Posts in Film Photography
What Is Modern Studio Photography? | Seattle Family Photographers

Studio photography used to be the industry standard. If you wanted a family photo, you went into a photo studio and had a portrait made.

That was how it was done—for years.

But styles change, and after a while, it became much more common for a family to meet their photographer in a park or in their own home.

When I started in the 1990s, the most popular style among family photographers was photojournalism, a move away from the traditional studio portrait.

That then gave way to lifestyle, which has since remained the norm. I however, have always LOVE the look of studio photography, and strive to provide my clients with something modern, but also classic.

So What Is Modern Studio Photography?

I think for many, the idea of studio photography recalls the days of over lit, over posed, department store photos.

That is NOT what you’ll get at my studio.

My approach to studio photography is much more modern.

I will never use props or pose your baby in an unnatural way. Instead, I aim to capture them as they are. I want their personality to shine through! And I feel that the simple look of studio portraits helps me do that!

When in the studio, your baby and your family are the focus…. not the location or the background.

My goal is to create images that will stand the test of time.

A modern twist on a classic look!

Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
How to Order Custom Photo Albums from Your Family or Newborn Session
millers signature albums custom photo albums seattle family photographer
Here we have an 8x12 album with a tundra linen cover, a 6x9 album with a blush leather cover and an accordion book album.

Here we have an 8x12 album with a tundra linen cover, a 6x9 album with a blush leather cover and an accordion book album.

It’s Important to Hold Your Photos

I am a BIG believer in being able to hold your photos. Call me old fashioned, but I think there’s something so special about being able to hold moments and memories in the palm of your hand. Plus, film just looks so beautiful on paper. That’s the main reason why ever single maternity, newborn and family session comes with a complementary set of 4x6 prints.

Another great way to create a tangible keepsake from your session is with custom photo albums! The cover of these albums are made of the highest quality fabrics, and the pages are thick and seamlessly printed on paper that’s meant to last several generations.

Products to Choose from

If you’re interested in ordering an album keepsake from your session, we have a few different options for you!

  • 6x9 hardcover custom photo album with linen or leather cover $750

  • 8x10 softcover custom photo album with photo cover $850

  • 8x12 hardcover custom photo album with linen or leather cover $950

  • Set of 3 accordion albums with black fabric covers $95

The custom photo albums also include a complete set of digital files! Please note, accordion albums do not.

How to Order

For ordering a hardcover album, we recommend favoriting up to 10 images from your gallery to be in your album (usually three horizontal and four to six vertical images work well). For a softcover album (the ones with the photo covers), we recommend favoriting up to 20 images from your gallery, or across multiple galleries if you did a session bundle. From there we will create custom album spreads for you to preview and approve. Please note, we allow up to two design tweaks per album.

For ordering an accordion album, we ask that you favorite 10-12 photos from your gallery.

Cover colors, materials and further customization

Once you’ve decided on the photos you want in your album, now it’s time to choose the cover! We offer several colors in two different materials, linen and leather. Our favorites at the studio are linen in tundra and leather in blush, as you can see below!

If you’re interested in further customization (such as adding text or debossing), we are happy to accommodate for a small fee.

Here are all the colors and materials we offer:

custom photo albums millers signature albums seattle family photographer
custom photo albums millers signature albums seattle family photographer
custom photo albums millers signature albums seattle family photographer

Simple, Beautiful and Fast

Once your album is ordered, it usually takes 1-2 weeks to arrive to your door for you and your family to enjoy for years to come.

millers signature albums custom photo albums seattle family photographer
millers signature albums custom photo albums seattle family photographer
millers signature albums custom photo albums seattle family photographer
What If Your Toddler Won't Cooperate At The Photo Shoot? | Seattle Family Photographer

I’m been a family photographer for almost twenty years.

Before that I was a preschool and kindergarten teacher.

I’m also a mother to twin boys.

At this point in my life I feel it’s safe to say that I “get” kids. And one thing that I know for sure is this… sometimes children, especially toddlers, don’t do what you want them to do!

Ha!

Shocking, I know!

I also know that this particular character trait can be REALLY frustrating, especially at a photoshoot! So let me tell you how I handle toddlers who do NOT want to cooperate.

I Never Force Them To Do Something They Don’t Want To Do

I have learned over the years that the best way to bring on a meltdown is to try to get a toddle to do something they don’t want to do. So if your toddlers is giving me a hard no, I will respect that.

What I’ve found is when we don’t force the issue, they usually come around.

For example, in the photos below, the mom really wanted a picture of her toddler with the new baby.

Her toddler however, was NOT interested.

