Sunday, December 27, 2009

My New Year's Resolution...

is to come back to my blog.

Hold me to that :)

Why have I been MIA? I've started blogging for Stonewall Kitchen (SK). I haven't acutally stopped blogging - I've just stopped writing MY blog. This is not a bad thing. I've very much enjoyed blogging for SK. I've realized that the reason I could so easily blog about weddings was because my job was wedding centered. I still photograph some weddings - but my job has become more food centered.

Here's the new blog idea. It will still be about photography (that hasn't changed) but I will add food into the blogging mix. Since I will still be photographing some weddings I will still answer wedding questions and offer tips. I'll just be writing about whatever is happening with me at the time. I plan to start talking about food and healthy eating too! Plus, I think I can help more people with healthy eating tips than I can with wedding advice! I'm ready for my new blog adventure... I hope you enjoy!

Wonder what I've already been saying about food:
Warm cups of Holiday Cheer
In the kichen are you and artist or a scientist?
Is that fruitcake?
Celebrate with cocktails
'Twas the night before Thanksgiving
How to cook a turkey
What does it mean to be all natural?
Roasted Garlic Onion Jam

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Chulamama photoshoot 11/1

I've recently started doing some photography for Noelle and Heather of Chulamama - aren't their kid's city tee's cute? Well... the kids themselves are pretty adorable too, huh? :)
Join me at Chulamama on 11/1 for FREE photo sessions! Both maternity and children's photo sessions are available. The sitting will be free and all photographs will be available for your print and/or download purchase online. I hope to see you there! We will also be giving away a free sitting in a location of your choosing. (Some location suggestions are your home, my studio, park/garden, beach.)

Chulamama Danvers, MA
(note this is their new location not downtown Salem)
On Rt 114, minutes from 128/95
85 andover St, Danvers, MA

Drops ins are welcome or call/email for a time slot

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dorothea Lange & Georgia O'Keeffe

I received this book: Dorothea Lange, A Life Beyond Limits (by Linda Gordon) from the author's publicist.

I have to say it felt like Christmas to get this nice big book in the mail before it was available to everyone else! This new biography of Dorothea Lange is a must have for any photographer or art lover's library. For me, learning about the amazing woman behind the camera makes her photographs even better.

"Perhaps the biggest surprise about Lange’s personal life was that she was by no means the saintly, self-effacing personality that many had assumed, extrapolating from her photography. On the contrary, she was driven by ambition, sometimes irritable, often demanding—yet uncommonly sensitive and generous."

Lange, a photographer I have always admired, is brought to life through the pages of this book. As photographers we often attempt to reveal much about our subjects while shielding ourselves. I enjoyed this look at the woman behind the camera.

Get a copy for yourself!

This is the first time I've received something at no charge and mentioned it on my blog. So... I feel like I can't stay much more about it without being a sell out! While it was a cool experience, I by no means plan to turn my blog into advertising. I will continue to write about my life & photography - so don't worry about having to read lots of random product reviews!

So, speaking of female artists I adore - I was flipping through the free on demand movies and came across this:

Ok, I'll be the first to admit that lifetime movies are usually all man-hating and not so good, but I really liked this one... even if they were a bit hard on poor Stieglitz. Last I checked it was still on comcast's free on demand so take a look! I knew that O'Keeffe was Stieglitz's muse but seeing, though these actors, out how he thrust her into the spotlight was revealing. I particularly liked the mention that his photographic work was fading out of the public eye and she worked hard after his death to establish his legacy... what an interesting relationship.

Side note, what is with the heavily airbrushed photo of Joan Allen (O'Keeffe)? She almost looks like a child in the artwork but we only see her as an adult in the movie - what is the deal?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

So you want to be a photographer?

I was recently talking to a friend who wants to get into wedding photography. Then I thought, hey, people helped me when I was just starting so why not pay it forward... here goes!

Getting Started:

- Purchase photographer uniform - black dress/suit! :) My super girl photo belt with Velcro-in accessories is also a must have!

