The Power of Print

I talk a lot about the importance of printing photographs but what’s even more convincing to me is what I am personally witnessing with my children.

When my first ‘baby’ was born, I was still a film photographer. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of photos my son as a newborn up until a young child. Then 2 things happened: 1) digital took over and 2) he didn’t grow up thinking social media was ‘the place to be’. At least not Facebook – where so many of his photos were stored.

“Is that me?”

“Yes! Don’t you remember this day? I look at this photo all the time!”

My son, holding an internationally published photograph I took of him as a baby boy. We have this image hanging in our home to this day. (Newborn, Baby, Child Photographer serving the Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Baltimore, Oahu area).

My son, holding an internationally published photograph I took of him as a baby boy. We have this image hanging in our home to this day. (Newborn, Baby, Child Photographer serving the Annapolis, Atlanta, DC, Baltimore, Oahu area).

It dawns on me how I almost feel as though I’m holding these sweet memories of his life captive. Now, granted, he has the power to login and look himself. But as technology grows and changes, our children will have no concept of how many people have viewed this, loved this, and commented on how amazing they are…or, more importantly, that we even displayed these sweet pictures of them ourselves.

There was an excellent article written the Baltimore Sun ran discussing how printed images of our children, displayed in the home, can actually enhance a child’s self esteem and help them get to know themselves. I encourage you to read it and share your thoughts. Did you have photos displayed in your home growing up? Do you now? Are they in ‘common areas’ or more ‘private’ rooms?

This is just one of the reasons I am more and more adamant in my business to make sure that your photographs are printed and printed to last. Yes, I am a photographer and specialize in capturing you and those you most love. I also have such an attachment to the families, children, babies, pregnant mothers, and newborns I photograph that it is my sincere desire that my photographs truly lend a positive impact for years to come.

xo

Teresa

Postpartum Depression: Beyond the Newborn Phase

One of the major misconceptions with Postpartum Depression (PPD) is the assumption that it is a short-term struggle. Much like the flu, it hits some harder than others, the time frame that you are ‘out of commission’ can vary, but overall, you bear through the worst of it until it’s finally time to get back to the daily grind.

Except sometimes the worst of it never goes away. Sometimes you never get better. Sometimes it leaves and comes back.

“Something is really wrong with me because you don’t hear people talk about postpartum depression starting and then staying like that.’” Said Chelsea Reiswig in an article posted by The Atlantic, When Postpartum Depression Doesn’t Go Away.

The article continues to discuss the the long term effects that PPD can have on an individual when it goes undiagnosed. Towards the end of the article, Reiswig states, “Now I have accepted this is likely something I will deal with the rest of my life...”.

The day I met Lorena (   Motherhood Unfiltered   ) I knew there was something a little deeper behind that gorgeous smile. D.C., Baltimore, Annapolis, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

The day I met Lorena (Motherhood Unfiltered) I knew there was something a little deeper behind that gorgeous smile. D.C., Baltimore, Annapolis, Atlanta, Oahu Photographer.

And if you think it’s hard for the individual themselves to try and grasp what is happening to their emotional, mental, and physical health, it can be just as complicated for professionals. “It is very difficult for a person, even a trained person, to be able to distinguish between regular frustrations, hormonal fluctuations, and a mood disorder,” says Nicole Washington, a Tulsa-based psychiatrist.

I sincerely think this is why the discussion of what happens around birth - before birth, during birth, after birth - needs to be recognized as something that is not shushed and discarded. If we aren’t even near the point of being able to pinpoint and recognize certain challenges, the furthest thing from helping that is throwing up our hands, saying ‘Yep. That sucks.’ and changing the topic.

Laurena talks about her struggles after birth in her article,    The Truth Behind the Photo   . Newborn, Birth, Maternity photography serving the D.C., Atlanta, Annapolis, Baltimore, Oahu areas.

Laurena talks about her struggles after birth in her article, The Truth Behind the Photo. Newborn, Birth, Maternity photography serving the D.C., Atlanta, Annapolis, Baltimore, Oahu areas.

When I recognized that writing about the topic of Postpartum Depression was something that I felt was a necessary, I envisioned it to be a three part series: capturing the perspective of a postpartum mother I knew, sharing a piece of my own experience, and finding one article that may share some insight on this highly complex issue. Having come to what I loosely assumed would be the ‘end’ of this topic, I am reconsidering that my time exploring this is ‘done’.

I am well aware that this is not a topic that is going to be enjoyed by many; however, I am going to take the ‘quality over quantity’ approach with these writings, in the hopes that a few may be encouraged to recognize signs and symptoms within themselves or someone they know.

