Oct 2014 28

It’s the time of year when our thoughts turn to doing dramatic images.  There’s a lot of different ways you can add drama to your images from lights, to post production, to fog machines. That’s right.. we said fog machines. Fog gives your images a  theatrical appearance.  So we asked an expert about the dramatic look of fog and how to add it to portraiture. Here’s Jessica Kaminski of Jessica Kaminski Photography and The Refinery with her best and most wicked advice.

1. Show it Who Is Boss

In order to get good contrast in your images, be sure not to let the fog get between you and your subject. The fog can dull your colors, so try to control it and keep it to the back and to the sides.


2. Strength in Numbers

Consider having someone act as a “Fog Wrangler” . Use something like a piece of foam core or a bounce board to gently fan the fog away from your lens, or back into your scene, as desired.


3. When in Doubt

Read the directions that come with your Fog Machine! Check whether or not you need to be mindful of fire alarms. Also, give it a test run. Some fog machines can fill a place up quickly, others take some time. So feel free to play with the settings and the space.


4. Control the Elements

Fog Machines don’t work well outside: if it’s windy or in a wide open area, leave your Fog Machine at home!


5. Get it on a Budget

Consider shopping for a Fog Machine right after Halloween when everything is on sale! If you are still not sold on the idea, try renting one first.

Thanks to Jessica Kaminski. Jessica has worked with the Milwaukee Ballet, she teaches photography boot camp courses and has won numerous awards. She is best known for her stunning and unique portraits.

All images for this article are Copyright Jessica Kaminski of Jessica Kaminski Photography.

Oct 2014 23

If you have little ones and observe Halloween, then you know all of the preparations that go into finding just the right costume.  As my children grow older, I realize how fun it was to go back and archive these moments and put them into an Adoramapix photo book keepsake.

In this week’s photo book design corner, we take a look at the options to build a spooky Halloween photo book.

We offer a few fun templates for Halloween. If you go to our inspirational gallery, you’ll see them under Holiday.

First is “Fright Nights”. This template offers fun clip art and is graphic heavy.


Our second template is “Happy Halloween“.  This template has more subdued graphics and is photo heavy.




If you prefer to go rogue, then we have all the elements you’ll need from pumpkins to spiders to build your photo book. Under the stickers section, simply search for Halloween and hundreds of stickers will avail themselves.


If you go to backgrounds, you can also search for Halloween or you can get even more specific and search for certain elements like spiders. Yes, we even have backgrounds with spiders in them.


We have several fonts as well, I find that Simpson and Freedom9 lend themselves well to more of a Halloween feel.

Whatever route you take, it’s important make these memories a keepsake with an Adoramapix photo book. Afterall, before you know it your Mr. T and Tinkerbell will grow up before your eyes and will no longer go door to door Tricking and Treating. So give yourself a treat this year and archive those precious memories into an Adoramapix photo book.


Oct 2014 07


We are once again proud to be a part of Photo Plus Expo in New York City. It runs from October 29th through November first and it is the largest photography and imaging show in North America.

We will be an exhibitor at the show and we hope you will make the plans to stop by our booth #929 October 30th and 31st. We will be showcasing our fabulous products and you’ll have a chance to see our new flush mount albums and papers for these photo books. If you are not able to visit us, follow our social media feeds for all of the expo action.

Plus, if you come down you can spin our Wheel of Prizes where everyone is a winner!


Oct 2014 07

The moon will pass through Earth’s shadow early Wednesday morning and lots of eager skywatchers will be set and posed ready to not only watch the lunar eclipse but hopefully catch a few snaps of it. It’s called the “blood moon”  because it will take on a coppery red look. It will look this way because of all the sunsets and sunrises from Earth reflect upon the moon.  However, if you’ve ever tried to photograph the moon, you know it’s not the easiest task to accomplish.  Here is a look at some of the best tips from around the web and from our own members on capturing the Blood Moon.


1. Go Big or Go Home

Start with the right lens. Anything under 200mm will make your moon look like a speck in the sky – the longer the lens the better. In otherwords, you want to close the distance between you and the moon.


2. Stable

The tripod is your best friend. Just like shooting fireworks, you’ll need to stabilize your camera. When you are using heavier lenses, you’ll need the tripod to not only keep take the weight off your hands but to ensure a clear, crisp sharp photo. Any type of movement can result in a blurry or soft picture.