(photo posted to Facebook by Tara Pullam)

- Pro equipment: You'll need pro cameras & lenses! The glass makes a big difference! As well as similar quality back-up equipment. (If you don't own it rent it)

- Education: Just like nurses need to be trained, there are skills & tricks of the trade that you should learn that you cannot pick up on your own. You may not be saving lives - but to your clients their wedding photos are a matter of life & death so don't take your responsibility lightly! Take classes & workshops.

- Assist, assist, assist. First work as a wedding photographer's assistant. Then work as a 2nd shooter. This is a great way to build confidence, skills, & your portfolio.

- Research. What are photographer's charging? Yes this will vary a lot and it will be based on experience, style, overhead... a lot of different things. You need to add up your own costs.

- Join a professional organization, PPA, ASMP, or even Pictage/Collages and go to meetings & read forums.

- Shoot a discounted rate wedding but NOT FREE. Don't devalue yourself, but explain to your clients that you are offering them a lower rate because you have experience as a 2nd shooter but this will be your first solo wedding. There are plenty of couples out there with little budget but your job is to educate them that your price is directly related your your experience. Do this to watch your own back! You don't want them telling their friends what they paid you and being stuck with that low rate. This way if they refer friends you can up your price based on the experience you've gained since.

- Practice at a friend's wedding. Only IF they're ok with it and you're not in the pro's way. A good time would be during getting ready photos before the pro gets there, cocktail hour, or dancing shots! Do as I say not as I do... if you are IN the wedding you can't shoot it. (I put the camera away to walk down the aisle)

- Know when to say NO. Some clients want more than is reasonable. If they are difficult in the beginning - chances are they won't get any easier to work with! If you get a bad vibe run the other way. You need to have a good relationship with your clients to give them the beautiful wedding memories they deserve.

- Attend wedding shows. This way you can see how photographer present themselves. This will help you when marketing yourself!

- Create a website & sample album. You can't get work if you don't have any photos to show! Don't cut corners. If you show a cheap album you're telling potential clients that you don't care about your work enough to give it a good home.

- Have fun. This is a job, but one when you're present on one of the biggest days in the couple's lives. You need to be happy to be there! If it ever stops being fun don't do it!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Rain, Rain, go away?

Or perhaps next time I'll be wishing for rain! Jenn & Mike's wedding is coming up and we planned a combination site walk though and engagement shoot. We had already rescheduled once because of weather so we decided to just go for it in the rain. As it turns out, rain can make for some pretty sweet shots! :)

Ingredients for a Rainy portrait session:
1) adventurous Bride & Groom
2) adventurous photographer with waterproof bag
3) nice looking plain black umbrella
4) extra golf umbrella (for photographer)
5) RAIN!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Just passing along the savings...

Saw this in my inbox & thought some of you would like it. If you're looking into Vera Wang invites you can get 25 free when you buy 50. Enjoy!

Find them here:

Monday, September 28, 2009

Big Weekend!

Two weekends ago I did double duty shooting Kiele & Jay's engagement photos and Nicole & Andy's "Ever After Session." Kiele even helped me come up with the fabulous name "Ever After Session." I was suprised when she was a bit nervous at first, but her sweet and super romantic fiance was awesome at helping her to relax and have a good time. As I told them - this is a big part of why an engagement session is a good idea! Most people aren't used to being photographed, so it's better if the first big session is a practice run like an engagement shoot instead of wedding day. They're doing pretty well for a practice run aren't they?

Andy & Nicole, on the other hand, are old pros! They've been married just over a month and this was their "Ever After Session." First, you may be asking what is that? Well, the "Ever After Session" is a post-wedding shoot that allows you to get all dressed up again. Also, having one allows you the chance to have a second set of couple photos in a totally different location than your wedding. Or, should it do the forbidden 4 letter R word (ahem, rain) on your wedding day - then you get to wait it out for perfect weather for your 'Ever After Session." And yes, I was of course thinking of Cinderella and prince charming living happily ever after when I named this session. Kiele thought that 'ever after' was better than 'happily ever after' - more sophisticated. I agree. :) So, Andy and Nicole got a chance to have even more fun with this shoot - as did I.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Smithsonian Photography Blog

The Smithsonian Photography Initiative announces its blog, “The Bigger Picture:

Have you seen it? It's quite interesting!

