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Westchester County Photographer

Tips on Preparing for Your Maternity Photo Session

Tips on Preparing for Your Maternity Photo Session

Bringing a baby into the world is a wonderful life event that should be captured. It’s a time you are going to want to remember and share with your little one once they are a bit older. If you are thinking about or have recently booked a maternity photo session then the below tips should come in handy as your prepare for your session. 

1.     Schedule your session between 31 and 36 weeks as your tummy should have popped and have a beautiful shape. By booking your maternity session during this time you are also past the discomfort and bloating that happens earlier in the pregnancy. 

2.     We know how important it is to moisturize those knees, elbows and belly but we recommend you do so 1 – 2 hours before the session to avoid any shininess or sticky clothes. You should also avoid wearing any tight fitting watches or bracelets that might leave marks on your skin.

3.     Treat yourself to a neutral or light colored manicure 1 – 2 days prior to your maternity session so that you can take some beautiful shots with your hands on your tummy.

4.     If you already have some cute baby items such as shoes, hats, toys, blankets or onesies, bring them along as they make for adorable props. The same applies to family heirlooms. If you have a special locket or photo that you would like to use, bring it along too.

5.     More and more moms are using their ultrasound photos in their photo sessions. If you aren’t too sure whether you want to use it or not, bring it to the shoot anyway and decide on the day.

6.     Take the time to pick the right outfit for the maternity shoot. You should of course be comfortable but make sure that your clothing doesn’t detract from your tummy’s shape and your natural glow. Avoid large, bold patterns or clothing that is too loose. Empire waists, drawstrings, flowing tops and wrap dresses are perfect for enhancing your shape.

 

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6 Ways to Always Look Fantastic in Photos

6 Ways to Always Look Fantastic in Photos

From school yearbooks to friends’ weddings, we’ve all been in front of camera at some point or another and if you’ve recently looked at a photo with disdain then this post’s for you. If you know that you’re going to have a lens pointed in your direction in the near future, below are six simple ways to get better results.

1.     Get to Know Your Face. This applies to professional photoshoots as well as every day photos. Take time getting to know your face, how to smile naturally and which side or angle of your face you like better.

2.     Easy on the makeup. While an evening out is a different story when it comes to makeup, if you’re having headshots, family or maternity photos taken, go easy on the makeup. You want some basic coverage but don’t overdo it. You should also only stick to accentuating one part of your face so choose either your eyes or lips but not both.

3.     Facing the camera. Your photographer will help you when it comes to posing for photos but in general you shouldn’t be facing the camera head on. Positioning your body at an angle always makes for better photos.

4.     Controlling your chin. Photos where your neck is elongated and your chin is pushed slightly forward will lift your face and give it a more angular look. You might want to practice this beforehand in order to get used to it.

5.     Pick your outfit carefully. Put some thought into what you’ll wear to your shoot. Pair bold designs and patterns with solid colors to avoid too much distraction. You should also pay attention to the fit and shape of your outfit. Make sure it compliments you and that you feel comfortable.

6.     Use lighting to your advantage. This is something that your professional photographer will be an expert at but the right lighting can mean the difference between that wow factor and disappointment. Avoid standing directly under a light as this will create weird shadows on your face.  This is something we will help you out with because we are experts so take our advice when we suggest a specific time for photos.  If shooting outdoors, the best light will be 15-20 minues before & after sunset.  Unless it’s an overcast day, we will always try to get you in full shade so that the lighting isn’t dappled or causing weird shadows on your face.

As much as the above tips will help you during your professional photoshoot, always remember to have fun and relax as this will do wonders for your photos.

