Monday, June 27, 2011

Results are in and First Friday Art Walk

After not waiting so patiently the result's for The World Famous Topeka Zoo's finally came in.  We are very excited to announce we were award 2 3 first place awards and a second place award.  We know for sure that this photo took first.

The next two we know that one took first and the other took second we just aren't sure which one is which.

We don't think it's so bad that 3 of the 4 photos we entered placed.  Sadly, my personal favorite did not place.  It's ok, I knew it was a long shot for this kind of contest but I liked it.  This one also took first!  

All four photographs will be on display at the zoo July 1 9 AM-2 PM, July 2 9 AM - 5 PM, and July 3 9 AM-5 PM and they will be on display at Core First Bank in downtown Topeka July 1 as part of First Friday 5 PM-8 PM

Update:  The list that we were sent left off the lion photo.  It was our assumption that it had not placed.  The list released to the public on Monday or Tuesday had the lion photo listed as a first place winner.  We are over the moon with our results.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Topeka Zoo Contest Enteries

Our local zoo, The World Famous Topeka Zoo, is having a photography contest.  The deadline was today and I can say that the following four photographs are at the zoo awaiting their judging.  

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Attention Class of 2012

We are proud to present our Senior Rep for the class of 2012, Derek!

Be sure to schedule your photo shoot soon so you too can have amazing photos just like these.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Big Reveal

Well it's time to reveal what we showed at Tinkham Veale Upstairs Downtown Gallery.

We'd like to thank everyone who came out Friday to support all the artist in Topeka.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

I Need Your Help

I stress out horribly over picking out a photograph for a contest or to hang in a gallery.  The other night I took to Twitter for help in picking out our two prints for the art walk.  They did such a great job, or at least I think they did, that I thought I'd come to you for help this time.  I have a little more time, not such a last minute thing.  The zoo is holding a photography contest and the photos are due next week.  I think I've narrowed them down to the following, but I can only enter two.  Black and White is a separate category so that's why there is a choice in color and in black and white.  There may be another post when the other half of Shields Photography narrows his down.  You can comment, tweet, or let me know on Facebook which two are your favorites.















Tuesday, May 31, 2011

We are showing at....

Tinkham Veale! We will have two pieces, but you'll have to come out to see what they are or wait until after the show, to see what they are. The opening of the show will be Friday June 3, 2011. This is conjunction with First Friday Artwalk. We will be in the area, the gallery is small so we may not be in the gallery proper the whole time, 6:30 PM - 7:30 PM to meet and greet folks. We hope to see you a lot of you walking around Topeka during this fun time.

Tinkham Veale
902 1/2 South Kansas Ave.
Topeka, KS

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Why We Charge What We Do

I know it's been awhile since I've written anything here. I've been focusing my attention to the Facebook Page. I need to get better at balancing the three factions of our social media. Now on to the real reason I'm writing. One of the people I follow on Twitter and Facebook posted a great article about photography pricing. I wanted to share a snippet from the article with you.

Why Does Custom Photography Cost More?
The digital revolution has brought amazing flexibility and ability to control various factors during the image taking and making process. Photographers, the hobbyist, the professional, the amateur all benefit from this ability to manipulate pixels. However, with flexibility comes a price. Digital camera equipment is still considerably more expensive when you factor in its’ lifespan, the need for additional resources for processing those images, the time it takes to get a usable image and the effort that goes into creating a work of photographic art. We all know that you can go to the local Walgreen’s and pay a $1.99 for a print – as a client you may wonder why you may pay upwards of $50, $70, $90 for a custom photography print. Photographers hear this statement every once in awhile:

“How in the world can you charge $60 for an 8×10 if it costs me less than $2 to print at x store?”

The truth of the matter is the answer to this question is multifaceted. Much of the cost of a photographic print produced by a professional photographer has a lot to do with the time, equipment costs, artistic vision and reputation of the photographer not to mention expertise and the usual costs of running a legitimate business. The cost of TIME Approaching it from a time standpoint, let’s imagine that you have hired a photographer who has work that you love. This photographer is traveling an hour to your destination to photograph your session. Here is an example of a time break down:
booking time: 30 minutes to one hour (client contact time + paperwork)
pre-session prep time (30 mins – 1 hour, includes equipment and back up equipment checks + vehicle checks)
one hour travel time TO session
15-30 minutes prep time at client’s home
90 minutes-2 hours with client photographing subject
one hour travel time FROM session
30-45 minutes uploading time from digital cards from camera to computer
30-45 minutes time spent backing up the original images
2-5 hours editing time to present you with a diverse gallery of edited images
1 hour prep time getting ready for ordering
2-3 hours time with client for ordering images
1 hour sorting through and checking order
30 minutes-1 hour prep time for delivery
30 minutes-1 hour getting order shipped
any additional phone time or time needed for add on ordering, shipment issues, quality issues
In this example, the time spent per client can range from just under 13 hours to 19 hours – dependent on the photographer’s level of service. This is time dedicated only to ONE session. When the photographer charges $150-$300 for the photo shoot (aka SESSION FEE) you are not just paying for the two hours of session time, you are paying the photographer for 12-19 hours complete time for your session.

