South Windsor CT Photography Family Quick Sessions in the leaves and trees, Mini, Fall and Christmas

Don’t let the season run away from you. Get a jump on your holiday cards. Images are typically provided in a password protected gallery within a week of capture.

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To find out about Fall mini sessions click here

 

 

 

 

To find out about Christmas Tree Sessions at Dzen Farm Saturday 11/17 and Wednesday 11/21 click here

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Want to know more about Dzen Farm? Read what it’s like to get a tree there. The farm isn’t open until the day after Thanksgiving.

You can also email Sarah at cruzsarah@yahoo.com or text me at 860.819.6001

 

Mini-Session FAQs:

At certain times of the year, with fall being the most popular. Mini-sessions are needed to get a few images for Holiday Cards,  sessions are shorter and booked one after another.

They are good for those families that want updated family photos but don’t necessarily need or want to spend too much time required with a full photography session. 15-20 minutes for a photoshoot, no problem!!

2. What should we wear?

Best tip… be comfortable in whatever it is you pick! I’ll send you tips and pointers.

3. When should we arrive?

Because we book these mini-sessions back-to-back, there is little wiggle room. If you are running late I unfortunately cannot give you extra time during your session since it would push back each session following. Please plan to arrive 5-10 minutes early, that way we can be sure to get all the photos you were hoping for of your beautiful family!

4. How many people can I bring with me?

These fall mini-sessions are designated for immediate families and their pets, You could book back to back sessions, but with extended family I would recommend a full session, at least one hour long.

5. Can I give or my mini-session to someone else?

YES! Absolutely. You can gift or sell your mini-session if you are unable to attend.

6. How long before I receive my proofs back?

You will receive your proofs back fairly quickly during the holiday season, I commit to a week. I understand most everyone will be using the images from the mini-sessions for holiday cards and gifts so I am focusing on a quick turnaround.

Image proofs will be emailed via a private online gallery link for you to view and order from. You will receive the email within a week after your session.

7. Can I purchase more images then what is included in my package?

Yes, you can purchase extra images that were not included in your package.

8. I want to schedule something outside of a mini-session because I would like to have an extended family shoot done. How do I schedule that?

You can certainly do that. Please keep in mind space is limited this time of year and you will want to reserve your date asap. Email me at cruzsarah@yahoo.com

9. What is your cancellation policy?

If you absolutely cannot make your session and you cancel with at least 24 hours notice, you will receive a credit towards a future session.

10. What if it rains, do you offer a rain date?

YES! Rain dates are always announced prior to booking. Please be sure you are available for both dates in the case of bad weather. If for some reason you cannot make the rain date and you cancel with more then 24 hours notice you can use the credit towards a future session.

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Greenhouse family photo session at Woodland Gardens in CT

The snow falling in huge chunky flakes was so graceful and peaceful falling with a hush, but it was already late March. Not a one of you wanted your families photographed in the confetti and my own kids were over it. It was time to think outside the box by going into one!

Giddy when Woodland Gardens in Manchester CT opened their doors to us. Their warning was that in April the greenhouse ‘is just starting to look good’. Wow. I mean the color was so welcoming and the air so fresh.DSC_9742

So delighted when some of you braved the unusual idea with me to make some lovely images. Mixing it up was an exciting challenge, especially when I woke up to rain!

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All my wedding photographing experience had me ready to look at different angles, avoid the puddles and greenhouse equipment to make the expected clean and bright images of your relationships.

The bright spring colors in your outfits contrasted what was happening outside and was so inspiring and joyful inside. After glancing around there were lots of choices. We just had to find spots to snuggle for a few to get some updated photos to hang on the wall (or as a gift for Mother’s Day!!!) It was spacious enough to get the touch of play too…

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The mini session vibe and end results are different compared to in-home or park sessions, but I still love love love them.

Mini sessions are even faster paced than a full session with concentration typically on the immediate family but in a fun setting. We did pumpkins and leaves in the fall so spring was a welcomed new opportunity. No matter the setting, my focus always is capturing the family connection. Both types of sessions have a place in my business and on your walls.

They both could work for your family too, it depends what you want the images to reflect. Need some updates to your wall or do you want a full complete story?

Anyway, here’s a little sampling of the lovely love we captured this year during the Spring Greenhouse Mini Sessions at Woodland Gardens in Manchester CT.

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Are you ready to talk about your own family session?

I’m just a message away my friend 🙂 Contact me so we can get to talkin’. And if you think you’d like to do a mini session next time, keep your eyes peeled on instagramor sign up on my email list – I’ll be sure to share info without annoying you with junk. Promise!

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What to expect … Family Photography in South Windsor, Connecticut

Some thoughts on making the most of your family photography session.

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I send tips on dressing and Pinterest links to help you, but choosing clothing helps determine the kind of images you will have. Soft and elegant?  Chose neutral colors with soft, flowing fabrics…. think creams, very soft pastels, oatmeals, light browns, tans, grays, and slate blues.

