13 Sep

South Charlotte Photography Workshops for Parents

Is your DSLR stuck on Auto?  Are you missing amazing shots of your kids? Not sure how to capture them best?  Unlock your camera’s full potential with Carolyn Ann Ryan’s Photography workshops!  Designed specifically for parents (and grandparents) these workshops will teach you how to use your camera and capture better images of your kids.

Photography Workshops for Parents in Charlotte by Carolyn Ann Ryan

Details:

Capturing stunning, authentic images with your DSLR takes more than the push of a button.

In our Level I workshop, we’ll cover:

  • Fundamental DSLR elements
  • Exposure, aperture, & shutter speed
  • Depth of field & background blur
  • Essential lenses & focal length
  • Tack-sharp focus
  • Essential lighting techniques
  • Compositional strategies for exceptional images

 

Dates/Times for Level I Classes:

  • Thursday, October 5, 2017 10 am-12 pm
  • Wednesday, November 8, 2017 10 am-12 pm

Location: Carolyn’s Home Studio, Marvin, NC 28173

Class Size:  Limited to 6 Participants

Investment: $99

Click Here to Register

Spread the Word!

The only thing better than taking a Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography workshop is taking it with a friend! If you know of someone who might like to join you, we would be so grateful for your referrals!

Questions?

Feel free to call the studio office at 704-256-7270 or email carolyn@carolynannryan.com to get more info and sign up

11 Sep

Charlotte, NC | Fall Family Portrait Session Style Guide

What to Wear for Your Fall Family Portrait Session

So your fall family portrait session is coming up and you don’t know what to wear. This is always a big challenge for my clients, because they know they are investing in the portraits and they want to love them. These are the photos that they will use for their Christmas and Holiday cards, and also to display in their home for many years to come and send as gifts to close family members.  Visit my previous Gift Guide Blog Post here.

Charlotte NC Family Photographer shares What to Wear guide for Fall Family Portraits

So, where to begin?

The first thing I suggest to my clients is to look around their home, look at their walls and think about where they want to display their photos. They should consider both the style and decor in these rooms along with the colors.  Is it a casual family room or a formal dining room or entry way?  This will help determine how casual or dressy they would like to get for their session.

For the colors, I always suggest that my clients use complimentary colors instead of having everyone completely matching. You want your family portraits to represent your personalities both individual and as a family. Incorporating the accent colors used to decorate your home will help your photos look best on the walls in your home.

Stylish Charlotte Photography

Accessories and Layers

Weather can be unpredictable, especially during the Fall when the temperature swings can be pretty dramatic. The temperature on your session day could be 85 degrees or 55 degrees, and that can make a big difference in keeping your family members comfortable and happy.

So, I ask my clients to think about layers for their outfits. Are there jackets or sweaters than can be added where you would still be happy displaying the photos on your wall (which often means not their typical winter jacket or fall rain jacket). In the same respect, if you are planning for sweaters and corduroy pants, do you have a backup option if the weather is 88 degrees? It is difficult to keep children and adults happy if they are overheated on session day, so being flexible with outfits can be important.

I LOVE accessories! Whether it is hats, suspenders, vests or ties for little boys or hair bands, bows, hats and pretty shoes for little girls, the outfits can really make the photos stand out! Use accessories to show your child’s personality and to help tie your outfit selections together!

Stylish Fashion Tips for Charlotte Portrait Sessions

But what about my Christmas/Holiday Cards? Should we wear holiday colors?

You really have two options here:

  • You can simply wear your regular outfits and I can adjust the color and design of your card to match your clothing OR
    Holiday Card Designs highlighting Stylish Charlotte NC Family Photography Stylish Charlotte Photography Family Portrait Fashion
  • You can do a clothing change halfway through your session.  Because yes, children are stinking cute in their holiday pajamas and your friends will just melt when they see your card!
    Most Adorable Christmas Pajama Portrait Session
08 Sep

Best Charlotte, NC Family Photography – Holiday Gift Ideas

Ready to begin holiday shopping?

