My baby girl is turning ONE at the end of February! I can't believe it. It really does feel like I gave birth to that little baby in our home just yesterday. I remember her beautiful labor so vividly. I often tell my husband I would give birth to a baby like Selah any day (her labor was fast). He laughs, and quickly says something witty. Nathan always says that with children the days are long but the years are short. And that is very true—even more so when you have 2 children. I feel like time went slower when my son, Liam, was a baby in comparison to Selah. Day to day I wake to realize suddenly that 2 months have passed. POOF—she’s crawling, POOF—she’s talking and so on. People that have children know how very surreal it feels for time to pass so quickly. People that don't have children probably get tired of us always talking about it, and always saying how we don't want our babies to grow, and how just yesterday this and that and on and on… but you just WAIT! You'll say these words too.
I have been very excited about all of the decorating and crafting that comes along with a birthday: everyone that knows me, knows that I love to craft! We decided (mainly me lol) on a unicorn themed birthday party, and of course to incorporate that into her cake smash. I wanted to go ALL out for this huge milestone of hers, and that is exactly what happened.
This year (2017) I decided that it was time to incorporate my love for art more into my photography style. I decided to paint a large 9 foot by 4.5 foot canvas drop to use as the backdrop of my daughter’s session. I couldn't find a backdrop that had everything I wanted because, granted, I may have just bought one if I had. This painting took me 10 hours to complete. I wanted something magical, something that when you saw it you felt like you were invited to be there. I envisioned something beautiful, colorful (but pastel), a rainbow but not a cheesy one. I wanted to incorporate a field, tall grass, butterflies, and I even thought about painting a unicorn, but I decided to let Selah be the unicorn instead:-)
I also made both rompers and a headband piece that my daughter is wearing in this session. My original plan was to take on the cake (because as most know I was a cake designer for 8 years) and even the doll, but I SOON realized I was in over my head... really really over my head haha. I sometimes think I can do a lot more than what I actually can do (LOL). My husband is so supportive, but he also helps me bring my ambitious thoughts down a notch. Therefore I outsourced the cake and the doll to 2 friends who do beautiful work.
I posted my cake smash setup in a newborn photography group I am a part of and the response was overwhelming! It’s been such a blessing to receive 1.6k likes and just shy of 400 comments; I haven't even finished reading them all! I cannot believe how much positive feedback I got. Honestly, it feels like a dream. I got emails and messages from backdrop companies that want to print my backdrop. My husband and I are praying about who will be the best fit for us. I'm still soaking it all in, the news is still so fresh. I am so excited, I am already planning what I will paint next, I feel so blessed and thankful. Praise God for the talents he blesses us with! Even more, praise God for our children:) They will never be this age again, and I am so happy that my little Selah’s photo session turned out the way it did.
I got tons of comments, messages and emails of people asking questions so I will answer them here since many were repetitive. The Q&A will be at the end of this post.
I hope you enjoy some of my favorite images from my daughter's session. Feel free to share!
TWO HANDS! lol She looooved her cake
I love this photograph, it really shows Selah's personality.
Q: Will you be releasing your backdrop to a company for printing so we can buy one?
A: Yes I will, I have decided to allow printing, I think I know what company I will be choosing, but more prayer needs to be done. I am waiting for samples to arrive to choose what I like.
Q: Will you be making your drop an exclusive?
A: My plan is to hopefully limit the amount of replicas allowing it to be limited edition.
Q: What did you paint on?
A: I painted on a 4.5 ft by 9 ft canvas. I actually just bought three yards of it at Joann Fabric store. It was on sale. I plan to purchase future canvas else where because I need different sizes but this one worked out well.
Q: What did you paint with?
A: Water base Acrylic, and cheap walmart ones at that. I didn't want to invest too much on pricier ones or better quality. I wanted to be prepared to the possibility of not being happy with my painting, and choosing cheaper paints would have hurt less to toss.
Q: How much paint did you use?
A: I used about 80-100 ounces of paint (rough estimate).
Q: Can you make this into a digital background and sell it?
A: I have decided not to sell this as a digital background. But it will be printed and available for purchase at a limited quantity. Feel free to leave your emails in the comments and I will email you with the release date once we know.
Q: Where did you get the flowers on the floor?
A: I bought a $10 wreath at At Home last year when they were selling off all of their Spring decor at 75% off. It was a steal, and I just took off the peonies from the wreath and placed them on top of bone seamless for this session.
Q: What are the dots on the floor?
A: For most cake smash sessions I like to punch out circles of coordinating colors to place on the floor. I like it, I think it ties in the set. I make them out of scrapbook paper and use 2 different size circle punches, all purchased at Joann's.
Q: What lighting do you use?
A: I use an Alien Bee 400 and and 86" PLM with a white diffuser in front and a black cover on it's back (All from Paul C. Buff). I had my Ab400 set to 1/16 for this shoot placed to my left and a reflector to my right.
Q: What were your camera settings?
A: I always like to adjust my WB for every shoot and for this shoot I had it to 5600 Kelvin. My settings were - - ISO 200, F-stop 4.0 and shutter speed 160
Q:Where did you buy your daughter's rompers and headband?
A: I made them :-)
Q: Do you sell the rompers?
A: I do not, I have no spare time. www.coraandviolet.com is the designer who inspired me to make the first romper with the hand embroidered unicorn face. Check her page out, super cute stuff there.
Q: Where did you get your basin/white bowl?
A: I purchased it at a flea market for $45! It's an antique:) The flea market is called First Monday, it opens up every 1st Monday (weekend) of the month in Canton, TX.