Fun?  Choose coordinating bold colors like hues of gray with yellow or bright red accents.  Add scarves, headbands, hats, or a prop like a flag. Some families have their hair and makeup professionally done.  Whatever makes you feel most put together and true. sarahcruzphotography

Rest up.

The best lighting is the two hours before sunset and after sunrise, but I am able to shoot at any time of day. Many families come to a photo session and schedule dinner after.

If this is your plan, be sure to give everyone a healthy snack before the photo shoot. I encourage drinks to be brought especially during the summer when we are meeting outside. Blankets and mittens if it’s the winter.

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Participation.

Most teens dread the family photo session and some dads too, but I work fast and keep things moving. Most are pleasantly surprised. I’ve yet to be overwhelmed by a toddler DSC_8437either. I chat and interact  with your children to get natural, gorgeous smiles.  It really is painless and worth any anxiety for the time together and amazing photographs.  If you are engaged as a family and loving on each other your smile will be natural. Knowing this will be shared with your grandchildren, you will be so glad that you gave this time to your family.

Have fun with your family.

Don’t be afraid to pick up your children and toss them in the air.  Kiss your spouse on the cheek or whisper how much you love them  Have fun. Laugh. Snuggle. Play.  This captures emotion and relationship –  your love through my lens.DSC_3190

Incorporating an activity that the family loves to do together is an easy way to do this. When we meet at a park and the kids run or play that’s one aspect, but making something like a campfire is another. Its’ something to do with your hands, engages everyone, and brings an authentic smile to your face.  Do you cook together? Let’s make something. Do you love to read together?  Bring some books.  Love to play board games or cards?  Plan to play a round of cards during your family photo session.  Other ideas include: bike riding, hiking, picnics – families that are engaged will have authentic photographs that reflect who they are. This will make the most of the photography session and celebrate your family to create images you love.

 

What it feels like to hire a professional family photographer – CT Family Photography

For most, a family photo means a stranger’s snap in front of a vacation spot or the waiter when you realize everyone is together at an event table.

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Hiring someone for something you can do for yourself seems odd and yet we go to a restaurant or buy a pie at the farmer’s market for the experience and self reward.

I reached out to some of my recent clients to get their feedback and included some more details on what the experience is like when we work together.

“I am SO happy that we had the photos done. As you know, the kids grow up exponentially fast! Photos are such a perfect memento of capturing that point in time that you want to be able to remember forever. Our living room wall is covered with those pictures and I love looking at them. Just the other night I was looking at one of the pictures of my middle child and he ALREADY looks different, older, and it wasn’t really that long ago. For instance that front tooth that was loose in the picture is now gone, but we still have this adorable picture of him and that front loose tooth that I won’t forget 🙂 “- Cara

“I absolutely love love all the pics you took. Especially the spaghetti ones. I have some displayed in frames in the kitchen and the others in a photo book! People are always commenting on the pics! ” – Tina

“We gifted my in-laws the huge canvas and they love it!” – Dayna  

“We hesitated to have photos taken not realizing how valuable they are now that the time is gone. I’m really glad we made the time. ” – Diane

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High School Senior Yearbook Portraits

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After taking photos with her sister, it was Maddy’s turn to be alone in front of the camera. We had several outfits to go through a majority of them being natural, casual and sporty so our location was perfect. So was she, because this gal was willing to try lots of poses and looks.

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Flexibility and the a willingness to relax really makes for a good image, even when you are worried about getting poked by the grass or losing a bracelet in the field.

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That willingness to let go makes room for conversation while I’m coaching where to place hands or shift so the light hits just so.

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Props like sports equipment or a book gives provides something else to focus on and will mark the time you spent in high school in a way the yearbook may not.

Yearbook formals through the school or as part of your session with me is a memorable way to mark the end of your time in High School. Celebrating what the time has meant to you and making a photo of that creates new memories.

Congratulations Maddy and the class of 2017!

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Winter Snow Baby Outdoor Photo Session with Hulafrog South Windsor, CT

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Being cold and pushing snow off my car after a long shift of waitressing at Friendly’s convinced me to move to CA as soon as I finished my degree at UConn. A few (?) years later the white stuff is so enchanting, temperature is an after thought.

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The world is all different covered in snow. A giveaway with the newly launched Hulafrog South Windsor was a match to encourage people to move outside.Happily. the winner had a new baby to celebrate and was cool with winter.sarahcruzphotography3-1-of-1

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We just had to wait for the magical fluff to fall, so even though the contest was in November, we just had an outdoor winter session. The wait gave the baby a chance to grow, master smiling and lifting her head.

Fortunately, there wasn’t wind. The last time I had been in these woods was for a freezing fall shoot and this February day was more comfortable.

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So being in the snow is much like other sessions, there are posed and play shots, though it may all happen a bit faster if the wind picks up.

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Special thank you to Hulafrog South Windsor for connecting me with this family, follow them on Facebook for other contest opportunities and to keep posted on family happenings in our town.http://hulafrog.com/south-windsor-ct hulafrogs-most-loved-badge-winner-2017-200

No Place Like Home. Great Indoor Family Photos.

