Sunday, February 26, 2012

Project 52 - Glimpses week 8

Missed last week due to illness running through everyone in the family. So since the glimpse of last week wouldn't have been too pretty I opted to skip the week... But here is my little girl from today at a birthday party. She is getting too big! Join the fun!

also submitted for IHF Black & White Challenge
Photo Challenge Submission

"What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 6 of 6 - Newborns & Babies

In concession with the previous "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" posts, if you missed them start with Part 1 the other posts are linked at the bottom in the first post and they have a lot of good tips to inspire you to look your best for your shoot.

This prep list is in regards to Newborn & Baby sessions and what you should do to help your baby be happy and rested when your session arrives.




Newborns and Babies
  • Use a wash cloth to clean away flaky skin and eye boogers.

  • If your baby has flaky skin, cradle cap, or eczema, use baby oil daily for a week or so before the shoot. Don't worry if baby acne has begun to show, photoshop can fix those little spots.

  • Trim those tiny fingernails and toenails with appropriate baby trimmers so they don't look awkward in shape and more importantly so they don't scratch themselves before hand.

  • Book your shoot around your baby’s feeding and nap times, work with the natural rhythm of your baby. The perfect time to shoot is right when the baby would be laying down for a nap. If your baby normally falls asleep after a feeding, wait to feed the baby until shoot time. I allot plenty of time for this sort of thing to set up the best situation for great photos newborn sleepy photos.

  • Dress up disposable diapers. Cloth diapers are classy and stylish, but if you don’t use them, bring bloomers or decorative diaper covers, solids preferred.

  • What's the best wardrobe choice for a newborn? Nothing! – usually no outfit fits a newborn well, and they often look swallowed in clothes. Accessories are good, though – little hats, dainty headbands, boys in crocheted hats, etc. Bring sentimental items like the quilt that Grandma made for the baby, a baby blanket from your own childhood – they’re great for to lay on and be a backdrop in the photo.

  • If your baby takes a pacifier, bring it – if they’re bottle fed, bring an extra bottle to help put the baby to sleep.

  • I don't use backdrop set ups so your home will be my "backdrop" I may ask to rearrange your furniture to access the best possible light in your home. So don't be alarmed if I want to move your couch a little that way and bring a chair a little this way, it's apart of the process.
Email me at amanda@alarmsphotography.com if you have further questions about your session!

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    Saturday, February 25, 2012

    "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 5 of 6 - Maternity

    In concession with the previous "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" posts, if you missed them start with Part 1 the other posts are linked at the bottom in the first post and they have a lot of good tips to inspire you to look your best for your shoot.

    This prep list is in regards to Maternity sessions and what you should do to look your best when your session arrives.

    Maternity

    • Pregnant woman should do their maternity session during the last trimester for a perfect round belly shoot! There are a lot of suggestions as to "WHEN" during the 3rd trimester you should schedule your shoot but being that I have been there twice I would say some where between 34 to 37 weeks while you still have a little room, still comfortable and not quite as swollen as week 39 and 40. 37 weeks is considered full term so if you wait until after then you are taking a chance that you won't be able to "make it" to the shoot (trust me on this one, been there, done that and have no professional pregnant belly pics of me and my first born)The last few weeks are very uncomfortable for a lot of moms so you should get your photos before you get to that stage.

    • Moisturize that belly if you plan to do bare belly shots however keep in mind I will not ask you to raise your shirt or show your belly so if this is something you wish to do, please let me know. Being comfortable is my main concern with pregnant clients, I have two children I know what it is like!

    • Gather your props to bring along – ultrasound printout, alphabet blocks that spell your baby’s name, baby shoes, stuffed animals, flowers, whatever you’ve seen in other maternity photos that you like.

