Category Archives: PHOTOGRAPHY
I gotta admit, it was a little intimidating! It was our first workshop! It took me mustering up all my courage to even put it out there that we were offering this. What if no one signed up?? *Aaaah.* As each attendee signed up, I got a little more excited and asked God to help me do this well. We sold out in 48 hours. Whew. THEN we had to hit the road running. What if we were…ya know…. lame..:/ These ladies were coming with high expectations….and it was our job to make sure we give them what they came for. More than anything, I wanted to make sure these ladies walked away HAPPY THAT THEY CAME, creatively inspired, and equipped with all they need for a successful shoot. We as a team invested a lot of planning and preparation into this day. It we were going to give this a whirl, we wanted to do it well and with our whole heart.
Our heart and passion for 2013 is to connect, collaborate, reach out, and touch others around us. In a TANGIBLE way. This ladies enabled us as a team to do that on Saturday. For this, I am eternally grateful to them.
Here are a few of their thoughts on the day…
Nicole said, “Thank-you all so much for the time and effort you put into the workshop. It was extremely helpful and very well done. You explained everything so well and the hands on was awesome. It is exactly what I needed. I think I learned more in one day then all of last year. ” Charlene said, “A big thank-you to the whole CHAR team for a fantastic workshop and fun day. I was so inspired by all the knowledge and information I received from the day. Everything discussed was what I needed and so well organized. So good to meet everyone as well. Great experience!” Mindy said, “You guys are AWESOME!!! Wish I could work for you!!!” Me to, Mindy! Regina said “Overall Y’all outdid yourselves, the atmosphere when I walked in the door was so authentic and warm than I knew it would be a good day. I felt very “met” and didn’t have to feel silly for asking questions that a pro should know the answers to already.:) Blessings to you Char and your team for all the helpful and encouraging teaching and thought you put into the day.” Karen shared her thoughts on the workshop on her BLOG. :)
FROM THE ENTIRE TEAM….
Ashley, Charlene, Jenny, Karen, Kelsey, Kendra, Lori, Mindy, Nicole, Regina, Stacey, Trish, Aubrey…
THANK-YOU FOR COMING AND BEING PART OF OUR DAY! WE APPRECIATE YOU.
Andrea taught all about shooting in manual. I covered natural light…I kinda think I got the better end of the deal,;)
We wanted to give a little gift. Something personal. We brainstormed a few ideas…then Grace had this idea! She handmade a key-chain for each of the ladies.
Kathleen was BUSY behind the scenes. She saw that we had hot coffee all day, lunch was served, and made sure everybody was comfortable.
Here Grace is sharing her stylist secrets and explaining her vision behind the styled shoot.
During the shoot we covered posing and worked on shooting in manual.
Hey what do you know, iPhone’s work too!
Grace styled the shoot and Aubrey was our gorgeous model. Check back for more images of Aubrey!
Anna covered editing and explained her editing techniques, the pros and cons of different editing softwares, and what to watch for when editing. She wrapped up by talking about the art of editing….each person has the freedom to find their own style.
Of course we had to document it….the classic group shot…:)
To each of the team members….I am so grateful. I sure would not have it in me to pull this off on my own. ;)
BECOME A LIGHT NOTICER!
This past weekend we had our ON THE SHOOT Workshop. Our goal was simple, to equip the attendees with all they need for a successful shoot. We covered natural light, shooting in manual, gear for the job, styling a shoot, editing, and workflow.
Many of the attendees mentioned wanting to learn how to create photos that are sharp and in focus and POP. It starts with light! And that’s where I came in….I talked all about natural light. My goal was to have each person understand the different types of light, how each type affects your subject, to recognize the light, and lastly how to effectively use each kind of light. We covered open shade, overcast days, window light, directional light, back-light, and reflective light. When I first got my DSLR and set out to create what everybody else made look so easy, I remember feeling so frustrated!! Why did some photos pop and others didn’t? Why are some images….just drab? Soft and not in focus? What is the difference and how can I consistently shoot images that I nailed? Argh!!! But…..with time and shooting and shooting, I starting seeing the light (pun intended). ;-) No really….I really started recognizing light, seeing it, understanding how it worked, learned to make it work for me…..and finally, I learned to LOVE light.
Photography is painting with light! The word photography is derived from the Greek for ‘painting with light’. A photograph is made from the light that enters your camera’s lens and hits the sensor. Without light you would have NOTHING. An awesome location and an awesome subject will not create an awesome photo if the light is not good.
LIGHT IS POWERFUL. LEARN TO RECOGNIZE LIGHT. LOVE IT, USE IT, UNDERSTAND IT. LIGHT ENABLES YOU TO CREATE BEAUTY.
