blog_header

Personal

Jane and Sebbie in NYC

05.12.2010

A few weeks ago I took our 6 year old Sebbie into New York for an overnighter to spend some one-on-one time together.  It was one of the best times we’ve ever had and I really want to do more trips like this.

We checked out MoMA where we saw Picasso and the Tim Burton exhibit and I raced through the Cartier-Bresson photo exhibit.  Then it was off to the the Central Park Zoo for some penguin time.

Thanks Megan and Bret for the tip on Serendipity 3 (…home of the frozen hot chocolate!) and thanks to Kathleen for the advice on seeing the Central Park playgrounds!

Here are a few snaps from our trip…love you Sebbie!

Central Park Zoo in NYC


Angela’s Family Portrait in Fort Myers, Florida

03.22.2010

It was great to do a portrait shoot of my wonderful friend Angela and her family while staying with them for a few days during our family vacation to Florida. One of my first family portrait sessions was when these sweet kids were 5 months old…it’s hard to believe that Mike and I now have our own family and that our kids have a great time playing together!  Ang–great seeing you guys…so glad you are in our life!

Angela Family Portrait



Vegas Baby – WPPI and Nikki Nicole!

03.19.2010

I (Jane) just returned from an amazing time at WPPI in Las Vegas…the biggest wedding photography convention and seminar in the world.  It was fabulous for so many reasons including hanging out with a group of wonderfully talented CT wedding photographers, finding some new products for our clients and taking time to think about art and not just business.

Here’s a little sampling of some fun shots of Nikki Nicole from Nikki Nicole Photography and two Australian guys who we met Fremont Street in the old downtown LV who agreed to be our models…only in Vegas!

If you want to see the pics of me on the dance floor at Studio 54′s Pictage party or more pics of Nikki Nicole, I’ll be posting them on Facebook … Jane Shauck for my everyday ramblings (and Vegas party pics) and the IRIS Photography Fan Page for official business!  : )

nikki nicole photography


Shower Studio

01.21.2010

Here’s our little four year old Jude.  In the mood for shooting a portrait…a shower stall can make a cool background…

IMG_4914.jpg



Foodie Stuff in Connecticut and New York

01.05.2010

Jane and I love food and wine so in between photo news we wanted to write some food-related posts….here are three items to kick it off:

First, for my recent birthday Jane gave me the new Barcelona Cookbook written by the the owners of the Barcelona Wine Bar tapas restaurant group in Connecticut.  It’s a nicely written and photographed book with a great wine section in addition to the tapas recipes.  Jane also booked a date to go to Barcelona in West Hartford Center to a “Cook the Book” night hosted by Executive Chef Adam Greenberg.  We and 40 others enjoyed everything from his potato latkes with applesauce to the churros with chili-chocolate dipping sauce.  Barcelona also has restaurants in Greenwich, Stamford, South Norwalk, Fairfield and New Haven…they’ve got a very cool urban and relaxed atmosphere along with great tapas and wine…and live music some nights.

IMG_2234T.jpg

Second, Jessica and James Vanderberg, the very talented and fun couple whose wedding we photographed at the Hill-Stead Museum in ’08 have started an outstanding  foodie blog called “Plated” out of their Brooklyn home.
“Plated” features classic and eclectic recipes as well as dinner parties that you can sign up on their blog to attend.  Jessica and James (photo below) are great writers and their love of food, wine, traveling and people really shines through in their blog.  Check them out at http://brooklynplated.wordpress.com.

Plated

Lastly, I love food markets and I’ve been meaning to check out Hartford’s own CT Regional Market down under the highways past the old Colt Firearms factory (the address is 101 Reserve Road).  A few Saturdays back I headed down there at 6am and 15 degrees and saw a small group of customers shopping at several of the mostly fruit and vegetable purveyors selling from their shipping docks.  Even within this small group in 30 minutes I met people from Bosnia, Portugal and Jamaica…highlights the great diversity of recent immigrants in the Hartford area.

jessica james dance



In NYC for PhotoPlus Expo

10.28.2009

Jane and I went into NYC last week for the PDN PhotoPlus Expothe tradeshow and conference for all things photographic. Walking to the Javits Center, we saw a NYC scene in great light and Jane snapped a photo of a painter enjoying his java before starting work.

Good classes, especially the Adobe Lightroom session and great keynotes by Nigel Parry on his celebrity portraits and James Nachtwey on his photojournalism over the past 25 years.

Went to The Ten Bells for wine and tapas down on Broome Street just north of Chinatown before heading to the PDN party in the Hammerstein Ballroom where we met some new photogs and had a blast with old PUG friends.

Checked out Robert Frank’s The Americans photo exhibit at the Met of his trek around the US in the 1950s–great stuff.  Stopped at Anthony Bourdain’s old workplace, Les Halles, for a bistro bite before heading out of Penn Station (albeit 3.5 hours late due to lightning strikes) for home in Hartford…but today we got a call from Amtrak with free train tickets due to the delay!



LIVE with Regis and Kelly…and Jen and Jane!!

02.17.2009

Speaking of the Mayor's Ball, last year we attended with a group of friends and my friend, Jen and I bid on VIP tickets to see Live with Regis and Kelly in NYC.  Being VIP means you can pick which day you want to go and we went just before the holidays.  Daniel Craig (yes, James Bond) was the guest star and I have to admit, quite charming in person. David Archuleta was the musical guest who we also happened to see the night before in the Virgin store in Times Square:

Blogfinal0106

Well you've got to get up early for this type of thing….

Blogfinal0300

Here we are post-coffee waiting in the line (yes, even with the VIP tickets…although we had a shorter line!)

