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How to Store Old Photos and Preserve Precious Memories

In 2017, people took 1.2 trillion digital photos in 2017. This figure doesn’t account for non-digital photographs. Behind every photo that an individual takes, there’s a story.

A picture will help you relive that moment when you made the most critical decision of your life. It also could be the moment your child took their first step. A photo could also capture members of your family representing four generations. 

Whatever memory your photos bring, it’s only essential that you know how to store old photos. You can frame some pictures or put them in albums. However, there’ll always be large piles stacked away in drawers and boxes. 

Here’s a guide on how to store such photos.

historic camera pictures

1. Always Lay Photographs Flat on Their Backs

Rolling photos should never cross your mind as doing so can cause the back and front to stick together. This will damage the photo’s primary purpose and cause further damage as you unfurl the photograph. Make it easier for yourself and other people to relive those memories by laying the photos flat on their back. 

2. Resist the Urge to Make Adjustments

Photos stored away in boxes or drawers may develop creases. Trying to flatten out such creases may cause damage that you may not notice immediately. Photo experts warn against the use of chemicals in trying to restore a photo. 

You don’t want to destroy the only proof of how amazing you looked in your beautiful wedding dress. Only go for professional services if you’ve got photos in poor condition that you’d like to preserve.

3. Label Your Photos

It’s essential to capture vital details about your photo before storing them away. Things like the date, venue, event, and persons in the picture will help enhance the memory. Label the back of the photo using an archival marker or a soft pencil. 

Avoid using a ballpoint pen to write on the photographs. The pressure from the pen will damage the photo. Besides, the ink might fade with time, watering down your labeling efforts. 

4. Use Acid-Free and Chemically-Neutral Materials to Store Photos

In the past, photo albums were made from magnetic or peel-and-stick materials. These materials were usually ordinary plastic, cardboard, and glue. If this is what you’ve used to store your old photos, consider using modern-type albums. 

When buying a photo album, look for one with an “acid-free” label. The safest place to find such is in a camera store or an art supplies shop. Chemically-free albums will prevent your photographs from acquiring a yellow discolouration. 

Before storing the photos, remove any staples, glue, tape, or rubber bands that may dent, scratch, or stain them. You may stack pictures on top of each other, but separate them using sheets of acid-free paper. 

5. Conditions for Storage

Your photos will only be safe and will last longer if you choose the right storage conditions. Photographs are printed onto paper using ink and various pigments. Their quality can become degraded or compromised over time, depending on the storage conditions. 

Ideally, when choosing a storage spot, think about three primary conditions as follows. 

leather case camera sepia pictures

I). Humidity

The National Archives and Records Administration recommend storing photos between 15% and 65% relative humidity. Storing photos in extremely dry conditions will make the paper brittle. A lot of moisture will create an environment for the growth of mold and mildew on the pictures. 

It will also cause the ink to fade and the pictures to stick to each other. Higher humidity also creates an environment for insect infestations. 

II). Temperature

The temperature of your storage space is essential to consider. This is because photos do well in low temperatures. The process of degradation is slow, and the paper ink doesn’t fade. The area should always stay below 24°C. 

Temperature fluctuations aren’t good, so garages are out of the question for photo storage. 

III). Light

Whether you frame your photos or store them in boxes, keep them away from direct sunlight. Dark locations are an excellent preservation measure as they prevent the ink and pigments from fading. Long exposure of photos to UV and fluorescent light breaks down images and cause them to fade. 

These storage conditions should also apply to your negatives if using film photography. Always clean your hands before handling photos and hold them by their edges. 

Take Away

Photographs tell a story that the owner may not live to tell. Their storage and preservation are of the essence if the memories are to be passed down to future generations. Photos during family gatherings, baby’s milestones, life events like weddings and birthdays are important to families. 

For proper preservation of photos, ensure you use acid and chemical-free materials. When stacking pictures, ensure you put sheets of paper between them to prevent them from sticking together. Other important considerations are humidity, temperature, and light intensity. 

By preserving your precious memories, you’ll have sweet memories to pass to future generations. 

