Every single time I teach my DSLR photo class I love it more. As any of you who knew me as a yearbook adviser/teacher realize, I tend to add things to my classes and then, somehow, some way—always—those little additions become part of the class forever. And our Head Shot/Family Photos practice we do during the second class has become one of those additions. I love when my students not only get to learn about how to use those DSLR cameras better, but actually get to take home some really great photos. I have the best life! Just sayin’.
Okay, my grandsons are cute and I love photographing them. But Marielle? She is a dream model!! I am so glad she was in class with a couple of my grandsons so I could meet her and her delightful mom, Sara. And every time I have had the privilege of photographing her, she has owned the camera. That smile. That impishness. That sense of style. (Thanks, Sara, for the adorable outfits!) I so look forward to photographing her again and again. And Sara, you look amazing as well!!
When Josh and Jamee contacted me for family photos, I was thrilled as I love, love photographing this family. And then they added in the cousins so they could surprise my dear friend Jim (the cousins’ grandfather) for Father’s Day. Thus the day got even better. We had so much fun and tried out so many combinations of photos, that this small sample doesn’t begin to cover all the great smiles and family connections I was privileged to photograph. Thanks, Josh and Jamee, for one more great experience!! And Happy Belated Father’s Day, Jim!
I am so excited to share these photos of Rex and his parents, Ryan and Rebecca. Their joy with their darling son is so evident that it was hard to stop taking photos. And Rex, bless his heart, managed to stay awake throughout almost the entire two hour session! Normally, I love to photograph sleeping newborns (with some awake shots as well), but Rex was so alert and delightful that he nailed all his poses! I especially love the one of him and Maeve’s bear. Thank you, Ryan and Rebecca, for the privilege of photographing you all.
I can’t believe it has been six weeks since I photographed Jon and Lauren as they celebrated ten years together and prepared to welcome their darling baby boy. After we finally found a spot that actually had flowering trees and then waited out the intense rainstorm that hit just as our session was to begin, the day and the couple were perfect. They are both so warm and wonderful to work with that I don’t even mind that their favorite team is clearly not the Denver Broncos. And I can’t wait to meet their little one! Thank you again, Jon and Lauren, for the privilege of photographing this important time in your lives.
Lizza and Cory are sports enthusiasts (albeit for different teams!) who know when to make the call. Yesterday afternoon the clouds loomed and the rain threatened, but that didn’t keep them from choosing to marry on the side of the mountain above Spruce Mountain Ranch. And their decision proved perfect, as the day turned out to be exactly that. I cannot even begin to describe how wonderful this day was. So instead of lots of words, I decided to upload lots of photos. (And there are so many more to come!) Thank you, Lizza and Cory, for allowing me to record the special moments of your special day. May the rest of your lives be as joyous as this day was. And a special shout out to Abigail Oxford Kroening, my assistant photographer, whose images also appear on this blog.
My goal this spring was to teach a photo class because, well, I love teaching this class. Since I am primarily an outdoor photographer and the scenery around Denver in February and March and April is rather…bleak, to say the least, I figured I’d teach a class—which turned into three fabulous classes. And now that the weather is getting better and better (fingers crossed), I can’t wait to teach a few more!
Teaching these photo classes reminds me of the days I advised the yearbook staff at Overland High School. Each year, the students would think up some crazy new idea to make the class more interesting/creative/memorable (fake hall passes, Santa letters on butcher paper in the office, Monday Morning Raffles…the list is almost endless). And once the event happened once, it became a “tradition” for later classes. (Which is why the list is almost endless.)
My photo class is evolving in much the same way, and I love it. Now on the second day of class, we do head shots for participants and practice our posing and the use of light and action photography. We encourage people to bring their kids and pets to model during the last hour of class. We even have a written quiz. 🙂
And we learn. And it really is fun. Enjoy these few photos from this spring’s classes. I can’t wait to post more as we add even more “traditions” into the class!
I love natural light. I love the way diffused light falls in the early morning. I love the effect of the “Golden Hour” (that hour right before sunset when the rays turn warm and flattering). I love backlighting. I love direct sunlight (sometimes). I love using the light to highlight and flatter my subjects. I’ll use flash if I can’t get the light the way I want it naturally, but only if it makes my subject look better or the sun doesn’t want to cooperate.
Light is so important that I spend a huge amount of time teaching about it in my DSLR class (DSLR Classes) and I actually scout locations at various times of day so I can find the best spots and times for photo shoots.
And while it is hard to get the right exposure when working with challenging light situations (harsh contrast, for example), it is such a reward when the photos show the subject in the best possible light. (I couldn’t resist that one!)
Following are examples of how capturing natural light makes a photo better. Some are in bright sunlight, others take advantage of clouds or backlighting. And for several, I just turned the model around to show you the difference that makes. But each photo is taken without the use of any flash. And if you would like to learn how to use light more effectively while photographing, I’d love to teach you!
When Jan and Floyd’s children decided to give them a family photo session for their Christmas present, I was all for it! Especially because daughter Kristen chose me to document their family. 🙂 At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I am so lucky that Kristen has stayed in touch with me over the years (mostly through Facebook) after being one of my favorite students back in the day. I love that she pursued journalism as her career and love even more seeing her with her darling boys and husband, David. And the rest of the family was equally welcoming and warm. It was the perfect way to end my photo sessions for 2015!!
I love photographing families over time. And when I have the privilege of photographing both maternity and newborn sessions, life gets even better. And when the mom, Staci, is one of my favorite former students, well, life is perfect. Darling Kelsey arrived a couple of weeks early, giving big sister Kyler the perfect Christmas present. Thanks, Mark and Staci, for the opportunity to document these special moments in your lives! I have so enjoyed the past few years watching Kyler grow and can’t wait to see how Kelsey does as well. Happy New Year!