230fbaaaa9d82faaa123ebae840c3355 An Autumn Love Story, for a Lifetime! / Engagement Photo Shoot ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Honestly, this engagement photo shoot is a way-overdue share.  It was actually shot last Autumn, 2010. But with the peak of Autumn just ahead of us, I think it’ll be all the more appreciated now. The celebration to be had is less than a month away now as well. So in that light, the timing couldn’t be more perfect.

I haven’t photographed many engagement sessions, really, but I’d love to because I do enjoy them.  But since I don’t photograph weddings, and most couples use the same photographer, I don’t get the opportunity often.  This couple however, aware I don’t do weddings, booked with me anyway, and I was honored they did!

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I have known the bride-to-be, “M”, all of my life.  Her family, as far back as 2 generations before her, have real history, with my own family.  They’ve been friends that have always felt more like family.  The history, the connections, and the stories, are more than I could ever begin to tell.  Her father has been a big and special part of my life, especially. So to be asked to do this engagement session for his daughter, and her handsome groom-to-be, “J”, was an honor.  It was important to me to find the most beautiful location between us that I could, and I think I did alright.

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How is this for a clever proposal?  “J” gave “M this pumpkin as a little gift, (got himself one as well), and this is the message she found on the bottom of hers.  She was puzzled at first by what it said, with his clever texting-style coding, but I believe she lit right up, when the light bulb went off.  As you can imagine, she said “Yes!”.

What a beautiful ring, huh? He did really good!  ; )

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The foliage was not only still holding on in this area, but there was this cool old structure (behind them) that I loved too.

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This might be their first formal family portrait. Their dog “A” is there first baby, of sorts, I believe.  She has a full name, and all.   She was given a pumpkin too.  But as I recall,  she destroyed it, like nobody’s business. LOL!

Here’s more of my favorite shots, of this couple in love, at this magical little Autumn spot I scouted….

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I loved so many photos I got of them together, with their love shining as warm as the Autumn sun on us that day.  But I do believe this was my very favorite shot of the two of them.  She’s so beautiful, and you can see he clearly loves her.

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This is simply, a cool shot I set up, if I do say so myself. And I am. No one can tell me any different. LOL

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So here we have, a beautiful collection of the couple as fiance’s to each other.   After a long courtship, a year+ engagement and wedding planning!  All leading to the day….

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At the end of this month, they will celebrate their wedding day, and the first day of the rest of their lives, as husband and wife.  I wish them the wedding day of their dreams, on a perfect Autumn day, and all of the happiness two people can have, forever.

I hope you all enjoyed seeing the photos from this special session, as much as I enjoyed shooting them.  Thanks for letting me share some of my work with you!

******

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SENIOR MIX

Posted by Laura on Tuesday Jul 12, 2011 Under Photography & Lettering, Seniors

d2ec3f27d6632662ed50832f5aba0065 SENIOR MIX ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

(2 paragraphs, and then it’s 40-something photos. Please give them a minute to load, after opening, before scrolling. )

I’ve been shooting high school seniors for about 13 years now.  Naturally, my work has really evolved since my early years. (Thank goodness.)  I’ve always taken a limited number seniors each season, to be able to give each individual my creative best, because it’s the creative process I love, and those customized portraits that reflect my seniors true personality, that they deserve.  Shooting every senior in the same spot, in the same style, and positioned the same way, is far from my style!  I’m not a volume photographer, and I won’t ever care to be.  I want to get a good feeling for who they are on the inside, so it shines on the outside. They have dreams, and passions, and souls.  Their portraits should reflect who they are as a person. Not look like a replica of every other senior’s photos. It’s my own individual style of working with my seniors, and creating portraits that stand out and highlight their uniqueness, and what is important to them, that has helped me succeed as a photographer, and given my business a name in this field, in my area.  I’m blessed that there have been so many clients over the years who have wanted to work with me, because they could see, and truly understand, my mission, beyond the yearbook photo.

Because I invest so much creative thought process into my seniors, I needed to take a season hiatus last year.  It was the first senior season I took off, but it was necessary for me to focus on important things in my life. This year, I am lining a few seniors up again for this summer, and there is some unique & exciting stuff involved!  Although some of these seniors have posts in this blog that are a partial collection of their photos only, I wanted to share with you a mix from the past few years.  In viewing them remember….they are not not lumped together as youth at this age.  While they all (except 1, was a year later or so) have the common thread of it being their high school graduation year, they are as unique as their photos, with their own personal dreams and gifts.  It’s my belief that God has a life plan for each one of them, individually, and it’s up to each of them to find it.  Led by their passions, using their gifts, as the powerful tools they were designed and born with, to do so.  It’s my hope that I am some part of sending them off on their way, into the world to find their way, believing in gift of who they are, like no other, and believing that their life has a divine purpose, meant for only them to live .

