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Lauren – First Birthday Portraits and Cake Smash

Lauren used to live on West Point here in the Hudson Valley NY but her family relocated to Virginia when she was about 6 months old – imagine my surprise when her parents told me that they wanted to book a photography session for her first birthday portraits and cake smash! I had photographed Lauren’s newborn photo session and her parents couldn’t imagine going to anyone else. Honored isn’t even close to the right word. I was completely blown away.

 

We started off a touch shy with our First Birthday Portraits…

Lauren first birthday baby portrait photography Hudson Valley NY

Lauren showed off her new milestone – she had recently started walking!

First birthday baby portrait photography walking milestone Hudson Valley NY photographer

first birthday pictures in the Hudson Valley by Cornwall NY photographer

Time for a good ol’ cake smash!

cake by Adam’s Fairacre Farms in Newburgh, NY

first birthday cake smash photographer in the Hudson Valley NY

I personalize my photography sets based on colors that the parents choose and the style they are looking for. Lauren’s mom shared with me the outfits she had bought for her to wear on Etsy.com and liked the white wood look so we went with purple, white and turquoise for her cake smash photos.

cake smash first birthday photography Hudson Valley NY baby photographer

I think she likes it…

first birthday cake smash photographer Hudson Valley NY

Lauren is SUCH a big girl that she already prefers to eat with a fork! She was a little upset about eating with her hands and needed some Daddy snuggles.

cake smash baby crying photos Hudson Valley NY

While she waited for a fork to eat her cake with, Lauren decided that her necklace would work just fine.

Hudson Valley NY first birthday and cake smash photographer

Ah, yes, this is much better.

happy first birthday cake smash photos West Point Hudson Valley NY photographer

So happy! Look at this little model!

cake smash first birthday pictures Hudson Valley NY professional baby photographer

Hudson Valley NY first birthday cake smash photography

One of my favorite images from Lauren’s cake smash – look at those amazing eyes! Such a beautiful baby!

Hudson Valley cake smash first birthday portraits by professional baby photographer Autumn Photography in Cornwall NY photo studio

Now THAT is a happy baby!

cake smash first birthday photography in the Hudson Valley NY

Oh, hey, there! The cake? I don’t know what happened to it.

first birthday cake smash pictures by Hudson Valley professional baby photographer Autumn Photography in Cornwall NY photo studio

A fork! Finally! Thank you! Now I can shovel the cake into my mouth instead of in my hair!

West Point NY first birthday portraits and cake smash by Hudson Valley photographer Autumn Photography in Cornwall photo studio

I want more cake! I can’t help it – I have to get the crying photos too – they’re so pitifully sweet.

crying cake smash baby first birthday photography Hudson Valley NY photographer

…aaaaaaand we’re doing great again. Watching her eat her cake with a fork was just the best!

West Point NY hudson valley cake smash first birthday photographer

Lauren apparently shares my love of painting…

My preferred medium is not typically cake icing or finger painting but it’s cool.

finger painting cake smash first birthday photography in the Hudson Valley by professional baby photographer in Cornwall NY photo studio

 

V&G- I seriously cannot thank you enough for choosing me to photograph Lauren’s first birthday portraits and cake smash – especially since you’ve moved so far away! I am beyond honored and I loved seeing you all again and getting to see what an amazing personality she has. It means the world to me that you came all the way up to the Hudson Valley to have me be your photographer again! <3

First birthday – Celebrating incredible baby girl Sophia

Praying for baby

While some pregnant moms are praying for their baby to come early, hoping for some relief from the maternity back pain and water weight or they are just anxious to snuggle their newborn baby, many expectant mothers are praying that baby will stay put for at least a few more weeks. Sophia’s mom fell in the latter category but now, a year later, we’re celebrating this incredible little girl’s first birthday!

 

Sophia was born at only 28 weeks and spent a very long time in the NICU as you can imagine.

 

While she’s still quite a petite little one, she amazed me with her big personality and how well she was doing with her milestones!

baby girl first birthday photography

To celebrate her first birthday, Sophia’s mom had some ideas on making her portraits more meaningful for this amazing little girl, this miracle baby.

Including her first teddy bear that at one time was much larger than her…

baby girl first birthday photo Hudson Valley

Can you believe that she was once much smaller than her teddy bear?! Sweet Sophia is wearing 6 month clothing now!

