These adorable little munchkins came into the studio for their portrait session this month. Shh… don’t tell their grandparents, because it’s a holiday surprise! It was really cute to see the kids interact, and to hear their ideas for how the portrait session should go.
If you are looking for the perfect gift to give a loved one, consider a portrait session! While printed photographs are great to give (and receive!), it’s just as common for my clients to gift a certificate for a portrait session — especially if the recipient is supposed to be in the family photograph! Contact the studio today or call 734-424-0472 to learn more about scheduling a session or purchasing a gift certificate for your loved ones.
The Dexter Community Orchestra recently asked me to create an updated orchestral portrait for them. I did one some years back during a concert (or maybe it was before). This time, we didn’t have much time at all to do the portrait of the orchestra. I created these photos in about five minutes, during their intermission. When we did this photo, I was many rows back into the auditorium with my camera. Many thanks to those onstage who told the orchestra members what to do for me so I didn’t have to be rude and yell!
I think these photos turned out very nicely, and you’d never know we had such limited time to capture the photos.
I took this last image of the Dexter Community Orchestra while I waited for the intermission. I was able to hear this very talented soloist perform. Don’t you love this wide angle view of the auditorium with the orchestra on stage? So many visually interesting lines!
Here’s a bit of information about the Dexter Community Orchestra:
The Dexter Community Orchestra is a musical group located in Dexter, Michigan. The DCO is dedicated to cultural enrichment through live symphonic music. The DCO seeks to provide the many benefits that can be achieved only through live musical performance. We are proud to offer a place for volunteer musicians to play and an opportunity for individuals and families to experience the magic of live classical music. We are looking for musicians and volunteers to help make our season a resounding success.
For more information about the Dexter Community Orchestra, visit their website. The concerts that I have attended are always very well done! And I’ve even spotted some very well behaved younger children in the audience. Kudos to those parents — it’s tough to decide when your kids are old enough to start experiencing things like this. 🙂 🙂
Claudia and her mom came to the studio in October for her senior portraits. We did the indoor formal portrait for the yearbook, and then headed out to Mill Creek Park in Dexter for some more artistic senior portraits in nature. I am really excited for Claudia and her family to see these photos, it was hard for me to pick my favorites to share for this sneak peek!
Ian came to the studio last week for his senior portrait session. We did some portraits inside the studio, including the obligatory high school yearbook photos. In case you’re not up to speed with senior yearbook requirements, it really varies across the board. Some high schools will take anything, or allow any background as long as no hands or props are showing. Other high schools, including Saline High School, require the senior portrait for the yearbook have a professional backdrop. So, for that reason, we started in the studio.
After the studio portion of Ian’s session was finished, we headed outside (here at the studio) for some really cool fall portraits. I love how easy it is to create portraits both indoors and out here. Make sure to scroll down so you an enjoy some of Ian’s senior portraits that include the natural wooded area with the fall leaves strewn all over the ground!
Well, that wraps up this sneak peek. I know Ian’s family is really excited to see all the portraits we created when they come back to the studio for their ordering appointment. It’s easy to compare favorites when you can view images on a studio projection system 🙂 — and I’m here to help along the way with any tough decisions.
If you are needing to schedule a portrait session this fall, please contact the studio or call 734-424-0472. The leaves are falling, but not as quickly as I would typically expect. Or, if you want to keep things simple and plan a studio portrait session, I’m always happy to help you with that too!
It seems like forever and a day since I last shared photos of the Monarch caterpillars. So thank you for your patience! I am really excited to share these macro photos of the Monarch butterfly emerging from its chrysalis. That week of my life was crazy — we spent hours watching for signs that the butterflies would be emerging soon (also called “eclosing”). I learned that the top part of the chrysalis gets very bumpy and “slinky like” — rather than being smooth. Yes, indeed it does. But that’s still not really an accurate measure of how long you have, because the whole process takes time.
I was blessed to be able to witness four of the Monarch butterflies as they eclosed. We “missed” another one, and the last one was a sneaky little guy. Fortunately I’d turned on the video camera before putting my attention elsewhere, so it was caught on film. All together, I photographed three different butterflies eclosing. The others I watched. And let me tell you, this miracle didn’t get old or become more mundane. It’s amazing how the butterfly climbs out, and interesting how small its wings are, and how swollen its abdomen is. The wings took a lot longer to dry and “grow” to full size than I expected. And the butterflies didn’t fly away immediately. We put them outside within hours, but they stayed nearby for hours or even days longer.
My boys are set on doing this again next year. I think the self-started milkweed plants in my garden bed may have to stay. We’ll see what spring brings, of course.
Make sure you don’t miss the end of this post, where you can watch a time lapse video of one of the Monarch butterflies emerging from its chrysalis!
