June 27, 2012

Newborn Session Options {Austin Newborn Photographer}

I LOVE photographing newborns.  Maybe because it is the only time that a human will ever be that tiny.  Maybe because I adore watching a family interact with the newest addition to their family that they've been waiting to meet for so long.  Maybe because those sleepy little angels melt my heart. 

It is hard to believe my first newborn shoot was in January 2011.  Whoa have I come a long way since then! Newborn photography and posing is certainly an art and a science.  And I enjoy all that I am learning and able to portray through my images along this journey. 

I've spent countless hours studying up on newborn photography, invested in a lot of great props and posing items as well as several educational workshops, and I always challenge myself to continue learning as I go.  And this spring, I even had my very own newborn model to work with when I had my baby girl!  I tell you what... when photographers say newborn shoots are best within the first 2 weeks of baby's life, they aren't kidding.  Newborns grow and change so quickly after that point, (not to mention wake up a lot more) so it's great capturing images of them in their true state of "tiny."

I offer my clients two different types of newborn sessions, depending on what they are wanting.  (Sessions are the same price, but allow you to customize it to fit what you are wanting.)  Some people want a lot of images of just their tiny new addition.  While others really want images of the whole family interacting with the new baby, mom and baby shots, dad and baby shots, baby with sibling(s), and several shots of just the baby.  I love doing both types of sessions, and wanted to display some samples of what each session offers. 

OPTION 1: NEWBORN FOCUS - IN STUDIO: This session is focused 90% on the baby and 10% on the baby + family (or siblings).  We create a comfortable and laid back environment where you get to relax.  

OPTION 2: NEWBORN and FAMILY FOCUS: This session is focused 50% on the baby and 50% on the family. Some shots will be done indoors and others outdoors (if the weather is fitting). 

Don't these just make your heart melt?  The love that a family already has for a brand new baby is overwhelming in the sweetest way possible.  If you have any questions about my newborn photography and/or options, please contact me.  

June 26, 2012

Freezing Moments in Time {Austin Family Photographer}

I think one of the things that makes me a good photographer is that I totally relate to my clients in a lot of ways.  For those of my clients with children, I very deeply relate to their desire to freeze little moments in time and somehow, some way SLOW down their babies growing up.  Even if just for a moment.  And I absolutely love that I get to do just that for my clients (and for myself) through my camera and lens. 

See my previous post for a funny story about how the pictures of little Miles below came to be.  They were almost a (very) lost opportunity, and now they will be in a canvas gallery on my walls for many years to come.  Along with his tiny baby sister (that looks barely anything like this because she's already getting so big!).  The beauty of photography... it's the only thing I've found where we really can freeze time.  Even just for one sweet moment.  And then we get to reflect on it (and have our hearts melt at the same time) for many years to come.

This gallery is going up on my walls in a matter of days.  Melt...

June 25, 2012

Mama Mondays: Multi-Tasking is an Art

I have always been a multi-tasker.  If you ask my mom, she would probably tell you that I used to braid my hair while I brushed my teeth or something. 

And since becoming a mother in 2009, starting my business while working full time in 2010, and then becoming a mom of two this spring, my multi-tasking abilities have been put to use in ways I never even knew they could.

A few weeks ago, I enjoyed doing a maternity session with the beautiful Jessica and her adoring husband.  (Click here for their first photo shoot with me.)  We wanted to get the studio feel for portraits, but we also wanted to take advantage of the amazing wildflowers that were out.  (Does her hubby get brownie points for doing two sessions in one day or what?!)  So we did the studio session in the morning and followed up that evening with the wildflower location.  (And her husband said that it was even fun!)

Now, I am on working mama duty M-F from about 7am-7pm because my hard working hubby is at work.  So I told him, "Sweetie, on this night, I need you to meet us at this location (there was even a playscape for little Miles) to take over duties with the kids because I have a photo shoot."

It was such a beautiful night, and the multi-tasker in me thought, "I would love to get some pictures of Miles in the high chair I just refurbished and the wildflowers."  (The high chair was my Grandad's when he was a baby - over 90 years ago!)

So the kids and I arrived about 20 minutes early to do just that.  Picture this: Photographer lady carrying a tiny baby on her front in a carrier, a wooden high chair, a camera bag, and a prop bag walking about 50 yards with a two year old.  Fitness sure does come in handy!  Everything was going well (for the first 30-seconds) until it all of a sudden it wasn't.  My sweet boy didn't get to climb on the bike racks as he normally did, and he let me know about it.  (So picture this... now I'm still carrying all that stuff, trying to verbally convince my two year old to follow me so we can get some pictures of him. Uh huh. For real.)

