June 2020 Inspirations: Best Baby/Child/Family Image

Inspiration can come when you least expect it. As photographers, we are visual artists. We express ourselves through our camera and the images we create. Inspirations represents a sampling of our industry and the vision of professional photographers from around the world.Congratulations to all our featured artists. Be inspired and…

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How to Build Your Photography Website With WordPress in 2020: Part 2

Wordpress is a platform with the power to build almost anything you want, but all that freedom makes it really tricky to navigate. Until I found the right tools through a lot of trial and error and crashed sites, I found it frustrating as well (in fact, as I write this, we’re dealing with the headache of switching the ShutterFest site to a new server). In this series, I want to save you all those headaches and show you the entire process of building a Wordpress site for your photography business, from beginning to end.

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High Key, Low Budget

High key lighting is a highly sought after and easy to create technique when you know how to do it. In this month's feature, I’ll show you how to create beautiful high key lighting on a low budget. I’ll take a reductionist approach, walking you step by step from the most complex, pro level, gear-intensive method, to a great 50% midway point, and then to our final 1-light method, the subject of this month’s tutorial.

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Motherhood Portraits: Thinking Beyond Newborn

In my self-discovery with newborn portraits, if you will, I realized I was photographing newborns how I had seen everyone else photograph them. Mistake #1. The one thing I am always encouraging other photographers to do is to find your groove, find your style. I was guilty of not doing this myself. I know... me! Can you believe it?!?! I mean, my rule of thumb is to create what you want… how you envision it, and then you market so the right people can find you for exactly what you do. We don’t shoot like others because we think that’s what our clients want. Because we all already know most of the time clients have no idea what they want. We educate them because we are the professional and we have a style.

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Self Portrait Composites in Quarantine

I’m not a patient, nurturing person by nature, so being at home with a 2.5-year-old and a 5-month-old is literally taking up 120% of my effort, patience, and mental capacity. I couldn’t help but feel like the moment I’d put one toy away, another one had exploded all over the floor. How is this happening?! She’s only one kid! My head was spinning from her boundless energy and short attention span. So that’s where the idea for this image was born. Composites don’t have to be hard and daunting, and you don’t need to be a Photoshop guru to create them either. If you keep a few important concepts in mind, you’ll be shocked at how easy it is. In this article I’ll walk you through the step by step process for creating this image.

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Filming Your Kids

In this day and age of iPhones and uber-camera-equipped Android devices, do we really need to consider anything else to film our children? It’s a valid question. Phone cameras are getting better with every iteration. Some can even rival DSLR and mirrorless image quality in outdoor, daylight conditions. I would say, however, that if filming your kids is a project that you really want to inject with your full arsenal of photography and videography skills, a phone will be limiting.

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One Window, Multiple Shots

The versatility you can achieve with just one window is amazing. I’ve often heard the excuse, “I don’t have a beautiful space or home to shoot in.” At one point in my life, while my family was in the middle of building a home, we lived in a tiny, old, drafty apartment. It was far from picture perfect, but in the right light none of that mattered.

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Tips for Working With Children (and Parents)

Photographing newborns is one thing, but photographing children requires a whole lot of knowledge about child development, bribery, and cognitive behavior. I have been photographing children since I became an aunt 26 years ago. I remember when I first started observing my nieces and nephews, I was in love with their every move. I could quietly photograph them and it seemed so easy. I wasn’t their “parent” or their “paid photographer”—just Aunt Ana with a camera.

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Tips for a Successful Sleepy Newborn Session

Whether you specialize in baby photography or you just book the occasional newborn client, you’ve probably experienced one of the most frustrating parts of the job: newborns who don’t want to sleep. It probably doesn’t sound like an issue at first. So what? Just pose them awake! Except that awake newborns don’t always equal content newborns, and it’s a lot harder than it seems to pose a wiggly, arm-flailing, cross-eyed, screaming baby. We’ve had our share of super-alert newborns. We’re going to share how we approach those sessions without getting frustrated and still get the variety needed to fill a gallery in 3 hours or less. 

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