As a newborn photographer, I find myself educating clients about sessions and all the options they have throughout the process. One of my most asked questions is about the difference between lifestyle sessions and studio sessions. The biggest difference is where they take place.
Lifestyle sessions are a beautiful opportunity to capture life in your home with your new little joy, just as it is. There are no props or wraps brought to a lifestyle session. Instead we use that new blanket from grandma, or a special outfit that dad picked out himself. We cuddle on the bed (you, not me) and inspect fingers and toes, share kisses of joy and marvel at your newest little addition.
If a posed newborn session isn’t quite what you had pictured your story looking like, think about an in home lifestyle session. Simple and classic for a timeless addition to your story. I was able to enjoy just that with baby Evan and his family the other week. Every newborn story brings a smile to my heart wherever they take place. Thank you for having me M family, and congratulations again!
If you are expecting and would like to connect about your newborn photography experience, please follow the link below to chat!
This little dude was in the studio just before the new year for his newborn session. We are still waiting on a few of his prints to arrive before we officially complete this newborn photography experience. Until then, I have been enjoying sharing his images as often as possible, I even made a little preview video!
Most newborns visit me around 10-20 days old. But Michael came into the studio at 5 weeks old, just one day shy of his actual due date. We waited each out to see who would give in to sleep first (if you’re wondering, mom and I beat out baby M and dad – ha!) and the rest was history. Every babe is a little different, but having to wait for sleepy eyes is usually the same from session to session though. I am always reassuring moms and dads that it’s completely normal and all part of the process. Which is also why I encourage parents to nap during our time together if they want… and let’s be honest. Who wouldn’t want a nap a week (or 5!) after bringing home a newborn??
If you are expecting and would like to connect about your newborn photography experience, please follow the link below to chat!
Joe and I have been married for a little over three years. We both adventured through several different work places (part-time and full) while pursuing lofty career goals. Him law school and myself, a photography studio in Downtown Appleton. I started my photography business shortly before our wedding and have since moved it from one state to another and quickly back again. Joe is currently starting his fourth semester of classes in Nashville and I’m hanging out with all the babies I can get my hands on in Appleton. Our time together is valuable. Every chance I get I snap a selfie of the two of us, or sneak a picture of just him so our days are documented as much as possible.
The last time we were in front of the camera together was two years ago (our one year anniversary). After that it’s snippets of images from a dinner out, or a quick snap from that time we took a walk together. Or the one time I turned my big camera on us for our Christmas card and set the timer… that was a real process trying time everything just right. HA!
I have a challenge for you. Think about your lives around this time last year. Where were you living and working? Were you carting around kiddos to school and extracurriculars or teaching little ones to tie their shoes? Did you set any goals for the year ahead? Were they personal or did you tackle them with your spouse? Home improvements? Trips planned and enjoyed? Did you say goodbye to a loved one? Welcome a new babe? How much did your life change from this time last year, to now? Do you see a difference?
Now think back to the last time you stepped in front of a camera together, just you and your sweetheart. Not a quick snap and done. When is the very last time you spent quality time investing in images of just the two of you. Enjoying each others hugs and hand holding? Your favorite picture of the two of you that is displayed in your home… when was it taken? 5 years ago… 10… Your wedding day? Are you ready for another favorite picture?
I’m not sure I could ever have enough pictures of just Joe and I. We work hard for our relationship, especially in this chapter of our lives and I want to remember that. Your story is equally as important and my hope is that you document it as well. We all work so hard for love, celebrating it is necessary!
Sweetheart Mini Sessions
Appleton WI || February 5-9, 2018
30 Minute Session
Online Ordering Gallery
Last week Monday as I was leaving the house for the day I took serious note of the weather. It was cold enough for a light snow to be falling, but warm enough that my fingers and nose didn’t immediately freeze as I stepped out the door. But most noteworthy was that the sun was poking in and out from behind the clouds creating a magical wonderland of glitter flying about.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the photography profession as of late. The winter season brings a slow down in scheduling which allows most photographers to evaluate the year that has past and the one coming up. The year ahead is a mystery for me and Caitlin Claire Studio. I can’t say that I have ever felt so lost, yet so completely confident in the direction I’m heading. Photography sort of fell into my lap and I’ve let it evolve in an organic manner from the beginning. I adore photographing families and newborns, that passion will only grow stronger I’m sure.
What I’m realizing more and more is the impact one person can have in their community when they want to. That’s the key… you have to want something before you can manifest it’s reality. When I stepped outside last Monday, I had a deep sense of wanting to photograph someone in that wonderland. Thank heavens for friends like Dana who are ready and willing to jump (or dance) when the opportunity arises. If you have a dream you have to let the universe do some of the work, that’s called luck. The rest is up to you because good luck will never substitute hard work.
What seems like eons ago now, Christina reached out to me inquiring about bridal portraits after she ran across this blog. Her and Scott had eloped earlier in the year but were planning on bridal portraits at the Paine Art Center and Gardens during the Nutcracker display. A few years back, I visited the Nutcracker for the first time and brought my camera along to document it. I’m so glad I did because it lead me to meeting these newlyweds!
I couldn’t contain myself for very long and was thrilled to be a part of the whole experience with them. If you haven’t been to the Paine during the Nutcracker, don’t miss it next year! The magic you feel while strolling through the rooms is pretty indescribable. So needless to say, photographing these two while we had the place to ourselves was a highlight of the year for me.