So we're trekking through the grass (even having to pass by the playscape - try explaining THAT to a two year old!).  I get the high chair set up, put Miles in it, and then he gets attacked by gnats!  So now my poor sweet boy is itching and clawing at his face because the gnats are relentless, and his mommy on the other side of the camera is just praying for them to stop so he can be his usual smiley self.  Doesn't happen.  And I have learned just to let it go when it doesn't.  There will be another opportunity later.  (Thankfully, my daughter is fast asleep on my chest by this time in the baby carrier.)

It's now 7pm (the time my husband is to arrive to take over kid-duty).  Only he isn't there.  And I realized I forgot my cell phone at home.  Jessica and her husband arrive, so I call him on her phone.  He had totally forgotten about meeting us (and felt so badly about it), because he was dealing with an air conditioner being out at one of our tenants' apartments.  Uh!  So here I am with two kids (one of whom has had it and is ready to play) and a photo shoot about to start.

I knew my multi-tasking abilities were strong, so I had to put them to use.  As a photographer, when life gives you lemons, you make great photographs!  Thankfully, Jessica and her hubby and Miles go way back (they are huge Miles fans), and her hubby played with Miles at the play scape while I (wearing my 8 week old baby) headed into the wildflowers to get some great shots of Jessica.  And then we did couple shots.

Here are some of the beautiful shots we got.

And now... behind the scenes.  :) Never a dull moment with these two and my quest for balance being a work at home mom.  But do you know what?  I wouldn't have it any other way, because I absolutely adore these babies.  (I just don't take them on photo shoots with me.)  :)

And guess what?  I even got some sweet shots of Miles in the wildflowers afterwards, and the top picture below is a big canvas wrap in my livingroom and it is SO beautiful.  Makes my heart melt every time I walk by it.  So... you never know what you might get on camera... even when you're thrown lots of lemons!

June 18, 2012

A Little Miles of Smiles Photography Love from The O Family

From Katie... of The O Family...

"I received a gift card for a photo session with Miles of Smiles photography at my baby shower. This was such a creative and thoughtful gift, I would recommend the same if you are hosting a baby shower! 

Sarah was so wonderful to work with even from the start. She was very easy to schedule a session with, had amazing information on her website about props, clothing choices, FAQ, and had a great pre-session questionnaire to insure our session was perfect for us. 

The session itself was wonderful. She had the perfect spot picked out and brought everything we could have needed. Our daughter loved her and as a result we got pictures that we will always treasure. I loved that she worked so well with children (even bringing an adorable camera animal to make Caroline smile) and made the session unique to us.

She got our images back to us within a week, wrapped in adorable paper just like the gift they were. Her attention to detail is remarkable and we could not have loved our session more. I would highly recommend Miles of Smiles Photography and we will be returning customers. Thank you so much Sarah!"

Our Portraits are in RWG Offices {Austin Family Photographer}

I am so excited to say that my images are up and in action over at Renaissance Women's Group - in Dr. Mills' exam rooms.  It is such an honor having them there for RWG patients to enjoy, and it felt so good to see this project come to completion. 

It started with an idea  in my head, thinking of some of my favorite images, figuring out which ones would work well in groupings, finding the frames, framing the portraits, and then hanging them up with the assistance of my handsome hubby.  And like almost every aspect of my business so far, these two hands did the work.   (And let me tell you... after framing all of those portraits, these two thumbs were pretty sore from pushing in all those little framing tacks!)  :)

I have to say, waiting in those exam rooms will be a lot more fun now with all of these sweet faces to look at!  Dr. Mills told me she's already received so much sweet feedback about the images there.  Stepping back for a moment and seeing my images on those walls really gave my heart a "warm-fuzzy" moment.  To see a dream become reality is what this business is all about. 

Befores (top 1/2) and Afters (bottom 1/2):

Once a year "THE BIG SALE!" on Organic Bloom Frames

Ladies and Gentlemen,
The once a year "BIG SALE!" is on!  Our boutique (and AMAZING!) frames from The Organic Bloom are 25% off July 1st - 22nd!!  These are not your average frames!  They are truly the most fun and creative way to add color to ANY room in your home.  These frames are especially great in nurseries, bedrooms, living or dining rooms, play rooms, and offices.  The "BIG SALE" is available for those who can pick up frames from us (South Austin).  (The rest of the year, frames are available for anyone, as shipping is available.)

