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

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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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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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Festive Fall Images – Family Photographer South Windsor CT

Ah the end of fall. These images were from late last year, but we never got a chance to celebrate them.

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Wanted to share this warm story because this time of year, when the town picks up our leaves and we start making lists, we don’t focus on fall so much as holiday. One session can bend and do both.

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We picked a forest setting as the leaves were off the trees but still available for play and we also had pine trees to give the alternative winter theme look.

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Mom smartly picked cool neutrals rather than bright reds which scream holiday. However the gray reflects the color of the tree trunks so is cohesive for fall.

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Resulting in images that work for fall, but also for a festive card. Fall is such a fun time for play and candids.

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I love to provide choices and flexibility to follow what the kids are into. Planning your session we talk about what you’d like to have a result. We go for the formal, playful, individual and group.

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Guiding toward that goal. I love ideas and am willing to go for it. Mom had a seen an image with a kid bring home a Christmas tree on their kid sized car. So I brought along a thick prop rope and the top of a artificial tree and *presto*.

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Fall Family Photos Broad Brook, CT 06016

In between all the awesome Halloween images, I had the pleasure of capturing a family. Always happy to meet at one of the local parks, but coming to your home is an added joy. It keeps me on my toes and like when I was wedding shooting, you never know what the setting will be like. So image my delight when I rolled up to this thrilling space! dsc_8374

The tree was drooping with beautiful yellow leaves which matched their home and there was a lush covering on the ground. Better still was their willingness to play. They loved the tree as well and showed me an image from a few years before that we recreated. So charming! Then we walked to the backyard. Such lovely light.

How adorable are these two? Love that they were quick to smile and had such easy attitude with each other. I sent them off to grab something they want to be photographed with and had to capture mom and dad, who looked so stunning against this amazing backdrop.

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Made it clear where their kids’ ease came from. Love when a family session results in a great image for the parents.

Kids swung back with their prized items. Then we made images of each kid with mom and dad individually.

We hit the front yard for an epic leaf battle which had lots of outtakes and a few keepers.

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Before we wrapped, we had a special request for an image “where I’m picking the leaves”. I adore when kids have ideas. How could we top that?

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High School Senior Photos for Guys- South Windsor CT

Documenting life events through photographs is special and important. High school graduation is an exciting time and you should have more than a selfie & your yearbook to mark it. dsc_5487High school senior sessions are one of my favorites to photograph! Marking this life event with personality and flair unique to each senior is like celebrating kids in costume.

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In each session we include props that represent each senior’s talents, hobbies, sports and personality, and select locations and backgrounds to match their individuality! Guys aren’t usually as psyched to get in front of the camera, but a playful & confident attitude wins!dsc_5472

In this case, Ryan was getting images made at his mom’s request. He was such a sport. We chatted ahead about interests. Turns out Ryan’s Eagle Scout project was to clear a section of the woods next to St. Margaret Mary Church property ( stmmsw.com) for the Stations of the Cross.  So we decided to meet there.

All the images here were taken on the church property and quickly. Even with the family furry friend, it took just a short time to capture the real smiles.

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We even encouraged Ryan’s mom Amy to sneak in for a few.

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dsc_5492Congratulations on your graduation Ryan! it’s never too early to plan your Senior Photo Session. I do book Senior Sessions all year! And sessions at any season can be epic!

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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Best time for Family Photos in Connecticut. 3 boys 4 seasons

You know you gotta do it.

Take the time to call a college pal, bake, or write a note, or paint the hall finally but the intended is held off cause your just “waiting until you have the time”.

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Urgent wins but unfortunately isn’t what you’ll wish you  had done in five years.

DSC_0373Urgent puts off everything else for later.  Important
things may wait, while urgent doesn’t.

Well the best time to get your photographs is now because they are just getting bigger and there are always other landmarks to hit. In winter, in spring, summer and in fall.

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Take the time, and you’ll find that it takes less time than you thought.  Schedule it in, and refuse to let anything crowd it out.

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Give yourself the chance to have photos of yourself and your crew created that you love.  Not photos that are ‘fine’ or escape being deleted on your phone– but that you’re thrilled to look at and share with others.  It will change perspective and make you feel accomplished especially if they are printed and framed or come ready to hang! 

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Don’t wait.  Believe me, you DON’T don’t need to wait for season to change, to lose weight, get a hair cut, be not pregnant, dress better,  or wait.

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Nothing needs to change – except maybe the way you feel what’s urgent. Schedule some time. Most days after 4pm or 1st thing on the weekend days. I’m in. Just email cruzsarah@yahoo.com.sarahcruzphotography15 (4 of 1)

Cause next thing is that it’s the winter again, a whole new year of urgent.

 

 

BFF, High School Senior Yearbook Portraits

Walking in to preschool, going to a dance, experiencing High School, everything is better with a friend. The same is true for getting your pictures made!

dsc_5978Sessions with me are laid back. I have an easy approach and encourage movement or play, dsc_5792but evendsc_5830 I have to acknowledge that nobody except a Kardashian is instantly comfortable in front of a camera.

I coach how you stand and pay attention to how the light is hitting you to avoid shadows and contour you correctly.

Conversation however, is what brings the twinkle into your eye.

dsc_5813Nervous about being photographed? Roping in your best friend and sharing the session will ease you and bring on more ideas.dsc_5779

Not to mention how your buddy can make you laugh and be natural.dsc_6028

 

More importantly, being photographed with the one person that has your back in high school creates souvenirs to cherish when your Facebook time hops or your Instagram scrolls.

And these Best Friend sessions aren’t just for teens and high school seniors.  They aren’t often considered, but just like families that want to mark the day together, having a buddy along brings out the true you.

Images are a reminder of how much you’ve been through together and how lucky you are that they are in your life.  Who doesn’t need that?

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So aside from images together, you’ll see images that match your buddy’s and individual unique shots too.

Class of 2017, it’s not too late to make the yearbook if you were putting it off. Class of 2018, it’s not too early to start booking.

Had so much fun with these gals. Was delighted to receive their image of me taking this one. : )

Visiting Family – South Windsor CT Family Photographer

Family visiting from out of town? A perfect excuse to have images made!
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Fleeting nature of a family reunion gives just one chance to capture these important moments before the party is over and everyone goes back to growing up. With an extended family session, you now have an online gallery to share and reconnect over before a single thing is printed.

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Photography adds value to the memory bringing alive the story of your family. Family sessions come with an online gallery to share with each other.

So even if you live in Iowa, California or Canada, you will get to see your images and prints can be made.

Typically, there is one family organizer who coordinates a meet time and location. A family member’s home or local park works just great. I’ll send suggestions for clothing and images so everyone is on the same page. Typically, the family contact makes sure I have all the email addresses.

Images are made of the family all together, cousins, siblings, then the individual families.

If someone isn’t into it, we go to another family and come back. I’ll take couples alone if they like and insist on one of the grandparents. This all happens in about an hour. I’m wedding trained. Posing and playing happens fast.

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Typically within a week, I’ll have a link ready to share the gallery of images online for those who have traveled. If you are local, I swing by as my time is included. From there
depending on package there is a discussion about favorites. Each family can pick their own images and products. I have helped a family create a matching wall gallery for each of their individual houses.

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We coordinate how the images will be used.

Some people would like to see a beautiful image of their family on the wall, others prefer the privacy of an album.

It’s also possible to have digital negatives so you can post your extended family to your social media. Or make a mug for Grandma.