I’m stopping by to let you know that during this Summer I am still open for business. Many family photographers decide not to work and are taking their time off. That’s totally okay because this is a very personal decision to make.
However, instead of a variety of different packages and prices, with all that’s happening right now, I decided to offer 30 minutes long minis in the comfort of your own front porch or back yard. I want to make it as easy as possible for all my clients!
Don’t worry! YOUR FRONT or BACK YARD is AWESOME FOR FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHY SESSIONS – I promise you!
I have spent countless hours driving around the Bay Area and testing new locations. I still do that, because I have clients who’ve been with me for the last 7 years and I don’t want to run out of new locations to offer them each year!
All outdoor photographers have their “super secret” list of favorite locations they are ready to recommend for their clients. I have such a list as well. But when the world turns topsy-turvy the list is as useless as the list you make for the hospital before your labor. Do you know what list I’m talking about?
I was asked to make such a list for the doctors and nurses before my first daughter was born. They told me to write my entire plan for the delivery.
So I went ambitious:
- no painkillers,
- vaginal delivery,
But when the labor came, I was begging for epidural, and when my husband opened his mouth and this sentence got out of him: “but honey we had a different plan” I was about to shred him to pieces.
So, yeah… the list of beautiful locations can wait for another time… It’s still available for my clients if they want it…
I want to make it as easy as possible for my clients. Plus those mini sessions are designed to be as affordable as possible, too.
With the right attitude and the right angle, we can make anything work. Plus, these are special times. And special times call for special solutions 🙂
MAKE SURE TO TAKE YOUR HOLIDAY CARDS PICTURES THIS YEAR A LITTLE EARLIER…
As the world is absolutely unstable right now, and nothing is for sure, I really recommend taking care of your FALL pictures this SUMMER.
There are some predictions that the shelter in place (in its full potential) is going to return this Fall. That means no sessions, again 🙁 So, I really want everybody to start thinking about their family photos a little earlier this year. It might feel weird, but I think it’s also awesome to think outside of the box.
I’m open for sweet and short (not to mention fun) sessions:
- on your front porch,
- in your backyard,
- in-home lifestyle, like baking cookies or doing crafts and arts or hanging out with your pet.
No matter the size of the pet. I’m pretty pet friendly.
As always I’m very open to hiking sessions or beach sessions. If you’re feeling adventurous or simply want to document your family having fun somewhere outside your home, that’s absolutely fine. Let’s make it fun, short, and filled with as many kisses and hugs as possible.
AFFORDABLE PRICE and A GREAT GIFT
The sessions I’m offering have two prices:
- $175 for 10 images if you want it super short and kept to a minimum!
- $250 for all images from the session
All images are going to be delivered online via online gallery and you will be able to purchase additional images after you see them – in a situation where you book the 10 images package but after you see the gallery you will want them all. And I know that this is going to happen because so far all my recent clients have done that! Hahaha!
This would be also a wonderful gift for families that you know could use a cheer-up these days! Or just for your sister or brother or a bestie!
Use the contact page to schedule your session!!!
See you soon!
A few weeks ago I set a new picture as my desktop background. A picture very special to my heart. My 3 girls and I – my daughters and my old lady Di (it’s the picture you see above). On the day I took it we already knew we have only a few days left with the old lady and my heart was already broken. She was my everything. My best friend. My companion and the only baby sitter of my kids I ever had.
On that day I put my nice shoes on and we went to the park to celebrate. Celebrate us and our time together. My sweet, old lady is gone and has been for many years now, but she will be in my heart for a lifetime.
I love looking at all the memories we made together. All the moments captured forever.
11 months ago I decided to add another four-legged family member because one heartbreak is not enough, I guess. Rambunctious Oreo. He even has his own Instagram, btw.
This past weekend I made an extra effort to celebrate him and my girls. Us together. Our time, the way we play. The way we hug. The way we love each other.
I know, someday these moments will bring tears to my eyes, just like all the memories of Lady Di. But that’s how it all goes.
So, now is your turn to make memories of the special hugs and kisses and playful moments engraved in your heart forever. The mustard flowers are popping up and it’s the perfect time to celebrate.
Let’s celebrate in joyful YELLOW FLOWERS that are popping out already!
Celebrate whatever you want.
Celebrate Your family.
Celebrate Your best friend: A human, a dog or a guinea pig.
Because the perfect time is now.
In the past, I had clients celebrating Breastfeeding moments perfectly hidden in the tall flowers or proudly standing in the joyful yellows!
I had pregnant mamas and a lot of families just having fun!
