Table Mountain Spring Mommy and Me // Red Bluff Family Photographer

Throwback time!  This was a model shoot that I shot last spring at Table Mountain.  Table Mountain had been on my "bucket list" for years and I just could never make it happen.  Last spring a group of local photogs decided we needed to make the shoot happen.  We recruited 5 of us and had two of them model in between shooting.  We all brought our kids and let them run around also.  Things I really enjoy about these meet ups: they are FREE, we always LEARN from each other, and our kids keep each other occupied!!!  Oh and we always get great images to exchange.  I had just gotten my new camera body at this shoot and was all sorts of crazy trying to figure out the buttons, I forgot to grab a charged battery,  and I was like four months pregnant, not the easiest way to shoot, lol.  I was able to manage getting some gorgeous photos though.  We walked out for awhile until we found this group of trees filtering the light and this little stream (or puddle)  with these little wildflowers growing.  If you have not heard of Table Mountain, you should really try and visit in spring.  It is in the Oroville, Ca area and it is public land full of rolling hills and wildflowers for miles.  We to photographed each other for a couple hours and visited and chased kids, it was a super fun afternoon.  I did not edit many images until recently, I loved them, but I just did not feel like my skill set for photoshop was right at the time.  I visited them recently and decided I needed to share.  This mommy of FOUR snuggling on her sweet babe melts my heart!  I will be offering more of this style session closer to the Red Bluff, Ca area this spring so watch for details.  :)

 

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Family Snow Session at Lassen // Red Bluff Family Photographer

I love the winter.  I started offering snow sessions a few years ago during December.  It started as a way to continue shooting even when the weather was rainy here in the valley, but has turned into something my clients wait for!  Although I would love to share every image from the snow sessions I just can't, not enough time in the day.  So I will share a few highlights as I can, you can also check more out on my Facebook page.  These beautiful people are some of my family. The cool part about this family is the oldest and my oldest are only 3 months apart.  They get along so well when our busy lives let us get them together.  I always love working with this family because they are willing to try anything or go anywhere to adventure.  The love they have for each other shines through in these images, which is my most favorite thing to capture.  We had to drive up a little farther into the mountains to get snow as it has not been as stormy in the valley this year, but I think you can agree it was well worth it.  The light was coming through the trees so perfectly that day, and it helped that it made it a little "warm" in the sun also, the shade was FREEZING.  This season has really got me back into photographing families and I hope to keep up this momentum throughout 2018.  I have some super fun annual themed mini sessions coming up as well.  I am feeling pumped!  

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Dance Session // Red Bluff Child Portraiture

This is the second time I have worked with this adorable princess.  The first time was my horse mini sessions last fall.  Which I will be doing in the spring 2018 by the way...  I had shared a big fancy dress on my Facebook page and had posted that someone needed to rent it, kinda joking, kinda serious.  Her mom was totally on board and booked the session and rented the gown!!  EEEEEEEK!  Fast forward to earlier this month.  We originally had planned a snow session and mom wanted to feature this little's dance moves.  One of the things I love is when clients come to me with a specific idea they want to use for their session, then I can bring out the art side based on those ideas.  Well again, snow was minimal and we decided to shoot the session here in Red Bluff instead.  The Sacramento Discovery Center has this cool little bridge on one of the walking trails and I thought it would be the perfect touch for her dance poses, kind of like a dance bar?  Mom again rented two amazing dresses from the vendor I had shared.  The day was very bright and the leaves were all yellow, the dresses were a great light pallet so I went with a nice airy edit to keep it all cohesive.  This girl's smile just makes me smile, she got right out there and posed her heart out, smiling away the whole time.  She was so willing to go with all the ideas mom and I had come up with and seemed to really enjoy are time playing around and being in front of my camera.  It has been such a dry fall and winter so far it has allowed for a lot of time to shoot sessions.  Fall is great for family sessions, but also for portraits of children.  The weather is cool and the colors are like no other time of year.  Another great thing about this location, that I look for when choosing locations is safety.  There are people out walking through the area, but it is away from any streets and there are lots of trees around which provide great open shade for portrait lighting.  When working with kids I always try and think of the safest areas so the kids can have room to move around and relax without causing stress to myself or parents.  Obviously the older the kiddos get the more they take direction and are great staying in a small area, but this location has room to run if we need it!  Happy Friday all, please leave me some love or a question if you have it! <3 Amy

