Elm Grove Family Photography

The Kids Are Back in Town | Estock Family Sneak Peek

When is the best time for family portraits?

The fact is, there is no perfect answer. I tend to be much busier with families during the second half of the year - so if you want some extra TLC, you may want to consider a winter or spring session.

Also, if one of your goals is to get holiday cards from your family session, I’ve got you covered! I’ve had families as early as June ordering Christmas cards. (They come with a free reminder to send them out!)

Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the ideal time of year for your family portraits.

Is your family in town?

If your kids are older, winter break is an ideal time for family photos. They’re already home from college. Your session will take less than two hours and just like when they were little, you can bribe them with food.

Do you want to be indoors or outdoors?

If you are absolutely set on outdoor photos with warm fall foliage in the background, I think you’ve answered your own question. If you want snow photos and nothing else, we clearly know when and where you are destined to go.

Ed. Note: Tomorrow is your magic snow day. Call Abbie immediately and start getting the kids geared up first thing in the morning.

On the other hand, if you love outdoor photos but really don’t mind a nice, clean studio session either, then you’ve opened up a whole year of opportunity. I have a spacious studio in Elm Grove, Wisconsin that is just waiting for you and your family - from three to thirty - quantity is no concern. Bring them all!

What is your decorating style?

No, this isn’t some weird personality test. But knowing how you decorate your home does help me choose where to go for your outdoor session - and what type of setting we use for your indoor session.

Do you like long walks on the beach or roughing it in the woods? Those settings are self-explanatory. We might go to the beach or to the woods. (See? You’re so good at this!) Do you lean more modern and urban? Maybe we go downtown. Are you into the hottest barnwood trend? I know of places you would just adore!

The key to location choice truly is coordinating your family photos with your decorating style. Afterall, you will be decorating your home with a piece of portrait art - and we want it to pop off your wall in a beautifully natural way.

You don’t have to have all the answers.

I will guide you along the way with phone calls, emails, questionnaires and more. By the time your session rolls along, we will know where and when and why.


So, let’s talk about Tracy.

She knew her kids would be home for Christmas.

She bribed them with haircuts and lunch.

Since it was December, we smartly planned on a studio session. I worked with Tracy on selecting a set that would suit her style and clothing choices.

Here’s a Sneak Peek of Tracy and her sweet little family. Well, they’re not so “little” anymore, are they?

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Let’s talk about scheduling your family photos. You don’t have to know any of the answers, but let’s start the conversation.


Smith Siblings Sneak Peek

Imagine if your grown children got together behind your back.

But instead of whining about how hard their childhood was (or celebrating how great it was!), they were actually gathered for a surprise photoshoot for your Christmas gift.

That was this group. You’ll have to wait to see the entire group until after the holidays. However, there’s a story inside this story that I need to share…

It just so happened that this giggly married couple never had engagement or wedding photos.

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Maybe she wasn’t wearing white lace and he didn’t have a tuxedo, I was honored to capture these two in their first professional portraits of their couplehood.

I had them stand face to face and they could barely hold it together! They were cracking themselves up! It was endearing to watch.

Is your clan due for some updated (or never had) family photos? I would love to help you out with that! And don’t think that the weather outside will keep us from a great session… I have a comfortable studio that can fit any size group. Seriously… I’ve had families of 30+ and networking groups of 70+.

Click below to learn more about my family portraits.


raise your hand if you love cake | happy birthday Sebastian!

Sebastian.

A charming, energetic little smiler.

Who likes cake.

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This little boy came to me - well, he snagged a ride from his parents - for his one year portraits. We had quite the time… playing with blocks, pretending to sweep, climbing stairs, sitting on chairs and stools. And then… the big finale. The Cake Smash.

Sebastian is not shy around cake. He dove right in. And loved every second of it. (Ok, so did we!)

Afterwards mom and dad literally peeled his clothes off and put him into pajamas for a great, post-sugar-rush sleep.

Happy birthday, little one!

Sneak Peek and a Dog

After long last, Wendy brought her adorable and fun little family into the studio for some photos. One of the members is Rusty the Dog. (Yes that's a link to his very own - and very humorous! - Facebook page!)

Yup. Another family with a dog, another group of humans ignored by Abbie the photographer. I had treats all ready to go for the dog but poor (human) Ian got nada. I owe you, kid! 

Everyone did great and I cannot wait to share the rest. Wendy and her blank walls will be very, very happy. I just know it.

For now, I love this shot. It's very American Gothic, don't you think?

Happy Sneak Peek Day!

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Want to learn more about portraits with Stories Framed Photography? CLICK HERE to read more.


Elm Grove Family Portraits | At Home with the Kandulas

I really enjoy going to the homes of my clients for portrait sessions. Not only do I get to steal their decorating ideas (hee hee), it gives me a chance to push myself photographically, challenge my creativity and rev up my imagination.

Shooting in clients' homes is not as easy as setting up in my studio. There, I know what to expect from the surroundings, how much space I have to work with and what the background will look like. It's MY home base.

When I go to a client's home, sometimes I get to preview the location, but sometimes it doesn't work out. So I have to wing it. And think on my feet. 

Luckily, I've been to the Kandula home before. The last time I was there, we created some full-on Christmas portraits as well as some beautiful time-neutral extended family portraits.

Merry Christmas, 2015! (Don't forget your fur baby!)

Merry Christmas, 2015! (Don't forget your fur baby!)

This time, they wanted to do something different -- and maybe not quite as festive. After a brief tour of their (gorgeous!!) home, I set my vision in motion. We settled on two rooms (saving some others for next time, perhaps?). One was a basement bar and the other.... well, let's see if you can figure it out.

Aren't they classy? This family has some exceptionally great taste. And that bar? It's not your average Wisconsin basement bar, that's for sure!

Here are some others from the same session... would you believe we were in a WINE CELLAR? The brick wall was calling to me. 

Oh, and you know how I always say, "Quick before they grow up?" The photos below were from our session in 2015. I never kid around when talking about babies growing up. It happens too fast, and amazingly, right before our eyes.


Do you want some in-home family portraits? Would you rather come to my studio for a cleaner look? Or maybe you want an outdoor setting? I aim to please! My number one goal is to create images that will reflect your style and personality. Let's talk!