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I love coffee. Sometimes people try to switch my coffee to decaf when I’m not looking. I can always tell the difference. I also like Pringles, but only the reduced fat kind because they crunch better when you bite into them and they don’t leave grease on your fingers. I’m…

About Me
celebrate-survival-email-21

As part of our quest to support women’s issues, Katana Photography is excited to announce our first ever Celebrating Survival contest!
Having any kind of cancer is frightening and confusing. In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Katana Photography is welcoming all survivors from all forms of cancer to participate…

Weekly Photo
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When I was looking to buy my wedding invitations (back in April), I found a lot of designers on Etsy. After narrowing it down to a couple different designs/companies, I contacted both for their pricing list. One was pretty significantly more expensive–almost $2 per invitation more. Which I think all…

Weekly Style
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When talking to people about photography, I hear one phrase over and over again: Kids and dogs are the hardest subjects to photograph.
I, personally, don’t have this problem with my clients…kids and dogs are among my favorite things to photograph. Maybe it’s because I like to have any excuse…

Weekly Puppies
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Last week, Sean and I had our morning coffee on the balcony and watched as the Enterprise shuttle was pulled down the Hudson on a tug boat. It’s on its way to the Intrepid and I can’t wait to see it up close at the museum!

Weekly Coffee

Announcing Our First Annual Celebrating Survival Contest!!

Announcing Our First Annual Celebrating Survival Contest!!

As part of our quest to support women’s issues, Katana Photography is excited to announce our first ever Celebrating Survival contest!

Having any kind of cancer is frightening and confusing. In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Katana Photography is welcoming all survivors from all forms of cancer to participate in the Celebrating Survival contest this year to win a free glamour/boudoir shoot with photographer, Colleen Katana.

Research shows us that the impact of breast cancer can be minimized with accurate information. Colleen Katana, owner/photographer at Katana Photography, is committed to supporting this cause and proud to be providing New York women a place to be photographed in a way that builds confidence about their bodies once again. The pampering that occurs during a Katana Photography glamour portrait session helps ease feelings of vulnerability. After surviving such a serious health challenge, women sometimes feel betrayed by their bodies. The final photographs help to bridge that gap, building peace and self-assurance. These stunning images provide the final proof: You are not a patient; you are a survivor. And you are stronger and more beautiful than ever.

Beginning on October 1st, 2012 and ending on October 31st, 2012, Katana Photography will be accepting entries to win a complimentary Glamour or Boudoir Photography session, valued at $499. Entering the contest is easy, simply send us your survival story along with one or two photos of you and we will post the entries on our blog. Then you, the readers, will choose the contest winner based on the person receiving the most number of votes. The winner will be treated to professional hair styling and makeup application and a sixty-minute portrait session.

All finalists will receive a gift certificate toward a Katana Photography glamour or boudoir portrait session. In addition, Katana Photography will contribute a portion of all proceeds for the month of October towards breast cancer research.

To enter the contest:

This contest is for any woman who currently has cancer or has survived cancer in any form.

Please email your story to colleen@katana-photography with the subject line: SURVIVOR CONTEST. Send a picture of yourself and any other photos you would like to share.

Your first name and images will be posted on our Facebook page and Blog for our readers to view and vote on.

Feel free to nominate a deserving friend – just please ask their permission first and send us their contact information so that we can get their confirmation.

We will be accepting entries until October 31, 2012.

Viewers can cast their votes through November 14th and the winner will be announced on November 15th.

Good luck and we look forward to hearing your amazing stories!

The Bigger Picture

When I was looking to buy my wedding invitations (back in April), I found a lot of designers on Etsy. After narrowing it down to a couple different designs/companies, I contacted both for their pricing list. One was pretty significantly more expensive–almost $2 per invitation more. Which I think all people who’ve planned a wedding realize that can add up PRETTY quickly.

The second invitation design, I liked almost as much and was $2 cheaper. I liked it enough to save that money. After corresponding with the designer over the course of a few days, I asked how she can accept payment. We were hoping to put the cost on our credit card (preferable with Paypal since I know it can sometimes be easiest) in order to gain miles.

At that point, she said she preferred checks or cash. She claimed to not use Paypal at all. And if we were to pay credit card, she uses (insert name of an online credit company akin to Paypal). AND with this particular credit card company, she had to charge us an extra 15%. Ok. Wow. One inaccuracy at a time! She had her products listed on Etsy. I am pretty sure that Etsy requires all payment through Paypal. I felt lied to. Paypal is ridiculously easy AND includes seller and buyer protection, so I would have felt more comfortable paying that way. The fact she works in an online selling biz and doesn’t have a paypal account? Red flag. An extra 15% charge!?!?!?! Absolutely ludicrous. Any credibility she may have had was completely lost at that exact moment.

