Boston Baby Photos Blog » photos by Jessica McDaniel

Reading and playing with a wonderful boy

I loved seeing this sweet boy again this year back on an unseasonably warm day in October. He spent some time at the beginning of the photoshoot reading a fabulous bug book aloud to his mom – I’ll admit I learned quite a lot ;)

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Wonderful to see you guys, as always!

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Audrey Paek - December 8, 2015 - 5:18 pm

Touching photos of a beautiful family! :)

Toni - December 8, 2015 - 5:19 pm

Love these photos. They definitely show this family’s personality.

Ann Goodwin - December 8, 2015 - 5:24 pm

Great pictures! Love the one standing on one foot.

Kate H - December 8, 2015 - 5:36 pm

Love these pictures!!

Zoe - December 8, 2015 - 5:36 pm

I love the one of Ren!

Tim Fitzgibbons - December 8, 2015 - 6:12 pm

Beautiful pics!

Curt - December 8, 2015 - 6:56 pm

Awesome shots – you guys look great!

Natalie - December 8, 2015 - 7:47 pm

Beautiful photos!! And beautiful subjects!

Jamie - December 8, 2015 - 7:55 pm

Wonderful pics that capture the joys of parenting.

Janet - December 8, 2015 - 8:11 pm

Naomi, I have known this wonderful boy since before he was born. (More intermittently since I moved away.) But I have loved to see him grow up. These photos are exceptional. They capture a rapport between you two that is undescribable…magical.

Mia Shopis - December 8, 2015 - 8:21 pm

Fantastic photos! Wish we were in JP to see you more.

Diane - December 8, 2015 - 9:18 pm

Though I haven’t seen Naomi in over two decades, her warmth and intelligence is ever present. And I sure do miss our hanging out days. No one deserves this more

Matt - December 8, 2015 - 9:31 pm

I’ve enjoyed seeing pictures of this cute kid grow, but these fantastic photos truly capture the family love that has made him so clearly happy.

Valerie Worthington - December 8, 2015 - 10:19 pm

What a precious pumpkin and a lovely mommy! I’m fortunate to count both of them among my friends, and creating more pictures of them will just make the world a more beautiful place.

Lynn Ryan - December 9, 2015 - 12:26 am

Love and miss you! Ren is so grown up! Beautiful photos.

Anne-Marie Aigner - December 9, 2015 - 7:38 am

Fabulous photos.

nicole holt - December 10, 2015 - 5:51 am

What a sweet and loving series of photos!

Fall Public Garden Minishoot #19

You know, I take pictures of a lot of teenagers because I’ve been doing what I do for twelve years now, which means tons of the original “babies” of Boston Baby Photos are heading into their teens now. I love seeing all those kids every year as they grow. But you know what else is really fun? Meeting new families who have teenagers! I love the fun of meeting new people, and we can relax and have fun right away with older kids.

That was the case with these guys – their elder daughter is thirteen and their younger is ten, and the most important thing for these guys was making sure we got great photos with their parents.

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That we can do! But first we needed to grab a photo of these cute parents.

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Thanks so much for coming to meet me for a minishoot in the Public Garden. I loved getting to know you guys.

Chris Kempner - November 27, 2015 - 8:53 am

What beautiful pictures of the Weiss family! They are as beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside. Live every smile and every kiss!!

Laura - November 27, 2015 - 8:54 am

Such great photos!

Paul Gleason - November 27, 2015 - 9:00 am

Great photos of a great family!
When did the girls get so big?
Paul

Deb Reyore - November 27, 2015 - 9:09 am

Awesome photo’s of an awesome family!

Zantalalia deter - November 27, 2015 - 9:23 am

What amazingly beautiful photos!. Captures how lovely my cousin really is. What beautiful family memories you have captured for them .

Roxann Kidd - November 27, 2015 - 9:24 am

Beautiful pictures of a beautiful family!

Michele Corkery - November 27, 2015 - 9:44 am

Gorgeous family. Placeful, lovely photographs. Well done all!

