Photography Is Art

Photography is art. As a photographer I am an Artist. An artist is someone who looks at something and ultimately see’s something completely different than the next person. Which is why being an artist as a photographer is unique.

There are many photographers, even more so now that DSLR’s are very common and alsmost a staple in every household with children. This was my reasoning to purchasing my first DSLR. Although many think there is incredible compeition within the Photography industry, I am beginning to see the exact opposite.

For me Photography truly is an art, some where I take the fine detail, pay very close attention and get an eye for the image before it is even captured, whereas other I embrace the whole picture and get a feel for everything going on in the environment of the photo to be taken.

As a photographer we all have our own style, our own way of interpreting various styles of photography – mine being candid & lifestyle. Which is also a relfection of me as a person.

Just like many artists, including music, I thoroughly enjoy the talent of another photographer and their view on the world and their subjects. Being a part of our local Camera Club has truly been an amazing opportunity to get to know other very talented Photographers in our own surrounding area and appreciate the beauty of their own art.  

Your Life As Art Photography came to me as I was thinking of a way to describe MY photography… My Photography for myself and my family truly is an artistic display of our family. This is where my website name came from www.yourlifeasartphotography.com

My blog, if you would like to follow, is www.pamelazmijablog.wordpress.com

My blog is a way for me to showcase my photography of all forms and… levels. From myself, my family, still subjects, animals and any clients.

For 2012, rather than going forward with growth of my business, I am going forward with growth in myself, my family and my photography. What does this mean? I will be taking on a very limited number of sessions so that I still enjoy the beauty photography provides me for my own enjoyment and family.

 
I am a wife, mother and most importantly ME!

What makes ME? My love of memories, photography, my family, husband, children, wine, music, cooking, boating, outdoors, warm sunshine, sweet light, green grass, beautiful landscape, the beach, water, my pets, animals. Not all in that order but its all a true reflection of who I am.

 
Although this decision to take a small step back, may seem … small. I have given it a great deal of thought. Much of this thought going to ‘do I push to grow…’ while also working full time in my family business, or as I mentioned above put the effort into the growth of myself, my family which will then influence my family and perhaps offer me more satisfaction and enjoyment. This is a small step, yet large in my life. I know some fantastic photographers in our area and over the past year have been very lucky to have gotten to know them even better! I would not hestitate for a moment to recommend a fellow photographer if I am unavailable.
 
For me and as a wife and mother I am very satisfied with my decision. Not only does this offer me more photographic time and creativity with and for my family, it also allows me the opportuntiy to enjoy my fellow photographers work even more. As an artist, just like writers block, we too need to get our photographic creative juices flowing again and this is just the beginning! ❤

What makes a professional… || Mount Forest Photographer

Interesting topic today…
What makes a professional?
Is it the equipment, experience or knowledge… many seem to put too much focus on the equipment, if I buy an expensive ‘tool’ I can do anything.


When in fact it is a combination of all 3. From my own experience – outside of photography, before I could join our family business I was required to have education, over the years I have gained on my experience and knowledge. Quite similar…  as a trades person you must have knowledge and experience to receive your license.
My husband and I just purchased a new professional grade gas stove for our new home… does this make me a baker or cook… because I now have a top of the line piece of equipment?

No.

I know I am not a baker, I enjoy cooking but by no means am I a “cook”, no matter how great my oven may be. We bought it because it was a great deal and we enjoy cooking at home. However we do still indulge in some fantastic meals out – and most times kidless!
I had a very recent photography experience which made me really think on this and think about my new oven. How easy and affordable it now is for anyone to purchase a DSLR and regardless of their knowledge or experience, they have the equipment and think that they’re set to be a “pro” and begin charging. This recent experience (which will remain nameless), the client received their photos back from the “professional” they hired to find the photos were not what they expected at all – quality wise.

After hearing a description of the photos I knew what had happened, the photographer under exposed the images and they were extremely “noisy” and beyond “repair”. I offered to have a look at one photo to look at the EXIF data to see what was wrong. My initial thoughts of what went wrong, was exactly that. The photo was poorly exposed which resulted in an extremely noisy image, it was also out of focus and the white balance was off as well. 

Certainly not to ‘toot my own horn’, as this is a very common and unfortunatley typical situation for those who tend to believe it is “easy” to be a photographer. It takes a lot of time, patience, practice, understanding and then comes equipment. If you cannot nail exposure and focus on a lower end camera, you are not going to be able to do it on a mid-range pro-sumer camera (consumer/professional).

When looking for a photographer ASK lots of questions: Ask what equipment they use and WHY? Do they have insurance? Do they shoot jpg or RAW and WHY? Do they have a portfolio and can you see a variety of their work? Do they have an external speedlite flash? If they do not, why, if they do why and what do they use it for? Do they have backup equipment?

Think of your Photography as an investment not only in Art for your Home but also in yourselves and your Family. Simply by putting a small amount as less as $50 a month aside you can have a Custom Photography Session + Wall Art each year!

I cannot post without some photos… our gorgeous cousin is expecting their first baby! It was a pleasure photographing her!

You are gorgeous and just glowing!
Cannot wait to meet the wee babe 🙂

New Location & Studio Space!~ || Mount Forest Photographer

As of July I will have my very own office & studio space which I am VERY excited for… actually very is an understatement. 2 different hard wood floors on the main floor – yes! Very excited for this. Amazing light in the house… and a back yard that not only is pleasing to my hubby and kids… but oh yes is a great space for a photographer!

