Toddlerhood can be Magical - Toronto Family Photographer

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Toddlerhood can be Magical - Toronto Family Photographer

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My goal for every session is to create a collection of images that echo true feelings of a frozen moment in time. In the case of toddlerhood, it is very special to see the personality of a little person come to life. Toddlers are know to be active, busy and adventurous making most parents feel uneasy to have them photographed. Case in point, I often hear how all the photos mom or dad are attempting at home come out blurry and do not show any true emotion to the cute, sweet little person they are head over heels in love with. Sometimes they bring this energy to their session as they see their little toddler being busy and disinterested, they immediately begin to worry if I even got a single photo of their sweetness. I tend to remind parents that their vision is slightly altered by the Rolodex of experiences they've had with their child to date.... while mine is focused on the story of our moment in time ~ I have a vision and my energy is directed towards creating it in a more peaceful way. This an area I explore with every client before we book a session as it is so important to understand the deep psychology that goes into creating images and how they have different emotional effects on us. A great topic that I will explore another time ...
Today, enjoy all the sweetness that comes with watching parents love on their child and simply the beauty of being together!

The experience in their own words .....

Thank you so much - these are stunning! It's exactly how you said it would be - the session felt chaotic for us but the pictures you captured make it seem like such a slow peaceful morning session :) We are thrilled with how they turned out and the lighting is amazing. I'm glad we made a last minute switch to a sunrise session! You have an amazing way of capturing real moments between families and we are so thankful to be able to work with you.
Thanks again ~ Marieke Greve

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This Is Us - Toronto Lifestyle Photography

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This Is Us - Toronto Lifestyle Photography

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I've been capturing portraits of Jimi since the wee little age of 2. Every year, we celebrate how much he is growing and the beautiful bond mom and him have. Its so special and beyond an honour to be invited to watch, observe and document how I see their relationship grow deeper. This year our session landed on Jimi's actual 6th birthday! We decided hanging around the lively their Junction neighbourhood in Toronto was best. Here we are exploring the streets and being nothing more than happy to show off life just the way it is! 

Receiving mom's feedback after viewing her gallery, I was moved as my deep passion lies in creating art in your everyday moments.

OMG THIS IS SO US!!!!! YOU DID IT!!!!

I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THESE, WILL GO ON A VIEWING FRENZY TONIGHT
OMG OMG HE IS SO PRETTY

I CAN'T STOP ALL-CAPS I'M SO HAPPY WITH THESE
THANK YOU!!!!!

Talk soon, my friend!

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Art for Cloth - Ottawa Fundraising Event

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Art for Cloth - Ottawa Fundraising Event

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You are invited to participate in the
One Diaper Canada Charity Event

October 21st 2017 between 9am and 1pm

In Canada, 1 in 5 families is impacted by diaper need (the inability to provide enough clean diapers for their baby) because they are struggling financially. ONE DIAPER CANADA is committed to helping families in need by providing complete cloth diaper kits free of charge. Each of these kits costs the charity $100 to assemble, this includes: diaper repairs, sanitization, a cloth diapering information booklet, packaging and shipping.

One Diaper Canada + Irina Fortey Photography have joined forces to help more families receive cloth diaper kits in the coming 2018 year. We are co-hosting this fundraising event to provide donating families with a photography experience to keep alive the memory of their generosity.

 A minimum donation of $100 will allow you to receive a free photography session and 5x7 gift portrait.
Donating families will receive a time slot to create a family portrait on October 21st between 9am – 1pm at Irina Fortey Photography’s Gallery located in Ottawa.

100% of the proceeds will go towards One Diaper Canada. Tax receipts for the full donation amount will be provided to all donors.
One Diaper Canada will also be accepting donations of used or new cloth diapers for drop-off at the studio on the day of your photo shoot.

If you are unable to attend, please consider making a donation to help, I will offer a $50 off photography voucher for any future session with your donation.

CLICK .... DONATE .... BE REWARDED
https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/one-diaper-canada/events/art-for-cloth/

 

 

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How is Professional Photography Priced

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How is Professional Photography Priced

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The cost of professional photography can be confusing for the average consumer. I wanted to take the time and go over a few key points to help you better understand how a professional photographer charges for their service and products. 

These three outlined elements determine how much a photographer will charge to complete a collection of images from any family session. The time allocated to each of the three is where you will see price difference evident, which in most cases is where the misunderstanding as to why one photographer can charge $150 while another is $900 or more. Photographers know that every consumer's needs can be a bit different, so as you review these areas keep in mind that what works for your family may not be the same for another. How you choose to invest your time when working with an independent photographer will also play a role in the end price point. 

Let's begin!

Style
You will find various styles of images when you visit a photographer's portfolio. Some will be taken in studio, with props, outdoors, in a home or simply in a documentary setting. Each of these styles have a particular way in which they are captured. For example, in a studio, a photographer has a controlled setting, they usually set up their lights to yield a particular constant light to their images. They have almost no changes to make from one session to the next. In contrast, an on-location photographer is working with a larger range of lighting conditions and will need to plan accordingly to create a desired look to their images. They have more equipment to bring with them and operate it dynamically at said location. As you browse portfolio's take note to what you are most drawn to and think about how you see yourself in their work, this can be either in their studio or a particular outdoor location. 

