One Year Olds Love…Veggie Sticks? FOUR Year Olds Love Cake!

One year olds love… veggie sticks???  More on that in a minute…

Yes we had two of our favorite brothers back again for younger brother’s one year old photos and older brother’s four year old photos, and we planned a cake smash as we often do to celebrate and capture a first birthday.  Meanwhile we have been photographing these guys since before the older brother was born with maternity photos when he was in utero!  We are always excited to have them back – their sessions are usually memorable for various reasons and this adventure was no exception!

veggie sticks

Our one year old was pretty set on hanging out with his mommy and didn’t really want to be sitting for pictures on his own at first, so we needed to take the extreme measure of “sending her away” – haha.  She took big brother with her down the hall to Toyology while Daddy and we tried to distract the birthday boy and maybe get him to focus on something other than mommy.  That worked!  Tricks of the trade ya know…

 veggie sticks

Then it was time for the cake smash which all one year olds love right?  Uh…. right?  Well, maybe not!  Everyone tried to get him to indulge and he just wasn’t having it.  He opted for the veggie sticks!  Smart kid!  You can never have enough vegetables in your diet right?  Maybe he’ll be a doctor or a nutritionist or a chef!  We even tried putting the veggie sticks in the cake!  Meanwhile big brother wasn’t going to let a perfectly good cake go to waste, so he dug in!  This made for a lot of laughs as you can imagine.

veggie sticks

veggie sticks

veggie sticks

Here is a fun vine with some highlights of the session.

All in all as I said it was another memorable session with these boys and we wouldn’t have had it any other way.  :-)

 

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Alesha Leads The Way For The Class of 2015!

Alesha leads the way for the class of 2015 with these photos from her spectacular senior session!  You already saw 14 members of this class as spokesmodels and those are “our” sessions where we test out new ideas.  We wrapped those up and now going forward the class of 2015 sessions belong to the seniors!

As for Alesha we have become very big fans of this girl in a very short time and we were very excited to photograph her.  We were itching to get going with our new seniors and we already had one rain out so we were not happy when we woke up to pouring rain and even some thunder on the morning of her scheduled photo shoot.  We had our eyes on the hourly forecast and it stayed pretty true to the prediction of better weather in the afternoon so we kept the appointment and crossed our fingers…

We started in the studio with our black background:Alesha Leads

Next we moved over to the white, but with a blue gel.  Using colored gels over our lights allows us to manipulate the color a bit which gives us a cool look.  Alesha looks great in the red against the blue!  This would probably be a good time to give a shout out to Gloria at The Beauty Lounge for the makeup with this close-up!

Alesha Leads

At this point we were ready to head outside and as luck would have it “outside” was ready for us!  The weather cleared up and we had a perfect afternoon!  Here is a fun little vine with a couple highlights of the day:

Love love love these next two photos – the lighting and all the green in this one is amazing!  Alesha has a natural and easy smile and this photo just works.

Alesha Leads

Alesha was a trooper – it’s a little yucky where she got in the water and she stood there and waited for one very large cloud to pass so we could get the lighting we wanted!  We took a series of photos here and here is one we like that has a bit of a unique look in black and white.

Alesha Leads

We enjoyed our time with Alesha and we are so glad to know her!  We hope you enjoyed these photos!

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Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is an incredible place, and if you haven’t been there I highly recommend making the trip.  We are huge fans of our National Parks and this one is only a little more than 4 hours from West Bloomfield, Michigan where we live depending on traffic.

Sleeping Bear Dunes

We were able to get away for the holiday weekend with our kids and we went “Up North” which is where many Metro Detroiters go during the summer to relax.  ”Up North” is not necessarily the Upper Peninsula – it’s just a few hours north of Detroit where things are generally beautiful and relaxing.  We hung out on Higgins Lake, hit the National Cherry Festival in Traverse City and then headed over to Sleeping Bear Dunes for our last full day up there.  Ally doesn’t do a ton of landscape photography, but she brought her camera along for the trip.  It was well worth it.  She was able to capture some really nice photos and we are excited to share them here!  Not everything that is “Frameable” has to be a face…  ha!

Sleeping Bear Dunes

These photos were taken along points of the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive within the park.  We did the Dune Climb before we drove the scenic route and we weren’t really prepared with a proper backpack to take the camera up the climb.  The climb is just pure fun (and tough) especially when you turn around and bound back down the sand.  As for the scenic drive a few of the overlooks are simply majestic looking out over Lake Michigan.

