{What I Learned…} Everything Ain’t For Everybody

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity photograph my niece’s newborn photos. Because I was away on vacation and my sister-in-law was in  the process of moving, we couldn’t schedule the session until a month after (a big no-no for newborn photography, which usually takes place within the first few days after the baby is born), but I was determined to make it work.  Let me start by saying major kudos to all the newborn photographers out there!  Capturing those angelic styled baby poses (like these from renowned baby photographer) is TOUGH work! It takes a lot of skill, preparation, but more importantly, it takes patience. Between feedings, diaper and setup changes, the whole process can take several hours. As much as we waited for Anandra to fall asleep, it just wasn’t happening.  But we did manage to capture a few adorable shots of her looking perfectly cozy and comfy in all the props we placed her in and used on her that day – I will share those here as soon as I’m done editing.  But I also learned a valuable lesson that day:  that as much as I enjoy looking at beautifully styled photos, those are simply not for me.   There’s plenty of talented photographers who can do a far better job than I can in that area! I’d much rather capture what I enjoy best: L.O.V.E. – no props or complicated setups needed!

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August 15, 2011 - 12:58 am

Life with Kaishon - Amen!
I had the nicest lady contact me this week. She said she LOVED my pictures : ) Loved them and she wanted me to shoot her family. But then : ) she sent me lots of links to photographers she liked. And they were all prop happy. I used to do props, because I thought it was cool and everyone and their brother did it, but I don’t like that look too much. I don’t like staging too much. I like real : ) Maybe 10% staged and 90% candid would be my style. I told the very, very nice lady I didn’t think I was what she was looking for and gave her 3 names of people that would love to do a stylized shoot with her. I hope she is happy in the end.
I love that you discovered this about yourself Maddy and most of all, I LOVE these pictures.
Sensational to the max.
Just like you.

August 15, 2011 - 7:32 am

Sabine - They are adorable, these photos! I guess it’s part of the process – finding out what kind of photographer you are, how and in which categories you prefer to work. I like to challenge myself, but when it’s too far from my comfort zone I get very nervous that the results will be dreadful. Something that really interests me – and I find much more difficult than I thought – is interior design photography.
Can’t wait to see your pictures, Maddy!

August 15, 2011 - 7:33 am

dana - Love this!!! I actually, (sorry but) am very tired of all those posed, props pictures! I love the “moment” photos! mix between planned and candid. and that is what I want to do. what I find myself most comfortable doing!
I love this photo Maddy!

August 15, 2011 - 7:49 am

Sarah - Dodeline Design - That would be a HUGE task – love this & can’t wait to see more!

August 15, 2011 - 7:52 am

Amy - What a sweet photo! And I’m with you … I love pictures that capture life, most of all!

August 15, 2011 - 8:28 am

Terri - So simple and oh so beautiful! Love it Maddy!

August 15, 2011 - 8:33 am

The Guilty Hyena - I feel both types of photography are equally wonderful, look forward to seeing the rest of the photo’s.

August 15, 2011 - 8:33 am

Keeley - I like your style and I think you do a fantastic job without using props. When I look at your photo shoots (and others) I realize that I don’t document enough of the important stuff in my life. I have tons of photos of my cooking and baking, but almost NONE of my family. The next time I have a milestone, I’m hiring a professional photographer… will you come to Delaware? :)

August 15, 2011 - 9:08 am

Cafe Fashionista - Kids are known for their playfulness. Sometimes posed pictures, full of props, seem so unnatural when it involves children – it’s nice to see that you are staying true to their nature and “real” behavior. Love this shot! :)

August 15, 2011 - 9:45 am

Mindy - i never sweat as much as I do when I photograph a baby. it is hard work!!! This shots is adorable and evokes emotion…great shot!

August 15, 2011 - 9:58 am

Buckeroomama - I used to want stylized pics of my kids –especially when I first had Josh. We did one session and while I thought it was nice and all, it just didn’t feel like me, like us.

