Friday, January 20, 2012

You are beautiful.

I receive emails weekly asking about all of this Ladies Night promotion stuff I've been doing the last couple of months. I quickly send my standard response with all of the details pertaining to the sessions. I have come to realize that the session details are barely valid without some in depth conversation to back them. So this is what we are having here; in depth conversation.

After doing a family session for an old friend this summer, she approached the boudoir subject with me. Yes! Of course I will do it! But instead of simply doing a single boudoir shoot, how about you bring your friends and we will make an evening of it?! And so it began. Ladies Night. Five amazing (and nervous!) women in one of the best hotels in Louisville.

Now is the time to mention the nerves. All of the women had approached the subject of their own body issues with me prior to the shoot. I am VERY aware of the body issues I have and would NEVER want anyone to be uncomfortable in front of my camera. They each had that one spot that they REALLY didn't like. I don't perform miracles, and this was made very clear ahead of time! I was also not going to nip and tuck through the power of a certain editing software. My goal with these women was to show them exactly how beautiful they really are. The images I wanted them to see would be natural. It would be them. I agreed to smooth skin and touch up stretch marks, but that was it.

Once these women got used to the camera, they loved it! We laughed (a lot!!) and joked even more! CRAZY FUN! They were total naturals! There was a new sense of love for their bodies. I encouraged them to embrace themselves the way that they are. Stretch marks, wrinkles, dimples, and all. Turn the imperfections into perfection and love yourself for it.

With the current media situation and women, I feel like we all (women) struggle to find ourselves. We want to be a few pounds lighter, or a little less jiggly. We beat ourselves up for not meeting the supermodel standard of the century. It's become a sick and sad epidemic. I am raising 2 little girls and I have 8 nieces. This is not the world I want them blossoming in. Constantly under scrutiny for being a different size than the girl on television.

Love yourself ladies. If not FOR yourself, for your daughters, nieces, and all of the little girls following in your footsteps. YOU are beautiful.

FYI: I told all of my clients I would NOT use their images on the internet. This fine lady gave me permission to post this one though :)

For more information on your own boudoir session, or if you are interested in hosting a boudoir party in your home with a few of your closest friends, shoot me an email at meganhilephotography@yahoo.com.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Baby Toes it is

If you follow my Facebook Fan Page, then you have heard about my fine art collection being on display at Breadworks, an amazing Fair Trade coffee and bread shop, for the entire month of December. This was SOOOOO weird for me! I am VERY modest, and to walk into the coffee shop I love so much and see my work (MY WORK!) on display...well...it was just weird.

I had 5 different pieces hanging. Four of these, I picked myself. The last one I was having a rough time choosing. I REALLY wanted to hang one of my ocean pieces (from the last post). I kind of get in this mood during the winter where I can think of nothing but sun, heat, water, and sand. Upon conversations with my hubby and my sister (the best barista in Louisville...go see her!), they voted NO on the ocean, and YES on baby toes. Wait. WHAT?! Baby toes?!?! The man and the, well, (if you knew her you'd understand) sister voted baby toes. Okey dokey. Baby Toes it is.

And there they hung. The Rainbow, The Duck, Flower, Prickly Ball Plants, and Baby Toes. For the entire month of the hustle and bustle, in and out, holiday season.  People looking at my art. People discussing my art. People critiquing my art.

I was scheduled to remove my pieces from the store on New Year's Eve. The next artist was a painter and would be hanging his work the following morning. As I checked my email on the 31st, I came across a message titled "Toes Picture at Breadworks in The Loop". Ha! It's even funnier when I type it out! Who would have thought?!?! Definitely not me! But this man wished to purchase my art, my work, my creation. He wanted to buy Baby Toes!

So, as I took my collection down from the walls that afternoon, I also sold my very first piece of fine art. And I closed out 2011 with a new view on my passion. I am not just a photographer. I am an artist. I see things that other people don't see, and I make them stand still. I make them stand still so that I am able to look into them forever. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Holy Copyright, Batman!

WARNING: THIS POST WILL BE FULL OF SUMMERY BEACHY TYPE PHOTOS BECAUSE THIS IS ALL I CAN THINK ABOUT RIGHT NOW. CLOSE YOUR EYES AND PRETEND EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE.

 Ahhhh, the old copyright speech. I see it everywhere. It's all over fellow photographer's Facebook pages, it's all over blogs, it's pasted on each individual image EVERYWHERE. Not just the copyright phrases, but also paired with a nice, big watermark dead center on the images that go along with it. I see it and cringe. I even tried it briefly, but quickly decided against. I like to see my work. I like other people to see my work. I want my clients and fans to really enjoy flipping through my art. I want it to be showcased in the best possible way, and REALLY don't want to have to slap a giant symbol on the top, possibly destroying the nature of my work. With this said, I knew it would come back to bite me hard one day. Today was that day.