And this year, it’s your turn!
The fields don’t last long so book your session ASAP!
It’s that time of the year, can you feel it!? I can! It’s time to get your Fall family pictures done!!! Oh, yes!!! I’m so excited for this Fall.
The season is in full blast, and I’m almost completely booked in October. That makes my heart sing because it means that so many families trusted me with their family portraits again! I just want to put exclamation marks at the end of almost every single sentence in this post because I’m just that excited!!! And honestly, I don’t get excited that easily.
The location for this mini session is absolutely gorgeous. There is variety of beautiful backgrounds. All my clients who have had sessions with me there were always very happy with the images we created there.
If you’re interested in Fall mini sessions with me please follow this link and choose November 9th as your session date. After you pick your date and your time slot I’ll contact you personally to go over the details of your session.
You’re going to receive recommendations on how to prepare for your session, what to wear and simply what to expect when working with me.
If you’d like me to create for you outstanding Fall family portraits let’s connect!!!
Even better, sign up for the membership to Ewa Samples Photography, so you won’t have to miss on any photo opportunities throughout the entire year.
If membership is not for you simply get on my newsletter list so you’re always up to date about any specials, model calls and events (like workshops) I run through the year!
“Big Ideas Start Small” – Summer challenge for kids (and their parents)
Last Christmas my daughter attempted creating an online store. She was selling one of her paintings. She participated in creating a short video about it and the rest was done by me, her mama! We posted it once, and we forgot about it. The whole thing wasn’t a big hit.
We did nothing else to market it and spread the word about her little adventure.
We did, what many first timers do… We planted the seed but never watered the soil after that.
Since then, she asked me countless times if we can do more, so she can sell more and support WWF. In other words, if I can do more to help her out. I told her, she will need to step up her game. I’ll support her and give her as much of my time and knowledge as I have, but the rest must to be done by her.
Every time I talked about running a business and about all the responsibilities that come with it her eyes glazed over and I knew I lost her.
It was simply boring.
Our life was a little crazy over the last year or so. I wasn’t pushing her to do anything with it. There was a lot happening already. However, with the cancelation of my Kids Photography Workshop, a space opened up for something I’ve been meaning to organize for a long time:
Business workshop for kids!!!!
With all that in mind I decided to create something more fun. Something with a simple language that a kid can understand. Plus engaging and relatable content would also be nice! (right?)
Coming up with a short list of MUST KNOW topics for this was hard. There is so much I’d wanted to cover. However, I think I got the essentials down! We will find out if I’m right while putting all the bullet points into a practice over the next several weeks 😉
I gathered a small (but strong) group and we are up for an adventure!
By the end of this Summer we are going to have small businesses opened and running!
We will cover such topics as branding, connecting with their clients through storytelling, web design, creative writing, and money (of course).
During this workshop all participants are going to learn how to:
- name and connect with their superpowers (aka unique talents),
- come up with a interesting concept for their business based on the unique skills they already have,
- create a brand,
- create simple marketing campaign from scratch,
- create a website,
- start their business with mostly free tools!!!
- and more…
We will have trips to local businesses and listen to other CEO’s stories.
Our first meeting was a big hit!
All the girls got notebooks and sticker books.
We set up 3 main goals for our businesses.
Lead. Serve. Impact.
We had really great brainstorming session. All the girls supported each other and participated with their own ideas. Non of them had to think long to be able to list a few causes that they can support with their business. Animal shelters, homeless shelters and kids hospitals, animal hospitals, and more! WOW!
Our team is made out of 4 girls. Two are my daughters and two are Carlie’s.
Carlie is the owner of Lehrfeld Farm in San Martin. And we are using her studio for our Summer Challenge meetings.
We are planning a few adventurous field trips already. However, we will have some exciting guest in the studio as well.
Plus we always have fun afterwards:
Stay tuned to see what those young enterpreneurs will create.
This is my second year of running Summer kids photography workshop.
And I know with these classes kids get quite the great mix of all that.
Is the kids photography workshop a good fit for your child?
First of all, I don’t know a child who would be absolutely mad for giving him/her a phone and the permission to play with it.
Second of all, this workshop is going to show the kids new ways for using their creativity. You will be amazed how interesting their point of view is.
Like, back in April my older daughter (9 years old) entered her very short (and silly) video to Poppy Jasper International Film Festival. The video was played in front of an audience at the Gavilan College in Gilroy. It was really a great day for her! I have to mention that all the clips for the video were made on my iPhone and the entire video was put together on an iPad.