Experience
I believe this to be the most important one! I am personally a lifestyle photographer, it is very important to me to get to know a family or child before I capture images of them because it allows me to visually blend their personality to the art I will be creating of them. This takes time, I meet with each family/child before their session in a no stress, fun, chit chat and play environment. It allows me to observe my subjects in their natural environment and give them an opportunity to get to know me before I place my camera between us. This process is time consuming and I need to charge accordingly to how I produce the final product. In contrast, another photographer may choose to work with a family without ever meeting them before hand, with very little investment in time outside of the actual session time. This allows said photographer to charge a lower fee as they have a shorter workflow to how they capture and deliver their final images. It is up to the consumer to decide what they feel most comfortable with and budget accordingly. For studio environments, which in most cases have a higher volume model (where multiple sessions are booked back to back) very little interaction is in place. It is for that reason, how you choose to invest in your experience with a photographer will influence the time you also invest before, during and after your session.

Product
After the session is done, you are now left with deciding how you wish to remember your experience either through prints or albums. A newer trend I've seen over the years is copies of only digital files, as many are seeing the desire to share only on social platforms. Some photographers have began to include the digital files as the only add on to the session while others like myself find deeper value in providing albums and prints as a collection. The final product plays a huge roll to time allocated to creating them as well as the physical products cost from professional suppliers. It is very important you consider the effort that went into creating the permanent display.

This sums up the three areas that will influence the price of your photography investment. If there is one thing you should take away from this overview is the importance in doing your research. Every independent photographer is creating their own creative vision and its best you connect with one that meets the needs of you family. 

To get to know me more, here is a short bio and frequently asked questions about lifestyle photography.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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September, a month to reset and remember - Toronto and Ottawa Lifestyle Photographer

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September, a month to reset and remember - Toronto and Ottawa Lifestyle Photographer

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Summer is coming to an end, a new school year has began and routines for families have changed yet again. For most parents it's mixed emotions on the leaps their children will be making, from entering daycare, preschool, kindergarten or any other grade it is heart bursting feelings building up inside you. Any change can create unwanted anxiety, but the change in your children is by far the hardest. We all enjoy predictability.

Four years ago I come up with an annual portrait system to help ease the transitions of watching your children grow. Most importantly give you a reason to spend a little more time together celebrating the change of season and the new school year. I now dedicate September as the annual family session month and offer a promotional rate, get in touch with me to find out more or better yet sign up for my newsletter on the front page and be the first to know ;)

Kick anxiety to the curb and let's get together for a fun session filled with laughter! 

You can learn more about my lifestyle photography here, and if you have a question you can send me an note here or better yet book a session! You can also subscribe to my newsletter on the main page for my annual portrait promotion; this way you'll always have first pick on session dates! 

Enjoy the gallery of this lovely Toronto family I've been watching grow over the last four years ... cannot wait to see them soon! xo

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Family Swayer - Toronto Lifestyle Photography

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Family Swayer - Toronto Lifestyle Photography

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On a perfect Saturday afternoon after a drive in from Ottawa, I met this beautiful family at the popular Riverdale Park that over looks the city scape of downtown Toronto. They were full of warm, positive and joyful energy, our time together was a such a fun experience. They even showed me a gem location that allows for a stunning rooftop capture- if you are a photographer in Toronto, Bridgepoint Health allows access to their patient rooftop patio. There is a beautiful garden and plenty of seating to take in the surrounding vibe of the city. Bonus, there is glowing sunset light all around to make your images pop ;) Just have a peak of their gallery! I will be back here no doubt!

If you are interested in a session in Toronto, feel free to get in touch with me here! xo

Film Gallery: Ilford HP5 shot on Nikon F100

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One Diaper Canada - Partnership

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One Diaper Canada - Partnership

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Did You Know ... It costs over $3,000 to diaper a single child in disposable diapers in North America. For families who can’t afford these expenses, they may reuse dirty diapers, causing grave implications to a child’s health. This issue has been labelled “diaper need” and One Diaper Canada is at the forefront of tackling this concern. (source: http://onediaper.org/)

When I first read this simple statistic and began my research into the mission of the One Diaper Canada Organization, I knew I had to find away to help their vision. I've been fortunate enough to never worry in diapering my own children but it doesn't take away from parents who struggle with this basic necessity. We are currently in the works to host a fundraising event in October where 100% of proceeds will go directly towards closing the cloth diaper gap. Today, I wanted to introduce Cassandra and Lisa, the founders of One Diaper, below are their personal stories on being a mom and their advice to any new mom who may need a bit of inspiration today.

