Apple Blossom Photos in Ottawa - May's the Month for that!

Spring Family Photo Sessions - Ottawa Professional Photographer

May is probably the perfect month of the year. It's getting warmer, and I get excited every year when I see those tulips (the tulip festival starts next week in Ottawa) and daffodils start to poke out of the ground. 

In May, we can just taste summer being right around the corner. Let's not forget thunderstorms, and the smell of rain. Makes me smile just thinking about it. It's also one damn fine month to take professional family photos! 

The apple blossoms start to bloom in mid-May, but those little buggers can be a tad unpredictable. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you're thinking of getting photos taken.

Apple Blossoms Ottawa Arboretum

1. Be Flexible with your Schedule

I wish Mother Nature and I had a tighter relationship, but we don't. She won't tell me exactly when the trees will bloom. It is what it is. So I always tell my clients that if they are dead set on having blossoms in their photos that they must be flexible with scheduling. For photographers, it's actually a matter of checking almost daily at one point, to see if the trees are blooming. We all gather on Facebook groups and ask each other "Hey, are the trees in bloom at the Arboretum yet"? It's true. 

This photo above was taken on May 20th of last year. I use that as a starting point to try to figure out when the trees will be in bloom this year. This year's weather and climate is really throwing me for a loop though! I'm hoping for somewhere between May 19th and 26th, but I can't be sure. Again, Mother Nature and I aren't that close. 


2. Wind and Heavy Rain

This one feeds off of my first point. I keep an eye on the weather forecast like a raptor with it's eye on it's prey. For example. if the trees are in bloom but I see that there is a big storm coming in 3 days, those blossoms will be coming down permanently. Which means, any sessions booked on or after that date, will be rescheduled within those 3 days prior to the storm (of course this is only if my client absolutely wants blossoms in their shots, otherwise we can reschedule to another date later in the week or month). Weather happens.

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3. Mother's Day

A lot of moms out there love family photos. Even photos of just them and their kids, or just a beautiful individual portrait too.  Imagine how happy she would be to open her Mother's Day card to read that she's getting a family photography session. Plus, the session is more like a scheduled hour of play time with the kids than a photo session. 

4. Magnolias

These beauties typically bloom just before the apple blossoms. The Arboretum has plenty of magnolias there, and with all the space for kids to run around, it makes a good alternative to apple blossoms. 


5. Colour

With blooming trees and flowering gardens, there is no shortage of colours around in May. Fall is perfect for earthy and warm tones, and spring is perfect for vibrant tones. Ottawa is swimming with tulip gardens, and is there anything that looks or smells better than a lilac tree in bloom? 

6. Temperature

What was it about Goldilocks and her porridge? She wanted it not too hot, not too cold, but just right. That's the month of May! 


7. No Bugs

Well, perhaps SOME bugs, but not as much as in summer. I do believe that ticks are out already, so whether you go get photos taken or you just go out with your family for some good nature fun, be sure to protect yourselves.


What else can you think of that makes May a great month for photos? Tell me in the comments, that'll be great for next year's blog!

Spring is here in Ottawa! Enjoy the beautiful weather with your loved ones, and create some new memories. 


Top 10 Favourite Images of 2016!

I really think it's important to get a few couple shots when the opportunity arises. This was an early morning session, and the light was just perfect. They were just as warm and cozy with each other as the sun behind them! 

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The Value of a Printed Photograph

Ottawa Family Photographer - Zombie Apocalypse? Grab Your Photos!

As a professional photographer, I have thousands of photos of my family. Ok, so maybe that's a tad of an understatement. Like everyone, I have those adorable moments of my kids in the bathtub when they put bubbles on their head, to the crazy moments when they're goofing around and all you can hear are those really heavy belly laughs. The ones that make it impossible not to smile and laugh right along with them. But, how do you ensure you have those photos forever? 

Now, humour me for just a moment while I explain the value of a printed photograph. Any fans of The Walking Dead out there? Ok, yes, I can be a bit of a zombie apocalypse geek, but hear me out. In episode 1 of the 1st season, Rick Grimes, the lead character in one of the most brilliant television series ever written, leaves the hospital after waking from a coma and eventually walks to his home in this new "walker" infested world. He arrives to see that his wife and son are gone. Drawers were opened with clothes strewn about indicating that they left in a hurry. What else did they take with them when they left? Their PHOTOS! I think you get my point! 

My 4 year old daughter admiring a photo of me as a child. She loved noticing how much we look alike! 

Having said that, do you have organized folders on your hard drive? What if your hard drive crashes or gets a virus? Do you have a back up with an online storage provider? Do you have a back-up on CD? What about when CD's become obsolete? The one way to ensure you have these special family heirlooms forever is to print! Print your images and make an album, or get a photo book. Get some canvases for your walls...whatever it is...get some prints. Don't forget to get prints for other family members as well.

Back home, my parents have a lovely shelf with at least a dozen photo albums. Not to mention, drawers in a filing cabinet full of prints as well. I can't tell you the number of times I've looked through those albums when I visit. Other family members have as well. It's so easy to grab an album off the shelf. However, do you think you'll ever sit in front of a computer years from now, sift through a hard drive to find those photos and go through them with your kids and grandkids on your lap? Probably not. 

So, what about the devastating possibility of a house fire? Well, that would indeed be devastating. You'll lose those images on print and on your drive or CD's. This very thing happened to my husband's family when he was a teen. All those photos of his childhood, gone in the blink of an eye. Thankfully, other family members also had great photos of him as a child. Not ALL was lost. So don't forget, make albums for grandma and grandpa too! 

A printed photograph is more than just a piece of paper. It's a memory. It's a feeling. It's a family heirloom, passed down through generations. 

Please print! You'll be so happy you did.

A printed photo of my mother and I sleeping from around 1980. To the right, a photo of my own daughter and I sleeping soundly together....the difference is, mine is trapped in my smartphone!