Chris and Amanda’s Downtown Ottawa Wedding Photos Copy

Chris and Amanda’s Downtown Ottawa Wedding Photos

Black Lamb Photography

A year ago today, I shot Chris and Amanda’s downtown Ottawa wedding photos at the Museum of Nature as well as at their reception at the Ottawa Police Association Hall.  Happy anniversary! The weather was beautiful, warm and sunny and everything was on time.  I honestly can’t think of a wedding that I’ve been at that was on time the entire day.  Well, this one was on time for everything.  Kudos to you guys for keeping things on track.

Chris and Amanda looked fabulous.  It was really cute that the two of them were able to do a first look not once, but twice.  That’s because Amanda wore two different dresses in the space of about a half hour.  The first dress was worn for their traditional Chinese tea ceremony and then right afterwards she changed into her white wedding dress and Chris was able to see her for the first time again.  It was really cute.  Their ceremony was really nice and the food was great.  I got some laughs from some of the speeches that were made.  All in all it was a great day.

Origami Cranes

I have to mention their cool wedding decorations.  Amanda wanted to keep costs down and decided to make origami cranes for their wedding decorations.  When she told me about her plans, I told her that she had to make 1000 paper cranes in order to make their dreams come true as per Japanese tradition.  (I can get away with that request because Amanda and I have known each other for years.)

So, over several months, Amanda and Chris (and some helpers) spent many, many, many hours folding paper cranes in order to reach 1000 cranes.  I don’t doubt that they cursed having to fold so many paper cranes, but in the end it looked SO beautiful.  I was in awe when I walked into the room to see hundreds of them hanging on strings dangling from the ceiling.  There were also many that were hung on the walls, on the tables, by the doorways, up the stairs.  It was just so beautiful.

I worked in Japan for a year and after we would finish working, we would say to our coworkers and boss, “Otsukaresama desu,” which basically means, “Thanks for your hard work and effort.”  I cannot help but say to Amanda and Chris, “Otsukaresama desu!”  Your hard work and effort really paid off.  I hope that everyone enjoys the wedding day photos.  🙂

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Thanks to my 2nd shooter, Michelle, for this shot of their photo booth.

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You can check out Chris and Amanda’s spring engagement photos at the Ottawa Arboretum.  If you’re looking for an engagement or wedding photographer, I would love to hear from you.  Contact me today.

Chris and Amanda’s wedding day was made possible by some great wedding vendors in Ottawa.

Ottawa Wedding Vendors

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Chris and Amanda’s Traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony Copy

Chris and Amanda’s Traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony

Black Lamb Photography | Ottawa Wedding Photographer

Tomorrow is Chris and Amanda’s wedding anniversary.  Thus, I decided that I wanted to re-post Chris and Amanda’s Traditional Chinese tea ceremony photos on the blog today.  They got married on a Monday, which is pretty unusual by Canadian standards.  However, it was the date that featured the Chinese lucky number eight in their 08.08.16 wedding.  I LOVED the traditional Chinese tea ceremony that took place at Amanda’s mother’s house before the ceremony.  I’m a wannabe Asian, so I love any sorts of Asian details.  Amanda looked gorgeous in both her cheongsam and her white dress and Chris looked handsome in his suit and tie.

And the nice part about this is that these two are expecting their first child in a few months.  How excited!  I can’t wait to photograph their maternity photo session.  I’ll be sure to post some of the photos from their maternity session on the blog.  Stay tuned.

You can check out more of Chris and Amanda’s downtown Ottawa wedding photos.   🙂

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You can check out Chris and Amanda’s spring engagement photos at the Ottawa Arboretum.

Ottawa Wedding Vendors

Chris and Amanda’s wedding day was made possible by the following super star vendors:

If you’re newly engaged and looking for a wedding photographer, I’d love to hear from you!  Contact me today to get my wedding pricing guide.  We can also book a wedding consultation.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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500 Instagram Followers

500 Instagram Followers

Ottawa-Gatineau Portrait Photographer

This week I reached 500 Instagram followers.  Yahoo!  I think that’s not too bad for someone who only opened up an Instagram account this year and started posting this spring.  I’m not as tech savvy an many of the people on Instagram, but I’ve been learning a bit of the ropes.  I’d love for you to check out my Instagram account and follow along with me on my photography journey.  You can see a bot of my latest portrait sessions.

