My Heart is in Savannah, Georgia!

We recently celebrated our daughter's birthday, which made me reminisce about her last birthday and where we were.  While this year we were pretty much stuck inside due to a freak ice storm, last year we were lounging around the warm and wonderful Savannah, Georgia. With the magnitude of grossness happening outdoors I was reminiscing hard.  If you’ve never been to Savannah you should definitely put it on your bucket list. Even if you haven’t read the book Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, by John Berendt, you should go. I would recommend reading it though; it's fantastic!  Don’t cheat and watch the movie, it doesn't do the book any justice. the book is based on a scandalously true story and many of the places mentioned in said novel can be toured and explored within the city. The book kind of acts like a walking tour, only with murder and voodoo (the best kind of tour guide). 

The first time we went to Savannah, GA was in 2008. I incorrectly assumed we could see enough of the city in a couple of days (I was wrong). I immediately fell in love with the whimsical trees and atmosphere. We stayed at The Marshall House. Built in 1851 it served as a hospital for soldiers, a gorgeous historic four-story building with a shared balcony on the second floor only. One of the coolest features of the balcony is that you can only access it by climbing through the massive window in your room. The concierge was incredibly personable and polite and made sure we stayed on the second floor. Room 215 became one of the nicest and most unique places we’ve stayed in with a claw-foot bath and incredibly high ceilings. The Marshall house features nightly wine and cheese socials with backgammon tables (my favourite) and the best breakfast you can imagine. The whole experience is just luxurious and our small taste of the city and culture left me wanting more.

We didn’t get a chance visit again until 2015, this time with our 2 children in tow. We decided to spend a couple of nights in Savannah on our way to Athens, Georgia for a family wedding. Our daughter was about to turn 3 at that time and being that we named her Savannah we thought it would be really special for her to turn 3 in Savannah. Once again we stayed at The Marshall House, and they surprised our daughter with a staff signed card wishing her a happy birthday, which I am still impressed with to this day. In the short time we were there we did manage to visit the Savannah Children’s Museum and the Georgia State Railroad Museum.  We made some really meaningful memories there, so while looking longingly out the back window as we drove away, I promised myself we would spend an entire week the next time we visited.

That’s exactly what we did in April of last year! We rented an apartment right in the city on Liberty Street. I fell in love with the historic 2 bedroom apartment, located in the Historic District right on the border between tourism and local living. I could have spent the week just walking the streets around our apartment admiring the stunning homes and gardens.  We enjoyed tourist activities such as the Trolley Tours, exploring Davenport Museum, eating ice cream at Leopold’s (this truly is the BEST ice cream I have ever tasted), eating at the Pirates House (which authentically was an Inn where pirates rendezvoused dating back to 1753) and walked around the waterfront on River Street. Then we started talking to locals and finding all the little gems the city has to offer. An amazing little hole in the wall offering amazing sandwiches and craft beer, spending an afternoon at Tybee Island lounging around the sandy vast beach, and walking the lovely Forsyth Park. 

We also heard all about Bonaventure Cemetery, which is located just outside of the city and was the location where the Bird Girl statue featured on the infamous cover of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil was photographed. The Bird Girl was relocated as she became so popular that there was concern with her crumbling due to being touched by admirers. She was relocated to Telfair Museums' Jepson Center for the Arts, where she can be both viewed and cared for. As photographers we felt it was a necessity to visit Bonaventure Cemetery, so we loaded up our kids and spent the afternoon in the most beautiful cemetery I have ever been in!

There is a piece of my heart in Savannah, Georgia and I cannot wait to return and fall in love all over again. Is there a place that makes you feel that way? I would love if you would be willing to share your favourite place and why!

Thanks you for walking down memory lane with me!

Love LOCPS xoxo

Here’s a list of websites to some of the places I’ve mentioned in case you want to find out more-

The Marshall House- https://www.marshallhouse.com

Georgia State Railroad Museum- http://www.chsgeorgia.org/GSRM

Savannah Children’s Museum- http://www.chsgeorgia.org/SCM

The Pirates House- http://www.thepirateshouse.com

Bonaventure Cemetery- http://www.bonaventurehistorical.org

Forsyth Park- http://www.savannahga.gov/1813/Bicycles-in-Forsyth-Park

I need your help selecting my new headshot!

