Hi, all! I’m Monica Shulman and I am a photographer in New York City. I also write Ciao, Chessa! — a lifestyle blog focusing on art, photography and travel. Thank you Adorama for inviting me to share on your blog!
I’m a bit obsessed with creating gallery walls and I’ve decided that I need more walls in my home. The wall above the dresser in my daughter’s room was a sad, empty space that taunted me for months. I thought about leaving it blank but one rainy afternoon, while we were lying on the floor reading some of her favorite books, my girl stopped me and staring at her existing gallery wall she started calling out everything and everyone she saw in the photos. Soon this became one of her favorite activities. She walks around our apartment (especially in the kitchen), points at photos and talks about them and the people in them and I tell her the story of the day the photo was taken. I started thinking about the kind of pictures that I wanted to put up on that little wall and soon the stories started to unfold. I use Instagram (A LOT) to capture the moments of my life and with a toddler running around sometimes the iPhone camera is the only practical way to take pictures because I simply don’t have the time or the hands to use my dslr. And so the idea for my newest gallery wall started to form. I had never printed my Instagram photos before but I knew, after years of working with Adoramapix, that the quality would be amazing and would not disappoint.
I used my own gallery wall tutorial as a guide:
(1) get all the necessarily materials (I LOVE painter’s tape)
(2) choose the frames and photos
(3) frame your wall using painter’s tape
(4) choose a layout, and finally
(5) hang the frames
The best part of creating this wall was choosing the images and once I decided that I was going to print pictures from my Instagram feed the fun really began. I love mobile photography because it has allowed me to take photography in general less seriously all the time. For the first time ever, as a photographer at least, I have finally learned to relinquish a bit of control (just a little) and in doing so I’m actually having more fun and have gotten better at capturing quiet, spontaneous moments and the images that I chose for this wall illustrate that. All of the photos are taken from behind or above when my daughter didn’t know that I was there, when she was in her own world, doing something wonderful and fun – jumping in puddles, running fearlessly toward the waves, sleeping peacefully in her beloved crib. I’m always, always there with her, watching her, letting her run and encouraging her to be adventurous and live playfully, even when (perhaps especially when) she doesn’t know I’m right behind her.
I’d highly recommend printing some of your favorite phone photos. If you think about it, these are the times when you feel the least self-conscious about your photo-taking skills because after all, it’s just a phone. The majority of my favorites happen to be Instagram pics but the idea behind mobile phone photos is the same…they are real, seemingly inconsequential but actually quite meaningful moments. I used Adoramapix and the prints look great in the 10×10 and 5×5 size.
I’m curious to know what you think. Do you have any tips for creating gallery walls or favorite apps for your iPhone or android? Share them in the comments!
Newborn photography takes a lot of patience. This is no surprise to the photographers who specialize in newborn photography. Sessions can last anywhere from a half an hour up to four hours. This is one photography specialty where the client is in complete control. For those of you just starting in this category, there are a few things to keep in mind when capturing those tiny clients. Here is our 5 tips on photographing newborns
Newborns are not able to regulate their body temperature. Keeping babies warm helps them stay healthy and comfortable. So with this in mind, you’ll be able to have a successful baby photo shoot. Typically, start with them all bundled up. You might also want to think about warming up your studio or bringing in a space heater to warm up the area. When doing photos of the baby without clothes, start by undressing them and laying them with their diaper on (but unhinged) and resting skin on skin on their mom or dad with a blanket over them. This way when you transfer them from their parent to the set up, you are also transferring that heat with the blanket over them. Let the baby get settled in before taking off the diaper or transferred blanket.
2. Know their Happy Times
Babies have happy times. Typically it’s usually right after they feed or they wake up. Identifying these times will typically lead to a better photo shoot. Newborns rarely have control over their muscles including smiles, so if you or the parent are waiting for the baby to smile, know that it’s rare to get these and in fact a lot of those smiles come in their sleep. The main objective is to make the baby comfortable.
3. Get a Close Up
Those eyelashes, those cheeks and those tiny fingers and toes are so important at this stage. Change your lens out from a portrait to a macro. Focus on all those little details, which will never be this small again. I personally, like the photos that show the scale of their tininess. These detail shots also make for a great addition when you are putting together a photo book for your client. Fill those pages with portraits and details and you’ll have an ecstatic client.
4. Lights, Sound and Action
Babies are very sensitive to noises and light. So with this in mind, you’ll want to be prepared. Try diffused light when photographing babies. In other words, try window light. If you must use strobe, then I would find the biggest softbox you can find to diffuse the light as much as possible. The main thing is to not keep flashing a strobe in a baby’s face. Choose your shots carefully. As far as noise, they love constant soothing noise. There are free apps out there that can provide you with white noise. Remember, it was very noisy in the womb for babies and they tend to like muffled white noise to comfort them.
