9 Tips for Preparing for Your Child’s Session

Your photography session with Bird’s Eye Photography is right around the corner! Are you ready? We’ve prepared a checklist of things for you to remember in order to make make sure your child is prepared for their big day!

  1. Don’t forget to feed your child before the session. Also, pack snacks just in case hunger strikes again while we’re shooting. I personally detest the feeling of being ‘hangry’ so your little one is probably no different.
  2. Bring more than one outfit. Make sure you always have backup clothes just in case. And we suggest that you don’t change your child into their session clothing until after you have fed him. Also, be very careful with drinks, as well – only clear liquids in a safe cup.
  3. Let your child help when picking out their clothes for the session (unless they have a hideous sense of fashion.) By letting your child wear his favorite shirt or shoes, etc. this will help him feel more comfortable. If his choice of clothing is awful or doesn’t match, see if you can use that shirt as an undershirt or tell him he can put it on for a couple of shots at the end of the session.
  4. If you have a young child, try to schedule the session around his naptime he will be wellrested and happy for photos.
  5. Have a bribe in place. Bring fruit snacks, candy, a toy, etc. and let him know that if he cooperates he will get said bribery. Some parents have bribed their children by telling them if they are good, they can watch Netflix on Mommy or Daddy’s phone. Use whatever you think will work for your child to motivate him to cooperate.
  6. Bring along his favorite toy or blanket. This will help your child be comfortable in a new, unfamiliar surrounding. Just be aware that this will probably become a prop in some of the photos, so bring something that is pleasing to the eyes or has sentimental value and you’d be okay with photos of it.
  7. Talk to your child about the session and explain what’s going to happen. If your child is informed about the situation, it will be less scary for him when he comes to the session. Tell him that he is going to meet a new friend who is going to take some pictures of him. Let him know that you’ll be there with him and that we are going to have lots of fun. We might change his clothes once or twice and ask him to sit a certain way. During the session, we can show him a couple of the photos so he can put two and two together.
  8. Bring Grandma (or someone else your child loves). Bringing along reinforcements is always a good plan. If grandma lives close by, or if your child’s favorite uncle has the day off of work, bring him or her with you. You can use this family member to help get your child to relax and laugh.
  9. Wear sturdy shoes. It is a good idea to wear good, sturdy shoes to a session like this, as it is challenging to chase a little one around in flip-flops or heels. During the session, I may ask you to grab your child if he keeps running out of the frame. Or I may have us walking around exploring, so we need to be prepared to keep our feet safe and comfortable.

Preparing for Your Winter Session with Bird’s Eye Photography

Winter in the DMV (Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia area) brings about very tricky and blustery weather. Some people shy away from winter sessions because, well, it’s cold. But winter sessions make for some prime photo ops, so don’t write off the brisk weather months for photo shoots.

 

  1. Keep tracking the weather. Those white winter days after a lot of snowfall can result in some of the most gorgeous photographs. Booking two months out probably won’t work, so you’ll instead want to book on a shorter notice.

 

  1. Really play up the winter accessories when planning outfits. Think cozy knit scarves, colorful coats, adorable boots, mittens and more.

 

  1. Plan the day out so that nobody gets fussy or too cold. A bribe of hot chocolate after the session goes a long way. Also make sure that everyone’s dressed warmly.

 

  1. Don’t be afraid to have fun in that snow. Snowball fights? Snowman building? Angels? The possibilities are endless and this should be all about having fun.

 

  1. Choose colors and prints that pop. An all white background is absolutely beautiful, but having that pop of red or that flash of gingham can really make for a gorgeous photograph.

 

  1. Pack the necessities. Noses tend to run in the cold, and glasses can fog up. Bring tissues, hand-warming packs, clean clothes and hot beverages to keep everyone perky throughout the shoot.

 

  1. Because it can be really cold, note that a shorter session may be in order. Make the most of your photos by using every single second to the max, especially at the beginning of the session when everyone’s still warm and spirits are particularly high.

How Many Hours Do I Need My Wedding Photographer?

Bird’s Eye Photography is one of Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia’s most sought after Wedding Photographers.  There may be a laundry list of questions couples have while in the planning process and while selecting vendors.  One of our most frequently asked questions prior to booking is: How long should I book my wedding photographer?

What do you want covered?

First, you need to decide what important details you want covered. Do you want a lot of getting ready shots prior to the ceremony? Do you want us to stay for the entire reception? These details will affect the length of time you will need us there. If you want us to stay until your reception exit, and you want a lot of candid, getting ready shots, you will need full day coverage. If you just want a few getting ready shots, that will knock off some time. If you want us to stay for just the main events in the reception and not until the last guest leaves, then this will also shorten the day. By deciding on a start and/or end time, this is the first step to booking your package.

Ceremony Length

Next, you need to think about the ceremony length. For a Catholic wedding, the ceremonies tend to be longer, so you will need to allot more time for that. If you want us to cover you getting ready, the ceremony, and the reception, I suggest 8-10 hours for Catholic weddings. If you have a shorter ceremony, you won’t need to take out as much time from your schedule.

Location Transfer

Now let’s talk about location. If you have a shorter ceremony and your reception is at the same venue as your ceremony, then you won’t need as much time because you can take out travel time. I would say something like this would be good for six to eight hours, depending on the formal photos.

On that same note, if your reception is at a different venue, you will need to include travel time into your schedule. Also incorporate the amount of time it takes to pack up all of your stuff to take to the reception. If you are going to take photos along the drive to the reception, more time will need to be added for that as well.

