Date archive: September 2013

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{Nancy Poole Family Photos}

No cowboy was ever faster on the draw than a grandparent pulling a baby picture out of a wallet.
~Author Unknown


Machado Photography sells quite a few photo sessions gift certificates, often as baby shower gifts and as anniversary presents, but a new niche appeared recently. When some of Nancy’s co-workers came to us to pre-purchase a session as a retirement gift. What a great idea! Such a personal touch, much better than the gold watch or wooden plaque that is commonly given!

It didn’t take long for the recipient, Nancy Poole, to get in touch with me to book a date. She wanted to do a family booking with her husband, their two kids and four grandkids. The setting wasn’t hard to come up with; a 5 year old, 6 year old twins and a 7 year old. We decided to set the grandkids loose in their natural habitat! Off to Bechtel Park we went!

While the kids & grandkids played, I snapped away with fantastic results! Another bonus of a playground location for a big family session is that we can break down the group and do portraits of each individual family and the other kids can carry on playing…no bored kids losing interest in what’s going on!

A retirement gift that led to a day of family fun, a successful afternoon of shooting, great portraits of everyone and memories that will last forever!


Tip for your next photo session with Machado Photography:
Consider a session with the backdrop being a place that you and your family frequent. It adds extra elements of familiarity and personalization to your photos. At Machado Photography, we are always prepared with many options of where to go for your shoot, but we are more than excited to hear your ideas! We’re open to finding new, scenic locations!

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{HeadShots}

First impressions matter and your cover photo sends a strong message about who you are. Make sure you have a professional looking photo to compliment your profile. Avoid any casual circumstance pictures from a party, wedding or any other group shots for that matter. And the worst thing you can do is have no cover photo at all which screams you don’t care about your profile and professional appearance.”
-from “5 Tips to Make Your LinkedIn Profile Irresistible” By  

This is the age of technology. Using online forums such as LinkedIn to get yourself out there for job searches and to make business contacts is pretty much the industry standard and online profiles are not optional, they are required. This creates an interesting situation for many job-seekers, as studies have shown that a business profile with a photo is SEVEN TIMES more likely to be viewed by potential employers than a profile without a photo.

Take a second to look into it; go online and search “Should I include a photo on my business profile?” The answer may surprise you, but it doesn’t surprise me. Machado Photography has been getting more and more requests for professional head shots. Everyone knows that models and actors need a portfolio, but nowadays, so does anyone else looking to move up in their career.

If you took a moment do the search I mentioned, you’ll see all sorts of articles about the biggest mistakes that you can make when choosing which photo to use, as well as the mantra “use a professional photo” repeated in every article. Sites such as LinkedIn are your access to professional contacts and potential employers; think of your photo as how you would represent yourself at a job interview.

On the other hand, we do believe it’s important to let yourself come out of the photos. You can still have fun and creative looking professional head shots. 

When Latif came to Machado Photography for his head shot portfolio, we did the job right! We encouraged Latif to bring a few changes of clothes and we used a few different settings to mix things up. The end result is a great variation of moods created, from serious to more casual, but all very professional looking. He now has a wide variety of portraits to choose from; he can update his photo on his profiles depending on the situation. He can use the pictures on his business cards as well. 

Invest in professional shots, a minimal investment that will reap maximum rewards. Contact Machado Photography today to set up your appointment.

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{Some more of Machado Photography’s Head Shots}

 {Shannon’s Head Shots}

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{Breanne Head Shots}

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 {Michael Stark Head Shots}

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{Annette Blake Head Shots }

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{Frenzi – 1st Annual Cut-A-Thon for HopeSpring Cancer Support}

One of the greatest things about being my own boss is that I get asked to donate my time and talent to some wonderful causes that I truly believe in.
One of the causes that I’m passionate about is fundraising for cancer charities.

On February 12, 2012, my Grandmother, Sandy Machado, passed away at the age of 76 after a long and valiant battle against lung cancer.  Although she was a nurse (and a fantastic one at that), her vice was smoking, at a time when pretty much everyone smoked. When I was in high school, I convinced her to take on babysitting my guidance counselor’s son, knowing that if she had a little one around she would have to give up the smoking. It worked, but years of her habit had already done damage. My Grandmother essentially raised me, she’s the one who encouraged me to pursue my dreams. If not for her, I would not be the person I am today. I think of her and miss her every day.