Hope this helps!
Margherita :)

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Convincing Your Family to Get Portraits Done

Get portraits done.. Here's some tips to make it easier.

The secret – how to get portraits done

Many families want to get portraits done but struggle to nail down a date and time everyone is free for a session. From a husband who travels to kids away at uni, there are numerous reasons to keep putting off family portraits. You don’t want the session to be stressful, resulting in stiff, uncomfortable portraits, so you keep making excuses.

There are so many reasons it will never be the perfect time to get family portraits. When you’ve been putting off the task time and time again, suddenly you realise it’s been years since you had portraits taken. You look around your living room and see that the most recent family portrait hanging on the wall is from ten years ago or earlier. If you can relate, you’re not alone. Make family portraits a priority this year, and you’ll be enjoying the results for generations to come.

You don’t have to rush  – but it doesn’t have to take a long time either

Finding a professional photographer who will get your family portraits done quickly and efficiently is key for convincing your family to set up a portrait session. The photographer will be able to get the entire session done in 20 minutes or less. Everyone will look relaxed and natural, resulting in beautiful images. Finding 20 minutes when everyone is free and then convincing them it will be worth the time may still be tough, but it will be a lot less overwhelming than blocking out a few hours. Keep in mind if you have younger kids, it may take slightly longer, but you should be finished within half an hour.

If you have young kids, the best time to schedule a family portrait session is first thing in the morning, right after everyone has been gotten dressed, eaten, and had their morning juice or coffee. When you’re refreshed and well-fed, you’ll be ready to have fun and enjoy the time with your family. Don’t make too big of a deal out of the event so everyone will be as relaxed as possible.

Schedule a time that suits everyone

If you have older kids, an evening session may be preferable so you don’t have to drag them out of bed early in the morning. If you’re taking your portraits outside, an evening session will allow you to take advantage of the soft light during the golden hour. Embrace the time outdoors as a family, and then go out to dinner afterward to complete the evening.

Being flexible will help you get portraits done.

Give your family members some choice in the clothing and accessories they wear and how they style their hair. There’s no need to all wear jeans and white t-shirts or other matching clothing. As long as everyone is wearing primarily neutral clothing and accessories, your outfits will coordinate just fine. When you’re comfortable in the clothes you’re wearing, your confidence will reflect in the pictures. Avoid telling family members to smile. The photographer is a professional and will know how to pose and talk to family members in such a way that they look relaxed and happy in the photos.

A week or so after the portraits are taken, you’ll be able to sit down with your photographer at a time that works for you and select your favourite shots. Your photographer will work with you to narrow down the best shots quickly. From there, you’ll be able to order your chosen shots and get them framed and hung on the wall for everyone to enjoy.

Get your portraits done – efficiently!

Instead of having a marathon two-hour photo session in which everyone is going to be sick of smiling and feel really annoyed and bored, you’ll have an enjoyable 20-minute session in which the whole family is relaxed, comfortable, and engaged. Your professional photographer will choose the right lighting, setting, and poses to get the shots she needs in a short amount of time. It is so much easier to convince your family that the latter type of session will be worth the time and money.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Choosing a Photographer: A Record of Time or Beautiful Portraits?

Choosing a photographer. Are we looking for a record of time or beautiful portraits.

A record of time, or something more?

There are a seemingly endless number of photographers advertising a wide range of services online. It’s often difficult to determine the differences between varying photographers and why they charge such different rates. Some photographers charge a cheap rate for a two-hour sitting and a large number of images on a flash drive. Other photographers charge a sitting fee and sell each image individually as professional prints. So how do we go about choosing a photographer?

The majority of portrait photographers fall into one of two categories. The first category of photographers wants to shoot hundreds, or even thousands, of images, and then hand the client a CD full of images. The second category of photographers wants to shoot a smaller quantity of images and then edit just a handful of these photos to produce a stunning portfolio for the client. The first category of photographers is more focused on time and creating lots of images, and the second category is more focused on creating brilliant images quickly and efficiently and then finishing them properly.

