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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
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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

Bootyfull. Yep, That’s Me.

While I visited home a few weeks ago, Bebop got to play with my niece, Adelynn for the first time. Well, actually, they met initially at Christmas, But Addie was too surrounded by sugar and presents to care about the chihuahua nipping at her heels. And not that I can blame her–I mean, PRESENTS! And COOKIES! And CANDY CANES! It still doesn’t get any better than candy canes and hot chocolate in my book.

But on this trip, the two really took to each other. Bebop liked having another creature to run and play with and Adelynn liked having an “Addie sized dog” as she liked to call Bebop.

Las week, apparently Adelynn and Bridget were looking at my blog and Bridget was showing Addie her the photos from her photo session. Adelynn saw Bebop’s picture first and yelled, “It’s Bebowp!” Then she saw her own photos (which were obviously much more exciting) to which she exclaimed, “And dere’s Addie! And Auwnt Colleen! We look alike…aren’t we bootyfull, mommy?”

God, I love that kid. I mean, I love anyone who calls me beautiful…but when said by a three year old? The cuteness is heart-melting.

There were cuter photos of Addie smiling with Bebop….but this one is my favorite. I especially love that she’s picking her nose.

Bootyfull. Yep, Thats Me.

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

This is Brody. I shot Brody’s 4 month pictures as well as his school portraits at his Daycare in Hoboken. And now I got to share in his first birthday portraits! These were literally taken on the day of his birthday and his mommy Kristy bought a special cake JUST for smashing. It might have been the cutest and funniest moment when he didn’t dive right in!

We all expected him to go head first into the icing, but he was so hesitant…like he was gonna get in trouble. We had to physically dip his hands in and force him to taste it. And even after that, he was still hesitant. Eventually, Kristy just had to pick him up and sit him on top of the cake!

I miss this little guy already (even though I just saw him in May)!

Another noteworthy moment…there’s a photo below where he’s standing in the basket–that was his FIRST EVER stand without holding onto something! He fell shortly after, but I caught the moment!

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

Big Man Brody {Hoboken Baby Photographer}

A Quick Explanation of Copyright

I get this question a lot from clients, other photographers, friends, parents, etc. Who owns the copyright?

And it’s a very touchy subject–because a lot of times, clients think that it’s a studio’s policy to not release a copyright or to retain it. In actuality–it’s not our choice. It’s the law…it’s just the way it is.

My understanding of the laws (which I’ll admit, even for ALL the research I’ve done, I still learn something new everyday) is that the person who creates the art, be it painter, sketch artist or photographer, owns the copyright. In copyright terms, it doesn’t matter that the photograph is of you–it matters that I am the one who took the photograph.

And it doesn’t quite work as easy as “releasing the copyright” to another person. The only time I’ve ever heard of that is in a work for hire situation in which case the pay is very, very high. However, there is an option to allow printing rights on images–this is what most photographers do. But it’s still not the same as releasing a copyright. With this license, you have the ability to print your own images, however you could not turn around and sell that image to Coca-Cola and make a profit off of the photographer’s work.

For this reason, be cautious of the photographer who is easily willing to “release the copyright” of all their images to you. It’s likely that if they’re doing this for little or no money, they probably don’t understand the business that they’re in very well. When I just began my business, I did allow printing rights for all the images, but I’ve quickly learned that you can’t earn a living that way. Like I said, I’ve been doing this for years and there’s still a lot that I don’t understand. I even WORKED in a licensing department at both a publishing house and a television studio and I still don’t have as firm a grasp as I’d like on copyright. It’s such a complicated system.

So, to sum up:

1) Copyright belongs to the photographer. The “release” of said copyright is not a single studio’s or photographer’s choice–it’s simply the law.

2) This copyright allows the photographer to use any and all images taken to be used on their websites and in advertising (but not necessarily sold, ie to stock agencies)

If I’m incorrect on any of these points, let me know! I’m constantly trying to learn and hopefully this helps us all have a clearer idea of the laws.

