Dunes & Canyons
(nyc portrait photographer, baby photography nyc)

Living in NYC, you tend to forget what a real sunset looks like. With houses and skyscrapers, sunset for us comes an hour or two early. I venture out west about once a year, and submerge myself in the landscape. I started out as a landscape photographer, and a part of me will always find the natural beauty of the world around us captivating. If you can stand the 130ºF temperatures, and be prepared to drive (a lot), there is a whole new world, with photographic opportunities around every corner.

This year I’ve paid homage to the Antelope Canyon in Arizona, and Death Valley in California. Antelope Canyon is one of those wonders that nobody knew about 20 years ago. Tucked away in Navajo Nation, this canyon, carved by water over millions of years, has an almost supernatural feel to it. You can’t help but stand in awe, as the sun casts purple and red hues throughout its sandstone slots. This is definitely where the natives prayed, long before the New World was discovered. Today, you’ll find more photographers here than anywhere else on earth (okay, maybe except at the Oscars). There is a thousand perspectives, ranging from patterns and shapes, to complex colors and shades. Definitely worth visiting again (though this time, perhaps in the off-season).

The first photo is of the Horseshoe Bend, near Page, Arizona. For anyone passing through, this is a must. The photo doesn’t sufficiently capture the size of the canyon, carved by the Colorado River, which ultimately flows through the Grand Canyon. Slips and falls are common, and there’s no guardrail. You have to lay on your stomach, and hang over the cliff to get a viewpoint such as this. It’s a thrill.

The last two photos were taken in Death Valley National Park. The first of the two is my favorite. Many people think it’s snow. It’s salt in fact. Crystalized rock hard, it’s like walking on needles (best leave your flip-flops at home for this one). You have to venture about a mile from the road to get to these mesmerizing formations. Even at sunset, the temperatures hover around 130°F, and there’s not a soul (or sound) around. Not even a breeze. You feel like you’ve landed on the moon.

Please enjoy these images, and I hope you welcome a little departure from our usual portraiture!

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Why does professional photography cost more?
(nyc family photographer, baby photography studio)

Professional photo of your family or children turns any room into a beautiful room. NYC Family Photographer

A professional portrait of your children and family is a piece of art that you will cherish for a lifetime. It is not a snapshot solely for Twitter and Facebook. It is a finely crafted masterpiece, which will remind you of those precious times that pass so quickly. The money you invest isn’t just for my undivided attention. It also covers more than a decade of experience in photography and retouching, tens of thousands of dollars worth of the latest equipment and software, and the inherent expenses of running a legitimate business.

When the average person spends between $800 to $3000 on professional family photography, some may ask, “Why is it so expensive when you only photograph for one to two hours?” The simple truth is that A LOT more goes into creating beautiful, one-of-a-kind pieces of art than the session time. In fact, of all the hours we commit to our photography business, I get to hold my camera only about 5% of the time! So, let’s take a behind-the-scenes look at the cost of professional portrait photography.

Your session of 1-2 hours is only a small portion of the time involved in the creation of your custom artwork. We spend 12-20 hours on each client, including emails, phone consultations, charging and testing of equipment, prep time, uploading images, backing up original files (in multiple locations for redundancy), sorting through hundreds of images, retouching of final images, creating a private gallery, order processing, and designing custom products (e.g. books, CD cases, cards). Not to mention, the time required for other business-related tasks!

You’ll enjoy the benefits of tens of thousands of dollars invested in top-of-the-line camera equipment, lenses and software – all of which require constant maintenance and upgrades. The costs of running a studio are substantial. A powerful computer is only the beginning. Multiple display screens, color-calibration, stacks of hard-drives, and expensive retouching software are just the tip of the iceberg. There are also the costs of mortgage, insurance, taxes, accounting, administration, business development, website maintenance, advertising and marketing.

You are investing in my highly specialized skill and artistic vision. I have spent more than a decade studying the craft of baby and family photography and retouching. I’ve taken countless classes, and dedicated hundreds of hours in training and invaluable experience to establish my repertoire. It has taken a great deal of time and effort to build my portfolio, and I continue to enhance these abilities on an ongoing basis.

