Personal | 2014 Here We Go! [Norton, NB Photographer]

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Well it’s a New Year, and of course everyone has been focusing on Goals, Resolutions, Fresh Starts and All Of The Things that they want to do this year…and I’m no different. In fact my mind starting thinking about January and my 2014 goals for this little business of mine way back in November, but until now I haven’t really had the chance to get it on paper (or blog, so to speak). Now that things are finally quieting down a little (still a few more sessions to share and a few orders to finish up), I’m really trying to narrow down what I want to do differently this year, and how I want to move forward. So, in no particular order, here are a few wish list/goals for my photography business in 2014:

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Simplify. In a couple of different areas, but in particular in my pricing structure. Gone will be the millions of options and combinations, instead I will offer 3 collections, 3 special packages for maternity/newborns/babies, plus a few A la Carte items…that’s it. Though it seems limiting, I think that my clients will actually appreciate fewer choices, and it will be easier for me to get the orders fulfilled and out the door quicker. Same with my wedding packages for 2015, fewer packages and choices. I will only offer products that I love and would want to have in my own home, and I’m hoping to simplify my ordering process as well. I’ll also be doing other little things to make my editing and blogging simpler (no more watermarks in 2014!) and alleviate my email issues (more canned responses!)…I’m hoping that all of these little things will add up over time.

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-Hold 2 mini sessions days. Last year I had every intention of having 2 mini session days, one in the summer and one in the fall, but because I didn’t have them planned out before things got busy, they never happened…this year is going to be different. I want to dramatically reduce the amount of family and child sessions that I take on but still want to offer something to those families who have been so supportive of me over the past 3 years. These mini session days should hopefully do that. The summer one (for mid-July) will be for children only, and the fall one (October) will be for families. I may also do a few indoor mini sessions in the winter, but right now I’m only committing to 2.

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-Renovate my ‘studio’. I’ve been so fortunate to keep busy over the winter by having clients come to my home and do studio sessions (newborns and children mainly). I’ve purchased several backdrops and props, but I feel like my space isn’t what I want it to be. Dan and I have talked about me ‘moving out’ of the house into a commercial space but realistically we can’t consider that until the kids are in school, so I have another 3 years working from my ‘home studio’. It’s fairly well set-up, with easy access from the front door and it’s near the washroom, but there are a few things that need to change. Paint, new furniture, actual samples on my walls, a parking space near the front door, a better work station and setting up a semi permanent shooting area with studio lights will be my main goals. This is going to be an investment but worth it in the end and I’m so excited. You can see some of my inspirational studio Pins on this board.

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-Update my online presence. I’ve been TERRIBLY neglectful with my website and blog the past couple of years, which is insane considering that almost all of my business comes from the Internet.  I haven’t updated my website since…2011. Yep, not a single image from the past 2 years is up (except here on the blog). Nutso. So everything is getting a facelift very soon!

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Narrow my niche. This is going to be one of the toughest ones to do, but one that I feel is necessary if I want to continue on happily with my work. I need to feel creative and there are certain types of sessions that give me the chills…and some that don’t. So starting this year I’m going to be more selective about what I take on. Learning to say ‘no’ has been really hard for me because I want to give people what they want, but it’s taken some of the joy away from me and my work instead.  I may lose some clients along the way but hopefully by shooting what I love I’ll put out some of my best work and will attract the type of work that I want to do.

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Learn. I still have SO MUCH to learn about photography and running a photography business, and I want to be proactive about gaining the tools and skills that I need to get to the next level. Off camera flash, posing women, studio lighting, creative composition, these are all things that I want to improve on, and am really hoping to prioritize during my down time.

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-Get help. Mainly in the form of a wedding assistant (or 2nd shooter, still undecided). After doing 13 weddings last year by myself and 12 the year before, I’ve learned that I just can’t do it alone anymore. I have way too much gear, too many things to set up, and all of those nit picky things are taking me away from my main job of the day-capturing memories for the bride and groom. So basically I want to find someone who will come with me, lug around my stuff, get my lenses for a quick swap, help set up my lights, be a test subject for said lights, and any other random things I can think of (sounds glamorous doesn’t it?) I’m also considering a newborn assistant, depending on the amount of business I get with newborns this year (I hope lots!!)