 

Mom wanted a photo of Sophia standing in her beautiful Manolo wedding shoes… it didn’t quite go as mom planned but that expression is just priceless!

first birthday baby girl with Manolo shoes

 

and some things to go with their very special first birthday theme ‘Oh, the places you’ll go’… Mom loved a vintage look so I created a set to go with the theme…

vintage look baby's first birthday photos oh the places you'll go theme

And of course we had to include her favorite book… which apparently was quite tasty.

first birthday baby portraits Hudson Valley NY photographer

Something girly but simple to show off that sweet, innocent baby face…

baby crawling first birthday photography Hudson Valley NY

This singing and dancing baby doll makes Sophia smile and laugh like nothing else so we had to include her favorite toy!

First birthday baby photos with her favorite toy in the Hudson Valley NY

When I asked about a cake smash, mom wanted something more unique for her special baby girl so I suggested finger painting instead. =)

first birthday finger painting photos Hudson Valley baby photographer

finger painting first birthday portraits Hudson Valley NY baby photographer

I am so glad to have met this amazing baby girl! She may be tiny but she is fierce! What a fighter this little one is… I was astonished that she’s so close to standing on her own already given how premature she was. I am so honored to have been a part of capturing just a little part of what makes her so special and learned about her story. Thank you to mom who shared Sophia’s NICU photos with me as well – I had a rough pregnancy and my daughter was born early – it really does help you put everything else into perspective and makes you realize just how lucky you are.

Newborn Baby Photographer in the Hudson Valley NY- twins Jordyn and Jaxson and big brother Bryson

Newborn Baby Photographer in the Hudson Valley NY – photography of twins Jordyn and Jaxson

Newborn baby twins Jordyn and Jaxson were welcomed by big brother Bryson and their amazing mom and dad, Laurie and Sean. I love when clients become friends. This is another family which started out as wedding clients and grew into friends who are very dear to my heart. To say that I was thrilled to find out that they were not only expecting another baby, but expecting TWINS would be an understatement. This family has been through a lot of ups and downs and I can’t tell you how happy I was to get the great news from them. They live in Ramsey, NJ but made the trip with their newborn baby twins to me to ensure I would be their newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY… at least they were much closer than when Bryson was born!

 

Bryson – big brother to newborn twins

newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY - twins and family photo

Sweet Bryson… he was not really having being a part of family photos until we tried to get just Mom and Dad with the babies… then he snuck back in ever so sweetly. <3

Big brother and newborn baby twins newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY

Oh, Bryson, you crack me up! He’s such a flirt!

 

Twins Jordyn and Jaxson snuggle up for Newborn Baby Photographer in the Hudson Valley NY, Autumn Photography in Cornwall NY

twins newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY

So snuggly.

boy and girl twins newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY

Boy and girl twins - newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY

The twins’ nursery is decorated with grey, white, blue and pink so we customized a set up for portraits to hang in their room.

 

While I love to keep things simple and neutral, sentimental props are always welcomed. Autumn Photography offers custom sessions by default – you tell me what is most important to you and I’ll work with it while keeping with the style that drew you to me.

newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY - twins on a handmade quilt in a rustic barnwood crate

Ah, they love my ‘triplet tray’ that I designed and my husband built for a triplet session. Okay, really they are so peaceful because they are snuggled up on a very special blanket – a handmade quilt made of their late grandpa’s shirts. <3 I wish Bryan were here to snuggle his grandchildren but I know he’s watching over them and visiting often.

newborn baby photographer in the Hudson Valley NY - twins with special book prop

Laurie requested a photo of the twins with this book as well – also a sentimental prop. <3

 

Photographing newborn babies is not easy work… add multiples and it gets much harder. While I have photographed many sets of twins and multiples, I think that this was the easiest yet – probably because mom and dad are so amazing! 😉 I always find that when parents can relax during their Hudson Valley NY newborn baby photography session things go much more smoothly… though it’s tough to really relax with big brother in the mix, he’s a great kid and the parents trust me – that trust is SO very important when you are handing your newborn baby over!

 

I am so overjoyed for you all and it is so wonderful to watch your family grow and see what incredible parents you are! Love you guys! <3

Book your newborn baby photos with Hudson Valley Professional Photographer Autumn Photography today! Located in a large studio in Cornwall, NY just off of Main Street (with dedicated parking!), Autumn has quickly become the favorite for discerning West Point moms who love modern, pure, timeless photography and value fine art heirloom portraits.

 

Newborn baby photo sessions are limited to 3 due dates per week to ensure guaranteed availability – it is recommended that you reserve your session at least 2 months in advance of your due date to ensure availability in the ideal time of 8-12 days old.