Fall is definitely the busiest time of year for family portrait photographers, especially in the Charlotte area of North Carolina.  Most parents book their Fall Family photography session because they want updated photographs for their annual holiday and Christmas cards.  But I love showing my clients beautiful, unique and thoughtful holiday gift ideas for family members using their moments captured during our photo session together.

Here are a few of my favorite holiday gift products, but just make sure to include a pack of tissues when presenting to Grandma, because these items have been known to make her cry:

Print Gallery Stands

Best Charlotte NC Family Photography Holiday Gift Ideas 2

Why I love this product

These are such a great gift for grandparents or parents.  The print comes complete on a wood stand with easel, so there is no frame purchase required and therefore the print truly stands out on a table or desktop and will match any decor.  Grandparents will love adding these beautiful display pieces to their tabletop filled with photos of their grandchildren.

 

Accordion Booklets

Charlotte NC Family Photographer Holiday Gift Giving Ideas

Why I love this product

We all know that grandmothers love having small photos on hand in their purse to show all their friends at the spur of the moment? Out to lunch with friends – look at my beautiful grandchildren!  The accordion booklets have 10 wallet sized images on the inside and one on the cover and it’s a great way to get a bunch of your favorite images from your session.  And since the accordion booklets come in sets of 3, there is always an extra for Mom to keep one for herself.

 

Classic Modern Frames with Torn Edge Prints

Charlotte NC Best Holiday Gift Ideas

Why I love this product

This is a beautiful fine art print with hand torn deckled edge paper that is mounted in a deep float-style frame with a white-on-white mat.  The presentation is stunning and your image is truly the focal point.  This is not your standard print in a frame and will make a treasured addition to the walls in either your own home or a grandparent’s home.

 

Wood Framed Ornament

Thoughtful Charlotte NC Photography Gift Ideas

Why I love this product

These handmade Organic Bloom wood ornament frames are adorable and unique.  Choose from either reclaimed wood or the custom painted frame to match the colors of your outfits. Whether hanging on your own tree or ordering for grandparents, aunts or uncles, these adorable frames will stand out among the many ornaments on display!  Each year, as you begin to decorate for the holidays, these adorable photos and frames will bring you back to the beautiful moments we created during your session.

 

Magnetic Monthly Calendar

Thoughtful Charlotte NC Holiday Gifts

Why I love this product

Personalized with 12 of your favorite photographs from your session, your magnetic monthly calendar can stick to the fridge, a file cabinet, or wherever pulls you. It has a month-at-a-glance view displaying one photo per month.  This is another great gift idea for grandparents or Mom that will tug at their heart strings every time they walk by or grab a glass of water from the fridge.  I have had one of these on my own refrigerator for the last 3 years, and my fridge would be incomplete without one.

 

Ready to Book Your Portrait Session

We are now booking Fall Family and Holiday Portrait Sessions!  We would love to chat with you and help schedule a session for your family!  Please visit our web site at www.carolynannryan.com and call us at 704-256-7270.

 

02 Aug

Creating Authentic Family Moments | Top 11 Family Walking Together

Creating Authentic Family Moments in Charlotte

One of the lessons that I learned in my early years of family portrait photography came during a session with my own sister and her family.  The lesson:  As easy way to set the stage for creating authentic family moments with just a little instruction and a whole bunch of fun.

It was my very first year photographing families outdoors, and my sister and I scheduled a late Summer session.  We had already spent two hours in a park and the kids were getting tired.  But I wanted a truly amazing photograph for my sister of her whole family.  My sister looked at the hill nearby and said “If you want a photo of all the girls smiling, let them run down that big hill over there”.   I looked to the hill and I saw the light, and I mean literally – the light was stunning.

So, I sent the whole family up the hill while I laid down in the grass at a distance.  The whole family went running hand in hand down the hill and the smiles and giggles followed and an authentic family moment was created.  This photograph was created in September 2010 and a beautiful canvas print of this image still hangs on my sister’s wall in her family room.

Real Moments Charlotte NC Family Photography

As I have been compiling favorite moments over the last few weeks, I realized that some of my favorite photographs from my clients’ sessions are created in a very similar way.  But as you scroll through this list, you can see how a simple idea can highlight a family’s unique personality and create a beautiful and even magical moment in a classic photograph. So here are my . . .