I, of course, love the post about facebook avatars aka profile pictures:

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Contest! Free stuff? Who doesn't like that?

Who is doing the give away?

Who are they?
It is a social network for brides-to-be and wedding vendors. This is a unique community because you can ask advice from brides and vendors alike.

What can you win?
A complimentary rental of dazzling diamond earrings (see above) to wear on your wedding day

How do you enter?
Join before October 30

**Also, don't forget to mention me, Katie Ring, as how you found bridal tweet. Why? So that I can be entered into the vendor contest! I like winning things too!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Jim & Dee

After posting that preview teaser a while ago, it's about time to add more photos! I'm playing around with my new favorite toy, online slideshows.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wedding Tip #28 - Sun & photos

My friend Kiele, after reading at least one too many bridal magazines, sent me the following email:

Hi Katie,
I was reading in a wedding magazine that if you expect to take pictures in complete sunlight ( that is, IF it’s a completely sunny day), like having a beach wedding with no shade around- that the pictures can be harsh and I should set up a spot where there is also shade. In your experience, do you think this is true?

I responded:

Yes, super sunny at noon is not the ideal for photos. The best light is 1/2 hours after sunrise and 1/2 hours before sunset on a sunny day. If it’s cloudy then the timing doesn’t matter as much because there is no harsh light. Can you make pictures when it’s bright and sunny out? Sure – but in that case photographing in the shade is best. I don’t think it is necessary to shade an entire beach ceremony.

Below, Andy & Nicole's wedding did take place around noon on a bright sunny day (ceremony in full sun) and the photos turned out beautifully! (if I do say so myself)

Want to see more sunny photos? Take a look at this post:

Kristin & Chris and Lindsey & Ryan were shot near sunset on a sunny day. However, Bret & Anna’s photos were taken right around noon on a sunny day and we made the shade work. :)

So, I think, don’t worry too much – It will be fine. And you can’t control the weather anyway :)


Kiele says, Yes I did see them (the links to examples of sunny photos) and THANK YOU. I do feel much better. The colors were very bright which made the images nice, and the couple didn't look too squnity-eyed anywhere. If I have a good photographer like you then I shouldn't have to worry- and I will! Thanks again Katie!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Wedding Tip #27 - What does a wedding really cost?

All photos are from Biz & Andy's wedding that I photographed with my dear friend Brooke. Please note that I did not check with the bride on her budget so these photos do not necessarily reflect the budget amounts I am suggesting in this post.

My clients understand that you get what you pay for, and they want to be sure they have great photos! I don't think it's a big secret that if you go cheap on something you're get a cheaper product. So... why this post? To encourage you to prioritize your wedding must-haves! Put at the top of the list what's the most important to you, and further down what you're willing to skimp on.

Many people ask me what a typical wedding budget is, so here's the breakdown. We'll assume you're spending $30k to make it easy to do the #'s (and since that is the average wedding cost)

Reception 40% ($12,000) - Includes room rental, food & beverage (sometimes includes other extras like dessert/cake)

Honeymoon 14% ($4,200)

Photography/Videography 10% ($3,000) This doesn't mean $1500 on each - it means with a $30 budget you many only be able to afford photography. Great videographers, often calling themselves wedding film makers, are a wonderful way to document your day too. If you have an over $30k wedding budget and can afford to I suggest you add videography in addition to photography!

Misc 9% ($2,700) - site fees, attendant gifts, favors & transportation

Rings 8% ($2400) - Just the wedding rings. Expect to send more if you're buying the engagement ring too. Even for just the Bride & Groom's wedding bands I think this estimate is a bit low.

