365 Days Photo Project | July, 2013 | Personal

Despite being the the worst 365 photos photographer, I do have a few images of my July subject- Gia. Gia, my little girl, my July baby, my mini crab.

She’s one of the most photogenic, and charismatic individuals I know, so getting pictures of her is rarely difficult, and it makes me fall in love with this art a little more.ImageThanks for looking!!
NDuran

I Heart Faces: Framed

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This week over at I Heart Faces, the theme is ‘Framed’. I didnt think I could participate, but then I remembered I had this little gem, one of my personal favorites from an engagement session, out in Central Park, NYC. I was standing on a bridge, and  caught them in this sweet embrace.

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To participate, or to see other entries, go to I Heart Faces.

Thanks for looking
NDuran

365 Days Photo Project | January, 2013 | Personal

I did it! I completed 31 days of pictures, for my most recent 365 Day Project

Lil' Mikey

So, ok, I admit, I cheated a few times- missed a day here and there, and had to then take two pictures a day to make up for it, but still, I did it!

As I attempted last year (operative word being attempted; I failed miserably with my 365 Day Project last year), this year will consist of monthly themes. For January, it was all ‘Lil’ Mikey’, documenting my little boy’s daily life as best I could, being that his birthday is January 29th.

I now look back at the pictures, and realize I missed a few shots that I had planned to get, but it’s really ok, ’cause I look back, and also notice that my boy really has the best smile, seriously has great hair, loves his little toys so much (this year its Super Mario Brothers), and is addicted to playing with the tablet. Eh, just a tad. And Im reminded of all this, when I look back at this series.

And THAT’S my drive to keep taking these daily pictures. I may not always get ‘the shot’, and not all the pictures are guaranteed to come out good, but to be able to look back at a series of pictures, and remember something, notice something, or want to print a great image is reason enough to take more pictures. If it weren’t for a 365 photo project, I would rarely pick up my DSLR. I’d stick to my phone, which really is heaven sent, isn’t it? But so many pictures go missing in the phone memory. Sometimes we upload, sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we share, sometimes we don’t. And sometimes phones crash and die, and with it go many, many pictures. I know. At least for me, with the DSLR photos, I usually upload, maybe fix up a picture or ten, save it 3x, and then share (on FB, blogs, via emails, albums, prints, etc…).

I get busy, lazy, even uninspired, and then I quit. But each time, with all sincerity, I hope I can continue. This project is just so important to me. It really is.

And now on to February. Stay tuned for those pictures. I hope… 🙂

Film. Back at it. | Personal

06_6A copy

30_30A copy

25_25A copy

21_21A copy

31_31A copy

PicMonkey Collage copy

17_17A copy

08_8A copy

05_5A copy

01_1A copy

These images are from a roll, that sat in my camera for about 6 months. A roll that I put into a brand new camera that I received for Mother’s Day.

Im not sure why it took me so long to unwind the film, and furthermore, Im not sure where that enthusiasm to see what I had photographed, was. But I do think a lot had to do with the fact that I flunked so many times before, with getting great images. And so many rolls of film were wasted.

Yea, I did get some pretty good shots, shots that I actually do love, but still, so many more images were never even recorded. Maybe it was the processing, maybe the lighting, maybe it was a fault with the (old, now broken) camera. Or maybe it was just me- Maybe I wasn’t made for film photography. So once I finished this film, its was no surprise that I wasn’t in any rush to see how bad of a ‘photographer’ I had likely been.

And so, it sat in my camera (my brand new Nikon film camera), for months. But then, I decided I had to see what, if anything, I had captured.

I dropped off my film, and left, but not before leaving a warning,’they probably wont even come out. But if they do, can you include a cd?‘. I then waited a few hours, and prepared for the ‘worst’- another blank film.

And then I got the film back. I received a thick envelope with so many prints, and a cd. I took the prints out, and saw one decent picture, then another, and another. And not only was I happy that the pictures were visible, but also, those prints were proof (for lack of a better word) that I do ‘kinda’ know what Im doing; that i have a good understanding of lighting and exposure; and that my eye continues to develop nicely.

So yea, you can bet that my spirits have been lifted, and my confidence boosted.

There is now another roll in my camera. A few shots have been taken, and Im excited to continue. Perhaps not all the images come out. Most likely a few will be over-exposed, and others out of focus, but whatever the case, Im going to be ok with that. I cant expect to get better if I don’t fail, then learn to understand the mistakes, and ultimately find a way to alter my technique, and try again.

NDuran

I Heart Faces: Best Face of 2012

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This week, I Heart Faces is hosting the Best Face of 2012 photo challenge, and although its been a while, Ive decided to join.
I live with three pretty little faces, and luckily, I did manage to photograph those faces a few times last year, so picking a ‘favorite’ was a little difficult. However, I chose this particular photograph of my little girl, Gia, because it captures her personality so perfectly- silly, charming, sweet faced, and coquettish. Its not only an adorable little face, its also one of my ‘best captures’ of 2012.
Gia Best Face 2012
To share your own image, or just to check out other pictures, check out I Heart Faces.Thanks for looking!
NDuran

March, 2012 | Visual Snippets

Busy.

Continuous play-time messes.

Growing orchids (and keeping them alive!).

Weekly dance classes, and a dance competition.

First outdoor play of spring 2012.

Noticing the spring sunset, everywhere.

An undying obsession with Spiderman.

Dresses and open-toed shoes.

Summer-styled drinks.

Letting my hair down to dance with warm breezes.

Falling in love with film, all over again.

Kindergarten prep classes, over.

Flowers.

First park visit.

Cleaning pink rooms.

