Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Just something to think about.....

The following is the philosophy of Charles Schultz, the creator of the 'Peanuts' comic strip. You don't have to actually answer the questions. Just read the e-mail straight through, and you'll get the point.

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.
2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.
3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America.
4. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.
5. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winner for best actor and actress.
6. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners.
How did you do? The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday. These are no second-rate achievers. They are the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners . Here's another quiz.

See how you do on this one:

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.
2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.
3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.
4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.
5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with .
The lesson: The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care. Pass this on to those people who have made a difference in your life. 'Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia ' (Charles Schultz)
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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Been away for a bit I see again. I am not the best person to update this blog but I really do try. Time just gets away from me. So what I have been up too.....Well football is ALL over with (yippy) I have finished up Steph's Sr pics...took some more of Ryan and also Ashton. Then I had a great Friend from school call me and ask me to take pictures of her new bundle of joy...Olivia..well she had different plans then to get her pictures taken. She was awake until it was time to get her pretty little Christmas dress on. For the life of us we couldn't get her to wake up so we are going to retry again later this week. Just gives me and Kari another reason to catch up on what we have missed in each others lives for the last 19 yrs.....YES I SAID 19. Here is one of Olivia out like a light.

Friday, October 17, 2008

SR Pics

OK I have played enough with Steph and getting her pictures done. Here are some that I have taken over the last week or two. We are on the last week of Football so I will have a life again...Also we are moving back to Birch Run soon. I cant wait to go "HOME" again.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

OK After some LONG HEATED debates with my husband I think he is finally seeing the light into pricing..maybe. I was on a photo forum that I read on a reg. basis and these are prices from the local chain studios. I would hope people would see my love and passion for photography and understand why I charge the prices I do for portraits. Keep in mind also the chain studios are usually on a time limit of 20mins (i know i worked at one) in that 20 mins you take the pictures ...and SELL SELL SELL. I can say one thing for myself and any other pro photographer there is NO WAY I would only spend 20 mins on all that. Hope you have a great day.
20x24: 99.99
10x30, 3 image: $149
20x20, 9 image: $149

Picture people:
Individual color sheets (1 8x10, 2 5x7 or 8 wallets) $18
Color 16x20: $69;
$85 to personalize with text overlay
$5 per sheet extra for B&W
14x24 framed $149
14x14, 4 images framed $129
Kiddie Kandids: $19.99 color sheets
20x24: $109.99
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Friday, October 3, 2008

New Coat

I thought I had better come on here and show you guys what Floyd at Mid Michigan Screen Print did for me. He has asked me for action shots to hang in the store. He said he has asked the other photographers to do it but they never had. I went in and was looking for a coat that was warm waterproof and had some nice size pockets. Carrie showed me this one and I told her I couldnt get it right now....she talked to Floyd and here is what I got. THANK YOU MID-MICHIGAN SCREEN PRINTING.
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Friday, September 5, 2008

I DID IT!!!!

OK I am so excited tonight. We went to the football game and I was taking pictures of Cassie like I always do at half time. Tonight she did her 2 fire batons. I have been trying to catch the fire without it blurring...Well tonight I DID IT! I was so happy that I showed her mom that was right next to me. Its awsome to complete one thing you set out to do...yep it took me 4 yrs but I finally got it. Cassie is a SR this year and Im not sure what we are going to do when she leaves us. She is National Champ. I know I sure will miss her as Im sure everyone else here in our town will. OK enough jibber jaber here is My new fav picture from football this year.

Friday, August 22, 2008

What a great time I had yesterday. I had the pleasure of shooting the cheerleaders again. I took about 50 cheerleaders pictures. Lori was great. She had the girls all set for me and it went by quick. This is my niece and her freinds. They are in high school but Megen asked me to take her picture so I did. OK here is one since Megen is IMing me wanting to see.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Getting better..and busier

OK I am so happy that Lori from the Chesaning Youth Cheerleading called me and told me they would really love for me to come take the pictures of the squad again this year. It made my day. I have been feeling kinda in a rut since the wedding in July. Maybe its just cause I have no more weddings on the books for the year. All in time thou. I have submitted my price list to ALL 6 football coach's here in our town so we will just have to see what happens with that. Also I was asked to take video of all the teams home games. Also Al will have permission to be on the field taking action shots and people can order them from me. So its finally paying off for the last 4 yrs. of shooting pretty much for free for my sons team. Other then all that I have been working on the wedding pictures from July. I just havent been able to do alot but now that I am not on any meds or crutchs I will get back to myself. I ususally have a wedding done within 48 hours. We started football/cheerleading for the twins so I am at the field 5 nights a week for 2 hours a night, but this is my FAV sport that my children play. So you may here me say I wish it was over but I really dont mean it. :) No new pics right now thou sorry. I will get back in the swing of things soon.