I'm so happy that Mark shared this with me so I could in turn share it with all of you. It's hard to explain to someone why our prices are what they are. I think this is just perfect. If you'd like to read the whole article click here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

We're Stylin'

We are super honored to have been given this award.  It's our first!!  The amazing ladies over at Crafty Life and Style bestowed it upon us.  Now to share seven fun things and pass it on to 15 amazing blogs.  (Note only one half of Shields Photography is up for sharing things.)

1. Mel drinks almost a gallon of faux sweet tea a day.  It's sweetened with sweet and low.
2. At work, everyday, at 1:00 she buys a Dr. Pepper and drinks it.
3. Mel doesn't care what others think, she loves her crocs.  She also has an extensive collection of what the other half calls ugly shoes. (They aren't ugly they are high fashion shoes that help a short girl out.)
4. Mel has been to known to cry over Folgers Commercials, Hallmark Commercials, and the finale of Big Love.
5. Mel's first ever published picture was of feet.  The other half's first ever published picture was

6. Mel loves That 70's show.
7. Last but not least Mel loves to bake!

Ok that was harder then I thought it would be.  Now for the easy part, 15 favorite blogs!.
(In no order!)

1. Dollar Store Crafts
2. The Idea Room
3. Blue Cricket Design
4. Infarrantly Creative
5. Be Different Act Normal
6. Crap I've Made
7. Homemade by Jill
8. Ruffles and Stuff
9. Someday Crafts
10. Tatertots and Jello
11. Eighteen25
12. Sew Dang Cute Crafts
13. I <3 Naptime
14. Sew Much Ado
15. Iron Craft

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Nik Software Silver Efex Pro 2 Review

I told you last night that I would show you today how I got the photo for the pillow.  Well here we go.

I started with this picture.

I ended up with this picture.

So how did I do it?  With NikSoftware Silver Efex Pro2 plug-in for Photoshop CS4.  I first processed my RAW file.  For more on how I do that you can click here.  I opened the jpg up in Photoshop.

Then I clicked on the Silver Efex plug-in.  It's next to my history window.

This is what the Silver Efex work window looks like.  It is very user friendly and I have to admit that I didn't use the program to it's full existent for this project.

On the left hand side is numerous presets.  I scrolled down and picked the over exposed one for this.

This is the right hand panel.  It's where you can fine tune how your picture looks.  I only adjusted the toning for this picture.

There are 23 tones to choose from.  I picked number 23 that's hiding behind my tool bar.  Then I clicked OK and was taken back to Photoshop.

Then I cropped it to an 8x10.  I did this because I only wanted a small photo to work up into a pillow.

For more information about all this plug-in can do please visit

My thoughts on the software:
I love it!  It is a little over whelming at first.  Between all the presets and all the ways you can tweak each preset you can start to get lost in it.  The more I use it though the less overwhelming it is.  I'm a big fan of black and white photography and this brings a more realistic black and white feel to your digital photos.

*Please note all opinions in this post are mine and mine along.  I was in no way compensated for it.  I have no affiliation with NikSoftware.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Photo Craft Project

If you came over hoping to find the new Iron Craft Challenge, it's moved here.  I hope when I get this figured out for real that I can post a tutorial for you all to make one yourself.  But right now I just want some feedback.  What do you guys think of this?

I made it with one of my own photographs.  I tinted the picture yellow because that's the color of fabric I had on hand.  The white lines are because I didn't get the fabric right.

I'll tell you how I did the photo tomorrow!  I'm going to review a new plug-in for Photoshop.  It is not washable.

While I kind of like it, it's not the same.  Do you like it?  Should I think about including it in my product line?  Is it too crafty for my product line?

*Note all photos on this blog post were taken with my iPhone.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

We Are On The Web

I know we are really already on the web because we have our little blog here.  But we have our own website now.   From there you can purchase any of our art photographs directly from us.  We only accept payment via Pay Pal.  You can also learn all about our portrait services.  If you are in our area we'd love to hear from!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Top 20 Photos

I thought I'd share our top 20 photos from our flickr streams.  The top ten from this stream and the top ten from this stream  You are more than welcome to go check out our streams at anytime.  There is always new photographs being added that doesn't always make it over here.

Topeka Depot IMG_9847 IMG_9854 20110118-IMG_3655 IMG_9837 IMG_9809 IMG_9824 Photo WalkingIMG_9848IMG_9843 IMG_0555 IMG_0511 IMG_3003 IMG_3014 IMG_3015 IMG_3006 IMG_3013 IMG_3011 IMG_1280-2 IMG_6474-Mel measures up -010211
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