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One opening left in November!

Check out the look of joy on little Aly’s face…isn’t she a bundle of cuteness?

Just a heads up that while I was booked full for November just 24 hours ago, today I have an opening on the evening of November 27th, the weekend after Thanksgiving. If you are looking to squeeze in some pictures before it’s too late to put them on your annual Christmas card, let me know…first come, first served, yadda, yadda.

Session fees right now are only $150 for an hour. I do a 30-minute version as well for half that cost if you are on a budget. Price includes the DVD of all images.

Otherwise, plenty of openings in December if you are looking for a shoot where you are all bundled up with jackets and scarves! Okay, this is Arizona, who am I kidding…we’ll still all be wearing shorts and sandals.

You can book a shoot by using the form at the bottom of this page. OR email me: mikeolbinski @ gmail (dot) com

Photoshoot: The Kleins 2010 {gilbert family photographer}

The Kleins have been good friends of ours for a lot of years now and it’s so awesome to see these girls grow up right before our eyes. And speaking of eyes…each of these girls has eyes that photographers love to shoot. Sparkling, bright, blue…photogenic.

Thanks so much guys for letting me shoot you guys once again…you are an amazing family!

(PS. They already sent me a proof of their Christmas card this year made up of about 5 of the photos we got from this shoot…looks awesome!)

Photoshoot: The Hillis Family {gilbert family photographer}

The Hillis family have pictures taken every year around their 8-year old Isaac’s birthday, just in time for Christmas and the holidays.  I was lucky enough to get to shoot them this time around in a quick little meetup in downtown Gilbert. For those families on a budget or looking for some simple group shots of the family for X-Mas cards, I’m doing short, 30-minute sessions for $75. If interested, let me know via the contact form on the Portraits page!

Amazingly, we still squeezed in a decent amount of poses and even a wardrobe change into half-an-hour. A beautiful family with a cutie little dog named Luigi who only pays attention to you if you whistle loud or yell “Birdies!” I think I sounded like a broken record at the end trying to get that fluffy ball of fur to look at me!

Had a lot of fun you guys, thanks for allowing me into your lives for this wee bit of time!

My brown-eyed girl

Those that follow my work closely know that besides chasing storms and loving HDR photography, I have also become quite addicted to portraiture and doing photoshoots for clients. I’ve done everything from a maternity shoot to baby showers and engagements. It’s a lot of fun and a part of my little business that continues to grow and be rewarding for me.

What I really love though are the kids and capturing their little faces, the innocent moments and random things they do. Like yesterday’s post with the family on the beach. Their little girl just stared at the ocean, walked around, and left footprints here and there. They are easy to photograph. Sure, sometimes you want them to just sit peacefully for a moment so you can get that perfect shot, but a lot of times, you just need to follow them around.

Which brings us to this picture above. My daughter Lyla. Who could ever grasp the love a dad has for his little girl until they have that same relationship? I for sure never knew what a face like that could do to me.

Lyla is always moving…running to the next place, running down the aisle in the grocery store…running everywhere. She does an amazing amount of running for a 21-month old. Capturing her in a perfect, quiet state is sometimes difficult.

On occasion though, she stops…and you get moments like this. I only took this over the weekend, but it’s already one of my favorites of her.

Photoshoot: The Eeds {chandler family photographer}

We planned a big vacation with a group of friends for this past weekend in San Diego. One of the families that has a newborn little boy named Wyatt had been wanting some new portrait shots done and had the great idea of doing them on the beach whilst out in California.

I’ve never done much photography on a beach before, so figuring the lighting out, the backgrounds and angles was something I learned on the fly. Loved the setting though…I can’t get over how awesome the light was from the setting sun. The shots you can do are endless and I only wish I lived closer to a place like this so I could get more practice at it.

These are some of my favorite photos from the shoot…thanks so much to the Eeds family for inviting me to do this for them!

A few moments captured in Amsterdam

Sometimes you can get too attached to one kind of shot, one kind of lens and you forget that the world can be seen in a wide variety of ways. My first instinct when I landed in Holland was to capture EVERYTHING, hence my 17-35mm was the lens of choice. I wanted architecture, wide plazas, canals, cars, anything and everything…but in a wide scope.

For the first half of the trip, my 50mm 1.4 sat in the bag. But while I was in Bruges, I switched about halfway through and was thrilled at the shots I was getting. Tight shots, taking more time to compose and see what I wanted to get in the frame and mostly, the ability to get some great candid shots with my favorite lens.

There is no doubt…I can try to take candid shots with the wide angle, and sometimes they may work, but the 50mm feels like a weapon in my hands. How I love thee!

These are just a few random candid shots from Amsterdam on our last night there. Nothing earth-shattering, but I love these little peaks into the life of the city.

I read once that sometimes “travel photography” is more about capturing the people and moments, and not necessarily every famous structure or object. Everyone has seen the EiffelTower, but perhaps people haven’t seen a hard-working waitress at a little cafe down a quiet street.

It all depends on what you like. I happen to enjoy all of it.

(You can see more of my Holland pictures here: Holland Trip)

Photoshoot: Zane and Rhiannon

Zane and Rhiannon…a fun shoot out at one of my favorite places in the world, Joe’s Farm Grill. It’s tough to not want to use this place for every photoshoot I do, but it’s so beautiful. The old buildings, that wagon, the St. Augustine grass, the grape vine archway…I’m in love with it.

Thanks to these two kids and daddy Nate for letting me capture a few memories for you guys and hopefully mommy loves her birthday present!

The slideshow is just a few of my favorites from the shoot, ended up with a ton to choose from!

Another sneak peak at Zane and Rhiannon

I’m still editing the photos from the little shoot we did Monday night, but I can’t get far before the desire to post a few of them gets the better of me. Both of these kids were too cute for words and an absolute blast to work with.

In the shot above, you can see it’s a black and white except for the eyes. That’s not fake color there, I just allowed the blue from the color version of this photo to remain while the rest went B&W. Such amazingly blue eyes!

And how cute is Rhiannon? She loves getting her picture taken, so she stood in this spot throwing me a bunch of funny little poses. Love this one below, in her brand new dress.

Sneak peak: Brand new baby Wyatt

As some of you know, I have a full-time job that doesn’t involve photography and the last few days have been long, tedious and tiring. After about 10 hours today, I drove across Phoenix in rush hour traffic to meet my wife, daughter and our friends who just had their second child in the wee hours of Friday morning. My wife made them a delicious dinner and I was going to take a few shots of Wyatt along with his big sister Rachel.

Photography is such a blessing to me. After such a draining day, I got to take pictures of this cute newborn baby and then when I got home to process them, his little face made me smile over and over. Suddenly a downer of a day ends on a happy note…how awesome is that?

Looking forward to watching Wyatt grow up!

Welcome to the world baby Wyatt

Our very good friends Tyler and Sara had their second child in the wee early hours of Saturday morning and his name was Wyatt. A cute little guy, apparently does nothing but sleep and whimper so very sweetly. I’m sure the tired parents are hoping that trend continues.

Just two shots of this guy from our quick visit to see them yesterday.