Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Swine Flu scare

I'm sure everyone has heard about the swine flu scare that's plaguing our town right now. My children are home from school and we've decided to stay put and push everything else aside until this blows over. I've canceled all my sessions for this weekend and won't be going out at all. I hope we'll all look back on this a few weeks from now and say "wow that was a lot of fear over a small thing." Of course if it turns out to be a false alarm then everyone will say we overreacted, if it turns into a deadly epidemic, everyone will say we should have done more. In this case it's better to err on the side of caution.

I am worried about my daughter's first communion, which was supposed to be Sunday. I'm wondering if church will be canceled. If it is, then I guess her communion will happen later. The whole family was supposed to come into town for it and I'm sure they won't want to if New Braunfels turns into an epicenter of this thing. Visions of that movie Outbreak are running through my mind -- the one where the government surrounded the town and kept everyone inside through force and then planned on bombing it until Dustin Hoffman rushed in with the antidote at the last minute.

Let's pray for a Hollywood ending to this saga.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Girl Scouts, Earth Day, sunburn, ouch

Earth Day was a blast today with my Girl Scout troop. We set up a tent at the New Braunfels Earth Day Festival to dish out sun-made s'mores and play a scavenger hunt game with the kiddos. The girls had fun despite our constant battle with wind gusts that seemed determined to knock us out. We had to rescue the flying tent several times and we had a nasty accident with the solar oven when the wind whipped it over, smashing its glass top into a million pieces. But we perceivered (did I spell that right). The girls earned several badges today and took home a nice T-shirt to boot! I managed to get a few good shots of the s'mores and the girls, but I'm a bit too sunburned and tired to download my pictures tonight. It'll have to wait until tomorrow.

In other studio news, I had a quickie session with another nursing mom this morning. I hope I was able to get a few shots for her nursing but it proved to be a challenge. This little one simply did not want to nurse this morning. This was the first time I tried to get shots of a mom nursing in Landa Park and I'm guessing in the future we'll have to save that for the teeny tiny babies who are not yet interested in the world around them. This little one was just entering that explore-the-world phase and had absolutely no interest in nursing when there were ducks to be tormented. She was a sweetie, of course, and I, being the baby lovin' lady that I am, chose to simply follow her around and snap off a few shots of her mischief. We'll see how they turn out.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Jayme's infrared

The picture you are looking at to your right was taken by my husband, Jayme Blaschke. It is an infrared photo of the Hays County Court House in San Marcos. Jayme is a big fan of infrared and has some amazing captures in the Architecture section of my site. You can find his blog at:

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

This weekend's session

Well I've been Photoshopping like mad the past three days and I have the numb wrist to prove it. As I mentioned previously, I had more than 650 shots to sort through and from which to choose. I narrowed it down to about 85 shots that I like (all in all there were at least a hundred that I loved but some were so similar I had to choose between them). So on top of my normal duties as mommy, childcare giver, Girl Scout leader, and wife I've also been taking advantage of naptime and "Daddy's home" time to get these photos edited and ready for sharing as soon as possible -- with very little sleep along the way. I think the processing of the photo is my favorite part -- that's when the finished print really comes to life.

That being said, I'm a bit surprised by my choice of my favorite shot. It's this one. I did very little post shoot processing on this one. There was no use of flash or reflector, very little magical editing in Photoshop. This shot is just a simple use of available light from a window and I think it speaks volumes. What is she looking at? Did she just wake up on the day of her wedding and decide to try on the veil and dance around the room when something got her attention outside? Could it be her groom coming to see her? What also makes it special in my opinion is that Kristina is not wearing a drop of make-up. It's glamorous and seductive in the most natural sense possible. What do you think?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Breastfeeding Art

Breastfeeding Art
Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
I made another few additions to my project this weekend. You can find them in my "Beauty of Motherhood" gallery on my page. So far I've been going for the sweetness of nursing. I've been looking for the peace and the eye contact and the tenderness. In the coming weeks I'll be looking for some moms who want to shake things up a bit. I want to create some images that are a little bit different and shocking -- but in a good way. I want mom all glammed up in make-up and evening wear -- looking hot and sexy and she just happens to be nursing a baby as well. These shots may be harder to find because they're a bit time consuming on the part of the moms. Most moms of nursing babies don't have much time to get all glamorous for a few shots -- they've got their hands full as it is. But if you're reading this and you're interested in trying it, let me know.

On a more personal note, the Easter Bunny hit our house last night. He left tons of candy, which I think warrants a letter from me being that I'm the one who has to deal with the constant sugar rush and potential cavity infestation this leaves on our household. I believe I shall wait until the children fall asleep tonight and pack up all the chocolate and send it off with Jayme to work on Monday. He'll leave it in the breakroom and his coworkers -- like a swarm of locusts -- will descend upon the stash and clear it out. Problem solved.

Now it's off to the grandma's house for brisket and potato salad -- and the third in a long series of egg hunts for the kids. Happy Easter!

Easter Fun

Easter Blog
Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
Well today we're all exhausted. The usual Easter mayhem went well. We did a round the world trip in one day visiting both my mom and Jayme's mom in one day. The kids had a grand total of 4 egg hunts in all. They got entirely too much candy and of course I ate entirely too many Reese's peanut butter eggs -- if I were a superhero they would be my kryptonite.