I love the photos you take, Maddy. Don’t ever be who you’re not comfortable being. :)

August 15, 2011 - 10:26 am

Lee Oliveira - I love this photo sooo much. I love the connection between mother/daughter..
There is so much life into this picture..
Lee x

August 15, 2011 - 10:42 am

Maddy {Mad Hearts Photography} - I agree! Challenging yourself and stepping out of your comfort zone is important with any profession, especially photography. But it’s also just as important to figure out your own style because you don’t want to necessarily be the jack of all trades and master of none. It’s like any fashion trend, you can embrace it, make it your own or you can pass on it altogether. Newborn photography is something I’m still deeply interested in, but I also want to approach it in a way that’s true to my artistic style.

August 15, 2011 - 11:44 am

Camila Faria - I must be soooo hard Maddy. But I adore this photo. I’m so ready for my niece’s birth (in just a few more days)! So excited!

August 15, 2011 - 12:04 pm

Jacquie V - You are an excellent photographer and you have to do what makes you as a photographer happy. I still have to contact you by the way to see when we could meet up, I can’t wait for our first shooting :)

August 15, 2011 - 12:34 pm

DITA - You have a style all your own that says oodles and oodles more with one photo than a book of Anne Geddes images.
Congratulations on the birth of yet ANOTHER beautiful niece.

I can’t wait to see the shots…..I miss you, my friend!

Love you tons,

August 15, 2011 - 12:45 pm

Christina Lee - I am in love with that photo, M!! And good for you for understanding your niche! And you are wonderful at it, my dear!

August 15, 2011 - 1:39 pm

katrina - i prefer your baby photo, maddy. the photos in the link you provided are beautiful, no doubt. however, most of them looked a bit awkward. your photos are natural — how can they get any better than that?

August 15, 2011 - 2:04 pm

savvy gal - I agree with you that it is rather difficult.

August 15, 2011 - 2:25 pm

Rachel @ The Redhead Fashionista - This photo is great, Maddy! I’m sure all the photos came out fantastic!

August 15, 2011 - 3:08 pm

Haute World - Fantastic! I agree with your take on capturing emotion rather than something that is too styled. I feel the same way about wedding photography – the overly posed fake shots always bore me. Give me a good candid anytime!

August 16, 2011 - 2:16 am

Kristin - I’ve gone the props and non proms route…I prefer the more natural photos in the end!

August 16, 2011 - 8:55 am

Angelia Sims - Gorgeous photograph Maddy! I just love the emotion in this one. And I hear ya on newborns, I have never sweat so much in my life as when doing them. :-) It looks so sweet and easy, but it’s sooo not. Love newborns though, they are very special angels.

August 16, 2011 - 10:12 am

fhenny - the photo is amazing dear! love the candid style of photographs rather than too artificial props for baby shoot.
i have never done a baby shoot before, but would love to do sometime!

August 16, 2011 - 10:23 am

emily - I couldn’t imagine a newborn shoot being anything but difficult, totally cute and worth it, but like you said, patience is very necessary. Love this!

August 16, 2011 - 10:35 am

Sadee - I love this. The softness of the moment, the dreamy whites and grays, and the lovely contrast brought in by the dark hair and the sweet tattoo…just gorgeous!!!

August 16, 2011 - 2:23 pm

Keepie DaNiece - Well, hard work or no, I’d say you have BEAUTIFUL results. Precious.

August 16, 2011 - 2:29 pm

tinajo - This is very soft, tender and precious – love it. :-)

August 16, 2011 - 7:26 pm

Jennifer - And you so such an *amazing* job at capturing LOVE Maddy! Props and setups are not needed when you can capture the beauty of love! :) This photo is beautiful.

August 18, 2011 - 10:22 am

Sana, So Does Estella - Maddy I’ve missed you! Too cute. You did wonderful! I can only imagine the process behind it. I have a hard enough time working with flowers in stills. :)

August 20, 2011 - 6:28 pm

Nadette - The above picture is beautiful, and I’m like you, I like natural photos rather than posed/styled, and in all honesty, posed newborn pics kinda creep me out, lol.

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