Jan is one of Washington DC’s most sought-after photographers, with a style best described as elegant whimsy. Her vast knowledge of lighting, composure, and posing is rivaled by few professional and fine photographers today. Pair her alluring style with a romantic sensibility and the result is nothing short of astonishingly beautiful photographs, reflecting the true essence of her client’s personality.
Jan earned a degree in Business Administration with a minor in Economics. She later added a degree in Professional Photography. Today, she is a member of The National Association of Photoshop Professionals, The Professional Photographers of America, as well as Wedding and Portrait Photographers International. She is also an enthusiastic world traveler and has a slight addiction to dark chocolate.
After a wedding, a new baby is the most joyful time in the life of a family, and what an honor to be part of documenting with photos such a sweet time! Baby Josh was a week old and a teensy 6 pounds for his newborn portrait session. Such a precious, smiley little guy! I love the picture with his beautiful mama too – he won’t be small enough to hold like that in just a few short weeks!
I’ve also had the privilege of photographing his cousins Savannah and Landon. All are such adorable babies!
I consider myself a “people photographer” which means I love capturing special moments for people from their wedding day to their newborn babies – who then grow and change and need to have their sweet faces captured in print. As part of these portrait sessions I want to show people themselves at their best, preserving special memories for them from that point in time.
A great headshot is an extension of the same idea. Your best self to show the world, from your company website to social media to your spouse’s desk. Recently I enjoyed working with Mary on a new headshot for both business and personal use. Makeup artist, Cameron Tull, and I met Mary at her home in Alexandria and set up a little studio right in her family room. I also often go to client’s offices if they have space to set up there. And with some companies I photograph several employees on the same day. So if you need a new headshot or your company needs to bring a photographer in for new headshots for several people, give me a call (or see more info on headshots here) and I’ll give everyone a portrait they will happily show to the world. Here is the lovely Mary:
Sweet little Quinlan is the youngest of five, but I think she’ll make her presence known. She has a mischievous twinkle in her eye already and is super smiley. At a couple weeks old (a few weeks after the portrait sessions) we’re positive that she’s already grinning in response to talking to her. So adorable! She also wins the prize for the most difficult baby I’ve photographed. Refusing to sleep or waking with any practically any attempt to move her from one pose to another, while at the same time being a pretty laid back baby otherwise. Her mom and I have been friends since childhood so she gave us plenty of time to chat while we waited for her to eat (and eat again) and fall asleep. But it was worth the time. Isn’t she a doll?
Remember those 5¼ floppy disks? And the “modern” update to 3½ hard disks. OK, maybe I’m dating myself, but what would you do if that’s where your wedding images were stored and you needed to see them today?
While having physical possession of digital picture files sounds like a safe way to preserve your images, in reality they are neither permanent nor foolproof. Who knows what type of digital storage devices will come and go in the next few decades. Digital media of all types can and does corrupt. I’m sure we all know someone who has had a hard drive go bad and they lost years of family pictures. But a print will be there in 100 years. So, print, print, print! Of course putting the images in an album is even better, but a shoebox full of prints can still be discovered and enjoyed by your great-grandchildren. A DVD, not so much.
More reasons to print:
A print is tangible. An interactive experience with something tangible is more complex and complete. Looking though a photo album in your lap is very different than on a computer. And a print on your desk or wall can be enjoyed every day. Smiling faces of my nieces and nephews in frames next to my computer and on my walls makes my day so much more enjoyable.
A print is art. There are so many ways to print and display an image. Textures and colors and sizes that all contribute to the enjoyment of that picture. And they make your home a beautiful and warm space, full of life.
A print is a final product. A digital file is only an ingredient.
A print can be a gift. And one that keeps giving as it brings on-going smiles to the faces of the recipients. A digital file, is well, just another computer file.
A print is classic and timeless. It never goes out of style or becomes obsolete. What would you give for an old, well cared for print of your grandparents, or your parents as children?
A print is lasting. A print will be there decades from now. Provided they are printed well – a good reason for professional printing: the paper is thicker, and the colors are accurate and lasting. Where you print matters too. I have carefully selected the professional lab that I use for the quality of the printing.
Holding onto digital files with the idea of using them someday robs you of the enjoyment of those images today and puts you at risk of losing them all together. So, don’t procrastinate. Buy prints (and a wedding album) rather than files from your photographer. It’s the wisest investment.
And don’t neglect printing your own candids, this doesn’t apply only to professional images. Social media should not be the final resting place for your images. Sometimes as I see parents constantly snapping and posting phone pictures I wonder most children will have to rely on their parent’s Facebook accounts to see any pictures of their childhood. There are many apps available to help you move pictures from your phone to photo paper (preferably without filters or at least in natural colors for a more timeless look).
And may I also put a plug in for buying a camera as well. Professional pictures are wonderful, but there’s no substitute for having a camera on hand for the moments of life that happen in between photo shoots. Our brains remember what we see pictures of, so your family memories will be very reliant on your documented history.
The bottom line is – think long term and print your images rather than holding onto digital files (which you can do, but knowing that some day they will probably be gone). So take those pictures and print them! Make it your resolution for 2015!
Here are two pictures on my desk that inspire me while I type – a favorite candid of London (with a look I see often but can’t get a two year old to produce on demand, so I’m so glad I had my camera handy while Grandpa was blowing bubbles) and a more intentional portrait of the siblings, both from last summer.
I always enjoy meeting couples who are getting married elsewhere but want to capture their dating relationship in Washington, DC. I am both thrilled that they are making it a priority to document this amazing time as they plan to spend the rest of their lives together, and honored to be the one to create the images that they will enjoy for a lifetime.
It was a little chilly, but Angela and Josh were not deterred and I’m so glad they were game. They are a gorgeous couple and so sweet together. I had so much fun spending a little time with them. My goal is to make the session painless and surprisingly enjoyable for those (usually guys) who are dreading being in front of the camera. So, I’m glad they had fun too! They will be getting married soon before Josh deploys again. Congratulations Angela and Josh!