While I wasn't one of the unfortunate one's to literally have an image "stolen" from me (thank you, thank you, thank you), I received a good slap in the face with the reality of the internet. Oh, it felt great! I was warned. Yep. Warned. Not just the internet reality, but the one hour photo reality, too.



Since the beginning of Megan Hile Photography, I have generously offered a CD to all of my clients. I felt that this was the best option to deliver your images to you. I wanted you to have them, keep them, use them, cherish them. You know? Like I do. Because truth be told, this is my PASSION. These photo shoots I do are a part of me. EVERY SINGLE SESSION is engraved in my memory. The love that I hold for my "job" creates your images. It shows in your images. And while these are your images and always will be, they are mine.




 I love that all of my clients love to share their portraits. This, my friends, is what my job is all about. The social networking that comes to play in my position is SO MUCH FUN! I love looking through other photog's art, and I love knowing that my art is circulating out there in the Never Never Land of the internet world, as well. What I don't like to see is that some of my images are no longer protected the way I would like them to be. This is a major mistake on my part, and I take 100% responsibility for it. I am not only thinking of protecting my images and my business, but I also want you, your family, and your children to be protected as well. When images of my work are floating around with no watermark on them,  it opens myself and my clients up to many different types of cyber weirdness (and if you know me, I'm not down with the cyber weirdness. It's amazing I ever even got an e-mail address).



With each CD I deliver, I include printing instructions. Although the best quality you can get from a print would be to order directly through me, I do offer suggestions and recommendations for using your CD. I know that once the disk leaves my home, it's just out of my control (oh, did I mention I really dislike the out of control thing?). Recently, I have seen a few prints made of my work by one hour photo spots around town. I've also seen a few examples from a couple popular, unnamed online ordering places (think really hard and I'm sure you can come up with a couple). While I attempt to persuade against printing with these nameless companies, I understand completely that it is still going to happen.


 Although I realize these companies are "cheap" to print with, the quality is T-E-R-R-I-B-L-E. And in some situations, just plain horrid. I try REALLY hard not to be a print snob, and I think I do a pretty good job of this. But with the hours of time I spend on perfecting your images, and the amount of money I spend on finding the perfect product and calibrating monitors to print perfectly, I want my art to mirror the efforts I put into it.

 While in 2012, I will still be offering the option of having your images added to a CD, I will be focusing more on helping you choose the perfect prints and products of your favorite portraits. I want you to not only love your session and the results, but I want you to be WOWED. I want your jaw to hit the floor when you open your Megan Hile Photography packages. I am dedicating 2012 to decorating your walls, replacing the old photos that have been hanging there for years, and revamping your house! We're doing makeovers in 2012!!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

My, oh my.

October. This is the month I last made a blog post. Yep. Right before Halloween. Yep. That pretty much sums up my life. Once Halloween hits, the holidays suck me in like a tornado. They pick me up, swirl me around, toss me through the sky a few times, and then place me back down on my own 2 feet. Solid ground. Ahhhh. Solid ground, how happy I am to see you again.

I had all great intentions of doing a whole Year in Review thing. You know, like all of the best images of 2011? Yep. It's 2012 now. I missed my deadline by about 24 hours. To be quite honest with you all though, it would be impossible for me to pick these images. There are SO MANY. Way too many for any average Joe (or Meg) to just click through and throw into a single blog post. Truth be told, you guys are just too beautiful. You, my clients, have spoiled me ROTTEN this year. Spoiled, spoiled, spoiled. NEVER have I had to admit this before! Your gorgeous kids, your sweet expressions, your amazing comments and posts, all of the love and support of this not-so-new-anymore, local business. Wow. Just. Wow. I have no idea what I have done to deserve such giving people in my life, but I am truly thankful for each and EVERY one of you.

So, instead of creating the "Best Of" post, I am sitting here creating the "Thank You" post. And thanking you simply doesn't feel like enough. In the year 2012,  I vow to pay it forward. In what ways? Well, I haven't gotten this far yet. But let me tell you, it will happen. Bound and determined (and a determined me is quite a force...red-haired-middle-child thing), I WILL be paying forward the gratitude, love, and unconditional support you have all shown me in 2011. And when it happens, you will be the 1st to know.

So for now? For now I leave you with these words borrowed from a friend:
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You are enough.
You are okay as you are right now.
You are not behind. You are exactly where you're supposed to be.
There is nothing else you should be doing except what you're doing right now.
Be where you are. Inhabit the space you're in. Know that you are safe.
Those shoulds don't have to run you. They're all just stories -- and are therefore negotiable.
Take a breath and remember this.
You can choose.
You can choose what you say yes to and what you release.
You are powerful.
And your time on the earth is precious. So, you can choose to use your time to love yourself. And others. You can choose to do only what you love.
You are worth it. You are worth the effort.
May you resolve to be completely, wonderfully, and unapologetically yourself this season. May you unwrap and discover the gift that is you.
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Happy 2012


























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