Long time DSLR photography student Stacy invited me to her home to photograph her daughters for their family Christmas card. She said I could bring Kiki along as well (more about this below). This was an unusual shoot as Stacy worked with me to learn how to make portraits and I used much of her own photography gear (note the use of a Nikon D4 for all these shots!). I had shown her my wedding couple wrapped in Christmas lights shot before, which we did with the three sisters for the above image.
When editing this black & white image I wanted mainly the lights of the tree to be visible in the background framing the girls.
Using the new 2x teleconverter Stacy recently got, I took advantage of an effective 400mm focal length to create extreme bokeh in the background of the above shot of the same Christmas tree lights used in the B&W shot.
A more formal shot before the lit fireplace, which made things pretty hot for the girls, but throughout our shoot they were great and knew how to get into proper positions unprompted! It was like working with professional models!
Now when I try to photograph Kiki she is never happy about it and ends up looking like a sad puppy (see here). However, she was all too willing to get into every photo with the girls and smile! For the piano shot we let a sleeping dog lie and framed the portrait around her. She just wanted to participate and be involved!
It was a fun shoot and a chance for me to try a few new things shooting inside someone's home, as I most often shoot outside on location. I look forward to seeing the photos in print on Stacy's family Christmas card!