In a world of commodities, we can easily justify the purchase of a luxury automobile or a fancy gadget, both of which lose their appeal quickly and need to be replaced. And, yet, some people have trouble justifying the purchase of the most beautiful kind of art – that which captures the essence of their loved ones. It will not only decorate your home, and draw praise from guests, but will remind you of a wonderful time that has long since passed. A memory, beautifully photographed, printed and framed, will only grow more priceless with age.

Baby Photography NYC

the investment of custom photography
(baby photography, baby photographer nyc)

The explosion of digital photography, online sharing, home printing, and social media over the last decade makes it easier than ever to capture those everyday (and special) moments. We are thrilled that the art of photography has become more accessible to the hobbyist. Often times our clients have top of the line gear, similar to ours, and are well versed in how to use it. But even with all of the tools and resources so widely available, and the ability to capture the every day, nothing beats the work of an accomplished professional photographer to document your family, in its entirety. Yes, we know you’ll be in some of the images at your cousin’s wedding… and of course there are all your own family milestones… but the return on the investment of capturing who you are, today, is enormous. There is so much to gain from a custom, professional photography session, one that is created specifically for you, solely for that purpose.

“Yeah, I know… but really, why… why do I need to hire a professional photographer to do that?”

Some portion of the answer is intangible (and emotional). Never have we heard from client “I wish I didn’t professionally photograph my family.” Rather, many times we have heard “I didn’t realize how important it was until after I saw the images.“ And occasionally we’ve even heard “I didn’t want to do it until I saw a friend’s images, then I realized I wanted the same for my family!”

The remainder of the answer is related to quality and end result:

• having a professional document what they see creates a story that is extremely different than one created by handing over your camera to your uncle or an aspiring photographer friend

• being able to relax and unwind, and pose yourself naturally, with a bit of professional guidance is far superior to striking your one go-to pose with your “camera ready smile” and hoping it works

• having an entire series of images, rather than just one good one, allows you to create wall galleries, or even albums, that pause and capture an exact point in time with your family

• having an entire series of technically correct images, rather than ones that are too bright or too dark, unfocused or incorrectly lit, will enable you to proudly share and display the end result without needing to rely on those infamous disclaimers (“I know it’s not in focus, but I love it anyway!”)

That said, high quality professional photography can be expensive – and that is because custom art commands value. Unless you have a bit of disposable income, you need to consider it as an investment the same way you would consider any other purchase for your home. You certainly don’t want to have to do it over (and pay twice!), or get less than what you expected. You should select your photographer based on their style, area of expertise, quality, reputation, brand, and your expectations for an end result.

Here are some points that we think are worth extra consideration as you plan your family photography session:

• Experience: It is great to get a bargain with someone who is just building their portfolio. However for guaranteed results, you should be able to view an entire portfolio of images that demonstrate a consistency in style and output so that you can be confident in the end result you will receive. If you have doubts, ask to view a few complete sessions.

• Style: Consider whether you are looking for a classic portrait, timeless black and whites, ethereal storybook art or a photojournalistic “day in the life.” Spend time reviewing multiple photographer’s online portfolios to really understand their style and find one that resonates with you. Make sure you select a style because the end result is what YOU desire, not just what’s trendy on Facebook this week! Will that style stand the test of time and in 10 years, and will it still make sense for you?

• Product portfolio: Think about what you want to DO with your images. It’s best to have a goal, whether it be a specific family image for over your formal fireplace, canvases for a playroom wall, a classic framed display for a stairway wall or lovely coffee table keepsake albums. Once you select a photographer based on experience and style, make sure you review what products they offer, and have a conversation about your end goals to ensure they can deliver quality products that will meet your expectations. At the end of the experience, the art you purchase will be the final product and you need to love it.

• Stance on “Getting the Disk”: Do not assume that getting it “all” from a digital package is the best route to go. Deciding that you need everything in a digital format is a hasty decision to make if you haven’t even shot your session. Once you view your gallery, you may instantly decide which images you must have on your walls, and which in an album, and those that you want as digital files. Don’t rule out a photographer based on their willingness (or price point) to sell a session in a digital format… trust that they have experience in pulling together collections for clients that will meet their needs. You will want to enjoy your images everyday in your home…not left on a disk in a drawer.

