Monday, January 26, 2009

neille & co.

So, about a month ago, Neille contacted me about maternity photos, newborn photos and a possible Brit. Right away, I knew she was a planner. Now, the hitch was the maternity session had to be Top Secret, as she was going to surprise her husband with a picture from the session after the baby's birth. The other hitch: she really, really wanted to take a picture like the one given to Diane Keaton in the Family Stone. I remember seeing that movie, and I remember being blown away by the picture. So, in addition to being a planner, I knew Neille and I would get along swimmingly. And I was right. When she arrived at the studio, we got to work right away. Since the majority of the pictures were actually artistic nudes, I won't show them to you, dear reader. But here are two that I can. And let me also say how hard it was to find a copy of the picture from the movie. Anywhere! But leave it to Ms. Planner to save the day. The night before our session, Neille emailed me with a picture she had taken with her phone. She had gone out and rented the movie, just to get a shot of the shot. She is absolutley beautiful, inside and out, and I could not be happier for this amazing woman. The little daughter or son she is holding in her belly already holds a special place in my heart, and I can't wait to meet him or her (and Daddy, even though he apparently hates taking pictures!). Neille, thank you so much for coming out to see me and for being so easygoing. It was an absolute pleasure, and best of luck to you in these last few weeks!

lisa & co.

Ever since I put Joshua's gorgeous little face on my website so many months ago, I have always fielded questions from viewers. "Who is that little boy with the red hair and piercing blue eyes?" was always the most FAQ. I last saw Old Blue Eyes in June or July, when his mama hired me to take pictures of her extended family (lots more cuties in that bunch, too!). So it was such a treat to see him again this weekend. Just barely over two years old, Joshua can make expressions on command (curious, sad, frightened, etc.) and follows directions better than most adults! But wait . . . before this entire entry focuses entirely on little J, I should mention that his mom and dad tagged along, too. For a maternity shoot! That's right, the parents of one of the sweetest tots around are about to become parents to another little one! With willpower greater than mine, Lisa and Todd are not finding out if Joshua will have a baby brother or sister, but I'm pretty confident we can assume the baby will be easy on the eyes, with the easiest little disposition, just like his or her big brother. Such a sweet, sweet family, and I couldn't be happier for them during this special, special time. Lisa and Todd, congratulations, and best of luck Thank you so much for coming out to see me, and for bringing your precious little boy!

Friday, January 23, 2009

holy cow

About two years ago, I heard about a school for photographers called the Texas School. In all of my courses, both my instructors and classmates highly recommended this week long learning event. I was so intrigued and really wanted to attend, but the school is usually held in South Texas. Well this year, due to renovations, the program is coming to Dallas! People from all over the country flock to this "school", and instructors from all over the world attend to educate us photogs. After much thought, I decided to bite the bullet and enroll on January 3rd. Within the first minute, 600 people had applied. I just found out today that I am officially a student, and I was placed in the class I wanted. I am attaching a bio that the school wrote about my instructor. Very exciting news, which will only mean better pictures for all of you!

"Posing & Lighting with Dave Newman"
This popular seminar now comes again to us, at TSPP, for one full week and is simply one of those “MUST DO” programs. Important segments will include camera room posing and lighting and outdoor portraiture with loads of business savvy thrown in. A wide variety of other topics include: understanding facial structure (Physiognomy), lighting ratios, locating and applying suitable props, and better studio business strategies. Learn the techniques of masterful classic and traditional portraiture from the essentials of posing and lighting to studio operation savvy with an eye on substantial profits from your studio.
Dave’s success story is evidenced by his outstanding award-winning portraiture stressing simplicity and ease of execution. This is a fast moving week and covers many important common-sense matters relating to professional portraiture and studio survival.
Widely known for his “camera room” layout and design books and informative articles, Master portrait artist Dave Newman has also been designated as “Photographer of the Year” at four different annual conventions. He has taught seminars in England, Australia, China, Ireland, Scotland, Canada, Mexico and Korea, in addition to the frequent schools and conventions in the USA. Few have traveled and lectured more widely. But Dave is most noted for his witty classroom approach and the admirable combination of teacher, artist and successful businessman.
He holds England’s highest degree (Fellow) in the British Master-Photographer-Association, and the same in the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers (UK).
This is an info packed course ... bring your notebook and expect to LEARN.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

jeff & co.

This morning, two distinguished gentlemen in suits knocked on my door. And I'll freely admit it, I was nervous! Jeff and his boss, Dean, had come over and wanted me to take some professional headshots. Now, I've done headshots for actors before, but never for . . . . grown ups. You know, business people. In suits. Well, I had nothing to worry about, as it turns out. Jeff and Dean were so much fun! And while I'm used to working with kiddos, families, brides, and seniors, I have to say that my first experience with the business world was wonderfully easy. The two work for CCCI, by the way. Which, explained in its simplest form, involves IT staffing. For more information on their company, you can visit They have offices in Atlanta, Birmingham, Charlotte, Dallas, and Raleigh, so it was definitely a huge compliment that the two of them entrusted me with their "glamour shots." Thanks, guys, for a fun morning; next time I'll have the coffee brewing before you arrive!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

laura & co.

