I just wrapped my very last photo session at the Rascals to Rebels Boutique. They close their doors on Friday after 15 years in the community. I’ve been working with them since 2008! It’s bittersweet because the store will continue to have an online presence with the hope of also doing special events.
So that you don’t shed too many tears, take a look at these cutie pie sisters there were there over the weekend!
Kristin Eldridge is a Los Angeles Child Photographer, servicing Long Beach, Orange County and LA.
Family Photographer Orange County // Timing is everything
I love when we can add things into a photo session that make it exciting! This time, it was these amazing vintage bikes. The twins had received them as a gift, so their mom so kindly lugged them out to the park so we could play around with them. I love how they bring such brilliant smiles to the children’s faces.
Of course, with a session like this we start with the family portraits and all the necessary things. Then at the very end we bring out the bikes. It’s funny how you don’t think of things like this until you’re a mom or until you’ve had it happen to you as a photographer. If you bring out the ‘fun thing’ and let them play, then say, now we’re going to sit down for some photos, you’ll be greeted with a hearty, ‘no thank you.’
I love having unique locations for my photo sessions. There are so many photographers in Southern California, that it’s nice to be set apart and have locations that not everyone is going to. Although, once I find a great location, I use it until I don’t feel inspired by it and then move along! So, what goes into finding a great location? Here’s a few tips that I’ve learned along the way.
1. Drive around. This may sound basic, but it’s important to keep your eyes open as you’re driving around the city. Sometimes I’m able to set apart a chunk of time for the sole purpose of location scouting, but other times I find spots as I’m doing my daily routine or maybe on the way to a client’s home.
2. See all the parts and the whole. There are times when I’m looking for a location with a sweeping landscape. I also use spots that are tiny little nooks of gorgeousness. I’ll often have clients tell me, “I never would have SEEN what you saw in this location.” So, determine what you’re needs are (big views or a little areas when you don’t need to move around and are mainly doing close-ups.)
3. Which leads me to my next tip- Ask your clients to trust you. It helps when you have a few years under your belt. But, you want your clients to feel comfortable at the location. So, if you’re leading them to an area they are unsure about and they don’t know you enough to trust your vision, it will come across in their expressions.
4. Go to the location at the time of day you are planning to photograph there. Lighting is key, so you want to make sure you’ll know what to expect. There are certain locations that I know I can only use the morning or afternoon. Some locations will work any time of day.
5. Be prepared for anything. One time I went to a location and they were renovating it (unexpectedly). I had to quickly come up with a plan B because I had back to back clients planning to arrive. I try to have a back-up location and client’s numbers programmed into my phone, so I can think quickly and be ready for changes.
I hope that helps! And if you’re wondering where this fabulous location is…these abandoned railroad tracks run throughout the city of Cerritos, CA. Another one of those times where I was driving around and noticed this out my window.
Orange County Family Photographer // How I Scout for Locations
You know that shy feeling you get when you meet someone for the first time? Kids get that too. When they come into my studio with their brand new baby brother or sister, they’re checking me out. Deciding if I’m likeable.
I usually start out by telling them what we’ll be doing. I tell them how we’ll be holding the baby and how important it is to hold up his head. Things like that. I’m kind of in teacher mode. (Side note: I used to be a first grade teacher!)
Once I get the shot set up, I want to surprise them. I want them to be giggly and add a little life to the photo. So, I do something like ask if they think that baby brother has a poopy diaper. That usually gets a laugh to start. Then we might go into scenarios of what would happen if he pooped on… Sometimes, they’ll offer up stories and the laughs don’t stop.
From there, I’ll try to get a soft and sweet shot, so something like kissing the baby will wrap things up. Toddlers can do something like count the babies toes or look at his hair if they are too young to kiss on command.
But, potty talk. It works every time.
Long Beach Newborn Photographer // Tips for Photographing Babies and Siblings
Have you looked around lately? Have you noticed how green everything is!? The fact that we finally got some rain in Southern California is making it even more beautiful than normal. It’s the perfect time to do Spring mini-sessions.
I’m setting up 2 different locations…one in Orange County (Trabuco Canyon to be exact) and one in Los Angeles (Temescal Canyon specifically). Both are green and gorgeous right now.
Here’s the details…it’s $100 session fee to hold your spot. The sessions are about 20 minutes with a little buffer time in between clients. Then you’ll pay an additional flat rate for all your digital images, depending if it’s just the kids or the whole family. Click here for all the details.
March 28 4:30, 5:00, 5:30 6:00 Trabuco Canyon
March 29 3:00, 3:30, 4:00, 4:30 Temescal Canyon
Kristin Eldridge holds Spring Mini-Sessions in Orange County and Los Angeles.
Whenever a client has a Dutch-style door, this type of photo is a MUST. I just love little ones hanging out the perfect little perch of a seat. And I love it when families are photographed in their home.
The one year photo session. It gets a little tricky because maybe the last time you saw them, they were a chubby little sitting baby. Maybe they were just trying out their crawling moves. At one year (or a bit older), they are GO. GO. GO. And there’s a reason I put those in all caps. Those new to walking, want to WALK.
So, I enlist the help of mom or dad. I love this series because his dad was threatening to tickle. We would time it out so he would run in for the tickle, laughs would ensue and we’d start all over again. I got real smiles, authentic expressions and he was still, while waiting to be tickled. Win-Win.
Long Beach Baby Photographer // One Year Old Photo Session
Beyond good lighting and composition, what makes a good photo? Emotion. We all know that fake smile kids give. Yes, their eyes are open. They are looking at the camera. BUT, it’s dead. There’s no emotion to draw in the viewer.
This is where your photographer comes in. The photographer needs to know when to interact and when to be a silent observer. It’s different in every situation. sometimes a situation calls for words like ‘poopy diapers’ to be thrown around. Other times, photographers notice something that is happening and they don’t want to be noticed. This is where maybe a more serious emotion might be happening.
One thing I’ve learned is that it helps to have something to interact with. In the case of these photos, it’s their dog. They love Louie and he gave us something to laugh about and someone to cuddle with. So be creative, how can you draw out emotion?
Family Photographer Los Angeles // Drawing emotion out in a photo