500-instagram-followersI photograph weddings, engagement, newborn, baby and family photos.  I also shoot maternity portraits and cake smash photo sessions.  Contact me to book a portrait session. 🙂

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Now Booking Queen Anne’s Lace Portrait Sessions

Now Booking Queen Anne’s Lace Portrait Sessions

Gatineau Ottawa Portrait Photographer  Little Lamb Photography

Queen Anne’s lace is in bloom!  Do you know what that means?  It means that I’m now booking Queen Anne’s lace portrait sessions!  Contact me asap to book your Queen Anne’s lace portrait session.  You don’t want to miss out on this opportunity because it only comes for a couple weeks each year.  There’s a GORGEOUS field of Queen Anne’s lace that’s growing beside my home.  I live in the country on the border of Masson-Angers, Gatineau and L’Ange-Gardien, QC.

queen anne's lace portrait sessions gatineau qc

Check out some photo sessions that I’ve taken in this huge field.  Two years ago it was all Queen Anne’s lace.  Last year it was all ragweed with a bit of Queen Anne’s lace.  However, this year is a beautiful mixture of both, with some large pockets of tonnes of Queen Anne’s lace.  I love this location and would be thrilled to photograph some portrait sessions in it.  Contact me today to book your rustic portrait session in this gorgeous field.  I look forward to hearing from you!  🙂

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Why I won’t photograph you or your kids for free Copy

Why I won’t photograph you or your kids for free

Ottawa Portrait  and Wedding Photographer

Black Lamb Photography | Little Lamb Photography

I posted this a year or two ago.  However, in the Ottawa area photographry community, an e-mail from a certain person has been going around to many local photographers.  It’s a person who is asking everyone to photograph her kid in order for the photographers to use the images in their portfolios.  However, the problem lies in the fact that she’s asking many well establisehd photographers who already have good portfolios to do this.  So, basically, she’s just asking for a free photo shoot in the guise that she’s doing us the favour and not the other way around.  Thus, I decided that I needed to repost this article again to help enlighten the public as to what that really means when people ask photographers to work for free.

Before I begin explaining why I won’t photograph you or your kids for free, I will admit that from time to time I do casting calls for free shoots if I need a specific shot for my portfolio or I’m doing a styled shoot.  However, I usually just ask people I know (or their kids) to pose for me.  This is because I don’t want to be known all over town as the ‘free photographer’.  Experience has shown that word of mouth for free sessions usually doesn’t pan out into paid referrals.

Photography As a Gift For Close Friends Only

Once in a while I choose to give a photo session as a gift to my closest friends for a special occasion.  However, I must mention that when my closest friends and family ask for a photo shoot, they usually offer to pay me for my services. Or they offer a needed service in return.  You see, they want to support me and my business.  With that said, imagine getting random e-mails (yes, this has happened more than once) from strangers along the lines of this: “I love your work, but money is tight and I can’t afford to pay for your services.  But, if you’re looking for models for your portfolio, I would be happy to let you take pictures of my children.  My kids are SO cute!”

Riiiiiiiiight….like I’m just dying to use your kids as models for my portfolio, so I will shoot them for free.  Yes, I see how you’ve made it look like you’re doing me the favour and not the other way around.  Your angle is that you’re letting me have the privilege of shooting your unbelievably adorable kids.  However, you fail to acknowledging that I’m actually doing you the favour of creating beautiful (and might I add professional) photographic heirlooms of your children that you’ll cherish for years to come.  I see how that twisted logic works.

why-i-wont-photograph-you-or-your-kids-for-freeMembers in my church take advantage

Sadly, people from my own church are the worst offenders for asking for freebies.  Church members (from when I lived in BC, Ontario and Québec) are the only people who have ever asked for free wedding and engagement photography.  When I was living in Vancouver, an acquaintance from my church invited me to her wedding.  I had zero intention of attending because, frankly, I didn’t even like her. Before I’d even RSVP’d, she actually e-mailed asking me to shoot her wedding for free as a wedding present!  (Who does that?!?!?)  She got married on a Friday in Seattle, WA.  And then her reception was on the Saturday in Canada.  Never mind that I would’ve had to take two days off work to shoot her wedding and reception.  Since when is an acquaintance expected to give a wedding present worth over several thousand dollars?!?!?!?!?