My daughter is absolutely fluent with iMovie (iPad or iPhone version). She doesn’t have much access to games and silly apps. However, if she mentions making a video or editing pictures I tend to say YES to the time in front of a mobile device.
This workshop is going to teach kids the basic knowledge about photography. All of that without the boring stuff necessary to master DSLR cameras.
I’ve seen kids snapping killer black and white images after going through this workshop. Something they were not even considering before.
If you want your kid to be able to look around and see the beauty in a leaf or an old fence… well, this workshop is the way to go about it.
This workshop is for kids who are curious, love outdoors and art.
If your kid is not into art, this is a great introduction to this subject.
During my own battles with self-esteem and so many different issues I’ve learned that photography has been an amazing addition to the tools I’ve developed through the years.
Being able to turn my smartphone into a tool that helps me to express myself feels good. I can no longer say I’m bored if I have my phone with working camera and a few editing apps available.
I’m a strong believer that the more we practice being creative the easier it comes to us. So, if you want your little one to gain great skills but also practice their creativity, secure their spot today!
…and, let’s get creative together!
SPRING MINI SESSIONS ARE HERE!
Do you feel Spring in the air? Or it’s just me?
I kid you not, I get outside and I can smell Spring. Like literally I can smell it. Fresh, juicy green grass. The refreshing air after the rain. The birds chirping.
This weather we’re having right now reminds me of Summer rain in Poland. Well, a little warmer Summer rain.
Anywho, the rain and than the warmth means only one thing in here… It’s time to scout mustard flowers locations…
And that’s exactly what I did this week, and I’m excited to announce MUSTARD FLOWERS MINIS… (follow the link to read the details and see some breathtaking mustard flowers images from past years)
To stay on top of all the events and specials I run through the year sign up for my newsletter. Some of them do not go public so it’s always great to be on that list and get all the exclusive offers. Plus I’m planning to release lots of tutorials and educational materials this year. If you on my list you’re going to be one of the very first ones to hear about them. Test them. Benefit from them and be inspired by them if you on that list!
This year Halloween came surprisingly early. We got our first costume about 2 weeks ago. Not like I planned it. We went to get a shampoo to be precise. We came back with Halloween costume. Of course, as soon as we got the first one we had to go shopping for the second. You know how that goes when you have more than one kiddo. As soon as we got both we went to take Halloween pictures. Because for once in my lifetime I wasn’t running behind with things… Haha.
It always blows my mind how a costume can make a child happy. They are always looking forward to the day when they can dress up in them and run around. And it’s only because of them I organize the Halloween Portrait Playdate each year. They always remind me of it when October sneaks on on me.
“Hey, Mom?! Are you doing the Halloween Playdate this year?”
And I’m like, oh shut… Time to put the add together… If not those two, I’m not sure if my business would survive (just kidding)
So, just so you know. There is this thing going on this Sunday, October 14th from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.
Halloween Portrait Playdate.
Absolutely free to attend if you come in your Halloween costumes. After the event all participants will get online galleries with their images to make whatever purchases they want from there. For detailed pricing of the available packages and to get your FREE ticket head over here.
Hope to see you there. And I hope to create super fun Halloween Pictures of your Little Ones or even better – of your entire family!
To stay on top of all the events and specials I run through the year sign up for my newsletter. Some of them do not go public so it’s always great to be on that list and get all the exclusive offers.
Each year, I get families at the end of October or even in November frantically trying to book a fall photo session. (I know almost every photographer experiences that during the Fall season).
So this whole week what I’ve been doing with my blog posts is to remind you to schedule your Fall session TODAY! Don’t wait till November! PLEASE! Often October is the last call to do so! If not booking, start your researching TODAY!
I don’t have to be your photographer. I’m not writing this post (or any of the previous ones) to convince you to buy my services, although I wouldn’t mind that (wink, wink). I write it to let you know that to research a good photographer takes time. To find the one that matches your style, and budget takes effort.
Waiting until the very last moment is not the best decision. What you might find are photographers who might not be the best fit for you and your family.
When you leave it until later, you might have to miss the opportunity to update your family portraits all together, or you will have to go with a photographer who has some spots available but is not who you would really want to work with (because the one you would want to work with is totally booked already).
Too late for Fall Photo Session?
Fall photo sessions are very popular because many people like to have current images of their family for Holiday Cards. However, I always say: why wait? Do it in May. Hell, do it in April when everything is blooming and use those images for your cards. Nobody’s going to care. Actually, your card will stand out with family portraits done on the beach or in blooming orchards…
Don’t want to frantically look for a new photographer each year? Well, grab this gift from me, and stay tuned for all my minis, specials, and other fun family session ideas I share with my subscribers.
