Tis the Season to Take Fun Christmas Pics

Here’s a few links to get you inspired for taking photos with Christmas lights:





If you find the magic combination of settings for perfect Christmas lights, please share it here!  I’ve played around with some of these ideas, but I still have not been able to get the tree starburst just right yet. 🙂  Enjoy…and Happy Tuesday!


Check out Lemon Drop Presets for Lightroom!

Check out my first ever LR preset sampling for your viewing pleasure!  Today I am sharing with you some sample photos that I edited using “Collection One” from Lemon Drop Presets.  This particular preset pack only costs $9.99.  So far, I’m pretty pleased with this preset pack overall.  With any preset pack I purchase, I usually have a couple that I will probably never use.  For this pack, I only found one that I probably won’t use much.  It’s called “life.”  It has a lot of red in it and it’s just not my editing style, but you might like it so don’t let my opinion of it dissuade you! 🙂  Also, “autumn surprise” and “pretty me” are somewhat similar, but “autumn surprise” has a little more blacks making it slightly darker.  I like them both!  I find most of them to be unique ways of altering the coloration so I’m excited to be able to reuse them for different editing effects in the future.  For this post, I want to show you the unedited image along with the same photograph edited using each preset in the 12 pack.  Just like with any preset I ever purchase, I tend to tweak it slightly (depending on the photo and its exposure) to get it closer to my liking by altering the exposure, fill light, or brightness, if needed, and decreasing blacks when necessary or decreasing sharpness or recovery (I like babies to have a softer look so I don’t tend to go extreme with sharpening.)  I only had to tweak a few things because many of them were pretty close to my liking!  I hope to show you more preset samplings from Lemon Drop Presets in the future!  Please check out my facebook page for more photo samples using these presets!

PS. Isn’t baby Hayley precious?  I was smitten immediately! 🙂

PPS.  If you take my Lightroom class coming up in February 2012 (details on my website at www.raindancerstudios.com), you will be able to receive a discount on Lemon Drop Presets!

SOOC- straight out of camera BEFORE editing!!

edited with 1960

edited with lincoln

edited with nero

edited with eden

edited with fashion week

edited with life

edited with innocence

edited with wiesman

edited with old school

edited with autumn surprise

edited with summer love

edited with pretty me

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Looking for a gift that keeps on giving?  Give the gift of a photography class to your loved one!  If you own a DSLR (or will after Christmas!) don’t sit on it without understanding how to use it like I did for several years.  Learning what the buttons do will transform your photos!  If you know how to use your camera, take the next step!  Learn more about photo composition, editing, and lighting!


Beginner Class:

DSLR Camera Class (4-5 hours)- $100

Want to learn how to use that fancy camera of yours?  Here’s your chance.  This is a hands-on class with opportunities for guided practice and independent practice.  You will learn how to shoot in Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, & Manual Mode.  Here are topics and terms you will learn: ISO, white balance, aperture, shutter speed, exposure, light metering, f-stop, focus modes, etc…  A class handbook is provided for use during the class and for extra practice at home.

Next class: Saturday, January 21st from 9am-2pm


Beginner/Intermediate Classes:

Photo Composition & Intro to Lifestyle Photography (New Addition to the Class!!) (4 hours)- $110

Want to know what makes a photo visually pleasing to the eye?  There are photography elements and rules that work together to make photos good.  Here’s your opportunity to study and critique photographs, practice using the elements of composition, and transforming your photos by incorporating the theory of lifestyle photography.  Lifestyle photography is where my heart lies because it captures real life.  It is not posed happiness…it is authentic joy. It is not beneficial for just pro photographers but all people who like to take pictures because it will enhance your own personal family photos and memory making as well.  Learn tips on how to take photos with authentic emotion. This 4 hour class will include guided hands-on practice incorporating photography elements in photos and a closer look into capturing sweet family moments that are more expressive and authentic of daily life.  A class handbook is provided for use during the class and at home.

Next class: Saturday, March 3rd from 9am-1pm

Editing with Lightroom (4 hours)- $110 (NEW!)

Want to take your photos to the next level?  Learn how to use the Lightroom 3 Editing Software.  You will learn a “workflow,” from start to finish, along with a number of helpful tips.  Please bring your laptop, if you have one, for hands-on learning.  Free monthly trials of Lightroom 3 can be downloaded online.

Next class: Saturday, February 11th from 9am-1pm

Advanced Classes:

Lighting: Natural Light Techniques & Speedlighting (4 hours)- $120 (NEW!)

Want to know how to shoot in all different types of lighting situations?  This class is a great opportunity to learn front lighting, side lighting, and back lighting as well as how to use a reflector, a diffuser, a speedlight (external flash), flash triggers, a softbox, and a basic light stand with umbrella.   You will learn how to create sunflares, silouettes, and catchlights as well as tips for overcoming difficult lighting situations.  This class will be a 50/50 split of natural light photography and speedlighting, which will provide a well-rounded understanding of lighting.  Please bring your external flash if you have one, for this hands-on class. A class handbook is provided for use during the class and at home.

Next class: Saturday, March 31st from 9am-1pm

Private Instruction:

Individualized and personalized instruction & mentoring-

$80/hour at location of my choice

$100/hour at location of your choice in the Indianapolis area

*All classes are taught with a multi-sensory approach for all styles of learning.  All classes require a minimum of 5 people to run the class.  Most classes are taught at the Central Library in downtown Indy.  If you are interested in a particular class but are unable to attend a class date listed, please contact me with your availability.  Class dates may change based on majority availability.  For more information regarding future classes, please contact Jill at raindancerstudios@gmail.com or 374.8713.