Print Competitions! Howard County Photographer

21 07 2011

Last year I decided to ‘man-up’ and start entering my images in our State competitions.  Nerve racking doesn’t begin to explain how I feel prior to and during the competitions.  For the past couple of years, I’ve sat through many of them as a spectator and it’s amazing what you learn when you hear the Master judge’s critiques and suggestions.  I knew it was time to bite the bullet and go for it.  As much as I learned from being a spectator, I knew I would gain even more knowledge by entering my own images.

So last year, I entered my first image.  My goal was to be awarded a score of 80…..I won’t go into the whole scoring process now, but that was my goal.  I thought I would have to compete several times before reaching that goal, so you can imagine how thrilled I was  when the score was called and it was an 80!   No way! 😀 I went home that night with a blue ribbon!!

And later, in our Annual Competition, I entered this image and received the Kelly Pierce Memorial Award, for Best Portrait of a Child!  I was beyond excited!

Here’s my first entry, titled “Chicks Dig Me”.

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This image is so special to me. Joseph, my adorable subject, is the son of 2 of my favorite people in the universe. Thank you, Sue and Cliff!

Last month, I competed again, still sooooo nerve racking. There were over 90 images submitted!  I found myself feeling like I was in second grade, sitting on my hands with my fingers crossed, avoiding eye contact with the teacher, hoping she doesn’t call on me!! Who does that??
Here is “Golden Statue”. I was thrilled to receive another 80 with beautiful Nahal as my model!  Thank you, Nahal!
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I also entered “Little Big Man” last month and it scored an 80 as well!!  How cute is he?! Thank you, Danielle!
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Now, I’ll back up a few months, I entered more images in another State Print Competition.   I was so excited about the scores and I came home with more awards!  BUT, I’ve got to take a moment to say, that I apologize for not posting these sooner. I really want to celebrate my clients, but it’s difficult for me because I feel like I’m praising myself when I put these up and talk about awards.    While I do want my clients and potential clients to know that I work hard to deliver beautiful, emotional and fun images and I’m continually working to improve, it’s still uncomfortable for me to say “look what I did!”  So for the family members and subjects of these next several images, I’m sorry that I didn’t announce these sooner.

Here are the winning images from a few months ago:

This sweet baby, I’ve had the pleasure of watching her grow because she’s on my baby’s first year plan.  The baby to one of my wedding couples, this is “Peaceful on Grandma’s Blanket”. Thank you, KC and John.

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I love this family portrait.  Pete and Mary, two of my oldest (not in age but in # of years that I’ve known them!! 😉 ) friends and it was an amazingly fun time hanging out with them and their handsome boys!

Titled, “A Brilliant Family Perspective”. Thank you, Pete and Mary.

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Sweet, sweet Bella had so much fun at her one year old portrait session and I had a blast with her.  Thank you, Donna and Jeff.

“Ummmm, privacy please!”

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This beautiful little baby girl was the perfect, happy subject, simply titled, “Christmas Baby”  Thank you, Shawn and Brian!

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I will be the first to admit that it is extremely rewarding to be recognized for your work and to win awards.  But, it is even more rewarding to have wonderful clients that trust me to create beautiful and emotionally moving images for them to admire for generations.  I’m blessed to be able to document incredible milestones in a person’s life and I never take that for granted.  I always work to continually improve my craft.

Thank you! xo

For anybody who is interested in the Print Competitions and what the judges look for when they score:
(copied from the Professional Photographers of America website, http://www.ppa.com)

The use of these 12 elements connects the modern practice of photography and its photographers to the historical practice of photography begun nearly two centuries ago.

Twelve elements have been defined as necessary for the success of an art piece or image. Any image, art piece, or photograph will reveal some measure of all twelve elements, while a visually superior example will reveal obvious consideration of each one

The Twelve elements listed below are in accordance to their importance.

Impact is the sense one gets upon viewing an image for the first time. Compelling images evoke laughter, sadness, anger, pride, wonder or another intense emotion. There can be impact in any of these twelve elements.

