I am so excited to say that it’s time to get on the schedule for Easter portraits. My Raleigh portrait studio offers sweet Easter bunnies every year and as you all know I just love to photograph children with animals. A mini session can be scheduled with the bunnies or you can add a bunny to a full session. We can shoot in the studio or out in the flower gardens. I will be photographing my bunnies with children from Friday the 9th of March until Sunday the 25th of March with Easter being April 1st this year. Sessions are booked on a first come first serve basis so send me an email soon if you want to get on the schedule. Bunnies are shy creatures and do not wish to be handled all day long so I only book 2 sessions a day. That means weekends get booked up fast. Here are some recommendations for your Easter sessions so that you get the best images.
Children are more comfortable holding bunnies if they have on long sleeves because they can feel the bunny’s nails. They can of course sit by the bunnies if a short sleeve dress is your child’s special Easter outfit but bringing another outfit so they can hold the bunny is super cute. A jean jacket on top of a sundress is darling for girls.
Some of the most beautiful bunny portraits I have taken of children are portraits of children wearing comfortable, natural colored and casual clothing. You can see examples below. Tan, gray, cream and browns are all nice with animals. You don’t want the outfit to be the first thing you see in an image. My bunny portraits are also very natural in composition, which means I do not set up Easter sets with lots of props. I want your portraits to be able to be hung in your home year around and for the focus of the portraits to be your child and the animal.
Mini sessions are great for bunny photos but you can also add a bunny to a full session and get some updated images of just your child.
Children will be coached in gentle handing of animals at all times. Parents will be asked to spot and make sure this happens.
Pricing for bunny sessions is as follows:
Magical Mini Price for 1 child: $300 for photos with the bunnies only. You get 30 minutes in the studio and I edit and present 10 images in a gallery of which you pick 7.
Normal mini session price: $350 includes siblings. Again you get 45 minutes in the studio and I edit and present 10 images of which you pick 7.
You are welcome to add a bunny to a full session. Many clients choose this option as you get 1.5 hours of time allowing images of your child with and without bunnies. I edit and present around 25 images of which you pick 15. Click HERE to see regular pricing.
A deposit is required on the day you book your session in order to hold your spot. Session spots are limited.
I am so excited to see everyone that comes for Easter portraits every year and am excited to meet some new customers as well.
1. I do not photograph girls in the Dollcake dresses holding the bunnies because the bunny nails will snag the dresses.
2. All children in one session must be siblings. Cousins and friends are great to bring along but we will need to book 2 sessions.
3. A deposit is required on the day you book to hold your spot. Session spots are limited.
BOYS like bunnies too. 🙂 D
Jacob and his family came into my Raleigh studio a couple of days ago to have his first photo shoot. His mom was super excited about having his picture taken. He was so cute and a very big boy. I think his mom said he weighed over nine pounds at birth. He has darling round cheeks and you can tell he is going to be very tall like his mom and dad. He also had the funniest cry. Mom said it’s sounds like a baby pterodactyl and I agreed. His big brother Jackson did NOT agree. He went on to inform us that the pterodactyl actually never did exist, just like the brontosaurus. Jackson is seven and super sweet so it was very easy to get sibling shots. He held him and gave Jacob the sweetest kiss. Mom was having a fit in the back ground. I believe she said she had tears in her eyes. I could tell Jackson is going to be a fantastic big brother. He was such a nice little boy, polite and sweet and did not complain about the length of the newborn part of the session. As a treat for his cooperation I took him to the barn to play with Lightning. As we were leaving he said “now I really do love horses.” I bet his mom, who also loves horses will be glad to hear that. I was so happy to meet this wonderful family and I hope to see them a lot in the future. Jacob has a super cute smile.
Michelle is a licensed, insured, award winning and multiple times published Raleigh newborn photographer. Michelle has specialized in the art of newborn photography since 2004 and the newborn babies are her favorite subjects. Michelle’s Raleigh portrait studio is on a beautiful horse farm. The property is landscaped especially for her newborn, baby and children’s portrait work. She also has a special and separate studio just for newborns. Michelle also specializes in children’s portrait work. She has been featured in the News And Observer for her portraits with children and unicorns. Michelle loves the opportunity to also capture high school senior photos. Michelle feels senior photos are very special and likes the adventure that comes along with each new senior. You can best contact Michelle through the contact page of this site, HERE.