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Mountain Maternity Session // Red Bluff Maternity Photographer

So this time the last few years has been so rainy in the valley that I have been begging clients to go up to the snow with me for sessions.  Luckily Mineral is only 45 minutes east of Red Bluff and the snow level reaches there fairly early in the season.  I asked on social media if anyone was interested and got quite a lot of interest.  The forecast showed snow of the whole first weekend in December and I was getting giddy.  Well it was short lived, as the weekend grew closer the snow was only forecast for Saturday evening and a bit during the night.  I had one client that shared with me this area was where she and her husband had gotten engaged and they wanted a session regardless of the snow level.  We headed up Sunday evening and there was just about an inch of snow on the ground.  Just enough to make it feel like winter, and I mean it really felt freezing.  My beautiful client jumps out of her truck in a tank top!  first of all, she looked gorgeous, secondly I was cold just looking at her!  She then asked if it was ok to have her dog in a few shots with them, uh yes please!  What I love about going up to the Lassen area is there are so many perfect places right off the sides of the roads.  The light is so soft most of the day because of all the tall pine trees surrounding the area.  We were able to get to many great shots within a thirty minute time frame, and I even caught a great shot of just her pup.  I want to start offering forest sessions in every season, so if you're interested please contact me for more info!  Now I'll leave you to check out these gorgeous photos.  Please leave me some love in the form of a comment or a share on social media!  <3 Amy

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Family Portrait Session at Gover Ranch // Red Bluff and Redding Family Photographer

I have known this family for years, maybe ten?  They were my first family session when I first started out over 6 years ago!  You can check out a then and now on my Facebook page.  When they contacted me to photograph them again I was ecstatic to say the least.  Mom loved the workshop photos I had recently taken in Chico.  So I knew Gover Ranch would be the perfect location.  The venue is in Anderson which worked great because I am located in Red Bluff and the client is from Redding.  I had rented the venue for the day to photograph a few families and I invited them to come along.  I was so nervous that the weather was going to be bad as I watched the forecast but at the last minute the rain turned into just overcast!  I love a good sunset, but we can work with overcast too.  We were able to capture a lot of different poses, I even tried some new ones with them.  Gover Ranch has so many options I feel like every session I do there looks totally different. Our session date was just as all the leaves had changed and were starting to fall.  The trees were still full, but gorgeous yellows and reds.  The best is when a family comes looking gorgeous and ready to have fun!  They brought along an outfit change, and I have to say the light pink looked so good with the dark background.  It was a combo I had never thought to use together!  They also brought Grandma along so we had her in some family shots also.  I have to admit I was a little nervous to work with a family after so long, would I live up to my newest work?  Love the photos as much as the first time, with my growing talent?  I have to say I did!  Please take a look and leave me a little love in the comment section.  <3 Amy

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Large Family Session // Red Bluff Family Photographer

So when I was chatting with Mom about her family photos she was very hesitant on what to wear, I told her I would help!  I generally try to come up with clothing and location options that blend well together, I mean, we pick one and it inspires the other.  I love jewel tones, I'm sure I've told every client this!  Deep rich colors, and neutrals, all about the neutrals.  We discussed outfit options and I decided to shoot at one of my favorite locations, the manzanitas!  I love how rich they photograph.  The leaves are a deep green that could almost have a hint of blue and the stems are such a perfect maroon for fall.  We decided this would compliment the clothing options we were building.  The day of the session came and I felt like her oldest daughter seemed familiar to me, but I couldn't place it.  Turns out one of their middle daughters played soccer with my oldest daughter and their oldest coached my oldest in cheerleading years ago.  I had even photographed her oldest years ago when I did cheer photos!  Also, totally unrelated, Dad made a joke about Back to the Future, which is one of my all time favorite movies!  Needless to say we hit it off.  I know how stressful it is to plan a session, get all the outfits, get the kids there, get there on time....Mom had gone shopping a few times for clothes and brought options with her just in case.  Once we got going everyone had a great time.  Family sessions are always hectic, but it really is the best kind of hectic.  I love everyone showing their personalities and capturing the love everyone has for each other.  At the very end of the shoot Mom and Dad asked if I would take a photo of them with the hills and mountains in the background, I had never thought to try that at this location, if you scroll to the bottom you will see how gorgeous it turned out!  This was one of my favorite family sessions to date.  I really would love to work with more large families!  Do you have three, four, five, six kids?  Bring them to me and let's create magic!  