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Thanks for looking.


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“E” – 1 Year Old Boy / Snow Session

Posted by Laura on Wednesday May 25, 2011 Under Kids, Photography & Lettering

657dd84c9b44dd5a06326131dbdec0f4 E   1 Year Old Boy / Snow Session ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

When this past winter had appeared to be over, in terms of any more snow fall, I really regretted not taking more winter-style photos.   I also regretted not having gotten any photos of my friend’s already 1 year old son.   So one morning, when a beautiful flurry started to softly fall, I was on the phone calling my friend in a heartbeat.  I asked her what she thought of doing a mini-session with “E” that morning, and she was all for it.

I threw my camera equipment in the vehicle, and headed right over.  There is really not much else to tell about the photo shoot, except that while the flurries were on & off while I was shooting, but “E’s” cuteness was in full gear the whole time.

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Is he cute or WHAT?  I was really glad I took the time to do this session.  It was his first time really playing in the snow, so it’s a memory, and 1 year old is such a special age.  But I do hope I get to do another photo shoot with him soon, because under that hat is some gorgeous red hair!

Hope you enjoyed seeing this session.  I made up a new watermark too.  Let me know what you think!

***

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4faee6a1b7ebee2fd10d4973893b748f Some Recent Vehicle Lettering & Graphics ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Sharing in this post here, just some of Michael’s lettering and graphic work for his clients from within the past several months.

While most of his work is commercial jobs for small and large businesses require standard and conservative lettering jobs on their vehicles, once in awhile he gets a cool job a client wants just for their personal vehicles, and he has the fun of designing something more out of the box.  This XTERRA below was such a case, and he enjoyed getting a little more free-style with it.  I think it came out rather cool. Take a look-see for yourself:

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How would you like to drive that Bad Boy around town?

With the 4 door/extended cab trucks being a popular vehicle for tradesman, Michael has been making use of the extra space for their business branding, as seen  in the next couple of trucks, as opposed to keeping it all confined to the front door.

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I say, bigger is better, when it comes to company branding.

Here below is a more standard can truck lettering job, with front door lettering only.

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Still sharp looking, and eye catching though, with the black & white on red.

“Earthshaping”.  I like that word!

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Burkhardt Brothers…….Michael’s Dad lettered this company’s fleet of 40 foot trailers and box trucks for many, many, MANY years.  But guess what?  HE lettered it all IN PAINT, BY HAND!   Michael helped for a few years, with his father.  It’s Michael’s account now, but it is done in all cut vinyl now.  A whole lot faster for sure.  But more impressive execution, back in the day. Think about it.  Those capital B’s on a trailer are like 30 inches tall!

I miss that man.  <sigh>

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This is Michael’s brother-in-law’s roofing company.  Michael does all of his vehicle and sign work of course.  Michael’s father designed the logo.   I think its super sleek, and extra-so in gold.

ed13f4f4a058b03540bcb4d8b295631a Some Recent Vehicle Lettering & Graphics ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThis a trailer for a la crosse team, all in vinyl.  Michael did this in our driveway.  The kids love to watch him work, and help sometimes too.

These next 2 jobs are ‘vehicle wraps’.  Have you noticed them around?  It’s basically a very large one piece vinyl print, that is ‘shrink wrapped’ onto the vehicle.

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Here just the bed of the truck is wrapped.


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Here, the entire trailer was done.

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Wrapping takes some real practice and skill to apply, for sure.

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But I think it is eye-catching, and effective marketing/branding for one’s business.

Hope you enjoyed seeing some of Michael’s latest work.   Remember, he can design any small lettering or graphics for you, working with you even long distance.  Whether it be for personal use, or business. (Window lettering, window graphics, for mail boxes, small signs, helmets, banners, etc.) He’ll design according to your needs, have you approve via e-mail, and he can ship it right out to you, ready to apply.  Small lettering and graphics is not at all difficult to apply, if you’ll need to, and he’ll include directions, or assist you over the phone.

But really, we just wanted to share some of his work with you.  Let him know what you think of this or that, in the comments!  He’ll be glad to read it.



