Absolute Perfection! (Winnipeg Newborn Photographers)

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At 10 days old this little guy is absolutely perfect in every way. He was a perfect little poser and ever so cute!  His big brothers and sisters were wonderful to work with and his big sister was very helpful. Lucky family of 5 beautiful children! I’ll be posting more of this family later but here are a few to start with.

Have a look!

Family Reunion! (Winnipeg Event Photographers)

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I had the honour of photographing this family reunion at the Canad Inn on Saturday. Pictured here you can see the grandparents with their 6 grandchildren. It was the first time in 15 years that this family had been together. I can understand how wonderful that would be for these grandparents as one of my sons lives in Calgary and it has been a while since my whole family has been together.

I don’t think this family could have given a better gift for their 50th wedding anniversary than their presence at this event.

This is one of the granddaughters with her boyfriend. Aren’t they cute!

The Seasons of Victoria Beach (Winnipeg Photographers)

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Over the past 4 years I have had the privilege of getting to know Victoria Beach. John, my fiance, is fortunate enough that his grandfather bought a cabin there in 1944 for $600. This cabin was torn down a couple of years ago and replaced with a new, modern and very beautiful cabin.  It is really more of a beach house than a cabin. We both love it there and call it our sanctuary. Most people only come to their cabins in the summer but we go all year round and we love it even more in the winter. Here are some images that I’ve taken in the 4 seasons at Victoria Beach.

SUMMER

Summer is a very busy time at VB.  There are people playing tennis, visiting in the village green, biking, walking, swimming and waiting in line at the bakery. The sunsets are amazing and the beaches are busy. The pelicans and the eagles are back and the days are long and hot. I love summer.

 

FALL

Fall is the most beautiful time at VB. The days and nights are cooler and there are fewer people around, especially after Thanksgiving. I love walking with my camera in the fall.

WINTER

It might strike you as strange but winter has become my favorite season at VB. There are a few reasons for this. First of all, the people are gone. The population goes from about 16,000 in the summer to 450 in the winter.  It’s not that I don’t like people, but I love the solitude in winter. I love walking the dogs on the roads without worrying about anyone complaining about them being off leash. I love that even on the coldest days, the wind is blocked by the trees and I can take the dogs for walks.  I love the pictures that I can take of the cold and the snow. Take a look:

 

 

SPRING

One of the really neat things about spring at VB is hearing the ice moving as it melts. The dogs can still run free and people have not returned yet. Spring leads to some really interesting pictures as well, with the contrast of the blue water and sky and the white snow and ice.

 

As you can see, it is an idyllic place in all the seasons.

We would love to see you at our sanctuary. Come for a drive and visit us. It’s only an hour from the North Perimeter and well worth the trip.

Cute as a Button, One Year Old! (Winnipeg Child Photographers)

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This little cutie was all smiles yesterday. Until the cake came out and then her expressions changed to ones of puzzlement and distaste. Personally, I love sweets, but this little girl was not impressed. She played with the sucker but she did not like the taste of cake!

I had a great time with this little smilie!

21 Photo or ChrisMcWilliamsPhotography? Please vote.

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I’ve been thinking about changing the name of my portrait business to 21photo.ca for some time now. I use 21photo.ca for my travel/nature photography and was thinking of changing everything to be under one name.

My reasons for wanting to change it are:

  • It’s a shorter name.
  • I like the sound of it.

My reasons against changing it are:

  • It will take a lot of effort to change my business cards and website to 21photo.ca
  • People already know me as chrismcwilliamsphotography

So I am asking you. Please tell me what you think? Should I change it or leave it as is? I  value your opinion. I know some photographers have done this kind of “rebranding.” Was it worth it? Was it as much work as I think it will be?

 

Here’s the poll:

 

The Perfect Christmas Gift! (Winnipeg Photographers)

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Christmas is just over a month away and everyone is starting to think about buying the perfect Christmas present for their loved ones.

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What is the perfect gift anyway?

I think it is a present that the receiver can use and treasure for years to come. It’s often hard to think of what that could be. We know that after Christmas many people are busy returning presents that don’t fit or aren’t appropriate.

I have a suggestion for making the whole thing a lot easier. Get a photography gift certificate!

A gift certificate for a photography session is one gift that is always appreciated. It is one that will be treasured for years to come and won’t be returned on Boxing Day. It not only creates memories but keeps them.