    • Wear whatever you feel comfortable and pretty in – long, flowy skirts, especially solids are nice, and strapless bras that coordinate with them. Tube dresses are great for showing off your shape. Bring a pair of regular jeans, not the belly panel ones if you plan to show your belly, because those can leave marks on your skin that we don't want in the photo. A button-up shirt also makes it easy to transition into showing your belly but stay true to your style, if you don't have one, ask "daddy" to borrow his!

    • Do bring your significant other! They’ll make a great prop for your photos, and greatly expand on the number of different photos you can make during your shoot. They should bring outfits that coordinate with what you’ll be wearing. The focus should always be on you, your expressions, your emotions, your personality, your joy and your connection.
     Email me if you have any other questions not addressed here amanda@alarmsphotography.com
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    Friday, February 24, 2012

    "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 4 of 6 - Children

    In concession with the previous "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" posts, if you missed them start with Part 1 the other posts are linked in the first post and they have a lot of good tips to inspire you to look your best for your shoot.


    This prep list is in regards to Children sessions and what you should do to look your best when your session arrives.


    Children
    • Clean, clean, clean – clean nails, clean hair, wipe away eye boogers, clean feet (sandals on kids = black feet!), wipe snotty noses, fresh-scrub teeth. The cleaner the kid, the better their photos will turn out. Bring wet wipes because as a mother, I know that a child (at any age) can always be wiped down! 

    • If your child is still in diapers or pull-ups, tuck’em in or wear bloomers or diaper covers under dresses and skirts.

    • If your child is still of napping age, make sure they nap before the shoot. I always advise to make sure you schedule your session AROUND nap time, this is very important and some first time mommas may not think of this so schedule your session early in the morning before nap time or late in the afternoon or evening after nap time.

    • It is perfectly okay to bring bribes to a photo shoot – given a stage and being the center of attention, it’s like our kids know exactly when to act their worst. Some cereal, smarties or other candy that won’t stain teeth can help a short photo shoot go by smoothly.

    • Parents don't freak out if your children are not cooperating, I am very patient and if need be will take your child on a walk... just me and them so we can get away from all the "pressure".

    • For smaller children bring a favorite toy or something that usually gets them smiling or laughing. Squeaky toys are great for toddlers.

    • Avoid colorful drinks or lollypops within 24 hours of your shoot, don’t let them eat or drink anything that will stain their face, teeth or mouths.

    • Wardrobe – For girls, you can’t go wrong with cute dresses, rompers, and dainty hats or headbands. For boys, jeans and polos or a button-up shirt, or a T-shirt with a button-up over it can be very cute, as well as overalls on the right age and personality. For siblings, the children don’t have to match perfectly, just coordinate. You can’t go wrong with dark, rich monotones, which drive the attention in photos to sweet faces and darling expressions instead of loud prints or colors. If nothing else, pick a color that compliments your child’s eye color.

    If you have further questions about what you should wear for your session whether your man or woman feel free to visit my pinterest board dedicated to Inspire YOUR style there are several styling suggestions for men, women, and children of all ages. Email me if you have any other questions not addressed here amanda@alarmsphotography.com


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      Thursday, February 23, 2012

      NEW Product: iPhone 4 / iPhone 4s Photo Cases


      I'd like to introduce a new product that is available at ALArms Photography

      iPhone 4 Photo Cases
      $35.00

      As an introductory offer clients can order these cases at the discounted rate of 20% off until the end of February! So HURRY offer won't be around long!



      Email if you are interested in getting some of your favorite images on the iPhone 4 photo case. 

      Personalize your iPhone 4/4S with a custom iPhone Case. Your favorite image is displayed with a vibrant high gloss finish.

      Features

      • Available in black, white or clear.
      • The image is printed on a high gloss vibrant metal insert.
      • Fits the iPhone 4 and 4S only.
      Please note: Due to the nature of this product, minor surface imperfections such as bubbles or bumps may appear. We will make every effort to place the image so that imperfections are as inconspicuous as possible. Remakes are not available due to imperfections in the product.