Top 11 Favorite Photographs of Families Walking Together

Authentic Family Moments Charlotte NC Photography

11.  I love how happy this family looks together. And their outfits paired perfectly with the beautiful rust colors of the foliage.

 

 

Authentic Family Photographs by Charlotte NC Photographer

10. Running through a field in the fall can certainly bring smiles to the little ones. This photograph has occasionally been featured on my business cards.

 

 

Authentic Family Photography Charlotte NC

9. Beautiful spring session with hair blowing in the breeze and Dad making everyone laugh.

 

 

Authentic Family Portraits in Charlotte N

8. The wonder of childhood. I love how Mom and Dad adore these little guys.

 

 

Authentic Moments Charlotte NC Family Portrait

7. I have always loved how the expression on this little man’s face, as well as how the whole family focused right on him. I wonder if he still loves to steal the show.

 

 

Delight Family Portraits Charlotte NC

6. If you have been to my studio office, you are familiar with this family and the cluster of photographs on the walls. I adored their energy and spirit. So much fun and giggles, despite the November chill in the air.

 

 

Dreamy Charlotte NC Family Photographs

5. There is a sweet dreaminess to this photo, and I’m just waiting to see the enchanting young lady begin her twirl.

 

 

Enchanting Family Photography Charlotte NC

4. I love the outfits, the balloons, that beautiful pop of color against the sunlight and the incredible connections captured within this sweet photograph.

 

 

Funny Authentic Moments Charlotte NC Family Photography

3. Sometimes, you gotta go your own way.

 

 

Creating Authentic Moments Charlotte NC Family Photography

2. And yes, this little man agrees and he will choose to lead, not follow.

 

 

Uptown Charlotte Family Photography

  1. As I relocated to Charlotte two years ago, this one holds a special place in my heart. The family was one of our first Irish Dance friends after relocating and I love how much their adore their sweet girl. And while I don’t normally love having other people in the backdrop, seeing a person in a Panthers T-Shirt truly fits this city. Charlotte loves the Panthers, and Charlotte is home.

 

If you enjoyed this list, please check out my Top 12 Moments of Joy and Top 10 Sibling Hugs.

21 Jul

Genuine Charlotte Child Photography | Top 12 Moments of Joy

Top 12 Moments of Joy

“Make a joyful noise”

Earlier this week on the blog, I shared my Top 10 Sibling Hugs from previous client family portrait sessions.  Today, I want to help kick start your weekend with great big smiles and joy, therefore in today’s post I’m sharing my Top 12 Moments of Joy! These open mouth smiles from the youngsters are genuine moments from my portrait sessions and have always brought sunshine to my days.

Can you almost hear the happy squeals of joy and giggles from these little ones? My goal for a family portrait session is always to make it as fun as possible while capturing some of the best images my clients will have for years to come.  I can only hope that these adorable little faces represent the true experience of what it means to work with Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography for a family portrait session!

I wish that your upcoming weekend will be filled with moments containing this much joy and happiness.  If only we could find a way to bottle up the joy of childhood and share it with everyone.

12. Joy of Childhood Photography

11.Charlotte Child Photography Joyous Moments

10.

Genuine Laughter Photographs9.Joyful Charlotte Child Photography8.Genuine Charlotte Child Photography Moments

7.Joyful Portrait of Siblings in Charlotte NC

6.Giggles and Joy by Charlotte Child Photographer

5.Joyful Family Photography in Charlotte

4.Moments of Pure Joy Charlotte Child Photographer

3. Top 13 Joyous Moments in Child Photography

2.Genuine Charlotte Childhood Photography

  1. Genuine Charlotte Child Photography
19 Jul

Heartwarming Charlotte Family Photography | Top 10 Sibling Hugs

Top 10 Sibling Hugs

“You can’t give a hug without getting a hug”.

There is something about a photograph of a hug shared between children that just warms my soul.  And I love how asking kids for a simple pose during a family portrait session can often turn into truly endearing and heartwarming moment.