These frames make THE perfect gift for loved ones, so get your holiday and birthday shopping done early this year!

The Important Stuff: 
  • The "BIG SALE" is only offered once a year!
  • All orders must be received by Sarah by Sunday, July 22nd, 2012.  She will be placing one big order for all frames on July 23rd.  Frames take 5 weeks to arrive, and Sarah will notify clients when they are available for pick up. 
  • Payment by check to Sarah Jordan must be received along with order info by July 22nd, 2012.  Due to the custom nature of these products, all sales are final.  If there is a defect with your frame upon receiving it, please let Sarah know and she will contact The Organic Bloom.
Features of these frames: 
  • Available in over 50 amazing colors! 
  • Frames are available in 16 different shapes!  If you would like advice on layouts, sizes, shape combinations, etc. - email me, as I'm happy to help! 
  • They do not have glass, so there is no glare... just beautiful views of your favorite image from any angle.  Sarah will provide you with details on prints for these frames and where you can order them yourself.  We can also provide prints.  Just contact us.
  • Please add 8.25% Texas sales tax. 
  • After purchase, we'll provide customers with details on prints and how to best care for frames.
PRICING INFO for FRAMES: (These do not include prints.)
  • 5x7  / Normal Price: $60+tax / SALE PRICE: $45+tax
  • 8x10 / Normal Price: $75+tax / SALE PRICE: $56.25+tax
  • 10x10 / Normal Price: $90+tax / SALE PRICE: $67.50+tax
  • 11x14 / Normal Price: $140+tax / SALE PRICE: $105+tax
  • 16x20 / Normal Price: $225+tax / SALE PRICE: $168.75+tax 

Double stack and multi-opening frames are also available.  (See below for a sample.)  Contact us for pricing info.  Multi-opening frames are not part of this sale.

To place your order, email me at milesofsmilesphotography@yahoo.com with the following info: 
1) Your first and last name and phone number
2) The shape, color, and size of each frame.  Please put one frame on each line in email.  If ordering 
    double stack frame(s), please specify that as well.
3) Total price + 8.25% Texas sales tax
  • I will follow up with a confirmation email and the address where you may send payment.  Frames will be ordered July 23rd and take 5 weeks to arrive.  Once they come in, you will be notified and we'll find a convenient time for you to pick them up.  And they will adorn your walls and bring many smiles for years to come!

 Click on images to enlarge.  My favorite shapes: Audrey, Eva, Mary Ann, Gilligan, and Lucy.

June 17, 2012

Austin Senior Photographer {Elegant Emily - Senior Rep 2012}

She rocked our session.  If you want to be a Senior Rep like Emily (freebies!), contact me... applications are due mid-July!  Click here for details. 

June 13, 2012

Austin Newborn Photographer {Sweet Baby Elsie}

This 6 pound 11 ounce little lady was absolute perfection to work with!  After a few minutes, she fell right asleep and got an A+ at her first portrait session.  I just love the tiny-ness here, because as I know well (my baby girl is already 3 months old!) it doesn't last long.  But photographs sure do!

So sweet...

FREE WalkFit Class is Coming! Strollers invited. South Austin...

FREE WalkFit Class: Thursday, June 21st 8:45-9:45am

All right, Ladies... it's time to start your engines!  I'm back in action with my WalkFit classes after having my baby girl, and ready to lead you through a great workout, have you enjoy time with other ladies and mamas, and sweat it out while having FUN!  Strollers are invited, too!!  (I'll have my duallie and 2 kiddos with me for some added "resistance.")  :) 

Your first class is FREE, and future classes are about the price of a latte!  Class takes place in the Circle C neighborhood (near Mopac and Slaughter Ln).

Bump up your fitness level while having FUN in the process!   Wondering what a photographer knows about fitness?  Click here and here.  So put it on your calendar, commit to making it happen, and I can't wait to see you there!  (Trust me... I know it is tough (chaotic!) getting kids out the door, in the stroller, and getting a workout in, but it's Soooooooo worth it!  Promise!)

Join us for WalkFit while we strengthen and tone our bodies and infuse 3 cardio strength challenges into the workout while speed walking 2 miles.  I will provide equipment as well as modifications and options, so this is great for varying fitness levels. (Participants should be able to walk 2 miles in 35 minutes or less.) See photos here from one of our fun classes!)