OK I lied here is one of Mike in his 1st week of football. Can you find him???
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OK its been a little crazy again here. On Monday we started football/cheerleading. This is my fav. time of the year. I found out no surgery is needed on my knee and the DR said just to take it easy....PLEASE no time for me to take it easy. I am still working on the wedding pictures from the last wedding. I wasnt able to do a hole lot to them but working on them more this week and will have them done this weekend. Speaking of this weekend its the last weekend for softball for Al. I got a call to take the Chesaning Youth Cheerleaders again this year. I LOVE THOSE GIRLS. Lori, the lady in charge is awesome as well. I look forward to taking these pictures every year. They have grown with me and its great to see them every year. I also passed out my price lists to all the PFY coach's tonight so we will see. It would be great to get our hometown team also. I am in charge this year of the video taping at all our home games for our youth league and Al will be taking the action shots.
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Friday, August 1, 2008


OK So its been a little crazy here. The twins are done with baseball/softball. Al and Joe are still playing. I have been really busy ...well til the 25th I was. That week I had pictures for my grandsons 1st birthday, my daughters softball team, a wedding and then a shoot for my most faithful family The Burkes. Well everything was going fine until the wedding. It was just a reception as the couple had gotten married in Vegas. The day was going great got all the photos done at that park and then off to the reception hall. It was awesome how they had it set up. Since the couple got married in vegas they had the vegas theme. Everything went well until it was time to cut the cake. The bride and groom had their drinks sitting next to the cake and when they grabbed the knife to cut the cake they spilled them. I went to grab the glasses and fell right on my left knee. It wasnt pretty. I finished the cake pictures and went and sat down. As Im sitting there my knee is just getting bigger and bigger. Well I took a few more pictures and then I left. Got home iced it and put it up. On saturday I had to take Cassie Burkes pictures so off I went. Then Al and I went to some freinds house for a dinner. The whole time me limping around. OK got home from all that and iced and put it up again. Got up Sunday and couldnt walk on it without it KILLIN me. Told Al if its not better I want to go to the ER. Well I gave it til about 8 pm and it wasnt any better told Al its time to take me in. We went to ER they took xrays they didnt see anything broken. They said if its not better in a couple days call to set up an MRI. OK here it is Wed not any better so I call the Dr and she wants to see me. Go to the Dr on thursday and she says stay on crutches and keep the brace. Not what I wanted to hear and then Tues. I have an MRI on my left knee to see if meniscus is torn. I had surg. in 1998 for the same thing on the same knee. So here I sit and done with most of the edits to ALL the shoots I did last week. So when someone tells you that photography isnt a dangerous job Im here to tell you ....... IT IS :) I will leave you with some pictures from Josh and Bridgets wedding. Thanks for reading my blog.
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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Why does it cost so much???

Digital technology is brilliant. The digital revolution has brought amazing flexibility and amazing amounts of control for the photographer, the hobbyist, the professional, the amateur. With flexibility comes a price though. Camera equipment is still considerably more expensive when you factor in its’ lifespan, the need for additional resources for processing those images, the time it takes to get a usable image and the effort that goes into all of this.
Even though you pay $1.99 for a print at your local drugstore and paying for film is pretty much a thing of the past (although you still pay for memory) you may be wondering why you may pay upwards of $40, 50, 70, 90 for a custom photography print. Some photographers hear this statement every once in awhile:
"How in the world can you charge $60 for an 8×10 if it costs me less than $2 to print at the local drug store?"
The answer is multifaceted and has a lot to do with the time, aforementioned equipment costs, artistic vision and reputation of the photographer, expertise and the usual costs of running a legitimate business.