The type of images you’re looking for will help you narrow down the photographer you hire for your upcoming portrait session. How often do you have professional portraits taken? Do you take hundreds of shots on your smartphone or do you reserve picture taking for special occasions? Some people may be satisfied with hundreds of snapshots of their loved ones. Other people are looking to come away with a small selection of gorgeous, posed portraits of their loved ones that they’ll enjoy displaying on their walls for generations to come.

When choosing a photographer, begin with the end in mind

Professional photographers with several decades of experience know how to create ten or less stunning images of a couple or family in a short period of time. You’ll get the shots you want without spending hours posing in a studio or on location. Your photographer will assist you in selecting a location and clothing and will prepare his gear (i.e. lenses, flashes) ahead of time so the session goes as quickly as possible. During the session, the photographer will pose the group quickly to get his shots with minimal trial and error, again reducing the length of the shoot. This process keeps everyone relaxed and happy, ensuring natural poses in the shots.

Once the session is over, he’ll post-process the images to create stunning portraits, unlike anything you take with your smartphone. Most likely you’ll pay more for these professional images, but it will be well worth the money. Instead of sorting through hundreds of shots, the photographer will choose the dozen or so best images and do all the editing work to take the photos up a notch from casual snapshots to professional portraits.

An expert eye for image selection

Some people think their money is better spent on the photographer who will give them a CD full of hundreds of images. From there, they can narrow down the best images themselves. First, most people will never take the time to narrow down their images. Second, most people don’t have the skill set to pull out the few excellent images, much less edit them professionally. Paying for a professional to narrow down and edit the images saves you hours of work and ultimately ensures you’ll end up with beautiful images to display around your home.

Even if you don’t plan to display your photos or use them for holiday cards or another specific purpose, you still may find it’s beneficial to pay for the professional photography services. Having a few snapshots may be just fine for a scrapbook, but if you never narrow down the images you want from your CD with hundreds of images, you won’t use any of the images in your scrapbook. In comparison, when you have a few wonderful images right at your fingertips, you’re more likely to use them right away.

A professional photographer can assist you with an expert eye for image selection.

Give your images the best chance at being enjoyed

The more time goes by, the less chance there is you’ll actually go through your images that have piled up over the years and print and display them. Don’t put off making prints of your children or grandchildren until you reach retirement. The sooner you have professional portraits taken, the sooner you’ll have them printed and up on the wall in frames for everyone to enjoy.

For busy families with lots of commitments outside the home, typically professional portraits make the most sense. You’ll benefit from an efficient photographer who gets brilliant portraits taken in a short period of time, narrowed down quickly, and printed professionally. Some photographers will even assist you with framing and offer tips on the best places to display your new photos in your home. I hope this has helped you in the process of choosing a photographer.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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3 Excellent Reasons to Stop Procrastinating and Get Family Photographs

Are Your Family Photographs at Risk to Disappear?

Why Pay for Professional Family Portraits?

Why Pay For Professional Family Portraits

Many families place a high importance on taking photos of their kids and other loved ones, but they rarely do anything with these photos. Most of the photos are digital. They sit on a hard drive without getting printed or even backed up. It’s nice to have a few photos to look at right now, but these precious photos may not be around in five years, much less 20 or 30 years when you want to show them to your children or grandchildren.

Preserving your memories

While professional family portraits don’t solve the entire problem of preserving the digital photo library, they do offer memory insurance. Kids grow up quickly, parents and grandparents pass away, and everyone is growing and changing, often so rapidly you don’t even realise it until you look back on photos from six months ago. Portraits help you save these fleeting moments and preserve the memories. It’s important to have these memories for yourself but also for future generations who want to understand who they are and where they came from. A future granddaughter who may not look anything like her parents will feel a spark of connection when she sees a great-grandmother who has the exact same eyes or smile.

Gathering your family

Of course, one of the trickiest parts of family portraits is getting everyone together in the same place at the same time, especially as the kids grow up. Many families bemoan the fact that in all of the family pictures they do have, there is always someone missing or one of the kids isn’t looking at the camera. It may be a hassle to hire a professional photographer for your next portrait session, but it also helps you commit to the notion. With a date and time set, you’ll follow through with your decision. Even if you have to reschedule the session once or twice, getting everyone in the photos is so precious. When you see the final results, you’ll be so glad you and your family made the effort.

