October is Family Portrait Month!

This October E.L. Photography will participate with an elite group of photographers around the country in a very special family portrait promotion. Throughout the month we will celebrate
“Family Portrait Month,” a wonderful opportunity for you update your family portrait (or portraits of your children), and help to support Operation Smile, which treats children around the world who suffer with cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities. Along with other members of Professional Photographers of America (PPA), we have pledged to
contribute $500 to PPA Charities, which has chosen Operation Smile as its charitable partner.

Your family portrait can create smiles and change lives! During Family portrait month - October 2012- we'll donate your $50 session fee to PPA Charities to benefit Operation Smile. Celebrate your family by helping a child! Appointments are limited!
Family portrait month is sponsored by PPA Charities. 

To schedule your appointment call Erica at 252-714-7881. Or you may complete the contact form at www.EricaLetchworth.com


Meredith's Bridal: Tryon Palace New Bern, NC

I have had the pleasure of working with the Davis family since last year as they prepared for the marriage of Meredith and Matthew. Their late June wedding was one of the sweetest ceremonies I have ever attended. I will post some of the of the images from their big day very soon. For now, I am thrilled to share some of Meredith bridal portraits. We had a rocky start with sprinkles that sent us running for cover. But soon the skies cleared and we had a fantastic time touring the gardens with our entourage of helpers. As you can see, Meredith is a gorgeous lady and has the sweet disposition to match. Here are a few of my favorite from our time at Tryon Palace.

For more information about portrait and wedding photography, please visit www.EricaLetchworth.com. 
Erica Letchworth E.L. Photography 252.714.7881 


Newborn Photography

Newborn photography has exploded in popularity. Working with these little wonders is challenging, fun and a fantastic creative outlet. I've had the opportunity to learn posing techniques from some of the industry's most prominent newborn photographers. I've learned how to safely pose a child, allocate assistants to achieve specific poses, and use the digital tools at my disposal to create the look I want. 

In recent months I have heard multiple stories and have seen evidence of photographers taking too many liberties with the safety of their newborn clients. In the spirit of sharing knowledge as well as promoting baby safety, I would like to share a tutorial on one way to create a prop portrait, safely.

To begin, make sure your little one is secure in or on and container or surface you place them on. Never leave an infant un attended.  Set up your pose, being careful not to push the little one too far or cause them any pain. Make certain that your assistant or a parent is nearby to steady the child's head and neck while you make your exposure. 

This image is Out Of Camera and you can see mom's hand is holding baby's head steady. Mom is less than a foot from her daughter throughout the shoot. 

Photo is post initial retouching and color balance. 
To begin the process, choose your lasso tool. This will allow you to make a selection of the right side of the photo that will ultimately camouflage the hand on the left side. 

Make the selection, copy and paste onto a new layer. 

the lighter are is the section of the photograph that has been copied and pasted onto a new layer

Flip the copied layer by selecting the copied layer, using your keyboard to choose option/command T, to transform. Then press control and use your mouse to click on the screen, select flip horizontal from the menu.

position the flipped copy to line up with the baby's face and natural head curve

create a layer mask and use a fluffy brush to erase the portion of the photo you do not want to show in the final image

layer masks

Check your mask edges and make sure you do not have anything left unblended. you can check this quickly by pressing the shift button and clicking on the layer mask.

Final image. Mommy's will always choose their baby's safety over a complicated pose. If you are just starting out, please use caution and consider taking a class that focuses on posing baby's safely. 

Disclaimer: There are a million ways to do this sort of photo work in photoshop, this is a technique that works for me and seemed perfect for this situation. Happy shooting!


Birthday girl!

pearls.. check
cake? ...check
& don't forget the cute

This little lady graced my studio for her birthday session. She was all kinds of cute and seemed to enjoy the grand finale..the sweetest polka dot cake I've ever seen. 

Here are a few of my favorites.

time to enjoy the cake.. without the paparazzi

Mommy & Me

Mommy & Me sessions have a very special place in my heart. A chance to make a memory and document the relationship that exists between a mother and her child. The photograph I treasure the most is a small discolored image of my mom and I when I was a little girl.  

I recently had the opportunity to witness a memory being made between Beth and her daughter. Here are a few of my favorites. 

Little Ms. A's Birthday Session

Silly, energetic & fashionable are all great qualities for a portrait subject to posses. Luckily, I received all three from little Ms. A at her big 5yr. birthday session. A's mama and I decided a fun urban kids session was the perfect choice for this exuberant little lady. Mom didi a great job on the wardrobe ( I LOVE the fedora!!) and A took care of the supply of cute! 
Here are a few of my favorites from out down town Goldsboro session. 


Tyndall Family

December is always full of crazy schedules, family functions, and the overall chaos of the holiday season. Of course it is the perfect time to schedule an experimental photo session with a  family of four! All kidding aside, The Tyndall family graciously volunteered to work with me to create some fun night portraits at the town center in Farmville. It was a very chilly night, but they smiled and posed and seemed to have a great time. They Tyndall girls are pros at posing and grinning for the camera. I can't wait to work with this family again this summer.

Thank you Tyndall family for being so great and forgiving as I worked through the challenges of night photography.

Here are a few of my favorites from our winter night session.