Approaching it from a time standpoint, for instance let’s imagine if you will that you have hired a photographer who has work that you love and that is travelling an hour to your on location session. TIme break down:
session prep time (30 mins - 1 hour, includes equipment and back up equipment checks + vehicle checks)
one hour travel time TO session
15-30 minutes prep time at client’s home
90 minutes-2 hours with client photographing subject
one hour travel time FROM session
30-45 minutes uploading time from digital cards from camera to computer
30-45 minutes time spent backing up the original images
2-5 hours editing time to present you with a diverse gallery of edited images
1 hour prep time getting ready for ordering
2-3 hours time with client for ordering images
1 hour sorting through and checking order
30 minutes-1 hour prep time for delivery
30 minutes-1 hour getting order shipped
any additional phone time or time needed for add on ordering, shipment issues, quality issues
As you can see, average client time for a session ranges from just under 13 hours to 19 hours dependent on the photographer’s level of service. This is time dedicated only to your session. When the photographer charges $150-$300 for the photo shoot you are not just paying for the two hours of session time, you are paying the photographer for 12-19 hours complete time for your session.

Regarding equipment costs, a good quality professional camera with a selection of good optical quality lenses and digital storage mediums and computer set up can run from $10,000-$30,000 costs dependent on the photographer. Even though you can purchase a really good quality digital SLR for about $2100 there are still other costs related to photography. A good lens for portrait photography can run up $900 to $2500. A dependable computer system with software loaded for business and creative usage can run $2500 to $8000 dependent on the photographer.
Then come lab costs for specialty products. A good photographer knows the lab is integral to their success. Photography labs dedicated to the professional photographer often cost more and offer a range of products that allows the custom photographer to continually offer new, innovative products for you, the discerning client.
Discussion other costs of running a photography business could take awhile so we’ll skip the intricate details. There is of course much more: including costs of running the business, taxes, studio rental/mortgage if the photographer has ownership of a dedicated studio, vehicular costs, costs of advertising/marketing, costs of sample pieces that the photographer will likely bring to your session, etc.

Often times clients will mention to their photographer that X studio in the mall/department store only charges $25 for an 8×10 or they may mention other things related to discount photography chains. The fact is those discount chains make their money on volume, not on customized 1:1 service. According to several articles at the time, did you know that in February 2007 a rather well known discount department store that started in Arkansas closed down 500 of their portrait studios across the nation? The reason is simple, you cannot make money on 99¢ "professional" prints if you do not sell enough of them. Interestingly enough - those same studios that offer the loss leader packages often charge much much more for their a la carte pricing (as high as $40-50 for an 8×10). The whole reason the big department stores began offering portrait studios in the first place was to get you, the savvy consumer, in through their door so that you could spend more money with them in other departments. Your "PORTRAITS" are considered the true "loss leader".
Going to a chain studio, as a consumer, you don’t have the benefit of 1:1 attention for 2 hours at your home where your child is allowed to explore, play and be comfortable in their home environment, nor do you get the experience that many custom photographers are known for or the lovely captures of natural expressions. You simply get a bare bones, "SAY CHEESE" experience. Keep this in mind when selecting a photographer.

Being in demand, being well known for quality work, having a good reputation often costs time on the photographer’s part. Their expertise comes at a cost, their time learning their craft and learning the intricacies of lighting and the commitment put forth on their end to create a persona about their business that oozes professionalism. A great number of photographers go a very long time from the time that they purchase their first good camera to making money at the business of photography. Many photographers, when first starting out, rush in thinking that the business will be easily profitable in no time, how expensive could it be to get a camera and use it to create their dream? They often neglect to factor in the cost of business, the cost of equipment, software, back ups, etc..
Being of sound reputation, a better professional photographer knows that they must always reinvest in their business to create the reputation of being top notch. To create good work good equipment, reliable equipment, back up equipment is a necessity. The photographer who desires to be known as better/best/unparalelled reputation-wise knows that the most important thing they can do for their business is reliability and dependability. This is how reputations get built. Good work often is a wonderful side product of building that good reputation.
I hope this (lengthy) article helps shed some light on WHY a custom photographer is a better choice for your family’s memories. The photographs that are produced as a result of the professionalism and dedication that your photographer has will be cherished for a lifetime (or more) and great thought and consideration should be placed into hiring who is right for your family’s most precious investment.
content is inspired by discussions with other photographers, my own personal experiences as well as a well an outline based on an article by San Diego Photographers Caught On Film Photography
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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