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{Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach

Posted by Laura on Sunday Mar 6, 2011 Under Kids, Photography & Lettering

3cac0989bda897a2d8f647f55af4da0c {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

These two kids, have always been ‘cake’, in front of my camera.   This is my God-daughter {Ju}, and her big brother, {N}.  You may have seen the recent post (as I type this), where {Ju} was a guest crafter with us at Our House Of Joyful Noise.  But I did this photo shoot with them back in July last year, 2010.  Their mom, my cousin, brings them down from western MA every now and then, to have their photos done, and we spend a little time all together too.  Whether I am doing individuals of the kids, or shots of them together as siblings, they always do great!  They are just pretty natural in front of the camera, and that’s always nice!

We decided to do a little urban shooting, and then hit the beach!  I wanted to go for a little serious/tough-boy look with big brother {N}, but it is hard to pass up his smile – which is always readily available!  (Just like his little sister’s!)  Also note, this particular photo shoot trip, {N} brought his buddy along, so I did some shots of, and with, him too.

I had fun processing these, to finish off the images as I saw them in my head. Not much more of my chatter, from here on.

afdb6345da4ef9215dfcc01dcb83496a {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

As you’ll see, this is one of several sweet brother & sister shots of them together.  Their connection is the real thing, that came through easy for me, too.

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This is my favorite shot of {Ju}. I just love it. It’s a great view of her freckles, and beautiful eyes.  I did her french-braided pigtails, myself.

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How handsome is this guy!!

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This is one of my ‘senior guy’ shots I love to do at this location. He really pulled it off, for a 12 year old, huh?

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6e4eaa9913195dbaf6573d3f4e058445 {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThis was another great one of them together.

112e426b42bdfb88d72433fcac471027 {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comI can be very funny. ; )  {Ju} has the best giggle in the world!  (Much like her mother’s.  Who knew such a thing was genetic?)

Their mom wanted me to design a family Christmas card with some of the photos.  Considering the urban/beach kind of shots we got, I went the ‘fun/grunge/non-traditional route’, and she loved it!  ( I did too. : ).    This is a flat, 2-sided 5×7, printed on linen.  It really made the most of their images, and all of my texture work.  (There was no LLR watermark on the real cards.  lol ;)

9a4ae426f986ee645e3103d8b28f75ef {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comFront

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One of the greatest works out of this photo shoot, was this shot below.  I knew the second I took it, it was going to be something special.  It was bound to be made into even more of an art piece, so I had fun with it.  Their mom ordered a large piece of artwork of it, as a framed piece for their home, and then also got linen note cards of it too.  (Of course, all minus my LLR web frame.)

f63823906c528b0dcfd1e8fe1d17f042 {Ju} & Big Bro / Urban to Beach ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

I can always count on an over-abundance of shots I am happy with, with these two.



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ad2a95acf1cc7db0cf7190c6544a3595 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Every working professional photographer is bound to have them.  Those photo shoots that are just a little more challenging then others.  I have to say, I’ve been pretty blessed, because more times than not, I walk away from the end of a shoot thinking, “Cake.”   But I have had the occasional high school senior boy, who is ‘so not down’ with having his photos taken > but his mom is making him.  They can be a challenge at first, but I have always been able to work that age.  Shortly into those shoots,  they realize hanging with me is not all that bad after all, (because I’m cool after all).  They find they are relaxed, laughing, and actually having a good time. They forget they had planned to hold onto that difficult attitude, through it all.   Or there is the baby who didn’t take their usual nap that day, and isn’t feeling happy, or co-operative.  Like most babies, I go into it knowing they will need time, comforting, and patience.  (I have had 4 of my own, and 3 at once.  I’ve had a little practice there.)

So yes, it happens, where sometimes, I need to give a little more of myself, to make a successful shoot, out of a rough start.  In the end, we’re all very happy with the results.

Now, every year, I have this one particular client who hires me to have a Christmas photo shoot of her 2 little girls.  I design their family Christmas cards, which is important to her, and she also places a healthy print order. (Well anyway, I require my clients to have placed a minimum order, before they qualify for card designing.)   I truly love this client, and I love her girls.   I have posted about all of their previous shoots, in this section of the blog, before.  After 4 years of working together, it seems we have established a firm procedure:

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The little one, Little A, sucks the life right out of me for awhile, we finally get down to some quick and serious happy business, and in the end, it is one of my absolute favorite shoots of the year!!   Every year.

1f9508015d2aae7f961785cd417e776d An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

The oldest girl, Big A, is a dream.  She is unbelievably polite, sweet, charming, co-operative, and a-ma-zing-ly patient with her little sister.  I also know she is also extremely smart, because I can see the wheels turning in her head, behind her eyes, when I talk to her.  She is so well-spoken.  She is beyond her years, I think.  A little beauty, with manners I can really appreciate.