Over the last few days, I have been going back through images from the last few years of family portrait sessions, and I have truly enjoyed remembering these treasured moments.  With each session, there are a handful of images that have become personal favorites.  It could be a funny moment, an adorable giggle, or an incredible hug that just takes me back to the moment I clicked the shutter of my camera.

I’ve started organizing these precious moments into categories and I would love to begin sharing my favorite Top 10 images for each category on the blog.

So, today I’m starting with my favorites in Top 10 Sibling Hugs.  All of these images were captured during a family portrait session with my clients from the last few years.  I hope you won’t be able to resist smiling while viewing this list of photographs, and may it warm your heart as much as it does mine.

It is said that hugs are like vitamins for the soul, and looking at this list, I completely agree.

Here are my Top 10 Favorite Sibling Hugs from Family Portrait Sessions

10. The Sibling Squeeze

There is no greater friend than a sister.  Even when sisters don’t see eye to eye, they will still always have your back and always be there when you need them most.
Heartwarming Charlotte Family Photography by Carolyn Ann Ryan

9. The Sibling Squeeze Part II

When you squeeze so tight, you have to close your eyes too.
Sweetest Hug Photo in Heartwarming Charlotte Family Photography

8. The I adore my big brother hug

I love that you can just see the adoration on this little man’s face and you can just tell how much he adores his big brother.   Charlotte NC Family Photographer shares adorable hugs

7. The Sneak Attack Hug and Kiss

Older siblings adore their little siblings too.  Big sister can’t resist giving her little sister a kiss on the cheek with her hug.
Heartwarming Charlotte NC Family Photography

6. The Giggle Hug

These two sweethearts were super giggly during their entire photo session.  I remember that my cheeks hurt from smiling so much on the other side of the camera. Heartwarming Charlotte NC Child Photography

5. The Simplicity Hug

These boys just have the perfect, simple and sweet smiles to draw you into this moment.
Charlotte NC Family captures Heart Warming Sibling Hug Photos

4. The Face Press

I love getting my clients’ faces close together for family portraits and these girls definitely have the right idea.  Adorable Hug Photo by Charlotte NC Child Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan

3. The Peekaboo

I love hugs like this one between siblings.  I certainly remember the stage of my own children’s life where my daughter always hugged my son around his neck and you couldn’t see his face.  It’s just how they hugged at that age.

Heartwarming Hug Photos from Charlotte NC Family Photographer

2. The “I never want to let go” hug

Big sis loved this little guy so much.  You can just see on her face that she never wants to let go of his adorable hugs.  It’s photos like this that make you want to stay wrapped in a moment forever.Charlotte NC Family Photograph Heart Warming Sibling Hugs

1. The too adorable for words hug

This session was photographed in front of the client’s home in North Carolina.  And if these boys weren’t already cute enough, when I asked them to hug, they just leaned into each other as if they could take a nap all curled up on each other. Adorable Brotherly Hug by Charlotte NC Family Photographer

 

My own Munchkin and Pumpkin

It’s not fair to list in the Top 10, but I will forever love this moment and this hug and have it framed on my wall. This photograph is already almost three years old and as my children grow older, I want to always remember this perfect sweetness. And I just want to scoop them both into a great, big forever Mom hug and never let go.

Endearing Sibling Photograph by Carolyn Ann Ryan

 

17 Feb

Most Loved Charlotte Family Photographer | Thank You for Your Votes!

Voted Most Loved Charlotte Family Photographer AND Best Photographer by TWO Charlotte Family Newsletters

Earlier this week, I received notification from TWO local family email newsletters that their readers have voted Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography as their Favorite Family Photographer in the South Charlotte area for 2017!  I can’t thank my clients and friends enough for taking a moment to vote in each of these newsletters.  Your votes mean so much to me.

 

Recent Local Awards Received
Most Loved Charlotte Family Photographer
Previous Local Awards

I absolutely love my job and have truly enjoyed working with my clients, and I thank you all so much for choosing me as your Favorite and Most Loved Photographer.

If we haven’t worked together yet, and you would like to learn more about booking your family’s portrait session with Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography, then I welcome you to visit our web site, join our email list to learn about upcoming session options and dates, and call us at 704-256-7270.