OK I cant leave it alone with just one picture of the wedding. This wedding was so beautiful.
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Jacob & Laura Bennett

This weekend was a BLAST! Our family went to Ohio for a WONDERFUL wedding with a WONDERFUL couple. I have knowen Jacob for about 13 yrs now. Jake and I always got into trouble a few time with his dad (our pastor) but we still had fun! Now we have Laura to get into trouble with us. :) Congrats to the new couple and here is one of many of my fav. poses.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

OK We are almost done with one of the sports nuts at our house. Mike has a few more games and he is done. Not too good this year but like I have told him you have to know how to loose before you can really enjoy winning. Amanda started her games last week. Now on Tues. she plays doubleheaders. They lost the 1st game by one run and won the 2nd by a landslide. The others that are playing ball in the house still havent won a game yet either. So Amanda is the only one that has one game this year. WTG MANDA. Other then ball I have been doing the church directory and its just about done...just in time to go to Ohio for a wedding at the end of this month. WWOOOHHHOOO cant wait. Well thats about all that is going on here right now.
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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

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Hello again its been a LONG time but its baseball/softball season and this is my busiest time of the year. This year I have 4 out of 5 family members playing ball. I dont play ball....someone has to take the pictures...:) This is Manda and Mikes 2nd yr and then Al and Joe started playing on our church softball team. Everyone plays on Mondays and the kids also play on wed. I have been taking family pictures for our church directory and think I have one more family and I am DONE. There will be 63 families total this time in the book. Alot more since I have been doing them for 3 weekends now. Since the last post I have took some pictures of my daughter Stephine from prom and had my grandson here while his mom had surg. on her arm. Kayla is doing alot better but not back to normal (whatever that is) I know how hard it is to take care of a baby...but not with a broken arm. Loved having Nicholas here and cant wait til I get him back to take some more "real" pictures of him. On June 9th I will be taking Mikes baseball team pics so now Im in a rush to get the family pictures done. I just wish my business would really start. We are going to Ohio for the weekend of June 27th to take pictures at Jacob and Lauras' wedding. Not a paid wedding but just to leave state with the kids its going to be fun. Kinda like a mini vacation since we havent taken one in 2 yrs. Im hoping to take some of Steph's SR pics soon too. I cant believe she will be a SR next fall. All my kids are growing up too fast. But as a mom I have to let them make mistakes on their own and then tell them how to fix/get over them. I so want to move back to Birch Run that way I can really get my business going. I try but its so hard to charge the ppl I call freinds but if I want anymore photography things I will have to start charging. :( One of these days I will have all 5 of my kids here for pictures and also Nicholas. OK thats about all I have time to type right now. I am hoping to get better about this whole blog thing but first I have to meber that I started it and need to update it. My dry erase board is getting full with a things to do list....OK bye for now and thanks for reading my blog.


Friday, April 18, 2008

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Wow where does time go? I havent been on here since March...well the twins are starting ball and I have been trying to learn more about photography. Everyone thinks this is the easiest thing in the world to do but they dont stop and really pay attention to alot of the deatils that go into knowing how/what you are supose to do with a camera. I started out with a Point and Shoot and now I have the Canon Rebel XT SLR camera. I have 3 lens, 2 i got for christmas and havent used alot. I started shooting action shots this last week...boy did I miss taking them. Well today Al and I have been together for 17 yrs. WOW thats a long time and we havent killed each other yet..Notice that word YET? lol OK off to get ready to go out to dinner with Al. Have a great weekend, the weather has finally broke and its super nice out today.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

