will still do couples, happily.
Q- I would like a portrait session for each of my kids and all of them together, can you do that?
A- Yes, but keep in mind that I am not going to be producing stiffly posed images, as a rule. I will be doing playful images for the most part.
Q- I want a portrait of my little girl in our garden. How would you go about that?
A-Depending on her age, I might want you to be doing stuff in your kitchen (once she is comfortable with me), or, you might be standing near me, if she needs that. I might want to begin with playing with her, whether that means she is jumping on her bed or showing me her dolls, to warm her up, and then we might go play in the garden a bit. We would plan the session in advance so that we have the details in place.
Q- What is the difference between a photojournalism session and a concept session?
A- A photojournalism session is where I come to your home, or we go somewhere together, and I photograph your child and/or your family just doing the things that you want to be doing on a day together. Let's say you all go and pick berries somewhere. I photograph that process, including the berry stained faces and hands, and then, when you go home to make berry pie, I photograph the family doing that, too, and possibly eating the pie, as well. I would use the kinds of lenses that I used when doing photojournalistic work so that the focus is the emphasis, and with many spontaneous expressions and details. A photojournalism session can range from two hours to all day.
A concept session is when we find an image in a magazine, or museum, or in our minds and wish to create something like that. We create or collect the props ahead of time, and the clothing and hair, etc. to create a theme or concept. These are fun, and the end product is often an image that agencies may even be interested in, with your permission.
Q- Would a birth session be a photojournalism or newborn session?
A-It would be a photojournalism session since I am mostly getting images of action as it is taking place, according to your wishes.
Q- How do you like to pose newborns and babies?
A-I am not that much into contrived poses for newborns and babies. I know that they can be cute and moms want some, but I have such a reverence for newborns and their sweet stage of development, that I just can't squish them into tight spaces, fold their arms into poses that they would never ordinarily do, or hang them in sacs or anything (I know that when people have done this they have taken precautions). I will post them in baskets, beds, on textured blankets and in any clothes that the parents choose, or none at all. I will turn them or naturally pose them, but mostly I like babies and kids to be photographed more naturally doing what they would naturally be doing at that stage of development.
Q- Will you still do our annual family Christmas card photo?
A- I will, but not necessarily in a traditional fashion. I have done too many stiff family portraits in order to make a living in the past. I will want to do something that is not so traditional. We can share example photos until we find a style that we both like, or I will refer you to someone who is good at doing traditional sessions.
Q- What happens after a session? How do I get my images?
A- Due to popular demand, I have pretty much switched to delivering your images via cloud technology these days. I put your images into a gallery and give you a passcode so that you can have access. You can order prints (and photo cards) directly from your gallery. I will also make it possible for you to download digital files. If you wish to order prints directly from me, or a DVD, I will make those still available to those who want them. Also, photo books and such products as photo boxes, and more will be available.
Q- Do you still offer watercolors or other fine art portraits from a session photo?
A- Yes, I do, and there are two different ways to get one of those. Details will be forthcoming.
Any more questions? The new information is in process, appearing here soon!