Why Pay For Professional Family Portraits

Focusing on the fun element of the day together

As you prepare for your upcoming family portrait session, remember it will be a fun opportunity to spend time with your loved ones without having to designate one family member as the photographer. With the right photographer who puts everyone at ease, the day will be straightforward and stress free. The 20 or 30 minute session will fly by with family members laughing and joking the whole time. Instead of a dreaded chore, you’ll look forward to the chance to bond with your loved ones during these rare moments as an entire family.

Selecting an ideal setting

Choosing a location that’s meaningful to your family further puts everyone at ease and adds to the emotion of the photographs. For example, maybe when the kids were growing up, you always spent Saturday mornings in the summer together at the local beach. Returning to the beach when your children are in high school or Uni brings back those cherished memories. Your photographer will have no trouble capturing natural, relaxed expressions as family members retell favourite stories and enjoy being in the familiar spot again.

Ordering and framing prints

Once you’ve invested in a professional family portrait session, you’re more likely to follow through with ordering and framing the prints. Most people never print, much less frame, their personal digital photos, letting thousands of photos back up on the hard drive. When you don’t take the time to cull your photos, it’s all but impossible to find favourite shots again later. Ordering and framing your new family portraits right away ensures you don’t lose your treasured photos in the digital abyss of your massive hard drive. Many professional photographers are happy to help their clients choose frames for their new shots and even assist with hanging them in their homes.

The power of having family portraits hanging on the wall is hard to appreciate until you experience it for yourself. Kids love seeing photos of themselves and will discuss these photos with family and friends for years to come. They also serve as a natural talking point for parents when new friends or out of town relatives come to visit. Knowing that your parents took the time to have the entire family photographed in a favourite setting helps children feel loved and as though they belong within their family.

They hold special place for many families.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Portrait Photography In Spring

Portrait Photography in Spring : Using Colour to Your Advantage Outdoors

Portrait Photography in Spring

As they say a picture’s worth a thousand words and will last for many, many years. We all want to look our best when that moment is captured, so figuring out how best to take advantage of the moment can create questions. Combine that with your surroundings, the season or a theme and the task can be even more daunting.

The spring season is fast approaching, and in my opinion, it is a perfect time to take portraits outdoors and make the most of the beautiful colours that spring brings after winter. Summer is lovely of course, and the other seasons all have something to offer, but there’s just something about spring in Brisbane.

Why Choose Spring for Outdoor Portrait Photography?

1. The Grass Is Greener… All Around

Spring brings life with it. The great outdoors seem to be more alive with vibrant colours. The grass is greener and the flowers are in bloom.

2. Lighting

There is something about the light in spring. It has a kind of soft glow, not quite as harsh as summer.

3. Perfect Weather

It’s not too hot in spring, so no need to worry about looking sweaty or sitting uncomfortably in the heat while trying to get that perfect shot. Children are less likely to start fussing, and even those getting their pregnancy photos done are likely to feel a little more comfortable than in summer.

Outdoor Colour Photography Tips

Anyone can take photos in colour, but taking colour portrait photographs outdoors that have that wow factor takes a few tricks. Awareness of the surrounding colours is crucial to getting that perfect shot, and those getting their portraits done should be made aware of their choice of colours with their clothing. Too many harsh colours can clash and cause a confusing photo, taking the attention away from the person or people in the shot.

Using Colour Outdoors for Portrait Photography in Spring

1. Choose One Dominant Colour

As mentioned before, too many bright and vivid colours in one picture can be distracting. Choosing one predominant colour scheme for the portrait can really make for an eye-catching images. By carefully selecting the viewpoint, and the way in which the image is framed, the result can be amazing.