So instead of forcing the issue. We just waited. Eventually he decided that he was a little curious about what we were doing. I asked him questions about himself and about the baby. Things like “can you show me where your ear is? Can you show me where the baby’s ear is?”… and eventually we get the shots!

I Try to Make The Photoshoot Fun

I always have lots of toys and things for your toddler to do at the studio. Most of the time, it takes older kids a few minutes to warm up to me, and having fun activities for them to engage with is a great way to get them loosened up and ready for pictures!

I Have LOTS of Stickers and Lollipops

Because a little bribery never hurts, I have a tons of stickers and lollipops on hand!

I Have a Sense of Humor

Like I said, I’ve worked with kids for a really long time. So if your child doesn’t cooperate or has a little melt down, please do not worry about me or what I think. I get it. I’m a mom too!

Remember, photos are meant to capture your child as they are now. There is now right and no wrong. And I’ve been doing this for a really long time… I’m confident that we will get photos you will love!

sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
sandra coan photography | seattle washington studio lighting and film photographer | baby and brother on bed and brother doesn't want to pose with new baby
How To Get the Most Out Of Your Maternity Photo Shoot | Seattle Maternity Photography
Seattle Maternity Photography Sandra Coan Black and White maternity images in studio

Pregnancy is an amazing time and there is no better way to celebrate it than with a portrait session!

To get the most out of your session however, there are a few things you should know.

When is the best time to come in for a maternity session?

It really just depends on how big you would like your baby bump to be in your photos.  I recommend, any time between 29 weeks to 36 weeks.

Just don’t wait too long, you’d hate to go into labor and miss your shoot.  And yes, this happens!

Try to avoid wearing anything that will leave a mark

When we’re pregnant, our bodies retain a lot of extra fluid which means things like elastic waistbands, socks and elastic hair bands worn around your wrist will leave a mark on your skin.  We want you skin to look as smooth as possible, so avoid anything elastic!

The tighter the better

Loose maternity clothing is super comfortable, but doesn’t always look great in photos.  When it come to your maternity portraits, remember, the tighter the clothes, the better! We want to show off that belly!

Don’t be afraid to show some skin

Nude and semi nude maternity images are often my favorite!  I have all the fabric we need for draping and will always photograph you in a tasteful and beautiful way!  So take advantage of the studio setting, and show a little skin!

Husbands, partners, kids and wives…. The more the merrier

I’m often ask if other family members can be in some of the photos and the answer is YES!  These are your portraits and your moment to celebrate this amazing time in your life. So you can include anyone you would like to in your photos!

Seattle Maternity Photography Sandra Coan Black and White maternity images of woman wearing a tight black dress in studio
Seattle Maternity Photography Sandra Coan Black and White maternity image of a couple together in studio
Seattle Maternity Photography Sandra Coan Black and White maternity photo profile of a woman in studio
What to Wear for Babies and Kids | Seattle Studio Photography

I frequently get emails and questions from clients about what to wear or how to dress their kids for their studio session with me. If you're a photographer, I'm sure you can relate! And as a parent, I totally get it. Although my boys dress themselves and have for a while now, figuring out outfits for families can be tough. 

So, we've put together a roundup of some of our favorite outfits and clothing items we've seen in the studio for 2018 so far. 

You can also find more outfit inspiration by heading over to my Pinterest page!

seattle studio photographer what to wear family photography how to dress your kids | sandra coan photography

Simple white onesie with an adorable winter hat.

seattle studio photographer what to wear family photography how to dress your kids | sandra coan photography
seattle studio photographer what to wear family photography how to dress your kids | sandra coan photography

Simple neutrals, matching dresses and cute headbands. 

what to wear for your studio session with sandra coan photography sisters in matching blue dresses

More matching! Three sisters in light blue dresses.

what to wear to your studio session with sandra coan photography seattle baby photographer

Whites and pastels are always a good idea. And bows!

pink seersucker dress studio portrait seattle photographer sandra coan
light blue seersucker overalls studio photography in seattle | sandra coan family photography

Seersucker always looks so cute! And I love the pastel colors.

light blue seersucker overalls | seattle family studio photography sandra coan

The sweetest light blue, seersucker overalls. Those button details!!

what to wear studio photography seattle family photographer sandra coan
what to wear seattle studio photography sandra coan

More colorful, patterned outfits look great on film as well! I love that these siblings went with coordinating outfits as opposed to perfectly matching.

sandra coan photography what to wear to the studio for babies and kids
sandra coan photography what to wear to the studio seattle family photographer
sandra coan photography what to wear to the studio seattle family photographer

Give me all the cute baby headbands and simple dresses!

sandra coan photography what to wear to the studio seattle family photographer
sandra coan photography what to wear to the studio seattle family photographer

Both of these dresses are so fun and show so much personality. Plus, outfit changes during studio sessions are totally worth it!

