My Treelight Session Tutorial - allen tx photographer

As each year passes since I purchased our prelit tree the day after Christmas at 50% off at Target, the tree is less and less prelit. Each year a new quadrant no longer lites, so that this year only the top 12 inches of the sad tree was lighting. I contemplated what to do - leave it be this year, and buy another tree the day after Christmas? I imagined my children speaking of their youth, and saying "Well, we had a tree but only the top was ever lit" As that scenario went through my mind, off I went to buy more lights in Allen, Texas. We must have a fully lit prelit tree!!! Our tree now looks as amazing as it once did.

 My youngest little loves to help me decorate so we did the lights, the garland, and both boys helped with the ornaments. I always take Christmas morning videos and photos but had not tried a session at night with the tree lit. We had 10 minutes one night before karate, so my little sat for me for a test shot in our home. He put on his holiday jammies from last year, they really do not fit him well anymore but you can't really see it, except now that I've pointed it out! :) So this is an image made by a tree than no longer lit, and jammies that no longer fit - yet I love and will always treasure, that youth, innocence, and magic of Christmas in my youngest.



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TUTORIAL:

If you'd like to try one of your own children, it is best if you have a DSLR camera than can easily handle high ISO. We turned all the lights out so only the tree was lit. The tree should be lit with white lights, lots and lots of white lights.

I shoot in manual and do adjust my settings as I go and see what works best, but for the below shot here is where my setting were: ISO: 12,800 Aperture: 2.2 Shutter: 200

The twinkle in the lights is created by a Star Filter. Mine is a Rocketfish 8-point Star Filter bought at Best Buy last year for under $20. You need to be sure you buy one that will fit the lens you will be using. The star filter works best in a dark room with small bright sources of light which is why it is perfect for my Treelight Session.

 In Lightroom, I did a good amount of noise reduction, reduced clarity, increased the exposure a touch, increased the highlights, and decreased the shadows. I took the adjustment brush and darkened the exposure on the wall behind my son in our family room. In Photoshop, I did a bit of spot removal and cleaned it up a bit and magic - Treelight Twinkle done!


Happy Holiday to you and your families!

A Treelight session - Allen texas photographer

A new little mini session I am testing out is my Treelight Sessions, seeing the magic in your child's eye as they discover the magic of Christmas in your home.

Would there be any interest in a couple of these in the next week? All we need for a Treelight session is fabulous tree lighting, a fully decorated and fully lit tree, holiday jammies, maybe a cookie or two and some presents, a willing child or two, and some fun, smiles, and laughter.

I may need a model or two from a family for whom I've already photographed a family session any year.   You can send me a photo of your tree.

 If you see this post, drop me a note.

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Rock The Shot Christmas Tree - Allen, Texas photographer

This month's photo contest at Rock The Shot is Christmas Trees, so no better time to enter than this sweet little girl checking out the sparkles on her tree.

This is my first time trying out a this type of shoot  with only the tree lite,  a high iso, open wide  - how did I do?






Rock the Shot

An old stone bridge - Allen, Texas photographer

This little girl running across the bridge was at my "studio" in Allen,  Texas when she was only a few days old.   She's now going on three and I've seen her at least once a year since then.   It warms my heart to keep seeing her and her newish baby brother.  

My clients may not realize this, but as a photographer I get attached to my clients,  I thoroughly enjoy seeing you each year -  joking and interacting with your kiddos to get good photos -  enjoy looking at all I captured of your family even the funny face your dog made.  Do you want to see that one?   I truly hope you get the same joy out of viewing your final images.

Ya'll just don't know how much your mean to me.  I wish the best for every one of you.

For the little ones,  I found and am introducing a new puppet friend for 2015 -  hopefully he will be just as entertaining as Tickle Owl.



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Thursday, November 27, 2014

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Happy Thanksgiving 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Thank you for so many old and new clients who have found me this year - it has been a joy and pleasure to meet and photograph ya'll and your sweet children.

Enjoy the day.  

Here is what I am thankful for, me and mine, and cheers to finding an old slideshow from 2011 of me and mine and our memories and adventures.  


 

a boy and a stick - Allen, Texas photographer

My boy . . and a stick . . . and a field . . . in nature. 

 The perfect combination and I love it so.  

 As he and his brother grow it is harder to get those so-called "lifestyle" photos at home.  Gone are the days of not being able to reach the sink, or standing on tippy toes to see to the counter, playing with Thomas the Train, watching Disney Jr, and that pirate show.    So we generally go on a hike, breath some fresh air,  scoot, bike,  run, play,  etc., them roam, let them explore while I follow along with my camera.

Mostly I just want to remember our time together and these moments.

  Nicholas Yellow field

A session to remember, remember this space - Allen, Texas photographer

When we first moved to the Plano / Allen area, we drove past open fields and land, and areas of nothingness.   It's what we loved about the area, it's why we choose this area.   Sadly, it seems each day more and more of it is getting developed.

One evening, a friend,  who has selflessly volunteers her time to help preserve land, and I trekked out to snap some images of her children for a quick sunset session.

It is a session to remember - remember this space and her children at this age.  It is a space they may not remember, as soon it will no longer exist in it's current state.


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