2. Keep It Simple

One good general rule of thumb with outdoor portrait photography is to keep it simple, particularly when it comes to colour. A picture with too much detail will have significantly less impact than a portrait with only the critical elements of the scene. This is one reason why spring is perfect for outdoor colour portraits. Although the season brings many colours with it, there is simplicity in spring. Another trick is to use soft, pastel colours that are almost monochrome. These are great for portraiture.

3. Lighting

Lighting is key in portraiture and can mean the difference between a great portrait and a not-so great one. When shooting outdoor portraits, you may not always be in control of the type of lighting you’ll get, but there are ways to use the light to your advantage. Light is different depending on the time of day. Midday light tends to be much stronger than the soft light that comes with the early evening. Choosing what time of day to have your portraits done will have an effect on the colours as well. A soft light is more flattering than harsh light for the subject of the photograph.

It’s All About Perception

Colour is relative to other colours present, and these can be used to your advantage. The right balance of colour and light can not only make for a pretty picture, but can hide flaws such as blemishes and wrinkles and even make you look slimmer. Take advantage of the colour and light that spring brings and take your portrait sessions outdoors!

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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#005: How The Camera Lies To Us

Introduction: Margherita Gregory from Kiss Photography in Brisbane explains how cameras lie to us when we see photos of ourselves.

When it comes to pictures of ourselves it’s a really common response for the eye to be immediately drawn to the feature of ourselves that we dislike the most.

But the thing is that this perception of ourselves is distorted by the cameras we all have in our back pockets – phones!

What’s worse is that in the wrong hands these cameras will even exaggerate those things we don’t like, leaving us to believe that we really don’t look good in photos!

This is a total lie!

The camera does nothing to reveal your true beauty, unless of course we trick it otherwise :)

In this podcast I explain how to get the most from pictures of yourself and how to show off your best features, always.

Enjoy the podcast, hope it helps!

Talk soon, Margherita

Margherita Gregory Kiss Photography iTunes Podcast

Gift Idea: DIY Book Picture Frames

DIY Book Picture Frames

DIY Book Picture Frames

Many of us like a good DIY project now and again. It’s fun to do and is easy on the wallet. DIY also gives gift givers the chance to add a personal touch to almost any gift. To make DIY Book picture frames, you don’t need fancy tools or expensive materials. They’re super easy to make! If you’ve got a couple of photographs but no frames to display them in, worry not. With these tips, your photographs will be on display in no time.

Those old hardcover books sitting in the basement can be repurposed. Chances are these books have become subject to wear and tear over time, making them perfect to use as picture frames. This project will only take about 15 minutes and the best part is that the frame of the book stands up on its own. You can still read the book even when it’s playing host to a photograph.

What You’ll Need

Take the hardcover book you’d like to use. If you’re not willing to use any of the books you have lying around the house, there are many book stores that sell second hand books in every colour. You’re likely to come across one with a design you really like. Both solid colours and different prints will work well; just make sure the portrait is the star and not the frame. The larger the photo, the larger the book needs to be. You’ll also need the portrait you’d like to frame, a utility knife, a ruler, pen/ pencil or marker, masking tape and a plastic page protector.

Preserve Your Family Images Today

  • Once you have your book, open the front cover and centre the portrait on it. Use a marker, pen or pencil and the ruler to trace around the edges.
  • The plan is to cut 3 mm inside the lines you’ve just drawn. Using the utility knife and ruler, begin scoring at the 3 mm mark. It may take a few tries to get the knife through the cover, but it is better to take your time with this process. Remember to protect your work surface so that the knife does not scratch it. Propping the rest of the book up against a wall is a good way to get it out of the way.
  • Once the knife has made scores deep enough to clearly outline the edges on the other side of the cover, turn the book over and slice through the front of the cover a few times to complete the cuts. You should be able to easily pop the cut portion out of the book at
    this point. Don’t worry if there’s some fraying of the edges, the charm in this DIY picture frame lies in its imperfection.
  • Open up the front cover again and lay the page protector down, lining up one side just outside the line that was originally drawn. Mark the rest of the rectangle out on the page protector and trim just outside the lines you drew.
  • Now your portrait has a perfect-sized protector to slip into.
  • Place the protected portrait face down on the inside of the cover and secure it in place with masking tape along the short sides.
  • Flip the book over and voilà! You’re done.