Bridal Apparel 7% ($2,100) - Include dress, veil, shoes, accessories & hair/make-up ... and don't forget your very own bridal beer koozie ;)

Music 5% ($1500)

Flowers 5% ($1500)

Invitations 2% ($600)

Cake 2% ($600)

Here's my list... or at least part of it. (In priority order) If funds were unlimited would I have had the best of everything? Of course! However, since I did have to stay with-in an average budget I had to make compromises.

Photography/Videography: Of course this was my top priority, I'm a photographer! I was also lucky enough to know a lot of wonderful people and had several friends shoot my wedding. I know I'm biased, but I would argue that this should be everyone's top priority. Why? After the food is eaten, the flowers have wilted, the music stopped ect - photos are what you'll have left! I spent $139 x 5 ($695) hotel rooms for 4 photographers & videographer. Plus $500 in thank you gift cards. Total $1195. However, my friends shot as a gift to me and I also did all the photo editing & album design myself. (Photographers may charge by the hours of shooting but this fee includes all of our editing time!) This put me under the budget % in this category. My photog's sites: Paul, Brooke, Zev, Jeff, and videographer Ben.

Reception: What was important to me? Good food & open bar. What wasn't? The exact venue. So, we didn't choose a prestigious reception hall. We picked a good local place with great food! Room rental $500, Food aprox $5k, bar tab aprox $5k. (Tables & linens included - chair covers, decor & cake extra) Putting me under the budget % in this category. We wanted a city wedding with close-by hotel so guests could drink & no have to drive. We picked Mariner's Church (Part of Old Port Tavern - Portland, ME) About you get what you pay for... this is a great location at a seemingly low price. However it was very much DIY - unlike some halls that have a very involved coordinator you had to do a lot for yourself here.

Rings: My mother worked for a jewelry store. Even with her help were way over the budget % in this category. That is also why it's near the top of my list.

The Dress & Bridal Attire: I found a good deal. Dress $1000, Alterations $200, Wrap $200, Veil $150, Shoes $40. Hair & make-up I did for-trade with an amazing stylist. However I did pay her to make-up for travel, hire assistant stylists, and we tipped well. Dress & veil: Patricia Buck (no frills location but great deals), Shoes: Precious memories.

Invitations: These do set the tone for your wedding, I did DIY on vista print for save the dates (they were cheap but had inconsistent color). We went to a stationary store, papier gourmet, for wedding invites for more quality control!  I spent approximately $600 + postage.

Honeymoon: (now I"m singing their little jingle) We were able to score a week at an all inclusive 5 diamond resort (all 5 star restaurant, all drinks, room service, & no tipping) in Playa del Carmen for $4k including airfaire & Cancun to playa airport transfer.

Flowers: My mom knows a wonderful florist, Marcia Davis. She's awesome, in fact, my centerpieces are the middle photo on her website.

DJ & Lighting: Eric Kruger, mid-range price with exceptional service! ($1000) He even helped with lighting and dealt with our very long request list happily.

Hair & Make-up: Grace Professional Cosmetics, love her! :) We've also worked on other portfolio projects together and I can guarantee that she and her team of stylists are the very best! I did some portfolio work for her so we had a partially paid and partially 'for-trade' arrangement.

The Venue: We wanted to get married in a catholic church but exactly where didn't matter. I just wanted a church with good light (I like photos) and one that was a bit more low key. Yes, even in a Catholic church they let us write our own vows! We were married at St Barts in Cape Elizabeth, ME. $300 first offering (church rental fee), then you pay musicians & the pastor too.

Transportation: Trolley from Mainly Tours. $600 for up to 4 hours, including gratuity.

Wedding Coordinator: Added her last minute, but a day-of coordinator is a must! Even if this is just a friend or family member who makes sure your plans are carried out you need this person! I spent $800. My coordinator was not terrible, but not fantastic either so I'm not going to recommend her or list her info.

Cake: We went for a bargain on this one, but it looked good & tasted good so who cares? And who eats cake when they're too busy partying & drinkin' ;) We used French's Cakes, but they're tiny & don't have a website. (How budget? Less than $2/slice) I told you that you'd have to pick some places to go with a budget option - this was ours.