 

I hope you find these outfits to be good inspiration for your next studio session!

These were just a few of our favorites we've seen so far in 2018. Let the cuteness continue!

Six Month Olds Are So Awesome | Seattle Family Photographer
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film

Do you know what I love about six month old babies? 

Just about everything! 

For real, this is one of my favorite ages to work with.  They are so engaged, so curious about their surroundings, and almost always ready to great me with a big ol' baby smile!

So today, I want to take a minute to talk about the awesomeness of this age as well as answer some of the most common questions I get about how to prepare and when to book.

How to Dress The Baby

When it comes to dressing your baby for their session I believe less is more.  A diaper (so we can see all that glorious baby skin!) or plain white onsie are my favorites.  Hats are also really cute!  If you have a favorite outfit, bring that as well.  There are no rules!  What ever you love seeing your baby in is the perfect outfit!

When To Book

I call the mid-way through the first year the "Six Month Photo Session" but please know your baby doesn't have to be exactly six months old.  I tell my clients to book when your baby can sit on his/her own but is not yet crawling.  For most babies this is between 5 and 8 months.  

What To Expect

Out of all my photo sessions, the six month session tend to be the quickest.  Babies this age are so fun and engaged.  They come in all smiles!  They clap along when I sing.  They laugh and giggle.  We have a blast!  But they also get tired pretty fast!  I keep this in mind when working with them and do my best to be efficient with our time!  My goal is to keep your baby (and you) happy and engaged for the entire shoot!

Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | baby with giraffe toy photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | mother and baby kiss photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | Babies photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | family portrait photographed on film
Newborn photographer Seattle | Sandra Coan | family portrait photographed on film
The Power of One Photo | Seattle Maternity Photographer
seattle fine art maternity photography by Sandra Coan

I started my career 17 years ago with a maternity photo of my dear friend Ginger.  We shot three rolls of film and ended up with one perfect photo that we both loved.  I used that one photo to launch my business.  It was the face of Sandra Coan Photography for years.  

Back then, it was common for a person to go into a photo studio with the expectation of getting one great photo.  Over the years, that expectation has changed.  Now it's more common for people to come in for a session and expect 50 great photos.  And while I totally get it (I love all the photos too) I would argue that there is power in just one great image.  

The Problem With Many Photos

Here is how I see it.  When you have many photos, they are often times forgotten.  They sit in your cloud storage.  Maybe a few, if they are lucky, will end up on Facebook or on your Holiday card.  But most of the time, all those photos are never seen.  They get lost.  And I think that is a shame.

The Power Of One Photo

When you have one photo however, the dynamic shifts.  It becomes special and the way you look at it changes.  You hang it on your wall.  You share it with your family.  It becomes an heirloom for future generations. 

When you have just one photo, the photo becomes a story in and of itself.  It tells us something about the person and who they are in that moment.  It becomes a portrait in the truest sense of the word.

What You Can Expect From Me

When you come in for a photoshoot with me, I will take lots of photos and give you many to choose from.  But my goal is that you will find one GREAT one.  One that will become your story, your heirloom.  One that you will hang on your wall.

My goal is to create a portrait.  It's what I love to do.  And I can't wait to do it for you.

Exciting News! Film Week on Creative Live | Sandra Coan Photography
Sandra Coan Photography Creative Live

For the past few months I've been working with some awesome folks at CreativeLive to write and produce not one but TWO online classes about my favorite thing: film!! CreativeLive is an online broadcast platform specializing in education webinars about tons of topics in different creative fields and I get to have two of my very own film classes later this month! Can you tell I'm excited?!

The Classes

On August 21st (8/21), I'll be teaching an Introduction to Film Photography during which I'll show you how to slow down during your photo shoot, focus on what you’re trying to capture, and ultimately get a great image straight out of camera.

On August 23rd (8/23), I'll have a Film Photography with Strobes class that will cover everything to give you the knowledge to start taking portraits with your film camera and strobes.

The Live Shows

The coolest (and most nerve racking!) thing about CreativeLive? Both of these classes will be recorded LIVE in front of an audience in the Seattle studios and then will be available for you to download and keep forever. Are you interested in being a part of the audience on August 21st or August 23rd at the CreativeLive South Lake Union studio? Follow this link to sign up!! The event is free to attend but spots are limited.

Sign Up Today!

Can't make it to the studio? Too busy for the live stream? No problem!! These classes will be broadcasted and recorded live and will be available for download on my very own CreativeLive page.  

Follow this link to sign up!

I'm so excited!!