Category: Tips

bridal photography cambridge

Tips for Your Wedding Day

bridal photography cambridge

After your wedding is over, your wedding photographs will be the part of the day you can look at to remember how special a time it was.  Here are some tips that will help us get you the very best wedding photos we can for you:

Hair & Makeup

  • Please consider avoiding glossy lipsticks and mineral makeups, and consider using foundation or a powder to minimize shine.   As someone who generally doesn’t wear makeup myself, I totally understand if you choose to go all natural, these tips will just help a bit in case it’s super hot or we are using flash.
  • If your hair will be down, consider having a style where the sides are pinned up so your hair doesn’t cover your face.

During the Ceremony

  • Please consider having an “unplugged” ceremony — asking guests to put away their phones and cameras and enjoy being in the moment with you.  Not only will this be a more enjoyable experience for your guests, but it will also help us be able to get shots of those crucial moments without a sea of cameras and phones in front of us 🙂
  • Please let us know what special traditions will be included in your ceremony (special candle lighting, glass smashing, etc) so we can be best prepared to capture them!

Formal Portraits

  • Don’t worry — “formal” doesn’t have to mean stuffy — we will have a lot of fun during these.  Sometimes I’ll use some silly prompts or play some silly games to get everyone relaxed and looking their best.
  • Please appoint a friend or relative to be the official gatherer of people — family portraits go much faster when everyone who needs to be there is nearby!
  • We ask that people not involved in the portraits being taken not take photos during the formal portraits — it can be distracting as the people being photographed are sometimes distracted or not sure which camera to look at.   The more people who are around during this portion, the longer it can take to complete.
  • We generally advise allowing 4-5 minutes per grouping.  The amount of time we take for group portraits will depend on how many groupings you want to fit in.
  • The portraits of you and your beloved will just include the two of you, the photographer, and the photographer’s assistance if applicable.  We ask for 45 minutes for this portion.

Reception

  • It can be helpful to schedule the “events” (dances, cake-cutting, bouquet toss, etc) early in the reception to ensure they take place within the booking time with the photographer.
  • Please let us know what special traditions you will be including in your reception so we can be best prepared to capture them!

 

Most importantly, have fun, and enjoy your special day — that is the best way to get to best wedding photos 🙂

Summer Family Photo Ideas


Spring is in full bloom and it feels like we’re jumping right into summer! Warm weather brings good moods all around, so bring on the outdoor photo sessions! Now is the best time to get the family together to capture unforgettable moments – Check out my 5 tips below for the best photo ops this summer!

  • Head on over to the beach – A must-take and at the top of the list! We’re lucky enough to live by the coast, but whether you go to the beach every week or are going for vacation, be sure to get a photo of your toes in the sand. Wake up the family early for an early morning  photo session (your probably up anyways).
  • Have a family picnic at a local park – I just hosted our spring mini sessions at the Arlington Reservoir and it was the perfect day. Summer days will be no different, so pack a picnic and take photos with family over lunch in the park. You can bring flowers and bubbles for the kids for a dynamic photo session.
  • Go out for ice cream – Cool off… As if you needed a reason to enjoy your favorite ice cream! Run, don’t walk to your local ice cream parlor for the ultimate summer photos. I l love getting shots of food at special events and think it’s fun to incorporate this into a summer day.
  • Take photos outside of your home – With the plush grass and flowering trees, it’s nice to take photos at your home; Sit on your front steps or play a game in the back yard. Not only will you have memorable family moments, it’s nice to look back at your house to see how it changes over the years and from season to season.
  • In the pool – Summer is for relaxation – Grab your favorite pair of shades and lay back with a good book. Take photo of your family lounging by the pool or an action shot of the kids jumping into the water because this session definitely screams summer.

No matter where you take photos or what you do, remember to just have fun!