At the workshop I jumped in with OPEN SHADE…
The important word here is *open* shade. You still want your subject FACING THE LIGHT SOURCE. Usually the closer to the edge of that open shade the better. Shooting in open shade is the safest lighting situation. Exposures come out spot on and the over all lighting is very even and nice. Open shade can be the side of a building or under a tree. It can be your garage (with the door open) or your your front door, or under a tree. Again the key word is OPEN. Open shade is not just any old shade. Open shade is not in the middle of a forest or a dense park with no sunlight in view. Next to a bright sunny spot is perfect. It looks something like this….
If you are stuck shooting mid day on a sunny day…open shade is your best friend!!! High noon or bright sunlight from mid-morning to mid afternoon is typically the least desirable type of natural light. If you take photos out in the strong sun you are more likely to get really harsh shadows and blow out the highlights. But sometimes we are stuck shooting at times of day when the lighting is not ideal. Your best chance for getting decent photos in this type of lighting is to find a nice piece of open shade and place your subject at the edge of open shade facing the light. Here is Janae demonstrating using how to use open shade on a sunny day…correct example on the far right.
Paige’s session was in the morning…and by the time we got to this shot….it was briiiiight. The sunlight was slamming down. AND we were in an orchard….to say the least, there was not many shade options. But this apple tree provided shade and I was able to get the shot.
Same scenario. A wedding day is one day you cannot control when you are photographing. Often we end up shooting the bride and groom portraits midday. Open shade is a life saver on sunny wedding days.
The field in front of Maddie was bright sunlight….I put her next to the barn in open shade.
Welp, that’s all for today. If recognizing light is a new concept to you…hope this gets you started….:)
Check back tomorrow for images from the workshop. Talk soon….:)
Tomorrow! It’s our WORKSHOP!
Details are being finalized. Packages being prepared. Shoot details coming together. Teaching material ready to run. Sweets and lunch ordered.
A little peek into what we have planned….
We cannot wait to meet and connect with others that love art and beauty as much as us!
BTW…..just yesterday we had a seat open up…so if you want to join us, we NOW HAVE ONE SEAT OPEN! Go HERE to grab the seat.
Enter PROMO CODE: SHOOT for a $75 discount.
If you are coming…..see you tomorrow. It shall be lovely. :)
We love our interns….they are truly such a core part of out team. We love the life, creativity, skills, personality, and fresh perspective they bring to us. Our interns jump right in the middle of shoots, ordering, designing, packaging, coffee downing…. and become an essential part of our workflow.
Janae and Halley were amazing. To say the least. These girls rose to the job at hand and were such a blessing to have around. Halley is now in art college and Janae is running full steam ahead with her own photography business not to mention getting married this summer! Haley talks about her internship HERE and Janae chats about her internship HERE.
Our goal as we work with our interns is to ENABLE by EQUIPPING.
We are excited to have TWO internships available for 2013! Check our Grace’s thoughts on the stylist internship HERE.
Collaborating, dreaming, planning, working along side others…does this resonate with you? Then we would be so honored to hear from you. For more details on the available internships and to apply go HERE.
HAPPY FRIDAY ALL….THE SUN IS SHINING HERE….AND I AM EXCITED FOR THE WEEKEND.:)
Announcing….ON THE SHOOT workshop!
Registration opens to TODAY. And we are pumped! See below for more details…don’t miss the snazzy PROMO details!
ABut first, let me tell you about our fun evening last night! Due to the support of all you fine folk, we had one FULL house last night. Thank-YOU to each of you that came out! We APPRECIATE you.
In 2013, one of our goals at CHAR Photography is simply to get to know you! We want to meet you, hear from you, reach out to you, serve you, give you beauty and inspiration….in a small way, add a touch of LIFE to your life. Coinciding with this, Andrea had the idea to offer a FREE WORKSHOP. Originally we were thinking 12 attendees sounded nice and comfortable. We announced the workshop on a Friday and without us realizing it, 50 people signed up over the weekend! So we decided…Hey, this awesome…let’s run with it! Other than the fact, that I wanted to panic when I thought about being in front of 50 people, the entire team worked together and we did it!
Grace made the pretty drinks, lined up pastries from Bakery At The Cupboard, made sure the studio was aesthetically prepared, and gave us “what to wear” INSPIRATION. Kathleen created the slideshow used to teach and pulled together ALL the little details. Anna helped me prepare what I was teaching, put together the booklets, and made sure we all knew what we were doing the night of. Haley could not be there :(since she just headed off to college, but she designed the booklet that was given to each attendee. Janae helped out as needed and took all the photos you see here. Andrea taught along with me and brought energy, laughter, and awesome jokes….cause she is just like that.:)
So blessed to have these ladies by my side. Truly.