Kandi Bux - November 27, 2015 - 9:46 am

The pictures are so good!! You all look great!!

Laurie DeMarco - November 27, 2015 - 9:51 am

Beautiful photos! Looks like you had so much fun!

Ginger DeShaney - November 27, 2015 - 10:03 am

Gorgeous photos!! Just stunning!

Anne Snyder - November 27, 2015 - 10:06 am

Beautiful family!!!

Cindy O'Donnell - November 27, 2015 - 10:18 am

Such beautiful photos!!! You can see the Love! :-)

Kathryn Guthrie - November 27, 2015 - 10:21 am

Love all the shoot BBP really captured the loving spirit of this special family! My favorite is the one with all three girls.

Anna lyn - November 27, 2015 - 10:38 am

Love this sweet family! What great pics!

Marvin Pratt - November 27, 2015 - 10:40 am

Great shots you guys. Looks like you had a lot of fun doing the photo shoot too.

Allen - November 27, 2015 - 11:04 am

Great family shots!!!!

Dorrie Fleischer - November 27, 2015 - 11:28 am

Beautiful pictures of a very special family!

Suzanne - November 27, 2015 - 11:40 am

What a fun shoot! Great angles and a whole lot of different expressions captured too. Love the B&W.

Nola Odens - November 27, 2015 - 1:50 pm

You captured their sweet silliness! A terrific shoot of four seriously special people. Love you, Weiss family!

Susan Hanscom - November 27, 2015 - 6:00 pm

I LOVE these pictures – all of them!

Dawn reed - November 27, 2015 - 7:31 pm

Love these!!!! So beautiful!!! The smiles are contagious.

Barbara Renze - November 27, 2015 - 11:33 pm

Lovely photos of a truly beautiful family!

Candy Wright - November 28, 2015 - 4:42 pm

Mom and the girls are cute but not so sure about the dad! Lol! Beautiful pictures of a beautiful family.

Julie Ferguson - November 30, 2015 - 2:22 pm

Beautiful morning photos and beautiful family. Love these!

Julie ferguson - November 30, 2015 - 2:24 pm

^^^ don’t know why spell check popped “morning” in there ;-), but beautiful photos morning, noon or night !!!! ;-)

Mary Delgado - November 30, 2015 - 6:10 pm

The photos came out beautiful. May God continue to bless this amazing family

Why always a sleeping baby?

Why do so many baby photographers like to photograph a sleeping baby? They’re sweet, and of COURSE I will happily take photos of your sleeping baby for you. I loved watching my own babies sleep – there’s nothing like listening to them breathe, watching how relaxed they are — I get it. (Posing a sleeping baby – hmmm, that’s probably another blog post for another time. Nothing against it, just not really my thing. Cute, very Anne Geddes, I get it… but I feel like it’s a different art form, honestly. I think of those photos as more of a still life than a way of documenting a new person who just arrived into the world… but I digress…)

So we can do sleeping shots if you’re into it, but I do think once you have those handful of photos of them sleeping, it’s great to move on and show the world who this little person is becoming!

There’s just so much more to document when babies are awake. I mean, just LOOK at this sweet girl. She was snoozing when I arrived, but she eventually woke up and had the best time for her photos.

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Wait, are you sure you’re only 4 weeks old? What’s with all the gorgeous smiles?9116

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So wonderful to meet you guys! Welcome to the world, little T. Can’t wait to see you for more photos in a few months!

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How many babies are in there?

How many babies, Jo? How many?

I love her left hand here – seems like she’s expressing some additional thoughts about the upcoming changes in her life (even if only subconsciously?). It’s gonna be pretty fabulous, kiddo.

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Big sister took a minute to tell the babies a little secret here:

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And look out, kid, or someone might tickle you…

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And we know you know how to tickle right back:

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Love this crew of five more than I can explain.