Sleeping Bear Dunes

Sleeping Bear Dunes

Sleeping Bear Dunes

This next shot is the only thing here I’m taking partial credit for – as I was walking along a path the moon caught my eye through this little gap in a dune and I called Ally over to stand right where I was standing to get the shot.  The rest is all Ally and her amazing craft – her eye and her talent!

Sleeping Bear Dunes

We hope you enjoyed these and they gave you just a taste of what this beautiful park has to offer!

 

 

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A Beautiful Little Girl On A Warm Summer Day….And A Cake SMASH!

A beautiful little girl on a warm summer day….and a cake SMASH is the best combination! We were thrilled to welcome this little princess back to the studio after she was here with her big brother as a flower pot for her six month milestone!  Maybe you remember the post about the Dapper Dude and Baby Blossom?  This time around we celebrated her birthday in style!  We had a solid two hour window in the morning before her nap and we headed out to one of our favorite locations to get some pretty outdoor shots.  It took her a minute to decide whether she felt like taking pictures on this day but once she made up her mind she really was a superstar…

cake smash

Her mom and grandma came along and we all enjoyed ourselves.  They had her dressed in the most beautiful outfits!  There were plenty of birds singing, several people and a doggy came by to say hello – just a perfect summer day.

cake smash

There is a lot to work with at this location including this bridge that we really love…

cake smash

Here is a little behind the scenes vine of the action – our apologies for the little blur in the middle – not sure what my iPhone was thinking for a second there, but this will give you an idea of how the session went and you will see where the real fun started…

Yep – with a first birthday cake SMASH!  What a hilarious mess!  These always crack us up and this one was truly a riot.  I think she enjoyed herself – what do you think?

cake smash

All in all a great time and we have had a ball watching this little one grow!  We hope you have enjoyed it too!

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Such A Cute Smiley Shmushy Boy!

Such a cute smiley shmushy boy was here with his parents recently!  That’s really the only way I can describe him.  Okay I guess you could use sweet and squishy too – any way you put it he was awesome and his parents were really nice too.  We had a lot of fun – lots of laughing and lots of Spanish too!  Ally just wanted to eat him right up.

Smiley Shmushy Boy

See what I mean?  Love this kid!  You can really get a feel for someone’s personality even at this young of an age – he is just a good natured smiley happy little boy, and why shouldn’t he be?  That’s how his parents are.  Peek-a-boo games are fun with the little ones to get them going sometimes and this session was no different with calls of “Donde esta Leo?” from his mom!  If you follow this blog you know I often like to include behind the scenes vines from the session.  This session was notable for producing one of my all time favorites!  Leo was totally in motion while his mom was holding him, and then it was like the little man was completely entranced when he saw that he was on camera – look:

Ah the “hypnotic power of an iPhone” indeed!  That clip cracks me up every time I look at it…

Meanwhile here is a great shot of the happy family of three all together…

Smiley Shmushy Boy

We also got pictures with mom and dad separately – really sweet.  First a little boy and his mommy:

Smiley Shmushy Boy

And then the proud dad with his son:

Smiley Shmushy Boy

We hope you enjoyed the sneak peeks from this session!  We always enjoy such a cute smiley shmushy boy like Leo!

 

 

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Siblings Bubbles and Flowers!

Siblings bubbles and flowers can’t possibly be anything but pure wonderful right?  Right!  You may remember a post from back in December where we presented a family that was growing “right before our eyes” with maternity photos followed by the beautiful new little baby with her family?  Well they are back and a lot can happen in 6 months…  :-)

Siblings Bubbles and Flowers

Yes indeed babies bloom!  We love our little 6 month flower pot babies.  This little one was one of the easiest newborns to photograph we ever had and she was a joy again this time around!  Six months is a great milestone and we especially love it when the six month old brings an older sibling back with her!  Big brother did such an awesome job in this session!  Mom and Dad were not sure he would be totally into sitting in the right spot and posing for the pictures together with his sister but he totally rocked it.  It did not hurt that this little guy has an affinity for bubbles, and the parents were prepared.  Take a look at this little behind the scenes vine of the fun and check out her face while you do!  Priceless.