 

To book your Hudson Valley NY Newborn Baby Photography Session, contact me at info@autumn-photography.com or at 845-787-4492. Visit my website at www.autumn-photography.com for more information.

Luca – a very special little model

This journey started back in 2009, very shortly after I moved to the Hudson Valley, when Luca’s parents, Melissa and Mark, reached out to me to photograph their engagement session at Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park and wedding photography at The Links at Union Vale in Lagrangeville. I got to know them, as I try to with all of my clients, and learned that they had struggled with conceiving. On their wedding day I arrived at the house to photograph Melissa getting ready and she told me that she had recently learned she was pregnant! We hugged and cried together and I couldn’t have been happier for them. It’s been almost 7 years and they now have 4 children, the youngest being Luca.

Children's photography in the Hudson Valley NY of Luca Schneider - gastroparesis

I was teaching a one on one photography basics class recently and my ‘student’ had a goal of taking better photos of her 1 year old granddaughter. I spent the afternoon teaching her about the different functions of her camera and what they do, we practiced a lot and then it was time for some real life experience. I needed a model and I couldn’t think of anyone more deserving of a free session than Luca. I could only see one problem with this – Luca suffers from chronic illness and has good days and bad days… I was really hoping we would catch him on a good day (I hope that one day they will all be good days).

cute baby boy photos outside in the Hudson Valley NY

When they arrived, Melissa said that Luca was having a pretty good day but had fallen asleep in the car. He didn’t wake up in the happiest of moods but at least he wasn’t in pain.

Hudson Valley NY kids photography - Luca - gastroparesis - invisible disease

With Luca’s chronic illness, his Mom is always by his side. Unfortunately, this little guy’s health doesn’t allow him get out much unless it’s to go to the doctor or hospital. He takes quite a while to warm up, especially if he has just woken up! Thankfully we did manage to catch a few little smiles with Mom’s help! A guy after my own heart – he loves leaves too! 😉

kid's photos by Cornwall NY professional photographer in the Hudson Valley

baby boy photos of Luca by professional photographer Autumn Photography in the Hudson Valley - photo studio located in Cornwall NY

I asked Luca’s Mom, Melissa, if she would share some of his story – here it is in her own words:

 

“Luca became very sick when he was 2 months old. Each time he had formula, he would throw up. He would have episodes of inconsolable crying, arching and flailing and at times turn blue around his lips. His belly was always bloated and I knew he was suffering. We were told he was lactose intolerant and that he had reflux, but I knew they were wrong. I knew there was something wrong with my son. After being hospitalized twice in Morgan Stanley children’s hospital and tested from head to toe, given a feeding tube because he couldn’t keep anything down and kept losing weight, we finally got an answer. At 6 months old we were told they believed he had a motility disorder of delayed gastric emptying, know as gastroparesis. He was given medication to help pass food through his digestive tract and needed 2oz feedings every hour in order for him to keep it down. This worked for a month, but then he flared up. We were sent to Mass General Hospital in Boston. Boston has the top motility specialists. Luca went through more tests; gastric emptying scan which confirmed the gastroparesis, another endoscopy, and a colonoscopy which discovered that his sphincter muscle was completely shut and couldn’t pass anything through, so he had to receive a Botox injection. This worked for 6 months, and in November of this year, things have returned to him suffering. Luca’s belly is always bloated or distended. He cannot pass bowels normally, and the only food he can tolerate is eggs, Greek yogurt, prune and pear juice. The doctors believe that Luca now has what’s called pseudo obstruction motility disorder and will be returning to Morgan Stanley in the next two weeks to get an anorectal manometry to pinpoint which muscles in the gi tract aren’t working specifically. We will also be going back to Boston in the middle of April for another endoscopy and colonoscopy and possibly another Botox injection. There is NO cure for these motility disorders. Luca has good days and bad days, and he is starving to eat food, but his body can’t tolerate it. His muscles just don’t work to push everything through, they are “paralyzed” and he continues to suffer in excruciating pain. All we can do is try and give him a normal life as much as we can, and hope that one day they will find a cure. He is my hero and when he’s feeling good, he has the biggest smile and personality. Never judge someone for how they look on the outside, when you have no idea what is happening on the inside.

 

I ask that you please keep them in your thoughts and prayers and if you are so inclined, you can donate to help with Luca’s growing medical expenses at www.gofundme.com/lucajohn.