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-Shoot for myself/Don’t burn out. This is tough because of everything I’m not doing above. I take on too much, my niche isn’t narrow enough, I’m inefficient and so I burn out and barely pick up the camera for myself or my children anymore. Not a good thing (thank god for the iPhone and Instagram is all I’ll say!) I want to take more candid photos at home, and do some ‘just for fun’ sessions too. I love looking back on my old albums and photo books and I know that my young children do too, so it’s important…family memories are IMPORTANT, whether you are doing them yourself or having someone like myself doing them for you. I need to remember that.

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Well that’s all I can think of for now, though I’m sure there’s much more floating around in my head. For now I just want to say THANK YOU to everyone who has supported me in 2013 and even before that; I’m looking forward to refining Genevieve Flynn Photography in 2014 and continuing on this crazy path I’m on!

(And because I don’t like to include posts without photos, these are a few shots I took around our yard on Christmas day…the ice storm was certainly an inconvenient thing for thousands of people-including us for about 30 hours-but it sure made for a BEAUTIFUL winter wonderland to photograph!)

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Jason Schwarz - Here’s hoping you all the best in 2014!

Linda Bettle - your winter scene photos are just gorgeous!

Amanda Burke - Beautiful pictures 🙂 I be inserted in help you in the New year!

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Merry Christmas/Joyeuses fêtes!

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Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and all the best in 2014. I hope there is much love, relaxation, laughter, family and food in your homes today. Eat, drink and merry (or lazy if you prefer!)

Also, thank you all for the incredible support this past year! Let’s do it again next year, eh?

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(and Dan, and Victor, and Violet)

 

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2 Years | Violet [Norton, NB Babies & Child Photographer]

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October is always a crazy month, isn’t it? So much going on; holidays, school events, trying to spend as much time as possible outdoors in the beautiful leaves while at the same time feeling the need to get your house ready for winter…it can be a little much. Especially when you throw in a dozen portrait sessions to edit and get ready for clients! So needless to say, I’m a bit behind on getting my October sessions blogged, but I’m hoping to get them all up in the next couple of weeks…and to kick off a crazy month, here are some photos of my crazy daughter 🙂

I feel a bit bad for calling her ‘crazy’ all the time, but if you met this little (and I mean little, she’s tall but really skinny) firecracker, you would agree with this descriptor of Violet…she’s just crazy! In the best possible way though. She’s busy, odd, messy, happy, rough and tumble, cuddly, funny-oh so funny-and just plain wild. Now at 2 she’s still not saying much but she gets her point across loud and clear, enjoys colouring, dolls and wrestling with her brother, she hops and jumps any chance she gets, eats her veggies before anything else, finally has all her baby teeth, is obsessed with my iPhone, sleeps like a dream in her new big girl bed, is curious and into absolutely EVERYTHING, and has a very infectious smile. When we did these photos I expected the worse but got the best possible surprise: cooperation! We went out into our back fields on a gorgeous warm evening and gave her a few little props to play with, but for the most part she just acted like a goof with her dad. Perfect for her.

I knew that I wanted her to have a scrap fabric tutu for her birthday a few weeks before (suits her a bit better than the super girlie tulle kind), so I had iy custom made by Funky Baby Handcrafted Creations, and I love how it turned out!

Enjoy a few favourites of my little wild child!

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And just to show how things don’t really change, here is a photo of her at her 9-month session, and at her 2 year session…this girl likes to climb!

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[SEE VIOLET’S NEWBORN SESSION HERE]

[SEE VIOLET’S 3-MONTH SESSION HERE]

[SEE VIOLET’S 6-MONTH SESSION HERE]

[SEE VIOLET’S 9-MONTH SESSION HERE]

[SEE VIOLET’S 12-MONTH SESSION HERE]

[SEE VIOLET’S 18-MONTH SESSION HERE]

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Sarah Flynn - wow, the older she gets the more she resembles her big crazy cousin Rowan, some of those expressions make the resemblance uncanny. Just proves the ‘crazy’ is on the Flynn side lol 😉

Micheline Gosselin - You have a beautiful daughter and a great photographic eye!

