Thursday, July 29, 2010

My Son, Gabe :)

Okay---give it to me straight!  How did I do?  What should I do differently?  What did I miss?  Any constructive thoughts or ideas?  
Thank you SO much!
~Bethany :)

*P.S.  FYI - My husband put the watermark on there...but we really don't have much of a site yet :)


  1. WOO-HOO Lady! You are doing FAB! I'm in the middle of a project but I'll try to look with a more critical eye tomorrow - but I wanted to tell you that I'm so proud of you!


  2. Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!!! They look really professional! Like a real photo journalist! We can be our own worst critic! I encourage to keep taking more pictures!!! If you give your gifts back to God he will bless it!!! Awesome!!! I am proud of you if no one else tells you!!!!

  3. First and foremost, I think you did a great job! Gabe is quite a cutie, and your photos are great!

    Now, you asked for constructive criticism, but I really think your shots are great! How about I just tell you what I do when I do a shoot like that? Now, I'm as amateur as they come... I'm still very much so learning, but this is what I've picked up and what I've found works for me. The more you do this, the more you'll find what works for you, and what you like and don't!

    (btw.... I LOVE your sunflare shot.....nice!)

    I'm not sure what time of day this was, but I've found that, where I live, photoshoots outside between, lets say noon - 2:30, are a nightmare! The lighting is super harsh, and nearly anything done in shade is severely backlit by the harsh lighting. Often, if I have to shoot that time of day, I'll use my flash to put more even lighting on the faces of my subject. Then again, it depends on what I'm going for. I do that for portraits. If I'm just shooting for fun and being artsy, I love shadows and the depth and interest they can bring to a photo.

    Also when I'm shooting kids, I'll talk to them the whole time. I'm a talker to begin with though! If I can get them talking about things they like.... things that make them happy, they tend to get a beautiful, natural smile on their face. I rarely tell kids to smile, as I just get a squinty eyed, forced cheese out of them most of the time! The more natural photos are my favorites!

    I love how you got photos of him picking up those seeds, and then showing them off. I often use kid's natural curiosity about things to aid in getting photos. I'll get right down on the ground and capture the moment. My husband jokes that my knees and shirts are usually more dirty than the kids when I get home from shooting! (I highly recommend black/brown shits!)

    Anyway, I think you did wonderfully. His little personality really comes through, and I think that's so important in photos. I remember once as a kid, my Grandmother went and had portraits done of herself for church. I remember looking at them, and thinking she looked stern. While the photos were photographically great, they totally missed capturing the person the photos were of! My Grandmother is still, to this day, an amazing, fun loving, kind and gentle soul! Not a stern or harsh bone in that woman's body! lol

    Anyway, I'm exhausted... just saw my husband off for work, and I'm gonna catch a little more sleep before I have to get the kids up! Again, wonderful job! I'm so proud of you!

  4. These are beautiful! I have to say that I like the ones that aren't posed the best. I also LOVE the sunflare shot, the shoes and the seeds. Nice work!

  5. Well, first off, I think they are beautiful photos. I am not an expert by any means...just figuring it all out myself. But, maybe one thing I'd mention is to pay attention to where he is in the frame, and what surrounds him. For example, the sixth photo from the bottom is wonderful, but would be better if the tree branch wasn't coming out of his head. One of my favorites is just the bottom of his legs and his shoes. I love the position of his feet, the way you framed it, everything. It's great.

  6. I really appreciate everyone's helps so much to have an outsider's perspective!

    I wanted to get pics of Gabe playing...but I also wanted a few mug shots, just so I have them. Those look pretty fakey though--lol!
    I tried to get some how he stands sometimes, and how he loves to RUN.

    I'm excited! I need to practice more!
    Thank you again--feel free to post any time :)

  7. Lindsay---thanks for the pointers!
    I did ask Gabe to 'smile' and that is where most of those cheesy fake grins came from! I was scared I wouldn't get good ones just by him playing. He is one of those 'thinker' kids and he's either very serious or extremely goofy!
    We were out taking these at dusk. I liked the lighting, but I had to make sure I was in the right places. I took some under a tree that didn't turn out at all...very shadow-y.
    I am going to do a shoot with a couple kids this week...I'm so excited! A little nervous too bec I want to make sure I get good angles, light, etc!
    Have a great weekend!

  8. I know the feeling! I'm doing a shoot this week with......30+ people.

    It's a family portrait..... then a bunch of smaller ones of just the Grandkids, etc...

    This will be the largest group I've done.

    Other photographers may not agree with me on this one, but when I'm taking photos of kids, and they are giving me cheesy, forced smiles.... I'll switch my camera from the viewfinder to the lcd screen. This way, I can hold the camera lower, and make eye contact with them. It helps them start talking to me and getting excited about what they are saying. It also tends to make the shyer, more quiet kids less nervous.

    For example, when I shot these recently of my neighbor's kids

    The little girl in the photo is very shy. In the color photo where she's smiling, we were talking about her brother being goofy....I asked her if he's this silly at home, or if he saves it all for the camera. :)

    In the following black and white ones of her, on the first one I asked her if I had a bug on my lens. She wasn't giving me the look I wanted, so I said, "Oh, did it just fly off over my shoulder?" She looked up, over my shoulder, I took the shot. For the next one, I asked her how many stamens were in the flower she was She looks thoughtful, but in reality, she's counting.

    The dog one was by request of the kiddos.... said it wouldn't be a family photo without him! He was, really, less than amused, but I managed to get a few really good ones with him!

    As for the shots in the shade being shadowy, what are you setting the shutter speed to? How about the ISO? If I need more light, and I can't spare any shutter speed (anything under 100-125 blurs movement), I'll up the ISO and make sure my aperture is wide open. If I have to, I'll denoise the photo in post production as my camera tends to be pretty noisy with the ISO above 200.

    Ug, ok, I'm tired I need sleep. Birthday party tomorrow....I may need LOTS of sleep after this!