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Rockers downtown // Red Bluff child and family photographer

So while I was browsing Zulily, it's like a daily thing for me lol, I came across these rocker shirts.  I had been wanting to shoot some more urban style images and I decided these would be perfect for this shoot I was styling.  I had been chatting with these kids' mom for a bit about a session so I shot her a message with a link the the clothes.  She loved them!  We decided that they would be a perfect fit for the look we were going for.  Mom picked up a couple other pieces to compliment the main idea of the session and we ran with it.  I drove around town searching for the "right" location.  I had shot on Main street in Red Bluff a few weeks before and new that was not the look I wanted for this.  Then I came across this gem.  I love love love skull and crossbones, always have.  The area was low traffic, which I always consider when working with kids, and the streets were nice and wide and had some other cool buildings in the area if we decided to go walking.  Sold.  Now the day came for the session, it was storming and on the verge of raining, insert my pouty whine here.  We had been waiting for this day for like months, and neither of us wanted to gamble that the weather would get better anytime before spring.  We decided just to roll with it.  A little dark and gloomy and windy may set the tone, and I think it ended up working out awesome.  Siblings can be challenging to shoot, but these kids were troopers, giggling and did not mind getting all cuddled up, maybe it was cuz it was cold?  Anyway we took all these images within one block on on side of the street.  You don't need to big open field or park somewhere to take photos, just a small patch of somewhere pretty.

As always please leave me some love in the form of like/comment/share! <3 Amy

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My middle child // Red Bluff Family and Child Photographer

As promised, a few from this session, and an idea for you photographers wanting a little project!  Firstly lay eyes on that adorable giggle.  Intoxicating, right?  I love photographing Nina, my middle child, because she is full of surprises every time!  My friend Cassie of C. Wolverton Photography ordered this awesome flower crown from the Floranthropist in Redding, Ca this last week.  She took photos of her daughter which you can see on her Facebook page here and then asked if I would like to try it out also.  How fun, right?  We met up on a freeway exit half way between Red Bluff and Anderson for the exchange, at that point last week the storm was rolling in.  We stood there and talked about some other shoot ideas and as we watched the storm clouds it started to sprinkle.  The sun was still peeking through a bit and it was getting low in the sky, my heart was giddy!  So I raced home and asked Nina if she would throw on the sweater I was wearing for 4 shots/poses for me.  Any momtog knows you have to limit or bribe per shot with our kids lol.  I wanted a blanket, relaxed, fall type feel to contrast the formalness (is that a word!?) of the flower crown.  I honestly don't remember what we were talking about at this moment, I wish I did!

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So now to the project idea.  After I photographed Nina in the crown I passed it on to my good friend Jeny Crews to try out!  The best part is seeing how different everyone's images are using THE SAME PROP!  Just like when we host shootouts (you can join our Facebook group here) everyone's images are so different taking THE SAME SHOT!  I learn every time.  I love community over competition.  My plan is to order another crown during January and pass it through as many photographers as I can to see all the different takes on the same prop.  If you want to get in on the fun just come join our Facebook group.  Or if you want to start you own that would be awesome too, tag me on social media so I can see!  I want to share a few more portraits of Nina from the same shoot.  We shot for about 10 minutes total, I took about 30 images and these are my favorites.  

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As always feel free to leave some love at the bottom in the form of likes or comments, questions ok too!  <3 Amy

As always feel free to leave some love at the bottom in the form of likes or comments, questions ok too! 