I absolutely love photographing the everyday and special moments.  I specialize in family photography and would love to help you this upcoming season for a fun, family photo shoot. Feel free to reach out if you want to set up your summer session! – mira@mirawhitingphotography.com



Thanks for reading!
-Mira

beading birthday part photos

20 Things to do During April Vacation

April Vacation is NEXT WEEK (can you believe it?!)  I’m gearing up for a week home with my kiddos and thought I would share some great things to do with kids for the week, or really anytime.

Things to do in and near Arlington for Vacation Week:

Remeber to take some great spring photos of your family and have fun!

Thanks, Mira

capture spring photos

Capture the Perfect Spring Photos!

Start your Spring off right with these photo tips

With all the snow storms hitting Boston, it may not feel like it. But spring is just around the corner! March 20th marks the first official day and I couldn’t be more excited. Don’t get me wrong, I do love snow-filled photo shoots. But I’m completely ready for spring backdrops and warm weather to be here.

To get you excited for warmer weather, I am sharing 5 fun tips on how you can capture the perfect spring photos this year. Try one or all five –

  • Kids jumping in puddles. Splashing in puddles is not only fun for your little ones, but it makes for a great photo op! The look of pure joy on their faces will make the mess worth it! Imagine your little one running around in a rain jacket and umbrella. We can, of course, save these photos for last!
  • Babies in a field of flowers – Newborns, toddlers, teenagers and adults for that matter! One of my favorite parts of spring are the new blooms the warm weather brings. Flowers make a stunning backdrop and whether you’re sitting in a field or walking through, the candids are sure to be amazing.
  • Pop of color or accessories – Break out that favorite spring dress or colorful outfit. Yellows, bright blues, oranges and pinks will instantly put a smile on your face for your photo shoot. OR add a flower crown for a fun addition.
  • Picnic in the green grass – What better way to celebrate spring that in a field of lush green grass? It’s a simplistic, yet beautiful backdrop.
  • Balloons – Whether your backdrop is water, a brick wall or a field of flowers, colorful balloons always make for a cute prop! The color contrast is perfect if you plan on sending out printed cards!

PLUS, I am excited to announce that I am now booking spring mini-sessions  on May 5th that will benefit the Peirce Elementary School PTO! Reserve your preferred time here!

Why You Should Be In The Picture Too!

Moms stay in the picture! Often moms are the ones behind the camera, capturing family moments. But you deserve to be in photos, and your children deserve to have photos with you, too!

Do often find yourself being the family photographer but are never in any of the photos?  If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone.  Most Moms (and some Dads too) take hundreds and hundreds of photos of their kids but opt to not be in the photo.  I’m here to tell you that you have to START making it a priority to be in photos. Not just for your sake, but for your kid’s sake.  How sad would it be to look back and have no photos of you and your kiddos?!

My three boys!

As a Mom of three boys I understand that not every moment is picture perfect.  Your hair is a mess. Maybe you have no make-up on. You have throw-up on you. Or perhaps you look tired. You feel fat… The list of excuses seems to go on and on.  While self-loathing is a concern, so is being able to physically get yourself in the photo.  Unless you’re a selfie pro, camera timer pro or can ask someone “can you take our photo” it can be really hard to get into the picture.

Using my remote shutter trigger to get in on a photo!

As a professional photographer, I’ve captured endless family photos, most that include Mom in them. And when we think about how little Mom is actually in the family photos. These professional photos become even more valuable. During all my photo sessions I encourage both parents to take an integral role in the photos. Mostly because I know how important these photos will be one day. Most moms are happy to be in the shot cause it’s not stressful and they’re prepped for the shoot knowing they will be in a photo.

The next time you’re thinking about booking a photography session think about the value of having a professional come and take photos of not just your kids but of your family. Including YOU! It’s a gift to yourself, your kids and loved ones you will never regret.

 

Check out all the happy moments below for some inspiration!

Why I Started A Photography Business

Small Business Saturday is right around the corner and it got me thinking about when I made the leap three years ago (November 2014) to start my own business. I often get asked why,  when,  and how did I get my start in photography.  It’s been an amazing three years and today I wanted to share more of my story and wisdom with you.   Let me know if you have any questions!

