Showing posts with label for photographers. Show all posts

Fabulous Hannah Elise / iowa city portrait photographer

Yes, this is all about the FABULOUS Hannah Elise Photography. This girl rocks the photography world, capturing an emotional connection especially in her family portrait work that is hard to come by. She also is an amazing young woman that motivates and encourages those around her and is constantly pointing others to Christ! And of course, if you know anything about this girl...she is the ultimate thrifter, I mean the stuff she finds amazes me!  These are just a few things that make her FABULOUS and a joy to be around!

When I was approached by Hannah this Spring to shoot her images for her blog re-brand...I cried inside! Cried from joy of having the perfect client and cried from fear of shooting another photographer. All fears were pushed aside when I saw our amazing location, her beautiful Lularoe dress and when our laughter began! HANNAH...thanks for the opportunity to join you on your branding journey and helping make my camera sing!

Since Hannah's new blog went live this week, I thought you all should see more of her lovely self as well as hear a few tips about gaining momentum on Instagram. I will stop talking now and let Hannah take over!

Hey there! My name is Hannah Elise, and I am a 22 year old photographer living in eastern Iowa. I adore wearing colorful outfits, thrifting is my love language, and photographing families is my passion!!

3 Tips for Gaining Momentum on Instagram : 

Instagram is one of my favorite social media tools! There are so many awesome feeds out there to follow and it can become a little addicting, amiright?! :) Caitlyn asked me to share some tips for Instagram, and I feel honored that she asked! I definitely don't feel like a social media expert, but I am happy to share some things I have learned over the last few years. 

1) Create points to connect on. If you are using Instagram with your business, don't feel like you have to keep all your posts strictly 'work-related.' Share that you just stopped at Chick Fil A for a shake, the awesome deal you found on leather sandals, something God is teaching you currently, etc. People want to know that you are REAL, and that they're not the only ones who freak out over new Rifle Paper Co. products, love BBC movies, or can't wait for the cold winter days to be over either. This will bridge the gap between a stiff, formal business and one that resonates with your audience!

2) Script a story with your posts. Instagram is really the new form of blogging in a lot of ways, if you think about it! For our fast-paced culture, people don't read blogs as much as they used to, and having one photo with a caption fills that void instead. So start thinking of your feed as a 'mini blog', and present your photos like a 'mini blog post'. Instead of sharing an image and just saying "Kelly // 2015 senior #hannahelisephotography", you could say something like : "Had so much fun photographing this beautiful senior #hannahelisephotography!! Loved Kelly's outfits and the urban backdrops where we got to shoot! Cannot WAIT to share more previews!" We all love stories, and are going to pay more attention to a beautiful image when it has a compelling caption.

3) Be consistent. If you are sharing phone photos (and editing them in an app, like VSCO) try to stick with the same preset so that your images will look uniform. I try to curate a mix of more personal / phone pictures, along with "real camera" images of my photography work. You don't want to have a stream of 20 personal photos, and then suddenly post one "real camera" one out of the blue, or 

vice-versa. If you think your feed isn't very consistent right now, don't feel like you need to go delete everything you've previously posted. :) Just start from this day forward to be intentional and think about what you're posting, or consider starting a separate instagram account just for your business! People go to Target because there is a consistent feel every time they walk through the doors; same for Walmart, Nordstrom, etc. Strive to create consistency with your feed, and people will become familiar with what to expect and love your posts for that!!

 (Sorry, but these shoes are too great not to photograph!)
Thank you Hannah for sharing your great tips! If you guys haven't made the trek yet, head on to her new blog site! Everything about it is lovely!

// C A I T L Y N    B //

P.S. We love hearing from our readers...give Hannah some love by commenting below, asking questions, or just saying HI! Also, feel free to contact us if you would like new pictures for your awesome brand!

Not a Chef but a Servant / eastern iowa photography

The biggest lessons that I have been learning this past year is about branding + customer service + people. It doesn't matter how pretty, chic or epic your logo & website are. I mean YES, it is nice to have a good web presence but when it comes down to it, the pretty logo factor doesn't give people an experience. Giving a client an amazing "experience" with your business sounds simple enough but it can also be a struggle when you let life get in the way.

