Rinat Halon

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Archive for 'Family'

The one thing that always happens before a photo shoot – and ALWAYS catches my clients by surprise – is the pre-photo shoot emotional meltdown they experience.

Usually it comes in the form of a text or an email the day before we are scheduled to photograph. My client is asking to reschedule. “The dog ate my homework” laundry list of excuses ranges from “I didn’t get a chance to get my hair done” to “I can’t make it tomorrow because I need an emergency eye surgery”.

When we talk some more, the truth always comes out.

They are scared.

Of course they are scared. Standing in front of a camera is one of the most vulnerable things you could ever do. It also involves trust – trusting the person who is photographing you that they will make you look good.

Not an easy emotional task, that’s for sure. Did you know that the Native Americans did not agree to be photographed? They believed a photograph captured their soul. I can see why they believed that. It kind of does.

As we all know – the camera doesn’t lie. In fact, it pretty much is all about “In your face, truth!”. Facts we like to tell ourselves little white lies about – like “I didn’t gain any weight in the past year”. Or: “I have a full head of hair and there is no bold spot up there”. Or my personal favorite white lie I tell myself: “My teeth are pearly white” – all these stories come crashing into the great wall of reality check before a photo shoot, as our mind realizes that after the photo shoot tomorrow there will be nowhere to hide from the truth any longer.

And so, the logical decision to make is – cancel the photo shoot. Forget it ever happened. And keep living a lie.

Or…

How about we consider what is behind door #2? Yes, it is scary; we don’t know what’s behind it. Yes, it means we will have to face the truth. But – and stay with me here even though you are already so uncomfortable just reading this –

How about you be vulnerable and trust the professional you hired?

To me, being a professional photographer doesn’t just mean I have the best photography equipment. It doesn’t just mean I know how to technically get a perfectly exposed capture.

Being a professional photographer means to me that I know how to capture my clients best self. I know how to bring out the sleeping beauty inside a woman who tells me she is not photogenic or the handsome man under the insecure fellow who walks into my studio.

And if we are photographing on location – in your location – be it your home or office or spaceship – part of my job is to make the space look good for the shoot. Being a professional photographer means to me that I know how to set up your location in a way that compliments the shot – and hides the mess and the dust bunnies – or the spaceship’s peeling paint job.

If you are reading this article, chances are you are one of my clients. So before you pick up the phone to text me that the dog ate your makeup/ tore your tie up and you just can’t make it to the photo shoot – read this carefully.

And remember – part of being a professional photographer means to me that I am here to talk you off the ledge. So if you still need to hear my voice explaining to you why your upcoming photo shoot is going to be one of the best life experiences you have ever had – call me.

I am here for you.

And YES – YOU ARE photogenic!

 

 

 

 

 

Recently I went on a beach getaway. I was walking on the beach, enjoying the beautiful view,  breathing in the smells of the fresh, clean Florida air, and enjoying the moment.

I was listening to the sound of the waves and the sea goals circling over my head when I realized I was hearing different languages spoken around me. I snapped out of my bubble and smiled as I recognized I was walking passed families speaking Russian, Japanese, Spanish and a few other languages I did not recognize. And then it hit me: everyone had a camera in their hands. They were all either taking pictures, or talking about the camera. I could tell some were frustrated; their photos were not turning out the way they envisioned. One couple I walked passed was speaking in English, and I heard the woman complain to the man “the camera is just not good enough”, she said as she sighed in sorrow. I looked the other way, wondering what they were all photographing. There was nothing there except the big blue ocean. The beautiful, living, breathing big blue ocean. The  ocean all these people came to enjoy, and relax, and re-charge by. But they were not doing that. They were all keeping very busy clicking away, and were getting frustrated when they could not seem to be able to capture the essence of the moment.

One of the things I talk about when I teach is when NOT to photograph. In this day and age with the camera equipment is accessible to anyone and everyone, it seems no one is living in the moment any longer. We are either capturing photos to be able to see them in the FUTURE, or looking through photos we captured as we reflect on the PAST. And then we wonder why the NOW, this moment in time, just seems to flee us so quickly.

