All posts by louisemichaud

Want to be the face of our new Brand? Enter to Win!

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How would you like to be the face of our newest campaign launching this spring?
Between now and April 1, enter to win an introductory photography session for two. This spring, we are launching a new collection – the Tulle Series – and you and your BFF could be a few of the faces of our campaign! Enter the contact form below for one entry. Refer a friend to enter and tell them to mention your name in the contact form and you’ll get a 2nd entry!!
Bring your BFF and your favorite spring heels and we will do the rest.

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Using Photography to Break the Cabin Fever of Winter

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Do you ever find yourself experiencing cabin fever when the snow is just too much? We hardy New Englanders are all too familiar with heavy snowfall and snow days spent inside because of it. But how can you avoid boredom when shut in? Sure, you can watch TV or Netflix, pop in a DVD, or even curl up by the fire, hot cocoa in hand. But what about doing something a little more productive? Something that will really break the cabin fever better than your favorite TV show? Consider turning your snow day into a photoshoot. You’ll be able to further develop your photography skills while also having fun with it. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Clear the Clutter – The first step to any project is to make sure you have a clean workspace, and, in the case of an art project, a clean canvas. For the photoshoot be sure to clear any clutter from the background. If not, people’s attention could be drawn more toward this clutter than to the actual subject, even if the background is blurry.
  • White Balance – It is important to capture the true colors of whatever you’re photographing. Sure, your eyes can automatically detect the waves of light, which your brain then translates into the color you see. Cameras and their lenses, however, haven’t quite caught up to speed though. In order to capture the true colors, you need to do what is called white balance. This can be done with a plain, white posterboard. Place the white posterboard as a background, then put the object in front of it. The white posterboard should be the only thing in the background with the object you plan to photograph in the foreground. White balance is a simple technique to get the truest color in all your photos.
  • Let it Shine – Another technique that will enhance the colors in your photos is to let in natural light from the most abundant source: the Sun. You may have to feng shui the room a bit to get the right amount of light focused on the object, but it’ll be worth it to get that perfect shot. If the picture is still too dark, though, you may want to use the flash as well to really get the desired effect.

Don’t let a winter storm bring you down. Enhance your photography skills by turning your snow day into a full blown photoshoot. You’ll get some great photos you can be proud of and share with others. It may take some prep work, but you’ll be a pro soon enough.

The Importance of Family and Family Portraits for the Holidays

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Family Portrait

It’s that time of year again. As the days get shorter, the holidays draw nearer and nearer. And this means several family gatherings, whether it’s a Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa party, or a party to ring in the New Year, there are many occasions to celebrate with loved ones. And who could forget the holiday cards? This is where you get to show off your beautiful family, pets included of course! Let’s take a look at why family is so important during the holiday season, and what you can do to document the growth of your own:

  • Family is always there for you – The great thing about family is that they’re blood. Friends may come and go, but family is forever.  You may not get to see them every day, so cherish the time you do spend together. You also have the chance to catch up with each other, to talk about what you’re studying in school, a new job opportunity, or even to formally announce an engagement or pregnancy to all your loved ones.
  • Family Portraits – Louise Michaud Photographer takes family portraits year ’round. Arguably the most important part of any family portrait is, of course, the family, so get the family together, dress to impress, and don’t forget to smile. Family portraits let you document your lives and the seemingly endless growth of your family. What’s more, you get to show off your beautiful family in their best dressed when you have friends or extended family over to visit. You’ll be sure to get a few compliments about how beautifully your family is growing, especially the kids, and even the family pet(s). Be sure to hang or place the masterpiece somewhere where it will be the center of attention so you can see it every day and remember the importance of family.

If ever there is a time for family, it’s during the holiday season. Gathering family members is what makes the holidays so enjoyable. It’s not everyday you get to see each other, so make lasting memories together. Happy holidays from Louise Michaud Photographer!

Taking a Corporate Headshot

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You might be questioning the importance of, or the reason for having a corporate headshot. It is generally a good idea to have corporate headshot of yourself as well as employees. You can upload them to the staff page of your company’s website. This is particularly advantageous if yours is the kind of business which deals heavily in client relations, as the headshots and accompanying, written staff profiles give personality and identity to your staff and company as a whole. Incorporating headshots may help clients engage and interact with your staff, as the headshots act as a friendly “hello”. However attractive the final product may be, headshots can be rather costly, which is why some businesses opt to do it themselves. But before you take out the camera and start shooting, read our tips and tricks for taking the best headshots of you and your team: 

  • Getting started – Let’s begin with outfit choice. A headshot should be, you guessed it, shot from the chest up! Having said that, choose a few nice shirts to wear. It is best practice to wear something comfortable and in which you look and feel good – fashion with a function. When you feel good in the clothes you wear, it shows through a bright, smiling face. Sometimes, you’ll even get a good day out of it. You know how that song goes, “It’s a good day to have a good day.”

