I love pretty pictures. Any pictures. As long as the composition is artful, the lighting is beautiful and the focus is sharp I'm happy. I love mountains and streams, houses and food, but especially portraits.
When Tessa was a baby we joined the JC Penny portrait club and took FULL advantage of it. I think I had her picture taken about every 4 weeks for the first 2 years of her life.
During that time I met and became close friends with one of the photographers, Tonya. When Tessa was 3ish Tonya quit Penny's and started her own business, Photography Impressions. She took our pictures for trade. I helped her out with marketing materials, website design and photo editing. Sometimes I would give her a gift certificate or $20 for a sitting fee...I definitely came out ahead on the deal.
On top of the pictures she also gave me mini lessons - explaining a bit about lighting, cropping, editing, etc. Some time ago Tonya moved to Idaho. We are still friends, though neither of us is especially good at long-distance communication.
Anyway, I miss her and her photography expertise.
She's spoiled me. JC Penny doesn't do it anymore. Kiddie Kandids doesn't even do it. I crave beautiful, natural light, candid photos in outdoor locations.
So I have no choice but to take my own.
My technique is lacking.
I'm good enough at the creative aspect - finding the location, posing the subject - but I have very little technical knowledge. Luckily I have a nice camera, and I'm smart enough to know that if you're not sure of quality, you shoot for quantity.
So I take a million pictures, and hope to find 2 or 3 that are decent enough to blow up and frame.
On Saturday morning I took Tessa out for her 7 year pictures.
Her friend, Isabella, had spent the night before with us. She offered some distraction for Tessa and I (my photo sessions are known for getting a bit 'intense') so I took her with us and photographed her as well.
Here are the best of Tessa.
Tessa is difficult to take a picture of because she won't look at the camera. She turns her hear in your direction, but her eyes are everywhere else. It takes a lot to get her to look at me. On top of that she has a terrible camera smile, so I'm constantly trying to say funny things. She knows I'm trying to get her to smile or laugh, so she tries to comply...and ends up over compensating with face splitting grins and fake giggles.
Luckily, she's gorgeous. Prettier than any little girl I've ever seen anywhere. Prettier than she has a right to be. So that helps things.
We're getting better - photo sessions used to be very stressful, but they are improving. This one was actually fairly enjoyable.
Overall I'm happy with how they came out. My favorite are at the top, least favorite at the bottom. You can see bigger versions on photobucket.
If you're interested in seeing the ones I took of Isabella you can see them here. They actually turned out better than Tessa's, because Bella actually looks at me and smiles.
Also, probably because I'm not so picky about her - since she's not my kid!