That morning on the beach, me – the professional photographer – was the only person without a camera in her hands. Of course I brought a camera with me to the beach. But with years of experience and technical knowledge I know when it’s worth it to actually pull out the camera. The camera does not control my life, it’s a tool I control to capture a few special moments that are worthy of my time, energy and thought put into capturing them for prosperity sake.

The rest of the time, I choose to live NOW. And this seems to become a fleeting concept in the past few years since the photography equipment has become affordable and available to all. When we don’t realize is how much this affordable, available, easy to use equipment is costing us in time and energy. Because it’s only a piece of equipment. Think about how an airplane can safely take off and land when it’s in the hands of an experienced pilot in what seems to be a smooth, effortless motion (but we all know very well it is not). A camera follows the same concept. You can whiteness a professional photographer capture a beautiful photograph in what seems to be an effortless motion. But the same camera can become a time and energy sucker, frustrating experience when it’s in your hands if you do not know how to use this tool.

My suggestion? Get busy living life, and not capturing it. When you get somewhere decide to capture only a couple of shots, and then put the camera away. As the pilot says when the airplane takes off: “Sit back – and enjoy the ride!”.

Because that’s what life is about. Here is to a 2017 filled with beautiful, happy, relaxing and energizing NOW moments!

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To find out more about the Photo Coaching for photographers I offer, including the “8 Weeks to Photo Goal! ” program CLICK HERE

 

If you are an amateur photographer who just wants to learn how to get better pictures CONTACT ME for more information about the photography classes I offer

 

For your office staff Photo Team Building activities   CLICK HERE

 

For more information about the best, most fun and thoroughly educational Photo Tours coming up   CLICK HERE

 

To book one of my original, one of a kind entertaining, heart warming Photo Talks   CLICK HERE

 

To see some of the shots I took on Cocoa Beach, and more of my Travel Photography  CLICK HERE

 

 

 

Year round, photography is my profession. I am always thankful for that fact, and that this is how I have been making a living for the past 17 years.
But this time of year is when I reflect on what a miracle this is. Considering the fact that I never wanted to be a photographer. The only reason I took photography in college in the first place was because no other “real” classes were available my first semester in OSU. Who would have guessed that I would fall in love with this craft? That I would be lucky enough to capture life joys for clients in a way that would make them smile from the heart every time they look at these photos? That I would be able to reflect to people through my camera lens how beautiful they truly are, the beauty they just don’t see in themselves. Who would have guessed that I would have a box of tissues ready in my meeting room because every single one of my clients would shed happy tears looking through their wedding album for the first time?
Not me. I would have never guessed. And what I learned so far is that if I have to choose between money and love – I would choose love every single time. Because money can’t manifest love, but love sure can manifest money, and so much more. I am living proof of that, serving clients whom I love, and they love me. Clients who come back year after year allowing me to document for them their life’s milestones. From calming down a nervous young man before he pops the question, as I am there to capture that moment, to the joy of capturing engagement photos, to looking into the eyes of a stressed bride right before she walks down the aisle, holding her hand, and reminding her that her best friend is waiting for her at the end of this walk. And seeing a smile of relief on her face as she realizes I am right.
To sharing the joy of my client’s getting pregnant, and capturing all the wonderful memories of their baby’s first year. To fun holiday family portraits as their family expands.
To creating a photo marketing strategy for clients as they decide to take the plunge and start their small business. To sharing the joy of photography by teaching my clients how to take better pictures as we go on a group photo tour.
To chasing my client’s beloved pets around the studio to capture their pet portrait, to be invited to photograph wedding anniversaries. And birthdays. And high school senior pictures.
And this is just a partial list.

This time of year I feel that I am the luckiest woman in the world. Not having a family of my own at this point in my life, not being able to show off pictures of my children – I am SO proud to show off pictures of YOUR children that I photogrpahed!
I am grateful that I’m invited to witness, be part of, and capture all these incredible life moments you live. Thank you for trusting me with capturing your precious moments.
Becuase, to me – being your photographer, is nothing but a small miracle.
Happy Everything!
With love,
Rinat

Please visit my WEBSITE to see the packages & pricing information for the different photography products and services I offer

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1999, Ohio State University, me in the photography Department women’s bathrooms, first selfi ever!

