Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween!


It's been a big week at the Gwozdz house!

Thing 1 has lost her fourth tooth. Since it's not her first tooth, you may ask why the fourth tooth is such a big deal. Well this one is a big deal because she SWALLOWED IT. I was a little panicked, imagining a perforated intestine from that little tooth, but a call to Papa Don put me at ease (for those of you who don't know, my Dad is a dentist). Since then we have been teasing her not to let it bite her on the tush on its way out. LOL! She was pretty upset because she thought the Tooth Fairy would not come without an actual tooth to put out, but she was happy this morning to find a golden dollar and a duckie key chain on her nightstand.

fourth tooth BLOG

The big news for Thing 2 this week the arrival of the BIG BOY BED. We didn't want to transition him out of the crib until he was done napping, and didn't want to go bed shopping until the Carson's warehouse was having their big annual furniture sale. As fate would have it, both of those things came together this month and hence - the big boy bed is here! He loves to help his father work with tools, and could not wait to help take apart his crib. I must admit to getting a little choked up watching my baby take apart his own crib. He picked out a monster-themed comforter and is so excited with it. And I am happy to say that the transition has gone rather smoothly.

Big Boy Bed BLOG

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Seven and half months old...

and eyes that can stop traffic.

0390 BLOG

His big sister and brother are in first grade and kindergarten (respectively), and were arguing over who got to hold him for the pictures. Too cute!


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Beautiful Inside & Out

Congratulations to my dear friend S, who is expecting her first baby around Thanksgiving. This time of year holds a special place in my heart because both of my kids are Thanksgiving babies. I had the pleasure (not!) of hospital turkey twice, as my daughter was born the day before Thanksgiving in 2002, and my son was born two days before Thanksgiving in 2005.

I have known S since we were 14 years old, and we attended both high school and college together. I know that she is going to be a great mom because she has such a strong nurturing instinct. Plus, she is always prepared. Even when we were teens, if you ever needed a band-aid, tissue, or tylenol, she would inevitably have what you needed right there in her purse.

Good luck, S & R! Just a few more weeks till you guys meet your little miracle.




P.S. One of the upsides to being my friend is that I will shoot pictures for you. One of the downsides of being my friend is that I will process everyone else's pictures ahead of yours. LOL! Thanks for your patience, S&R. Proofs coming soon!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dunkin Donuts for breakfast....

makes for some really fun family portraits. LOL!

This family was truly a blast to work with, and within the silliness we got some great family portraits.

kids in frame for BLOG

4-pane family for BLOG

Monday, October 20, 2008

What do a 20-month-old boy and the Canadian Rockies have in common?

Little G has amazing eyes. Several years ago my husband and I took a roadtrip along the Icefields Parkway thru the Canadian Rockies. There is a glacier-fed lake in Banff called Peyto Lake, and it is seriously the prettiest blue lake I have ever seen. Normally you don't think of a frozen ice lake as gorgeous and blue, you think about the ocean in some exotic vacation spot in the Carribean. But Peyto Lake is unbelievable, and I encourage you to Google it because you will see some amazing pictures. Why did I go off on this Peyto Lake tangent? Oh yeah, because I have worked with this little guy several times, and his eyes make me think of Peyto Lake every time I see him.


And his mom could moonlight as a children's clothing buyer for portrait sessions because she always brings in the cutest stuff for him to wear. His dad is a retired firefighter, so these PJ's are not only hilarious but also totally appropriate.


This last image of the sneak peak is sort of a step outside the box for me. Toward the end of the session when little G was losing patience with me and my camera, we let him sit on a Thomas the Tank Engine riding toy. Obviously he did not sit still, but rather rode all over the studio. There are several snaps from that time that were out of focus (because he was driving too fast) or not properly exposed (because he drove away from the lights). I almost tossed this last image because of the split lighting on his face. But then I decided to play around with it a bit, and here is what I came up with. His serious expression, the edgy lighting, the grain - it's not my usual style but I think this is kinda cool!


Friday, October 17, 2008

Hanging out with big kids

After several weeks of working with the under-3 set, spending some time with a first grader and a kindergarten feels like I am hanging out with big kids. LOL! These two are so cute and were really fun to work with. And I must say that I am totally loving the mix of all the bright colors here!


