Monday, April 26, 2010

It's Here....THE NEW BLOG!

Hey Guys, I've got a brand spankin' new blog, please click here and bookmark the new site, www.ashleysturmphotography.com/blog for all future posts. It looks incredible and is very easy to use! There will no longer be postings here.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Mark Your Calendars

Dear blog readers,

I have not deserted you, I am actually working on a project that you will directly benefit from. It's something that's been in the works for a while and I can hardly wait to share...! I hope to have everything ready to launch next Monday, so mark your calendars.

Please keep checking back for the exciting news promise it will be worth it!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Mckenzie Carter / 2011 Senior Rep / Salem, OR Senior Photographer

Mckenzie is my first Senior Rep for 2011. I've had lots of applications coming in but this girl not only turned hers in first, I was very impressed with her application and how seriously she took this opportunity. I'm still accepting applications and most likely there's still a spot left at YOUR school! Download your application here and be sure to shoot me an email or comment here if you are planning to apply!

I want you all to get to know one of the new faces of Ashley Sturm Photography, Mckenzie Carter. I've had loads of fun becoming acquainted with this bubbly, energetic, intelligent teen.

Here are a few fun facts about her:

• Some of her favorite clothing stores include: Nordstrom, Buckle, Charlotte Russe, Forever 21 and Maurices.

• Extra Curricular Activities: Volleyball & Basketball.

• I asked if she had a style her peers want to emulate, here's what she answered:
"If I had to put a label on my style it would probably be sassy, fun, confident and girly all mixed into one."

• She plans to pursue her degree in Business and after college open a boutique shop in Portland or Seattle, and eventually bring her own line of clothing into the shop. (How cool is that!)




She looks stunning in this shoot above.



These are the 4x6 promo cards I ordered her, aren't they cool?

I don't think either of us can wait for her Spring shoot in May. We've begun planning all the fun details and I'm sure it will involve color, fashion, and just the right amount of 'edge'.

Once again, I'm still accepting applications for 2011 Senior Reps so if you're currently a Junior and think you may have what it takes, download the application and send it in today!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Austynn's Newborn Portraits / Salem, OR Photographer

There's something so special about capturing the first days of a baby's life. Their sweet innocence, love for their mother and need to be cared for and nurtured is completely unique to their age.

So much life ahead of them, so much love behind them. When I met Austynn and her mommy Kira I could see such a beautiful bond of love and affection. She's definitely a mommy's girl.

I wonder if I look so peaceful when I sleep? (hahaha)








Friday, April 9, 2010

DIY Bridesmaid Invitational Present

Today's entry is for all those who enjoy getting crafty! This particular project could be used for a variety of occasions from birthday to wedding favors, thank you's to x-mas presents. I used it as a way to ask my girlfriends and sisters to be my bridesmaids for my wedding.

I knew I wanted to make my bridesmaids feel special and pampered, and first impressions are everything, right? I decided to ask each girl individually to be my bridesmaid by offering them a cute little gift, something I would make.

After talking to Misty, my wedding planner from Luxe I was inspired to do something with a cupcake in cute packaging. I headed off to Michaels craft store to purchase all the materials and returned home to put everything together.


Here's What You'll Need:

(Calculate each item X the number of recipients.)
Small Kraft box
1-1/2 ft strip of 1-1/2 inch ribbon
6 inch strip of 1/4 inch ribbon
2 Tags each (I used some cute vintage ones made by Martha Stewart)
Computer paper
Glue
Scissors
Cupcakes - I choose cupcakes but there are many other items you could choose like cookies, jelly-beans, figurines, etc.)


Instructions

1. Cut all your ribbon, set aside.
2. Assemble each box.
3. Separate the tags into two piles; one for the name and one for the message.
4. Punch a hole into the name tags.
5. Punch two small holes 1/2 inch apart on the message tags.
6. On your computer type out each individual's name and space apart by 2 inches. Do the same with a message you want to share. Print and make sure the sizing will fit onto your tags.
7. Glue the printed names and messages into the tags.
8. Take your 1/4 inch ribbon poke through two small holes on your tag with the message, and tie into a small bow.
9. Glue tag with message to the bottom of lid (what faces you when you open it).
10. Place your present inside the box and seal with 1-1/2 inch ribbon. Take the name tag and bring the ribbon through, sealing it with a bow tie.
11. Cut out a heart shape on a patterned paper and glue to the front of the box.