Now, you may recall me saying that I borrowed a video camera from my dad in order to film one of the butterflies eclosing. That’s true. I managed to film two butterflies eclosing from their chrysalises. Here’s the video I created. Portions of the film are time lapsed so that you can experience the entire transformation:
I love going on location for senior portrait sessions! And, I love when my clients have a specific location in mind! T and his mom started his session at my studio (so we could get the yearbook photo), but the bulk of his amazing senior portraits were created on location in Dexter. Mill Creek Park is just one of those versatile places, I love how it never looks the same twice.
If you need to plan your senior portrait session, please contact the studio today so that we can fit you in before your yearbook deadline! We typically get booked up with last minute appointments as high school senior yearbook deadlines approach. So, a little advance planning will ensure you get your senior portrait planned — at a time that is convenient for your schedule!
If you’re thinking about skipping the whole senior portrait thing. Please reconsider. My guess is that you just want something simple and painless — well, look no further! We can make your senior portrait session short, relaxing, and maybe even fun! With studio senior portraits, there is nothing to distract you from the person. Everything, all your attention, is drawn to the high school senior — you really get a sense for their personality. You get to look into their eyes and see their smile. Years down the road, you will look at that senior portrait and fondly remember that time in your life.
A few years ago, my mother-in-law gave me a picture book illustrated by one of my favorites, Tomie DePaola. The author is Nancy Willard, and the book is called “Simple Pictures are Best” (#afflink). The brief synopsis? A man and his wife hire a photographer, but add so many props and “things” into their portrait that they end up with ….well, let’s just say the photo doesn’t turn out as planned. Anyways, I digress. Let’s take a peek at these simple senior portraits that we did in my studio that meet most high school yearbook requirements in the Ann Arbor area.
There’s something to be said for the classic portrait. Whether it’s the more traditional suit and tie, or a somewhat relaxed studio portrait — these senior photos really will never go out of style. As I said before – if you’re on the fence about hiring a professional for your senior portraits, please give me a call at 734-424-0472 or visit our contact page.
I’d be happy to talk with you personally about what you want for your senior portrait session and help you make that happen. Your senior year of high school is already crazy enough, so let me help you make at least one thing go smoothly!
Sometimes my clients contact me looking for something simple and in studio. Maybe it’s because the yearbook requirements dictate a formal studio setting for the portraits, or maybe it’s just because simple can be easier. Whatever the reason, I’m always happy to create timeless portraits like the ones we created for this senior boy’s portrait session. So, without further ado, enjoy these portraits I created for this class of 2018 senior.
I’m excited to see which portraits G. and his mom will like best. It’s always interesting to see which of my clients’ favorites end up being my favorites too!
If you’re needing to plan your senior portrait session still, know that it’s never too late. Even if your yearbook deadline has come and gone, we can still create a series of senior portraits that you enjoy and want to display in your home. If your yearbook deadline is coming quickly, make sure to get in touch, as we may be able to fit you in before the deadline. Contact the studio today at 734-424-0472 or use the contact page on our website to get in touch!
The next big step for any Monarch caterpillar is to pupate! That’s when it turns from a caterpillar into a chrysalis. I was blessed to be around when one of the caterpillars pupated, but he was sneaky so I only managed to capture a before and after rather than a “during” …maybe next time. (if you missed my earlier posts, you can see the caterpillars when they were tiny, and the caterpillars when they’d grown bigger).
For purposes of disclosure, I should mention that I rehung most of the chrysalises… they were either on tin foil that I secured to the twig, or tied up there with dental floss. I did a bit of research beforehand so as to avoid damaging the creatures, don’t worry. But I wanted to let you know because these photos have been photoshopped — to remove the unsightly dental floss, tin foil, etc. I did my best to give an accurate rendering and not depart from reality. Maybe next time I’ll be brave enough to try the super glue method!
Anyways, enjoy these macro photographs of the Monarch caterpillar and Monarch chrysalises. They are really amazing to look at close up… and I just today learned that you can tell whether a butterfly is male or female while it’s in its chrysalis. There is a little seam at near those black dots at the top of the chrysalis. Very interesting! Maybe next time around I’ll know to photograph… 🙂 …hindsight is 20/20, huh?
With this recent cold spell, fall really seems to be upon us. But it wasn’t that long ago that we had warm sunny days like for Haylee’s senior portrait session. We planned Haylee’s portrait session to take place at Mill Creek Park in Dexter. As you might have guessed from some past blog posts, it’s a popular destination for portraits. But even so, it’s not hard to make your portraits look unique and personalized to you. Haylee was a great sport and smiled beautifully for the camera throughout her entire session…. and we ended up with a fantastic set of senior photos for her and her parents to enjoy.