Let Your Imagination Run Wild

The great thing about DIY picture frames is there isn’t necessarily a right or wrong way to do things. The whole point of DIY is to add your own personal touch. The sky is the limit when it comes to choosing what to display your memories in or on. Anything from old picture frames to old door frames, maps, newspapers, glass, chalkboard and everything in between can be used. Go wild!

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Portrait Photography – The Camera Lies To You

Portrait Photography Camera Lies affect how we see ourselves in photographs

As a people photographer I’ve noticed an issue that plagues so many of us, something that I want to share with you – portrait photography camera lies.

These days there are just hundreds of pictures of us all the time because everyone has a camera in their back pocket. What we find though is that we don’t really like how we look in the photographs, so we sort of feel awkward and we just go ooh yuck, yuck, yuck, yuck, we don’t like any of them.

I just want you to know that the camera is lying to us. There are limitations in these cameras that show us in the worst possible light, and lead you to believe that you’re not photogenic. But it’s not true. I wan to share with you five ways that the camera is making us look worse and not showing our true beauty.

And just by using these things in the reverse way we can workout how to look good in front of the camera and we will actually love the way we look in a picture.

The right posing for portraits you’ll love

An instant reaction that happens as soon as someone pulls out a camera, we feel awkward and we go oh no, not again, this is gonna be awful.

So we get all tense and a lot of people will do this. You just go oh, and you tense your shoulders and your neck, you’re double chinning it, and you’re looking awkward, you got fists. And then the first thing we have to do is go, ah, just breathe, just relax. Cause then you don’t have that double chin, have a little wiggle, relax, slightly lean forward, then the double chin goes. You’ll find the arms look better, and all of a sudden you’re going to take a better picture.

Imagine you want to hide your tummy or something like that, if you put a prop in front of you like a gate, or a table, or a chair, or even one of your kids, or your pet and then you’re leaning forward and you put your arms around them, then the arms look good, the neck looks great, the tummy is hidden.

Nothing to see here – all of a sudden you look great.

The right lens will make all the difference

The other thing that happens with a lot of snappy’s is that they’re using a wide angle lens. So a wide angle lens will make everything appear wider and rounder. There’s your problem there. If you’re on the side of a picture with a group, and you’re right on the edge, you’re gonna even appear wider.

So we want to use a zoom lens, we want to zoom in or zoom lens. The longer the lens, the flatter everything is and everything looks much more flattering. So, big bonus there.

The Right Lighting is vital

An alternative way to think about it as well is the lighting. What happens is we just take pictures wherever but we’re not thinking about where the light’s coming from.

If I’ve got a big window behind me and you’re standing in front of me, and I’m tense, and you’re using a wide angle lens, the camera’s trying to light my face, so it will go flash. So I’m going like this look at the flash, it’s not good, we will not like it. So if we slow down, stop, where’s the light coming from.

Over here, I’ve got a window over here and some light coming from the light here. If you face the light, get the person over there, all of a sudden the light’s wrapping around your whole face. The camera’s not trying to flash you, not trying to fill up a bad image. You’ve got a sparkle in the eyes because you’re looking at the light. Perfect, we don’t need to be flashed in an awkward way.

Then, once again you’re wiggling, you breathe, you slightly lean forward, you lean on something like that, the lights right, they’re using a long lens, Bob’s your uncle. All of a sudden, beautiful pictures.

The right timing will capture the real you

Another thing that we have to worry about is the timing, because they do take a long time to go click. If the person taking your photo can be quick about it, it will make all the difference.

But if you’re in the right lighting, you’re breathing and relaxing and they’re using a zoom lens, you’re going to feel better and they can take as much time as they like cause you’re wiggling and breathing and having fun.

Make sure you choose the right clothing

We should also consider the clothing. What we wear can make a big difference on how we like the pictures.

For example if you wear dark colours, dark colours recede in the pictures. They appear smaller. White colours make everything look larger. So black, see, smaller on the side. If you’re wearing lots of bright patterns and swirls and round shapes, it’s going to make your eyes draw to that place.