Please feel free to invite your friends. Limited to 30 people. Bring a water bottle to stay hydrated!

We will meet on the BACK side of the Circle C Swim Center/pool (there is parking back there and/or along LaCrosse).  Allow a few minutes for parking.  5919 LaCrosse Ave.  78739.  Click here for info/map. 

Please be there and ready to go 5 minutes before class starts to sign a waiver.   If weather is looking questionable, Sarah will post an update on our "Miles of Smiles Photography by Sarah" Facebook page.  Be sure to "Like" us there so you can get updates and details on upcoming classes.

See you on the 21st!  

June 11, 2012

Mama Mondays: For the Love... {Austin Family Photographer}

Like any job or profession, every now and then, everyone needs a little nudge in the right direction... a little "atta girl or atta boy..." a little reinforcement that we're on the right path in life.  And I must say, this session with the O Family was that for me.

I am not doubting at all that this is where I am supposed to be in life, in profession, in motherhood... But sometimes all the running of a business and being "Jack of all (ALL!) trades" can wear me down a little bit and take away a little of my energy in the parts I love the most... shooting sessions, meeting new clients, working with repeat clients, and providing them with images they will cherish forever.  All of the logistics, income/expenses, pricing, trying to make a little bit of a living, receipts, taxes, accounting, etc... yep... that is hard stuff to keep up with.  But I wouldn't trade it for the world if it means I get to capture moments like this for people who are so excited to be living them.  That is "it" for me... For the love of photography and capturing those moments for my clients

When I shot the image below, I knew it would be great.  And when it came up on my computer screen afterwards, it was an "ah hah" moment.  This is why I do what I do.  This is who I long to capture sweet images for.  For mamas that love their babies.  That is what started Miles of Smiles Photography in the first place.  And that was my "atta girl" experience.  (Click here to read how it started.  I got "malled.")  

Katie received a gift certificate for a photo session at her baby shower before her sweet daughter was born.  And I have to say... what an incredibly thoughtful gift.  Katie was so excited for our session (for many months, she says!), and had things organized just perfectly... from the outfits (coordinating... but not too matchy - good job, Katie!) to the jewelry to the ideas she had for a few of the shots.  This session had it goin' on... from the sweet little family, to Caroline's sweet smile (and tiny little teeth!), to getting to use my Grandad's high chair (over 90 years old from when he was a baby!), to the pretty wildflowers in the background.  It was perfect.

There are some people you meet that you immediately click with in life, and Katie is one of those.  At one point, we were talking about being organized mamas, and I said, "Do you color coordinate your daily planner?"  She looked at me with a big grin and said, "Uh Huh!  And do you make to do lists... and sometimes do things not on the list - and then put them ON the list just so you can scratch them out?"  I smiled at her and said, "UH HUH!"  A connection was born.  :)  They were such a sweet little family to photograph.  Their love for each other and for their baby girl is so apparent and so kind.  And their sweet little Caroline... how precious is she?! 

For anyone who has started, maintained, and expanded their own business - while keeping up with your kiddos, spouse, and house - I salute you.  It is hard work.  But it is great work.  And I know my journey has really only just begun (Miles of Smiles Photography started in October 2010).  This is now my main job, as I no longer coordinate the group fitness program at the University of Texas.  So it's not only the job that fulfills my creative passions in life... but it also helps support my sweet little family.  For those of you reading... for my amazing clients... for those I may get to serve in the future - thank you for being on this amazing ride with me.  I am so incredibly grateful for where God has led it since 2010, and cannot wait to see where it goes in the future.

June 07, 2012

Austin Children Photographer {Sister Love}

If I could define "Sisters" with a photo, I think this might just be it.  I love everything about this picture... the love they have for each other, their matching dresses (that match the wildflowers perfectly!), the colors of the wildflowers, and just the beauty all around.  Love it! 

These girls are so precious...

June 05, 2012

Austin Photographer {Carol's Headshots}

I had a great session with Carol.  She contacted me, because she needed a few head shots for the launch of her book, "Think. Create. Sell."  It was so interesting learning about her life's journey toward starting her own business, and now writing her very own book. 

I am so inspired by women who have a dream and work very hard to make it a reality.  I feel like that is what I am continually in the process of doing with photography, and love being surrounded by such strong, empowered, and dream seeking women.  And I love learning little time management secrets of busy mamas like myself! 

Here are a few of the shots we got.  And go check out her book... Click here.