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Her little sister, on the other hand, (in the background) is a challenge and a 1/2. I love her too!  Honestly, I do! But even at home, she rules the roost, so to speak.  I also love working with the girl’s mother, because she makes no bones about our annual situation.  She understands my position.  I think every year, our little one becomes just a tad more difficult.  Notice, she is not wearing any tights or shoes?  She refused to keep them on, and it was cold out.  Freezing.  The mom  allows me to use these struggles we have, with humor.  (As you’ll see.)  She also buys prints, of our most difficult moments, with her Little A, because she knows someday, they are going to be so treasured.  Real memories to share!

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The difficulty can go on, for who knows how long.  But I never give up, because 1) I am committed to making my client happy, 2) I want that order, and 3) this particular shoot, is always a seriously beautiful ending.  Hard to believe, but true, nonetheless.   It’s like giving birth.  No matter how difficult the labor, you forget the pain, once you hold that baby in your arms.

(Ok, I have to admit, I have never forgotten the pain of my own labors with my children.  I can go back there in my mind, in an instant, still.  Maybe, because I refuse pain meds when in labor, so my head is all there.  But, I’ve heard many other mothers say the pain of labor is quickly forgotten.   I can certainly agree that it is worth every bit of the pain, in the end.  The same is true when doing this shoot every year.

Oh, it does tend to go from bad, to worse….

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9685cf0d7d18165deafae6313777be30 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

It was during this moment, as she screamed bloody murder, and I hadn’t gotten a happy shot of her yet, that my infamous words came out:

“Come, Lord Jesus.”

These are the words I say, when I need some savin’, because I am about to lose. my. mind.

For the first time in 4 years, I was concerned I was really not going to be able to work it out this time.  That the whole shoot was going to be a complete bust.  It had been 45 minutes of absolute refusal from my sweet girl here, and we were losing time and light, fast now.

But Jesus came, and saved me, as I called.  Something absolutely magical happened……

Our town of Plymouth has a power plant, and every now and then, the sirens go off over loud speakers, throughout the whole town.  A really high pitched, constant, annoying sound, that suddenly sounded much like a famous reindeer we all know!  ; )  Oh yes….I went there:

I let out a big <GASP>, and with that, said, “OH NO, Little A!  Listen!!  Rudolph is coming!!  He is wicked upset that we can’t get these pretty photos of you, for your Christmas card!  What are we going to do?”

If you could have only seen the look of surprise on her face, and the stammering of panic.  She got herself together so quick, wiped those tears, turned her whole attitude around, and gave me every bit of that star quality, with a smile, that I work so hard to get out, every year:

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Of course by now, the sun was blasting on my spot. But I was going to take what I could get, and quickly, at this point!

1b0c10232e34941ecbe06849dcc3a839 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

abd533e7c1c6dbee13461fb248ab4a63 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

We moved on to the next little spot…..

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She was freezing, and a little tentative once again, but workable….

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In between their beautiful smiles, was Little A’s leariness of her sister, behind her.  She has a real serious aversion to her older sister. Hey, we all know they will be best friends some day, most likely.  It’ll be a beautiful thing!  But right now?  Little A can feel the compression of air, on her shoulder blade, if her sister leaned in to close to her, and she would scream her pretty little  head off!

f24c4e63a5eb480830b4d5025bb802cc An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

So this is where, I show multiple similar shots!!  My camera was going off like a bee-bee gun, because I didn’t know how long this was going to last!  And it was getting darker, rapidly.  I was bumming a little, because I did have another spot or 2, that I wanted to shoot at with the girls, prior to this one.  But I knew we had lost serious time, so I had to prioritize.

55831f62171a77934fdde04d251cdeb2 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

I got them smiling and giggling with my antics and non-sense talk. (Really…there isn’t much I won’t do, if I need to.  I’m in full fool-mode, sometimes.)

But I can’t take all the credit.  My oldest daughter {A}, who is often my very helpful assistant, was right behind me, and really got them laughing.   As similar as these photos seem, I just love the progression of their expressions….

6b93be20b416b22c61d7b8bdcc6a77db An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

I am beyond happy at this point, and the mom is relieved!!  You know what is so comforting?  The mom always says every year, “If you can get ONE good one, I’ll be happy!”  Well…..I know I can do better than that!!

46717996b6b9af676f36b09581716429 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

My heart is full of joy at this point, and I just know, these photos are going to be beautiful – because they are!!  Look at them!!

b79b89b626447bd707cb42fb1e97639b An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Check out Little A’s tongue sticking out!  She does that all of the time, when she is laughing, and I love it!