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If you’ve already had a photography session this year, then why not buy one of a number of different photo products that are available. Some of them are listed below but this list is not exclusive.

Let me know if you have some pictures that you would like to use for photo gifts but need your galleries relisted. I can do that for you.

It’s very easy to order a photo gift from my website. Let me know if you need any help or if you would like your gallery relisted. Then just pick your image, your product and pay for it. In no time at all, it will be delivered right to your door!

Here are a few of the photo products:

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Desk organizer

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Fridge Magnet

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Mousepad

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Playing Cards

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Photo puzzles

Snap and Burn or Professional Photography? (Winnipeg Portrait Photographers)

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It always surprises me when clients expect to receive the digital images from their session for the cost of the sitting fee. There are some photographers who do that.  They are commonly called “snap and burn” photographers because that is exactly what they do. They take your pictures and give you the images right out of their cameras.

I wrote about them here: https://cmphotographyblog.com/2012/10/17/snap-and-burn-photography-winnipeg-portrait-photographers/, so I won’t say anymore about them. They offer a service, but they are not artists and are certainly not professionals.

I think it is important that consumers understand the difference between a “snap and burn” photographer and a professional photographer. A professional treats their photography as an art form and attempts to create  magic with their images. Art takes time to develop. It does not come straight out of the camera after one snap of a button.

“It is all very well to copy what one sees, but it is far better to draw what one now only sees in one’s memory. That is a transformation in which imagination collaborates with memory.”
~Edgar Degas

I might spend 45 minutes with you. After that, I usually put an average of 2.5 hours into sorting and editing your images. Your sitting fee includes this post photo shoot sorting and editing. When you send me your order, I put additional  time into each image. Depending on what I want to do with it, it can be anywhere from 10 minutes to 30 minutes. Per image.

Here is one example.

The image on the left is right out of the camera. My vision for this image was to show the baby floating on a cloud in the sky. You can see that I shot it wide. I did that to make sure I had enough of the sky. The sky in the backdrop is uneven and the baby’s skin tones are off. Before the client saw it, I cropped the image, filled in the sky and fixed the baby’s skin tones.

Once I knew that this was an image my client wanted to purchase, I put more space around the blanket and did more softening of the sky. I also spent more time on the baby’s skin and removed the redness from the baby’s feet. As you can imagine, this does take time.

 

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In the first image you can see the heater keeping the baby warm and the other things that were on the floor. The image on the right is the completed image and shows my vision of how this image would be.

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These sisters look adorable dancing in the park, but their faces are too dark and the grass and the trees are too yellow. I wanted to make the image more magical. You can see the result on the right. before after-120before after-9

It would not be safe for a one year old to stand backwards on a bench. Dad was right there to make sure this little one would not fall. Her face was  washed out in the original. I love here sweet smile in the final picture!

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Baby’s skin usually needs quite a bit of work to smooth and remove blemishes. You can see the original one of this little guy on the left; the first edit on the left and the final image below. Isn’t he adorable?

 

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I love making photographs that you will display and enjoy for years to come. I get a lot of pleasure in seeing the final results of my work. But it does take time.

It’s important for clients to understand the type of product they are getting and, when researching various photographers, understand that a variety of price points often reflects a variety of different services, skill levels and overall quality of the finished product.

After all, just because they called themselves a photographer and owned a nice camera, doesn’t make it so. I can type. Does that make me a Hemingway? Or a J.K Rowling?

Robert Provencher says:

I bet they (snap and burn photographers) wouldn’t know the first thing about photoshop. Do you? It takes a long time, and many, many images artistically enhanced to get good at it. Just like cooking. Or writing. Or playing the piano)

So, why do so many go for the “shoot and burn” photography? In my opinion, there are two reasons.

  1. Reason number one why so many go for the shoot and burn session- It seems like a great deal at the time, so it’s all about saving money. Who doesn’t like that idea!
  2. And number two, many don’t know any better. You can’t blame anyone for not knowing any better  can you? You don’t know what you don’t know!

This blog post is my attempt to get clients to understand the difference and to not be fooled by cheap prices and fast turn arounds. If you want an artistic portrait that you will cherish, don’t hire and snap and burn photographer.

I consider myself an artist. It has taken me a lot of time, practice, workshops and learning to get to where I am today. It didn’t happen over night. It is something that I continue to work at. Always honing my skills, learning and trying to get to the next level of expertise.

Your memories are worthy of the skills and talent of a craftsman. Aren’t they?