Happy Birthday, Eddy. Photography Throwback


Before I closed my old Facebook account, I tried to salvage some of my photographs. Unfortunately, the compression of the images were compromised greatly and so some of my favourite images are less sharp than I’d like.  In fact, some are rather pixelated.

Eddy was born a full two weeks after my little buddy, Keagan, was born. His mom — my sister — attended Keagan’s birth, and I in return attended Eddy’s birth. Both were brought into the world in a birthing pool. Yay for BC Midwifes being trained amazingly in births and for BC Medical for covering it!

Happy 2nd Birthday, Eddy! 

Eddy 3

Licking his hoody while strapped into a Mei Tai carrier.


Trying to avoid a nap at Aunty Kelly’s house

Eddy smirking at Uncle Tyler

Big old grin at Uncle Tyler


Watching the small hockey players intently!


PORTRAIT Photographers of the Comox Valley… Round One

There are a few photographers that have presence in the Comox Valley. I’d like to share a few notable ones with you. After all, as a photographer, we all share different visions. As a potential client, you should see all photographers out there and find the one that best suits your personal vision.

There are dozens of photographers in the Comox Valley. Dozens! I’ll help you see who’s out there and give you some samples of their work. Loving Baby Ventures’ photography won’t be included in these posts.

Tracy Russell Photography
Location of photographer: Comox, BC

Tracy does some amazing photos and is pretty good with Photoshop. She can manipulate images into beautiful art work. She uses many props, especially with newborns, and utilizes many professional techniques in order to get the best squishy baby poses. She likes to soften the look of her images as you can see in the photos below. This is good for people that love that butter soft look. Relaxing and calm. 


Tracy Russell‘s Recent Work


Siblings Captured by Tracy

Check her out on facebook. Click “Like” on facebook and you will get cute pictures like these in your news feed almost daily. I love it :)


Trina Carey Photography
Location of photographer: Courtenay, BC

Trina’s best works are her boudoir photos. She has a keen eye for good framing of the photos and composes them well. Her focusing is spot-on, and her clients always look like they feel great, which is super important.

She does work with maternity, engagement, children, babies, delivery, and so forth, but I feel her strength is in adults and boudoir.


Trina on facebook. Trina Carey Photography’s website.


Graeme Ellis Photography
Location of photographer: Courtenay, BC 

Graeme has an array of styles. Meaning that he has not honed his own style just yet, so his consistency is all over the place in terms of his creative output (Must be a long lost brother of myself! I don’t have a signature style, either). Not necessarily a bad thing unless you have a certain look in mind.  He gets some amazing shots:

Check out his website at http://www.graemeellis.com
Join his Facebook page here! 


Crystal Clear Photography
Location of photographer: Cumberland, BC

She definitely has a niche in children’s and wedding photography here in the Valley. Crystal Clear is pretty well known. I first heard of her while attending a midwife appointment in Courtenay. I won’t say much as her work speaks for itself!

Cute little bunny by Crystal Clear Photography

See her facebook page here.
And Crystal Clear Photography’s website here



When is the Best Time to Take Your Newborn’s Photo?


Three Days Old

When is the best time to take your newborn baby’s photograph? The best timing is between the first few days of life and before the second week. During the second week of life, babies tend to suffer from baby acne as their glands begin to become active and produce oils and sweat. This usually leads to blocked pores… Something almost all babies suffer from.

Physiological jaundice is something most babies suffer from as well. This is what occurs when the abundance of blood cells that babies are born with begin to break down, causing an increase of bilirubin in the body, creating a yellowing affect on the skin and eyes.

Before babies are born, their bodies prepare by producing an abundance of blood cells. This helps prepare them for birth and survival. This added nutrients helps the babies survive without eating immediately post partum. My son, for example, had no interest in eating until he was close to 24 hours old and this is apparently normal and considered healthy as long as they eat shortly thereafter.


Snoozing on the couch

After they are born, these extra blood cells have to be disposed of and as mentioned above, the bilirubin levels raise in the body and often cause jaundice (the yellowing that we see in newborn babies for a few days or weeks).