SO….LET’S TALK ABOUT OUR NEXT WORKSHOP…
ON THE SHOOT workshop will be a one-day intensive workshop with the CHAR team focusing on equipping you with all you need for a successful shoot. Designed for beginner to intermediate photographers, the workshop will cover utilizing natural light, shooting in manual, engaging your subject, shooting for variety, posing, an overview of editing techniques, and recommended gear that does not cost a fortune. It will be of day of learning, shooting and falling more in love with photography.
The fun-filled day includes a styled photo shoot, hands on training, plenty of Q&A, as well as an opportunity for one-on-one conversation.
AND THE DETAILS….
WHEN IS IT? The workshop takes place Saturday, February 23rd from 9am-5:00pm.
WHERE IS IT? It all happens in small town Myerstown, PA at the CHAR studio
WHO IS IT FOR? On The Shoot is designed for beginner to intermediate photographers that want to take their work to the next level.
HOW MANY ATTENDEES? The goal of the workshop is to create an environment that enables personal attention and hands on training, so it will be limited to 15 attendees.
GOOD FOOD? We like food! So yep, a delicious lunch is included.
WHAT IS THE INVESTMENT? The workshop fee is $400 per person...BOOK BY MIDNIGHT MONDAY FEBRUARY 4RTH AND RECEIVE A $75 DISCOUNT (Please mention Promo code: SHOOT)
HOW DO I REGISTER? To register for The Workshop, complete and submit a registration form. To do that, head on over to the website. You will find that HERE.
Registration was opened last night….and there are quite a few others that are waiting for registration to open today. So if you want a spot, go ahead and grab your seat…
WE WOULD LOVE TO MEET YOU!!!
Indeed, it is true…we LOVE our interns. Janae has been a HUGE blessing this past year. Janae assisted on many weddings, edited many of the weddings, did a ton of design work, and just helped out in whatever way was needed. On a typical day she came in with a sweet spirit, grabbed a cup of coffee, got Pandora up and going, and hit the “to do” list. I am so thankful God connected us this past year. She will soon be transitioning to working full time with her business and we will miss for sure. :( I grabbed this photo of Janae yesterday…totally spur of the moment…she always looks great….:)
Hear Janae’s thoughts on life and work and such….
Loving ever minute of learning by experience and growing with some of the sweetest people!
Here is a little bit about me and the things I love.
- I am a natural light portrait and wedding photographer, and I LOVE my job!
- I adore camp fires, bare feet on wooden floors, and finding new ways to look at old things.
- A room full of friends and a bowl of popcorn is my delight.
- My pursuit in life is to “refuse to be content with just the knowledge of God. But insist on experiencing his presence.”
My journey here at Char Photography has been one of growing, stretching, learning, and working with an awesome team who’s goal is to create photo magic! :) Over this season I assisted Char at many weddings and several other tasks like editing, designing products, ordering, and whatever else needed to be done in the office. It is hard to put into words the value of experience to me. I’m the kind of gal that loves a good old authentic experience. As much as I love books and learning in a classroom setting, until I get out and touch, feel, and do what I am learning it’s hard for me to grasp a concept without spending some time putting it into action.
This past year I gained a lot of experience that I had hoped and prayed for, and I feel so blessed as this year I take my little business and apply the techniques and concepts I learned to my own life and business.
I learned this year that no shoot or wedding will be completely perfect, however you can use that to your advantage. Take a deep breath, don’t stress, just have fun and don’t limit your creativity. It’s a perfect chance to try something new and push yourself.
Businesses don’t just “happen.” They take time, effort, investments, late nights, early mornings, organization, and sometimes a lot of coffee. Don’t get me wrong that is not a bad thing. All GOOD things take time and effort, they are never easy.
You know that saying “Two is better then one,” Well it’s true! Whether you are starting a business, going to school, chasing after a dream, or just simply walking through life. It helps to surround yourself by loving and caring people who will listen to your dreams and keep on pushing you to make them happen.
Really I could keep going on and on about the awesomeness of interning and all the technical and practical lessons I learned. If you would like to see more of my work, who I am, or just hear me ramble on a little more you can check out my blog or Facebook page.
JANAE, WE LOVE YOU! :)
This little stool has been my sidekick for quite some time. Hand in hand, we run across grassy meadows, trot down city streets, meet new people, and chase the light. He has been good to me. Maybe I should name him? Huh.
It is true, I am short. Many of the faces I watch through my lens are looking down at me. And well, shooting UP on somebody is typically not vary flattering. Note I highlighted typically. Like all rules or suggestions…..sometimes they need to be ignored and they just may not apply to your shooting style. But get me approximately 6 inches above my subject’s eye level, and I am good to go. When I am shooting UP on a subject, Instead of accentuating their eyes I am accentuating their chin. ;/ Not so great. Also, when we look slightly up, our eyes instantly open up and become more alive. On a photo, this results in big eyes that look bright and happy. This technique especially applies to close-up portraits…not full length. My trusty little stool is just what I need to give me a few inches. Don’t have a little stool? Find something to stand on. I do it all the time…anything will do. Or have your subject sit down and whallla…you are above them.