• Overall Relationship & Style of Communication: You have to be able to connect with your photographer. If you enjoy a hands-on style, that is casual, in touch and friendly, you are going to need to find one that also works in that style. If the “feel good” aspect isn’t as important, but the end result is, that’s another consideration. There are many wonderful clients and many wonderful photographers, but like picking the perfect spouse, nanny or even best friend, not everyone is a fit, but there is someone for everyone. If you have doubts, pick up the phone and chat about how you connect best, and talk about your overall style and goals.

Typical client feedback from those who have invested in quality custom photography:
“A professional family photographer has the patience and experience to capture amazing portraits. As a hobbyist shooter and their mom, my kids know most of my tricks, so getting them to cooperate is a challenge. Custom photography allows me leave the work and worry up to someone else, who I trust to capture images that will grace our walls for a lifetime.”

“I wanted two things… a healthy baby and newborn photos. What I got was a moment in time captured in the most beautiful photographs. Every time I look at them, I am reminded of those first few weeks with my son, when everything was new (and a little scary), and he smiled for the camera, before he even knew he could. I never could have captured that on my own.”

“I have multiple single images of my family that I treasure. They are beautiful and meaningful to me, for so many reasons. They are on Facebook, and printed in 5X7 frames next to my bed. But once a year I select a professional to photograph my family and from those sessions, I have full albums of images, each one technical perfection combined with artistry, and those are the ones that are displayed on my walls, are given as gifts to family members, and are showcased in beautiful albums.”

So do your research, find a professional family photographer whom you click (no pun intended) with, and work together to create something that you and future generations will treasure forever.

Thanks so much to Design Aglow (DesignAglow.com) for this incredibly helpful article!!

See our Baby Photography Website. Sophie and I LOVE taking baby photos. Give us a call at 212.544.0102 or drop us an email to schedule your baby photography session. You can find more of our baby photography and see other baby photos on our blog.

Baby Photography by Michael Kormos, NYC Baby Photography.

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Selecting a Newborn Photographer
(newborn photography, newborn photographer nyc)

We found this article on NewbornPhotography.com, and thought it would be helpful to share with our readers. It provides very helpful recommendations for choosing the right newborn photographer for your family. Hope you enjoy!!

Congratulations! Expecting a child is undoubtedly the most exciting time in your life and you must have a million questions about newborn photography; what it is, how to hire a newborn photographer, where to find one, and what to look for. Well, this is the place for you! Lets start by highlighting a few questions that you might want to ask your potential newborn photographers, in hopes of narrowing down someone that is right for you!

1. Portfolio
Ask to see their portfolio, or just take some time and go through their website. Every newborn photographer has a different style and vision. Photography is a very personal experience, and regardless of trends or what is in ‘style’ make sure that you choose a photographer that’s right for you. Choose a newborn photographer whose work you can’t live without – that pulls on your heart strings, and speaks to you. This is a moment in time that you will never be able to get back – so take your time, find the photography style that you love, as these photographs will become a part of your family history for generations.

2. Testimonials & References
Once you have narrowed down your choices, why not ask for testimonials or references? As well as being a skilled photographer, the individual photographing your newborn will also be a caregiver for your infant during the 2-hour session, posing, soothing, and handling the most important and fragile person in your life.

3. Experience
Ask how long they have been in business, and what education they have. An experienced newborn photographer will know all of the industry secrets about posing, soothing and most importantly safety for your newborn. There are many workshops and newborn photography courses that are available for photographers that cover topics like safety and comfort of your child during the session – why not ask where they learned their skills from? This is an important question, and will help you decide if they are right fit for you.

4. Investment
This is the last thing we mention, for a reason. The investment of a newborn session differs from photographer to photographer, and where you live. Although cost is a factor and rightfully so, try not to make it the only factor.

These photographs will be in your family for generations, they will be shown again in 30 years time at your child’s wedding, then resurface when your child is expecting their own baby. When you hold these photographs in 35-40 years time, you will close your eyes and be able to recall everything about your child when they were newborns – their baby ‘smell’, the warmth of their bodies, their little fingers and toes. These photographs will not only serve as documentation – they will serve as food for your soul. Although cost is a factor, it shouldn’t be the deciding factor. Choose a professional newborn photographer that will provide you with stunning images that you can’t live without.

For more information on Newborn Photography and recommendations to make the most of your experience, please visit www.newbornphotography.com.

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