Here’s a question for you……..Have you had any idea where we might be doing this on-location Christmas shoot?  Any guesses at all?  Yes?  No?  Maybe?

Well here’s the answer:

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deaab48a5cc72e6dc2c7d384947f5ab7 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Yes, the cemetery.  I scouted high and low, for a new creative place to work with this family this year.  If you’ve read the past posts with this family, I have full creative license, and I love that!  So, I always want to keep it fresh and new every year.   I admit, I was a little nervous to tell the mom on the phone: “I did find a great location I want to use.  It is going to sound crazy but, you know….I see ahead of time in my head, how I am going to work it. I’d like to do your Christmas shoot…..in the …..cemetery.”   <Mom laughs.>   And then she says, ‘That does sound crazy!  But I trust you!  I trust you!!  Every year, no matter what, it is all beautiful in the end.  You always work a miracle, and that’s why I keep coming back to you!’

Boy was I relieved, because I had nothing else to suggest by then!

And now, is their resulting 5×7 folding Christmas card.  Imagine…it was printed on pearl paper, with a glossy finish. I SO wish, I could put one in your hand right now, because they were DIVINE!  The color, the depth, and the shimmer beneath that glossy coat.  They just look flat here, compared to the real thing. But….still lovely….

a0f14f9f2b4097ae34dd65b914e1fb41 An Annual Client Christmas Shoot 2010 / I WIN!(Again!) ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

THE FRONT OF THE CARD.

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OPENED: THE INSIDE SPREAD.  (Their name blurred for privacy.)

And the back, I always have fun with…..

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The mom LOVED the back!!  As always.  She said it was CLASSIC!  That’s what I mean…..she is so great to work with.  Her girls have grown on me from the very first shoot with them, and it has been beautiful  to watch them grow.  I know Little A will get easier in time.  I’m willing to bet, that extra spunk and spirit, will take her places in life.  If all else fails, she always has those adorable dimples to fall back on!  Her big sister has a bright future too.  No doubt about it.

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Until next year!!

(I’ll be sharing more sessions, soon, if you are enjoying these?  But I’d like to share some of Michael’s lettering work too, first. )

*  I hope you enjoyed a peek into this photo shoot!

(If you don’t want to miss what is coming up all over the blog, be sure you follow our page on Facebook!  *See sidebar, to follow us!)

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Newborn Sweetheart

Posted by Laura on Saturday Sep 18, 2010 Under Newborns, Photography & Lettering

7a9c2312098ab0cb0b737caa976d0400 Newborn Sweetheart ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

The slogan of my portrait photography business is, “Picturing The Gifts of Life”.    I came up with that slogan, because it’s exactly what I know I am doing, every time I photograph someone.  Anyone.  Each and every single human being our God created, are indeed a gift of life.

I revel in the uniqueness of every one, and it’s always an honor.  But it’s just that much sweeter, when it’s a newborn baby, fresh from the hand of God.

And this one, is a bit extra special to me.

12d524b09a28ac4bca372c7e69c425ed Newborn Sweetheart ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

This session was from a few months ago, but I am just getting around to sharing.

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There are so many shots from this session, but I try to just share a manageable amount.

I am trying a new gallery uploader (below), to keep you from scrolling forever.  Just click on one, and then you can click right through and view easily, using the arrows.  Feedback on this method of sharing is welcome!

Sorry about the watermark on the photos…..it has to be done. Try to ignore it. I hate having to use it.

It blemishes my portraits. ; )

Oh, and, I hope nobody would take offense to newborns in the discreet buff, because that’s how I most always photograph them.  Pure, innocent, and just the way God made them.

Except for the occasional hat.

Clothes never fit a newborn quite right.  And I hate to cover up their perfection.

I hope you enjoy.

Good luck with not falling madly in love. ; )

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Brittany / A Senior, Graduated.

Posted by Laura on Wednesday Aug 4, 2010 Under Photography & Lettering, Seniors

7f6c5ecc31542ec5144aac894337f816 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Meet Brittany.

Brittany already graduated from high school this past spring.  She is going for nursing too!  (I’ve had a few nurses-to-be in the last couple of years.)  Her mom is a nurse.  Brittany called me too late to book in time to get a year book photo from me too, but she didn’t care.  She really just wanted to work with me,  to get a collection of photos of her as a senior, (so important, I can’t say it enough…), and didn’t care when or how I could fit her in!