Favors: I found cute little dress & tux boxes 10/$1 at the dollar store. I saw these online for $0.70+ each! Look around! We got little chocolates to put inside because who really wants another tiny little trinket? Chocolates were about 60 cents for each box.

(Keep in mind there were 2007 prices and for many items I worked with friends in the business & traded favors +$ ... so some prices aren't listed)

So, why else am I posting this? I want to help you know what a wedding costs and how to prioritize. Personally, I'm so busy I'm raising my prices. I'm actually not charging more I'm just only offering more coverage options. I'm now changing from a 4 to 5 hour minimum and only offering high end albums! By taking out minimal offerings I can do my job better by not letting clients cut corners to cut costs. A low cost option I will be offering is bridal portrait sittings. These will be after the wedding and give you a chance to dress up again and have a fashion shoot! These will not be exclusive to my wedding clients - anyone can book a session. Stay tuned more more info on that, or contact me: Katie (at) RingImages (dot) com.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My blogging for Stonewall Kichen

Speaking of other places my posts are appearing... I'm now also blogging for Stonewall Kitchen. I'm their photographer, check out my photo above, as well as on the social networking team. So, if you're looking for more of my blogging just head on over: Http://

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Wedding Tip #26 Bridesmaid & Groomsmen Duties


So now you're a bridesmaid or a groomsman... what's your job? Just keep in mind your #1 priority is helping the bride and groom and you'll be fine. Think of the best man and the maid/matron of honor as team captains. They're in charge of all the events and should delegate duties to the rest of the bridal party so they can help.


• Be supportive but honest. Tell her what you think; but only when she asks for your opinion! And... if she doesn't seem to like what you have to say - drop it! You can do it your way for your wedding.
• Purchase your dress & have alterations. Make sure you do this all on time so she doesn't have to bug you!
• If the groom is unavailable for tastings, registering or even to make the seating chart - be ready to step in and help your girl out!
• Don't complain about the dress, shoes or other bridesmaids (even if they are annoying)!
• Go to a dress fitting to learn how to bustle the bride's gown.
• Throw/attend bridal shower (the party may be thrown by family)
• Throw/attend bachelorette party
• Remind the bride to eat/drink enough water on her wedding day
• Hold the Bride's bouquet and fix her train during the ceremony
• If she throws her bouquet try and catch it - no one wants to see it hit the floor!


• Get fitted for & rent tux (Don't forget black socks)
• If the groom leaves for his honeymoon right away return his tux for him
• Throw/attend bachelor party
• Usher in guests
• Escort bridesmaids from the ceremony site and into the reception party
• Dance with bridesmaids, single guests, and even grandmothers!
• Have a good time, if you're dancing & enjoying yourself by bringing the fun more guests will follow your lead!


Full Bridal party:
• Show up, stand up, look good! (aka guys don't forget to shave and ladies give yourself a mani/pedi)
• Decorate the get-away car with "just married" and/or cans
• Throw an engagement party - if their family doesn't or as a "friends" party
• Attend the rehearsal and be cooperative and attentive!
• Put out fires! If anything doesn't go according to plan on wedding day do your best to fix it so the bride and groom have a fabulous time!
• Hold the rings
• Two bridal party members need to be the official witnesses and sign the marriage license (usually best man & maid of honor)


Give a toast! One of your most important jobs as the Best man and maid/matron of honor is giving a speech. Here are some tips for making a great best man or maid of honor speech!

• Add little bits about how you met the bride or groom and your relationship with them. However, it should not be all about that. Focus on what a cute couple they are, how they're prefect together, and stories about them as they first met until now.
• Give advice. This can be serious or silly, and it is especially good to give if you're married. You've heard it all before... "never go to bed angry," "It's all about compromise," "take care of each other"...