I hope you enjoyed today's entry, do you think you may use this idea on the future? What for?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

8 Quick Tips To Portrait Photography, by Ezekiel

Have you ever wanted to learn how the professionals take a photo? I searched high and low and found just the person to demonstrate proper use of a camera. ; ) He may stand only 2 feet tall and be a mere 2.5 years old, but he's got the vocabulary of 3.5 year old and camera skilz like nobody's biznaz. (yes, I do a poor job at talking gangsta)

So with no further ado, let me introduce Ezekiel (hereinafter referred to as 'Zeeky") my nephew who's about to teach us all how to use our camera, mind, heart, and whim to utilize 8 tips to portrait photography.

1. Before you start clicking your shutter, get to know your subject. Notice their expressions; excitement, nervous, joy. Engage in conversation and establish common interests to make them more comfortable.

2. As you're talking, start envisioning what shots you'll take. Hold your eye up to the viewfinder and take some 'test shots.' Zeeky's got some really creative ways to look through your viewfinder, I may just try these myself. ; )

3. It's good to check your photos periodically as you go to ensure exposure is correct, but NEVER review each image and become more engaged with your playback than your subject. This can make them nervous and wonder if their photos are turning out.

Again, some creative ways to look through the viewfinder. : )

4. Still having trouble braking the ice with your subject? Give them a prop, something to focus on other than how to hold their hands. I like to find something either relevant to the subject or an object that I find aesthetically appealing, like this vintage bingo basket I found. Zeeky loves playing with this, and I find the concentration on his face perfectly represents where he's at in his developmental process.

5. Take time to photograph the details. Surroundings, props, eyes, hair, every part that represents them. Focusing in on one little part of your subject is a great way to really command the viewer's attention to that feature. Like Zeeky's hands. We may have missed how little and cute his little fingers were, or how dexterous he's becoming as he spins the bingo basket had I not focused in on just his hand.


6. Give your subject verbal prompts. As candid as these next few shots may look, I actually asked him to laugh at the camera. I'm all about a natural and un-posed photo, but sometimes a little acting goes a long way. Try to get as many natural smiles and giggles as you can, but don't be afraid to simply ask for the look you want.

7. Get on the same level. This is especially important when photographing small children. Being on the same level as your subject gives them more significance and power in your photo, and relates more intimately with them. There are times to get lower or higher, but don't always stand in place and shoot. Play with perspective and capture the world as they see it, from 2 feet tall.



8. Be true to yourself and your interests when you get behind the camera. Invest your whole mind and heart as you connect with your subject and dare to see things a new fresh way.


Alright, that's a wrap. Let's hear it for Zeeky, he did a splendid job!

Monday, April 5, 2010

High School Senior Reps 2011 / Salem, OR Photographer

Are you a Junior in High School, or do you know a Junior who wants FREE Senior Portraits?

Ashley Sturm Photography is now accepting
Senior Rep applications!

Senior Representatives are chosen to promote Ashley Sturm Photography and spread the word among their peers and their parent's friends and family. Any student that will be a senior during the 2010-2011 school year is qualified to apply. A maximum of 3 Reps from each high school will be accepted.
Download your application here.


As An Ashley Sturm Photography Rep You Receive:

• One FREE 2-hour on-location session in the Spring/early Summer ($125 value).
• Highly customized planning for your session including wardrobe, location, propping.
• Online gallery to view and share your photographs
• Custom Senior Rep referral* cards, each with your portraits, name, and information about our studio, PLUS a 10% discount to the person presenting your referral card. This means you can offer all your friends an exclusive discount of 10%, just because you're a Senior Rep!
• Special Press on ASP's Blog and Facebook page.

