Friday, February 20, 2015

#4- Want to know how you can prepare for a photography session?

LOCATION: The location of the photo shoot can add a whole lot of meaning and fun to your photos! The images will be focused on you, but a great background adds a ton of color, texture, lines and light! In general, I shoot in either a natural or an urban setting.
Natural spots are gorgeous open fields and treed areas. They work great for playing and focusing on each other-- great for families or children. Urban spots are cool alleys and eccentric buildings. They have great color, texture and variety. I love these with couples and senior photo shoots, but any type of session gets great results!

 KIDS: Are we photographing kids? As much as I hate to use bribery as a big one, it definitely does help when trying to get those last few shots. I also bring along a little treat with me that I use if I'm just hoping for one or two more with cooperation. The plus side to children's photography is you're really trying to capture their personality and their individual facial expressions. Most of the time the parents get the break and I try to bond and have fun with the little ones and get those natural looks. Help from parents comes by not scheduling a session during a normal nap or feeding time. Make sure they are well-rested and comfortable. Maybe bring a snack or two? And always bring an extra change of clothes in case the inevitable happens!! Need help deciding what to wear? If you can't find what you're looking for on Pinterest.. (my go to site!) than I'm happy to help you piece items together. Not sure about which scarf? Send me texts of both and I'll give you feedback.
CLOTHING: As just mentioned, I'm happy to help you select your attire. I love for families and couples to coordinate, but not be matchy-matchy! Nothing screams "Cheese balls!!" like wearing the same plaid shirts. Maybe stick to solids and layers and use a few colors together.
NOW WHAT? The fun begins! It's time for the session. I'll be in lots of communication with you through the planning process and continue as I work behind the scenes preparing your images. Post-processing can take 2-4 weeks (depending on the time of year and my schedule), but I try to make sure I get you sneak peeks within a few days, if not hours! I want to make sure you're incredibly comfortable with the process, session, images, price. Any questions are welcome and I want you to be incredibly satisfied with the result.


I don't know about all of you, but I have some MAJOR cabin fever! I want to get these kids OUT OF THE HOUSE! No more snow and sub zero temperatures! I am ready to take some photos! Have you scheduled your spring session with me yet? Spring fills up REALLY fast. March is already booked! April? I'm limited on those weekends. Email me now to get your scheduled time!

#3- What's the best way to prepare for a photo shoot?

A photo shoot of any kind is a small investment for any individual, but preparing for it could differ based on what type of session you've booked. My job as the photographer is not only to give you amazing photos to treasure for a lifetime, but also to help you readily prepare and feel good about your upcoming session. Regardless of which session you have booked, some of the general prep tips still apply. I'll try to give you a break down of the biggies! Hair: Please don't cut your hair right before the photo shoot. Not only have you not had much time to adjust to your new look, but there is a chance you may not like your cut, know how to style it or know what it will look like in photographs. Also, hair pulled back away from the face is the most flattering look. If you're over the age of 12, or not doing a spunky senior photo shoot, avoid large, dramatic hair pieces and accessories. It's smart to bring bobby pins or barettes to be able to pin your hair back on a windy day. Nails: You may not want bright polish because it will stand out in photos, but you will want well manicured hands and nails. Try to stick with a neutral color polish and make sure to paint and/or touch them up before your shoot. Skin: Moisturize!! However, if you have a breakout, don't panic. Blemishes can be buffed out (oh the wonders of Photoshop!) Keep it light on the makeup. Make sure it matches your complexion, so your face doesn't look orange compared to the rest of your body. Applying a light, natural look will accent your facial features. Clothes: If you are going to wear something that requires ironing, I suggest doing so the night before and then letting it hang to have a more natural feel. Don't wear it in the car if you can avoid it. Avoid any extreme patterns or drastic colors (Especially when in a group) because it distracts from all the pretty faces. :)

Friday, July 11, 2014

#2- Your favorite local vendors that your ideal client should check out. Why?

I have a few favorites, but they truly depend on what each client's style, personality and preference are. If you like the park setting with rustic walls and backdrops or railroad tracks and bright blue sky, than I definitely recommend looking into Fortville Memorial Park. It's cute, it's quaint and you'll rarely get photo-bombed. Some of my favorite images from this park are with Abie:
Also, there's Holiday Park that has some great backgrounds and open areas.
Or maybe you are looking for something other than a public park. Being an on-location photographer allows me to go and take pictures that have meaning to you. Maybe it's the apple tree at the spot where you are planning to build your new house.
... family reunions...
Maybe it's your own yard or road with a bit of a Pinterest-y touch?
You get the idea. The point is for each client to pick a style they'd like to see come to life in their photographs.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

#1- Why did you decide to become a photographer?

I'd love to say it was a lifelong dream of mine or that I had a tough road to go before I got where I am today, but that's not really how it happened for me. I am blessed through and through. In spring 2011, I bought my first DSLR. I wanted a camera better than the one on my iphone 3 and the disposable ones are basically a joke! I had a cute little 3 year old boy who didn't make taking an adorable photograph too tough! And while taking photos of him at soccer games, family outings or beautiful landscapes, perfecting the images with Photoshop edits and the like really drove me to continue it. I went to college for Advertising & Design and while finishing up my senior year, I took a couple extra design classes as electives. It made me realize that while print advertising was where I focused, the graphic designs were so intriguing... however, there was NO WAY I was going to switch majors!! After graduation, marriage, a child.. I thought I'd teach myself the ropes... and I needed images to be able to do that! After posting some of my pictures I'd been working on, family and friends approached me about taking photos or design work for them. My first couple photo shoots were successful, but such a learning experience! Again, I had beautiful clients who made taking a bad picture nearly impossible. A couple years ago, as my now-husband and I began to talk seriously about our future together, he encouraged me to branch out more than just favors to family and friends. He and our kids helped come up with a business name for me. If you're wondering how I came up with Blue Belle Photography- here's how. My husband and my stepchildren call me Belle. My husband is huge on nicknames and felt like calling me "Michelle" was too professional. Even though my nieces, nephew and other family members called me "Shelly", he wasn't huge on that because it was his sister's name. So, he adapted the nickname that only a handful of people had called me my whole life..."Belle"... and I've never heard his kids or family refer to me any differently. :) The "Blue" came from the color of my eyes. And the "photography" part is pretty self-explanatory, isn't it? Now here we are today and I've accumulated some really nice camera equipment, props and knowledge. I'd like to think this is just the beginning of my career as a photographer and that I have so much left to learn.

Follow me through my 21-Topic goal!

So, as you can see, I'm a bit of a slacker with this fantastic blog I've started and I've got so many things I'd love to get out and convey to my clients. I've decided to give myself a goal of posting 21 different topics about me, my business and my life in order to allow my clients (and prospective clients of course!) to get to know me better. Make sure to check back for a new post!

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Andrews Family

I had the honor of photographing a wonderful family in July (yes, I realize how far behind I am right now!!). Meet the Andrews family. Meet David & Kelly and their 2 very fun and active boys; Jasper (age 3) and Oliver (age 8 months). The Andrew found me from an ad I had posted giving away free sessions for certain categories. I had such a great time taking their photos and (although hot) we couldn't have asked for a prettier day to capture these moments at Holliday Park.