Technical excellence is the print quality of the image itself as it is presented for viewing. Retouching, manipulation, sharpness, exposure, printing, mounting, and correct color are some items that speak to the qualities of the physical print.

Creativity is the original, fresh, and external expression of the imagination of the maker by using the medium to convey an idea, message or thought.

Style is defined in a number of ways as it applies to a creative image. It might be defined by a specific genre or simply be recognizable as the characteristics of how a specific artist applies light to a subject. It can impact an image in a positive manner when the subject matter and the style are appropriate for each other, or it can have a negative effect when they are at odds.

Composition is important to the design of an image, bringing all of the visual elements together in concert to express the purpose of the image. Proper composition holds the viewer in the image and prompts the viewer to look where the creator intends. Effective composition can be pleasing or disturbing, depending on the intent of the image maker.

Presentation affects an image by giving it a finished look. The mats and borders used, either physical or digital, should support and enhance the image, not distract from it.

Color Balance supplies harmony to an image. An image in which the tones work together, effectively supporting the image, can enhance its emotional appeal. Color balance is not always harmonious and can be used to evoke diverse feelings for effect.

Center of Interest is the point or points on the image where the maker wants the viewer to stop as they view the image. There can be primary and secondary centers of interest. Occasionally there will be no specific center of interest, when the entire scene collectively serves as the center of interest.

Lighting—the use and control of light—refers to how dimension, shape and roundness are defined in an image. Whether the light applied to an image is manmade or natural, proper use of it should enhance an image.

Subject Matter should always be appropriate to the story being told in an image.

Technique is the approach used to create the image. Printing, lighting, posing, capture, presentation media, and more are part of the technique applied to an image.

Story Telling refers to the image’s ability to evoke imagination. One beautiful thing about art is that each viewer might collect his own message or read her own story in an image.





“Welcome home daddy” and “Happy birthday, baby!” {Ellicott City Photographer}

27 03 2011

So…..I met Shawn last year.  She had called my studio asking if I did “cake smash” photos for babies birthday pictures.  After chatting and answering some questions, I invited her into the Studio to discuss further what she wanted and what I could offer.  I loved our visit, we hit it off right away.

Through our conversation that day at the Studio, I learned that her husband was in the Middle East serving our country.  He would be home in several months when their baby turns one!  AWESOME!!  How great that we could create a family portrait at the same time of Cheyenne’s one year portraits and cake smash photos!

Even though it was several months until daddy would be home, I was able to see Cheyenne and her mommy a few times.  I invited her to help me showcase some of my new tutu sets, Cheyenne was a great little model.

Hi daddy!!  Hurry home!
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Christmas baby…
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Fast forward now,  to last month when the long awaited trip from husband and daddy was finally realized.  Brian was now on U.S soil and with his family!!! 😀 He, his beautiful wife and baby and his parents all came to my studio for a great afternoon.  It was a true honor and joy to have all of them here.

Here are some of the portraits that we created that fun February day.

First of all, THANK YOU, BRIAN, for serving our country.  I’m so thankful for you and all of our servicemen and women.
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Are they a beautiful family or what??

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How sweet is this??

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This just melts my heart….

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Sometimes, I’m lost for words….

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Brian’s beautiful and proud parents…

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On to the birthday girl!  Time to party.

“I WILL EAT MY TOES IF YOU DON’T GIMME MY CAKE!!!!!!”
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WE’VE PUT TOGETHER A FUN SLIDESHOW OF CHEYENNE PERFORMING HER CAKE SMASH.  I HOPE YOU ENJOY IT.  PLEASE CLICK HERE TO VIEW.

I had such an amazing time photographing Cheyenne and her family!  I am honored to have had the pleasure to get to know this wonderful family.  Debbie, Bill, Leslie, Brian, Shawn and baby Cheyenne, big hugs to you all!