How about if I told you, you can get your pumpkin and a photo session all at once? Well, you can! Last year I had so much fun with my kids at the local pumpkin patch, that this year I decided to offer special mini sessions.
As I in my previous post, the Fall is here. And I hope you’re ready for it photography wise.
This year, I’ll be opening a few spots for absolutely cute and sweet pumpkin patch minis. If you want to get a spot or hear more about it head over here. These minis are one of a kind. Full of Fall feel, happiness, and the smell of hey and pumpkins. Just like with most of my minis, because of the limited time, and limited availability I’ll be offering them only to my newsletter subscribers. Sing up if you’re interested. It’s free 🙂
Spread the love by sharing this with a friend or a family member who’d be interested in getting their pictures done at a pumpkin patch. Because WHY NOT? It’s super fun!
So, are you’re ready to make some magic this Fall with me or have pumpkin patch family fun time?
Grab this gift first, and schedule your first session, TODAY! My weekend dates in September are booked however there is still time to create beautiful memories in October and November. Well, even December is cool, if you like to splash in puddles! Just don’t wait till then to schedule your session.
This Smash Cake in one of my favorite locations in Saratoga was a crazy one. Normally a quiet place, this park turned into a corporate event on the day of our session.
I got to the location a little earlier. To my big surprise, what I saw is the entrance being blocked by a “corporate event” sign. Loud, live band music is playing. The park is swarmed with people. The scent of BBQ and grilled sausage is filling the air. And I’m panicking.
I called the client, explained what’s happening, and promised I’ll find a great solution to this before they get here.
I quickly started listing all the locations I knew in the area. And there is a few. However, the conclusion was simple. We didn’t have the time to make the drive to any of them before we would lose the gorgeous light. With a few minutes to spare, I went inside for a hunt for the best spot in the swarmed with people park. As I entered it, I realized, I know just the right place. I was not mistaken.
We were able to do the entire session without a single person bothering us on the back of the entire party. However, the smell of the bbq and grilled sausage was really hunting me the entire time. LOL
Saratoga Smash Cake Session
After the session, Kristen and her family gave me the best gift a photographer can get. A beautiful review:
AMAZING! Our family session was on Sunday night and it’s Tuesday and we already have our pictures! Ewa was great with our son and was able to improvise when the park where we were planning to have our session was closed! She knew there was a clearing, sort of in the woods, towards the back of the park and it was the perfect backdrop for our family session. The pictures are fantastic and I would recommend Ewa over and over!
If you’re ready to make some magic this Fall with me, grab this gift from me, and schedule your first session, TODAY! My weekend dates in September are booked however there is still time to create beautiful memories in October and November. Well, even December is cool, if you like to splash in puddles!
Today, I’d like to chat a little about ways how you can rock back to school pictures. No matter what camera you have. No matter what props you want to use or how much time you have. You don’t have to follow all those steps. Focus on one if you want, and you will see a huge improvement in your experience! Save yourself sanity, and at the same time create fun memories.
Don’t over think it. Don’t overstress!
The steps in this post are named by the excuses many of the parents have in order to not to do the back-to-school pictures of their kids. Many just rather go with snapping a quick image on the 1st day while the kids are running out the door (already late!)
Here are the excuses (aka steps) and how to overcome them:
1.”My kid doesn’t want to go with MY IDEAS.”
No biggie. In years of working with kids on a different level of excitement when it comes to being photographed, it is important to just let it go. Sometimes. Pick your fights wisely, I say.
Breathe in and then breathe out. Then go with the flow. You have to be able to sacrifice your super great ideas for having any pictures at all.
I know it all too well, myself.
I have a girl who’s always willing to do what I come up with + some of her crazy ideas.
I also have a girl who often changes her mind as quickly as a woman (only) can do it. By the time I’m ready to click the shutter button, she’s already changed her mind and doesn’t want to do what we earlier established. She doesn’t want to wear what I put on her. And she doesn’t want to be at that particular location anymore.
AND if we don’t change it immediately, well, I might as well put my camera back in my bag and forget about everything.
Ok! I’m exaggerating the whole picture, but you know what I’m talking about. If not… well, you’re lucky! haha!
As I mentioned before, just go with the flow. After you done with photographing what the little one had in mind for the whole session (this is exactly what’s going to happen in many, many cases!), add fun text in Photoshop or Canva. You can also use phone editing apps to add text (something like Snapseed)
2. “I don’t have any props.”
