Brittany | Ever After Model Team 2016

Continuing with my model team introductions, I am so happy to have Brittany Klinge on board!  I am completely in love with her beautiful doe-eyed gaze and her flawless skin.  She absolutely glows in her images! Brittany  is a cheerleader for Clemens High School and she is a member of PALS, a Peer Assistance and Leadership program where she is able to mentor younger students.  Welcome to the Ever After team, Brittany!

We are now booking Fall sessions for the class of 2016.  Call 210-602-1490 for a detailed session information magazine.

Valentines Mini Sessions

I'm incredibly excited to announce my Valentines mini-sessions for this year, mostly because I LOVE how the set turned out!  I asked my son Garrett, who is 12, if he could build a kissing booth for me.  It seems like a tall order and I was a little worried that he couldn't pull it off, but it looks fabulous.  He and his friend Frederick cut the boards and nailed it all together with only a little bit of help.  It looks adorable and it was perfect for what I had in mind. Enough gushing about my son, I guess I really should tell you about the sessions.  :)

Valentines Mini Session Ad
Valentines Mini Session Ad

This year, I am including a set of 25 custom Valentines Day cards with every session.  They are 3x3 flat cards, and have an image on the front with text on the back.  I"m thinking I'll add a piece of candy taped to the back of the ones I create for my daughter.   I have several designs to choose from, here is a small sample:

3x3 double-sided Valentines Card
3x3 double-sided Valentines Card
3x3 double-sided Valentines Card
3x3 double-sided Valentines Card

The sweet girls pictured above are my daughter and her two BFFs. I can accommodate up to three kids in one mini-session, but for extra cards there will be an additional fee of $30 per set.

My mini-session slots usually fill quickly, so please don't wait too long!

Wall Art Wednesday

Until a couple of years ago I was strictly a "shoot and burn" photographer, which meant that after the photo shoot, I burned the images on a CD and called it a day.  That was great for a while, but I found myself wondering after the session what they did with the images.  Did they like them?  Did they display them or leave them in a drawer still on the CD?  There were even a few times that I visited my clients homes and realized that they made some framing and print size choices that I know I could have helped them with.  And that made me sad because I knew what the possibilities were. Naturally, I made the decision that I wanted to do more for my clients, and so for the past couple of years I've been able to help my clients get their images off their hard drives and CD's and onto their walls.  I can't tell you how happy it makes me to know that the images I took are hanging in their homes and being enjoyed as Art.

I recently helped my friend and client Amy White with an image that we took last year during her Christmas family session.  She knew that she wanted something for her mantel, so I created a few mock-ups using a picture she emailed to me of her fireplace.  This one was a vertical 16x20:

16x20 B
16x20 B

It looks pretty good, and there is space on both sides for a sconce or even more images and frames, but the original image is horizontal and she wanted more of the colorful, Texas hillcountry background to show:

16x20 Custom Frame from Wild Sorbet
16x20 Custom Frame from Wild Sorbet

This one uses the horizontal space well, but I thought we could go quite a bit larger.

Here is the last one I sent:

20x30 A
20x30 A

Now we're talking!  We both loved it, and at 20" x 30" it was going to be quite a statement!   We had a few more conversations about frame style and color, and then it was time to order.  Fast forward to this week- Amy sent this after she and her husband got her print and custom frame hung up:

IMG_7511
IMG_7511

Oh my gosh, it looks fantastic!  I love how she brightened up the entire mantel and the teal walls on the side are amazing.  Love, love, love.  Helping my clients out with custom prints and framing is one of my favorite things to do, and this so soooo much better than the "shoot and burn" stuff I did back then.  I've been very lucky lately to design and order several more wall galleries for recent clients, and I"m hoping that I'll get them to share a snapshot of how they turn out.  Fingers crossed!

Until next time...

FALL 2013 SESSIONS

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Yippee!! Autumn is almost here! This is the busiest time of the year for family portraits, and believe it or not it's time to begin thinking about your Christmas card plans. Here is everything you need to know about getting portraits of your family before the holiday rush:

Signature Sessions

The best way to get creative images that truly reflect the personalities of your family members is with a Signature Session. I'll meet with you for a planning consultation so that we can brain-storm an awesome location for your family. I'll also help out with clothing decisions and answer any questions you might have. The session itself can take place just about anywhere your family would love to go for fun! Landa Park, Morgan's Wonderland, or even your own backyard are just a few ideas of great locations. Sessions take place weekdays 9-2 AM, M-W-F 3-7 PM, weekends are 8-11 AM or 3-7 PM. My weekend sessions fill up fast, so book early to secure the best spot! The Signature Session fee is $150, with a $50 discount for returning clients.  Prints and products are sold seperately, with packages beginning at $440.