• Don't embarrass them. Remember, GRANDMA is there! (if you must say something risky say it at the bachelor/bachelorette parties or rehearsal dinner)
• Don't make it a novel. Keep it short and sweet so you don't lose anyone.
• Don't speak "off the cuff" unless you've very good and experienced at this type of speech giving! Make notecards
• Don't use too many inside jokes
• Don't make it all about you & the bride/groom. It's about THEM... as a couple! Not that you've know them since 1st grade and the childhood games you used to play...

Lines I've heard & liked:
• Tell him to cover her hand with his. Then tell him that's the last time he'll ever have the upper hand.
• Tell them that you hope that this is the day they are the least happy together, because then they'll only have happier and happier future days together.
• You knew they were really in love when he did x for her (like skipped watching a big game, drove hours just to see her...)


Thursday, August 6, 2009

Free books are awesome! :)

Check out what I got in my email today :) You better believe I'll review another photo book on my blog!

"Dear Katie:

At the suggestion of renowned historian Linda Gordon, author of DOROTHEA LANGE: A Life Beyond Limits [W. W. Norton & Company; October 19, 2009; $35.00 cloth], I’m contacting you to see if you’d be interested in considering her new book for a feature on your blog, particularly because you once did a post on Lange. Though Lange is widely regarded as the most influential American female photographer of the twentieth century, little has been previously published about the woman behind the camera until now.

Mother, artist, feminist, cripple, political activist, and environmentalist, Dorothea Lange was a complex figure whose life stretched across many eras of American history and many fields of culture. In DOROTHEA LANGE, Linda Gordon charts Lange’s journey from polio-ridden child to wife and mother, to San Francisco portrait photographer, to chronicler of the Great Depression and World War II. Over one hundred of Lange’s images—many of them previously unseen and some of them formerly suppressed—are reproduced in this book. Now, in the midst of another major depression, Lange’s unique photographic vision is as significant as ever.

Linda Gordon is the Florence Kelley Professor of History at New York University. She is the author of numerous books and won the Bancroft Prize for The Great Arizona Orphan Abduction. If you’re interested in covering the first comprehensive biography of Lange, please contact _______ with your shipping address to receive a copy or with any questions.



Thursday, July 30, 2009

Secret Blog reader role call?

Ok ladies & gentlemen... identify yourselves! (wink wink) But seriously - I get emails & Facebook messages from you all the time!

2 examples TODAY

Natalie says "I check your blog all the time, lol. I love seeing your work and tips! hmmm, I must be one of your top fans!"

Erin says "Katie I love your pictures! I was looking through them and thought maybe you could give me some tux advice...."

Often I even get comments from people who I didn't know were reading! (Or people who I don't know and stumble upon this) So, this is the post where if you're reading my ramblings you should comment. It can be simple, just your name. Go ahead, click the little comment button below. The curiosity is KILLING me! I can see I get lots of traffic - but who are you people? Also, if you comment with something you'd like me to blog about I'll even post it for you. I do love answering wedding questions!

Happy wedding planning, blog reading or photo gazing!

Speaking of photo gazing, here's an iced tea pitcher I shot for Stonewall. I like this one because it's bright and summery and that's the kind of mood I'm in today. :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Jim & Dee Preview


More photos of Jim & Dee to come... but for now a quick preview! As hard at work as I've been - I wanted to post something for them. More soon!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Frances Benjamin Johnston

A tribute to Frances Benjamin Johnston. She was one of the first women to make photography a career in the late 1800's and early 1900's, when it was still very much a man's all business was.

(All images from the library of congress online digital collections)

TITLE: Miss Frances Benjamin Johnston, 1332 V St., Washington, D.C., makes a business of photographic illustration and the writing of descriptive articles ... / Mills Thompson '95.