      Here is an example of an actual template for the iphone case -
      the red line would not appear on the final product,
      it's only there to make sure all the important stuff is visible in the final product.

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      DON'T FORGET
      "LIKE"
      If you are not a facebook fan - now is the time to "LIKE"

      ALArms Photography will be celebrating it's 1st Annual Birthday
      in the month of April!
      I intend to celebrate ALL month long with exclusive offers, special savings and discounted product.

      Make sure you keep your eyes peeled for what's in store.

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      Wednesday, February 22, 2012

      "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 3 of 6 - Seniors

      In concession with the previous "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" posts, if you missed them see them here - Part 1  & Part 2 they have a lot of good tips to inspire you to look your best for your shoot.
      This prep list is in regards to Senior sessions and what you should do to look your best when your session arrives. 


      2013 Seniors: Don't forget to check out the senior rep program.



      High school seniors
      • The biggest tips for seniors are to have an even (shade of brown) tan, DO NOT tan a few days before the session and don’t get sunburned, you will be red. Do not use spray tan or some other form of tan in a bottle the day of your shoot, you will be orange. This goes for any big event you have coming up this year, especially PROM! Please prepare well and tan well in advance to any event you have and don't over do it!

      • Clean those nails! Moisturize and scrub away dry skin EVERYWHERE but especially on hands and face! Guys - please scrub your nails clean before your shoot, trim your nails and make sure your hands look decent, show them to mom or your girlfriend for approval. Girls - put a freshly-painted coat on your nails so your senior ring will photograph well. Oh and DON'T FORGET YOUR RING!

      • Girls don't over do the make up - every little detail will show in close up photos and I do love a close up! Bring some powder for touch ups. GUYS- Please bring mom or a girlfriend with some translucent powder, if it is warm out and you begin to sweat you will get oily or shiny looking and that is NOT a good look, it shows up very well on camera. PLEASE BRING POWDER! Do not try to cover blemishes with make up, unless you know what your doing, it will show up in the photos and it will be easier to deal with in photoshop than dealing with make-up issues after the fact.

      • Bring a variety of outfits – cap and gown, something casual, something stylish, ladies slip a dress in there fancy or casual to throw folks off, fellas try a formal look to impress. If you have already had prom and you want to do a "Trash the dress" session that would be cool too. Wear what you think you look best in, but take the opportunity to also try a new look, just to surprise folks and maybe even yourself. Check out my Pinterest board for some inspiration.

      • Bring props that recall your high school years – band instrument, sports gear like a volleyball or baseball bat, your beloved (or cursed) high school car, letter jacket, sunglasses. Most of all, rep your style, whatever that may be. Your senior photo should be unique to your life and personality.


      If you have further questions about what you should wear for your session whether your man or woman feel free to visit my pinterest board dedicated to Inspire YOUR style there are several styling suggestions for men, women, and children of all ages. Email me if you have any other questions not addressed here amanda@alarmsphotography.com


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      Tuesday, February 21, 2012

      "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 2 of 6 - Families

      In concession with the previous "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" post, if you missed it - See it here it has a lot of good advise to inspire you to look your best for your shoot.

      This prep list is in regards to Family sessions and what you should do to look your best when your session arrives.

      Families
      • Dad – Have a fresh shave or trim, and use a new razor with shaving cream and a moisturizing after-shave lotion to limit bumps and redness. Make sure nails are clean and trimmed. Wash your hands. Clean up your shoes. Moisturize and scrub away flaky facial skin (see above General advice). When you wash your face, pay attention to eye boogers and sleep crusties. For wardrobe, go for jeans or pants, tucked polo or dress shirt with a belt, or go casual with just a T-shirt or untucked polo, button-up short sleeve, etc. In general, whatever your wife tells you to wear. Again you don’t have to perfectly match the rest of the family, just wear something that coordinates.