Founder Lisa - shares her view on parenting and life with little people

If I had any advice to give a fellow mom it would be to do whatever you feel is best for your family and don't judge others for doing the same. There aren't many "right" or "wrong" ways of doing things when it comes to parenting and you just do what works for you. When my son was very young, my husband and I both worked until late evening. We had a great schedule worked out but it meant that his bedtime wasn't until midnight. He slept until about 10:00 or 11:00 in the morning so he was getting very good sleep for a toddler but the amount of judgemental looks and questions we got about our schedule made us feel like we were doing something wrong. Because of that schedule, both my husband and I were able to spend time with our son before we went to work and still put him to bed at night which was a very important time for us as a family. 

If there is one thing I wish to remember about my children today it is my son's thirst for knowledge and his curiosity about everything. He wants to know the "who, what, where, when, why and how" about absolutely everything and he can never know too much about something. My daughter, I wish to remember how loving and cuddly she is. When she just leans over and gives me a kiss on the forehead or literally picks up my arm and puts it around her I can't help but be proud of the affection she shows the people she loves.

Founder Cassandra - shares her views on motherhood

If you have any advise to give a fellow mom, what would it be?  
I am a relatively new mom, so I certainly do not have everything figured out yet!  One thing that makes a big difference in my confidence as a mom and the relationship that I have with my kids is to intentionally spend a chunk (some days short, some days longer) of time sitting on the floor with my kids and playing with them or reading to them without any other distractions.  It is especially hard on busy days but it introduces a calmness and time of connection that we might not get a chance to have otherwise.

If there was one thing you wished to remember about your children today, what would it be? and why?!
Their little voices and their sweet smell!  They grow so fast, I know that's one thing I'll miss as they get older. 

Thank you Cassandra and Lisa for sharing a slice of your motherhood ! xo

 

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Why Newborn Portraits are important - Toronto and Ottawa Lifestyle Photographer

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Why Newborn Portraits are important - Toronto and Ottawa Lifestyle Photographer

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Let's be honest, the first weeks of bringing a new baby home are stressful and the adjustment of around the clock care can leave you feeling exhausted. The simple thought of leaving your house, showering and getting dressed makes the heads of most new parents spin. So why in the world would you want to remember such a low point in your parenting life? Here is what I've discovered about the families who decide to welcome a photographer during the early weeks with baby.

The special bond formulating in the hours and days following the birth of your child cannot be described into words but we witness it beautifully in images (see image gallery below!). This new person you've waited so many months for has finally arrived and your heart is bursting, or better put, your heart is now walking outside your body. This new found love is growing with each passing hour but also something else is happening.... your little one is rapidly loosing their "fresh baby" look. The technical term is called the awakening period, you will notice your little one becoming more and more alert with each passing day. It is truly the most amazing and fulfilling thing to watch as a parent! Before you know it they've learned to roll, giggle, and in some cases walk before their first birthday! Making those 'fresh baby' days history!

Parents are often shocked at how quickly the first days pass and although they are exhausted they know that one day soon, they will want to remember the moments that bring them a sense of accomplishment in raising their child. To see a child grow and develop is an extremely rewarding experience. The endless effort and daily care to ensure a child is happy and healthy is very sentimental for moms and dads. To celebrate this journey, families choose to see the progress in photos and feel gratitude towards watching their family grow.

Below is the lovely Nikki and Reid with their sweet baby girl Quinn and sidekick Yoda. They will soon be welcoming baby number two and Nikki shares with us her experience in having images done in those first days! Thank you Nikki xo

You can learn more on how a newborn lifestyle session is captured by clicking here.

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In Mom's words ...

We are very happy to do newborn photos again the second time around as we really loved our session with our daughter when she was born. Being able to look back on that time and see the bond she was already creating with not only us (her parents), but also our dog Yoda has been priceless. We were able to make a book of the photos and share them with her grandparents as well as keep a copy for ourselves to show to family/friends when they visit. Our daughter has started to enjoy looking at photos of herself as well and I can only imagine that this fascination will grow as she grows. Along with making the book, we also printed several of our favourites and hung them as decor in her bedroom. I believe photographs make beautiful artwork and love to see our memories hung around our home! The first few weeks with a newborn are such a whirlwind that we are very happy that we chose to capture it, even if only a brief moment in time. Our daughter has changed so much over the past year and it is wonderful to be able to remember just how small she was when she first came into our lives. 

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Toronto Lifestyle Photography - mother and son

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As parents we feel our proudest when we see our children achieve and accomplish dreams they've drafted. The rush of emotion the moment you realize, this is it, they are independent and their voice in the world is now as powerful as yours sets your head spinning. So when Janet contacted me in the Spring to book a casual lifestyle session with her son, she was vividly wanting to celebrate the big accomplishments happening in her son's life. Erik had graduated university and began a career in the financial sector in Toronto. It was a turning point and the images that hung proudly on her walls today only showed Erik as little boy. In fact, the last photos she had of him and her where done when a dear friend had given her a gift certificate when Erik turned 13 years old. A new chapter in both their adult lives was taking shape and to remember their current home in Rosedale just steps away from the hip Bloor neighborhood was best fit for our backdrop. I hope this session inspires you that no matter how old your children get they are still the most important people in your life worth having photographs of.

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