*A referral is a person you recommend that becomes a client of mine; someone you refer to me.

But That's Not All!

Each Referral = $20 gift card or a $35 print credit. You can choose from the following for your $20 gift card; Nordstrom, Starbucks, Best Buy, or Target.
Second Referral = Additional 2-hour on-location session in the late Summer/early Fall with a new online gallery and custom set of referral cards.
($125 value)
Third Referral = One 8x10 OR Two 5x7 customized softcover photo book(s) with 10 pages (20 sides) of photos from your session. ($250 value).

Fifth Referral =
15 full color 5x7 customized Senior Graduation Announcements. ($120 value)
Tenth Referral = 32GB iPod Touch ..... Seriously! ($299 value)

Ashley Sturm Photography makes sure being a Senior Rep pays off!
After your tenth referral you will have received products & services valued over $1,260, all for simply telling your friends and family about your personal experience with ASP and convincing them to book their own personal session.

So what are you waiting for?
Download your application, tell all your friends about this opportunity and take your first step to getting amazing senior portraits and a ton of amazing products FREE.

HURRY! Application deadline will be in May and seniors are chosen on a first-come first-serve basis. Don't miss out!


Call my business phone for more details:
(503) 559-1906,
Or Email me:
ashley@ashleysturmphotography.com ,
And Visit My Website:
www.ashleysturmphotography.com


Portraits from some of my 2010 seniors.







Friday, April 2, 2010

5 Things You Wouldn't Think To Do On A Rainy Weekend

Today, it's rainy. Today, it's stormy. Gray. Windy. Wet. Pitter-Patter. Gray.

It's Spring, right? Aren't we supposed to see blue skies, colorful flowers, picnics and afternoon walks? Oh, right, we live in Oregon.

If you live in Oregon the rain just can't get you down, or you'd be a pretty sad person most of the time. I think no matter the weather there's plenty to do on a weekend, so I'm sharing 5 things to do on a rainy day.

1. Get crafty and re-decorate for Spring. Search crafting blogs for ideas, Martha Stewart, and HGTV. Find forgotten treasures stored in your basement and give them a new polish. Recover those gray pillows with fresh colors and big floral prints.

2. Organize your family photos. (You know, the ones piled in the box buried in the garage?) Buy a nice photo album, or get creative and make are with your photos by making a collage.

3. Fancy up your typical 'Movie Marathon' with a fondue feast. Start with your appitizer course: breads and veggies dipped in cheesy heaven. Then your main; meats boiled in seasoned broth, dipped in an assortment of flavorful dips. Last but perhaps tastiest, finish with your dessert; warm chocolate with fruits, cakes, marshmallows, and nuts as dippers.

4. Turn your favorite room into a spa. Turn down the lights, put on some relaxing music, eat some cookies, light some candles and soak your feet. Maybe you could even convince your significant other or kids to give you a foot massage!

5. Do some online shopping for cute spring accessories on Etsy.

I'll throw in a 6th idea for kicks, draw pictures with chalk on your sidewalk. : )

Hope you all have a wonderful Easter weekend!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Product Spotlight: Senior Folio / Salem, OR Photographer

I've never been a fan of those cheap card stock senior folios used to display senior portraits. You know the ones with the gold lining? But after multiple clients asked what folios I offered I realized I had to find a higher quality product to offer them, and I did. :)

Made locally in Gresham these sleek leather folios offer a minimalistic, clean, sophisticated case for your senior's portraits (or any subject for that matter). The photo slots are customizable and they even offer imprinting. Comes with a beautiful black box to safely store and carry your folio.

Prices range from $105-$205 depending on size and the amount of photographs you want and include photographs. Imprinting costs an additional $45 but adds a personal touch.

Call today if you're interested, for a limited time I'm offering a 15% discount to any customer who mentions this post when ordering their folio. Offer ends April 14th 2010.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Austynn's Sneak Peek / Salem OR Newborn Photographer

Last Friday I got to meet sweet little Austynn who's a five-week-old darling girl. Enjoy this preview to next week's full post!

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