That’s part of the reason that I jumped at the chance when the wonderful team at Frenzi asked me to come out and document their 1st Annual Cut-A-Thon for HopeSpring Cancer Support Centre  fundraiser (more like FUN-raiser with that group!).

The supporters came out in droves, making generous donations to the cause in exchange for stylin’ haircuts! Folks came for everything from just a little trim to full-blown-chop-it-all-off cuts! One client even had her 14 inch braids dramatically cut off; that’s what I call a makeover!

I think having an amazing DJ from DazzleDynasty Music Entertainment helped draw people in, too! Perfect sounds to go with the action!
By the end of the event, the team raised $1200 for Hopespring Cancer Support Center, plus the staff decided to donate all of their tips (over $300) to the Pediatric Oncology Center at McMaster. Amazing!
Thanks to Frenzi for asking me to be part of this awesome event, and thanks for my gorgeous new haircut!

 

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{ In Memory of My Grandma Sandy<3 }
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Fall is on it’s way!!!

“Fall colors are funny. They’re so bright and intense and beautiful. It’s like nature is trying to fill you up with color, to saturate you so you can stockpile it before winter turns everything muted and dreary.”
― Siobhan Vivian,

Ah, the imagery of Autumn!

So many folks seem to forget about what a beautiful backdrop the colourful fall leaves can make for their family portraits! The rich colours of the trees can be quite dramatic against the deep grey or crisp blue of the sky.

 

There’s so much opportunity for outdoor fun! Big kids and little kids love jumping in big, crunchy leaf piles…how’s that for a great photo!?!

 

My cousin Melissa could choose any season she wanted for photos and I was super excited to do a photo session with my family, so she gathered everyone on a splendid afternoon in late autumn and we had a blast!

 

There are lots of great props that fit in with an autumn theme too. For this shoot my cousin Melissa and her husband Nick incorporated a toy tractor, which would have been lost in the green grass of summer, but stood out in the dried leaves on the ground at this time of year. Animal print clothing is a great and trendy choice for a fall shoot…colourful scarves look great too!

 

I’ve done pumpkin patch family shoots as well, and they’re an interesting and remarkable setting that wouldn’t work in the other seasons. Or consider a corn maze with 8 foot stalks of corn, hay bales and scarecrows.
And what else happens in the autumn? Halloween!!!

 

Machado Photography will be setting up a spooky haunted house for some eerie Halloween portraits for Saturday October the 12th! If you’re interested in capturing your favourite ghost, ghoul, goblin or witch on film, contact us to set up a booking!
Hand in hand with the changing leaves is the beginning of the school year, which is another great excuse to book an autumn session with Machado Photography; mark the kids’ returning to class with an annual photo shoot.
Start thinking outside the box! Book your Fall Family Photo Shoot before the snow starts to fly!
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{Reis Family Photos}

“I may not always be with you
But when we’re far apart
Remember you will be with me
Right inside my heart”
― Marc Wambolt,

 

The Reis Family photo shoot was worth the wait!

When Machado Photography donated a gift card for a family photo shoot to a Cancer Fundraiser, we got an email from the lucky winner, Cathy, asking us to come out and take some pictures of her husband Alex’s family when they came to Canada from Brazil.

Unfortunately, the family had some issues with their travel visas and couldn’t get here. But a year later, we got another email telling us that the issues were resolved (hooray!) and the in-laws were on the way!

I seem to always have the luck of great weather on my side when I have an outdoor shoot booked, and this day was no different. It was like the Canadian weather had something to prove to our Brazilian guests!

With such a great group, we were able to switch up the dynamics to get wonderful photos of the family. Alex and Cathy wanted to have a lot of focus on little Maya and her grandmother, Ozelita; there is such a beautiful contrast between the generations! Ozelita had met her grand-daughter once before, when Alex, Cathy & Maya went to Brazil in 2011, but as everyone knows, a child can change A LOT in a very short time!  Interestingly, they both have the same sparkle in their eyes!