Here is little man’s own turn in the spotlight…

Siblings Bubbles and Flowers

Style to burn right?  What a stud.  To say this was a fun session would be a huge understatement.  Here is an adorable shot of the two of them together – love the purple on purple and especially the expressions!

Siblings Bubbles and Flowers

And finally let’s close it out for now with the beautiful little princess!

Siblings Bubbles and Flowers

How cute is she?  We are already planning her one year cake smash at the end of the year and we cannot wait to see this family again!  We will be sure to share some of those photos so stay tuned!

 

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Doug’s Rant – Why You Should Care About “Google My Business”

It seems that you should care about Google Plus and now the new “Google My Business” after all, especially if you are a small business owner.

Google’s social media network (they prefer to call it a “layer”) has been around since June of 2011.  Google Plus is not as popular as Facebook but it’s still Google and it’s not going anywhere.  Does this mean you have to participate and get immersed in yet another social media platform?  Not quite.

Google My Business

However, here is where you should pay attention.  A while back I “claimed” Frameable Faces on Google.  I just went on Google and verified that I am an owner so I could fill in the information that is there about our business.  That is an important step because Google is obviously the most popular way to search the Internet.  Regardless of how much or how little you bother with search engine optimization or social media, people are using Google to find you and they will continue to do so.

What I didn’t know is that at some point by claiming my “place” (my business) on Google, that prompted Google to create a verified Google Plus Page for Frameable Faces – I had no idea it existed.  Kind of like a Facebook Business Page that they were calling “Google Places For Business” and now they have announced they have changed the name to “Google My Business”.  If you’re a little confused it’s okay – Google has done a good job of confusing the marketplace with how they’ve rolled out their products.

The good news is that the new “Google My Business” does represent an opportunity.  One thing I noticed when I went to the Frameable Faces page they created is that Google had been collecting data for me all along.  It told me how many people had viewed the page (presumably from Google search results), how many people had asked for driving directions to the studio and where they asked for them from, what key words they used to find my listing – lots of good data!

Are you going to lose business by not using Google My Business?  I can’t say that for a fact, but I don’t think it’s a good idea to ignore it.  From just what I see locally very few brands know about this so don’t feel like you’ve missed the boat so far.  The question is are you going to use this to your advantage going forward?

Here are a few benefits to setting up your page in my mind:

  1. It just generally looks good – when someone does a search for your business on Google it looks better when the results represent a thriving and welcoming business – one that appears to actually be in the game.
  2. Familiarizing yourself with this page and managing it can give you potentially valuable Google data and anaylytics about traffic and clients finding your brand via Google search.
  3. Getting a slight edge on your competition since not many brands are taking advantage of this.
  4. An opportunity to post and share fresh content in a spot where potential new customers might see it (as opposed to only a portion of your Facebook following for example).  Look at the screenshot below.  By doing a Google search for Frameable Faces this is what comes up on the right hand side of the screen.  Notice the “follow” buttons along with a link to an article from our blog that I posted to the Frameable Faces Google page.  It’s a way to capture fans directly from Google search results.

Google My Business

Don’t just take my word for it, check out this article about the benefits of this new tool.  Listen, I am not predicting that Google Plus will become a pervasively popular social media site with the masses like Facebook.  It is definitely growing now but it might not ever reach that tipping point where “everyone” is on it….and then again it might.  Either way we already know the search engine is dominant, so at least set up your brand properly for now with Google My Business.

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A Family Session With Four At Five And Under!

A family session with four at five and under can pose a challenge on paper no doubt, and Ally loves a challenge!  Of course we do a lot of planning and take plenty of time to make sure we get the photos we need, and when the kids are well behaved and cooperative that certainly helps.  There is a fine line however – “well-behaved” at a young age can mean “not allowed to be kids and have fun” if you’re not careful, and we do want to capture their personalities.  This particular crew struck the perfect balance – they had plenty of fun, but they also listened and stood where we needed when we needed and we were able to get great results!

Four At Five And Under

Such a fun family!  We would be remiss if we did not mention that we have met Rabbi Yarden before since our daughter has volunteered at Friendship Circle for some time now – an outstanding organization that is doing phenomenal things around the globe.  If you are not familiar with Friendship Circle I encourage you to take a look at the important work they are doing for people with special needs.  He and his wife Bayla are both on staff there so it was nice to have them and their family here.  This vine should give you a little behind the scenes flavor of how this session went…

We stayed with the simple pure white background and we love the outfits these adorable kids were wearing.  Each one got their own turn in the spotlight for this next series of portraits from youngest to oldest:

Four At Five And Under

Four At Five And Under

Four At Five And Under

Four At Five And Under

A great group as you can see!  We enjoyed our time with them and we hope you enjoyed the photos!