      • Mom – Women know what to wear, but in general, unless you are extremely thin you may want to wear something that covers your upper-arms. Long- or 3/4-sleeve tops are very flattering. If you wear jewelry, aim for subtlety, and be aware of it twisting or turning. Make sure your make-up is in good taste and there are no streaky or weird looking uneven lines.

      • Kids – Same advice as above, but again, everything needn’t match, simply coordinate with the parents’ outfits. If Dad’s in a T-shirt, don’t put the kids in dress shirts – make it make sense. You are welcome to bring those dresses if you would like to make an outfit change during the session for some individual portraits of just the children.

      If you have further questions about what you should wear for your session whether your man or woman feel free to visit my pinterest board dedicated to Inspire YOUR style there are several styling suggestions for men, women, and children of all ages. Email me if you have any other questions not addressed here amanda@alarmsphotography.com


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      Thursday, February 16, 2012

      "What should I do to prepare for my photo session?" Part 1 of 6 - General

      You just booked a session with ALArms Photography! YAY GO YOU! Now, you have a few weeks until the date is here, and like everyone, you want to look your best, of course. These photos are going to be hanging on the wall or sitting on the mantel for years to come, so this is important business!

      :o)

      No worries - I am going to help you as much as possible because the end result, that being a happy client with awesome portraits, is all I'm concerned about because I want you go to tell all your friends and family how great these photos are and when they ask where you got them done you'll proudly say ALArms Photography!  

      So you start going through magazines and pinterest* getting inspired for style tips, make up tips and poses that you like and you are pinning everything you like and keeping track of all those great photos you have seen because you are going to try and recreate a couple of these at your own session.
      *If you really are doing this, make sure to tag me @Amanda Arms so I can see what your looking to recreate or what your are inspired by - thus helping me get to know, even better, what it is you are looking to create during our session together.

      You probably are going to try some new make-up techniques so you have been practicing using those techniques only to end up looking like a raccoon that's been in a fight with a circus clown, but that's ok... practice makes perfect! So go head girl... keep on working that shimmer shine!

      If you are wondering what other things you should prep for and think about before your session, your in luck because I am going to post for you a list of things to consider before you step in front of my camera (or anyone elses for that matter) and strike that pose!

      Take a look at the list below of "general" advice as to how to prepare for your up coming photo session. Up coming posts will be less lengthy but will talk about specific sessions and what to think about when prep-ing for them.


      General Advice:
      • Hair – If you’re getting a hair cut or color for your shoot, do so about two weeks beforehand, just in case it goes wrong – you just never know. For men, a fresh cut a couple of days before the shoot is fine.

      • Hair accessories – Because we will be shooting outdoors, be ready to put your hair up and make it look nice in case of a windy day. Bring bobby pins, hair clips, headbands or any other favorite accessories.

      • Glasses - If people wouldn’t recognize you without glasses, you want to wear glasses in your shoot – however, the glare on glasses can detract from your eyes in photos. You can have your lenses removed from your frames for your shoot (don’t worry, it’s what Hollywood does to avoid glare in movies), you can get a cute pair of reading glasses from Wal-mart or some other thrifty type place and take the lenses out for cool & fresh look.

      • Red eyes – Visine is your friend. Not getting drunk the night before your shoot helps, too. It happens! IF you need to use Visine be sure to do it a couple of times before your shoot but not directly before so you don't ruin make-up or have wet looking lashes that are matted together.

      • Lips – You will probably wipe, kiss or lick your lipstick off during your shoot, so bring fresh lip gloss or lipstick to do touch-up. Use lip balm for a few days in advance of your shoot to make your smoochers look their best. Staying hydrated will help the "crust factor" as well.

      • Teeth – If you want to brighten your smile, start your treatments about two weeks before your shoot. Please don't go over board with the whitening of the teeth and tanning of the skin...
             you WILL end up looking like an oompa loompa <---- NOT COOL!

