Monday, October 21, 2013

When You're Young, Married, & Broke...Tripod Photoshoots are Your BFFs (A Christmas Photo Tutorial)

A couple weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending a huge, women-oriented conference that featured hundreds of booths.  It was fun and a great way to check out area businesses.  My crafty, photo-loving heart was absolutely giddy as I grabbed the business cards and info packets of photographers, only to realize that there was no way we could afford a photographer for our year photos aka "Christmas card" photos.  

It was disheartening to see a photographer's style that you just loved and couldn't afford to book a shoot with them.  Now I understand the costs of being a photographer, so I get that photos are worth the investment.  I fully support small businesses and that includes photographers.  I know that a lot of money goes into investing in photo equipment and software.  I own some it myself and used a lot of software in designing ad campaigns.  It is no cheap feat.  

But on that same note, I can't miraculously come up with a way to afford photos over grocery money.  That's just not happening and it would also be irresponsible.  

When we used to live at Camp Pendleton, we had such a large selection of photographers and many of them I still follow on Facebook because they're great photographers.  Back there, we could take the spot of a cancellation for $100, get an hour with a great photographer, and get a disk of images (some of them edited and some not).  I was completely happy with that.  Unfortunately I'm not quite as lucky to have found that opportunity here.  Instead, in order to get images on a disk, it was going to cost me $500 for one of my favorite photographers.  Yikes!

That price wasn't even remotely feasible for us.  So instead I decided to create my own photo shoot with my Nikon DSLR and my tripod.  I was worried because it wasn't ideal, I wanted cute pictures, but I also understood that financially the tripod was going to have to work some magic.
Ryan and I had an area in mind, drove around and decided to go by a public boat launch.  I prepared ahead of time by scoping out Pinterest and bringing along some props that I either had around or made.  Then we set out an area, set up the tripod, and set the camera on its timer.

Here are some of the results:

Now I also have Photoshop and the full Adobe Suite, so many of these photos were edited later on but I think the tripod and the Erskine's didn't do half bad.  To top of a great Sweetest Day, we ordered our Christmas cards, right after the photoshoot!

Be sure to look out for an upcoming post on how to style your tripod photo shoot and make it relatively painless for your partner =]

If you liked this post, share it with others! If you feel particularly moved by it, leave a comment because I love feedback and discussion. Social media links are provided below and thanks for reading!
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  1. Oh good, I was hoping you would pick that one for the final card!! Adorable =)

  2. These are the sweetest pictures! Our Christmas card this year is a couple's selfie we took during a family event. With so many photo printing websites, it's easy to score a deal on personalized cards!

  3. I loved how it turned out and immediately turned it into a Christmas card =]

  4. Oh definitely! If you're willing to design your card yourself, you can 75% the usual cost to make cards. I ordered 50 off of Vistaprint and spent $20.

  5. Haha I love Kaitlyn- she has the sweetest heart! Try a Google search for camera rentals. Sometimes you can rent DSLR's and tripods and there are so many tutorials out there that you could whip up a few pictures on your own. Otherwise, you can always check out a local university and see if you can find a student photographer with a solid portfolio or even Craigslist. I really only recommend that though for one-time photoshoots like for holiday cards or year update photos. For weddings and such, I would definitely spend the money on a really good photographer.

    I'm so glad that we've met! I love meeting people through Instagram and blogging!! Enjoy the apps- they're too much fun! =]

  6. You certainly don't look broke where it counts! Love watching you two grow in your marriage, thanks for sharing!

  7. How cute! The mistletoe ones were my favorite - glad you picked one of those. :)

  8. They turned out great!! Your camera is SO nice. And you should look into a remote for your camera, I think they are very inexpensive (like $10?!) That way you can capture a picture on the spot instead of waiting for the timer. :-)