My favorite part of it all though, beyond the space that surrounded us, was meeting Scott and Christina. The fact that bridal portraits were still so important to them after their elopement really made my heart happy. Congratulations again you two, my world is brighter having met you and celebrating this wonderful year with you both!
Very seriously catching up on all of my Appleton Wisconsin Family Photos – gotta get the blog up to date! The Busse family and I spent an afternoon together this past summer at Appleton Memorial Park Gardens. The weather was spot on, we could not have asked for a better day!
I’m not always the best with blogging on a timely schedule, and this family shared a few weeks back that they are expanding by one little boy! I’m trying to formulate my words in a way I haven’t already used them to express my joy and awe at how fast life changes. I am not sure I know how to do it any differently than I already have. We seem to need constant reminder that life does not stay constant. Not constant good, or constant bad. Not constant at all. No constants over here or over there. I feel like Dr Suess a bit… haha!
How amazing is it that within a few weeks of this session, this family of three learned they would be soon be four?! These images capture a special time that will only grow more special as they add a new love to the mix. I’m so happy for you all – congrats again!
Connecting with families for their fall family portraits is one of my favorite times of the year. The colors are always so fun and the sunlight always seems extra special. I think what struck me most this year though, what how special family portraits, in and of themselves actually are.
As a professional photographer, one of hundreds if not thousands within driving distance from my studio doors, I am honored when a family inquires with me. Photography is a luxury service, one that might not happen each and every year for a growing family. I know this, because it doesn’t happen each year for my own. I often wonder how (and how much) to educate my clients about the value of photography and the special place it holds in my heart. Being part of this artistic community is a wonderful adventure. The pace at which technology has progressed is wild! But we are still artists at heart, sharing what we love to do with those who are ready and willing to stand in front of our cameras.
Someday, hopefully soon, I will spend some time jotting down more of my thoughts about just how dang great it is being a photographer. How working with clients fuels my soul and forces me to step out of my comfort zone to educate about this fast paced workforce that is so easily accessible to anyone who would like to join. But for now, I’m just going to revel in these beautiful family portraits and the magic of the season!
2 tbsp coconut oil or unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 large egg, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup pure maple syrup
½ cup fresh cranberries, chopped
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
Whisk together the oats, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the coconut oil, egg, and vanilla. Stir in the maple syrup. Add in the flour mixture, stirring just until incorporated. Fold in the cranberries and chocolate chips. Chill the cookie dough for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 325°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Drop the cookie dough into 15 rounded scoops onto the prepared sheet, and flatten to the desired thickness and width using a spatula. Bake at 325°F for 9-12 minutes. Cool on the pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.
An email went out last week to our newsletter list – did you hear!? Little Studio Sessions are open in December! I am returning home for the Christmas season and am looking forward to seeing some friendly faces in the studio. Before I scooted out of town last month, Auden came to visit for a Little Studio Session and I couldn’t help but mix in some seasonal props – hello beautiful pumpkins!
I’m going to go on a little trip here with these next thoughts so bear with me…
Every time I sit down to write a blog post in relation to a session I have, I have this desire to make it unique to the subject. But if I’m honest with myself and you, I don’t always have a whole lot to say about a one year old. I mean, really how much can I exclaim their cuteness and spunky attitudes? What usually comes to mind are thoughts about how special these pictures will be to mom and dad when their baby starts kindergarten, or has their first sleepover or passes their driver’s test! Time flies, even moreso when you have a little one. I think that’s why child portraiture has evolved so much over the past few years. (That, and the technological advances in camera gear… but I’m trying to pull your emotional heart strings here so let’s not think about that right now…)
Little or big, happy or ‘up since 4am’ frustrated, just learned to wave or took her first steps – these memories are all important. Being a photographer isn’t just about snapping a perfectly perfect picture. It’s about creating something tangible to hold in your hand 15 years from now to spark those memories.
This was a fun one with lots more to come after this post. But first let’s talk basics, because that’s what you’re going to see below. Char came to me with a need for updated and consistent images for her Etsy page, Lily Bean Giggles. Her shop is almost four years old and came about after the birth of her first grandchild. These clothing pieces are perfection, let me tell you! Her eye for detail and innovation (that double sided bib!!) deserve a place in every littles wardrobe.
As most of us know, Etsy shop images can make or break a sale in a matter of seconds, so I knew the importance of these images to her. We talked about keeping the styling to a minimum because buyers can easily interpret a sale of everything in the image, not just the featured product. We also decided to keep warm and welcoming tones consistent with the wood backdrop throughout the shoot.
Future images to come include littles modeling and possible flatlays incorporating multiple looks for one piece. As a content producer, I also find great value in adding more than product images. I love for clients to share favorite quotes or words that describe their brand to use when stimulating conversation. We might not always have something grand to talk about when posting to social media; let’s face it, the well runs dry on a regular basis. But these graphics of single words or phrases can help spur ideas, or fill in the blank on a quiet day all while still maintaining a presence online.
I can’t wait to see how she uses these new images outside of her Etsy shop. The world of online marketing is very wide, and I’m glad I was able to make it a little easier to navigate for her and her passion!