Well…..O.K.!  That works for me!

These are the kind of people I love to work with.  The ones who want to hire me for my style of work.  So I made it work for her, and we actually worked together for 3 photo shoots, over the period of 3 seasons!

She wanted my Senior Story Package, which is basically 3 locations, lots of clothing changes, the works.  We used a some urban locations, my studio, and a beautiful horse farm she had access too! (It was a dream, shooting at the horse farm.)

She had a LOT of photos, from all locations, in the end.  Too many.  This is only a small handful I am sharing with you.

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These 2 above, may just be my favorite senior shots of the whole season.  I think she is stunning. Brittany was very interesting to work with, because she often had a very, very commercial feel to her.  Through my eyes, anyway.  Can’t you see these shots some Sears or JC Penney catalog, or something?

Maybe it’s me.

But another interesting thing about her, was that she was quite like a chameleon.  In different shots, when I angled her differently, or I let the light fall on her differently, she could look like a totally different (beautiful) girl.

f86697fd4b009b038e93b6b1b20667d5 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

These boots of hers…..they have history.  That’s all I need to hear.  (Well, actually I like to hear the whole story. lol)

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I love  it when my subjects include meaningful things to them.  It inspires me to be creative and fun.

Is anyone else singing “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ ” now?

I started singing it, while I was shooting it.  I do, every time I see this shot.

It stuck.

2b9aab6bfb65af5b79b0bf7ceb37f741 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Look at those eyes.

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I love this head shot.  This is her ‘natural hair’, Folks.

Oh what I wouldn’t do, to have it.

She does all kinds of things with her hair, as you’ll see in the upcoming shots.  But, if I had her hair, I would wear it like this every single day.

O.K., maybe on hot and humid days like today, I’d put it up in a clippy sometimes.

But only if I was suffering from the heat.

673d5d04adbcb98ca31e12742befcb3e Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

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In these above and below, she reminds me of some super model….Stephanie Seymore, or someone like that?

I don’t know.  I don’t know much about the models out there, but she looks awfully familiar, as in she really reminds me of someone commercial.

If you know who,  help me out here, People!

These things keep me awake at night.

07f0b035d7f984e3f94e6275b4643e82 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

She definitely wanted some black and whites.

That made me happy.  I love doing black and white too.

Mixing it up makes me happy.

7e79520d1fa9ae951df78ccdd2ecece9 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

I love worn and  ripped jeans.  I always have.

The real ones, that came to be from actually wearing them.

Not the silly faux kind you could find in stores, and still can today.

I can tell the difference.  You can’t fool me.

51b66e2dae11d40bc43121246c9f4187 Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

My own ripped jeans drove my mother CrAzY.  She thought I looked like a bum.

They were comfortable, and I thought they looked pretty cool too.

I’m an artist, through and through.  Conservative in many ways, but I somehow still shock people today.

By accident, of course.

Brittany is an artist too. She can really draw and paint well!

And she wears ripped, worn jeans.

I understand you, Brittany.

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Here we are, at the horse farm

She’s a bare-faced beauty, isn’t she?

I got so many beautiful shots, with the horses in the background too.

But really….there were just too many shots to share.

And how many would you really want to see, anyway?

6975ed2b292edfe7221b45cf91c320ec Brittany / A Senior, Graduated. ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

But you get the idea.

I love to work with seniors.  Not just to take their photos, but for the opportunity to talk with them.   It truly is an opportunity, ; ),  and I always feel honored, when they open up to me.  When they share more of who they are inside, and listen some too. It’s good.

I always feel a little bit, like God sent them to me, to photograph, for a reason.  I am mindful of that, in conversation and photographing.   Sometimes, it turns out to be a big job, beyond business.  Yet in many ways, it’s always personal to me.

It’s a special place these kids are at…..graduating from high school.

They are on the brink of chasing their dreams, or going out into the world, to find out what they are.  They are who they are, at this age.  There are countless factors, that formed their unique selves as they are at this stage in their life.  It’s important to to capture this time, in detail.

Because only then,  can they ever look back, and see how they have grown.  They have so much growing to do ahead of them, in many ways, as their spirit unfolds.  As they approach adulthood.  It’s a beautiful journey ahead of them, full of more learning, through life, and God’s path set for them.  This I know.  I’m excited for them.  And happy to have had the opportunity, to freeze this youthful year for them, that is filled with so many special memories they’ll want to remember.

I hope you enjoyed seeing these.

We have lots coming up around here, including more Give-Aways! (See Home Page Note today.)  I also have the sweetest newborn blessing I can share with you right here, soon.