Over the weekend we were out photographing family portraits when I decided it was time to update my business headshot. I wanted something different from the in-studio look I've been rocking for the last couple of times I had my business portrait taken.  I wanted something a little more relaxed, and I had an artsy look-away-from-the-camera image in my head.  Of course I was more than pleased with the results and I managed to narrow it down... kinda. This is where I need your help! Which photograph should I use? Looking, not looking, smile, no smile? I have been staring at them so long trying to decide and figured who better to ask than all my friends out there who will be looking at this mug of mine every time I post something unbelievably intelligent and witty. This will be used in the typical social media sites, including LinkedIn.

Let me have it! Your thoughts, favourites and help is appreciated! The images are numbered (just hover over the photo) and don't forget to click them to make them bigger.

Love, LOCPS xoxox

Looking for updated, artsy headshots? Let us help you - Left of Centre Photography Services www.locps.com info@locps.com 905-877-3900

New Floors at Left of Centre Photography Services

Summer is my second favourite time of year; fall being my first. In previous years our summers would be filled with weddings every weekend, but now that we have decided to change things up and not photograph weddings any longer we have a little more time on our hands for other photography jobs, projects and adventures.  We are taking full advantage of summer this year with day trips, explorations and we are currently in the process of redoing our front entranceway, stayed tuned for more postings on this. Generally we do one renovation per year, ranging from a fresh coat of paint to a complete kitchen overhaul. Last summer we took a good look (we actually tried not to look too closely) at our floors.  Our home studio is pushing 100 years old and the original wooden floors had taken quite the beating over 8 years. With sessions involving moving background and lighting around the floor the wood had definitely seen better days as you can see below -

The question was, how do we fix this? We, like many, love a good DIY, but you have to be really careful with wood floors. For instance, a drum sander with just a little too much pressure can go right through the floor and you could wake up nicely chilled in your basement due to sanding right through the wood. If you think logical facts like this would stop us, you are wrong. We decided to give it a go and commit to this incredibly risky DIY. Now, we aren't complete fools (that's what we tell ourselves anyway), so we decided to use an orbital sander opposed to a drum sander.  Though it would take longer and go through more sand paper it would also make sure our unfinished basement would not become open to our studio space. You can thank us for not risking your lives with the possibility of falling through the floor and into our basement when you're next visiting our studio! Of course the process took waaayyy longer than anticipated, plus we had to hideaway for a few days after the final coat of sealant was on to guarantee that it had actually completely dried and we wouldn't end up destroying all our (Jeff's) hard work.  In the original "plan" (my plans are always in quotations because they aren't really plans, they are "ideas"..."thoughts"... "disasters") we were going to skip the kitchen.  Too much work and we, "technically", were still completing that reno.  Being a typical "Amy plan", the kitchen was not only involved with our floor renovation it was also stained a completely different colour. Go big or go home, right? I have never stained a floor before, but I am very good at picking out a colour of floor stain so naturally this makes me a professional.  We decided that splitting the kitchen floor between us, me on one side and Jeff on the other, would make it faster and easier... and faster. This was a mistake because, although I am not at all competitive, I decided that I was going to do my half of the kitchen floor the fastest, and I did! I also was completely covered in stain, as were some of the walls and kitchen cabinets.  All wipeable, well, the cabinets wiped off... looks like I will be painting the trim white again, but I won and that's really the moral of the story!

Overall I am very pleased with the outcome and a year later the floor is holding up well regardless of the numerous studio setups and cake smashes that occur.

I hope this post was worth a 4 week wait. I won't make you wait a year until you see our front entryway, although at this rate it may take Jeff a year to complete it.  Which would be a shame, because I have a lot more "plans"!

See you next week (I promise!).

Love, LOCPS xoxox

Looking for awesome photos? Of course you are! Let us help you with that- Left of Centre Photography Services www.locps.com info@locps.com 905-877-3900

 

Big Changes at Left of Centre Photography Services!

It’s been a long time since our last post - a really, really long time - and although we should have posted more, we decided to take a break for a bit, think hard about what we were writing and what we wanted to say, what we were trying to get across and how to present that to you - our readers. Through this process, our eyes were opened to how our business has evolved over time - how it was in the past, where it is now, and where it is heading. Together with my husband Jeff, we have built and run Left of Centre Photography Services (LOCPS) for over 13 years - and in that time we've witnessed so many changes in the photography industry! When Jeff and I took the plunge, left the Toronto studio where we were both employed and start our own business in Halton Hills, one of our biggest considerations was whether to continue with film cameras, or switch over to digital...seriously hard to believe today! It kept Jeff up at night. We decided to make the switch, and though the market and technology was still new we were convinced it was here to stay and spent $7,000 on our first digital camera - which captured images at less than 6 mega pixels, and now acts beautifully as a paper weight. As we all know, digital not only stayed but greatly improved. We have witnessed cameras changing with the ability to capture video, pixel count rising, pricing dropping, and the invention of smart phone cameras.  Things have really come a long way in the past 13 years, and so have we!