5. Get the Siblings and Parents Involved
This is such a special time for the whole family. Now is the time to get them involved. Have a sibling kiss the baby’s forehead. Have the parents kiss the toes or fingers. It’s fun to see how proportional the baby is to the rest of the family. Remember, from this day on, this is the tiniest the baby will ever be again.
There is one other tip that was not included but it’s probably the most important, patience. Newborn photographers have the patience to wait for the baby. Babies have a way of not doing what you want them to do, so relax and be patient. This is the baby’s shoot and he or she is running it. You just need to know what the baby needs and make sure they are comforted at all times. This will ensure a happy baby, happy parents and a happy photographer.
Special thank you to Milwaukee newborn photographer, Christine Plamann of Christine Plamann Photography for supplying us with the adorable photos. You can check out more of her work on her website or blog.
We are excited to announce our first Adoramapix Instagram Video Contest!
Through the month of August, we want to see you post an Instagram video of what it’s like to open an order from Adoramapix. Show us your photo books, your prints, your canvas, your metal and your excitement! Making videos on Instagram is easy! We’ll have 6 winners. The most creative winner chosen by Adoramapix judges will receive a $250 Adorama gift card. Five entries with the most “likes” will win a free 16×16 metal print.
Tag your videos #adoramapix
Contest runs from August 1 – August 31- 2013
(This contest is 0pen to US residents only, Adoramapix 2013 Contest Rules and Regulations apply)
We love to see how creative our members get with our products. Each month, we will showcase ways to be inspired and artistic. This month we focus on a simple > than $4.00 frame for your prints.
If you are like me, I constantly love to change my photos out. I also love to mix vintage with modern. I was at thrift store the other day and noticed a bag of wooden hangers for $1.99. I noticed a gem in there with a true vintage wooden hanger. I bought the bag and headed off to a craft store to find some binder clips with modern patterns. I found 6 of them for only $2.00. It was easy to clip the image to the hanger by just opening the clip. Be warned though, this will leave a dimple in your picture. Pictures that work best for most of these regular hangers are 11x14s or 12x12s are excellent too.
As far as hanging them, they are very light weight so all you need is a finishing nail.
If you have any creative ways you display your Adoramapix images, feel free to show us! Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll showcase your ideas. Make sure to follow us on Pinterest for more inspirational decorating.
The days are getting shorter and the nights cooler. We are in the month of September and that means we are transitioning from summer to fall. Hopefully, at this point you have started printing your summer memories. If not, let’s get those images off your phones and computers. Here are a few quick and easy decoration ideas you can implement in your own home.
1. Maps and Pictures
One of my favorite projects I started this year is taking a picture of my children in the different states we visited. I found an old atlas, tore out the pages, laminated them and then went to Home Depot to have the wood (frames) cut. I picked a red/brown stain to match my home and I taped the picture to the map. Since it’s laminated, it won’t tear the map and I can always move it or add to it as the kids get older. Yes, the bigger plan here is to get the children in all 50 states and have a separate map for each state displayed.
2. DIY Frames
Children and adults constantly pick up tokens from trips including sand and seashells. Why not incorporate prints with those tokens? Simply find a square vase if you have it, if you don’t most thrift stores have these for a bargain. First, pour the sand in to anchor the image. Place the image into the sand. Then drop your shells around the picture. You have an instant contained shadow box.
3. Photo Book It
Part of the fun of summer is archiving those special family moments. If you went camping – why not dedicate a book solely to this excursion? AdoramaPix Member Rivka shows us how she documented her family camping trip with a photo book. She broke it down into days and times and included a lot of the little extra items that we sometimes forget are special when it comes to camping. The end result is a great souvenir from a place that does not sell souvenirs.
4. Burlap Twist
Looking to spice up your canvas? I made a quick 8×8 canvas and took some burlap and stretched it around a frame. It’s a 9×12 frame. I then put some tab hangers on the side panels of the canvas and a decorative hook at the top. I simply put some string on the tabs and hooked them to the hanger on the burlap. I love the 3-D look. Plus it’s easy to change out if I decide I want to change the decor.
5. Pin It
Want to display more than just one print? Easy – go to your nearest craft store and pick out a few clothes pins that are sturdy. You can decorate them however you like and your kids will love to get involved. From washi tape to glitter, your clothes pins can be as unique as your pictures. You’ll want to make sure the prints are in direct proportion to your image. Here I chose 4×4 instagram prints.
These are just a few simple and easy ways to display your summer prints. We hope this will inspire you to print your memories with us and make your house a home.
-Written by Libby for Adoramapix
-Images by Libby for Adoramapix