Backpack. Lunchbox. Cute glasses. Cute hairstyle. Fun outfit. And you good to go.
Don’t forget about documenting the details. You might remember them today. In a few years, they’ll become just a foggy blur. You’ll be happy you took pictures of the cute socks or the cute lunch box your kid was using in 1st or 2nd or 6th grade.
3. “I don’t have any interesting background”
Yes, you do!
Just declutter a small space on your backyard / front yard.
Walk your kid to school and take a picture with school buses in the background. (but wait for most of the crowd to disappear).
Just remember to avoid photographing your kids in front of the school sign with the whole name and address on it! Please keep your kids safe. Nobody has to know where your kids go to school. I know it’s easy to figure those things out, but why make it easy on the wrong kind of people.
Go to the park. Go to the library.
Just remember to ask for a permission if you’re planning to take pictures in buildings and other public places. Be careful with that. You might not get in trouble if you’re a private person shooting your own kids, but just to be safe. It doesn’t hurt to ask.
Note side: Thank you to Morgan Hill Library for being a part of my daughter’s stylized photo shoot. Check their FB page for more shots from adventures of my private Pippi Longstocking.
4. “The whole day is SO HECTIC. I just don’t have the time!!! And I didn’t even have MY COFFEE yet” – says every mom on the 1st day of school.
Yep! That’s why back to school pictures don’t have to (or even shouldn’t) be done ON THAT PARTICULAR DAY (the 1st day of school). The kids don’t care. They will be happy if you throw an idea out there for dressing up and going out to goof off with the school supplies and what not.
Go for a walk the day before the 1st day of school.
Don’t forget to do it during the golden hour for easier shooting and for not having to deal with the harsh light. I often don’t do it because I like to make my life harder, every chance I get. And I actually like to work with all kinds of light and the full bright sun doesn’t scare me that much. However, to save your sanity and to get really nice images of your kids, just wait to one hour before the sunset and then go out and shoot!
If not the day before then wait for the weekend to come, and then get them out and play with all their school supplies.
For most of the time, they will be more relaxed and ready to be themselves.
Because who is him/herself on the 1st day of school??!?!?!
5. If you have more than one kiddo, try to “catch” them together.
In our case, getting these two together in one picture is like trying to catch a fish with bare hands.
So, if I was able to do it, YOU CAN DO IT, too!
Ask them to touch their noses. Or ask them to tickle each other. Anything to get them close enough and playful enough.
6. “I can’t take good pictures.”
Well, that’s what professional photographers are for. Just saying. 😜
And before you go, I felt generous today and made these very simple but colorful free printable lunch box notes. Want it, grab it. Don’t want it, don’t grab it.
And if you’re feeling generous today, left a comment, share this post or send me a virtual hug.
If you’d like me to photograph some of your #1st day of school adventures let me know!!! I’m here to help you create amazing memories.
Even better, sign up for the membership to Ewa Samples Photography, so you won’t have to miss on any photo opportunities through the entire year!
Anybody up for a Mom and Me Beach Session?!? I am!!!
Earlier this year I had a session with Caroline for Mother’s Day. And right then she said, we need to get together for a beach session this year.
So we did, last week. It’s more of a playdate when we meet, to be honest with you. The whole session part takes us about 15 minutes. But then we spent 4 hours talking while the kids are in their happy state.
Caroline comes to update her mom & me pictures at least once a year. She’s been doing it for the last 5 years.
I encourage all moms to jump on board.
Because what’s today needs to be cherished as bold as possible. Don’t wait for the better you. For the thinner you. For You that you hope to be tomorrow or in 6 months or a year.
Don’t wait for permission to celebrate yourself or whatever you’re going through in your life right now.
The water has been present in the last month quite a lot, as you can see in my Instagram feed 🏊🏻[instagram-feed]
And it feels like when I want to escape for a little, water is where I’m heading. The sound of water in my ears especially. The sound of water or the quiet world it gives. It calms my mind.
The sound of the ocean and water calms me, and I recently started to listen to white noise sounds for meditation and relaxation purposes. I am sharing one video I found on youtube. If you’ve never tried white noise sounds you should check it out.
Let’s hop to the beach someday!
Here are some dates for beach sessions available through July and August. Hop on board TODAY! Pick a date. Weekday or weekend. Pick a package and pick THE dress… All done.
If you want to do it on any other days not listed in the form or on a different beach, let me know. I’ll see what we can do about it! 🙂