Make sure to scroll all the way through this series of senior portraits, because I saved some of my favorites for the end. We did do a few portraits standing in the water, which I have to say, was cold but felt refreshing given the heat.
If you’ve been putting off planning your senior portrait session because it seems like a lot of work, just get in touch! We help you through the entire process, whether it’s choosing your location, giving advice on attire and outfits, or selecting the best portraits to hang on the walls of your family room. Your senior portrait experience can be relaxing and maybe …even fun! 🙂
Anyways, enjoy these photos. I did include the same dime in one of the photos so you could get a sense of scale. Because when you take such close up pictures… it’s hard to get a big or small a monarch caterpillar is. And they’re definitely fatter, I will add — just like in “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.”
I know some of you like videos. so here’s a video slideshow of the photos from both photoshoots.
I hope you enjoyed these photos. I will try to keep an eye on them so that you can see photos of them once they’ve made chrysalises. My dad, a longtime amateur entomologist, has always dreamed of getting a time lapse video of a monarch caterpillar emerging from its chrysalis. Wouldn’t that be cool? We’ll see if I can pull something like that off.
Anyways, I’ll leave you with one final fun fact, courtesy of my son’s monarch caterpillar book. Did you know that monarch caterpillars born late in the season will fly directly south, instead of mating? The ones born earlier in the summer are the ones that do the mating. Interesting. Over and out.
It’s always fun to do senior photos someplace local, someplace meaningful. Or, in the very least, someplace that is amazingly gorgeous! And that’s what Mill Creek Park is — gorgeous. You might know it as the Library Park, because the Dexter District Library overlooks the park. Or maybe you know the park as Warrior Creek Park….which it was formerly named in years past. Whatever you call it, the park is gorgeous.
Let’s just say, if you’re thinking about doing senior photos at Mill Creek Park in Dexter, you won’t be disappointed. I love the boat launch steps, the walking path under the bridge, the grassy natural areas, and even the playground. Mill Creek Park offers a nice variety of settings for most types of portrait photography sessions — and, most importantly, there are some nice shady spots to keep you out of the heat of the midday sun!
Here’s a sibling portrait session I did at Mill Creek Park this summer. N. is a senior at Dexter High School, while C. is a junior this year. It was nice to get photos of both of them during this senior and not-quite-yet-senior photo shoot!
Since you might want to see what some other parts of Mill Creek Park look like, here’s another senior photo session that we did there. Well, at least partly. Madison’s senior portrait session took place in downtown Dexter, and included some senior photos at Mill Creek Park in Dexter too. I love the one of her with her black lab. So adorable!
I’ve done various other senior portrait sessions at Mill Creek Park over the years.. the water is almost always nice to wade in, and feels great during hot summer Michigan days. On rare occasion the water is too high, and the current too fast, but usually my older (i.e. teen or adult) clients are able to comfortably wade into the shallows of the water. Here’s a few photos from a teen photo session at Mill Creek Park….
And for those of you who remember what Mill Creek Park was like before the boardwalk and other improvements went in, I haven’t forgotten either. Here are a few senior photos at Mill Creek Park when it was still known as Warrior Creek Park. Amazing how quickly we grow accustomed to new improvements, huh?
As an aside, there’s another nice park in Dexter that’s similar, but a little different — Hudson Mills Metropark. I’ve done senior portraits there too. If you want to take a peek, you can view Luke’s senior portrait at Hudson Mills Metropark. Here’s a teaser of his senior portrait blog post:
If you want to explore Mill Creek Park a little more, you might check out this blog post of mine about Mill Creek Park in Dexter. I have a few more recent sessions on the schedule to share with you at Mill Creek Park, so if you’re dying to see more senior photos at Mill Creek Park in Dexter, definitely sign up for my email updates so you won’t miss those posts.
If you want to learn more about planning your senior portrait session at Mill Creek Park (or elsewhere), please contact the studio today. We definitely are in a busy season right now, but should be able to fit you in before your yearbook deadline.
I photographed the A. Family when this cute little girl was just a newborn. And now here we are, doing a family portrait already… she’s grown so much! There is nothing more exciting than getting to watch my clients’ children grow up into their own little selves. Oh, I guess there’s one thing almost as good… and that’s when my clients bring their pets to the portrait session. I love including animals in family photos (or any type of portrait photo, for that matter!).
I’d love to talk with you about planning a fun family portrait session — whether or not you have pets to include! Call the studio today at 734-424-0472 to start planning for your next family photo.