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I finished the Mcwilliams family portrait in 5 minutes. Really, I was done. That’s what happens when sweet 20 months old Declan could not stop smiling and laughing. We got THE shot in the first 5 minutes of the shoot. After that we were just playing. 

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All Declan wanted to do was laugh – and walk. So we let him do his thing. I like to pose my clients around the situation unfolding, so I asked Anna & Brendan to walk behind Declan as he was racing towards my assistant Courtney who functioned as the safety gate

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Then we came across the pink bunny. And sweet Declan did what was natural for him to do – he stopped and hugged the bunny.

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To finish this shoot off, I asked Anna & Brendan to swing Declan towards me. As I suspected Declan loved it, and we got this fun family shots. I captured Anna & Brendan’s wedding 10 years ago, but these were the first family photos they got with Declan, and it was important to me that these shots would be memorable ones, and was so glad to know we nailed this shoot. I absolutely LOVE that my clients come to me to capture all their life events, and so humbled to be their Forever Photographer. Enjoy your beautiful family Anna & Brendan, so happy to be on the other side of the camera for yet another happy moment in your life!

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To see family portrait session pricing and package options CLICK HERE 

 

One of the questions I get asked a lot is what do you do when a child doesn’t want to have their picture taken? As you can imagine that happened to me more than once or twice in the past 17 years. It happened again this past weekend when two and a half year old Adair was not feeling well on the day of her family portrait session. I assured the family we will get the photos, and got to clicking away. I always say the child’s attention span lasts as long as their height, but when a child is not feeling well the window of opportunity is even smaller. So we started with the most important photo – in this case, the family portrait.

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As soon as I saw we were losing Adair’s attention I asked her older sister, four and a half-year-old Marlow to give her baby sister a hug. That worked, we got some great shots, and the added benefit was that everyone ended up receiving a hug from these two sweeties, including grandma Maureen.

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In a situation like this, I find that the best thing to do is capture fun, interactive moments of the family, to distract the child from the fact they are, indeed, in the midst of a photo session

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The results are fun filled lifestyle family portraits of a happy loving family – and even Lizzie the dog gave us a smile!

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To see family portrait session pricing and package options CLICK HERE

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When is the last time you got something in the mail except bills and ads? I mean, something that really got you excited and made you happy?

I realized that on my last birthday when unexpected greeting cards came in the mail. It made me so happy to open the envelope, and glee with excitement to read these love notes. A couple of cards even made me tear up. And I hung all the cards I received on my pantry door in my kitchen, where they hung for months and months after my actual birthday, reminding me that I am loved.

Honestly, one hand written greeting card made me happier than 300 people posting Happy Birthday on my Facebook wall. Why is that, I wondered.

In this virtual world we live in it seems we all live online, and the hand written word is disappearing quickly. But the value of putting pencil to paper, of someone’s familiar handwriting, the feel and smell of the paper it is written on – that is so valuable. Because that is what makes us human, separates us from a machine, and connects us on a personal level. And all this is lost when using a virtual greeting instead.

Another thing that is lost in a virtual greeting is – the greeting. I mean, how many of you scroll back to see your birthday wishes after your birthday has passed? I am going to venture to guess none of you do that. But if you had a hand written card? Would you throw it out the day after your birthday? Or would it be sitting proudly on your desk for months after you received it?

As a professional photographer I am now preparing for the holiday season coming up sooner than we realize. Starting October I will be busy with capturing family sessions, to ensure I have their portraits ready to be put on holiday cards and mailed out to their loved ones to be received in time for the holidays.  

Because no email or Facebook post will ever replace the feeling you get when you walk to your mailbox and between the bills and junk mail find a hand written envelope addressed to you – and inside it is a card that not only has a beautiful photograph on it of this family you love so much – but also a hand written note, to you, telling you they are thinking about you during this holidays season, and that you are loved.

I am going to bet that you would wallpaper your fridge with these holiday cards! Because they are tangible, and therefore have the ability to make you feel connected with your loved ones no matter how far away they are physically from you. They just send you their essence in this holiday card – and you can feel it.

Happy holiday season everyone!

NOW BOOKING 2016 HOLIDAY PORTRAITS, Contact Rinat to book your holiday portrait session available in the greater Orlando Florida area at 407.607.3297 or http://rinathalon.com/family/

 

 

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