Sunday, September 28, 2008

Connor Turns Two!

I remember when Connor was just a tiny squirt. I've had some fun with him as he has grown, like the time we visited his grandparent's antique bridge. Now, he's a "big boy" at two and even has a baby sister to boot!

Check out those beautiful blue eyes!

Silly boy!!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Miss SWOSU Teen Pageant: Here She Comes!

Ms. C's joining the Miss SWOSU Outstanding Teen Pageant so we whipped up a few headshots for the event. Good luck!!

Why Does Photography Cost So Much?

It's the question that everyone secretly wants to ask, but rarely does: why does professional photography cost so much? We all know that you can buy an 8x10 at the drug store for less than $5, so why do professionals charge $20 or more?

When you purchase a print, you are not just paying for the actual photograph, you are also paying for the time it took to produce the product. Just like any other consumer product on the market, photographers have to calculate expenses and overhead into our prices. To help you better understand, here's a list of a few things that I personally have to take into account when determining prices:

*TIME: A typical portrait session with young children or high school seniors lasts around two hours. Living in western Oklahoma means that I usually spend an hour or more driving to and from the photo shoot location. Then, depending on the number of images taken, editing, blogging, order preparation and delivery can easily take at least ten hours (weddings can take up to 50+ hours). So, an average portrait session usually equals about 13-15 hours of work.

*EQUIPMENT: A huge portion of my budget goes to maintaining and upgrading equipment. A professional grade SLR camera alone costs around $2,000+ and professionals always have to have a back-up camera. Lenses can be outrageous (I have one that cost $1500 alone) and most photographers need a bag of them for various photographic situations. There's also a constant need for computer and software upgrades, of course, and a while host of things that are needed to keep up with sweeping changes in technology.

*BUSINESS EXPENSES: There's postage, office supplies, insurance and banking fees and all kinds of boring-but-necessary costs that everyone has when operating a business. Plus, since I work on-location, I use a lot of gasoline. Unless you've been living in a cave, you probably realize that gas is a little insanely high these days, so no explanation needed there. :)

*EXPERTISE: While many good photographers are self-taught, they still have to been actively learning in order to continually perfect their craft. I was enrolled in an educational/mentor program before I began my business and have been involved in workshops and classes through the years. I am also a member of a professional photography organization that has yearly dues. None of these things are inexpensive and they must be taken into consideration when determining prices.

Consider this: most of us gladly pay hair stylists for a trim. Scissors only cost a couple of dollars, but most people would rather have someone who knows what they are doing cut their hair. The same applies for professional photography: you are paying for expertise. Fortunately, photo sessions aren't as frequent as hair cuts...and the results last much longer! :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I don't like to play favorites when it comes to the kiddos I photograph, but I gotta admit....this is one of my favorites. But she's my neice; it's allowed. :)

Callie, affectionately known as "Cal-Cal," is now six months old! You'd hardly recognize her from her newborn photos or her three month session.

By the way, these were all taken using natural light. I've used studio lights for babies in the past, but I'm trying to stear clear of it these days. I just love natural light and it makes the session so much less intimidating for kids when there aren't any giant, hot strobe lights towering over them in their living room!

(It's always good to end on a happy note.)

By the way, if you're still guessing the location of the state with the beautiful sunflower fields, it was Kansas where little Cal-Cal had her pictures made!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Guess the Location

Anyone know which state I visited last weekend?
Come on....take a guess.....

Thursday, September 11, 2008

For Busy Bodies

I'm busy. You're busy. We're all busy here. I don't know about you, but I live and die by the calendar. One problem I've always had was keeping up with my own personal calendar while trying to also keep up with my husband & children's comings & goings...sometimes I'd never find out what was going on until the last minute.

But recently, I found a cool online calendar called Cozi. I couldn't keep it to myself; I had to share.

This is my calendar's homepage. You can upload photos, there's a spot for journaling (great for people like me who can never seem to keep up with the family blog) and even a section for shopping lists. The best part about the shopping list is that you can have it sent via a text message to your phone! I love that since I make tons of lists...and tend to forget to bring them with me!

(You can even use the list function to save wish lists or sizes, etc. of family members. That's going to come in real handy around Christmas time!)

What's cool is that you never run out of room on a Cozi calendar (unlike my daytimer which never has enough room to fill in everyone's activities in one little square). The best part is that it color codes events/activities. On my calendar, red is an event that applies to everyone in the family, aqua are my events, el hubbo is purple, & daughters get yellow/orange dots. Hooray for organization!

I guess I should mention the best part about the Cozi's free! Sure, there are some ads on the homepage but that's okay by me.

By the way, be sure to call me and schedule an appointment to put on your calendar before fall comes and goes!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Lindy Gets Firsties! (First Senior of the Season)

And, man, what an awesome first senior session it was! You'll laugh once you see her photos, but Lindy was so worried about being in front of the camera. "I should have warned you that I'm not good at this," she said. WHATEVER!

How gorgeous is she? Skin this smooth should be outlawed! Seriously...I did ZERO photoshop touch-ups to her skin. And don't get me started on those blue blue blue eyes!

One of the perks of living in the boondocks: beautiful sunsets!

I literally said outloud, "Oh, this is a favorite" as soon as I downloaded this image. Love it!

Does she not remind you of Marilyn Monroe or some other Hollywood siren?

Hip-hip-hooray! The sunlight was beautiful that day!
(Are you jealous of my rhyming skills?)

Anyone for a baby fix? A quick shot with baby sister.
We're on cute girl overload with this one!

We were working on her CD cover (not really). This one is for a melancholy, acoustic album...

...while this one releases her inner rocker chick.

I tried something a little different with this image.
It's kinda vintage glowy glam. Or something.

And I'll leave ya with Lindy's beautiful profile.
Now, raise your hand if you think Lindy's not very good at this picture-taking thing.

{Yea, I didn't think so!!}