Celebrations: Theme Thursday

I know, I know, I KNOW it’s not Easter yet and I’m probably committing a mortal sin by dressing my kids in their fancy clothes, but just let’s let it go, ok?  It’s been a rough week.

I’ll be honest  (there’s a lot of that going on around this ol’ blog today): I’m off-topic this week.  We’ve been trying to keep a solemn week and since I’m not, ahem, blessed with any birthdays this week and didn’t want to use old photos, I just decided to go for the family photo after reading Cari’s post: “How to take a not-completely-hopeless family photo without murdering anyone.” That may not have been the real title, but I think it fits.

Baths? Check.

Easter outfits? Check.

Interesting background? Erm, uh, sorta check.

Harsh mid-day light? Unfortunately, big fat check.

Props? Check.

Cute kids? Quadruple check.

(I took all the photos in RAW format because I knew I was going to have to play with the levels in Photoshop and RAW’s the easiest way for me to do it as a novice.)

F/4, 1/1600, ISO 200 (finally remembered to lower ISO!)
(Played with the “shadows” slider to smooth out some dark spots.)

F/4, 1/1250, ISO 200
Chubby cheeks and baby fingers in this one just kill me.

F/4, 1/400, ISO 200
(Played with the “vibrance” slider on this one for fun and I like it!)

F/4, 1/400, ISO 200
(Played with the “contrast” slider on this one.  I like it, too.)

One simple lesson I learned about aperture: I love love love me some high (low?) aperture settings, but it doesn’t work when you want to focus on multiple people in a photo.  Awhile back I read this simple guideline: keep your aperture setting at or below (above?) the number of people in your frame.  So for four kids, I set mine at f/4.  If you have 2 people in your shot, set it no lower than 2, etc.

One book recommendation for all you mom-ographers (not mammographers-gross) out there: Mamarazzi by Stacy Wasmuth. I got this book before I even had my nice camera and it’s a great reference.

Finally, have a blessed Triduum.  I promise we won’t have any more fun until Sunday.

Now head on over to Cari’s Theme Thursday to see more celebrations.


  1. Beautiful, beautiful kids!!! How could you lose? Last photo is my fave. The colors and their expressions are perfect. Love your little one looking into the distance, too, he’s like, I’m done, I’m cute, but I’m done.

    Thanks for the book recommendation! Mom-ographers!

    • Thanks, Rebekah! Zeke and Gabe cracked me up during this whole shoot. I’m considering cropping their faces and doing a hilarious montage. Let’s just saw Gabe will look like the ham he is, but Zeke will look, um, not very smart.

  2. Oh, so cute! I think the bright light works well with the bright colors. You do a great job coordinating the outfits without making them too matchy. Fantastic!

    • Thanks, Elizabeth! You know, we picked out all the outfits at the same time, but other than coordinating the boys with each other (and the store had a VERY small selection so I didn’t have much choice) the fact that they coordinated at all is just luck. But thanks!

  3. Oh, my gosh, how I love these! The vivid color, the expressions, the way your youngest is more interested on those around him. So sweet! Major kudos for getting all your kids to look cute at once. I’ll have to give it a try this weekend with my kids. (Preferably, Good Friday when I’ll be more inclined to hold my tongue and not complain when everyone runs amok. ;-))

    • Ha! It’s Good Friday now and all day I’ve been working on my patience. Thank the Lord for graces! And thank goodness I didn’t take these photos today or all those graces wouldn’t have been enough.

  4. mom-ographers/mammographers! Died. Haha. Love the kiddo’s. Love the pics. Love the tutorial! 🙂

  5. Hop on a plane immediately and come take my family picture for Sunday. Do it. Do it now.

    Also, that second to last one is my favorite. Oh my gosh, it kills me.

    • Donaldson, don’t you tease me with a solo trip alone. I don’t even care about the 17 hour flight. If I could do it, I would. Just for the 34 hours of kid-free time.

  6. Awesome shots! So happy and colorful! My girls chose the same dress as your oldest, in different colors 🙂

  7. Love the last photo also..the little girl with her mouth open READY TO EAT!

    • Christine, I read all the comments to my daughters and my younger one loved yours the best. She asked me to read it over and over again. And she says, yes, she is ready to eat all the candy!

  8. Cuteness overload. I can’t decide between the second and third picture for my favorite. What a genius pose idea! Best Easter pictures. I think you can be forgiven for taking them a bit early. 😉

  9. I Love Love Love that second one with their hands on their faces. Super cute!!! They look like they had a lot of fun posing for all of these.

    • You know what, Christy, I was totally expecting a fight, but they were completely into it! Picking out locations and poses, etc. I think the new clothes and baskets made it super special.

  10. Aw, I’d celebrate both those adorable kids AND those great photographs!

  11. These are so great! I love the vibrant colors and the awesome smiles 🙂

  12. The second last one is my fave, too. Love his confused expression!

  13. The kids are darling. Also happy to hear what sliders you are using. That is great fun for me but I have to watch more carefully with adults not to get them too intense in color. Vibrance is better for skin color enhancement than Saturation.
    I like to use F2 for single person photos and when I have a group as if you had the four of your kids stand one in front of the next then an F8 will get you better focus on all 4 faces. Better depth of focus or depth of field.

  14. love love love these kids. they are so cute and you are an awesome photographer! Happy Easter!

  15. Your kids are lovely! Have a wonderful Triduum and Easter!

  16. Love the pics, Micaela! Their Easter outfits are the cutest. Happy Easter to you all!