Non-boots shoes.

Mid-morning coffee breaks.

This was my March.

(Majority of images taken with my Epic Touch 4G, and shared on instagram- nduran11)

Thanks for looking!
NDuran

Black and White Film

Just want to share some film images, taken last spring 😮

Better late than never though, right?!

Kodak, black and white.

I just bought a new roll of film. Its loaded, and ready to go. I hope to share those images before next year 😀

Thanks for looking!
NDuran 

Baby girl is, um, 4?

My baby girl will be 5 in about 4.5 months. And this wonderful fact, is what makes this post so much more embarrassing.

See, I never shared her 4 year old pictures (as I haven’t shared a lot my pictures recently). Im a busy momma. Sue me.

But, I do have a good excuse. Her 4 year old pictures were taken at Turks and Caicos, last summer. Those pictures were just edited a few days ago (looking down in shame). And now that I have all those pictures completed, I can proudly share her birthday pics.

Yay! No?

And here they are. The pictures of my baby girl, Gia, whom turned 4 on July 19th… Wow. Reading this makes me feel even more crummy.

Anywho, here they are!

They were taken in our hotel room. It was just she and I hanging out, and she looked adorable, she was excited, and was in the mood to take some pictures. How could I resist? of course.

And while at Turks and Caicos, she celebrated her birthday in grand style- with Abby Cadabby herself!

Thanks for looking!

Now stay tuned for images from Turks and Caicos, coming soon 🙂

NDuran 

 

I haven’t left.

Heyyy.

Im here.

Yes, I took a break. Not a permanent one obviously, but I stepped aside for a bit.

I had to.

See, less than a year ago or so, I began feeling a little smothered in this incredible world of photography. And not just with the ‘business’ side of it, but with photography in general.

There were so many things I was looking into, so many things that attracted me, that I wanted to try, to do, to accomplish. There were artists’ work that I loved, and images that inspired me. I bombarded my mind with endless ideas and plans.

But at the same time, there were also those things that were turning me off. The saturation of the art- everyone is doing it, a lot just for a quick buck; a lot silly editing; the lack of originality in so many areas; The sense of competition; the seemingly lack of comradery; and the ‘secrets’ no one wants to let you in on.

I began to feel a little overwhelmed.

Then there were the photo sessions; the editing; the meeting the deadlines; my valuing of my work, or lack thereof;  the trying to ‘photograph my own children more’; the organizing; the time management…

Eventually, it all just started to feel like some redundant race. A race to get things done before a certain time, a race to come up with creative images, before someone else did it, a race to upgrade equipment, or learn something new. A race to hear someone praise my photo. My work.

Ultimately, it began to feel like ‘work’.

There was a point when taking pictures never felt like work for me. Not too long ago, it was a fun, genuine, and intriguing hobby. It was a way to express myself, and to develop creatively.

But that sensation shifted.

And I took my break, rarely picking up any of my cameras. I became solely dependent on the camera on my phone (which is pretty awesome, and convenient). I began to turn down sessions, stopped reading about photography, even stopped saving for future gadgets. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do, nor where I was going with this, but I just needed to step off a bit.

Still, through it all, my love for taking pictures of random smiles, messes, the mundane around my home, or the changing seasons outside, never died. I thank my phone for keeping me in check, and allowing me to photograph whatever caught my eye, my heart, at a particular moment.

Time has passed, and in recent months, I’ve realized that I don’t want to go off too far. I don’t want to stop looking at inspiring images, nor do I want to stop reading wonderful blogs or books. I don’t want to stop taking pictures of beautiful babies and children, for their parents to treasure. And I’ll be damned if I EVER get too lazy to take pictures of my babies.

This period of evaluation has helped me set up a guide for myself. I know what I want, I know what will keep me from getting off course, and eventually get me to where I want to go. I’ll get where I want to go at my own pace, and with my own ‘style’. I’m not out to compete, or to win anything. I’ve never even cared about all that. I just want to take pictures. Good, and emotive pictures.

With all this said, my children are my main priority my time with them invaluable, and that will always come first. Their photos will also always come first. And of course my ‘work’ is important. I know I want to do this for as long as I am permitted. And because I believe in good ‘work’, I need to make some adjustments.

From now on, I will turn down sessions if I need to, and yearly sessions will be limited. For an indefinite period, I will not be photographing events; I want to just do photo/lifestyle sessions right now. There will also be a slight pricing adjustment, reflecting the amount of time and effort that goes into each image.

I like to think that I have a ‘good eye’. I know my images are genuine. And its this that I want to retain- that QUALITY of what I think a ‘good’ image is. I like to believe that a lot goes into creating that, a lot more than some camera and photoshop. It takes a vision, interest, attention, dedication, and time.  I want to offer my potential clients my best work the best memories, and if that means making some changes, that’s fine. Quality over quantity. Always.

Some people may look at this as a bit ridiculous- changing prices? Turning down work? I may lose potential clients, and even past ones. I may lose ‘followers’. But I think if someone likes my work, they’ll ride this out with me.

And I hope some of you will. It’ll be worth it. I can assure you that.

I leave you with this. A picture of my muses. My guides. My priority.

Good day!
NDuran

He’s turning 3!! | Bergen County, NJ Children’s Photographer

Baby boy will be 3 on January 29th. My delicate, tiny-faced newborn, my preemie, will be 3.

To commemorate this milestone, here’s a peek into his world as it is now, featuring things he likes, loves, and has dealt with for the last few months.

My Mikey.


My shy, coquettish, good looking, and smart boy. My Mikey. Who also happens to need a trim.

Thank you for looking!

NDuran