Blogfinal0301

A big perk of VIP tix was front row…here's Jen waiting for it to start:
 
Blogfinal0107

Kelly was amazing how quickly she could turn on bubbly at 8 a.m. … there was no warm-up…they just went right into their high energy banter:

Blogfinal0304 

Blogfinal0202

Blogfinal0405 

All the talk shows are a great time and I can be talked into an NYC trip for any reason…one of my goals is to get to SNL though…maybe this fall!

 



Family Day Trip to the Eric Carle Museum in Amherst

02.08.2009

Our family recently discovered a great day trip going to the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts.  It was about an hour from West Hartford and perfect for kids around 5 or 6 years old, although younger and older would really enjoy it too.  They had galleries, an art studio where everyone could paint, a library with story hour and a really well done movie about Eric Carle and how he creates the pictures (we're talking Hungry Caterpillar here in case you aren't in this world right now) – the movie was a little over the head of our 3-year-old but held Seb's interest (and all the adults!).  Two to three hours was about the right amount of time with young kids in tow.  The facility is beautiful…open, light, very modern and spacious.  They also had a lovely, kid-friendly cafe.   I think it's a great museum for introducing kids to art or could be a nice date if you are still a fan of children's books/art and want to take a nice drive too!

Blogfinal0401 

Blogfinal0400

 Blogfinal0202

 
 


 



Holiday in the Florida Keys with a $13.99 Underwater Camera

01.10.2009

Well we may be too young to be snowbirders yet but we LOVED spending the holidays with my family in Cudjoe Key, which is about 20 minutes north of Key West…12 days of 70-80 degree weather!

As I thought about what camera to take, I just kept thinking water/sand/water/sand…not great for a professional DSLR, so we opted instead to buy two $13.99 underwater disposable cameras…54 pictures total, and we actually found that we loved the picture quality that came out (when we did it right) and the freedom of not worrying about destroying it! 

These are almost all straight out of the camera (except the Dennys and beer goggles photos) and I think they have a dreamy quality and a natural vignette…kind of like the Diana cameras.  As I order our new $2799.00 Canon 5D Mark II (body only…ouch)  this weekend for the 2009 wedding season, I'm wondering if we can just get by with these at the weddings :)…kidding, but actually, maybe we'll bring a few to a wedding this summer….we'll see.

Here are Sebbie and my brother, John, who just moved to London …it was great that he and his wife, Rei, could make it over!  This was at our closest beach, Bahia Honda, but we call it Portuguese-Man-of-War Beach!

1

Brothers, Sebbie and Jude…

2

5

3

4

Mike and I had "date afternoon" with my folks watching the kids, and walked all over Key West. 

6

We met a few characters…if you can't see it, his glasses say "beer goggles"…if you are interested in photography, I think it's great practice to ask strangers if you can photograph them…when you are not comfortable doing that (and it is still uncomfortable for me!), you miss pictures and think about the ones that got away! 

8a
 

What do you do when your kids get up at 6am in a house full of
sleepers…go to Denny's!  This one is right near mile marker zero of
Route 1 that runs from Key West to Fort Kent Maine.

7a

We went on the Caribbean Spirit, a huge catamaran for a four hour cruise out to the coral reef for some snorkeling and Sangria.  The water is a little cold this time of year…think CT in early August!  :) so a wetsuit (shorty) made it perfect! 

9

10

Jude stayed on board and ate about 15 oreos:

11

Sebbie braved the swells to try some open ocean snorkeling and crashed immediately after:

12

We decided to go deep sea fishing on Christmas Eve.  Grandpa Dean had never been and hoped to catch a big sailfish, which was what was running this time of year.  Mike and I have been a number of times and joke that we always catch the most expensive small fish we will ever eat.  I am also notorious for catching things that shouldn't be caught like pretty reef fish, crabs, cuttlefish, etc.  We've been in the English Channel many times, Key Largo, Lake Huron, etc., so this time we were psyched to get a big fish!

Well, Grandpa Dean made the first big catch….yes, that's a seagull.  The seagull dove for his bait and is actually attached to the line in this photo as the 1st mate helps reel it in! 

13.

14

We did get the hook out and he flew away unharmed, but of course I made Dean pose with his first catch! 

15

Unfortunately, no sailfish today.  In fact, these were the only two keepers and our dinner…the two most expensive Yellowtail ever caught!

16

Great trip though! 

Here are some tips about using underwater disposable cameras:

1)  Disposable cameras are optimized to focus at about 5-7 feet (my estimation, not fact)…you can see where I was too close for sharpness in several of the shots (although I kind of like them anyway).  So when you are shooting…back up a bit!

2)  With any camera, it's all about enough light for quality…taking the pics in bright sunshine provided the best quality.  However, the Denny's and beer goggles shots still came out it the dark but very faint and grainy.  I improved the pics in Photoshop, but here you can see how it came out of the camera:

8

3)  Underwater…yeah, my one underwater picture didn't turn out in the turbulent ocean!  They do work better in pools or if there's a ton of light streaming into the ocean…. I did use one of these cameras for Lindsay's (of Sixpence Events) pool maternity shoot and an image is going in her album…so it's really about experimentation!  

Well that was "what I did on my holiday" and we've started our new resolution…to blog more!!!!

Happy New Year!



Happy Holidays from Florida!

12.21.2008

Just wanted to say happy holidays to all our friends, family and clients this year!  We've had a wonderful year personally and professionally and are looking forward to 2009!  Our New Year's Resolution is to blog more so forgive us if we catch up in January with fall portraits and Halloween!  We're spending the holidays in Florida with family and are only shooting with $13.99 underwater disposable cameras … side note…it's interesting how approachable people are with that kind of camera…so, maybe we'll have something to share when we get back after we get our Kodak discs back from CVS!  We'll be back the week of 12/29…looking forward to seeing everyone in the new year!