27 Jan

Favorite South Charlotte Family Photographer | Vote For Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography

Favorite South Charlotte Family Photographer | Vote For Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography

It’s that time of year again – when I feel like I’m campaigning to win a middle school student council election. But truthfully, I’m extremely honored to be nominated in TWO local newsletters in their categories for Favorite Family Photographer and would be truly ecstatic if my business got your vote!

So if you have loved working with Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography OR if you just love following along with our Facebook and Instagram feeds to see adorable photographs, then would you please take a moment to vote for Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography as Favorite Family Photographer in:
* Hulafrog’s Most Loved Awards 2017 (Deadline: February 3rd) AND
* Macaroni Kid’s Gold Daisy Awards 2017 (Deadline: February 8th)

Thanks in advance for your time and for all of your support! And thanks so much for your business and continuing to follow along with Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography! I greatly appreciate it.

 

Vote for Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography as Favorite South Charlotte Family Photographer

Vote for Favorite South Charlotte Family Photographer

19 Jan

Experienced Charlotte Family Photographer | Siblings and Personalities

Experienced Charlotte Family Photographer | Siblings

I absolutely love hearing the following words from my clients: “You’ve captured each child and their personality perfectly!”  When a mother can look at a photograph of her child, and not just see how cute he or she looks, but their entire personality shines through and she feels that you have captured exactly who they are as a person at that point in time – that’s gold!   It’s truly music to my ears, and lets my heart know that I did a good job for that Mom – I did MY job.

Our children grow so fast, but inside each one is so unique and distinctive.  They may have similar physical features on the outside, and it may be easy to tell when three boys are brothers, but their likes and dislikes are all their own.  This is one of the reasons why I love doing pre-session consultations in advance of my portrait sessions.  It’s a chance for me to find out which child loves cars or trains, and which child loves playing basketball or baseball.  Believe it or not, it’s important to know if your little man loves Team Cap or Team Iron Man, because it helps them warm up to me, and their eyes start to light up when you start talking about their favorite things.  And it’s equally important to know what might make them giggle or laugh, which I will fully admit, when it comes to boys that can often mean potty sounds and noises.  So, yes, I might need to ask your child which member of the family has the loudest or smelliest farts.  (But I only ask these questions with mom’s permission and that’s another important part of her pre-session consultation).

It’s all part of the job, and getting to know the adorable, unique personalities of  little boys and girls makes my job so much more enjoyable and fun!
Carolyn Ann Ryan, experienced Charlotte Family Photographer loves photographing boys and their moms

Experienced Charlotte NC Family Portrait Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan takes photographs of siblings

12 Jan

Charlotte, NC Family Photographer | PPA’s Family Portrait Month

Each year, PPA Charities organizes Family Portrait Month in support of Operation Smile. During the months of September and October, a portion of all of my session fees were donated to this charitable event to help at least one child obtain a new smile with the help of Operation Smile’s amazing doctors.  Over the last six years, Carolyn Ann Ryan Photography has helped at least six children obtain new smiles, and I am so proud that we can continue to help and support these organizations and children thanks to my clients.

This family is one of the many families I had the opportunity to photograph during this past Fall season, and I just loved everything about the session.  The fall foliage was absolutely perfect in the middle of November, and the temperatures were amazing!  When the sun shines, so do my clients and so do I!  The sparkling yellow leaves look like gold that day. For this session, I love that the grandparents were able to join us for the session, and we were able to capture special photographs with each of them and the grandchildren along with the entire family together, which makes them a perfect highlight for Family Portrait Month.

PPA Family Portrait Month in Charlotte NC

Carolyn Ann Ryan participates in PPA Family Portrait Month by photographing families in Charlotte NCAward winning family photographer, Carolyn Ann Ryan, participates in PPA's Family Portrait Month

Charlotte, NC Family Photographer, Carolyn Ann Ryan, participates in PPA's Family Portrait Month

04 Oct

Enchanting South Charlotte Family Portraits | Secret Garden

Enchanting South Charlotte Family Portraits | Secret Garden

Every once in a while, you find a location that feels like a secret garden that enables you to create enchanting family portraits, and we found one right here in South Charlotte.  I just adore this first photograph with the old tree and bird house on the side, and adds to the feeling that this family is just alone in a special place having a beautiful and heartwarming chat with their little girl.  The sunlight sparkles through the trees behind, illuminating their story.