This past weekend I found myself in Houston, visiting friends and family. A one year portrait session for a sweet little fella was cancelled b/c his Mommy wasn't feeling well, but I was able to get my Photo Fix in at a birthday party for a sweet little cowboy and cowgirl. Jarrod and my husband have been best friends for over 25 years. Almost 10 years ago, Jarrod married Laura, and she and I became fast friends over manicures, ring cleaning and margaritas. Jarrod and Laura had babies around the same time my husband and I did, and this past weekend Laura and Jarrod threw a dual birthday party for Lilly and Wyatt (who celebrate birthdays in February and December, respectively). Laura had the party at her family's ranch, north of Houston. Acres and acres of rolling hills, sprinkled with cows and hay bales. Laura also had the party planned down to the t. Hay rides, nature hikes (where you could identify animal tracks, by referring to a print out she had created!), fishing, smores . . . so much fun, and I know fun was had by all. Here are a few of my favorite shots from the day. Laura and Jarrod, thank you for the wonderful afternoon; my kiddos are still talking about it! And happy birthdays to your little doggies!

Monday, January 5, 2009

joelle & co.

Ok, not to sound too creepy or stalkerish or whatever. But, when I was a single girl living in a small apartment in HP, I used to drive around the residential streets admiring all the gorgeous, gorgeous homes that made up the renowned neighborhood. I couldn't admire too long, however, because my emotions soon gave way to depression, as I realized they were not my homes. Nor would they ever be. But I always did wonder what the homes looked like on the inside, and what the families who lived in them were like. So, yesterday, when I rolled up to Cecy and Jon's beautiful home in the renowned neighborhood, my questions were finally answered. The home was, obviously, exceptionally lovely. As was the family who occupied it. Many of you may recognize Joelle and Rob from previous posts. Well, every year, Joelle and her side of the family gather at Cecy's home for a lovely family tradition, which always ends in the annual family photo. Usually Cecy (well versed in the art of photography) will stick her camera on a tripod and run to get in the picture at the last second. This year, however, they decided to hire some outside help: moi. I'm a big fan of Joelle and Rob's little family, and now I can say I'm one of Joelle's bigger family. Charley, Magdalena, Natalia and Daniel came in all the way from Denver (and 10 years prior, Magdalena came all the way in from Poland; her accent is to die for). Cecy, Jon, Jack and Lucy Goosey were perfect hosts (and, man, can Jack build some impressive lego sculptures!). Rob and Joelle were as fun as ever, and Bob and Franci played the doting grandparents so well (and Franci the doting daughter). And patriarch Joe was all smiles for the camera, all the time. Such a fun, fun family, and for so many people, we finished in record time (they are seasoned veterans, of course). Thanks so much for braving the cold, guys! Joelle and Rob, thanks for putting this all together. Jon and Cecy, thank you for letting your gorgeous home be the backdrop for this session. Charley and Magdalena, safe travels today! And thanks to everyone for their hospitality, patience and humor! Hannumas 2010!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

hold the phone

New year, new news, and lots of exciting things are happening with Haute Shot Photography!

First and foremost, I now can offer my clients a natural light studio, to be used when the weather is too cold or too hot, for maternity or newborn sessions, or just for those families who prefer the studio look. The lighting in the studio is phenomenal at almost all hours of the day; lots of bright, beautiful, natural light. The last few sessions on my blog were held in the studio (and turned out beautifully), but I'm also sharing a few taken today (with a very sweet and cooperative three year old, who just happened to be helping Mommy clean the "tudio"). The walls in the studio are a soothing, light blue-gray (which flatter any skin tone), and the floors are a rich pecan. Of course, we can also throw up a backdrop to instantly change the look of the room; the possibilities are endless. My preference is still outdoor photography, but we now have the option of either one.

Secondly, I recently found out that I should be charging my clients sales tax. That's right. Sales tax. Apparently, Uncle Sammy considers the cds that come with the session as "goods", and I am required to charge sales tax on said goods. If I didn't offer the cd, then this would be a non-issue. But, if I didn't offer the cd, it's safe to say I wouldn't have much business. So, from here on out, I'll have to add sales tax to each session.

Thirdly, there will be a very small increase in my pricing structure. In-studio sessions will remain at $150 (plus tax). All other sessions (on-location) will now be $200 (plus tax). You will still get an outrageous number of pictures from our fabulous sessions, a password protected gallery on my website to share with family and friends, and a cd of high resolution images to be printed where ever you choose.

This year I will be taking more courses in photography in an effort to better my craft and offer you only the finest portraits of your lovely selves. As of today, I will be shooting two weddings in the upcoming months. And I will strive to continue to make our sessions memorable, fun and something you'll look back on and smile. I am investing lots into this little business, in order to give you the very best, and I know you will be pleased with the results. Also, be sure to watch for exciting specials and promotions, on this very blog, over the next few months.

I know the cold, dreary weather makes warm weather seem so far away, but Spring dates are starting to fill up on the calendar. So for those of you wanting Easter, spring, etc. portraits, be sure to secure a date now.

Finally, I simply can not begin to express my gratitude for the investment you have made in me. I truly am grateful for each and everyone one of you, and I look forward to all the fun to be had in 2009.