Looking back from where we have come from I cannot help but feel incredibly proud.  After opening the door of our first office in September 2004, the Halton Hills community has accepted us with open arms and we haven't looked back. Over the years, we have built our client list and become friends with many of them. Georgetown isn't just where we work, we have truly set our roots here and we proudly call it home.  In 2009 our family grew when we welcomed our first child, then again in 2012 with our second. Having children connected us with our community in a way I had never even considered. They now attend school and participate in activities, getting us involved even more. I can't think of a better place to raise them.

Take a look at these bright-eyed and bushy-tailed youngins' when we first opened our studio on Mill Street in Downtown Georgetown.

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After nearly a year there we expanded and moved shop to 124 Main Street where we stayed for three years.

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We made our final move in 2008 to our current location - just down the street where we have happily continued to serve the community for the last 9 years. Here's what our main floor looks like when the studio is set up and ready to capture some awesome photos!

Now that the past has been covered... on to the future! First, we have added two new sections to our main website.  There is now a category of our "Fine Art", a place where we post photographs of anything and everything that moves us, check that out here.  The other category you will find is "Our Halton Hills".  Since joining the Heritage Halton Hills Committee last year my interest in historic buildings has increased, especially those around us, take a look of those photographs here.  We love Halton Hills and truly appreciate everything it has to offer and have decided to pay homage to it by having a section of our website which shows just how much our town has become a big part of who we are.  We hope that you, whether from the area or not, fall in love with our town as much as we have.

Second, while you are exploring our site you may notice something is missing.  Through much discussion, Jeff and I have decided to stop offering Wedding photography services - unless someone begs, pleads and cries, of course...I can't handle tears.  We discovered our interests have changed. We have been photographing weddings for more years than we would like to admit; especially Jeff...he's ancient! We have been focusing our creativity in different, specific areas - corporate imaging and branding, maternity and newborns, family portraits, and more.  Though we are sad that we will no longer be offering this specific service, we are happy to move forward and expand other aspects of our business, continuing our journey. We LOVE our job and the people we are lucky to meet while doing it.

So now that we've made some heavy decisions and decided where to take Left of Centre Photography Services creatively,  we will be back to posting regularly! We look forward to bringing you weekly posts every Wednesday featuring our work, photography tips and tricks, ideas and failures, and most importantly...our very best!

Thank you to everyone who has stood by us, been loyal, and read this post - we even appreciate those of you who simply skimmed it! We look forward to many more years with you, because, like our town, we love you!

We would love to hear from all of you, so please comment or send us an email at info@locps.com and let us know what you want to read about!

xoxo LOCPS (Amy and Jeff)!

Looking for awesome photos? Of course you are!  Let us help you with that- Left of Centre Photography Services www.locps.com info@locps.com 905-877-3900

Father`s Day is this Sunday!!

I was going through my week this morning trying to be proactive (Ha!) when I noticed that this Sunday is Father`s Day... WHAT!?! So, what to do... no seriously...  what do I do? I desperately hit Michaels for excellent crafty ideas (which they have plenty of) only to be disappointed.  Jeff (my husband) wouldn't really want any of it.  Sure, it's adorable, but what on earth is he going to do with a framed piece of chalkboard? Now, I am a woman of a "certain age" and to give this gift to my own Dad seems a little too childish, don't get me wrong, I'm still totally cute and his only girl but my drawings are not going to cut it!

Then it hit me... I'm a Professional Photographer.... duh! For my own Dad I will be doing a personalized desk calendar (which he LOVES ) and for Jeff I will put together an incredibly thoughtful collage for him to go with the awesome art my kids will create for him!

Stuck on a Father's Day gift idea?  Here at Left of Centre Photography we do Custom Gift Certificates!

Contact us for more information at -  info@locps.com   905-877-3900  www.locps.com

Happy Father's Day to all the Dad's out there! Below are some cute photographs of my husband and son!

Love

LOCPS xoxox