Archive for the 'Kids' Category


video critique of family portrait

Today, this family portrait of mine was critiqued by Craig Tanner of The Mindful Eye. Craig has been an important mentor and teacher – and friend. I’ve taken two workshops with him and hope to take more. His website is a terrific free resource of inspiration and teaching about photography.

Here’s the video:


Vacation Bible School

Last week at my church, Saint Luke’s Parish in Darien, CT, we had a Vacation Bible School, with kids from our church as well as children from several surrounding communities. Some of the kids came from nearby homeless shelters. What an amazing week – 250 kids, doing crafts, singing, learning a little bit about faith, getting to know one another and just having fun.

I had the privilege of photographing each of the 14 “tribes” – the Asher tribe is shown above.  And I also shot, from a rooftop, the whole VBS community, as shown below.


three teens surprise dad for father’s day!

Can you keep a secret? If you recognize these kids, do NOT tell their dad about these pictures! These teenagers (along with their mom) decided they wanted to surprise Dad on Father’s Day with some new family photos.

So, last week, we did a shoot at their home. It happened to be miserably hot, but the kids were just great – very patient and willing to work hard to get good images.

As any of you know who try to corral teenagers, it’s difficult to find a time where they are all available. 3PM in the afternoon was that time. I would have preferred to shoot closer to dusk, to get a warmer light, but these images worked out fine. We set up in open shade to avoid the harsh sun of mid-afternoon, and then used a flash unit on a stand to bring some light into their faces.

We mostly shot out in the yard, but did a few headshots in the living room, such as the one on the right.

With the group shots, I always take a lot of pictures. With three people, the chances that one person is in the middle of a blink or doesn’t have a good expression is pretty high. So, the more pictures you take, the better the odds are that you will have enough “keepers.” I took over 300 images in this shoot. As it turned out, I didn’t need so many – the kids were smiling and looking great in almost every picture. Isn’t this a fabulous looking trio of kids?


kids in the memorial day parade

Just posting a few grab shots from the Memorial Day Parade in my hometown of Darien, CT.  I couldn’t help wondering what the kids of some other countries  are doing today – Somalia or Yemen, Libya or Malawi. I hope someday the children of each of those countries will have a fun day such as our kids had today. It won’t be the same of course, nor should it be. But I pray for a better life – peace, stability, hope and joy – for all the world’s children. Some Day.


Sisters – a baby and a toddler

Last week, I had a fun shoot with two young sisters, Lucy, pictured above, age 3, and Clara, age 6 months, below. These girls are adorable, don’t you think?

When shooting kids, I’ve learned a few things that are important. One,  set up the lighting to be pretty soft and even all around. I’m not going to be able to get young kids to look in the direction of one light. In the first shot of Lucy, she was actually looking away from the main light, but I had enough light coming from the second light on the other side to show her face properly.

The second tip that’s important with young kids – get down low, at their level. In most of these shots I was lying on my stomach, propped up with my elbows.   I also try to get as close as I can, so the child pretty well fills the frame.

And, the third and last tip – shoot a lot of pictures and shoot fast. You never know when the kids are going to lose interest, or just “lose it” altogether. Lucy and Clara were wonderful for about 50 minutes – pretty amazing for their age. I took 170 photographs of them in that time, which included some fast wardrobe changes.  The family picked out about 50 images they liked and from that group I chose 27 pictures to edit in Photoshop. 

Here are the two girls together.


baptism and joyful family gathering!

Recently I had the honor of  shooting a baptism of two babies and a  gathering of their extended family of 14 people.  We started at the church and took a few images after the service (no pictures allowed during the service – a good thing).  In the image above, if you look carefully at the bottom center of the frame, you will see a small edge of the glass baptismal font – a subtle discovery.  We just had a few minutes to grab these images, as the church was being set up for the next service.  The altar guild was patient with me, for which I am grateful!

After the church service, we went to the home of the grandparents.  A few days before the baptism, I’d scouted the home and had chosen a sun porch to take some of the family pictures. There was a lot of natural warm light in the room and I filled in with one strobe light in an umbrella. I’ve learned to keep things simple.

The babies were adorable. When this picture was taken, one was a bit happier than the other. Both were real troopers!

This was a fun day for me all around.  Everyone in the family was terrific – and photogenic to boot.  The family was pleased with my work, which of course makes it all worthwhile. I don’t do a lot of “event” photography, but after this experience, I’m ready to do more.  Do you have a special family event planned?

After the inside shots, of several combinations of the 14 people, we took some pictures of the whole group outside.


Adorable Young Boys – Images for Holiday cards

Well, these two boys – a sixth grader and a third grader – probably do not want to be called adorable. But these little guys are pretty handsome – and photogenic, plus amazingly well-behaved and comfortable being photographed. These images are from a recent shoot that Mom and Dad will use for a holiday card, as well as prints for family members as Christmas gifts.

These shoots are great fun for me. I’d be pleased to photograph your boys – or girls – or whole family.