 

A spur of the moment shot of Luca and his amazing mom Melissa. <3

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”

Thank you, Melissa and Luca! <3

Remy – 9 days new and the best hair

If there were a contest for best newborn hair, I’m pretty sure that Remy would win it hands down!

 

Big brother Braxton was exploring the studio but I managed to not just direct his attention to his parents and baby sister, I captured this amazing smile and connection as well!

 

Remy was a little bit unsettled with her big brother running around but we managed to get some beautiful photos with mom and dad as well

Who doesn’t love a great sibling portrait with a newborn baby? Big brother Braxton loves his baby sister and had no problem smothering her with kisses for the photos!

For a little variety in sibling images, I decided to put Remy in a basket prop – pretty much as soon as she snuggled in there she fell sound asleep for the rest of her photo session!

Look at those lashes! SWOON!

Mom and Dad decided to add a little bit of soft pink girliness for Remy’s newborn photo session – I love the wool and vintage looking bonnet!

Baby toes!

Remy quite enjoyed the SUPER soft ‘nest’ I made for her photos… she even gave me a grin.

Thank you so much for trusting me to photograph your sweet newborn baby!

I only accept three due dates per week and guarantee availability for pre-booked newborn photo sessions. Contact me today to schedule a time to chat about customizing your Hudson Valley NY newborn baby photography session! Email me at info@autumn-photography.com or call me at 845-787-4492 to schedule your newborn photos!

Jasper – 9 days new

I have been SO terrible about updating my blog! =( It’s always the very last priority on my list and that thing that never gets checked off.

 

When Jasper’s mom and I first spoke on the phone several months ago, we hit it off immediately! We both have a love for rescue dogs (and Pets Alive) and she owns a dog boutique. We bonded over tattoos as well. 😉 I couldn’t wait to meet her and her little family and I was definitely not disappointed!

 

Sweet dreams.

 

Jasper quite enjoyed the rustic barnwood crate that my husband made – that amazing fuzzy wool and fur sure looks comfy too!

 

Those cheeks!

 

Cozy.

When mom has a ‘thing’ for birds, you make a nest for her ‘little baby bird’!

 

I think Jasper liked the newborn nest

 

There is nothing more magical than a mother’s love for her baby

 

Safe and sound. I love showcasing just how tiny new babies are in Daddy’s arms.

 

Thank you so much for allowing me to be your newborn photographer! I can’t wait to watch Jasper grow!

Pre-book your Hudson Valley newborn photography session before spots fill up! I limit myself to only three due dates per week to ensure that I can accommodate early and late arrivals in the ideal time of 1-2 weeks old. E-mail me at info@autumn-photography.com or give me a call at 845-787-4492 to chat about your custom newborn baby photography experience!

 

 

Caring for your images

A good friend of mine who is very well versed in art and has the most amazing collection of framed images in her home recently asked me for a replacement print for one that stuck to the glass of her frame and tore when she tried to switch out the frame. Wait, what? How could this be? I ordered a replacement print for her and let her know that prints should never touch glass – and this is exactly why. If she didn’t know this, I’m betting that most people don’t… so I thought I’d educate you!

 

No matter the media, it’s best to keep your images out of prolonged direct sunlight. Even with UV coatings and UV glass, prolonged exposure to direct sunlight will cause fading. Also, it is not a good idea to store them in an attic (gets too hot) or basement (moisture).

Framed prints

Prints should not touch the glass in a frame. There are a few options for this – matting, spacers (available with custom framing or you can buy them online) or no glass. If it’s a delicate piece of art it should definitely have glass to protect it from dust, moisture, etc., but professional prints are sprayed with a protective coating and are okay without glass. Just use a feather duster to clean them.

Acrylic vs. glass – window cleaner will cause acrylic to fog – I use a slightly damp microfiber cloth to clean acrylic glazing.

Do you know that cardboard backing you find in store bought frames? It’s there to help give your prints some stability. You won’t find that piece of cardboard in custom framing, rather the prints will be mounted. Mounting prints prevents the rippling that happens over time and they make it much harder to damage your prints as well. My wall prints are all mounted unless otherwise requested. If you’re putting a mounted print into a store bought frame you’ll probably need to remove the cardboard and the glass.

 

Digital Images

It strikes me every time someone says that digital images are forever. Have these people never lost a digital image? Never had a corrupt hard drive, computer crash or a disk that won’t read? First, PLEASE PRINT your images. Have physical copies of them. Second, back them up in at least two places – one being off site. If they’re just living on your hard drive, USB or a CD you WILL lose them. Cloud based services are great too, but I personally have a hard time believing that they will be around in 50 years or won’t get hacked or something. While we’re on the subject, please don’t print them at value-priced places. Most digital printing I’ve seen from consumer labs is atrocious both in color and quality. I cannot imagine that that flimsy paper is archival.