My son didn’t get much jaundice, which is a little odd because we delayed his cord clamping and thus he had roughly 25% more blood volume. Healthy buddy

keagan-nubeAside from these aesthetic reasons for the time frame of a few days to a few weeks, newborns are much easier to get into a deep sleep within the first fourteen days of life. This sleepiness makes it easy to pose the baby into curled up poses and easier to capture the sleepy, cuddly aura.

A nice warm room, lots of patience, a full belly, and a squishy newborn are all you really need.

There are a handful of Comox Valley newborn portrait photographers. With each photographer, there is a different style, so make sure you view their portfolios and find one that best suits your desires. Keep in mind that photographers will capture your baby in a way that they like because it is their vision you are paying for. This is why I stress that it’s important that you find the photographer that best shares your view!

New Trend: Birth Photography

In the world of moms and dads, a new trend has been appearing: Birth photography. While some adults are confused by the idea, stating that “birth isn’t pretty…” Others are raving at the thought.

Why not capture a pivotal moment? If you get the right photographer, you can capture some beautiful moments. Love, trust, fear… Whatever you might experience.

I have a few shots from other photographers I would love to share with you. First, from Lynsey Stone Photography – a woman whose work I admire so much I’m almost jealous!

Take a look at this parking lot birth captured by a hired photographer. Apparently these photos went viral when they were first released, but still… Amazing.

Photo Credit: Emily Robinson http://emilyrobinsonphoto.com/

Photo Credit: Emily Robinson http://emilyrobinsonphoto.com/


I had some pictures taken with my last birth, however, even though I had my tripod setup with my preferred camera settings, all of my support team simply forgot to take pictures. Woops! So we had a few pictures from directly afterwards as I held my son against my chest, still comfortably sitting in the birth tub. Little Keagan barely cried after his calm yet intense and speedy entrance into the world. Of course the pictures aren’t flattering, but they capture an amazing moment regardless.

birth-share squishy-baby


My favourite part aside from the squishy baby is the amount of dilation in the pupils. Pure adrenalin and oxytocin surge. Not even the four bright, 100 watt light bulbs overhead could cause those pupils to constrict.

Two weeks and four hours later, my nephew was brought into this world in my sister’s home. I was there to photograph the birth for her, though I only had a 50 mm lens and my newborn strapped to me in a moby wrap. I took what I could, but this is one of my favourites of them all:

My brother-in-law holding his third born son. Moments later, the two older sons awoke from their sleep and came to check out the noise of baby Eddy crying.

My brother-in-law holding his third born son. Moments later, the two older sons awoke from their sleep and came to check out the noise of baby Eddy crying.

I have more photos from my sister’s birth, but I will not share them online. They are, however, in my photography portfolio :) I may do a mini post with them at a later date once I sit down with my sister and get the “Okay!”

Flashbacks : My Youngest as a Newborn

When I was a few months pregnant with my youngest, I was finally able to invest in a digital SLR camera. I used to play around with my 35 mm SLR, but the hobby became too expensive with the film development, printing, and driving to and from photo labs.

When I first got my camera, I was a newbie. Total newbie. I took some awful photographs. Awful. haha But trial and error is a great way to grow.

When my son was first born, I took the time to try and recreate some baby poses that I had seen blasted all through the Internet. Unfortunately, back then I had limited lighting, no flash, and a lonely old 50 mm f1/.8 lens. I also had weak muscles and was severely low in iron, so my “photo sessions” with my son were pretty darn quick!

I digress…

Newborn in Crib

In my daughter’s doll crib… hehe

If I could turn back time… I’d move the crib parallel to the light source and move myself so that the angle isn’t so awkward. Straighten out the brown blanket I had used as the floor, then maybe position the little sir a little differently. Looks a little too squished. I was learning.


One week old. La-Z-boy recliner, pillow, and a fuzzy blanket used to create a soft support for baby.

