Friday, March 13, 2015

First Moments Photography: Portraits, Sessions and Classes to Leave You Speechless

If you've visited my About Me page at all in the past few years, you've had the pleasure of seeing these three photographs to help introduce you to my awesome family.

family portraits

Adorable, right? But... yes, I'll be honest, they're a bit outdated.

I mean, look at how teeny tiny Little Sister B is! And Big Sister E has lost most of those chubby cheeks as she has grown and slimmed into a tween. But can I help it that these, and the rest of the set that they came from, are probably my most favorite photos ever?

But these incredible photographs are only the tip of the iceberg for what is available from (and why I would wholeheartedly recommend) First Moments Photography to anyone in Madison, WI or its surrounding areas.

First Moments Photography logo

An artist in every definition of the word, Danielle of First Moments Photography offers the full range of customized options for couples, families and newborn babies in order to craft your perfect treasured memories.

Whether you prefer more posed, staged photos that portray classic, timeless images or more candid, lifestyle photos that capture the personalities and feelings of your family right in the moment, Danielle has the ability to make it happen. While just about anyone can pick up a camera and point it in the right direction, it is no secret that there is a tremendous amount of skill and talent needed for the results to turn into a memory that you want to display for a lifetime.

madison photographer
Images © First Moments Photography, please visit FirstMomentsPhoto.com for many more examples of Danielle's gorgeous work!
If you think that you could head to a generic chain photography store or simply pick any photographer from a list on the internet and find someone who is warm, kind, gentle, good with children, and has a million tricks up her sleeve to put the entire family at ease, then I urge you to reconsider. My family had photos taken once from a store visit and, while they turned out just fine, there's no comparison to the images that we received from First Moments Photography.

But Danielle's expertise extends beyond what she is able to do when she picks up her own camera, she also has a variety of options for those of us who want to learn or extend our knowledge as to how to best use our own DSLR cameras.

Considering that I have owned my Canon DSLR for quite a few months now but have never had the slightest clue as to how to do much more than turn it on to the Automatic setting, I couldn't have been more excited to check out Danielle's Beginner DSLR Camera Class.

beginner dslr camera class

I'll admit that, upon seeing that this DSLR & Beyond class is six hours long, I was immediately skeptical that it would end up a bit long and boring. How could it not?

However, from the moment the class began, introductions were made, and the first slide of the presentation was shown, I was... mesmerized.

Madison DSLR Camera Class

Danielle managed to take terms like aperture, f-stop, composition, metering, ISO, and more and not only break them down so that complete newbies like me would know what they meant, but so that I could actually understand them. And this was far from a lecture-type presentation where the instructor stands up in front and drones on, as Danielle instead uses her outline as a guide but takes her cues from the class as to where to focus more or less time.

Think you're someone who doesn't speak up or is too self-conscious to ask questions? I loved the way that Danielle made everyone there feel 100% comfortable and that there wasn't a single reason to feel embarrassed! No one is born knowing all of the ins and outs of photography, so why not ask for clarification from an expert who is more than willing to help explain and guide you?

Madison photography class

Whether we stayed inside to talk, discuss and practice, practice, practice...

photography tips

...or we ventured out into the beautiful spring weather of downtown Madison to see how the natural light affected the settings we were using for our photos, the day was filled with one learning experience after the next.

For instance, in theory I understood how changing the ISO setting on my camera (and therefore letting more or less light into the photograph) would have a difference on the resulting picture, but it took until I snapped a few photos of the capitol building before the light bulb in my brain went off and I knew I really got it!

madison capitol building

By the time the class ended, I realized not only that it flew by much faster than I had expected, but that I was a bit sad to say good-bye. I felt as though I had spent the day with friends (as opposed to strangers who happened to be in the same class) and Danielle had truly found the right mix of practicality, information, customization, personality and more to make the experience wonderful!

photography class madison

If you are anywhere in the Madison area and want to take your photography skills to the next level (or, like me, want to gain any skills at all), look no further than First Moments Photography. Danielle offers classes throughout the winter months for a variety of levels, so you can be sure that you'll find one suitable just for you.

While this was my first time learning about my DSLR, one of the other attendees had taken previous photography classes and confirmed my suspicions that Danielle's was FAR superior. Why sit in a back room of a photo studio and listen to someone read off facts and definitions when you can have individualized, personalized attention from an expert that is there to listen and teach at a one-on-one level (not to mention that after the class ends she is still fully accessible and willing to answer any emails or questions that you may have)?