 

 

 

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Tips for Gorgeous Outdoor Photos

Tips for Gorgeous Outdoor Photos

Being outdoors in the summer sun is a great setting for some fun photos of you and your loved ones. In order to get the best results from your session, there are a few things to consider before you step in front of your photographer’s lens.
1.    Wear sunscreen. If you are going to be out in the sun for a long period of time, especially with children, sunscreen is a must. It can however also make your skin look quite shiny. If possible apply makeup that has built-­‐in sunscreen otherwise apply some powered concealer to spots that look especially oily.
2.    Bring along some tissues & concealer powder. Unless it's a cool day, you're probably going to sweat. Bring along some tissues for dabbing off the sweat and your concealer powder for touch ups.
3.    There might be bugs. Photos in the woods can be romantic and beautiful but depending on the time of day and the area you’re in, it could mean swatting away flies and mosquitos. A little bug repellent can make your photo session a lot more pleasant
4.    Stay hydrated. Posing for pictures may not seem like hard work but in the hot sun, you don't have to move around much to be affected by the heat. Make sure you bring lots of water and other hydrating beverages, and drink up often.
5.    Apply makeup sparingly. You want that fresh, sun kissed look in your photos so don’t overdo your makeup application.
6.    What you wear matters. Choose clothing that is comfortable and fits your body shape. Feel free to incorporate accessories such as a hat but don’t let it overwhelm the photo.
7.    Choose your time of day. Since midday can be scorching, plan your shoot early in the morning or just before the sun sets to avoid looking hot and flustered in your photos.
 

How to Decide What to Wear to Your Photoshoot

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How to Decide What to Wear to Your Photoshoot

Top tips for getting the most out of your professional photography session.

If you are prepping for your first photoshoot you probably have a couple questions about what to expect. A common concern for people having their photos taken for the first time is what to wear.

7 Top Tips for Deciding What to Wear for a Photoshoot

1.      What is the purpose of the photoshoot? This should be your first thought when deciding what to wear. Choose an appropriate outfit for the occasion and something that suits your personality.

2.      Keep the location & season in mind. Where is the photoshoot taking place? Choose an outfit that will keep you feeling comfortable and confident. For example, if you’re on a beach, those new high heels might not be the most logical choice and you might end up looking a bit out of place.

3.      Mix and match. Don’t be afraid to wear patterns or prints for your photoshoot but keep them to a minimum and try to pair them with solid colors. If you’re having a family photoshoot for example, have two family members in printed items and two in solid colors. Play with different colors to match the mood and setting of the shoot.  

4.      Make your photos timeless. You might love that trendy top or pair of pants now but will your photos stand the test of time if you wear that item of clothing?

5.      What to do about makeup. This would depend on the type of photos you are taking. Fashion shoots will call for more dramatic makeup but for your everyday maternity, family or portrait shoots, keep your makeup natural and to a minimum.

6.      Fit is more important that you think. If you already have an outfit in mind for your shoot, try it on before the time to make sure that it fits correctly and compliments your body type.

7.      Try not to go brand crazy. Wearing too much clothing with prominent brand names just makes you look like a walking ad. Clothing with large graphics on it also doesn’t work well as it will end up being the focus of your photos.  

Remember to have fun on your photoshoot, be yourself and don’t hesitate to ask your photographer for guidance.

Check out my recent photoshoot with local photographer and blogger, Nidia Serrano:  

 

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Wedding Planning Tips

Wedding Planning Tips

Yay! You're engaged and ready to start wedding planning! As soon as you have a ring on your finger, people want to know all of the details of your wedding; have you set a date, where will it be held, or how big is your bridal party? Wedding planning is supposed to be fun and exciting, but at times it can be overwhelming. Here are some tips to help you through the planning process! 

Tip 1: Set a Budget: This is one of the most important things that you and your fiancee need to decide early on. Once you set a budget, you need to stick to it. Take it a step further and break it down by how much you want to spend on each vendor. This will help when you receive quotes and meet with vendors to stay within the budget you allocated. 

Tip 2: Set Priorities and Deadlines: Make a list of what items need to happen and in the order they should occur. Once you've set a budget, the next item that you and your partner should be working on is deciding on a venue. Once you have a venue, and you've picked a date, then you start searching for other important vendors such as photography and a planner. 

Tip 3: Ask for Help: This is one of the biggest moments in your life and if you are planning your wedding on your own, don't be afraid to ask friends and family for help. They would be more than willing to lend a helping hand. 