Maya definitely stole the show! Between giggles she demonstrated yoga poses and tried to teach us how to copy them. I think she was more than a little bit motivated by the promise of a treat when the session was over…a delicious lollipop! I love working with kids; they have such boundless energy and I’m always amazed at how they have such a developed sense of humour.

The Reis family now has a beautiful album to remember their summer visitors, and Alex’s mother Ozelita, brother Edison and sister Patricia have amazing souvenir photos to take back home to Brazil.

A family portrait can go beyond a Mom, a Dad and their kids. It’s a shame when people go through all of the work, effort and expense of planning family reunions and/or gatherings, yet they don’t think to get a photographer to come and document their wonderful memories! Let the professionals at Machado Photography take the pictures so that you can relax and enjoy time with your family but still have the tangible memories for the rest of your life!

 

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{Mesar Family Photos}

I have worked hard on creating a cozy, multi-functional studio that acts as the perfect setting for many of the photo sessions that we do at Machado Photography. That being said, it’s wonderful to get out there in the sunshine and fresh air and get shooting!

 

I recently had the chance to go over to Victoria Park with the Mesar family on a beautiful day in August where I took hundreds of pictures! We started out with a nice little picnic set-up, with a basket and blanket. The session was going well, but little Mia was a bit shy and a tad distracted, so we decided to loosen things up and do some fun and candid pics.

 

Mom Jennifer and Dad Alex livened things up with play time, piggy backs and human swingsets; Mia started to get comfortable with me and my camera. We set Mia up with some props, but I quickly realized that the absolute best pics would be the un-posed, candid ones, so Jennifer &  Alex broke out the bubble machine…what a stroke of genius they had, bringing that with them! The bubble pictures capture what childhood is all about! Wonderment, excitement, joy, laughter; it’s all there on Mia’s face! I love the effect of the unfocused bubbles and Mia’s ear-to-ear smile as she reaches out for them!

 

Once I was certain that I had some amazing shots of Mia, we went to the pavilion in the park and took some lovely, somewhat more traditional family portraits. Turns out Mia has quite the sense of humour! Once she started giggling, I couldn’t stop taking pictures because each one was turning out amazing!

 

The morning was so much fun that all of a sudden it was over 650 pictures later and the session was done! The hardest part of this shoot will be when the Mesars will have to decide which pictures they want to frame, because there are so many fantastic ones!
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{Babies} Ana & Ben

BABIES!!!
“There’s really nothing quite so sweet
as tiny little baby’s feet.”
                          -author unknown

 

I freely admit to being one of those people who melts every time there’s a baby in the room! Those teeny toes, wrinkled little fingers, dimpled elbows and knees, chubby cheeks, long eyelashes, pursed lips…awwww! I can’t help it!

 

Any parent will tell you that those baby months fly by; before long it’s first tooth, first word, first steps,  first birthday…and then it’s hard to imagine that your child was ever tiny enough to fit into that adorable baby outfit that you picked out especially for their trip home from the hospital. And when you’re all weepy sending your little one off for his first day of school, you’ll be nostalgic for those first months. Won’t you be glad you have all of those beautiful pictures from their first photo session?

 

Most parents take lots of snapshots, but there’s definitely a difference with professional photography. I love to get the close-up details of those toes, of that button nose! I love capturing the emotion and the love of the new parents with their little one. I love sleeping babies, smiling babies, pouting babies and you can’t discount crying babies! They all cry, and I’ve gotten some sweet photos of a baby with a giant tear rolling down her cheek!

 

I’ve learned a lot of little tricks over the years to get the best out of baby’s photo session: how to make them smile, how to make them comfy, how keeping them cozy and warm will make them instantly sleepy!  I encourage folks to bring a favourite outfit or 2, baby’s cutest toy, essential blankie or any other special accessories they’d like to incorporate. Parents can find a treasure trove of cute knit hats and tutus on Etsy! We do have a great selection of props in studio (see the awesome squirrel and tree trunk below!) but it’s nice to include personal memories too!

 

  And if you know an expectant mom, a photo session makes an amazing baby shower gift! It’s a gift that will literally last a lifetime! That’s what Shannon Thompson and Lancaster Smokehouse did for Sonya and Val. Check out newborns Ana & Ben:)

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