OMG I feel really stupid right now. I see I havent posted on here since March 10th. Where has the time went? This week the kids are home for spring break. I really havent been shooting anything for the last 2 weeks. I have been trying some things that I have never done before. I have been using my camera on FULL manual. That means I have to focus and everything on my own. Usually I just let the camera do it but thought I had better try it so I can learn more. I also have been doing a little playing in photoshop. Im sure its nothing big for alot of ppl but I have been playing with curves and levels. Something else I have never done, and I am seeing some great things come from it. My pictures are in my eyes they look alot better then before. I also seen on one of the forums I visit about using a gift bag as a photo tent. So I tried it and the flowers that are posted here are what I came up with. I did do a curves adjustment and a crop also. Other then my little plays I have been reading alot about how to build a website....UGH I am so ready to pull my hair out its not funny. Also our church has set up the dates for the pictures for a new church directory. So thats another thing I have been researching and learning alot. OK thats about all I can think of right now....Til next time hope it wont be 2 weeks again

Monday, March 10, 2008

Wow where did the time go?? Oh I rember now...we moved. Not where I want yet but we will get there someday. It has been a busy few weeks. We got all moved and my internet thought it needed a break I guess. I was without internet for almost a week. I thought I was going to die :) but Im here now. I shot a wedding over the weekend just for fun. I know call me nuts but thats what I did. Not sure what to think of the pictures yet, because on Friday Al got me a new 20" flatpanel wide screen montior and Im having issues with the color. On here it looks so blowen out but yet when they are printed they are too dark. I will be working on getting that all fixed this week I hope. Other then all that this week seems to be pretty mello as of right now anyway. OK thats about all I can think of right now since its almost midnight and I am about to fall out of the chair from being so sleepy. OK I will share one of the wedding photos. Please let me know if it looks ok.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Made it thru another weekend

OK the weekend is over, back to running the roads again. Its ok thou that is what a mom is supose to do right? Im kinda excited for the 8th to get here. I am shooting a wedding just because I want to try my new lens I got for christmas at a wedding and really wouldnt use them if it i was a paid wedding. No presure at all so this is going to be just for fun. It as at our church so I already know the lighting in there...which is not the best for photo's but i will work with it just like I have in the past taking other pictures in there. I have been trying to use manual on my lens and camera lately. Its going ok some of the shots have been blurry but this is something you cant learn over night. I know some other "pro photographers" that never take the camera off auto. Well I feel as if they are cheating themselves out of the challenges photography is. I have been reading alot on how to do different things again and have no one to try them out on. The twins wont sit anymore for pictures and Lord knows Al never would. I got a new backdrop and so bad wanted to use it I told the twins I would take them out to eat if they would just sit for a little while and they still said no. So one of my freinds came over last weekend and yup you guessed it I had her sit so I could play. :) I know Im evil :) Here is one that I took and then did differnet things in photoshop to it. OK before I make whoever is reading this fall asleep this will be all today...maybe for the week we will just have to see.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008


OK I am not one to talk about myself but here goes....... I am a full time stay at home mom of 11 yr old twins, Amanda and Michael. I also have three older children. Kayla is 20 and has gave me my 1st grandchild Nicholas. He was born Aug. 5th, 2007. Then we have Al II, he is going to college for Criminal Justice at Saginaw Valley State University. Stephine is a junior in high school, she is pretty good kid for the most part. She has been in Chior since the 6th grade and also on the Color Guard Team for the school. Al and I have been married for 10 yrs now..where does the time go? I have always been interested in photography and officially started a business in Dec 2005. I havent really pushed it too much but I have done several weddings and TONS of kids/family pictures. I would like to someday have my own studio and take photographs on more of a reg. basis. I have taken a few classes on photography but for the most part have been self taught. I have lived in Michigan for my whole life, pretty much in the same town as I grew up in. The twins keep me very busy. Amanda plays softball and cheers during football season. Michael has played football for 4 yrs now. Yes we start them out young here. Michael has also done Basketball and Baseball. But if you ask him his favorite is football. I have for the last 4 yrs took action shots at every one of their games. Also have done team pictures last year for Michaels football team and Amanda's softball team. Also the last 2 yrs I have taken the Chesaning Youth Cheerleaders pictures. I sometimes think thats is what I am supose to do is just sports but yet I really LOVE to do weddings. Really anytime I have my camera in hand I love it. My saying is "Looking thru a lens is sometimes better then the real world" you can make it your own world when taking photographs. Our family loves to go camping and tubing on the river when we have time. Which is not too often anymore with all the sports but hey thats ok with us too. Anything else you wish to know feel free to leave me a message and I will try to answer it for you.