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Personal | Thanksgiving Weekend [Turtle Creek, NB Photographer]

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I’ve had so many personal blog posts that I intended to post over the summer and fall; how my garden was doing (it did so-so but not bad for my first year’s attempt), how having chickens went (it was great but then they ran away to live with my neighbour for the winter), pictures of the kids, of this, of that, but well, between sharing sessions and keeping on top of my workload, it just didn’t happen (with the exception of our Summer Vacation Photos). However, next year I’m determined to share at least one personal, non-session blog post per month, so wish me luck on that!

Anyway, I figured it wasn’t quite too late to share our Thanksgiving weekend photos. We went to my parents’ camp in Turtle Creek, outside of Moncton on the way to Fundy, and spent another glorious weekend enjoying the perfect Fall weather and scenery. I took my sister’s family photos (will share soon!), ate turkey and pumpkin pie that my dad made from scratch (homemade pumpkin puree and all), sat by the fire as it got colder and colder, and took several walks in the woods. The kids played by the river with the dogs, and we simply relaxed away from it all. I purposely didn’t book any shoots for that weekend and it was a MUCH needed break after a 2-week stretch of near daily sessions. All in all a pretty nice weekend!

[This post could also be called “The weekend I fell in love with my 100mm“. All of these images were shot with my Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro lens; my fellow photographer friend (photographriend?) Kandise Brown introduced me to the awesomeness of using this lens for every day use (meaning not just macro stuff). After seeing a session she did using it here, I decided to give it a shot and fell instantly IN LOVE with the results. I’ve done quite a few sessions using it exclusively since, and I just love its flexibility (something I didn’t realize at the time). Thanks Kandise!]

(Oh, and yes, Violet did climb the ladder my dad left out to get onto the roof of the camp; that’s the kind of kid I’m dealing with here people.)

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Kandise - Haha, YES! So delicious!

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Little Ones | Victor [Norton, NB Babies & Children Photographer]

After spending about 15 mins photographing my son Victor I’ve discovered one thing: photographing 3-year olds is hard! Especially ones who are quite used to their mama’s camera and would rather play around the firepit and walk along the logs holding your hand. And yes, he’s wearing a pyjama top 😉

At 3 Victor has gone through some pretty big changes (I notice that this happens around his year marks, he seems to take a few big developmental leaps around his birthday). The biggest one is being potty trained (mamas, you know how big a deal this is!), as well as progress in his language (he’s still quite a bit behind but he communicates in little sentences now and for the most part he gets his point across). He’s also a lot less temperamental and tantrum-y, which is huge for me since he had a pretty bad and long spell of ‘terrible twos’. He’s a breeze to take out most of the time and is also easy to put to bed. The biggest challenge with him is mealtimes/food in general, but I think that’s quite common with a lot of kids. He loves TV and the computer but isn’t as obsessed as he was before (and like his sister is now), and he plays really well by himself, talking to himself and doing all those cute little kid things that they do with their imagination. He has a really good memory and is extremely observant (he’ll mention something and it will take Dan and I several days to figure out what he means because it’s such a small little detail), and he can ‘read’ several books by himself because he has them memorized. He knows his ABCs and 123s in English and French and loves to learn that kind of thing. He’s also getting really into playing outside in his sandbox or the yard (he wanted me to roll in the grass with him the other day), and I’m looking forward to trying out different activities with him over the summer (he was never really old enough to ‘get’ activities before). He’s quiet in public and still a bit shy but can be super hyper and rough and tumble, especially with his sister. He’s turning into a real little boy and it’s been so fun to watch (he surprises me almost everyday with something new).

This boy, he’s got my heart pretty locked up; he’s my first and my beau garçon.

(When I saw him doing this I knew the session was over, ha!)

Thanks for letting me share some personal photos of what takes up the rest of my time when I’m not working 😉

Back soon!

Lori Thornton - His eyes are so striking!

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