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Or imagine getting a phone call like this from a church ‘friend’ about their wedding photography, “We would love for you to be our photographer to help you build up your wedding portfolio.”  Then, when I offer them a discounted price (because I was friends with him), his response was, “We’ll get back to you.”  After that phone call, it was crickets.  It floors me that he tried to present the request like they were helping me out, when what they really wanted was a free wedding photographer.  You can’t even imagine how insulting that is–especially when all was said and done and they didn’t even invite me to the wedding!

Photography is a luxury.  Treat it as such.

I get that like most products and services, professional photography is a luxury not everyone can afford.  It’s no different than wanting an Audi, but only wanting to pay the price for a Kia because that’s all you can afford.  Just get the Kia already because that’s what’s in your price point.  It’s the same with photography.  That’s the beauty of why there’s different photography services and products for every sort of budget.

If you can’t afford a professional portrait session on location, then by all means go to Walmart, SuperStore or Sears.  I have a blog post about why I won’t charge the same as big box studios.  And since I have to point out the obvious, photographers aren’t in business to be charities.   I already donate quite a bit of money to charity each year.  Donating food or money to people in need is one thing.  However, no one will die without having a professional portrait taken.  They also won’t die ‘lowering’ their photography standards by going to a big box studio.  Here’s an idea: just find a cheaper priced photographer, instead of asking me to lower my pricing.  Easy peasy.

There are students in college or ones still learning their craft who might need free models to practice on.  However, asking a legitimate business to do the same thing to ‘build their portfolio’ is insulting.  I truly want you to understand what you’re actually asking of me or any other professional photographer when you ask a photographer out of the blue for a free shoot.  If we really need a model, don’t worry, we can make the initiative to get one ourselves.

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Money is limited for everyone–not just you

Like you, money is tight for many photographers.  Like you, I need to pay my bills, but unlike you, I also need to pay for my cameras, lenses, computer and computer software, photo props, marketing, insurance, car maintenance, second shooters, and other things used for running my business, which run up to thousands (note: plural) of dollars every year.  I can’t pay my bills or even purchase equipment by doing free jobs.  I’m sure you understand.  Imagine if your own employer expected you or your partner to constantly work for free or for very little pay.  Now put yourself in my shoes when that exact situation happens constantly.

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Why should I work for free?  Do you?

Sadly, photographers and other artists are constantly getting requests to work for free.  What adds salt to the wound is that the ‘takers’ aren’t even trying to offer anything in return.  They don’t offer to swap services or offer something of value as compensation.  Instead, they’re just straight up asking for a freebie.

I have a family to support

I want to show you something.  See that cute little face above?  That’s my daughter.  Since becoming a mother, I value my time a lot more.  You see, when I’m shooting or doing post production on my computer (aka: working), I’m not spending time with her.  I deserve to be compensated for taking precious time away from her and my husband.  It’s no different than when other workers get compensated for their time.  Why should my time be less valuable than yours or anyone else’s?

Too many people don’t seem to understand that this is our livelihoodThis is how we choose to earn money—to actually make a living like everybody else Shooting free sessions  doesn’t pay our bills, put a roof over our heads or put food in our children’s mouths.  These are just a few things that we need to do with the money we earn from doing our job.  It also doesn’t compensate us for taking time away from our families in order to do those shoots.  It also doesn’t pay for the gas or the wear and tear of our cars to get to the location to shoot.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this.  I hope you understand now why I can’t shoot your kids’ photos or your wedding for free.

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For clients who truly value custom photography, I would love to hear from you.  Contact me today to book your session or to get more information about my photography services.  My photography work has been featured on 25+ photography blogs.  You can check out some of my featured photography.