Now, one of my recurring convictions this past year has been on serving. God has given me lots of practice doing funny example is with my Husband. I really do NOT like to cook and baking is even worse. So, before I got married one of my stipulations (yes, I laid the law haha) was that I wouldn't have to cook. Well, I wasn't asked to cook or forced but honestly, Peter enjoys food. So learning how to cook has been an adventure of learning how to serve (No, this is not a Proverbs 31 lesson). This is a somewhat "cheesy" example but honestly, it is really hard and I struggle with it sometimes but I know this makes Peter feel loved. So I remember, I am not becoming a chef but a servant.

Examples like this are a small fraction of the opportunity we have around us. My thoughts are, if I can't serve in my own home or with my family...why would I have a good attitude overseas, with those throughout the community or in my own business. This thought process keeps coming back to me and is driving me crazy. So, the past 6 months, I have been working like a madwoman to physically give more to my clients and those learning about photography or business.

You see I am NOT in control of who likes me or how many people book me...but I am in control of how I make people feel around me. I want to show everyone value, beauty & joy because God has given me value, given me beauty from ashes and a hope and joy through His Son. So it is pretty simple, make it about Him and you will be able to make it about them. When you look at from this is a joy to give, a joy to serve even the most irritating people around you and a joy to run a business. My hope this year, is that my future clients see a difference in all aspects of their experience and leave feeling valued.

This leads to paying attention to details of which I am terrible at. I don't know if it's because I am an airhead or don't like to take the time...either way, in my business it reflected poorly. When a client would book, I just filed their name and took a check. Nothing wrong with that BUT there are some simple ways you can add fun, value & thankfulness. Below are my brand new welcome packets...every client that books will now be getting these instead of a just a lovely invoice.

I really like anything gold or sparkly. These reminded me of Willy Wonka and the golden tickets.

I found these on Instagram and about died. Sea Salt & Caramel are my gig.

Overnight Prints are great to work with and are super cheap to make graphics and prints through.
Grapefruit scents are always delicious & having sensitive skin, these things have been fantastic.

// C A I T L Y N   B //

5 Tricks for Finding Great Photography Locations - Trachta Family Session

Todays featured family session was fantastic.  Session was smooth as butter...outfits were PERFECT...and the family was beautiful.  Love working with them each year and seeing the girls change and grow!

On a photography note, I love shooting at this location for family pictures and someone recently asked me how I find locations and great fields.  Sometimes I think it's sheer luck (ok, i don't really believe in luck but you know what I mean) and other times it's from location mapping.

Here are a 5 simple tricks I have learned this past year:

> Put the mental list on paper
It's so easy to have a mental list of locations and then when you book a session you draw a blank.  It happens to me all the time!  I am starting to make actual lists.  Right now mine are typed out, but get a sheet of paper and categorize.  Put the location name - address - type of scenery - and best time of day to shoot.  Today's featured session was at Lowe Park in Marion, love the area but I know for my style, I can only shoot there at certain times throughout the day and year.

> Turn into a compass
Some people can look out the window and tell you they are facing North...and others like myself can look out the window and be dumbfounded, not having a clue which direction I am looking.  When you are scouting locations...write which direction you will be shooting.  That way you know where the sun is and what time your session will look the best.

> Google maps
If you have never used are missing out.  If I don't have time to scope out a location in person, I hit up the online virtual Google maps real view and look at the surroundings.  It works like a charm and lets you know what you walking into.  This doesn't work as well for fields and nature...but for urban locations and neighborhoods its a life saver.

> Open shade or backlighting
While I like backlighting, if I can shoot in shade/open shade...I am in heaven.  Catchlights are my if I can secure perfect eye lighting, I know nothing else matters.  Scope out places that have natural reflectors and things that will make your location more valuable.  If you are shooting backlit photos...bring a reflector and make those eyes pop

> Simple backgrounds
Look for simplicity and smooth color transitions.  I like shooting in fields because it is a neutral backdrop that I know will separate my client from the surroundings.  If I am not shooting in a neutral...then I look for bright backdrops that are simple.  You want to always pick something that draws your eye to the client and not what is around them.   Disclaimer: this is not always the case when you do themed of course want to see all the surrounding details.

Hopefully, these colorful photos brighten this cold, dreary October day!  Crossing my fingers this rain doesn't turn into snow too soon...the joys of Iowa weather!

::: Caitlyn :::
Just a Girl, Her Camera & An Eternal Perspective