        • Breakouts – Don’t cake on a lot of make-up to try to hide blemishes – it’s almost always easier to Photoshop away pimples than to clean up overdone make-up. For fever blisters, avoid getting them in the first place, then use Abreva if one pops up anyway.

        • Make-up – A subtle application of make-up can really soften your skin and accent your facial features. But make sure you know what you’re doing, and make sure it matches your skin tone, or your face may look orange compared to the rest of your body. If it's a rather warm day, bring some translucent facial powder to combat shine from oil/perspiration.

        • Facial hair – Men, be freshly shaved with a new razor, shaving cream and a moisturizing after-shave lotion to avoid bumps and redness. Trim up your board, sideburns, moustache or goatee, especially looking for wiry stray hairs. Ladies, even if you have some light facial hair (particularly around your lip or chin), indulge in a waxing in advance of your shoot – even barely-there light facial hair will be noticeable in your photos. Men and women both, pluck and clean up those eyebrows.

        • Moisturizer – Dry skin can really detract from a great photo shoot. Start moisturizing nightly a week in advance of your shoot. When you get out of the shower, dry off until lightly damp, and slather on moisturizer. Focus on your arms, shoulders, neck, face, hands, anywhere you’ll be exposed to the camera. This includes your legs if you’re shooting in shorts or a skirt. ProTip: For dry skin on your face, especially around your nose, use a sugar scrub. Mix a cup of sugar with about a quarter cup of olive oil, or just until it looks like wet sand. Scrub your face with it anywhere you have flaky skin, wash it off, then wash with soap to remove the oil. The sugar paste shouldn’t be oily, just wet enough to moisten the sugar. Also, be sure on your face to use a facial moisturizer, not a thick body moisturizer, or you could break out. [men, are most in need of this advice, especially around the face and hands.]

        • KILL SHINE for Men & Women: If it's a rather warm day, bring a hand towel or paper towels to dab away perspiration and don't forget translucent facial powder to combat shine from oil/perspiration. Men, I promise I will not say a word about your use of make-up and trust me your loved ones will thank me for it when they get their photos back with a non-oily, non-shiny handsome face in it.

        • Nails – A fresh coat of nail polish will make a world of difference in your photo shoot. Pick a neutral color that won’t distract in your shoot or clash with your outfits. Freshen the morning of the shoot, then be careful not to scuff it while prepping. [I see this most often with high school senior girls, to whom half-gone nail polish seems to be a popular fad.] Your photo shoot is a great excuse for a fresh manicure, but if you can’t go to the salon, make sure your nails look tidy and clean, including the cuticles. If all else fails, just take all the paint off completely and go without.

        • Bloating – Ladies, avoid high salt and high fat foods for two to three days in advance of your shoot. Being bloated will zap your confidence and comfort in front of the camera.

        • Undergarments – Bra straps won’t do anything to help your outfit look its best. Be sure you bring a set of bras and strap-adjusting accessories to work with any outfit you want to shoot in to keep those straps well-hidden.

        • Sun burns and tan lines – If your shoot is booked for Saturday, don’t go to the tanning bed on Friday. If you plan to tan before your shoot, do so at least a week beforehand and don’t get burned. Be mindful of clothing tan lines, sunglasses tan lines, hat tan lines, etc.

        • Ironing - If you iron, iron the night before and then hang the clothes for your shoot. If you’re wearing something that wrinkles easily, don’t wear it in the car on the way to the shoot – just change at the location.

        • Shoes – Ladies, can’t go wrong in heels or wedges. Men, clean’em up! Dress shoes are best, but as with most things, let your momma or your wife decide.
        That's all for now, as if that wasn't enough... Keep an eye out for those session specific tips to follow.

        Part 2 - Family Sessions
        Part 3 - Senior Sessions
        Part 4 - Children Sessions
        Part 5 - Maternity Sessions
        Part 6 - Newborn Sessions


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        Sunday, February 12, 2012

        Project 52 - Glimpses week 6


        It's the week of Valentines Day 

        I wanted to share the valentines I made for Tre this year.

