Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Oh happy day: Brett + Whitney {Redlands Wedding Photographer}

When I read the news that Whitney was getting married (thank you facebook) I gasped. I just couldn't believe it! And when I got the call asking if I would photograph her special day I gasped again, composed myself long enough to finish the phone call and then hung up the phone and sat there for a moment. 

You see Whitney just couldn't be getting married. Her and her family are very spcial to me and in my mind she was still the young girl I used to teach at Church. She just wasn't allowed  to grow up and get married. And who was this boy that was to be her Eternal companion?

I had so many questions to ask her, but when I saw her face I had none. She was happy! And in turn, so was I! And I was even more happy that I got to be the one to capture this happy day!!  

Whitney and Brett thank you for letting me share in your happy day! Much love to you both.

And a special thank you to Ashley of  Ashley Lyons Floral Artistry for the beautiful flowers. It's always great to work with you!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I was a spotlighted {Inland Empire Photographer}

While I was out of town with my family over 4th of July I got a text from a good friend congratulating me on my feature. Yea, I had NO idea what she was talking about!! I quickly called for my hubby so we could use his spiffy phone to pull up the article.

You see, I had done the interview for this feature a while back and didn't even know if it would ever be used. Thank goodness one friend saw it and spread the word to my informative friend.

The article was used on our Church site and is a fun and easy little read. You may even see some familiar photos.

You can read the full article HERE. I do have to admit though that a quote was used that was NOT mine. This is under the " How has photography influenced your spiritual understanding?" Sorry guys, I'm not that good! haha!!! 

Enjoy...and always thanks for all the support and love you all give me. It's much appreciated!! 

Michelle Peterson, Southern California

How long have you been a photographer?

I am just starting into my third year.

What got you interested in photography?

Well, I started just wanting to get good pictures of my own children, and it just grew from there.

What is your photography specialty?

Children and families—it just kind of happened that way.

How did you get interested in submitting your photos to the Church?

My mother and sister-in-law found an article in a Church publication and told me to go for it.

How do you feel you can use photography to build up the kingdom or share the gospel?

In my profession I get to shoot photos of a lot of people who aren't members of the Church, and I try to be an example for them.

What about photography inspires you?

I love seeing families and children interacting. I love when a photographer captures a smile or a moment that can later bring tears to your eyes and make the moment last forever.

What part of photography is the most rewarding?

Seeing people's reactions when they view their galleries or when I deliver their photos.

How has photography influenced your spiritual understanding?

Years ago, I had the opportunity to have dinner with a freelance photographer for National Geographic. One tip he shared was perspective, and to look to the light. Looking for the light has been my inspiration. The way light rests upon any subject can turn an average photo into a masterpiece. Without light, there would be nothing to photograph. As light rests upon the subject, the subject radiates to its full potential. We also radiate as individuals when we allow the giver of all light, our Savior, to rest upon us. We then rise to our full potential and become a masterpiece in His hands.

If you could take photos of anything, what would it be?

My family and loved ones. I want to document life's moments for those I love the most in this world.

Where is your “dream location” to shoot?

Paris, France. I love the character and the charm of the “city of lights.” And my hubby served his mission in France, so that helps too.

Where is your favorite location to shoot?

Family walking

Outdoors with that yummy natural lighting.

How would you describe your photography?

Fun, colorful, candid, and natural.

What tip or trick have you learned along the way that made the biggest difference in the quality of your photos?

Don't push for a perfect shot. Capture life as it is. Just let your clients be themselves, and the moments will happen.

What advice would you give to new photographers?

Take the time to really learn “your” style, and don't be afraid to just be yourself. You will always have critics, but just block out all the negativity. If you like your photos and your clients like them, then that is all that matters.

How much do you edit your photos?

As little as possible. Every picture is different, but you don't want to lose the realness of the image.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

tea for two: part 2 {Redlands Children Photographer}

I was finishing up my editing from this fun session so I could get them mailed out and I just can't help sharing a few more of my favorites. I had so many!!

These next two capture my girl perfectly! I see these looks ALL the time.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

one adorable couple...

coming up next!!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Josh & Chelsea: happy 1 year!! {Redlands Wedding Photogrpaher}

This weekend this awesome couple will be celebrating their 1 year wedding anniversary.

So glad I was part of their special day!

Happy anniversary you two and here's to many, many more.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

they grow too fast {Oak Hills Photographer}

I have to admit that lately I have had a bit of the "baby bug." Not like the I'm really gonna have a baby kind, but more like the missing of my own being so little kind of bug.

I blame this on my little man starting 1st grade last week and a 3 yr old little princess who wants to do everything herself.

Oh, and all the cute little ones I get to spend time with on Sundays and at work. :) 

Take this little doll for example. I have had the privilege of photographing her a few times now as you can see here and here. I feel so much a part of her (and her families) life because of it. I get to watch her grow and document it forever. What a joy!!!

These are the moments for sure that make me LOVE my job!!!

Miss Samantha thanks for spending some time with me and for such fun. You are growing too fast, but how fun it is to watch you!!


And a BIG thank you to your family for all the help. ;)   I always enjoy our time together!!!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Why are Professional Photographers so Expensive??