"Frances Benjamin Johnston (1864-1952) born in Grafton Virginia but was a resident of Washington DC for most of her long life. Johnston was an early photo-journalist and a noted freelance photographer; she was one of the first American women to achieve prominence as a photographer. Trained at the Académie Julian in Paris, she studied photography upon her return to Washington, D.C., in the mid-1880 and opened a professional studio circa 1890. Her family's social position gave Miss Johnston access to the First Family and leading Washington political figures and launched her career as a photojournalist and portrait photographer. One of her scoops as a correspondent for the Bain News Service was to board Admiral Dewey's flagship with a letter of introduction from Theodore Roosevelt and interview the "Hero of Manila Bay" en route from the Philippines. Johnston's documentary work was exemplary and included a renowned series of photographs commissioned by Booker T. Washington for the Hampton Institute in 1899 and the Tuskegee Institute in 1906. While she specialized in the photos of the powerful and elite she also on occasion did scenes of workers and working class life about 1905 she did a remarkable series of photographs depicting mechanics and laborers at work at the Naval Gun Factory.

Today the Library of Congress is the principal repository of the writings and photographs of Frances Benjamin Johnston. She was one of the first contributors to the Library's Pictorial Archives of Early American Architecture and executed a systematic survey of southern architecture with the support of the Carnegie Corporation." John Sharp,

TITLE: [Frances Benjamin Johnston, full-length portrait, standing in garden, right profile] photograph by Gertrude Käsebier.

Considering her bold career choice it strikes me as vastly appropriate that she chose to create portraits of herself dressed as a man.

TITLE: [Frances Benjamin Johnston, full-length self-portrait dressed as a man with false moustache, posed with bicycle, facing left]

The photograph below was considered outrageous because she chose to wear a man's cap and revealed way too much of her stockinged legs! Not to mention the beer & cigarette...

TITLE: [Frances Benjamin Johnston, full-length portrait, seated in front of fireplace, facing left, holding cigarette in one hand and a beer stein in the other, in her Washington, D.C. studio]

Frances Johnston inspires me and reminds me of a quote I once read "Well-behaved women rarely make history." -Laurel Thatcher Ulrich From Johnston's business choice and her provocative self-portraits you can tell that she must have been quite and outlandish woman for her time! While I am very much a girly-girl, I admire and respect the women who came before me who gave me a CHOICE in this. I am fortunate to be able to choose the career of photographer, or any career at all for that matter, and not be a societal misfit. Thank you Frances Benjamin Johnston!

Where did the sudden interest in Frances Johnston come from? I just started an amazing book, A Flickering Light, by Jane Kirkpatrick. It is historical novel about Jessie Anne Gaebele, photographer and the author's grandmother.

About 60 pages into the book, Jessie is just starting her job as a photographer's assistant. Her boss tells her about the photograph above and I just HAD to find a copy to see! It's too bad a copy of the image wasn't included in the book. I can't wait to learn more about Jessie Anne and the other female photographers Jane Kirkpatrick writes about in her novel.
(Jane Kirkpatrick's blog:

Friday, July 24, 2009

Lots of engagements!

So many engagement shoots... so little time! All within the last month, and I'm shooting Jim & Diane's engagement photos this weekend!

Kristin & Chris
see more photos @ Http://






Kristin says "Katie is an excellent photographer! She really listened to how we wanted to take our pictures instead of making us "pose" in ways that wouldn't be natural for us. She was able to now where and how to take the pictures that captured the best light and background. It was just a great overall experience and that was just for our engagement shots. I am even more confident now that our wedding pictures will be wonderful!"

Colleen & Mike
see more photos @ Http://






Colleen says "Thank you SO much for these photos!! I cannot stop smiling! I love them all, especially the ones I wasn't so sure of. I know we will have these for a long, long time, and I can't wait to share them with my friends and family. You definitely went above and beyond what we had in mind, in terms of background and poses. You definitely captured Mike and I in these photos and we just love them!"

Lindsey & Ryan
see more photos @ Http://






Lindsey says "Oh my goodness, I don't know what to say!!!! We're so incredibly happy with the photos and of course you're timing is just amazing! I'm so excited to have such amazing and natural pictures of the two of us. Thank you thank you thank you, from the bottom of our hearts!"

