2015 The Year that Flies [...]

ROADTRIP-1.jpg

Our Best Year Ever! Is it us or do you think that the days are flying by since the New Year began? The more we procrastinate (a new year's resolution I made and said I would not do in 2016!) another month has flown, literally, by us. We have tried so hard to keep on top of things, but we are still coming down from the high we have been on since year end! 2015 was our BEST YEAR ever! SweetShot Photography has been in business since 2007 and we keep growing stronger year after year!  Finding our niche in the commercial and event photography arena, and stepping out of the portraiture field, we have grown leaps and bounds.

A Photo Re-cap of 2015 - Food Photography as always a picture is worth a thousand words. We would like to share some of our food styling images with you in a collage.

Food collage

 Great Restaurant Fare is always paired with great beverage. Our restaurant clients' are 5 star restaurants, all having exclusive wine lists and exquisite wines and unique cocktails. Here is a sample of that.

beverage collage

Portraiture

beauty-review.jpg

Although we have moved away from headshots and portraiture we still get many requests for our photography of both. We just completed a family portrait session and a last minute senior portrait session. Here is some of the results. Portraits

Circa 1815 an Anniversary

200-year-anniversary.jpg

200 Year Celebration-Liberty Hill from SweetShot photography on Vimeo.

As event photographers, we have been called on to photograph some pretty amazing events over the past ten (10) years. From these events we have branched out to make different niches in a very fickle and over saturated industry. From photo booths to bus tours for political candidates, restaurants and catered events and everything in between we keep coming back to doing what we are passionate about the most, food and food styling photography and real estate.  When we were hired to photograph a historic homes tour in a quintessential New England town in New Hampshire, we were elated. This particular home was on the tour and was the celebration day of it's 200th anniversary.

The home is owned by a builder-remodeler, Greg Rehm with his wife Annie and two daughters Marley and Kate and typical of New Hampshire families, 14 year old yellow lab Marcus who was on hand to pose for some of the interior shots! Greg has been remodeling their home for some time now. A work in project, and like the "cobblers son" hasn't yet been able to complete his vision for Liberty Hill because he is a very successful contractor in much demand in his hometown. What he has created with his old world craftsmanship is in this video. Gregs' company Liberty Hill Construction in Bedford New Hampshire has been appropriately named for the Circa 1815 home they live in in this video sitting on Liberty Hill!

Not your Fathers' Car

Did the cover photo catch your attention? Did you want to click on the image to see what it was about? I bet the majority of hits were from the men! This is an example of how good imagery can create engagement on your blog or on social media. The images of the car below were taken by SweetShot for our client who wanted to sell his 2005 Mazda 6 with high mileage but in immaculate condition quickly. He wanted to take cell phone shots to post to Craigs List and we advised him that if he wanted to get this sold fast let us photograph it and if he sold it quickly we would take a percentage of the sale!

How photos of the Mazda 6 were shot

Photos were taken as they would at a dealership. Angle, color, interior and under the hood. The images below are just a few that were used in a non zealous, no Used Car Salesman approach as a Facebook post. Within two hours of the post, our client had several calls to look at the car and two test drives. Within in 2 days of the post it was sold for asking price! No Craigs' List necessary.

Photography is an important part of engagement on social media and for serious bloggers.

Stock photography that you download from the internet are good, but not as good as you can do yourself! Yes, you can, I promise! You don't need to be a professional and you don't have to be good at your cell phone camera. Purchase a point and shoot camera and go out and practice. Yes it would be great to hire me, but you can do just as good with half the equipment I own!

 Go out and photograph something that has something to do with your business or if you are a serious blogger...your blog.

Focus on the subject and look at it in different angles and lights. Have fun with it. Then download all of the photos you shot and you may be pleasantly surprised. That  image of that cupcake you just baked would make a perfect shot for your next blog post. You  grabbed your little camera and started shooting. That cupcake you just took 50 photos of and downloaded to your computer to just "see" were perfect! Better looking in fact,  than some of the food stylists on Pinterest that you are always pinning for ideas! Before you know it you are selling more cupcakes than you can bake. Like the car, never in his wildest dreams did he think he would get almost full asking price on a ten year old car with over 220,000 miles on it and touches of rust here and there! Don't let the mileage fool you! Just shoot!

 

COLLAGE

 

White after Labor Day?

White Not!

White after Labor Day and before Memorial Day, Winter White in winter,  white not? Host a beautiful all white dinner party with all  guests required to wear white attire. Serve end of summer favorites like seared tuna, New England scallops, baby Quail and pour lots of white champagne. Top off with a decadent dessert and Tito's Vodka in a Moscow Mule mug. What a delightful way to end the summer before the unofficial end of summer (Labor Day). White is beautiful any time of the year!

White Not? Rules were meant to be broken!

All images were shot at the Copper Door , forty-five minutes outside of the Boston area in historic Bedford, New Hampshire.