The infants that came to have their newborn portraits taken in my Raleigh studio this summer are finally sitting up. This is always the time that I suggest people bring them back for a second photo shoot. As I mentioned in a prior blog post, which you can see HERE, there are so many good reasons to have a photo shoot at this time and not wait until they are a year old. Eliana came in yesterday and she is so cute I just can’t stand it. Like most babies this age she is super chubby because she isn’t old enough to work of the chub yet. This makes the most adorable pictures for mom and dad. Check out those cheeks people. Also like most babies that are in this age range Eliana was super friendly and easy to photograph. Eliana’s parents scheduled a mini session and this was the perfect amount of time for Eliana. She was so easy and sweet that we were able to get a lot of variety in that amount of time. My mini session is very affordable and a great way for parents to get milestone images of their children.
As a Raleigh baby photographer I feel it’s important to be ready for my clients. For me this means that I have several set ups out and available for my clients to look at when they arrive. It also means that I have consulted with my clients so that know what to expect from the session. As an artist I also have a vision for that baby. My vision for Eliana was a cherub portrait and she was such a cute little angel. I also had several flower bonnets set out for mom and dad to see. The purple was my favorite on Eliana but we put several on her because her sweet little chubby cheeks just looked so cute in every single hat. Her mom brought a couple of outfits that were also super cute. Stay tuned to my Facebook page to see some of those posted later this week.
So that was Eliana now and here are a couple from then. These photographs are from her newborn session this summer. Eliana, then and now…
And these are her wonderful parents. I was so happy to meet them and am looking forward to many years of photographing their daughter. We are already talking about her unicorn photo shoot when she is older.
Four years ago I moved my photography studio of 11 years from Holly Springs NC to Raleigh. I loved my Holly Springs studio set up but had no real space to create the outside gardens that I really wanted to have for my newborn work. My set up now is so nice. I hired a contractor to convert a two car stand alone garage into a studio. With his help and the help of friends and family we chemically cleaned the floor, ran additional electricity, insulated, built a faux wall and sheet rocked. We painted and painted, the least favorite job in the process and placed all the mounting required to hold the back drops and equipment. We added a nice walkway and I hung my portraits. From the outside it looks like the garage that matches the house but from the inside it’s just what I needed.
The real fun began with the newborn studio. I have a four bedroom house so I set up one room as a separate studio for newborns. It has a huge closet to store blankets, back drops and props and plenty of wall space for portraits. It’s so nice and cozy and a much more sterile environment for newborns as this special studio for infants does not have the high traffic of children that my bigger studio has. The best part about my newborn studio are the gardens. I call them the Raleigh Fairy Gardens. As I landscaped the areas I had my camera in my hand, always checking through the lens to see what the images will look like as I move flowers, bricks, logs, greenery and flag stone into specific spaces. An artist must first have a vision to be able to create art and I had the vision. The very first thing I saw when I toured the property was the gorgeous grapevine. It’s huge. I have since google mapped the area and it appears to be over 50 years old. One side tipped years ago and forms a triangle kind of entrance into which I can place babies in baskets or bread bowls to get images such as this. Of course I added plenty of flowers to the area under the vine.
The size of the trunk is what tells me the vine is so old. I just love to use it as a back drop for a portrait.
The next step was putting in an area with nice flag stone, plenty of interesting ground cover and flowers, flowers, flowers. Not only did I use my camera as my guide but I made sure to place this in an area that gets shade early in the morning, because I believe that is the best time to photograph newborns and toddlers. I planted plenty of perennial plants and flowers so all through the spring, summer and fall new flowers are popping up. It’s such a nice place to photograph a newborn but large enough for toddlers and young children as well. This was the beginning of the Raleigh Fairy Gardens.
Over on the side of the property I have my ivy garden and tropical garden area. So many people have asked me where in the world I take these images. You will have to book to see, it’s not what you would expect.
New at the end of 2017 and really coming to life in 2018 is my woodland fairy garden. It’s a fantastic place to photograph little boys. The set up is more wooded, logs, ivy and ferns. I just love it and it adds such a nice atmosphere to images. My first portrait in that area was actually published in a photography magazine. Isn’t he just a doll?
I hope to meet lots of sweet new babies this year of 2018. Til the next post…. Michelle Studios
Hey ladies. Are you looking for a special gift for your guy? Have you ever wanted to have some boudoir photos taken for the special man in your life? Have you ever wanted to have some taken just for you? I am now offering boudoir sessions to clients and a great time to start is right before Valentines Day. I’m super excited about it and the sessions are going to be so much fun. I know I have some moms out there that would just love it. Gentleman, if you are looking for a nice gift for your lady for Valentine’s Day this may be just the right gift for her.
Although I have been a children’s photographer since 2004 and always will be primarily a children’s photographer, I will be adding some adult sessions to what is offered in my studio.