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Christmas Card Templates

For those who participated in this week's Holiday Card Day, here are the templates to choose from. The original graphic showing these templates got buried under more recent posts, so I wanted to put them here again for your convenience.

overview numbered small

Another little Christmas Cutie



It's hard to believe this little one and I didn't speak the same language. You'd think with a last name like Gwozdz that I'd be able to speak Polish, huh? Thank goodness her mom and grandma were there to translate!

K, this is just a little sneak peek for you. I will email you soon with a link to the complete proof gallery.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Cuteness Overload: Santa Baby


I don't even know what to say because the picture says it all... Merry Christmas from the cutest little Santa anyone ever saw.

Just a shout out to Santa's mommy - please leave a comment here with info on where you got this Santa suit because everybody's gonna want to know!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

2008 Holiday Order Deadline

holiday order deadline BLOG copy

To guarantee receipt of your portraits before Christmas, the final day to place orders will be November 7th, 2008. This will ensure enough time for portrait retouching, any custom design work (such as storyboards, albums, or greeting cards), and delivery of boutique items such as jewelry and purses.

If your holiday session has already occurred and you are considering boutique items, I would encourage you to order them now. I have already noticed some of my vendors’ turnaround times increasing as the holidays approach.

Please note that I will be accepting orders after November 7th, but will not guarantee delivery by Christmas.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Seven Months Old

I just adore this little one. If we include her in-utero session, this is the 4th time I have had the opportunity to photograph her. You may recognize her from a couple of months ago because those baby blues are hard to forget!

Little Cutie


I am truly floored that I was able to work with two babies this week that did not cry on my mirror. Several photographers have asked me how I do this reflection shot, and the real trick is a glass mirror. Plexiglass mirrors are ok but the reflection is much crisper in a glass mirror. The downside to a glass mirror is that is it COLD! I have tried everything from space heaters to heating pads, but nothing really warms it up adequately. Most babies cry as soon as their bellies touch the glass (hey, I'd probably cry too), but not this little one or the little one in the previous post above. And I am sure you can guess another side effect of putting a naked baby on cold glass.... tinkle time!


Tuesday, October 7, 2008

There's a first time for everything....

and I can honestly say that this is the first time I have had hair envy over a 6-month-old.




What a gorgeous baby, huh? This was a Baby Parts session, and there are so many cute shots of her that I am not sure how we will choose just 9 images for the collage.

At the end of the session her Dad showed me that he had her newborn footprint tattooed on his arm. I thought that was just such a cool idea so I had to take a shot. Look how much her feet have grown in the past 6 months!


Monday, October 6, 2008

Holiday Gift Idea

holiday charms BLOG

Looking for a unique and special holiday gift? Check out these cute little photo charms. Your image is sealed onto a 1cm square black lip mother of pearl tile, finished with sterling silver, and is being offered for a special introductory price of $80. Chain not included. If you have had a session earlier in 2008, you can still order a charm using those photos. Lead time on these charms is 4-6 weeks, so call today if you would like to have one for the holidays!

And why yes, that is indeed me modeling one of the charms. For those of you who haven’t heard, I am doing a photographic challenge this year called “365.” It involves a self-portrait a day for an entire year, and this image here is my self-portrait for today. The 365 has been a lot of fun and somewhat of a creative kick-in-the-pants. I’ve met a lot of other really cool photographers around the world who are also participating in the challenge. If you’d like to see my entire project starting January 1st, click here.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Couch on the Lawn

I see life as a series of photo opportunities. So Saturday morning when I looked out my front window and saw a COUCH on my neighbors' lawn, I couldn't just go back to folding laundry, now could I?

Couch on the Lawn

The story is that they were donating this couch to the Salvation Army but it was temporarily on the lawn while they were loading up the truck. Anyway, I think it made a nice backdrop for an impromptu family portrait.

This couch is now gone so if you are seeing this blog post and thinking to yourself "I would like to have some outdoor family portraits on a couch", I will be happy to shoot them for you but you will need to provide the couch. LOL!

Sneak Peek

I am always honored when people travel from distant suburbs to come see me. Photographer friends of mine not from the Chicago area have a tough time understanding how someone can live 15 miles from me, but it can take a hour to get here. It's Chicago traffic, and it stinks. Therefore, I just want to say thanks to M for bringing her two little cuties over last Thursday. I had a lot of fun and we got some great shots!


010_011 BLOG


Saturday, October 4, 2008

Do the right thing....

It's almost time. Are you ready?