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Chelsea Summer Family Portrait Session

Chelsea Summer Family Portrait Session

Gatineau Maternity Photography

Last week I had the pleasure to photograph a Chelsea summer family portrait session of this adorable little family.  They put good effort into their outfits.  I love when my clients dress well for their photo shoot.  If you’re paying to have professional portraits taken, take the time and care to make sure that you and your family look your absolute best.  These heirloom photos will be cherished for generations.  And they’ll be hanging up in the walls of your home.  You’ll be glad you put the effort into how you looked for your photo session.  Trust me.

The Boys

With both boys being under five years old, they did an AMAZING job during their photo shoot.  It was a bit tough for them, because we did the shoot later in the day.  And they didn’t have a nap.  However, they still produced some cute smiles.  They also let maman and papa get some shots of just the two of them.

First, we started shooting at the quaint little covered bridge in Chelsea, QC.  It completely surrounded by farmland, which is my favourite sort of place to shoot portraits.  Next, we headed over to the beautiful Le Vignoble de Chelsea.  They have a pretty property for their grape vines as well as lots of maple trees for their sugar shack.  And of course, my favourite, they had fields of long grass.  It was the perfect setting to finish off their family maternity session.  I’m so happy with how the photos turned out.  I hope that you like them too. 🙂

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Are you pregnant or do you know of anyone who is pregnant?  Contact me to book a maternity photo session.  I adore photographing couples in love and maternity photos are the next chapter in a couple’s lives.  Let me document this important time in your lives.  You won’t regret it.

Check out more of my maternity portrait work:

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Rustic Extended Family Portrait Session

Rustic Extended Family Portrait Session

Ottawa and Gatineau Family Photographers

Today, I’m showing some photos from a rustic extended family portrait session that I shot almost two weeks ago.  This family flew from other parts of Canada to spend some time together in the Outaouais area.  I met them at a cabin in Alcove, QC where they were staying for a few days.  It was a gorgeous place, surrounded by trees and fields.  A bit off the beaten track.  I love anything remotely rustic, so I was thrilled to see where I would be shooting when I arrived.  It really was a perfect location for their rustic extended family portrait session.

A Few Hiccups

To say that we had some problems is an understatement.  The odds were completely stacked against us for this family portrait session.  Firstly, the weather was rainy all week long.  And then the day of, it was dark and grey all morning and then raining into the afternoon.  I texted my client at 7:30 am to see if we could move the time up to the morning before it began to rain.  However, a couple of the family members had been suffering from food poisoning from the night before, so that was a no go.  (Food poisoning is definitely a first for me when shooting a portrait session.)  However, the next day the weather forecast was even worse.  In sickness or health, these troopers got the job done and posed for my cameras.

Come Hell or High Water

Normally, I would have rescheduled the shoot to a different day.  However, these guys were only here for a short time before they flew back home.  The window of opportunity was extremely small, like no room to reschedule.  So, I tried to get into the mindset to shoot this session like I would a wedding–the show must go on no matter what.  However, when I shoot weddings, I always have another person working with me.  But, when I shoot portraits, it’s just little ol’ me who shows up, which is fine for 99.99% of the time.  This was the 0.01% time I needed another person.

What’s a girl to do when she’s in need of help?  I literally begged my husband to come to the photo shoot with me.  I needed to have someone hold an umbrella over me and my cameras in case it rained.  And since it was an 80-90% chance of rain, I was desperate.  Anyone who knows my husband knows that this is NOT his thing.  He’s happy that I love what I do and watches our daughter when I go out on photo shoots.  But by no means does he want to have ANYTHING to do with the actual machinations of my job in the field.  In the end, he came toting our daughter with us.  She was just excited to get out of the house and to see some other kids.  I was beyond relieved and grateful that he came with me.

With a heart full of gratitude that everything worked out beautifully, I present to you their photos.  🙂

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Book Your Family Photo Session

If you’re looking for a family portrait photographer to shoot your family portraits, I would be thrilled to hear from you.  Contact me today to book your portrait session.  Check out more of my family portrait work:

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