Let’s just say for example you don’t like your hips or something like that, if your wearing a bright coloured skirt, then your eyes will go straight to that spot and that will appear larger. So anything you wanna hide, put dark colours on it, plain colours and anything you want to appear larger, put lighter colours on.

You can see here what I’m wearing, I’m wearing a slight V-neck here. V-necks will make you appear thinner and taller. If you have a rounder face and you’re wearing a round top, it just accentuates that shape and you won’t like it. V-neck, straight pattern, no designs here.

Portrait Photography Camera Lies Affects Many People Making Them Uncomfortable

So your eyes, not even drawn to it. And here I’ve got the cardigan on the side, that makes me appear taller and thinner. It’s not really rocket science but those little things will make you appear like you really are. It will show off your true beauty in a photograph. We’re tricking the camera to show us how we really are and not how we don’t wanna appear.

In pictures our eyes are attracted to what we don’t like about ourselves..

And isn’t it the funniest thing, soon as you look at a picture of yourself, whatever it is you don’t like about yourself that’s the first thing you see. So unfortunately we’re all like that. I do it to, so I totally get it. But I just want you to know by following those little tricks, you will be able to feel beautiful and you can feel beautiful in front of a camera, and you can love your photographs.

I hope that helped. If you have any questions just feel free to get in touch. I’d love to hear from you. Have a great day.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Portrait Photography Hesitation: Why you don’t need retouching

Portrait Photography Hesitation: Why you don’t need retouching

Portrait Photography Hesitation is something many people experience.

Capturing moments in time. That’s what portrait photography is all about. However, when it comes to getting our pictures taken, many of us tend to be reluctant to get it done. We experience portrait photography hesitation. Perhaps we feel a bit old or aren’t too happy with our weight, blemishes, acne or other conditions we may be facing.

Portrait Photography Hesitation

Many people have not had good experiences in the past when getting their portraits done. This is mainly because of the wide angle cameras that are frequently used by our family when taking snap shots. These cameras make everything look wide. Another issue people face is that it usually takes such a long time for someone to take a picture of us that our smiles drop, we look awkward and the picture captured is not as flattering as we would like. This seems to convince us over time that we are not photogenic and that we need retouching. However, this is often not the case.

Let’s eliminate all the bad photography for a second. These are some of the methods I like to use to make sure the process is fun, quick, clients are happy with the end result and don’t feel the need to retouch.

Proper Lighting is Everything 

A skilled photographer will know in which light to place you so that any flaws you may have are instantly made invisible. I like to make sure the light wraps around your face so that it is not enhancing any wrinkles or blemishes. Placing clients out of direct sunlight is also a good way to hide any flaws. Open lighting is often the best way to go when it comes to portrait photography.

Using a Long Lens

Long lenses flatten and flatter everything so that you look beautiful.

The Right Clothes, Makeup and Poses

As a female photographer, I know how to dress clients in what is flattering for their body shape. The right pose also has the ability to hide flaws instantly.

Creating a Comfortable and Relaxed Environment

A good photographer knows how to make their clients feel relaxed and comfortable. I believe and have seen that a client who feels comfortable with their photographer takes better pictures because they are actually enjoying the process and feeling confident with themselves.

At our studio, my approach is to first eliminate 99 percent of the flaws by using the above methods. People are often surprised at what the right lighting, clothes, makeup and poses can do for their portraits.

If after all of this the client still feels like some things need to be fixed, that’s when we resort to retouching.

For example, I had a client who had Bell’s palsy, which means that one side of her face was dropped a little bit. Although it was a mild case, she knew it was there. We are all very critical of ourselves and tend to focus on flaws that we know are there but no one else can see. In this case, I had the images retouched, having her face lifted up slightly on the one side. She was thrilled with the final result of the images.

I had another client whose child had scars from chicken pox. The lady had been putting off getting her child’s portrait done, hoping the scars would disappear quickly. Well, they didn’t. So instead of missing out on capturing this moment in the child’s life, I took pictures of the child and had them sent for retouching to remove the scars. The final result was pleasing to everyone.