Luke’s senior portrait session started at the studio, but most of his photos were created on location at Hudson Mills Metropark. When photographing clients at two locations, I always love to start in the studio because those portraits are a little more formal. By the time we get to the second location, everyone is relaxed and comfortable — perfect for more casual location portraits!
So, without further ado, enjoy these senior portraits taken at Hudson Mills Metropark!
Luke was a great sport during his entire senior portrait session. We managed to create all these senior portraits — and more — during his hour long session.
I’m always happy to work with clients who know exactly what they want… and with clients who want me to direct them completely. We will make your senior portraits uniquely you. If you’re interested in planning a laid-back senior portrait session and need someone who knows what they’re doing, call us at 734-424-0472 today!
My kids love nature (woohoo! Excited parenting moment, right?)… and they are always asking if we can keep bugs or insects to “watch them” for a while. Usually, we send the little critters back out into the wild after a brief observation period, of course. But when it comes to Monarch caterpillars, I’m willing to make an exception.
You see, we have a friend who’s been raising Monarch caterpillars for years, so I was excited when we finally found some! Where? In my front garden bed, surprisingly. The first round of caterpillars took a field trip to my son’s classroom for the entire class to enjoy watching. Those five (no, maybe six?) caterpillars were pretty big, almost ready to make their chrysalises.
I made a mental note to check the milkweed plants a couple times later in the week, just in case we missed any. Why? Because my preschooler was sad about not getting to see the caterpillars. Anyways, I happened to find six teeny tiny Monarch caterpillars. These guys would’ve been hidden really well if I didn’t know exactly which plants to search.
So, enjoy these photos. I’ll try to take some more once they’ve grown bigger so you can get an idea of how much they grow in the caterpillar stage!
For the past couple years, we have sponsored the Manchester Pistol Prodigies. Now, since the season is over, I can tell you… the Manchester Pistol Prodigies did really well in the realm of competitive shooting this past year. The team made it all the way to the 2017 National Championships! Congratulations everyone! The Manchester Mirror posted an article about the Pistol Prodigies heading to Nationals this summer — it’s a good read if you’re interested.
What a fantastic group of kids. And of course, they are headed up by a set of awesome coaches too. There’s nothing more important than good leadership when you are teaching youths about responsible gun handling. And every time I’ve been around the Pistol Prodigies, I can tell that they have been taught to be safe and responsible when handling firearms, and it carries over to other aspects of life too. I can tell you from personal experience that these kids are top notch. Nowhere else do I get so many “thank you for taking our photos” and polite comments from clients who are still youths.
SASP is designed to instill in young people a set of personal values and character traits for fair play, compassionate understanding, individual responsibility, sportsmanship, self-discipline, and personal commitment. As the sport itself, these qualities will stay with them throughout their lifetimes, helping each young athlete reach his or her full potential.
One of the best parts of my job is getting to see repeat customers. I love it when my littlest clients come back to the studio, because it’s always so amazing how much they’ve grown! And, let me tell you — if you’re worried about planning a portrait session for your child because he or she just doesn’t behave in front of the camera — don’t worry.
That’s my job — leave the magic to me. I feel a little silly telling you this, but I’ve been called a baby whisperer by clients who were sure the photo session would be a bust. So don’t stress out. After all, that’s why you’re trusting me with your memories, with creating portraits of your loved ones. Relax, and let me do my thing.
I hope you enjoyed seeing these first year portraits of P. (sigh, I can’t call him a baby anymore, he is getting so big!). If you want to learn more about planing your own portrait session with Betsy’s Photography, please call the studio at 734-424-0472 today. If you have a little one, or are expecting, make sure to inquire about our baby’s first year plan!
Rachel’s mom contacted me this summer about doing her senior portraits in a field of sunflowers. Cool idea, right? And we were in luck, because the weather was great on the day of Rachel’s session. A bit hot for anyone’s liking,…but, hey, it’s Michigan. We have to work with what we’re given. You’d never know it from these photos, because Rachel looks absolutely gorgeous, but it was drippingly hot. Seriously.
Enjoy this slideshow of our favorite images from Rachel’s senior portraits in the sunflower field.
And in case you’re a sucker for web photos instead of video slideshows, here they are! Rachel was a great sport. She put up with the hot sun, some windy gusts, and of course, my goofy requests that she pretend to laugh at her mom. All in all, Rachel’s senior portrait session went very smoothly though. We got some great portraits that I am sure her family will enjoy for years to come. And once I’ve designed the memories panel that her mom ordered for their home, I will share that with you too!
If you’re looking at doing senior pictures while the weather’s warm, get in touch with me ASAP to plan your session! Or, we can plan something for the fall… your call. Call the studio at 734-424-0472 to learn more about having your senior portraits done by award-winning master photographer Betsy Finn today!