Formal Photo Requirements

For formal photos, you have to consider how many people are in your bridal party, and how many people are going to be in your family photos. If you have a small bridal party and a small number of family members having photos done, (and you’re at the same location the whole time), then six hours will suffice. If you have a larger family or bridal party, you will need closer to seven or maximum eight hours for offsite photos.

Special Exit

If you’re doing a special exit from the reception, like a sparkler exit, you’ll need to have full day coverage.

Some weddings can be covered in just four hours. If you’re having a backyard wedding or a courthouse wedding where your reception is short (for example, no dancing, etc.) and maybe just like a sit down dinner at a restaurant, then this could all be covered in four hours’ time.

Whatever you decide, Bird’s Eye Photography is able to accommodate you and make sure your special day is covered exquisitely and professionally!

7 Tips for Preparing for Your Spring Session

Start Preparing for Your Spring Session with Bird’s Eye Photography!

So, here are a few simple tips to ensure that your day is stress free and flawless for your spring session.

1. Wear layers. Spring can be finicky in the sense that you can go from frigid to over heated in a matter of minutes. We suggest wearing layers — tank top, tee shirt, cardigan, scarf, etc. That way each family member can peel off, or add, a layer as they see fit and remain comfortable throughout the session.

2. Location is a big deal. This is a great time to full take advantage of the fresh, warm air and beautiful budding trees and flowers. If you have any favorite locations in the Maryland, Washington D.C. or Virginia area, let us know. We have a nice list on hand, ourselves.

3. Play into the colors of the season when choosing your family’s outfits. Fresh pops of green, blue, pink and yellow are always a hit in the springtime. We recommend choosing a color theme for the whole gang, then slightly deviating from that with accessories to keep things interesting.

4. Speaking of accessories: wear them! Choose jewelry, scarves, or prints that play into the spring theme. Butterflies, flowers, insects, etc, can make for some super adorable family pictures.

5. Time it right. Book a session too early and you may miss out on those spring buds. Book too late and you’ve already wandered into summer’s territory. Keep an eye on the weather and give your photographer a call when the time is right.

6. Incorporate props. Spring offers some beautiful backdrops where props blend in perfectly. For example, old wooden chairs look stunning in a sea of blooming rose bushes, and a quilted blanket is lovely on the fresh, green grass.

7. Really think about your footwear. Spring can often mean a soggy ground, so flip-flops or heels are not the best choice. Instead, wear something that’s comfortable and spring appropriate, like loafers, flats or boots.

Kierra Sheard presents The Eleven60 Pop Up Shop in Washington, D.C.

I had the pleasure of working with Kierra “Kiki” Sheard and the Eleven60 girls to capture their Pop-Up Shop at the Donovan Hotel in Washington, D.C. This was a five city tour to promote her clothing line for plus-sized women.  Kierra is an amazingly sweet person, so fun and down to earth.  It was such a pleasure working with someone who is so relatable, kind and appreciative.   This is definitely one of the reasons I don’t consider my job work.   Supporting and promoting independent artists and business owners is so rewarding!  I love my clients!

Check out the  Video clip.

And check out Eleven60’s website!

Until next time…

Whatever your creative vision is, pursue it and put it into action!  Be.

Tye Tribbett at Howard Theater with Charles Butler and Trinity, Jeremiah Hicks and Alvin Campbell

It’s always a pleasure working with such hi-engergy and passionate singers.  Stellar nominated group, Charles Butler and Trinity are local DMV gospel artists with whom I’ve had the pleasure of working with and supporting on several occasions.  It is always a wonderful time working with the very humble and hilarious Charles Butler, Jr.  His group is filled with equally amazing and powerful singers.  The show was phenomenal and a first in selling out a gospel show at The Howard Theater in Washington, D.C.  Artists also included Alvin Campbell, Jeremiah Hicks and Tye Tribbett.

This was definitely an extremely high-energy show and a night to be remembered.  Click here for the Video.

QUEENS

Flashback post:  March 2014.  This was my first time visiting the new Anacostia Arts Center in S.E., D.C.  I came to capture some videos and photos of the event for my good friend “Mr. Briggs”.  I ended up meeting several great people that night, whom  I still keep in contact with and have developed great partnerships with.  This was my second time hearing several of the “queens” that night (i.e., Tamika Love Jones & Violet Marley), but a first hearing Maimouna Youssef.  I was intrigued by her delivery, vocals and lyrics;  particularly her cover for Lorde’s “Royals.”  Her version is re-entitled “We’re Already Royal” (Check out the video)!  What an empowering woman, great singer, writer, and lyricist.

Here are a few photos and a video link.

Gateway DC – Summer Film Series

I love doing meaningful work!  I rarely consider photography “work”, but occasionally it requires long hours, lots of sweat, patience and stamina.  I love events that don’t feel like a “job”, and this was another one!   The Ward 8 Arts and Culture Council sponsors many cultural events in Washington, D.C. in an effort to promote cultural awareness through the arts.   On this particular Wednesday, we were able to explore the works of a family of local artists and create masterpieces of our own.  All of the events are kid and family-friendly.  So art and water it was; no wine.   Gateway DC features movies, live music, vendors, food, art and fun for the community.  It’s always great to work with and around great people who are just as passionate about what they do as I am.

 

Queens for Kings

I LOVE live music and enjoy capturing the passion of this art in my photographs. I love working with independent artists and introducing myself to new sounds and underground talent. For Father’s Day, a few local D.C. artists gave tribute to fathers/ “kings” and brought down the house!

That night, I had the pleasure of capturing photos and video of the soulful sounds of Violet Marley, Andaiye, Tamika Love Jones, Ayanna Gregory and Afi Soul. These women have amazing talent and gracious personalities. It was a pleasure to be in great company and enjoy great music!