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Mini Sessions

Mini sessions are quick & easy, a great little slice of fun without the whole production of a full session. Minis are 15 minutes long and done on selected weekends at specific locations. Each mini is good for 2 people (two kids, one kid and one parent, etc) but you can book two consecutively to get a whole family. A minimum of 10 retouched images will be posted to an online gallery, and you will have permission to download them immediately to your computer. The Mini Session fee is $99. This year’s minis are as follows:

Sat. Oct. 12th 3-6 PM Rockwall Ranch

Sun.  Oct. 20th 3-6 PM Gruene TX

Sat. Nov 2nd 2-5 PM Pearl Brewery/River Walk

 

Christmas Cards

card01

I love creating Christmas cards for my clients every year, but this year's cards really stand out...literally! The center of the design has a perforated ornament that pops out and becomes an instant keepsake for your friends and family:

I'll have a full lineup of card designs to choose from, with different price points and customization options.  Templates can be found HERE.   Cards must be ordered before Dec. 1st, but you can request your envelopes early to get a head start getting them addressed.

 

 

What to Wear

This is the most difficult part of the process, but I'm here to help! Here are my six top pieces of advice:

Avoid the "matchy-matchy" thing. The current trend in photography is for everyone to blend together in similar tones and styles. White shirts and khaki pants are a thing of the past.

Avoid large blocks of white, especially on just one person because they will stand out from the group-trust me!

Pay attention to everyone's shoes! Boys frequently have bright tennis shoes with neon shoestrings, switch those out if you can.

Long sleeves are the most flattering, especially if you are self-conscious about how your arms look.

You can be "Christmassy" or not! The choice is yours, there isn't a right or wrong.

Be yourself!  The point of a family session is to capture the relationships between all of you and to show who you are at this moment, not your clothing and stiff smiles. Don't stress too much about how everyone looks and come ready to relax and have fun!

 

Throwback Thursday | Schertz Senior Portraits

I thought it would be fun to do a regularly scheduled post each week featuring a past client, and since today is Valentines Day I wanted to start off with one of my loves, my beautiful daughter Devon! Most of these are from last year when Devon graduated from high school.  Now she lives in Arizona in a cute little house with two of her friends.  I miss her so, so much, but we talk on the phone several times a day and just started skyping the other day.  She loves her job, her classes and her roommates, and she is as happy as she can be.  Of course, I'm thrilled that she is happy, that is all I want for her!

Like a lot of moms, I don't have enough of the portraits that I've taken of her hanging on the walls of our home, so today I was going through my digital files and taking a trip down memory lane.  Here are a few of my favorite images

dev blog

bI'll get to see Devon again in a couple of months, and if I'm lucky we'll have time for another portrait session.  I don't think we've ever gone this long without getting any new ones before!

  Happy Valentines Day, sweetheart!  I love you and I hope you are having a wonderful day!

Shari + Patton: Scottsdale Wedding Reception

Bride and groom laughing together during wedding portraits.

As Shari sat at her weekly women's prayer group with her head bowed, she prayed to the Lord for a husband. She wanted someone strong, someone that made her laugh, and most importantly, someone with whom she could share her faith.

She looked up to see Patton walk into the room, and quickly added to her prayer. "Someone like that, please, would be just fine. Amen."

What Shari didn't know was that she had caught Patton's eye as well, and that Patton had been praying for someone just like her.

As Shari puts it, "Conversation led to laughter, laughter led to charm, charm led to joy, joy lead to the Lord and the Lord led us to love."

Patton and Shari were married this summer in Colorado, in a sunlit field surrounded by family and friends and graced with the presence of God. Shari's stunning daughter Tatum was the maid of honor. Patton's daughters Annalise and Maci Lynn were the adorable flower girls. Coleen Takemoto, Shari's friend, did the food and flowers and her husband Arnold walked Shari down the aisle. The wedding was just as it should have been-intimate, touching, joyous and full of worship for the Lord.

It was everything that Shari had prayed for, and Patton was more than she had hoped for.

Coleen and Arnold had one more gift for the newlyweds-a candlelit reception at their beautiful Scottsdale home so that those who couldn't make it to the ceremony in Colorado could still share in the joy.

Shari and Patton once again dressed in their wedding attire and spent the evening laughing, eating fabulous food, and thanking their closest friends for holding them up in prayer until the day came that the Lord brought them together.