Portrait Photography Retouching

I believe that retouching should not be over-done. The client should still look like themselves when all is said and done. If someone is dealing with permanent issues that won’t go away, or if they feel like they have put on weight that they don’t want to show in the photo, touch-ups can always be done by using our retouching service. But simply retouching a photo that can be otherwise fixed with proper lighting, clothes and poses is not necessary.

Portrait photography is meant to capture moments in people’s lives, and I believe these moments should be as real as possible. With the right photographer, you may just discover that you are perfect the way you are. If you have been putting off a photography session for whatever reason, contact me and we can discuss the best way to work around any issues you may have.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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children's portrait photography

Picture this: you have been aching to set up a professional portrait photography session, but one or more of your children just lost a baby tooth and is now sporting a gap-tooth smile. Should you wait for the adult tooth to grow in, or do you capture the cute but gapped smile? Personally, I love taking pictures of children with missing baby teeth. Doing so allows me to photograph the precious moments of childhood that will be over before you know it! I feel the same way about braces, believing that they should be included in photos because they are an integral part of your child’s life at that moment. If you are still on the fence about moving forward with your session planning, see if I can convince you:

Capturing a Sweet Smile with Missing or Gapped Teeth

Children typically loose all of their baby teeth during their primary school years, gradually replacing them with permanent teeth between the ages of about six and twelve. Because of this, you should expect at least one of their yearly school pictures to feature a partially toothless grin! This is an adorable part of childhood that reflects their sweetness and innocence. Unfortunately, this time in their life will also pass quickly. Your child’s cute, goofy, or mischievous grin deserves to be captured on film so you can look back on it in the future.

The alternative is waiting to have professional portrait photography pictures until your child’s adult tooth grows in. However, the chances are that another baby tooth may have fallen out by the time a new adult tooth appears! Plus, if your child has siblings, visits from the tooth fairy will be a regular occurrence. Instead, embrace their uneven or silly-looking grins and cherish this time in their lives.

Feeling Comfortable with Braces in Pictures

Having braces can be a touchy subject, even though they are more common than ever before. Some kids feel self-conscious, and you might think that most parents would hesitate to book a portrait photography session during this time. In reality, lots of mums have told me over the years that they do want pictures of the braces! Many mums recognize that wearing braces is an important part of a child’s life and that the resulting images will become adorable keepsakes.

When it comes to high schoolers or adults who wear braces, the best thing to do during a shoot is to relax. Smiling naturally will look much better than trying to hide the braces. Doing that often results in a tight and awkward smile, not to mention the posture that comes from feeling uncomfortable about one’s appearance. Plus, you can always get updated images once the braces are off. In the meantime, however, there is no reason not to document and cherish this time and experience.

Finally, do not worry about any possible reflections or glares from the braces themselves. I am well versed in setting up shots so that there are no unwanted glares off of braces, glasses, or jewellery. The right lighting will keep every image looking great.

Celebrate Milestones and Make Fun Memories

Whether someone in your family has braces or is missing teeth, the image will be uniquely you, at that moment. You can look back on them and remember that time in your life, along with the fun experience of the session. You can also have extra, high-quality portraits printed to send to far-away family members who may miss out on these little milestones. I offer plenty of on-location advice and guidance to help everyone feel at ease. The portrait photography session will not be overly formal or complicated, and you will not have to perform or pretend to be having fun. In fact, I welcome and encourage kids and families to giggle, play, and have fun together during a sitting.

The more comfortable your family is, the easier it will be for me to capture your unique personalities, relationships, and bonds.

In addition, booking a session will help show your child that there is no reason to be ashamed of having braces or sporting a goofy grin. After all, no one else is really concerned about these things! If you waited until everyone family members teeth were perfect, you will miss their entire childhood. We can always take some non smiling relaxed images as well. Embrace all of the traits and features that make you “you,” and encourage your children to do the same. When you are ready, talk to me about booking a session. I cannot wait until you see the resulting portraits!

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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