So, let’s keep the conversation going, so that we may feel joy, share joy, raise joy, and leave a legacy of joy.

Xo

Teresa

The Best Time to Hire a Photographer

Communication is a practice I not only hold dear to me in my personal life, but in my Photography business as well. I recognize that hiring a Professional Photographer is not something people do on a regular basis, but that each business is often run so differently that the ‘rules’ can easily change.

A very common question I receive is, ‘When should I hire a Photographer?’ No matter if you are looking for a Photographer for maternity, birth, newborn, baby, children, or family, my answer is pretty much the same across the board.

The Baby Whisperer - Alexandria Newborn Photographer

The Baby Whisperer - Alexandria Newborn Photographer

I think the best way to look at this is before you hire anyone, first jot down some basics:

  • What am I looking to have photographed?

  • When?

  • When I look at photos of a similar photographed people, are there similar things I love? Black and white, lots of style, candid, etc?

  • What is my budget?

  • How important is this to me?

You don’t have to spend much time on these questions, whatever comes quickly to mind. It’s no secret that there are a many options to choose from regarding photography, so knowing a little more about what your specific desires are will help you narrow down your options right off the bat.

After that, reach out to a few Photographers you like, share your list if you’re comfortable (they should be able to honestly agree if they can meet your expectations), and then ask to speak with them a bit more. If you have children, does that Photographer seem to be good with kids? Are you a private person that needs your Photographer to have a calming presence? If you have a million questions, will they be happy to patiently answer each one for you or are you simply part of an assembly line of other clients?

Infant Snuggles - Alexandria Birth Photographer

Infant Snuggles - Alexandria Birth Photographer

Going back to the original question, I would say it’s never too early to being looking for, talking to, or meeting with the person you think is best for you. Once you are comfortable and you are confident your needs will be met, that is the best time to hire your Photographer.

If you think you may be hiring a Photographer in the future and would like to chat more, please reach out to me! I’d love to talk about what you have coming up and how you can best be served.

Xo

Teresa

Working with Julia Kelleher

While many creatives are thought to be simply ‘blessed’ or ‘lucky’ to have the ability to hone into that artistic gene, a little known fact about us is that behind the brush, pencil, or lens and deeply pitted behind the scenes is a constant feed of education. Surprised?

Certainly education comes in all forms (thank goodness) and while the internet, combined with social media, has provided incredible avenues to easily and affordably access a way to learn, being side by side another professional in the field is invaluable on many levels. 

I greatly miss the days of being in the SCAD classrooms, listening to a wide range of perspectives on how to improve, feeling the energy of a small room barely able to contain so much artistic energy from a handful of people, and being continuously challenged to push my skills to a higher level. 

In June I had an incredible opportunity to personally mentor next to a Photographer who has inspired, educated, and pushed me over the internet the last several years, Julia Kelleher of Jewel Images, Inc. A jam packed 36 hours in Bend, Oregon with Julia, Beth, and Belinda (the lovely ladies behind the newborn and maternity images adored by many) proved to be even more valued than I had hoped. 

Maryland Print Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson, visits with Julia Kelleher of Jewel Images (Bend, OR).

Maryland Print Artist and Photographer, Teresa Robertson, visits with Julia Kelleher of Jewel Images (Bend, OR).

Each and every step I take when working with my sweet clients, especially their newest bundle of joy, is a dance I’m constantly working to perfect between creativity, skill, and professionalism. While I understand why there may be a misconception with Photographers that there isn’t much more to simply picking up the best camera within arms reach and simply clicking the shutter, I take pride in sharing with my clients through their experience with me that I’m trained to do so much more than that. 

Over many moves and many workplaces (#MilitaryLife), I’ve been so fortunate to have picked up part of my skills with ‘on the job training’ from being a makeup artist for mannequins to working at the headquarters of Careerbuilder, all in addition to my formal education. I know with every job, there was an aspect of others outside of the position not always knowing the ins and outs of what truly when into a days work (have you ever been asked, ‘Honey, what do you do all day?’).   

I certainly don’t expect - or even want - you to know the fine details and training that go into your time with me. What I want is to feel confident that I am providing you the greatest service and product I can. More important than that, I want you to feel that I cared so much more about preserving your memories than just picking up a camera and clicking the shutter.

Thank you again to the women behind Jewel Images for being another important piece to my development and allowing me to create the heirlooms of your memories. I look forward to showing you what I have gained from this experience with Julia Keller in many sessions to come.