        It was pretty FREEZING outside this day and Tre was doing good but i forgot to get my settings together BEFORE we went outside so it took me a little longer than usual because i tend to prepare with Tre because i know he has an attention span of literally 10 seconds. So i was trying to get him to look at the camera and make a good smile instead of a crazy, cheesy smile but all he was giving was CRAZINESS (that's my boy).

        Somewhere in the midst of his crazy smile he started giving me a good smile because he was making "crazy eyes" and he thought he was being funny. At the time i was getting frustrated because he wasn't doing what i wanted but when i got them on the computer to see if ANYTHING AT ALL turned out... this one jumped at me.

        It totally shows Tres personality... pure goofiness!
        Child stands NO chance with parents like Mark n me. :o) HA

        I can't even remember where i seen this idea but i thought it was super cute and something you can use for any holiday or even birthday parties or baby showers etc.  

        So if this is something your interested in, let me know the day of your shoot so we can make sure to get a photo for it.

        If your ONLY interested in something like this with out the rest of the "session" let me know.

         Join the fun at chic critique and share a glimpses from your life :o)



        Now booking Spring Appointments!


         
        HIGH SCHOOL JUNIORS:
        Don't forget that I am now accepting applications for 2013 Senior Rep check out all the goodies you get.

        New this year: if you have a iphone 4/4s you could receive a free iphone case with your favorite photo on it, as a free gift from me for doing a really good job :o)


        MONTH OF FEBRUARY: Book a February session and receive a 25% discount off the full session price only



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        Thursday, February 9, 2012

        What to Wear | February Style

        February, the month of LOVE!

        These boards are to simply inspire clients because the days of khakis/jeans and white button down shirts/Polo's for the entire family are LONG GONE!


        Here are some ideas for fun pops of color in your shoot.



        *  *  *  *  *


        These fashion boards for what to wear for your session guides are merely to give you an idea of would work well in your photography shoot or what I would love to see a client wear. These fun little boards are NOT to make you go purchase these exact selections on the day they come out at the store nor are they designed to diminish your own sense of style.


        By all means I want you to come to your session fully dressed in the attire that screams "ME" because those will be the photos that best represent YOU at this moment in time.


        Rummage your closet and pull something together to emulate these fashions.


        For family sessions start with the family member that has the least amount of items to work with, then select a color that is common to the whole family's wardrobe or that can be coordinated with another common color of the family's attire.


        Then go to the next family members closet and choose something that coordinates with what you have just chosen. This does NOT mean choosing the SAME exact color but a choice with the same color family or style. 


        Continue this until everyone has an outfit, then lay them out next to each other to make sure they actually do look well side by side, layered, etc.  


        I intend to post a new fashion board monthly, but if you need MORE fashion boards, RIGHT NOW...
        Please visit my Pinterest board of "Inspire my clients style"



        Now booking Spring Appointments!


        HIGH SCHOOL JUNIORS:
        Don't forget that I am now accepting applications for 2013 Senior Rep check out all the goodies you get.

        New this year: if you have a iphone 4/4s you could receive a free iphone case with your favorite photo on it, as a free gift from me for doing a really good job :o)


        MONTH OF FEBRUARY: Book a February session and receive a 25% discount off the full session price only



        Network with me:
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        Monday, February 6, 2012

        Project 52 - Glimpses week 5


        Look at this handsome mess here!
        This is my baby boy, my first born, my "reason" for life...
        He is just 2 months away from turning 5 and he has (in a short couple of months) turned into a "gamer" I am seriously going to have to restrict long periods of time on this thing because if not, he would literally spend the entire day on this game and wake up in the middle of the night to play some more while everyone else is asleep.
        Anyway, going into week five of my project 52 and I already feel like I am "slacking" on my photos - I didn't even touch my camera till last night when I remembered I still had to post.
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