  • Why I got my start: I’ve always loved portrait photography since I was a young teenager.  Several years ago, I found I was being asked by more and more friends to take their holiday card photos, and I started looking into what would be involved in starting a portrait photography business.  One of the reasons I majored in history in college was that I loved learning about people’s stories, and helping to re-tell them, and this seemed like a fantastic way I could do that in a different medium.
  • Why I love it: My favorite part of having my own portrait photography business is that it’s never boring — there is always something new, and each client I work with brings a little of themselves to their portrait session, so even when I’m doing lots of the same type of portrait work it’s always a little different each time.
  • The biggest reward for being my own boss: I can pursue something I’m passionate about and truly chart my own course while still helping to support my family.
  • My advice for future business owners: Research, Research, Research!!  Do your homework and figure out what direction you want to go in, and it will be much easier to get there.

Here I am back in high school when my passion for portrait photography began! Thanks for letting me share my story with you.  It really makes me proud to be a small business owner.
~ Mira

Getting a Head Start on Holiday Cards

 

I know, we all think we have so much time to prep for holiday season until suddenly Thanksgiving shows up out of nowhere! GET AHEAD of this busy season so that you can actually enjoy your time off with family and friends.

If creating a holiday card is on your to-do list this year, I recommend scheduling your photo session during the fall. The foliage is perfect and the cold weather isn’t quite here yet, so an outdoor photo shoot is actually enjoyable! Not to mention, it’s great to get this done before it gets too dark out after work.

 

Once you your photo session is complete, there are endless options for creating print work. You can get your professional photos printed on blankets, canvases, calendars and more! This time of year, the most popular request I get is for fall photo shoots, so that families can use these photos for their holiday cards! Read my 3 tips below on how to design a holiday card people will love –

  • Coordinate your outfits – You don’t have to match exactly, but if your family comes dressed in cohesive fall colors, your photos will look even better when printed!
  • Make it simple yet eye catching – Don’t over clutter your card with a collage of 10 photos. Clean and simple doesn’t necessarily mean boring, but choose 1-3 of your favorite photos to highlight, will make your card stand out.
  • Use quality materials to print – If you’re investing in a professional photographer to take your photo, it’s worth it to use quality paper to print your card on. There are also ways to spruce up the overall look with foil stamping or embossing.

 

Need help designing and printing your cards? Check out my 5 go-to sites for printing holiday cards –

Check them out and see which one seems like the best fit for you! A lot of these websites will send the holiday cards directly to your address list, so you can save time by stuffing envelopes.

Thanks for reading and feel free to reach out if you would like to get a head start on holiday cards by booking your fall photo shoot – mira@mirawhitingphotography.com

 

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{Tips} Get organized! Organizing your digital photos

 

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We all know the feeling — your kid is doing something ridiculous or adorable (or both!) and you pull out your phone to snap a quick picture of it only to get an error message — no more space!  Or you carefully put everything on your computer, but then your hard-drive fails.   Or you need to use some pictures for a project and can’t find that picture you know would be just PERFECT because you don’t have a good filing system.  And while the problem of thousands and thousands of images to sift through is exacerbated by the ease of taking so many images with digital photography, most of the tips below would apply just as well to the shoebox of photos you’ve been meaning to sort through since your days taking pictures with film.

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of teaching a photo organization class at Diaper Lab in Davis Square.  There were a bunch of people who were interested in the class, but weren’t able to make that particular time.  I’m hoping to do the class again in the future, but in the mean time, here are some tips to get you started on your organization journey.

Culling ~  A Vital First Step

Culling — a nice way of saying that you’re deleting the images you don’t need, is absolutely vital before you get started with any other aspect of organizing your photos.  It’s hard, but it’s really important to let go of the idea that every image is precious.  If too many images are cluttering up your digital space, you won’t be able to easily retrieve the ones that truly make your heart sing.  What should you get rid of?