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

This might come as a bit of a surprise to people, but my niece Adelynn is the absolute hardest portrait subject I’ve ever had to photograph. Because I’m her aunt, she doesn’t tend to take the time we have together seriously (portrait-wise). She DEFINITELY doesn’t want to sit or stand still long enough for the shutter to click and she doesn’t like being told to smile.  Oh, she smiles plenty on a normal day, but the second I hold that camera up to my eye, she stops smiling altogether. These smiles that you see were taken in the last 5 minutes that she was in town–while Bridget and Adam were packing up the car. Luckily, they were A+ smiles…

Usually when I come to visit, it’s for a holiday or a birthday. The weekend typically involves copious amounts of sugar and presents. On this last trip, however, it was for no specific reason. Just a weekend that I decided to come down and see everyone. We celebrated things like a late mother’s day, an early father’s day and my (early) birthday while I was in town, but it was very low-key.  I think that for this reason, Addie and I finally had a chance to bond.

Saturday morning she slipped into my bedroom with a box of birthday candles to wake me up. She crawled into bed with me and we watched Clubhouse Mickey while my sister showered and dressed. I rubbed her back and her head for the 30 minutes that the show was on and as the credits rolled, I stopped momentarily to stretch. In those 20 seconds that I stopped rubbing her back, Adelynn put her hand on the small of her back (like I’ve seen my dad do after lifting something heavy) and gave a loud sigh. “Oh, my back, Aunt Colleen.” She moaned as if she had just spent the whole day at the office and all she could use at the moment was a backrub and a brewskie. It was THAT kind of grunt.

Obviously, I had to continue with her backrub after that. We spent the rest of the weekend playing dress-up, tea parties, doing Addie’s and my make up…all those girlie things that you can do with your auntie.

The following week after I had gotten back to NY, my sister sent me an email. She had bought Adelynn a pack of headbands (which comes with 3 to a pack) and upon giving them to Adelynn, Addie set one aside.

“Who’s that for?” My sister asked.

“Aunt Colleen,” she responded as though it was the most idiotic question she’d heard in her life, “because she has fashbon-cents.”

Damn right, kid! Don’t you forget who the “fashbonable” one of the family is!

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Portrait Session with My Niece {North Carolina Portrait Photographer}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Anne and Sophia are sisters and are both expecting boys within a couple months of each other! They wanted to do their maternity session together. The other requirement was that Anne’s dog, Chunk, be in the photos! Which I’m always happy to be photographing anything to do with babies or dogs…it was a perfect match up.

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Sisters. And Babies. And Dogs. {New York City Maternity Photography}

Toxins. And Other Bull.

Yesterday, I was sitting in a health food cafe waiting for an afternoon meeting to show up. Sitting next to me was a girl and guy. Each were eating carrots, celery…and some other things.

In classic New York form, I was listening to their conversation while pretending to read. I dunno why…it just gets dull sometimes sitting in a cafe, waiting for your appointment to show up!

So anyway, the girl was talking about her vegan lifestyle. About how even the best treated, free-range animals don’t deserve to be eaten. And about how they are full of toxins and when you eat these animals you’re bringing said toxins into your body. She also went on to discuss how when you eat an animal’s energy, you carry a piece of that creature around with you as well.

Essentially, she had a few points that made sense and had me thinking–and some that sounded rather ridiculous. More than anything, I just found her perspective interesting and after I watched FAST FOOD NATION the other day, I had been considering becoming a vegetarian again.

After my appointment, I stepped outside of the restaurant and saw the same girl with her friend sitting on a bench. They were still babbling on about being vegan (I mean, really–is there NOTHING else to talk about?) and in one hand, she had a bottle of Coke (not even diet coke) and in the other hand, she had a cigarette.

Wanna talk about bringing toxins into your body? Sheesh. The lean, organic cut of steak my dad and I had last week is way healthier than either of the items in your hands.

A few Graduates…

It’s that time of year again…when soon-to-be ex-students put on their cap and gown, shake the hands of their school’s president/principal and step into the world of adulthood.

Granted, since Chris was receiving his PhD from Cornell, I think it’s safe to say he’s been in adulthood for quite some time. =0) Doesn’t he look so handsome?? And ladies–hello, he’s going to be a doctor! You can’t beat that…

Unless you’re dating a comic book artist. No, wait–no. Doctor beats comic book artist. ;0)

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

Also having just graduated, is Julia and Tracey–two best friends (also pictured with Julia’s sister). The girls wanted a session in Bryant Park of them together and separately. They had fun playing with hats, different outfits and shoes, and changing in the bushes (even though bathrooms were around the corner ;0)

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...

A few Graduates...