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Welcome Joey & this week's workshop

This week's workshop

This week I taught a photography workshop at the Worcester Museum of Art. Check our photos here:

It was QUITE a learning experience! I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such great kids. However, I've also learned that I think digital photography & my teaching skills are better suited to older audiences, and a group of kids AND one age group at a time - this group was ages 5-17! In the future I think I'll teach, high school, college and/or adults so I can really get into advanced concepts of photography. Although I do have to brag ... ask any of these kids what an aperture is and they could tell you!

Welcome Joey!

Born July 6th, photographed July 9th... posted July 19th! Still balancing the time to post to my blog and my job, oh right, make that jobs (plural)! ;) Good thing I like shooting food at Stonewall, teaching & weddings/portraits so much!





See more photos here:

There are a few things I learned from my first in-hospital portrait sitting! The first few days are busy! Everyone wants to visit and that makes for very crowded small rooms! If possible I think it would be best to set aside a small amount of time with no visitors so that we could focus on getting awesome photos! Speaking of awesome photos - I did love doing an in-hospital session. The first few moments a family has together are so special - they should be captured! There is photo of my mom holding me as an infant, and I remember seeing the photo as an adult and being able to tell how much she loved me in the moment. Powerful stuff like that deserves to be photographed. That's why my favorite shots are of Jackie kissing baby Joey and the new little family together on the bed. :)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Wedding Tip #25 - Photography, copyright, and getting all the facts up front from those you hire!

Background... There was a post in Wedding book from a bride who wanted her photographer to give her high resolution digital negatives & he refused to give her anything but low resolution images with proof #'s on them. She also made some mention of the photographer "doing the wedding as a favor" but I don't have all the info on that. There were a lot of comments on the thread but I threw in my 2 cents. I'm posting it because I hope it will be helpful to others. The advice about putting all your expectation in a contract is important for ANY wedding vendor you hire. I said:

"First, I'm so sorry to hear about your troubles! For anyone reading this and thinking of booking a photographer - this is why you put exactly what you are paying and what you are getting in writing! By having a contract with everything spelled out you know what the expectations are and can protect yourself.

As for "doing the wedding as a favor," if this is true they should have told you exactly what the discount they gave you was - their bad! However, you should consider what their advertised rates are, or average photo costs in your area, and then what they charged you. If they charged you substantially less they may consider having done your wedding as a favor even if you paid them. (I have no idea - but I'm only trying to guess at the situation)

At this point I think your best bet would be to discuss what the added cost would be for high resolution photos. Most photographers are more than willing to sell you this (myself included) especially if you order prints/album from them. I would also explain to them that you'd like to share photos on Facebook. I always provide Facebook photos for clients and include a tasteful watermark with my name. It's a win win - you get to show off photos & your photographer gets recognized for their awesome work.

The reason you pay extra for a disc is because that's how photographers make a living. Their fees are often broken up into shooting fees & print fees. I could go on to explain the rising costs of cameras, computers, advertising, online image hosting... but the bottom line is every photographer's business plan is different but there are a lot of costs many people don't think of (estimates are the photogs only keep 30% of their earnings after costs). What seems so unfortunate to me is that it doesn't look like your photographer explained their policies to you beforehand. You should always know the added costs for photos BEFORE booking a photographer!

If you are unable to negotiate this situation on your own, you may want to consider bringing in an intermediary, such as the better business bureau. However - they do not always side with the client, you'll need to be able to prove what you're entitled to so it's always best to work it out with the business first one-on-one first.

I wish you the best of luck!

Katie Ring (

P.S. Scanning professional prints or copying images from a website is illegal if you haven't paid to use the photos this way! (That's why there are copyright notices or watermarks on photos) It's just like stealing music - just because many people do it doesn't make it OK. The good news is photographers love having their work out there and many are more than willing to share digital copies with you. They just want their photos to be seen as high quality copies and to be given credit for their work."

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Meg's Trash the dress session

Here is last week's trash the dress session. Thanks to Meg for lots of fun and bravery to not only trash her dress ... but to do it in the rain! Luckily I can still do TTD sessions in the wet weather. The list of engagement sessions I need to reschedule keeps growing & growing! Rain rain go away!















And yes... to get these last shots I ended up going for a swim too!