Would you like that?

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1 Year Old Birthday Beauty

Posted by Laura on Saturday Jul 10, 2010 Under Kids, Photography & Lettering

It’s time I made some more effort, to share some of the photo sessions I have done lately.  Although this one was actually shot at the end of 2009!  I had postponed sharing it, because I knew it would be more timely to share with the next feature post on Stitch A Wish Designs, which is posted right now over in the Crafts & Creations section of the blog.

Reason being, my wonderful client (the blessed mother of this sweet little girl), hired Michelle of Stitch A Wish Designs, to make a special tutu’d outfit for her daughter’s 1 year portraits.

So meet Miss J!

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First, she is  shown here, wearing an adorable cupcake dress that her mom found somewhere, which couldn’t have been more perfect, with the 1 candle in the cupcake!  I love it.

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Just look at these 2.  Both have me very much wrapped around their finger.  I adore them.

I have photographed Miss J, and her brother Mr. J, since each of them were born!  It has been a true blessing photographing them each time, and watching them grow.  Truth be told, both of them are usually very smiley!  I have had a number of photo shoots with Mr. J, and getting him to smile has always been a breeze.  But on this particular day, he and his sister were in very. serious. moods!!

{A} and I worked hard to get them to smile!  We were playing pitch and catch with a soft baseball, with Mr. J, and he would laugh and smile while catching and throwing, but return to his position at his sister’s chair side, between each play, very serious once again.  We tried everything.  It was almost comical. Thankfully, their parents didn’t mind much.  I love them as people for sure, but as clients they are the best to have!  Because they treasure all photos of their children, that show the wide range of their children’s moods and expressions, which is wonderful!  None of us are all smiles, all of the time.  Right?  But these 2 kiddos are are usually pretty happy-go-lucky anyway.  I was stumped this round, and that is a rare happening!  But they are both beautiful in their portraits, regardless.  I love that they did it their way, and we all love the photos anyway.

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THIS, is the outfit Michelle, at Stitch A Wish Designs, created for my client. Is it so cute, or what??  The tutu, in fuchsia, light pink and chocolate brown tulle, were perfect for her.

b80645504857f5c02bd3d92a9be682c9 1 Year Old Birthday Beauty ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThe matching onesie with the polka-dotted number one, was also custom made for her, as was the complimentary headband! I could look at this face all day!

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This photo was not actually a planned one in my head, as is the way I usually work.  Miss J. was crawling around, and sat this way facing the lights, and I took the shot.  I ended up loving it, and so did her parents!  They got it BIG, for their wall.

093a3a5fb42b6ef8941df36a4cf327cd 1 Year Old Birthday Beauty ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThe smiles came with the cake though!!  She made a quick hot mess of her birthday cupcake!  But she was so happy, we didn’t care!  She was smiling, laughing and clapping!

The photo shoot was tougher shoot than I am used to with these 2 kiddos, just trying to get a couple of some smiles out of them.  But I always enjoy this family’s company anyway.   They are beautiful and wonderful people, inside and out.  We knew we got shots to treasure none the less, smiles or not.

When all was said and done, it was later than we had anticipated, so both of our families gathered around our table, said grace,  and had some dinner together! (Michael’s home made pizza, if you must know! ; )

Is Miss J. a dolly or what?  I just love the photos we got of her at this precious milestone age.

I’m also glad I got this post up, before she turned 2!  Phew! ; )

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Blaire – A Senior

Posted by Laura on Wednesday May 26, 2010 Under Photography & Lettering, Seniors

4ab9b97a31c90ab2d34d4a436d24564f Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

There is always collectively so much work to share here in this section, between Michael and I, and yet it has ultimately become the most neglected area of the blog.  I have lots of photo sessions I never did share here, but always could still. But I know I have opted many times, to post in the other sections as an alternative most every time, and I’ve figured out why.   We haven’t really been able to read, if the posts that fit into this section, are something you all, as general blog visitors,  enjoy seeing and reading about, or not.  ??? While many do visit it when we post, even less feedback is left here, than the other sections.  So if you would please, could you let us know what your thoughts are on sharing our work here?  Michael is in the midst of his busiest season of the year with signs, boats, and truck lettering.  I am heading into my own busy season as we approach summer, with my portrait work.  So it is helpful to know if it is worthwhile to share much here, and/or how often. We would SO appreciate hearing from you, regarding this puzzle, whether in the comments or by e-mail.  After, our blog, is in part for our readers