  • Putting on your face – You’ll want to look your sharpest, not only in the clothes you wear, but more importantly, the point of the headshot, the face. Don’t go overboard on the makeup though, as you could end up looking nothing like yourself on a normal day. The point of a headshot is to provide a clear, attractive, and friendly picture of yourself. Women should lean more toward neutral colors or a light application of makeup. Men should be either clean-shaven or well-trimmed, depending on if you usually sport a beard or mustache, or not. You should also take the time to style your hair for some added flare and personality.

  • Lighting and backdrop – These will change depending on if you’re either inside or outside. If you’re inside, you’ll have to set up artificial lights and maybe even a background if the walls are unflattering. Stick with a solid color background, and make sure the lights aren’t too bright and in your face. The lights should complement the face, but not be so intense that they project shadows on your face or give your skin a different color. Two lights on either side of you should do the trick, with one closer to your face to create a soft shadow. If you’re outside, you’ll have to play with angles for a bit, depending on where in the sky the sun is. You don’t want to be in the deep shadows, as it may be too dark to see the image clearly, but you also don’t want to be in direct sunlight, as it will bother the subject’s eyes and the excessive light may be unflattering as it falls on the face. You’ll want to be in the “open shade”, or the spot in which you’re not directly in the sun, yet you’re still lit up. Choosing the background will depend on the angle you previously chose, as it would be harder to fight with the angle and sunlight if you were to choose the background first. Pay close attention to make sure the angle, light, and background complement the subject’s features, including face and hair.
  • Selecting and editing for the perfect headshot – You should take several photos with different poses and degrees of smile, so you have a selection from which to choose. Once you’ve chosen the best, most attractive picture, it’s time to do some last minute touch-ups and editing. You can either do this through a program like Photoshop or with a simple camera app. You should first crop and straighten, then adjust the brightness, improve the color and lighting, and sharpen or soften the image as needed. And finally you can save it once you’re happy with the finished product.
  • Profile write-up – Underneath each headshot on your website should be a proper description of the employee, including their skills, talents, specific role(s) within the company, and special interests or activities outside of work for added personality. You can even include something quirky, like a favorite food, tv show or movie, sport, if they met a celebrity and how or what the interaction was like. Be sure to include their education background as well to attribute where they learned their specific skills. The write-up itself should only be about 4-5 sentences long and really showcase who the employee is as a person and why they’re a valued member of the team.

While having corporate headshots aren’t necessary for every company, it will provide your clients with a view of your team and how their respective talents, skills, and roles culminate to make up your adroit and dexterous company. As with any photoshoot, the subjects should be well-rested, well-fed, hydrated, and eager to get their picture taken. Be sure to have fun with it, too, so the personality can really shine through, making for an even better headshot. Choose the most professional yet attractive photo for each employee and write a dazzling description.

Clothing Choices for Your Family Portraits

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So, you’ve decided it’s time to take that family photo you’ve been talking about for so long. You’ve scheduled an appointment with a photographer and your family has set aside time to participate. Now it’s time to start planning what you and your family will wear. Take a look at some of our suggestions on what to do and what to avoid doing when it comes to clothing choices for your family portrait:

  • Dress yourself first – If you’re the one who planned the whole family photo session, you should choose your outfit first. That is, choose something you look and feel good in, and have your family dress themselves accordingly.
  • Create a Color Scheme – Select a couple colors you like or that look good on you and create a color scheme based on your choices. The accent color, or the brightest, should not be overused.
  • Add some personality – You and your family should not all be wearing matching outfits. This idea is outdated and it looks more creepy than welcoming. As previously stated, whoever organized the photo session should dress himself or herself first. The rest of the family should then make their own outfit choices based on what you’ve chosen first to wear. All the outfits should complement each other, while allowing each family member’s unique personality to show. Wearing the same matching clothes takes away from this effect.
  • Location – It is important when considering the colors your family is going to wear to also consider where in the house the family photo will be prominently displayed. Typically, family portraits go somewhere in the living room, either hanging on a wall or on the mantel for everyone to see. It is good practice to coordinate the colors you and your family choose to wear with the color(s) of the room.
  • Accessorize – Accessories help complement outfits, just be sure that the colors of the accessories match with those of your clothes.
  • Layers: Fashion with a Function – Layers are both functional as well as fashionable; they keep you warm and also help you make clothing combinations that look great.

What you wear in the family portrait makes quite the impression on your house guests. You want people to easily recognize your beautiful family, and wearing color-coordinated outfits does the trick. Choose your outfit first, something from which everyone else can build their own outfits.