And just a few feet away we found a brick path with a beautiful bench and grassy field to create a perfect setting for their daughter’s family portraits.  She truly looked like a princess strolling through the enchanted garden.

 

Enchanting South Charlotte Family Photography by Carolyn Ann Ryan Enchanting South Charlotte Family Portraits photographed by Carolyn Ann Ryan Carolyn Ann Ryan creates enchanting South Charlotte Communion Portraits Carolyn Ann Ryan creates enchanting Family Portraits in South Charlotte, NC

20 Apr

Sweet South Charlotte Family Photography | Springtime

Sweet South Charlotte Family Photography | Springtime

Springtime has arrived, and already the temperatures are climbing!  But I’m loving the warmth and sunshine especially when it reminds me of sweet family portrait sessions like this one!  I just adore the sweet smiles from these beautiful girls in their Easter dresses!

Sweet South Charlotte Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan South Charlotte Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Sweet South Charlotte Family Photography

10 Apr

Classic Charlotte NC Family Portraits – National Siblings Day

Classic Charlotte NC Family Portraits – National Siblings Day

As you may have heard, today is National Siblings Day and I love taking a few moments on this day to share some of my favorite portraits of siblings from the last year.  Siblings are your instant best friends, biggest supporters, shoulders to cry on, and they will be a special part of almost all of your childhood memories.  And yes, they are also the people you will likely fight with the most, but regardless of the fights, teasing, or competing, they are the people that will always be there for you when you need them. They will be in your biggest cheerleaders in life, and even your defenders should you ever need them.

There is just something amazing that comes with being and having a sibling, and it is definitely something to celebrate. It is unconditional and everlasting.

Having a sister myself, I have always loved the song “Sisters” featured in the movie White Christmas.  ‘Sisters, Sisters, there were never such devoted sisters . . .”

Charlotte NC Family Photograph shares classic sibling portraits for National Siblings Day

 

While many of these are classic portraits of siblings, I think the last image at the bottom may be one of my favorites showing the silliness of siblings working together in opposite of their parents. That image was not posed or requested and was just a natural moment from an adorable family session.
Classic Charlotte NC Family Portraits shared by Carolyn Ann Ryan for National Siblings Day shared by family photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan

 

And below, here are some favorite images of my family members.  On the top left is my four beautiful nieces, which my daughter jumping in.  On the top right is a photograph from a family party showing my father with his eldest brother along with my aunt and my mom. The brother two images highlight the sibling goofiness and friendship of my own two children.  The bottom left photograph was taken by my talented friend, Annette Goodman, from Annette Goodman Photography during our family portrait session last year.

Classic Charlotte NC Family Portraits shared by Carolyn Ann Ryan for National Siblings Day

04 Mar

Dreamy Charlotte NC Family Photography – Spring is Coming

Dreamy Charlotte NC Family Photography – Spring is Coming

The weather forecast next week is hinting at temperatures near 80 degrees and on this 50 degree afternoon, I’m yearing for more and more sunshine.  So to kick off the weekend, I will simply share beautiful, dreamy Spring Family Portraits to get you as excited for Spring as I am.

Enjoy and have a great weekend.

Dreamy Charlotte NC Child Photography Dreamy Charlotte NC Family Photography Dreamy Marvin NC Family Photography in Spring

02 Mar

Classic Marvin NC Family Photography | Sunny Days

Classic Marvin NC Family Photography | Sunny Days

I have just loved the gorgeous sunny days in the South Charlotte and Marvin area of North Carolina.  The warmth and sunshine provide a beautiful glow for classic family portrait sessions.  I was so thrilled to meet and work with this family that found my business on The National Association of Professional Child Photographers (NAPCP) web site.

Classic Marvin NC Family Photography by Carolyn Ann Ryan Marvin Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan photographs classic family portrait session Marvin North Carolina Family Portraits photographed by Carolyn Ann Ryan