Yes to say I am excited is very much an understatement I am elated, blessed, ready to ROCK! lol. I wont be taking any sessions the last week of June as that is when we will be preparing to move and moving (at some point lol). Depending on the weather… I could sneak in a couple sessions on the July 1st long weekend -perhaps a moving special… mini sessions!

I have so many fabulous ideas in mind that I cannot wait to get settled and begin planning. This truly was a blessing for us and we are so thankful for the way it has worked out – we could not have asked for anything better!

Here are a few little sneaks of our new property!!!

My office/studio hardwood floor… love!

The dining room flooring!

And… part of the backyard from a couple different views.
Once we get in I’ll do a full post on my new photography site hehe…
Yes I did keep this in mind when looking 😉

Your Life As ART Photography – Workflow & Value || Mount Forest Photographer

One of the first things I learned in my photography journey is there is MUCH more to photography than just buying a “good” camera and taking a picture.

There is a true art to capturing a photograph!

Much of it begins with getting to a comfortable level with your subjects, whether it be babies, children, adults or combination – getting comfortable and most of all having FUN! Once you get into that frame of mind it is capturing their TRUE emotion, being able to visualize the image in your mind even before you set it up – yes lifestyle photography does have some ‘setting’ up to it, and … even though you capture these images digitally on the camera – that truly is ONLY the beginning.

Part of a photographers job is to make you SHINE! Capture your TRUE emotion, so true that when you look at those images you FEEL those images. And of course, treasure those images for many, many years to come. Afterall we are capturing Your Life As Art – to be PROUDLY displayed in your home.

So… what do you get if you invest your family art with me…

After the Shoot – My workflow…
So what happens after I get home from a shoot… I immediately download the images – whether I am going to edit them right away or not, they immediately get downloaded – these images are priceless! I also then change the card in my camera – I will not use your card again until I know the images are backed up at least twice (online on Flickr + my back up drive – and also my computer – so 3 in total 😉 ). Then… since I ONLY shoot in RAW I imporgt my images into Lightroom, make any basic edits there and then export into Photoshop CS5 – this is where I do the majority of my fine tuning.

Afterall … there is MUCH more to a final image than just downloading the image from the camera.

I have been using Pure Photography Design “Actions” for a while now to assist in my editing workflow. Basically what an “action” is, is a control within Photoshop to complete an edit in just a few steps vs many various steps. However its just not that simple – I love how Chrissy and Rachel describe their actions – they are like Salt and Pepper… lol you do not dump all of the salt and pepper onto your food and its much like that with their actions. By using these actions I streamline my workflow and achieve the final image I have in my mind much more efficiently – afterall, I am a photographer not a photoshop guru lol. I am able to complete the tweaking to an image in half the time as I would going through ALL the various steps myself. It truly is a matter of knowing what you are aiming to achieve and always having control of the image! The well known (to the photography industry) Wedding Photographer Jasmine Star has a fabulous post on this – it is a couple years old but shows how having a true eye for tweating a properly exposed image (which is KEY to any image) using actions can be a photographers lifesaver! Whats cool is that Jasmine is such a fabulous wedding photographer… she outsources her RAW editing – to a company she trusts of course!

So… my purpose of this post was not to ramble on (anyone who knows me knows I do that quite well 😉 ). These images below is what I wanted to show…

Above is my SOOC shot (straight out of the camera shot – well perhaps I shouldn’t say that – my actual SOOC shot was vertical, I rotated this 90 degrees clock wise to show a better comparison).

Below… is my final edit (I did in fact provide them with a couple different edits, including b+w, hey Im a mom and I know how much these images TRULY do mean!)

And for fun… here is the B+W…

This is just a small glimpse at how I capture …
Your Life As Art with my Photography!

Baby Boy Newborn Birth Annoucements || Mount Forest Photography

NEW for 2011 is Newborn Birth Annoucements for all my Parents & Baby’s as part of their Newborn Photography Session! ! ! 

Here are just a few examples of the Newborn Birth Annoucements for Baby Boys!  


(personal information regarding baby’s birthdate, weight and full names have been removed)


I photograph all kinds of babies – today… puppies! || Mount Forest Photographer

Today my family and I went to meet these beautiful baby chocolate labs – was an added bonus that there was also some baby goldens right beside them! My kids were very unsure of these tiny little creatures at first but eventually warmed up!

When they finally warmed up to the wiggly little guys!
This is the dad… beautiful big fella!
The mama with her golden’s next door to the chocolates
And this… my fav pic of the morning! Love moms excitement 
and the kids truly were unsure 😉

Although I would rather not think of the day our family will be getting a new pup… I know that day will come, our old man is getting older and he is showing his age. After visiting the Cooperslane Kennel today, I know this is where we will be getting our next fur baby from!

Check em out… Cooperslane Kennel


Fun in the snow – February Snow Storm || Mount Forest Photography

Well I wondered if the weather man was actually going to be right – nothing against them of course, however it was pretty calm… then yes early morning the storm hit! I missed the thunder, but the wind – WOW! 


I held the kids off from going outside until 4pm… at exactly 350pm little man Cars began getting his stuff on, seriously how did he know what time it was lol. I wont complain they were great today, I was able to get some work done and they enjoyed having a lazy day 🙂 All in all good day! 


So when we went outside I of course had to bring my camera out for a bit… then joined in with the kids climbing up the snow hills and shoveled the walk. But man oh man was it COLD! After being out for half and hour I was sooo ready to come in – good thing is they were too 😉 


Click on the photo’s to view bigger 🙂