Monday morning came with a bang and I'm back on my diet feeling hungry and deprived. I posted a couple of pictures here of one of our egg hunts. I tried to capture the thrill of the find when my youngest discovered an egg with his name on it.

I have another busy week this week and of course I'll be posting more photos here as I get them processed.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Nursing Mothers series

Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
Remember the other day when I mentioned I had put the call out to nursing moms to get some breastfeeding shots in my gallery? Well this is the first mom to answer the call. Isn't this little girl adorable! I have more sessions lined up through the weekend so I hope to be getting more shots like this up next week. I love capturing these kind of moments. It's priceless!

Okay I had to come back to this one and explain why there is no picture there. I had posted it to Flickr but was a little troubled by a less-than-desirable group who wanted to add it to their page. I removed it out of respect for this mother. It is, however, still available on my page in my Beauty of Motherhood Gallery and I stand by it as a beautiful example of motherhood. If you see other photographs removed in my previous blogs, the same reason applies as well.

Pregnancy Shoot

Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
I am really excited about some of the photos I got from a pregnancy shoot the other day. I would have posted them yesterday but I wanted to make sure I got the go-ahead from this client to share these photos with everyone. I believe they are beautiful, but because they contain nudity, I wanted to be sensitive to her wishes. I loaded some of my favorites up to the "Beauty of Motherhood" gallery under my Gallery link. Go check them out!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

It's a learning experience

PS Demo
Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
I've been spending a lot of time at the computer lately and I've got the carpal tunnel syndrome to prove it. I thought I would share with you some of the things I've been learning.

When I first started my little photography business I had no intention of becoming skilled at Photoshop. I thought I'd just snap the shot and print it out maybe with a little color correcting or sharpening. But Photoshop has come a long way in the past few years and I must say I am impressed at how easy it is becoming to create works of art on the computer screen. I used these photos as a demonstration of some of the things I have learned to do with this program. This young girl is very beautiful -- as is obvious in the 'before' picture on top -- but I thought it would be fun to give her an angelic, dreamy look and I must say I'm happy with the end result. It's not perfect. I see some things in it that I'd like to change (I won't point them out) and I may still continue to do some fine tuning on this print. I have a hard time saying a photo is done and have been known to continue fine tuning and tweaking even after the final version has been presented to the client. I've become a bit of a Photoshop nerd and like to throw around terms like High Dynamic Range in casual conversation. My friends mock me. I'm okay with it.

In other news, I have some exciting photo sessions lined up this week and into this weekend. I put out a call for nursing moms and I got a lot of responses. I haven't been able to find very many portrait photographers who specialize in nursing mothers and I'd like to take the project on myself. I'll be posting the results next week. I can't wait to get started!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Massive Photo Shoot!

Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
This weekend proved really busy for me. If you look at my site, you'll see there are dozens of new pictures in all my galleries. The bluebonnets were massive in Brenham (as I mentioned earlier, New Braunfels has no impressive displays of this little blue flower). So we had one big enormous photo shoot in a field of Brenham bluebonnets. We had some "trash the dress" shoots and got some senior portraits done and some glamour shots as well. It was a highly productive day and I'm still working on the post-shoot processing. I'll probably be busy with that for the better part of this week.

In other news, we attended a fun little book signing party at a friend's house and got to talk to Peter Beagle, author of The Last Unicorn. We had met Peter before on a couple of occasions through my husband's writing crowd but it's always fun to go to things like this that spur my kids' interests in books. My oldest -- who just finished the Harry Potter series -- was searching for some new books to occupy her time and grabbed hold of a couple of Peter Beagle's. She has since had her nose buried in one.

This week will probably be the busiest I've had in a long time. Every night this week is packed with sessions, and all of Saturday is booked solid. Sunday would be booked as well except for the fact that it is Easter. I'm sure I'll be doing plenty of photography on that day as well -- only along the snapshot nature.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Bluebonnet Time

Originally uploaded by lisablaschke
I had feared that this year would bring no bluebonnet pictures for our family because New Braunfels has had almost no rain for the past 6 months. But we traveled up to Temple last weekend for my cousin's wedding reception -- alas she eloped to Hawaii so we were unable to witness her actual nuptials, but she made up for it by throwing a great party with an open bar so who am I to complain! On the way we passed a little patch of them near an elementary school. This is the same patch we used to take my cats out to before I had children to subject to the old "loved ones in a bluebonnet patch" portraits.

The sun was a bit harsh being that it was a little after 5 p.m., but some of the shots came out okay.

On the subject of bluebonnets, I signed up for a workshop this weekend in Brenham. The workshop will consist of plenty of shooting time with a host of models in a bluebonnet field -- Brenham is apparently one of the few areas of the state to get lots of bluebonnets. I spent a year of my life in Brenham just out of college working for their newspaper. They used to publish the names of the people who saw the first bluebonnet of the year. "Little Sally Walker saw the first bluebonnet of the year off Pecan Street yesterday morning" etc. Yes, bluebonnets are big in Brenham -- not as big as Blue Bell, but pretty close. I'm looking forward to the experience and hope to be able to learn a few new tricks.