Shawn, I’m looking forward to our next fun day with your little sweetheart.  Let’s get your grandmother in here for that “4 generations of gorgeous girls” portrait!  😉

xo





Family portraits and a slideshow…

9 08 2010

with the Militello cuties! I LOVE kids! Probably because I’m just one big kid. Or perhaps because they are so stinkin’ cute. I am so blessed to be able to photograph people for a living!

Last week I posted a slideshow of these adorable children welcoming their baby sis into the world. Fast forward 10 months, and baby sis is growing up! How precious is she?
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Click here to view the slideshow of my fun morning with this beautiful family. Thanks again, Jen and Bill. It’s so fun hanging out with you and your cuties!

Love you tons!





Family portraits…

2 08 2010

for this beautiful (almost) one year old and her brothers!

You may remember last year I posted hospital pictures of big brothers meeting their baby sister for the first time. CLICK HERE to check them out.

Here is a new slideshow of the family meeting sweet Mary Elizabeth for the first time. CLICK HERE for the slideshow.

Check out gorgeous Jen and her beautiful children…
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And I just had to post this cute photo of her almost one year old. Mary Elizabeth has so many adorable expressions, and a beautiful smile, but this one is way too cute…..
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I will be posting more later, but I wanted to get a couple out there for you.

Thanks, Jen!  I had such a great time with you all.  Your boys are beyond adorable and so sweet to their baby sis!  And honestly, I could’ve stayed all day and continued photographing Mary Elizabeth.  She’s so stinkin’ cute and full of expressions!  I love you all!  We’ll get Bill next time, right?!

xoxo





Mother’s Day Gift Certificates

30 04 2010

Alright, kiddos, time to buy the perfect gift for your mom. Pam Long Photography gift certificates!  For a very limited time, we are offering an extra bonus!  When you purchase a gift certificate for $100,  your certificate will be valued at $125!  When you purchase a gift certificate for $150, you receive an extra $50 for a value of $200!!!  That’s a fantastic return on your investment.   🙂

Give mom the incredible gift of portraits.  She can use them to pay for a photo session (family, children, maternity, newborn, boudoir, in-studio, on location – get it? no limits!!)  If you’re planning on beach portraits this summer, she can use it towards awesome family portraits on the beach.  Planning on holiday cards again this year, yes, these  certificates can be used towards them!  Do you know someone that is expecting a baby, purchase one for her to use toward maternity and newborn portraits! These certificates can also be used for portrait prints, albums, frames, purses or jewelry.

“My sister was right, you are wonderful!  My family and I had a great time and shared lots of laugh together during our photo shoot and portrait selection with you.  As a picky person, I was very impressed with your attention to detail, professionalism, and personal attention  you gave us.  It’s obvious that you love what you do and your work shows it.  I have and will continue to recommend your services to my friends and family.”

This offer is good for all people….not just moms or for moms!  If you know that you’ll be having Pam Long Photography photograph a session for you in the future, yes, you may purchase a value-added gift certificate as well.  But….you need to do it by Wednesday, May 5th!

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We have 14 gift certificates in stock. These will be sold on a first call, first serve basis. If you call our office and we are not available to personally answer your call, please leave a detailed message with the # of certificates you would like and the dollar amount that you are spending on each (and of course, your name and contact info….but you already know that, right?). All calls will be taken in the order in which they are received. Many of you “shop” at night, we understand, you are welcome to email us at pam@pamlongphotography.com with your information (do not email your credit card info) and we will get back with you.

We look forward to serving you. Have a fantastic weekend! 🙂





Baby Bella – Ellicott City Baby Photographer

22 02 2010

I had soooooo much fun with this adorable one year old! When she and her mommy came to my studio, she was already beaming with a smile; I couldn’t wait to get started.

This was one of the most fun one year old photo sessions I’ve ever had! Bella was a fantastic model. She had personality, a natural beaming smile and stamina…it really seemed like she could’ve gone on for hours and SHE’S ONLY ONE!!!

Here are just a few images from our fun time together.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BEAUTIFUL BELLA!
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Donna, thanks so much for the trust you have placed in me! I had a fantastic time with you both! I’m looking forward to showing you the rest of your photographs next week!

xo