Happy New Year!!

I had the absolute pleasure of hanging out with my entire family for the past 10 days. This includes all 4 of us, both of my parents plus my sister, her fiancé, and my niece. Boy, did we have a blast! It is so quiet now here at the house.

One of my X-Mas gifts from Jon was a new home studio flash kit. I was giddy beyond words because up until now I had been using make-shift lights clamped onto lamp poles and what not... not a pretty sight, plus it required TONS of post-production work just to get the photos looking halfway decent.

But, of course, as with any new piece of equipment, you have to get the hang of it through lots of trial & error. So, I used my family as "guinea pigs" on New Year's Eve and I wanted to share the progression with you guys. :)

This first photo was completely blown out! I had the lights too close and the aperture too wide open! This is my niece, Asja


In this one, I moved the lights farther apart and I closed the aperture by 1 stop but it is still blown out. This is my niece and my dad.


Brightness was a bit more under control in this photo... but still not perfect. I was also having some problems focusing. This is my sister, Cathy, and her fiancé, Jason.


I LOVE this picture of my parents, even though it is all blown out on the right side and too dark on the left.


This one of my sis and my niece is not too bad, but the focus is still a bit wacky. UGH! I have so far to go!


And finally, the cousins had so much fun posing with grandma. The focus is still wacky and the brightness is off but I still thought it was a fun shot. :)


OK, so that was New Years Eve... soon after that photo session ended, we put the little ones to bed and the adults rang in the new year with some yummy mimosas. The following day, New Years Day, we headed out to a little hill down the street from our house to let the "Floridians" have a try a sledding. Brrrrrrrr... it was 19 degrees out so we were all looking like Eskimos.... especially my sister! LOL!


At first she didn't want to partake in the Winter festivities, but after much teasing from all of us, she finally gave in...


Even my dad went down the hill a few times...


Jon and Jason had the "bright idea" that if they held hands they might be able to sled down the hill while standing up on the disks. They called it "snow surfing"... we called it "Brokeback Sledding" LOL!!!!


It didn't quite work out...


Oh, and yes, Sydney was there too, although she didn't participate in the activities. She just stood back and watched us in disbelief...


And where was I? Behind the camera, of course. ;)

I did get included in this little family pic we took in front of our house... just kidding! This is a house designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, down in Springfield, Il. My dad is a HUGE fan of his, so we thought we would treat him with a tour of one of his house designs. It is gorgeous!


So, that's it! Thanks for bearing with me through my family photo album. I will be drawing a winner soon for the Boutique Cafe interview contest, so stay tuned!

HAPPY NEW YEAR, everyone!


  1. Anonymous1:13 AM

    OMGosh, Patty! You totally look like your mom!

    Great photos! Looks like fun was had by all!

  2. hey lady! I've missed chatting with you ; )

    I agree with Sara - you look just like mom! WOW! I am SO impressed with your photos...what a HUGE difference from your photos before...clarity, color...beautiful - I'd love to know what Jon got for you....

    Happy New yEAR

  3. Thanks for he comments, girls! Yep, I am a total clone of my mom, for sure. :) Kristen, I just emailed you with the info. :)

  4. you have the bestest family--lqtm at the brokeback sledding!

    awesome shots as always, girl.

  5. Dayna3:36 PM

    You CRACK ME UP Patty!!! I say it like the rest of them...you totally resemble your mom....and your mom looks sOOOOO YOUNG!!! No wonder you still look like a teenager!

    You're family is beautiful and so are your photos....stop beeing so hard on yourself! You're an artist!

  6. Congratulations on the fabulous gift from dh Patty. Your photos look fantastic! Ditto to everyone else-you and mom are twinners.

  7. Nic, so glad someone else found humor in that! PHEW! ;) My family definitely has a twisted sense of humor! hee hee

    Dayna... a teenager?! WHOA! Thanks, girl! I wouldn't go that far but I have been told I look to be in my early 20s, which I think is great for someone who is closer to 40 than to 30. ;) I'll take it! :) Must be the Latin blood in me. We like to have a good time and they say laughter keeps you young, right?

    Eva, thanks for stopping by I've missed ya, hun!

  8. I love seeing all the family photos and like everyone else said...you look so much like your mom and she looks so young! :) We got a Nikon D40 for our Christmas and I am so totally interested in this studio flash kit you are blogging about. Jon's birthday is coming up in March and this might be a good gift. We both are pretty interested in getting into photography again!

  9. Amber, thanks for stopping by! The kit I got from Jon is the INT150 by Interfit. I already had other components that I am using alongside it, like my seamless white backdrop that I purchased last year from Adorama and a sheet of plexi for the bottom that I got at Lowes. Not to mention a couple of tripods & lights that I am thinking of incorporating into my set-up. Hope this helps!

    BTW, congrats on the new camera! Have fun with it!!

  10. The pictures are awesome. I just wish I could take some like that. We just bough a Cannon Rebel XT the other day. And are learning about all the settings.


Proudly designed by | mlekoshi Playground |