I wanted to get a picture of him lifting his head up. Both my kids were early head lifters — lifting straight up at just a day or two old. This shot was taken in between head lifts. It looks like he’s snoozing, but he is wide awake here. Unfortunately, the photos that I took where his head is raised, he has a dog’s nose smooshed against him as our dog Charlie worked his love into the pictures.

Do you have any “attempted” portraits from when your children were newborns? If you do, please share!


A Look at Focal Length, DoF, Point of Focus… Also, Gold River

Point of focus and depth of field work together to create a strong subject point in most photography. Depth of field can be shallow or deep, yet when paired with an altered point of focus, the field appears larger or smaller. Your point of focus is the centre of focus and the depth of field is how much area surrounding that focus point–be it in front or behind–is in focus or is blurred.

Shallower depth of fields are often used to create a “Bokeh” effect. Remember that the depth of field is related to your aperture setting (f-stop) and as such, the lower your number, the lower the depth of field, the more light will be in your photographs. The larger the depth of field, the larger the f-stop, the less light will get in.

Depth of field is also altered by the focal length of the lens that you are using. The longer the lens or the higher the focal length, the shallower the depth of field will be… Even if you are using the same aperture setting!

Observe the following photographs, taken in Gold River at a “Sight Stop.” Each photo is taken with a 50 mm lens at f/3.2 and 1/800 sec with ISO-100:


This photograph shows a focal point half-way across the bridge and a moderately shallow depth of field. Focal length: 50 mm.


This photograph shows a focal point at the beginning of the bridge, yet the depth of field is again moderately shallow, though it appears more shallow because of the altered focal point.



Again, same settings, but this time the focal point is distal to the lens. In other words, the point of focus is the far side of the bridge. The depth of field seems less shallow than the second photograph above, but it is actually the same setting, just an altered point of focus.

And just for entertainment purposes, I took this picture while messing around. It gives me a feeling of impending doom, so I thought I would share the vertigo experience:

Ack! HANG ON, WE'RE FALLING!!! Thanks for a wonderful weekend, Gold River :)

Ack! HANG ON, WE’RE FALLING!!! Thanks for a wonderful weekend, Gold River :)


Weather lookout for this week in the Comox Valley

Tomorrow, Tuesday the 9th we are expected to have 14 hours of sunshine, making the daylong and hot! Make sure to set up for pictures in the early morning or late in the evening so as to avoid direct sunlight brightening your pictures and reflecting off objects, creating harsh lighting.

The temperature averages 20 degrees all week, making it a perfect summer week for photographs with summer outfits. Cute sundresses, shorts, and swimsuits are definitely called for!

If you are new to the Valley, check out the beach at Kye Bay in Comox. It has bathrooms, picnic tables, a playground, and lots of sandy beach.


Current projects – summer photography outfits

I’m currently working on weekly updates with mash ups of summer styled outfits perfect for family, couple, and children portraits. The outfits I feature will include clothing from local stores here in the comox valley.

There are a few local shops downtown on fifth street that have fashionable clothing perfect for portraits. Muted colours with accents to highlight your eyes or your hair. Subtle details so as to not overpower the picture, and various cuts and fits to highlight your physique.

Stay tuned! These weekly outfits will be hitting your computer screen Wednesdays!


Whether the Weather

As you may have noticed, the wether in the valley has been… Wet. The sun is poking through, the nights are cool, the clouds abundant. Summer has forgotten itself and sent its friend, autumn.

That said, the mini photo sessions scheduled this past Tuesday are being rescheduled for another day. I am awaiting clearer weather.

In the mean time, I am on the lookout for pregnant couples, women, young siblings, and newborns for promotional photo shoots. More information to come!

Some Entertainment… Do You Know How to Take Glamour Shots?

A friend of mine posted a link to this on Facebook. I had a good chuckle from a few of the tips and breathed heavily out of my nose for others.


Tip: Don’t follow the above tips. The best photographs are the ones you’re not posing for. Be natural, let your laugh out, dance like no one’s watching, cry (kids: This one’s for you), and have fun.