88abe5cc6e039fcbb7ac42df9286f54e Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Meanwhile, this is Blaire.  Beautiful, isn’t she?  She is graduating this week, I believe.  Blaire will be off to college to pursue her dream of becoming a…………… teacher, I think.  I’m questioning my memory here….I get my seniors mixed up sometimes.  Anyway, I did this big senior photo session of her just a few weeks ago, and this is a small handful of her photos.  We used the locations of her family’s beautiful yard, and then a boardwalk/waters nearby, where she spent a lot of her childhood growing up.

a63c431568d275ea3a6b4e21135a721f Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

Only a couple years ago, I did her beautiful sister’s senior session.  Her name is Alexandra. Her locations were their yard also, and the very old cemetery down their street. No, she did not grow up playing there.  lol. But it was such a cool place, with the old iron gate, etc. Love places like that.  The shot on the right of the duo above, was my favorite of the session.  Of course, the quality of the image is low here on the blog, but the actual image is awesome.  She had perfect milky skin. Loved her attire for this setting. Anyway, these girls parents are fine folks indeed.  Their mother, is our eye doctor.

My client, in this case their mother, really loves my black and white work.  She has pretty good ideas of what she wants, and yet really trusts me as the professional. I love clients who are really enthusiastic and excited about the whole process, and she is just like that.  She loves contrasty images, and that is just my style, which she was so drawn to, and so hired me.   One of her optometry offices is right beside a pediatrician group practice, of which my children portrait work is displayed all throughout.  However, she also loves to see just a few in color.

49c1816d735fd18261a58895670af95c Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comSo this is Blaire again, and we are in her beautiful backyard.

815788834f9c53319d12a043097a7af6 Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comTheir backyard feels almost….magical to me. I’m quite sure little fairies live there.  In part, because of the beautiful life-size doll house amidst lovely gardens!  What lucky little girls, growing up as sisters close in age, with this charming little doll house, to make the most of their imagination with.  The outside is painted a celery green, the roof is shingled, it has a charming front door, and yes, the inside is completely finished as well!  Look at the curtains in the windows!  Oh……I forgot for a minute there that the post is about my lovely senior subject.  But do you love that dollhouse or what?  I think it’s a dream. I want one.  So what if I’m in my 40′s?  What’s that got to do with the price of eggs, in France?  I would use the house as a drawing and painting studio.  And for some of that q-word, when needed.  Quiet.

81d28a11737cdf1e2a519780a6451731 Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThe front yard is just as beautiful.  I love the stone walls and steps.  More flowers and beautiful landscaping.

faeca80db5dc4ade65d637c60a7cb0b1 Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

eb7896563d111609a5aa57d9f3a45e13 Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThe boardwalk is in the downright CHARMING village of Sandwich.  I love villages.  I can’t tell you how much.  I would live in Sandwich, if I could. In a very old house.

684df365febfee6fc67920a0a1de2dbb Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

6885e60e5653faadecd2f6a9e20e969b Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comAs I said, Blaire grow up at this boardwalk.  She used to jump off the bridge into the water!

I love doing all I can, to make senior’s photos very personal.  While this work session is actually far more traditional than my typical work, I still enjoyed it very much, and they did indeed have a very personal touch to work with:  Their late grandfather’s name is part of the boardwalk, and we incorporated it.

52ddd4c995f90f6487ba317501fecb7d Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.com

8a5857aa411c7d54916abab4c3f8211f Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comThis shot above was the one they loved the very most.  Big portrait of this one.  They also ordered a 12 Image Session Album, and several 8×10′s.  The same exact order, and album, as for her sister 2 years ago.  The albums are gorgeous.  They are black leather, matted pages of 5×7′s, and come in a satin lined black box.

I have to tell you…..I was freaking out, walking along this boardwalk, and there was no hiding it!!  I’m a bit afraid of heights.  The boardwalk is very high at parts, over water sometimes, way too narrow for me, with no side railing or anything obviously, and wouldn’t you know it…….the wind was blowing!  I was petrified.  Not that I am light enough for the wind to blow off the boardwalk (lol), but….the fear is still there!  Honestly…..I was holding onto the back belt loop on the back of Blaire’s pants, because she was walking in front of me. I yelped a scream a few times. Professional, I am. Huh?

ec9b1349afde4bf0a96eea12640712c5 Blaire   A Senior ourhouseofjoyfulnoise.comBlaire was a joy to shoot, just as her sister was.  But…..there aren’t any more kids in the family!  I’m going to suggest a family photo session at my next eye appointment, for sometimes next summer, when both girls are home.   I’d just like to see them all again, and all together. They are a great family, and I felt honored they hired me, based on my work.

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