The ActiveMama family recently did our annual photoshoot with Sarah Jane Photography, who has been taking our photos for a few years now.
We went down to Shipbuilder’s Square at the foot of Lonsdale again, since we found last year that it had the perfect mix of backdrops for our photos. It’s not busy, it has an urban feel, the view is great and there are no distractions (like parks or bodies of water) that cause whiny kids! While I really wanted to hit up a forested area, it’s so hard to find the right light in the shade of the trees.
I couldn’t be more happy with the photos this year! Sarah did a great job capturing the kids in the chilly wind before they got too grumpy. Damien has some dermatitis on his face right now, which is worse in the cold, but Sarah did a good job clearing that out of the proofs. Thanks Sarah!
Check out all our photos here.
October is the time of year when I start to plan ahead for the Holiday season for our family: buying gifts, having our photo taken, and planning our holiday cards. One of our first holiday cards featured a family photo we took at the pumpkin patch as the colours and lighting at this time of year make for great photo cards. Last year, we made up our holiday cards with one of the great designs from the Minted Christmas Card Collection with the photos taken by Sarah Jane Photography. We’ll be doing the same thing this year.
I have been making photo cards since Aiden was born, starting with his birth announcement and our first family photo card. I have used several services for photo cards (4 in total) and each year I spend many hours trying to find a design that I think is both tasteful and unique. You really don’t want to know how many hours I spent last year looking at dozens of services before our photographer mentioned Minted!
I loved that the site offers hundreds of designs with an incredible amount of customization options: number of photos, colours, shapes, flat or folded, type of paper, matching envelopes, or postcard format. All of their cards are printed on card stock, which makes them stand out a little more from the standard photo paper. The prices were comparable, but no other company offered the same fresh designs that I was seeing at Minted. Here’s the card we created for 2012, which had a custom holiday message on the back in postcard-format.
We used the Wish Banner design for our holiday card. While I was placing the order, I (finally) got around to making Damien’s birth announcement card (which I sent with the holiday cards) and also made 3 calendars featuring photos of our boys for gifts for the family. The calendars come in a variety of sizes (I used a larger spiral bound one that would hang well on the fridge) and you can customize not only images but dates too! I was able to add in personalized dates such as birthdays and anniversaries!
Whether you’re doing family photo cards or just want to send out something with some flair, Minted offers some great inspiration boards to get you planning! I love the idea of mixing up some holiday accent photos in with the family photos like this card – I may have to try that for this year!
I hope this post inspires you to be creative with your holiday cards and gifts!
Disclosure: I received some Minted credit in exchange for this post, though the opinions are my own. I actually had “Review Minted” up on my Editorial calendar for a long time, but time just got away from me and I missed the window of relevance for last year!
We met with Sarah again for some more wonderful family portraits this November. My goal was to get some family photos that we could frame on our wall, as soon as Damien could sit. Well, he began solidly sitting just a couple of days before our photoshoot!
Despite the fact that Aiden was less-than-cooperative during the shoot (he was very tired and very much a 3-year-old), Sarah managed to capture some beautiful moments with our family. We did the photoshoot down by the Shipbuilders Yard in North Vancouver, doing some outdoor shots in the sun and also some indoor shots, since I wanted some sweater-free poses of the boys for our wall. I can’t wait to see how they look framed!
I see you're doing some art...
Come now, show me what you can do!
No no, don't look at the camera! Paint, darn you, I'm watching!
That's more like it! That looks interesting...
-Aiden, hard at work-
Look at that use of purple!
-Aiden applies the purple-
Hmm, I'm not sure about that use of yellow...
I think it could use a little extra something...
Rocks used to paint. I am humbled by your genius.
When little Damien was 12 days over, Sarah of SarahJane Photography, came over to our house for a newborn photo session (and Nicole of Mary Kay came to do my make-up!). I’d actually won a shoot with another photographer, but decided to pass on it since we were so happy with our family portraits while I was pregnant. By the time Aiden was a dozen days old, we had set up several home photoshoots; the reality of two kids is that there are fewer opportunities to take photos. With that in mind, we wanted to make Damien’s memories just as special as Aiden’s. In this case, Damien won out – with the help of a pro, we have some truly amazing photos!
It took Damien about 2 hours to fall asleep, even though he’d been awake for an hour by the time Sarah arrived. Bit of a fail there. Since Damien was diaper free, you can imagine just how many accidents there were during this time period (and they mostly landed on me – gross). Anyway, once Damien was finally asleep, we captured some beautiful moments. He was amazingly pliable once he fell asleep and had a massive nap after the shoot finished.
We bribed Aiden with a bag of candy to participate in a few of the photos (he really didn’t want to participate). Mexx should pay us for this photo of him:
See all the photos here.