  • Duplicates — with rapid-fire shutters, you can take a dozen images in a matter of seconds.  Pick the best of the series and chuck the rest (or if it’s a truly entertaining series, with your child making different expressions, for instance, pick at most three).
  • Blurry/out of focus images — keep only the images that you will want to look at and best show what you’re trying to remember.  If it’s too blurry, you won’t even remember what it’s a picture of in a few years!
  • “Postcard pictures” —  When I go on vacation, before I take a picture of the scene before me, I ask “is there something unique about this?  Could I buy a postcard of this exact same thing?  If the answer to that second question is yes, it’s not worth taking your own — just buy the postcard!   Focus your pictures on the things that you will want to remember about the trip — your loved ones in the location, doing things together, the people you meet (Ok, this is totally my bias a portrait photographer showing, but I still think it’s a valid point!).
  • Think — will I want to see this in 25 years?  If the answer is no, don’t hesitate to delete!

You can make exceptions — one of my all-time favorite pictures of my middle son is a bit out of focus and I kept it anyway since it was such a perfect capture of him at that age — but make them rare so you can really focus on organizing the images you really want to keep.

Filing — Where do you put it all?

Once you’ve culled, the question then becomes how to keep track of what you’ve kept.  Most people use a theme-based (“Our family vacation” “Jacob’s birthday party”) or chronological-based (“2017 pictures”) or some combination thereof  (“2017: January: Family Vacation”).  Figure out how your brain likes to retrieve information and go for it!  The important thing is to be consistent.

Start with your images going forward, and then spend 10-20 minutes a day or so working on filing your older images according to your new system — you don’t have to do it all in one go.

Printing — Why? What? How?

  • Why Print? Why not just keep everything as a digital file?  Digital files are fundamentally not archival — it’s incredibly easy to have files become corrupted, or for media to become obsolete.
    • I like to tell the story at this point of my own wedding photos — we got them on CD.   I recently purchased a new computer, and realized that none of the laptops I was looking at had an optical drive.  I was incredibly glad I’d made a printed album of our favorite wedding images so I can enjoy them for decades, and my grandchildren will be able to as well even without the ability to read that CD.
    • Hard drive failures are also fairly common.  If you’re very lucky your files may be recoverable, but as one of the families who attended the class found out recently, it can cost thousands of dollars to go through that process (and it’s often not possible at all).  The mom who was telling me this story was horrified that she could have lost all the pictures of her children’s early years to that hard drive failure.  You can back up, but nothing is as archival as acid-free paper.
    • Aside from the loss of your images entirely, there is also the issue of visibility.  You should be able to enjoy looking at your photos!  Just tucked away on your computer they aren’t visible the way they are on a wall or in an album.  If you have children, there have also been some studies about visible family photos helping to boost children’s self-esteem, and I know I’ve seen that in my own family:  my kids will often request a photo album as a nap or bedtime story — they love seeing themselves in the pictures and hearing our family’s story and their part in it.
  • What to print?  The two most common things to print are pictures for your wall or albums — which you pick will depend on which you prefer and how much space you have — there isn’t a right or wrong answer here!
  • How to print?  It’s so overwhelming!
    • For the wall:  Every month or two, go through your images (after you’ve culled!) to pick a few favorites.  Put those favorites in a folder, and go through them deciding what to print and  what sizes at the end of the year — you’ll only have a couple of dozen images to choose from rather than hundreds, so it’ll be a much quicker process.
    • Albums:  Similar in theory to the wall prints strategy — every month or two take 20-30 minutes and do that month’s pages in an album for the year (many online album makers allow you to save your work over time).  When you get to the end of the year, you’ll just have December pictures to put in, and then you’ll have your album for the year done.
    • For both of these the real trick is to do it a little bit at a time throughout the year so it feels less overwhelming.  Several of the attendees at the class last most mentioned that they felt overwhelmed going back and printing out their old pictures — start this way going forward and take 20 minutes a few times a week to start working backwards to the older pictures — you’ll get it done eventually if you chunk it into manageable pieces!

I hope this is helpful!  Please stay tuned for more tips, and news on when the class might run again!