Valentine’s Day with my girl and why I LOVE shooting outdoors

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Josh and I don’t really celebrate V-Day by spending a bunch of money on things we will be over 10 minutes after receiving them.  I would be unhappy if he bought me cut flowers.  I prefer a plant that will last longer than a few days.  He got me a peace lily a few years ago that is still gorgeous.  Valentine’s Day was fun and exciting for us when we were a young, new couple.  He still has the little stuffed bear I got him our first year with a little t-shirt on that says “Melanie + Josh”.  It’s cute.  I also have the cardboard box that he covered with magazine cut-outs like roses, hearts, and other lovey dovey things, filled with cute lovey things, and sent to me here in PA from Iowa.

Now that we have Ada, of course I feel that Valentine’s Day is another great reason to take some portraits.  For this blog post, I thought I would discuss my preference of shooting outdoors over shooting inside.

First of all, I LOVE NATURAL LIGHT.  I prefer natural light in every situation.  When I shoot indoors, I try to get as much natural light on my subjects as possible.  That’s why my in-home studio is located in my living room on the first floor of my house.  There are 3 large windows and a door all facing the area where I shoot.  If it’s not too cold out, I open the door and have a full length glass storm door to let more light in.  Newborns fit perfectly in my home studio.  Mobile children are difficult.  The child has to stay within a small space where my 5’x7′ backdrop is and on my floor which might be 4-5 feet across.  Not easy!  You know what else is not easy?  Moving furniture, lugging backdrop stands, backdrops, floors, and props upstairs from my office and setting everything up.

Here are Ada’s Valentine’s Day photos for 2014.  One set is indoors which took me about 2 hours of set-up and break down, about an hour of shooting, and about 150 shots to get this many good ones.  The other set is just outside my backdoor.  It took about 5 minutes of getting Ada dressed, about 5 minutes outside in the snow (she got too cold and we had to go in), and about 20 shots to get this many good ones.  I don’t plan on doing another studio set-up for Ada in our home.  I will just wait for the temperatures to reach above freezing or take lifestyle photos of her in her own environment.  Right now, I do rent a studio if I need to for my clients (9 months +) who schedule their session for extremely cold times and need to have an indoor session.  I dream of having my own natural light studio outside of our home, and when I do it will be large enough to accommodate any age and even family portraits.  I can’t wait.

AND I know the session is done when she looks like this!  (See below)  🙂