This is a question that I know a lot of you think about and honestly it's one that I do too, but probably for different reasons.

This is a subject that I addressed a while ago and have been wanting to revisit for a while. And now is as great a time as any as we head into the Holiday season when everyone is thinking about their Christmas photos. ;) 

I often get asked this question and think to myself "really, it's not that expensive." Sure the initial cost may look like a shock to some, but do you really get out of the chain stores paying the low price that they got you in the door with in the first place? NO! Most of the time you don't and you end up buying lots of the same posed image that you always have left overs of. Don't get me wrong, these studios have their place, but these days there are so many other options available. Explore them!!!

 Over the next few weeks I hope to put a little more info out there to educate you on the world of Custom Photography and give you a small glimpse into my world.

 I hope that you stick with this article and read all the way through...it's a great one!

"In this digital age where everyone has cameras, scanners, and home "photo printers," we hear this all the time: How do professional (or personal) photographers charge $X for an 8x10 when they cost just $1.50 at the drugstore? Simply put, the customer is not just paying for the actual photograph; they're paying for time and expertise.

The average one-hour portrait session

First, let's look at the actual work involved:
  • Travel to the session
  • Setup, preparation, talking to the client, etc.
  • Shoot the photos
  • Travel from the session
  • Load images onto a computer
  • Back up the files on an external drive
  • 2 - 4 hours of Adobe® Photoshop® time, including cropping, contrast, color, sharpening, and backing up edited photographs. Proof photos are also ordered.
  • 2 - 3 hours to talk to the client, answer questions, receive order and payment, order their prints, receive and verify prints, package prints, schedule shipment, and ship.
  • Possibly meet clients at the studio to review photos and place order. Meeting and travel time average 2 hours.
You can see how a one-hour session easily turns into an eight-hour day or more from start to finish. So when you see a personal photographer charging a $200 session fee for a one-hour photo shoot, the client is NOT paying them $200 per hour.

The eight-hour wedding

A wedding photographer typically meets with the bride and groom several times before and after the wedding. And it’s not uncommon to end up with 1,000 - 2,000 photos, much more than a portrait session. Many photographers spend 40-60 hours working on one eight-hour wedding if you look at the time that is truly involved. Again, when a wedding photographer charges $4,000 for eight hours of coverage, clients are NOT paying them $500 an hour!
(Don’t forget that the photographer runs the wedding day to some extent. A comfortable, confident wedding photographer can make a wedding day go more smoothly.)

The expertise and cost of doing business

Shooting professional photography is a skill acquired through years of experience. Even though a DSLR now costs under $1,000, taking professional portraits involves much more than a nice camera.
Most personal photographers take years to go from buying their first camera to making money with photography. In addition to learning how to use the camera, there is a mountain of other equipment and software programs used to edit and print photographs, run a website, etc. And don’t forget backdrops, props, rent, utilities, insurance, etc!
In addition to the financial investment, photographers actually have to have people skills to make subjects comfortable in front of the camera. Posing people to look their best is a skill by itself. You could argue that posing is a more important skill than actually knowing how to use the camera. A poorly exposed photo can be saved, but a badly posed photo cannot.

The chain store photo studio

Chain stores do have their place. For a very cheap price you can run in, shoot some quick photos, and be done with it. But you get what you pay for.
Consider the time and effort that a personal photographer puts into photographs, compared to a chain store. Store sessions last just a few minutes, while a personal photographer takes the time to get to know the people, makes them comfortable, makes them laugh. If a baby is crying at a chain store, they often don’t have the time (or the patience) to wait because everyone is in a hurry.
The truth is that many chain store studios lose money. In fact, Wal-Mart closed 500 of their portrait studios in 2007 because of the financial drain. What the chain stores bank on is a client coming in for quick, cheap photos…and while there, spending $200 on other items. They are there to get you in the door.
The real deal

Professional, personal photographers are just that—professionals. No different than a mechanic, dentist, doctor, or electrician. But a personal photographer often becomes a friend, someone who documents a family for generations with professional, personal photographs of cherished memories.
Maybe we need to help clients look at it this way: A pair of scissors costs $1.50 at the drugstore. Still, most people will gladly pay a lot more to hire a professional hair dresser to cut their hair.

The added attention and quality that a personal photographer gives is worth every penny."

 A big thank you to Caught on Film Photography for allowing me to share it.

Monday, August 8, 2011

back to school {mine}

Today was the day...back to school day to be exact.

My little man started 1st grade today. 

I was a bit nervous after the drama that came with the start of kindergarten, but happy to report that not a tear was shed by him or I (so far). 

I'm so excited for all that this year has to offer my guy.

Cheers to a great school year!! 

See ya later sister!!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

being 1 is SO fun {Redlands Child Photographer}

Meet Carl...my nephew. Isn't he just the cutest little guy, ok so maybe he's not so little. ;)

He was here visiting from Hawaii for a few weeks and mom asked if I could get a picture of him since he just turned one. So we had a quick photo shoot, I'm talking like 10 minutes max.

Carl I can't believe you are already one. So cute, so curious and so loved!!!


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