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Sweet Sisters | Snow Session At Snowqualmie Pass, WA

Snow photo-sessions usually turn out extremely beautiful, but they are also some of the most challenging sessions to perform. You are dealing with so many elements that make it very difficult to enjoy the process.

That's why I was so glad that these sweet girls were such good troopers and made it so easy for me to take their pictures.

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Meet Destinee and Danika. They both had to endure cold, icy weather and pretend they were having fun doing it. No easy task for a twelve and a ten year old.

I personally can't stand being cold and do everything I can to keep everyone as comfortable as possible. We had warm blankets and girls had warm boots on so that helped a little bit.

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To ensure that the girls had to be in the cold as little as possible I would first pose them with their jackets on, then check my light and make sure I liked the composition, then the jackets had to come off and I tried to work as fast as I could to get good shots, and then the jackets and blankets would come back on.

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That definitely helped a little, but it was still not a very comfortable photo-session to say the least. And the girls were having such a good attitude during the entire shoot that it really helped to keep my stress level down a lot.

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As a photographer you always have to be prepared for the worst. The advantage of shooting outdoors is you get many beautiful backgrounds to work with, which helps to keep each session unique and one of a kind.

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Unfortunately outdoor sessions are the most unpredictable ones as well. You never know how the light is going to affect the subjects, the wind can ruin hair, it can start raining or snowing and you have to think quick of how to make the best of what Mother Nature is offering you at this moment.

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The challenge with this photo-session, besides the fact that it was so cold, was the sun. Sun can really be your enemy if you don't know how to use it properly, but it can also give you the most beautiful light if used correctly.

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If you're not careful you can end up with really ugly shadows on the subject's face and body. When I was just first starting out in photography I didn't understand the importance of light yet.

My eyes were not yet trained properly and so many times I would come back home thinking I got great pictures only to find them ruined by shadows I couldn't fix in Photoshop.

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If you are just starting out, my advice to you is to start taking many test pictures during different times of the day in different light situations, so you can really study the way light has an effect on your subject.

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I know it may be hard to find a willing test subject to go with you whenever you go so I recommend getting a life-size barbie doll or a mannequin. It may seem silly but it would really help you understand how to pose your clients and will save you a lot of heart ache and anxiety along the way.

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For this particular session I placed my subjects in front of the sun which gave it a really nice backlight and added much interest to the images. I had to underexpose the subjects a little to make sure their surroundings weren't blown out and I didn't loose much detail, and then I brought proper exposure to their faces in post processing.

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I used my trusted Canon 5d mark iii camera, and my Canon EF 70-200mm 2.8 lens. I love, love, love using this lens for most of my portrait outdoor shoots. It always provides me with sharp, crystal clear images. That sucker is not light either, I feel like I just did a work out every time I use this lens, but the results are so worth it.

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I can fix almost anything in photoshop, underexposed or overexposed images, bad background, color, etc..., but I can't fix blurry images. I really like sharp eyes and this lens delivers every time.

Below I've included some behind the scenes. Those are always fun to check out.

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If you are interested in a Fine Art Session, please contact me via e-mail at

We will be more than happy to book your appointment or answer any questions you may have.

To see more of Arina Sizemore child portraits please visit our children gallery for more images.

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