What's in your Garden > READ MORE

The garden started out a bit slow. The construction of the raised garden with seven beds and an open area for fruit like zucchini that like to spread, took five weekends to complete. Constructed in all natural cedar (a bit more money than pine and must be untreated) the construction of the site where the garden was being placed became a challenge at best! We prevailed and by the middle of June, two days before the official first day of summer on the 21st, we had a raised garden. We waited a week before planting seedlings to let the soil cultivate. Then the seedlings went in! Cukes, green and yellow beans, eggplant (white and purple), kale, swiss chard, bib and red lettuce, beets(!), bell peppers and tomatoes. In the smaller raised beds we planted herbs. We have harvested the cucumbers so many times we made dill pickles, the beets we pickled too. The herbs were harvested three times. Parsley, sweet basil, lemon balm, sage and chives, all flourishing. Disappointing is the tomatoes, green beans  and eggplant. They are coming in now, but with no robust.

As the images below show, the beets, peppers and some tomatoes did really well! Now I will go out and harvest some of the others and practice my food styling and photography on the fruits of our labor!

 

All about the berries

Blueberry-Pie-oh-my.png

Blueberry (1) Love summertime, love the berries. The strawberries, the raspberries the blueberries. All make delicious summertime pies and desserts.  We picked 4 quarts of blueberries at the farm nearby, and decided it was time to take out the old Martha Stewart recipe book for homemade blueberry pie. Here is the recipe courtesy of Martha (copyright June 1997).

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting Pate Brisee (Pie Dough) 1 large egg 1 tablespoon milk 3 pints blueberries, picked over 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 1/2 cup sugar 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces DIRECTIONS

On a lightly floured work surface, roll out half the dough to 1/8-inch-thick circle, about 13 inches in diameter. Drape dough over a 9-inch pie pan, and transfer to refrigerator to chill for about 30 minutes. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Whisk together egg and milk to make egg wash, and set aside. Combine blueberries, lemon juice, sugar, flour, and cinnamon, and turn onto chilled bottom crust. Dot with butter. Roll out the remaining dough to the same size and thickness. Brush the rim of the crust with the egg wash, place the other piece of dough on top, trim to 1/2 inch over edge of pan, and crimp the edges with a fork or your fingers. Transfer the pie to the refrigerator to chill until firm, about 30 minutes. Brush with the egg wash, and bake for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 30 to 40 minutes more or until juices are bubbling. Let cool before serving.

 

SOURCE: MARTHA STEWART LIVING, JUNE 1997

Bayona Cafe

Bayona Cafe, Manchester NH. The newest hidden gem with very eclectic ambiance, catering to unique tastes. The interior is a revival of the historic 1886 cotton mills with rich original flooring, granite and brick masonry and low beamed ceilings giving the Bayona a cozy yet eclectic feel with  bright magenta and teal walls to the industrial lighting fixtures. The food is spectacular. Serving breakfast and lunch and early dinner fare with generous portions. Specials of the day are posted daily on their website and created for the discerning diner by Executive Chef Johnny.

Bayona Cafe is part of the Tidewater Catering Group family owned and operated by Keri Laman. Visit the Bayona Cafe on your next visit to Manchester, NH.

Creative Spaces

Where is your studio? The question I am asked every time I give out my business card.

We are photographers and synonymous with being a professional photographer is a studio. Photography studios popped up all over the place back in the 80's and 90's with the  baby boomer generation and when the economy was booming. Baby boomers wanted what  the generation before them didn't have, to show their success through portraits. It was quite prestigious for a bride-to-be to go into New York City or Boston to have her bridal portrait taken by the prestigious photography studios in those days.  Back in the day, you had made it as a professional photographer if you owned your own studio. Then there was digital and the whole world of film photography and studios was shattered!

 Film photography  was a necessity to have a studio (if you could afford one!)

A studio was a necessity because you needed to have a black room to develop your images. Wedding photographers needed a studio for developing the hundreds of wedding photos they were hired to produce. What took a film photographer several months to get proofs off  to the fretting bride, now takes weeks with digital.

First introduced and sold to the masses in 2001

...the first digital camera was invented in 1975, film photography would soon become a thing of the past after the popularity grew for digital. With the popularity of digital photography growing, the need for studio was not a necessity any longer. Old school professional film photographers were losing business to this new phenomenon. Brick and mortar studios overhead and cost of  camera equipment was astronomical and without the steady flow of portrait clients, many studio photographers were put out of business.

When I discovered digital, 10 years ago, I packed away the 35mm camera and film...

and did something I had never even dreamed of doing. I quit my day job and amateur photographer status (I have been a hobby photographer for over 50 years (YIKES!) I started a photography business. I started it with a brand new Nikon D70 (in 2005) on a wing and a prayer! Studio, who needs a studio I thought when I have digital. I only needed the camera, a flash, and a computer. When I am asked where's my studio, I simply reply "it's where you are standing!" My studio is the world around us. Yes, I do have portable lighting, backdrops, laptop and other equipment that travels in the back of my 2005 Subaru.  I  have a creative space (as seen in the photo below).

Now this isn't to say photography studios are obsolete. In fact, some of my favorite fellow photographers have great studios, but they are in the fashion, glamour and fine portraiture photography. I like to suggest to my clients that they go to them for a posed headshot or for fine portraiture. Posing clients is not my thing. Candid and unsuspecting is my style.

To answer the FAQ about my studio I do not own one, but I do own a creative space of my own, over my garage above the old 2005 Subaru Outback.