Ah yes, it Wednesday. May you have a lovely Wednesday…wherever you are, whatever you are doing. :)
In 2013, one of our goals at CHAR Photography is simply to get to know you! We want to meet you, hear from you, reach out to you, serve you, give you beauty and inspiration….in a small way, add a touch of LIFE to your life. On January 31st, we are offering a FREE BASIC PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP. We will be teaching basic techniques that are simple to apply but are essential to taking your photos to a whole new level. The evening will include Andrea and I teaching, a Q&A, and meeting others that want to learn also. Our desire is to give you practical tools that you can take and apply, successfully on your own.
Seating is limited. A digital SLR is helpful but not needed. The techniques we will be covering can be applied to a good ‘ol point and shoot. :) We would love to meet you there! GO AHEAD AND GRAB YOUR SEAT HERE.
If you would like a more in-depth teaching on the basics of portrait photography….WE HAVE THAT COMING! In February! Get in touch for more details.
TODAY I HAVE A VERY SPECIAL GAL TO INTRODUCE TO YOU!
Haley has been interning this past year and she has been incredible to have around here. She comes in, gets to work, does her thing, and gets stuff done! Not to mention, she brings with her such a sweet, positive attitude she truly is a blessing just to have around. Today Haley is taking over and is going to tell you a little about herself….
Hey everyone! I’m Haley, you probably don’t know much about me, because I do a lot of the behind-the-scenes work at Char Photography.
So first of all, a few important things you should know about me:
-Photography is my passion (obviously)
-I am optimistic and open-minded
-I love the city
-I try to see beauty everywhere, where others cannot
-I hate talking about myself (so this may be difficult..)
I graduated from Manheim Central in June, and I am starting college at Kutztown University in just a few weeks – so EXCITED – and after that my goal is to continue to grow and establish my own photography business. I have been interning with Char for the past few months, and I’m absolutely loving it! :) It has been one of the best experiences, in many aspects. I have learned about running a business, interacting with people and clients, and of course, about photography, but I also learned about myself and the kind of photography business I hope to run.
I did a lot of the design work for Char, like designing albums, canvas gallery wraps, and Facebook and blog headers. So if you received any designed products from us, there is a good possibility that I had a hand in designing it. :)
Some important things I’ve learned to remember for business:
-You NEED to be ORGANIZED: make lists, write everything down, make a system and stick to it.
-Develop your own style
-Get to know the client so you can best capture their personality in the shoot
-A second photographer is a very good idea for weddings
-Never overlook the small details
-In an art field, you can never please everyone, ever, so don’t waste too much time trying to do so.
If I had to pick the biggest lesson I’ve learned over the past few months, it’s that everything changes, but you have to accept it. There is something good in EVERY situation, you just have to find it. And no matter what you are expecting, God has a better plan. If you asked me last January what I thought I’d be doing a year from now, I don’t think I could have predicted any of the things that I’m actually doing. But you know what? This is even better!
Everyone here at Char Photography is incredible, and I’m going to be sad to leave, but I can’t wait to head off to college in a few weeks and see what new things are in store for me! The best advice I can give to anyone out there is to simply trust God. He has a plan for everything, even the tiniest details and your worst days. And always look on the bright side! It is almost impossible to have a bad day if you’re optimistic. :)
“Few people get weak eyes from looking on the bright side” [anonymous]
Thank-you so much to all who entered our GIVEAWAY! It has been so fun to read your responses, learn who you are, what makes you happy, why you come back to this little ‘ol blog, and what you would like to see more of on this blog. I am excited to make a few changes around here to reflect what we read in the surveys. This was the first GIVEAWAY on the blog for CHAR Photography and I had no idea what to expect. Over 100 people completed the survey and with the additional people that followed/tagged us on Instagram, we had close to 150 people that entered the survey. Thank-you for your support of what we are doing here. We value each and every response. We appreciate you!
A huge Friday CONGRATULATIONS goes out to the winner of our Team’s TOP PICKS GIVEAWAY….
Emily, you said you read the blog every time I post (thank-you for your support!)….so go ahead and email firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as you see this and we will get your set of goodies on it’s way!
Here at CHAR Photography…we a have several things brewing for 2013. I am excited and ready and peaceful to allow things to happen as they happen.
Grace put together this collage representing 2013. To hear her thoughts on 2013, visit her BLOG.
Have a great weekend all!