I'm so proud of my friend Courtney! Yesterday marked her little man's five-month birthday and we walked her through some transformational tips to taking better pictures. As it turns out, all she needed was a starting place! When she showed me her pictures - BEFORE 10 AM, no less - I knew I had to share them with everyone!
BEFORE - 4 Months
AFTER - 5 Months
And now she's got the bug!!! Congrats Courtney on your beautiful pictures and I can't wait to see what you do next!
TO MY CHILDREN
The tweet read, "RT @kirtsy: I've watched this 100 times. And I want to send it to every mom I know. http://bit.ly/cgZCwZ Thank you, @katherinecenter" I had a few spare minutes (ever looking for a diversion from what I SHOULD be doing) and after all, I am a mom... My heart stopped inside my chest and after several moments I realized that I wasn't breathing. I hadn't connected with anything this way in a very long time. It was the best spent 2 minutes and 41 seconds online ever. Thank you twitter!
I've watched this video now more times then I care to admit and shed a number of tears that only another mom could understand or guess. And you know what, I'm ok with that. It made me think of all the things I have wanted to say, If only I knew how. This is something that I have struggled with in my own journey as a mother. I have journals that were started with all the best intentions, that are still waiting for their pages to be filled. And there in lies my problem so many things I want to say, but am never quite sure how to say them. Whenever I write them down I feel like it's only part of the story, but doesn't paint the whole picture. I want them to know the whole picture, I want them to see themselves the way I did. Then I realized, It's through my images that I can tell the rest of the story. My camera is an extension of my heart, my mind, my hand, and my mouth. It tells my story in way that I never could before. I am so grateful to have found my voice through my lens, because now I can tell them the whole story, I can show them, and they can know.
Momtographers, this community is in it's infancy, but I hope that now as we lay the framework, it's built with the spirit of empowering every mom to find a voice to tell her story. To show her children all the things she want's them to know. We want to empower you so that you can use your camera in a way that brings you joy and satisfaction. If you are like me and find that sometimes words escape you, I hope that you feel powerful now knowing there is another way.
To my children:
Since the moment I felt you flutter in my belly I've loved you with a love that I never could have imagined. From your funny faces, to your sad ones, tears and giggles, first steps and first bites, you are beautiful, and sensitive, funny, clever, and a little naughty. The way you love each other amazes me more and more every day! I love you my sweet girls. And when words aren't enough or don't flow the way they should, there are the images...
This morning, I'm more than a little bit distracted so I appreciate if you just go with me on this slightly-off topic post. As most of you have surely by now heard, the island of Haiti was struck by an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.0 with several aftershocks in the range of 4-6. That would be devastating in any city - but to have struck so near the capitol of Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, the word devastating doesn't seem enough.
Growing up, my snot nose was privledged enough to go on a mission trip not once, but twice to Haiti. I had to dig through the scrapbooks to find the evidence, but here I am at 11 visiting these PRECIOUS girls at their school:
I had no idea what I was doing.
My daughter was twelve hours old, my new camera had barely been out of the box that long, and my legs were still iffy from the epidural. But in the quiet of the evening with all visitors gone and my husband snoozing in the hospital recliner that only comes in that odd shade of mauve vinyl, we were finally alone - just she and I. Me and my baby girl.
Well hello there Momtographers!
Being my inaugural Momtographers blogpost, this is the paragraph where I'm supposed to say something profound, insert a rally cry, and set the tone for this - our new website. And I would attempt to rise to the occasion if it weren't for this ticky little thing... I can't keep my food down.
Krista and I have have been locked to our chairs for days weeks on end putting the finishing touches on everything we've worked on for over a year and laying the ground work for the things to come, and I can't hold onto dinner. So I pat my face, come back to the computer, chuckle over IM with Krista that I've thrown up AGAIN, and ten minutes later I have a spoon in my mouth eating the guilty substance all over again.
Ever wonder how some kids just seem to always have that twinkle in their eye, like in EVERY picture? Well that Momtographer has learned the magic of "catchlights."Catchlights - if you haven't heard the term yet, rest assured, you will. It's a phrase that gets a lot of play in portrait photography circles - and with good reason!
But what the heck are they? Some sort of magic lighting gizmo that comes with membership to the secret society of expert photographers? Um, no. Quite simply, they are reflections of light CAUGHT in your subject's eyes. The key to getting a catchlight is to always have your little one face the light source (i.e. a window, door or sunshine) so that the light can reflect back into their eyes.
Here's a little tip - if you can SEE it before taking the picture then it's there!
Once you master this little, or should we say BIG tip, you will be well on your way to transforming your snapshots from blah, to WOW!
And please - we BEG you - resist the urge to fake it! There are so many tips, tricks, tutorials and software actions out there to create a catchlight where there isn't one, but most of the time your kid ends up looking plain creepy! Besides, why spend your time learning how to fake something that is so easy to achieve for real?!?
So what exactly do we mean by facing the light source? Here let us show you...
Now that you "see" it, it's pretty simple, isn't it? Now go snap to it - we want to see those catchlights!