Tag your family is it – as you play and I capture images. Running through the grass or snow, outside family images are energetic and fun.

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Indoor images can be just as spontaneous even though the movement is limited.They require a more controlled approach, but home is where the heart is. Your family is already comfortable there and it adds meaning to images.

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If being in the snow isn’t your thing, consider shooting in your home. A location doesn’t need to be magazine ready or even straightened up, just a few windows and we’re good to go. dsc_0719

My wedding experience gives me the flexibility to roll with what is available. I have been known to move a stack of magazines or a bright colored throw from the background. I’ve also in some situations, like this one, had to freak out about the amazing expanse of windows and warm afternoon light we had.

All my typical fooling still comes out even though it’s a little less that I’m about to back into a random bush and instead leaning toward you from behind a chair.

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The cool part is that the consistent set up for the images make a nice display.

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For the love of weddings. CT Family Photographer

_dsc0186During the rain storm yesterday, I planned to pull some images for a wedding inquiry and next thing I knew the kids were walking in off the bus.

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Only a few galleries were easily accessible and yet I fell right down the rabbit hole. Why are we so drawn to the romantic charm of a wedding?

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So I’m sharing some of my favorites from the galleries I had on hand.Who doesn’t like details? The dress, bouquet, rings, fancy shoes, venue…

_dsc0687How the groom enters, what’s his response when she does…

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I thought it was about relationship, but a quick google search revealed not only that , it also our joy in ceremony.”rituals help people transition …and savor the milestone they have just reached.” Michael Norton of Harvard Business School in this article Mic.com.

Each new commitment is unique as the couple and  I always tear up.

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They are beaming, proud, happy. Because all the planning has come to this.

Then there is the excitement of the party with your dearest friends and family.

After formal family shots, it’s my favorite, images to keep as a mint new couple.

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On to the party.

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When that weighty invite arrives in the mail, get excited to embrace all the tidbits but mostly fall a little more in love. Because their love validates your love.

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Who doesn’t love a wedding? Wanna read more? loved this article too. Had to post my adoration for the ceremony because truly I love to photograph relationships. Family photography in South Windsor CT is my joy. _dsc0640

 

 

Suffield, CT High School Senior portraits – Daybreak beauty.

dsc_6415Uninspired about what’s offered to you through your High School for yearbook photos? I get it.

Think outside the box of the studio or the school’s contract & formula portrait. You have choices and image files I provide are high quality and can be printed in your yearbook.

So leave a mark & embed how you live in a print. Don’t underestimate your senior photos like they don’t matter, because they do, They are a snapshot of who you are right now. Do them your way and have options!

Grace just needed one image for her yearbook, but also wanted to celebrate her puppy, her riding skills and where she was in life.dsc_6373

We decided outdoors near a barn made sense and they had a place in mind. Excited to shoot outside of South Windsor I met her in her hometown of Suffield,  CT at the crack of dawn at this beautiful farm. Because the sun was rising we had lots of looks with the different light and she ended up with quite a gallery to choose from.

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Everything from styling your session and look, to choosing your location and theme; the choice is yours.

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Grace had her high resolution senior image file for the yearbook. PLUS. some great photos with all her facets and most importantly, with her biggest cheerleader – mom.dsc_6442 Call and reserve your unique date and session type – booking senior portrait sessions for the 2017 graduates.

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Halloween Sessions – CT Family Photographer -Sarah Cruz

Digging through the discarded wigs, I pulled out some Christmas tinsel and pulled it around my baton to complete my black leotard DSC_0269with a slash of silver that ran from hip to shoulder. Rain had prevented our Memorial Day parade, but I created a reason to wear my treasured baton outfit. Paired with black tights and a black wig of spiked 4 inch hair. As I proudly stood with my baton in the air as we trick or treated, I was electricity! Felt like a super as I ran through the streets fading into the night.

dsc_7694-1We put so much care and thought in to our kids outfits that only are celebrated one time a year. Halloween sessions are a way to celebrate that and capture the joy that being someone else brings.

I love making these photos. The goal is to incorporate the scenery for the fantasy of your child’s costume.dsc_6624

It’s such fun to see the unique loves of the kids and how excited they are to be dressed as their favorite.dsc_6762

Economically priced to encourage the fun, each session comes with some digital images to post your superhero or storybook character on FB.

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These sessions take about 20 minutes because kids are in character and unposed out the gate.

They are booking and happening now, though I typically don’t post to my Facebook until the two weeks before the holiday. So don’t hesitate to connect with your kid in a new way delighting in their fantasy then let’s talk to figure out the best way to execute their ideas.

Create a special photo that you can display year round or pull out just for October. See below for details on pricing. screen-shot-2015-07-10-at-7-24-55-pm

To see more photos cut and paste : http://www.sarahcruzphotography.com/Children/Halloween-mini

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