Are you ready to take your photography to the next level or finally figure out what all of those settings and dials on your camera really mean? Then you absolutely must visit FirstMomentsPhoto.com to find out much more about all that Danielle has to offer and be sure to connect with her on Facebook and her blog, where you can find announcements about all of her class offerings, promotions, and more.

(Note: if you're looking to take DSLR & Beyond and have an amazing time like I did, make sure you head over and register soon, as the LAST CHANCE to take this class for 2015 is April 11th. Don't miss it!)

A big thank you to Danielle of First Moments Photography for providing me entrance to her DSLR & Beyond class, however, all thoughts and opinions expressed here and completely honest and my own.

27 comments:

Heather said...

I need to check this out. I "get" the whole ISO thing, but it sure doesn't show that I get it. I need to figure this out! Otherwise, what's the point of the fancy camera...right? ;)

Alissa said...

This looks like such a thorough class that could work for anyone looking to get themselves out of the "automatic setting" zone on their DSLRs (like me). I love that she gives each attendee such personal attention -- and the hands-on instruction and practice while you're there with her, so you can experiment with the different settings while someone is there to guide you through it. I'll be sure to share this with my Madison-area friends, and wish I still lived close enough to sign up for a class myself!

Michelle Martinka said...

Love those photos! I need to find time to take a class... I think being able to take better photos would be a great skill to have!

I am Harriet said...

I once took a class like that. I still seem to use my iphone though :(

Jeannette said...

These photos are stunning and the class sounds amazing! I'm always looking for ways to improve my photography!

Couponing Away Debt said...

These came out beautiful! I have alot to learn! I am trying to practice my technique as much as possible.

Trisha Grimes said...

This seems like such a great class to take! I don't own a DSLR but have it on my wish list. I will have to keep an eye out for a course like this when I do invest in one!

valmg said...

I took a photography course at the local college while pursuing my Associates. It was one of my favorite classes ever. Looking back now just going out and taking photos trying to get the best types of certain shots was a blast.

slehan said...

First I'd have to get a real camera. Looks like she knows what she's doing behind a camera and in a class.

slehan at juno dot com

Linda Manns Linneman said...

These are beautiful pictures. Someone has alot of talent and a good eye. Thank you for sharing

Liz Mays said...

I still shoot on auto so I could definitely use this type of class. I need to go to manual, but I am skeered! Really neat opportunity you had in taking this class!

Rebecca Orr said...

I need to get a good camera....and then I definitely need a class like this! I would love to be able to take nice pictures of my kiddos.

Avry said...

I need to get more savvy with my Camera.. so does my contributor on my blog. I know a lot more than her but she does most the posting lately so, I need to get her to learn a thing or two.

Jennifer H said...

Oh, I love how this is a hand-on camera course. I've been teaching myself via youtube videos. I need to look into a local class.

SensiblySara said...

I wish I were close so *I* could take that class!! Sounds like you learned a lot!

Carissa Pelletier said...

I'm soooo camera settings challenged I need a class for sure. I love the sun flare effect and also need to up my action shot game!

Melanie Walsh said...

It looks like you picked up some great skills. I can really tell the difference between the capitol photos.

B said...

This looks like so much fun. Lord knows I could definitely use a DLSR class!

C (Kid Things) said...

I would love to have a DSLR, my camera now is like an inbetween. But then all the settings are so intimidating. I would need a class like this, I'm sure.

Joy Williams said...

I recently took a DSLR class and it helped so much too. Now Fstop doesn't sound so greek and I actually use it! I encourage hands on classes for everyone to get to know their camera.

Kira O. said...

Been reading a lot on ways to maximize my DSLR potential. This course sounds like a great workshop.

Lisa said...

i totally need a class like this. I have no idea how to shoot outside of auto.

Whitney @ Momma Knows Best said...

Oh I could definitely benefit from a class like this! Admittedly most of my shooting occurs in auto :-/.

Stefani @ MommyEnterprises.com said...

That is great that she offers a DSLR class. I took a class at my local college so I could take photos in manual mode.

Stefani @ MommyEnterprises.com said...

That is great that she offers a DSLR class. I took a class at my local college so I could take photos in manual mode.

slehan said...

I've taken a couple of classes for my digital camera. Don't have a fancy one.

slehan at juno dot com

hope_exists said...

Photography is one of my hobbies, I just love it so much!!! Looks like you had a great time!!