central nj

Welcome 2018!

Okay, okay, I know I'm a little late posting this, but it has been a CRAZY season! Starting in October until the New Year, I have been busier then ever before, and I have all of you to thank for that! I've met so many wonderful new families & clients this year and got to photograph my return clients (and try not to be in disbelief by how big all these kiddos are getting!). Just want to give you all a little update on the season and what's coming up:

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First for some awesome news: as you hopefully know, at the beginning of the season we pledged to donate a portion of all sales from October & November to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). This cause is so important to me because I was diagnosed as a juvenile diabetic at a young age and I'm also a member of their Youth Leadership Committee! Not only did we meet our goal, we exceeded it by $50! Thank you so much to everyone who helped this happen!

Next, I of course have to give a shout out to all the amazing families I photographed this season. Everyone was super sweet, relaxed, and just my kind of client! Here's a few of my seasons favorites! (and if your's isn't here, don't worry it's probably still one of my faves because there was alotttttt haha!)

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Our Christmas Minis were also a hit this year! This was my favorite Christmas set yet with a red and green rustic theme that included vintage sleds, a frosted tree, and lots of plaid. (In case you can't tell, I loveeee plaid!)

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Now for what's coming up! We are having superrrr cute spring mini-sessions on 3 exclusive dates: March 10th (just in time for Easter), April 15th, and May 27th! Keep an eye of our Facebook and Instagram pages for when we post the official set next week, but for now here's a small sample.

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It's January, so I always say now is the perfect time to update your business portrait! We offer sessions in our studio and have a full selection of color backdrops as well as outdoor scene backdrops, so we don't have to get too chilly outside.

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It's That Time of Year Again, Holiday Minis are Back!

Every year I try to do a new and fun set for Holiday minis; Last year was Candy Canes & this year is Snowflakes! With a set complete with snow, a white & blue tree, and some very friendly polar bears, this years picture will look festive and fun for everyone!

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Each session includes a 30 minute session, 5 digital images (fully retouched!), a private online proofing gallery, and one gift 8x10 print. Each child gets their own take home gift as well! Sessions are only $99 but are limited to 2 exclusive dates, Saturday, November 19th and Sunday, December 4th. Each day is limited to 5 spots so reserve yours as soon as possible!

The set as you can see below is themed around snow with touches of silver and blue!
Photos can be taken with or with the polar bears as well.

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Please feel free to contact me via my contact page or at HellionPhoto@gmail.com & 732•710•2426. Rather have a full family session? Then check out my Family Mini Sessions running until November 27th here! Hope to see you this Holiday Season!

Tips for Getting Your Kids To Be On Their Best Behavior For Your Family Session!

So you have a date set, your family's outfits picked out & coordinated, and you've checked the weather for your session date three times, so you're ready, right? One thing you may not of thought of is how to prepare for your kids to be on their best behavior! There are a few simple things you can do so your shoot goes as smoothly as possible!

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Plan out your naps. If your child is still on a nap schedule, make sure our shoot time is not interfering with one of their naps. If your child is sleepy or cranky, that may show up on their faces and it may also be difficult to get them cooperate in posing for photos. So make sure we schedule before or after a nap, whenever you feel your child will be at their best!

Have a snack before the the session. Parents know a hungry kid can be a scary kid! A small snack before a session (nothing too messy) can help keep them happy, especially if you're waiting until after your session to eat. Just make if they're eating anything that can stain or spill that they aren't in their photo outfit while eating it!

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Bring toys and props. During a family session I like to get all different types of combinations of people in photos, so I'll do the whole family then maybe just the children or just the parents and everything in between! So to keep you child's mood up in between photos, you can bring a toy for them to play with sometimes and it can be fun to get photos of them with a toy that means something to them. A favorite book, stuffed animal, ball, musical toy or whatever else that might enjoy is a great way to keep them happy and show some personality in their photos as well!

And my personal favorite, which I think is fun to do for any age family: make a fun day out of it! Play up the photo shoot as a special family day. You can do other activities after the shoot like go to the park, get ice cream, go out for lunch, or do some fun seasonal activity like picking apples or going to see Santa! The activities afterwards can be a good motivator to behave during the shoot.

I never want family photos sessions to be stressful for anyone. A calm, relaxed session is a great session, and hopefully with these tips it will help your whole family stay happy so I can create the perfect family photos for you!

How Do I Prepare For My Portrait Session?

Since I am running a headshot and portrait special (that can be found at the bottom of this page!) I decided to create this entry to better educate everyone on what to do to best prepare for your session!

The first thing you want to do is to decide what you want your portrait to convey. Do you want to look warm and inviting? Powerful and in charge? Fun and creative? Make sure to tell me this so I can best direct you on what poses will work best for you session! Make sure you think about this question when choosing the following things for your shoot!

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Second you will want to choose your outfit. For executive and business you will want to pick something very professional of course. For men I suggest bringing a great, well fitting suit as well as some options for ties or shirts. Certain patterns do not photograph well or can be very distracting, bring a few options and I can help you pick! Business woman have a few more options, I suggest aimimg for things that are structured like suits, blouse with a blazer, or a structured dress. As for jewelry, treat it like you would treat a tie, try not to pick anything to distracting, we wont people to look at you, not your jewelry! 

If you're not taking an executive business portrait you have a lot more options! If you just need an 'About Me' photo for your website or something similar aim for something that says your professional but shows you personality! If you own a clothing or jewelry store wear what you sell or if you're a makeup artist bring your brushes to use in a photo, feel free to ask me and I would be happy to help you pick something out and come up with ideas. For actors I would suggest mostly neutral colors (black, gray, tan, and white) in a range from v-necks, fitted shirts, button up shirts, and sweaters.

The next thing you want to pick out is your location. There are so many options when it comes to locations. In my studio I keep different neutrals like white, gray, and black on hand which work best for clean simple backgrounds. If you ask ahead of time I can also order a different color for you, there are tons to choose from! Your other option is environmental shots, which I love to do! You can use the outdoors and shoot in front of beautiful buildings, trees, flowers, brick walls, textures, skylines, and so much more. Or you can shoot indoors with things that are relative to you or what you do for a living, like shooting at your desk, in your office, in front of books or art, on stage, in a theater, the options are endless.

The last thing you will want to do appearance-wise is beauty and grooming! For men you should make sure you're properly shaven to the amount you want, so whether you want that clean shaven look or a neat trimmed beard make sure you check it the morning of! For men and woman always check your hands if they might be in the photo, they will need to be properly trimmed and either clean and free of polish or freshly painted. For all my female clients I always suggest getting you hair and makeup up done if you aren't confident in doing it yourself! The best hair style is a blowout which many salons near my studio offer. Ask me and I would be happy to send you all my recommendations for hair and makeup! 

And last but certainly not least don't be afraid to look at examples online! You can search on Google and Pinterest for photos. Try terms like 'male lawyer portrait' or 'female acting headshot' This will help you to decide what type of photo you might want. Feel free to send these to me so I can get an idea of what type of photo you like.

Lastly, as always, don't be afraid to ask me questions about your shoot. I can help you decide what to where or even what kind of smile you should have, I am here to help you get you perfect portrait!

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