<3 Amy

Family Session in Red Bluff // Red Bluff, Ca child and family photographer

There is its folks!  The coveted "everyone looking at the camera" photo!  Total WIN for mom, dad, AND the photographer!  But what comes next (besides ordering christmas cards)?  What can you follow this up with?  I am pretty good with posing multiple family members together, or poses within family members.  What I've been working on is the natural interaction, and capturing it beautifully.  This takes just as much work!  Learning prompts, ways to keep parents relaxed, even when kids are being wild.  Let me tell you this.  I LOVE WILD.  Have you seen photos of my middle daughter Nina?  She is the definition of wild, in fact the next blog post will probably be all about her!  So seeing other kids being free spirited makes my heart sing.  I love playing games, I feel like I am socially better with the kids than with the adults to be honest.  So we get the perfect family photo during your session, but we also get fun poses that make memories.  Below are a few other examples of "poses" I have families do during sessions.  We tell stories, we take breaks, we make the most of our hour or so together.  This family let me in on some little inside jokes they had that had me laughing just as much as they were.  If you check out my Facebook page you can see a few more little stories about our adventures also.  My favorite moments from this session were when mom and dad were snuggling in and loving on their babies, those moments are the best to witness.  Have questions about my posing?  Leave me some questions or comments below! <3 Amy  

There is its folks!  The coveted "everyone looking at the camera" photo!  Total WIN for mom, dad, AND the photographer!  But what comes next (besides ordering christmas cards)?  What can you follow this up with?  I am pretty good with posing multiple family members together, or poses within family members.  What I've been working on is the natural interaction, and capturing it beautifully.  This takes just as much work!  Learning prompts, ways to keep parents relaxed, even when kids are being wild.  Let me tell you this.  I LOVE WILD.  Have you seen photos of my middle daughter Nina?  She is the definition of wild, in fact the next blog post will probably be all about her!  So seeing other kids being free spirited makes my heart sing.  I love playing games, I feel like I am socially better with the kids than with the adults to be honest.  So we get the perfect family photo during your session, but we also get fun poses that make memories.  Below are a few other examples of "poses" I have families do during sessions.  We tell stories, we take breaks, we make the most of our hour or so together.  This family let me in on some little inside jokes they had that had me laughing just as much as they were.  If you check out my Facebook page you can see a few more little stories about our adventures also.  My favorite moments from this session were when mom and dad were snuggling in and loving on their babies, those moments are the best to witness.  Have questions about my posing?  Leave me some questions or comments below!

<3 Amy

 

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Before and After Featured Photo // Red Bluff Portrait Photographer

I've been thinking a lot about sharing some editing tips and tricks.  I also was thinking about hosting an editing webinar or in person edit workshop after the first of the year.  This may drop on Black Friday? hint, hint.  What I love about photographing children in their imagination, but also their willingness to be in front of the camera.  There is no self consciousness, no self doubt, kids amaze me.  I love when a child is laughing, playing, being natural, but nothing beats that strong eye contact portrait.  When you can feel a child staring into your soul and baring theirs.  When you can look at a photo and instantly see the universe.  It is one thing to take a portrait and another to be able to edit it and show others how you feel when you took the photo.  I want to help YOU get there!  I've chosen a photo of my oldest daughter (I have THREE!) to share with you.  One image is SOOC, meaning straight out of camera, one is with my adjustments in ACR, adobe camera raw, and the last is the final image.  Now I may be considered lazy, I don't know, but I shoot with my white balance in auto and fix it later.  I don't feel like it makes that big of a difference to fix it in post processing and it doesn't take that much time.  Even when I shoot using Kelvin I end up adjusting it some so I figure I'll spend less time on the shoot and more time in the digital dark room if you will.  I do all my editing by hand, I do not use presets, I do not use Lightroom at all actually, and I do not use any actions, except those I have created myself.  A few things you do need to get right in camera is your exposure and your light.  Make sure and check those catchlights in your subjects eyes!!  This is what shows we are alive!!  I've edited this to have a really great fall feel to it, if you have questions, let me know.  Please leave me a little love in the comment section also.

<3 Amy

 

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