I have been following two wonderful fashion photographers for about 10 years. They are Craig Lamere and Sue Bryce. Both of these wonderful artists offer very tasteful, fashion oriented boudoir sessions to their clients. After ten years of looking at their work I have decided to add the service to my studio as well. I hope that some of the mommy’s of my tiny clients want to come in and focus on themselves for a session.
I have constructed some interesting back drops called V-Flats. They look like the corner of a wall. This gives some additional options for posing. Leaning on a wall is a very comfortable and attractive pose for you ladies. I currently have one in rose, one in olive green and one in white. My studio is super private so you should feel very comfortable. If you are interested in booking a shoot and having your photos ready in time for Valentines Day give me a call or email me through my contact page HERE. Make sure to include your phone number. My mini session is perfect for a boudoir session. That gives us 45 minute of studio time. I shoot and then edit and present the best ten images to you, of which you choose 7.
The type of boudior sessions I think I would like to do are fashion style boudoir. I love the look of a soft sweater draped low off the shoulders or a kimono covering lingerie. I do not have a bed in the studio but if you would like a session in the privacy of your home I can bring a simple light set up to your house.
Here are some helpful tips to get you ready for your shoot:
A bra should fit properly to best show your lovely shape in your photos. You want to avoid pinching of skin, bulging around a too tight strap or a strap that rises leaving red marks on your skin. It’s also important that the cup size be accurate so that there is no cap between your body and the bra. Most of these issues can be taken care of by getting a custom fitting or putting it on and looking at yourself in a mirror, all angles.
The same rule applies if you wear thigh high stockings, make sure they fit around the thigh, you do not want them so tight that you are getting unnecessary pinching or bulging of skin.
Dress in loose clothing on your way to the session so that you will not have red clothing lines from jeans, socks etc…
Make sure nails are freshly painted.
Drink plenty of water the week prior to your session. Being really hydrated reduces tummy bulge, makes skin and hair look great and makes lips look soft and plump.
If you manicure your eye brows it’s best to do it a couple of days in advance to avoid any redness or swelling in the area. Check the eyebrows a few days in advance and see if they need to be manicured.
Fake tanning should NOT be done prior to a session. If you go to a tanning bed you want to make sure you do NOT have tan lines or burns.
A large/long sweater pulled down low on the shoulders is a super cute shot and great if you are shy. I also have a mink and a fox coat for a similar look.
A kimono over lingerie is another great way to showcase your body.
I always think ladies look nice in jeans, rip them up and fray them and get a great bra to match. 🙂
One of the most exciting aspects of being a Raleigh newborn photographer is being able to capture milestone moments with those children as they grow. At the end of every newborn session I let my clients know that the next best time to come in for portraits is about 7 months. I made sure Clara’s parents knew as well. This next best time to photography the baby can of course vary from child to child.I tell clients that it’s when they can sit up well but not walk yet. Sometimes this can be around the beginning of 7 months and other times it can be around 9 months. Clara’s mom called right at six months and I suggested that we wait a month to make sure Clara could sit up really well. It’s really important to make sure they are stable because if they are worried that they are going to fall you can tell in their facial expressions, they look worried. Clara came in for her milestone session and she was such a doll baby. Her dad is from Spain and mom brought the cutest little outfits. The bonnet was just adorable and the outfits and head bands were so delicate and intricate. I was so in love with her sweet baby face and this darling outfit that I entered it into a photography contest and the below image was published in Inspire Fine Art Photography Magazine.
I just love this age and the chubby cheeks, arms and legs. Babies this age can’t get up and move around yet to work it off, this extra shape makes them so adorable for the camera. I was blown away by Clara’s beautiful eyes. Her mom and I are hoping that they stay hazel like mom’s eyes. This image is just stunning to me. I feel like I am looking right into her beautiful, huge eyes. And yes I did make it my screen saver on my computer.
Anyone who follows my page knows I am in love with Dollcake dresses. Clara’s mom loves them too. She was given a beautiful dress when she was born and mom has been anticipating the time when it would fit so that we could take her pictures in it. I have many gorgeous Dollcake dresses available for clients to wear while here at my Raleigh portrait studio. As Clara gets older I hope to see her in many of them. Click HERE if you have never seen the Dollcake website. You are in for a treat. Isn’t Clara gorgeous in this dress?
I also got this amazing new bucket. I just love the color and texture and Clara looks so cute sitting in it.
We got so many great portraits of Clara it is really hard for me to pick a favorite. The one below is a favorite for sure. There is just something about her sweet little facial expression.
I can’t wait for my next session with Clara.
I am so excited to say that I started off 2018 with another publication in Inspire Fine Art Photography magazine. The photo is of baby Clara who is just gorgeous. What a nice surprise.