 

Archival Storage

Whether it’s a photo album, matted print or a box of prints, please be sure that if you care about those images you are storing them with archival materials… from the mat to the photo box to the adhesive you use to secure them – everything should say archival. Wood boxes are gorgeous but over time gasses from the wood will cause the images to discolor and should not be used for long-term storage.

 

If the photos mean something to you, if you’d be sad to never see them again, please take good care of them.

 

Lauren – 10 day old newborn baby in the Hudson Valley

At just 10 days old, Lauren already knew how to work it for her newborn photography session! We started off with some simple, cozy and cute poses on a plush mohair blanket and some pretty lace and linen layering fabrics and she rocked my favorite bonnet:

We switched our set up to incorporate this gorgeous dusty rose textured backdrop and sweet baby Lauren curled up nicely in a womb-like pose for me

Sometimes the best poses are the ones that baby does on her own! Lauren loved to sleep with her arms up by her head so of course I had to capture that for mom and dad! Doesn’t she look so peaceful? I always wonder what babies dream about.
Tutus are not typically my thing but mama loves them and brought this cute set for Lauren’s newborn photos – I’m always happy to incorporate special requests, sentimental items, etc. – as this was not my usual style I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do with it – I think the lace overlay worked out well!

How do we compliment a tutu? Why add a girly headband, of course! I wanted to make sure we had something a touch different that would go well with the above photo in their album – these two images went perfectly together in their custom designed book!

One of my very favorite photos – my husband and I grabbed this authentic reclaimed barnwood recently from 2 barns that were demolished in Goshen NY – well worth the effort if I may say! Miss Lauren sure seemed to like her cozy fur ‘nest’ as she was lying in the basket and modeling the headband I made special for my Christmas babies!

Big brother Chase is full of energy and was a bit tough to convince but he eventually gave into my charms! 😉 He was quite proud to show off that shirt!

How sweet is Chase with his baby sister?

We sure worked hard for this family photo – look at those great smiles! It should be a crime how amazing mama looks too!

Thank you SO much, Valerie, Garrett, Chase and Lauren! It was such a pleasure meeting you all and capturing this special time for your family. I can’t wait to see you again soon!

To book your Hudson Valley NY newborn baby photography session e-mail me at info@autumn-photography.com – space is limited and it is highly recommended that you book while you are still pregnant to ensure availability! Newborn babies are best photographed under 2 weeks of age to get the best photos and sleeping cute poses.

Baby John – Hudson Valley NY Newborn Photography

Holy moly it’s been a wild year! I spent the first few months of 2014 recovering from major surgery, the majority of the year in physical therapy and still managed to take photos of babies and families galore! It’s really awful how badly I have neglected my blog. It’s always the last thing on my never ending to-do list and never seems to actually get done! Blogging to me is like putting the laundry away – I know I should do it but there are so many other things to do that I feel are more important so it rarely happens.

While I had intended to really catch up on all of the sessions I hadn’t blogged I know that isn’t a goal that I’ll actually accomplish so I’m not going to kid myself. How about a few highlights from some recent favorites? We’ll start with Baby John. John was such a good boy for me – he slept so well and was extremely cooperative. He even gave me a couple of smiles! =)

Max- 6 month old baby photos

Please bare with me while I attempt to get caught up! Max came back in May for his next Baby’s First Year Plan photo session – around 6 months old. Max and his mom Beth live down in Brooklyn so coming up to the Hudson Valley isn’t exactly a quick ride up the street! I cannot tell you how honored I am when I get clients who travel from far away! I’ve had clients come to me from Trumbull CT, Bayonne NJ, Brooklyn NY and even out in eastern CT! It is a HUGE compliment that they like me and my photography that much and I appreciate it so very much.

 

Max was a bit tired and cranky when he came to me for our second installment of photos in his Baby’s First Year Plan but we still created some adorable photos! Here he is happy as can be on the same blanket we used for his newborn session

Beth brought the cutest little tie for him! What a charmer!

Max wanted to show off his new skills again in a different outfit this time but it was quickly approaching nap time since he hadn’t slept much on the ride up

…aaaaand he’s OUT!

Thanks so much for making the trip up here from Brooklyn to see me!

To book your Hudson Valley NY baby photography, e-mail me at info@autumn-photography.com or CLICK HERE!