3. Trigger

Just like the tripod will help ensure a sharper image, so will a remote or camera trigger. If you push the shutter, you can easily bump or move the camera causing a blur effect. If you are looking for the optimal sharp image, a tripod and camera trigger will are your best bet.

4. Placement and Timing

Make sure you find a clear view of the moon. Light pollution or the wrong timing can mess up your shot or not give enough time to adjust, and remember this is the last time this year you’ll get this phenomenal chance to catch it.  The next one is in April 2015.  According to Sky and Telescope, here are the times you can view the lunar eclipse in your time zone.



5. Settings

Start on Manual mode and bracket your exposure. Typically, if you are just photographing the moon with no foreground, then you’ll need to expose for the moon. If you want  to be more advanced and get some foreground in the shot as well, I found this great tutorial on Digital Photo Secrets on how to merge the foreground and the moon.  Next, set your ISO to the lowest you can whether it’s 100 or 200. The lower the ISO the more crisp your photo will turn out. According to the photography life website, you should set your aperture to f/11 and your shutter speed to 1/125 on cameras with base ISO 100, and to 1/250 on others with a base ISO of 200. This will net you the best results. That’s not to say you shouldn’t experiment this is just a good base to start from.


We hope these tips will help you with the lunar eclipse of the Blood Moon. What tips do you have?

-Written by Libby for Adoramapix from members and from the websites attributed in this article

-images from Shutterstock for editorial purposes



Sep 2014 28

Each month we like to take you beyond the pages of a member’s photo book. We find some of the most inspiring and interesting photo books that have us wanting to find out more about the journey it took to create such a memorable masterpiece. This month we sit down with Maya Sackheim and ask her about the book she made with her son. We hope their story will inspire you.

Real People. Real Stories. Real Inspiration.


I’m a mother of two teenagers.  My youngest, Jacob just turned 13.  He was diagnosed with Autism shortly before his second birthday and since then my life has been a journey to better understand him and his relationship with the world.  I decided to go back to school to get my Master’s in Early childhood special education so that I could better help Jacob, as well as to help other families who are navigating the world with children who are not like the other’s.  I teach in a special education kindergarten classroom now and love the work I do with the parent’s the most.  The children who don’t quite fit in are often the one’s with exceptional abilities as well.  It’s important to focus on what a child does well and not get stuck worrying about their challenges.


 The book began as a project I did for a class in graduate school.  I wanted to explain Jacob’s magical ability to connect to people in a non academic way.  At first it was just my own version of a collection of memorable moments that I shared with my son when he was smaller but he wasn’t happy with it when I read it to him.  He wanted to show me his memories so be began drawing pictures.  When I asked him to draw the subway, he looked at me like I was crazy and said “I could just take a picture, Mom!!” Eventually it evolved into a sort of a book.  The photo book became a tangible way to preserve those moments.



In the world of special needs, there is a persistent focus on the concept of developmental delay.  This language never felt accurate to me when discussing the needs of my own child who was diagnosed with Autism at the age of 2.  He wasn’t delayed.  He was just different.  He viewed and explored the world with an open non judgmental mind.  With this photo-book, I wanted to create a tangible way to celebrate his strength, which is in the way he is accepting and curious about all the people in the world around him.  It’s not really my story at all.  The experiences belong to Jacob.  The photographs are his and the drawings are his.  I just put it all together for him.  Children are taught (for good reason) not to talk to strangers.  Jacob knows and understands why this rule is in place but his genetic make up compels him to ask questions and he is unable to filter what much of society might consider inappropriate questions.  I see this quality not as a flaw of character but one of Jacob’s great strengths.  He is able to see and accept all people, no matter their eccentricities.  He has taught me so much about what it is to be a part of the whole community without putting up blinders to those around us who do not conform to the societal norms.


It began as something for myself but as I have shared it with people, I have come to see that sharing Jacob’s experiences can help other’s reflect on their own strengths.  I am now hoping to explore possibilities of creating educational tools to accompany this book and finding ways to share the content with students and parents of children who for lack of a better phrase, “are not like the others.”


Thank you for sharing Jacob’s story with us and choosing Adoramapix to preserve these memories. Your photo book is a true inspiration.

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