The evening wasn't just about Shari and Patton, that much was clear. It was about the faith, friendship and love of everyone present. And as each guest left, they took home with them the knowledge that they had touched the lives of Shari and Patton in a powerful way.

To view a slideshow of the evening, please click here:

 

http://everafter.smugmug.com/Weddings/Shari-Patton/i-mCbdZSj

CANDY LAND | SAN ANTONIO CONCEPT PHOTOGRAPY

Concept Portrait Sessions.  As far as I know, there isn't anyone in San Antonio that specializes in them...until now!  Like the name suggests, a concept session is one where there is a theme, or concept, that the entire session is based on.  Many times the theme is based on a fairy tale or childhood story, such as Goldilocks or Red Riding Hood.  There are also circus themes, lemonade stands, fishing days, it seems like anything can be turned into a concept session with a little of creativity. Last week, I had a Concept Session for one of my very favorite little girls, Gracie, who needed portraits to celebrate her 5th birthday.   Her mom and I threw around a few different ideas, but after a bit of brainstorming she knew that a Candy Land theme would be perfect for her birthday girl.

To get all of the details just right, we met up one morning at Hobby Lobby to shop.  It was so much fun to bounce ideas off each other.  In addition to the purchased items (candy, pinwheels, stool), she had some pieces from home that we used (white shelves, gumball machine), her mom added a few vintage items (crate table, cash drawer), and some of the things were mine (rug, vases).

Gracie's white dress and little pink hair bow really helped the images look innocent, fresh and timeless.  I am in love with how everything turned out.  At their Premier Session this morning, Casey mentioned how much fun they had doing the session.

gracie01 Girls, I had a ton of fun too!

xoxo, leah

WALL ART DESIGN

  One of the best ways to decorate your home is with portraits of your beautiful family, but it also happens to be one of the things that can strike fear into even the most decorating-savvy moms out there.  The entire process of choosing the perfect image, size and location is often so difficult that many people end up with a disc full of un-printed images and mass-produced art on their walls.

It doesn't have to be this way!  One thing you might not know is that when I come to your home for your Session Premier, you will get a virtual preview of  how your images might look on your walls, in frames that have been custom selected for your home.  It's a fabulous service and I'm thrilled to be able to offer it to my clients.

 

8x10-5x7

 

Imagine how loved and cherished your children will feel when they see that you chose to hang images of them in exquisite custom frames, on the most prominent wall of your home.  In my own home, the image wall in the front room is always the first thing that visitors comment on, and it's my personal favorite space.   In fact, I'm planning a new wall gallery now for the space over the stairs as well as a large 20x30 framed print over the sofa.

If you need some more inspiration, check out my Pinterest Wall Gallery board.

xoxo, leah

HELLO AGAIN, HELLO

I love blogs.  I love to read them, and for a very long time I loved to write one.  But in the last two years or so I fell out of the habit.  Facebook was the biggest reason; why write up an entire story about a portrait session when I could upload a few images, tag my clients and reach hundreds more people?  It's fast and effective, and it appealed to my need for instant gratification.  What's not to love about that? But like so many other things in life, the easy way isn't usually the best way.  Facebook can be superficial, like a quick phone call to catch up on the neighborhood gossip.  Blogging is more like a weekend trip with your best friend.  You go a lot deeper, laugh, cry and share more than you probably should.  Of course, blogging takes a ton of time; from getting to know my clients really well so that I have something to say, to organizing my thoughts, to actually sitting here writing it all down.  But looking back on it, I realize that it brought a level of connection between me and my clients that Facebook can't touch.  And I miss that connection.

So here I am!  As you can see, I have a new blog  that better reflects the direction my business has taken.  After we moved back home to San Antonio last summer, I decided that my business was looking shabby and it needed some sprucing up.  I've revamped my products, paired down the types of sessions that I do, and completely overhauled the experience that my clients will have with me from now on.  It's a new Ever After Photography, and it deserved a nice new blog.

I've done this too long to make any promises about how often I'll blog (in my very first post in 2006 I thought I'd do this every single day-INSANE!), but I am incredibly excited about my upcoming clients and I'm already looking forward to sharing their stories.  In fact, you can look forward to a post about Paige Andabaker, my fabulous Clemens High School Senior Portrait Rep very soon.  Just to whet your appetite, here's a little peak at what we did last week:

 

Paige Blog 01

 

 

Thanks so much for stopping by, I hope you come again soon!

xoxo, leah