I am grateful and so pleased to also be listed again in the triangle shopping guide, Expertise, as one of the top newborn photographers in our area. I am very proud because there are many good photographers here in the triangle area.
Although I have always been primarily a children’s photographer I am going to be branching into photographing adults some, specifically ladies. I have been following Sue Bryce and Craig Lamere for over 10 years each and love looking at their images. I have always been very inspired by those two artists so I am going to start offering very tasteful boudior sessions this year for Valentines day. They will be lots of fun. Most shots will be on Vflat back drops which I am in the process of making. It’s been a long time coming as I have been thinking about this for years. The VFlat back drops are interesting because they give the appearance of a wall and allow for standing poses leaning on a wall of sorts. I bought two sets to start and am working on them now. One will be an olive color and the other a rose. There will be more images of the under construction project here at the end of the post. I will also show some images that I am taking over the weekend.
As many of you know I offer unicorn photo shoots with my sweet little Lola from Stampede of Love. I am looking forward to booking with you all this year and your sweet little girls. I have quite a collection of Dollcake dresses now for your children to wear during the photo shoot. My dresses start at size 3 and go up to size 12. I wear a size 5 juniors and the size 12 fits me. smile.
This year I am going to be adding Titan pictured here for my older clients. When you book with me we can discuss if your daughter is old enough to be photographed with Titan.
If your daughters would like to be a princess for the day I will be offering princess sessions again this year. Dollcake dresses and beautiful crowns make the girls all smile and the images are so sweet.
In 2018 I am really going to amp up my high school senior photo sessions for teens in the Raleigh, Cary, Fuquay-Varina, Holly Spring, Garner and surrounding areas. I finally have the Einstein light that I have been needing to really overpower the sun for some dramatic off camera flash. As soon as it warms up I am breaking it out and looking forward to some very dynamic portraits, just right for high school senior sessions.
Here are some under construction and one finished vflat back drop. I can’t wait to get some ladies on this rose one for Valentines Day. Make sure to send me an email if you are interested in booking. What a perfect present for the special men in your lives or just for you girls.
And Easter is early this year, don’t forget to book your bunny sessions…
Happy 2018 everyone.
Babies, babies, babies. Over the summer I photographed many gorgeous newborn babies and hope to see some of them soon. I love to remind customers that the two very best time to photograph a baby in the first year of life is newborn and somewhere between seven and nine months. Why is this the best time? Well it is a great time to photograph a baby for many reasons. One of those reasons is that it is great to get them into the studio before they are up and walking. New walkers love to walk so they are very active and generally do not want to stay on the back grounds very long. You can still get nice portraits at that age but you will get MUCH more variety if you can get them in before they are walking. A second reason is that babies that age love to get attention. Because they can’t go anywhere on their own they are used to commanding the attention right there where they are and that is great for photos. They are also usually more chubby at this time in their development because they can’t get up and run it off yet. This is the one time in their life that the chub is so adorable. Babies this age seem to have less stranger danger than they do starting at a year. This is also great for photographs. I absolutely love this age. I have so many cute hats and props for the age as well. Again I am not prop oriented in my work, liking the child to be the focus of the shot but having a baby size baseball bat or a super cute headband or petticoat is nice. Here are some examples of that age. You don’t want to miss out on this fantastic time to capture images of your sweetie. And the gorgeous angel wings are for boys as well as girls.
2017 has been a great year for my studio. I am so excited and grateful about the opportunities that were afforded to me and my Raleigh NC studio this year. One of the most exciting things that happened this year was that I was listed in a local shopping guide called Expertise as one of the top 20 newborn photographers in the triangle area for 2017. I am so excited to be listed again for 2018. I have to say that Iam so proud and excited about those listings. Newborns are my favorite subjects and I have worked so hard in my gardens for the past almost 4 years to create beautiful areas in which to photograph babies. They are usable in spring, summer and fall and add a nice option for parents to have studio as well as outdoor portraits of their newborns.
I was honored again to be recommended by another local artist and asked by Chef’s Palette to display some of my portraits in their their fine dining establishment. It’s a really nice place to go have a great meal and see the beautiful creations from local artists. It was a wonderful experience and I really liked the owner. My brother who is a connoisseur of fine dining establishments in Raleigh said it’s one the best places to go and have a nice meal.
Another highlight of the year was that I have had four images published. I was over the moon when I received each notification. The good luck continued to pour down on my studio and I was interviewed by The News and Observer about my photo shoots in Raleigh with the unicorns. One of my portraits was featured at the top of the article. I was proud, as was he owner of the miniature horse Lola and the mother of the little girl in the portrait. The below images are the ones that were published in Inspire: Fine Art Photography Magazine.
And I was thrilled to start of 2018 with another publication.