 

 

 

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A Mom and Two Daughters Together Is A Work Of Art!

A mom and two daughters together is a work of art without a doubt!  We would love to see more sessions just like this one with a mother and grown daughters.  Having them together is very special especially if they are not living in the same city and so are the results!

A Mom and Two Daughters

Meanwhile I’ll apologize if this is cheesy (and she doesn’t know I’m putting this in this blog post) but Amy is the mom and I want to give her a plug.  Part of the reason I worked “art” into the theme here is her business is Artworks by Amy and we love our very own “Frameable Faces Artworks” she made for us which we display here in the studio.  Our business card holder that greets you when you enter the studio and our outgoing mail holder were both made by Amy.  She does fantastic work on all kinds of items.  Here is the vine we posted when we first got ours… as you can see Ally was pretty happy!

Fun right?  Okay sorry for the little PSA, now back to the photos….  :-)

Here are a couple of nice photos of mom and each of her daughters individually.  We love the connection here!  So sweet.

A Mom and Two Daughters

A Mom and Two Daughters

Here is another vine and this time it is a little bit of behind the scenes of this session of these lovely ladies!

Amy was all smiles and she looked so happy we snapped a couple of her by herself!

Professional Headshot

Now that’s a happy mom!  We hope you enjoyed these photos – we think they are proof that a mom and two daughters together is a work of art indeed!

 

 

 

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Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014 – Team Frameable Faces!

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014 was another successful and meaningful day for Team Frameable Faces!  This year we set out with a goal of raising at least $1500 to fight cancer and we are happy to say we reached our goal!

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Photo by Hala Eliya Photography

Our friend and member of our team Kelly Taylor who manages the Orchard Mall joined our family for the team lap at the beginning of the day in the photo above.

This year’s theme for Relay was “Relaywood” and every team had a movie theme.  If you follow our blog you may know based on this post we are big fans of Pulp Fiction so that’s what we chose.  Our tag line was “Cancer’s Dead, Baby.  Cancer’s Dead” (as opposed to Zed).  We had Marsellus Wallace’s briefcase at our tent which may or may not have contained the cure for cancer.  It’s still a mystery what’s in that briefcase…  We were also joined by Saundra Hood who generously donated her time for massages at a dollar per minute.  In the film a gangster who went by “Tony Rocky Horror” was tossed over a 4th floor balcony for allegedly giving Mia Wallace a foot massage so we stayed away from foot massages just to be careful – haha!  We also may not have had any Big Kahuna Burgers or 5 dollar shakes but we did have a Jack Rabbit Slim’s dance contest – here is a vine of our winners – the Freedlands!

Here’s a photo of our tent and you can see our Pulp Fiction sign along with our Jack Rabbit Slim’s sign and Marsellus Wallace’s briefcase.

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Every team also has a type of cancer they focus on and each type is associated with a color.  Here is our poster for pancreatic cancer with the color purple and in keeping with the “Relaywood” theme that’s Patrick Swayze on our poster who died from pancreatic cancer.

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Lots of our peeps stopped by throughout the day including our fabulous event photographer Angela, and one particularly special moment for us was when we had one of our spokesmodels from each of the last three classes at our tent at the same time!  From left to right below Rachel Morof from the upcoming class of 2015, Erin Ben Moche from the just-graduated class of 2014 and Sierra Stone from last year’s class of 2013!

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Spokesmodels past and present!

Here is a collage of the day we posted on Instagram.

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

Ally and I have been touched by this awful disease with too many family members and an increasing number of friends – my Grandpa “Louie” Ackman, my Godfather Al Goldstein and Ally’s Grandma Reva Levine all were taken from us by different forms of cancer and here is a close up of the photo in the collage with luminaria bags now representing four of my former teammates at Michigan who are all gone way too soon.  That number is just way too high….

Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014

So as I said it was a memorable, meaningful, and emotional day at the Relay For Life West Bloomfield 2014.  But the weather was perfect and we had a lot of fun too.  We hope to see you next year at the 2015 Relay to help FINISH THE FIGHT!

 

 

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