Tip 4: Be Selective With Your Guest List: This is an area where you want to really make sure that  the people who will be attending the wedding are the people you want there and not because you feel obligated to invite them. If you are only inviting close family and friends, that's ok. You also don't have to give every single person a plus one. You can have a no kids wedding, or only ones invited are in the bridal party. All of these decisions are entirely up to you. I suggest making an A, B, and C list of guest invites. The A list are the ones that have to be there, the B list is people would like to and the C list is if there is room in the budget. This is an area where you can save some money by the number of people you invite. 

Tip 5: Take Your Time: Wedding Planning takes time. In the beginning when you decide on date, pick a venue, then all a lot of the planning goes on hold until closer to your wedding date. Take the time to enjoy being engaged and go out on dates. It's also a great idea to practice self-care and make sure you are taking time together with your partner, but also some time for yourself! 

Hope you enjoyed these tips and happy planning! 

Lessons I Learned From My Mother

Lessons I Learned From My Mother

"Moms make life beautiful." At 17 years old, I didn't think so. I thought that my mom was this authority figure that didn't want me to have any fun and have rules in her house that I had to abide by. Now that I am a mother, I understand my mom more. My mom has been with us the last couple of days helping us out with Aubrey because she has been sick and the way that she cares for her grandchild makes me appreciate her more and has made me reflect on all the things my mom did for me that I took for granted. Here are 3 lessons that I have learned from my mother. 

1. Be Patient. When you're tired and your child doesn't want to go to sleep, or she doesn't want to eat the 4th meal you've made for her because she doesn't like anything and is being picky, you have to be patient. I've watched my mom do whatever it takes to calm Aubrey down and to make her happy, even if that means she has fruit snacks and french fries for breakfast. My mom always tells me "it's fine, at least she's eating something." I've watched her chase after Aubrey, playing games with her and engaging her in a way that she used to when I was a child. She has shown me the importance of patience and that as much as I want things planned out, it doesn't work out that way when you have children. 

2. Make Time for Family. I'm a workaholic. I always have been. Since I received my working papers at 14 years old, I started working. Now as an adult, I still work a lot and one of the times my mom was watching Aubrey, my schedule changed and Aubrey had to stay with my mom for an additional three days. It was then my mom told me that Aubrey needed me and that I needed to make her a priority. My first job is being a mom and everything else is secondary. Honestly, it made me feel guilty because I felt like I needed to work in order to help provide for our family and I want to be able to give Aubrey the best life possible, but I had to slow down and take time for my family. Aubrey, at 2 years old sleeps in my bed and snuggles on my side of the bed, and even though at times I hate it, my mom reminds me that there will come a time where she stops crawling into your bed and begin living her own life. She reminds me to enjoy it now, because time will go by faster than you think. 

3. The Meaning of Sacrifice. Now that I am a mom, I realize how much my mom did for me and my siblings when we were younger. My mom was a single mom, with 5 kids, and 2 of them autistic. I was angry at my mom when we were younger, for making me wear my sister's clothes, driving this white old station wagon, and not being able to do things because we didn't have the money to. Now that I am an adult, I realized that my mom did everything she could to survive and make sure that we were taken care of. We were on public assistance and would go down to the Salvation Army for food and I was embarrassed, not realizing how hard my mom had it. When I watch her with Aubrey now, it makes me sad to think how ungrateful I was for everything my mom had done for us. Now, my mom spoils Aubrey and does everything to make her enjoy her time with her. My mom gave up her own happiness and life to make sure that my siblings and I had the best possible life she could give us. My sisters and I all went to private colleges and are successful. None of that would have been possible without the support and the sacrifices my mom made for us. 

As much as I want my mom to live forever, I know that it is not possible and I appreciate her even more now. My mom just turned 68, recovering from cancer and I want her to know that I am proud to be her daughter. I am very happy that I was able to give her a granddaughter to enjoy spending time with. My mom has taught me to be a better person and a better mother and for that I am thankful. 

 

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