Could I have sent her a check and avoided that additional charge? OF COURSE. Did I want to hire her after feeling as though she were trying to take advantage of me? DEFINITELY NOT. The point is, she lost a VERY large sale (as my family is enormous and we had tons of invitations to send out) because she didn’t want to accept a payment via credit card. Not to mention, you don’t have any protection by just mailing someone a check…for all I knew, she could have just disappeared after receiving the first payment. Do I THINK that would have happened? No. But I wasn’t willing to take the chance.

In terms of a business decision, this was a poor choice. I ended up going with the more expensive designer–whose work was FABULOUS by the way. It was worth the extra money to not feel taken advantage of and to be investing in someone I trusted.

That fabulous designer I used is Erica Morgan Long of WickedBride.com. I won’t post the actual invitation (because, really? I don’t want y’all all showin up on my wedding day!!! =0) But, here is a picture of the wedding card design we went with as found on her Etsy page.

The Bigger Picture

Kids and Pets

Kids and Pets

When talking to people about photography, I hear one phrase over and over again: Kids and dogs are the hardest subjects to photograph.

I, personally, don’t have this problem with my clients…kids and dogs are among my favorite things to photograph. Maybe it’s because I like to have any excuse to cuddle with both.

Another complaint I hear a lot, mostly from people using point and shoot cameras or flashes, is that black dogs particularly don’t photograph well. I would agree that black dogs are harder to expose correctly and you’re more likely to get that dreaded demon-dog eye thing that happens with the flash. But my advice is get that dog outside and in open shade–then lower your f-stop! It’s the same advice most of us give for photographing just about ANYTHING. Always focus on the eyes, because once you open the shutter up you’re likely to have some drop off of focus. And put your shutter speed as fast as you can with the light your given–this is particularly important for kids and pets!

This image was shot with an ISO of 160, 1/320 of a second, f/3.5

Happy shooting!

Angela’s Boudoir Session

This is Angela–an actress living here in NYC with such a glowing personality, you can’t help but see it shine through in the imagery. Over the past couple of years, Angela’s gone through some amazing changes in the past couple of years; a very transitional period for her and she could not be more gorgeous….on the inside AND the outside.

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Angelas Boudoir Session

Sneak Peek of Carolina’s Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Here’s a quick sneak peek of Carolina’s boudoir and glamour shoot! I couldn’t resist editing a few of my faves as soon as she left. Lots more to come soon!

Sneak Peek of Carolinas Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Sneak Peek of Carolinas Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Sneak Peek of Carolinas Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Sneak Peek of Carolinas Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Sneak Peek of Carolinas Boudoir/Beauty Session!

Takin’ Off…

Tomorrow early, early morning, Sean and I are off to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico to photograph Julia and Juan’s wedding! This little town is supposed to be absolutely lovely and I’ve been so excited for months. And then I looked at the weather report down there…

Thunderstorms. All. Weekend. Long. =0(

It will STILL be a beautiful wedding, but a little piece of my soul just died with that discovery.

Shuttle Coffee

Last week, Sean and I had our morning coffee on the balcony and watched as the Enterprise shuttle was pulled down the Hudson on a tug boat. It’s on its way to the Intrepid and I can’t wait to see it up close at the museum!

Shuttle Coffee

Shuttle Coffee

Shuttle Coffee

Bubble Time

Ok, so I don’t have a picture of this–yes, I know I’m a photographer, but some things I only HEAR about. I don’t see! That’s not a good enough excuse? ::sigh:: ok, I’ll work on it. But in the meantime–to my mommy readers out there (and my young at heart adult readers too), I saw this post on Pinterest which was amaaaaaazing!

Step 1: Cut open a glow stick.

Step 2: Pour contents into a bubble solution.

Result? GLOW IN THE DARK BUBBLES!!!!

See? Amazing.

Sameer Newborn

Sameer is the newest family member to one of my past brides! Lisa and Vivek welcomed baby Sameer or “Sam” into their lives about a month ago. Their wedding was one of my most amazing and beautiful events I had ever witnessed. Lisa is Jewish and Vivek in Hindi–Two very different backgrounds, but the families meshed so beautifully, it literally brought tears to my eyes. And even now, their mothers still talk on the phone once a week and the in laws plan trips to visit each other–sometimes without Lisa and Vivek.  My absolute favorite line from Sameer’s photo session was when Lisa told me they call Sam their own little “Hin-Jew!” LOVE IT! Congratulations, you guys. He is absolutely perfect!

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Sameer Newborn

Liz’s Boudoir Session Slideshow

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Lizs Boudoir Session Slideshow

Here’s a video featuring my editor’s picks from the beautiful and sweet Liz’s boudoir session! Click on the link and watch the video!