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Tossing the leaves in the yard

I’ve been taking pictures of big brother D and his sister G since they were each teenie tiny newborns, and this year they invited their big cousin to come do photos in their gorgeous yard with them – what a fun idea!

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Everybody loves tossing leaves.

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It was great having big kid energy there too…

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They had so much fun playing!

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High-five :)

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Loved seeing you guys as always! Thanks so much for having me.

Public Garden Fall Minishoot #5

These fall minishoots are flying by! I’ve shot 13 families so far in the Public Garden, and there’s about that many more left to shoot – so much family fun to document :)

Wonderful to see these guys again, especially because I hadn’t yet meet their newest addition. Fabulous, fun sisters!

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Kayla Skillin - October 20, 2015 - 1:56 pm

great photos!

Carolynn mackay - October 20, 2015 - 2:38 pm

Beautiful!

Robyn Mabel - October 20, 2015 - 5:43 pm

Your pictures are great, Jessica. I love the way everyone always looks so natural and not like they are posing.

Jennifer Reardon - October 20, 2015 - 9:08 pm

Gorgeous, I love your style! You captured so many fun moments.

Tricia McKenna - October 21, 2015 - 4:42 pm

so many fantastic shots!

Two under two, and everything’s fine

Big brother M wasn’t yet two, and his new baby brother J was five weeks old when we did these photos about two weeks ago, so they’re proud members of the two under two club! And hate to break it to you, but they sure do seem to have things under control. Either that, or they put on a pretty good show for photos. ;) I think this first one is my favorite, though. I just love mom and dad’s expressions as they look at each other.

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Wonderful to see you guys as always!

Loving the sprinkler in September

We did these photos in the middle of September, (it was big brother C’s 5 year old birthday that very day), and what a September we had! Remember it? It was only a little bit ago, but remember how warm it was? We even got to play in the sprinkler — can’t beat it. And little bro, 9 month old N — he is completely into playing his dad’s guitar. He was almost inconsolable when they put it away. But some sprinkler time got his mind off it, luckily.

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So much fun to see you guys as always!

The boys at six month old

We did these photos back in the end of June! It’s the beginning of October! How did I get so behind?? So sorry – and this is crazy because these two boys have the best bellies, the cutest grins – look at these little six month old cutie pies! How could anybody leave them to be unblogged all summer?

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Tom Partridge - October 8, 2015 - 2:10 pm

Hide your daughters people of Boston suburbia.

Acacia - October 8, 2015 - 2:13 pm

Amazing photos! I wish we had gotten some of these same angles (especially of their feet!) when we did a three-month old photo shoot last year. Maybe we can get some good 1.5 year old photos? (not sure they’ll sit still haha)

Jen Partridge - October 8, 2015 - 2:29 pm

Beautiful boys. Beautiful family. Gorgeous photos.

Ellie Laramee-Byers - October 8, 2015 - 2:33 pm

I love this set. Your family looks so happy!! Such handsome little critters!

Samantha Adams - October 8, 2015 - 3:36 pm

Gorgeous photos! Handsome little studs, amazing family.

Meg Paine - October 8, 2015 - 4:23 pm

These photos are so great! The boys are gorgeous…ahhhhh I can hardly stand the cuteness!

Ross - October 8, 2015 - 5:23 pm

Beautiful pictures!

Joanna - October 8, 2015 - 7:57 pm

two handsome, happy boys! Great pictures!

Miguel - October 8, 2015 - 8:13 pm

Their dad must be one handsome guy :)

lisa - October 8, 2015 - 8:57 pm

Friggin cute babies! And dog of course :-)

Jess Zeba - October 8, 2015 - 9:20 pm

Adorable, and love the thighs :)

Stephanie - October 8, 2015 - 9:27 pm

Aaaahhh!!! They’re so cute!!! I can’t believe they’re already 9 months old!!! Congrats to the 4 of you!!! Those boys have ridiculously cool parents, their childhood is going to rock!!!

Whitney - October 8, 2015 - 11:30 pm

Love these little buddies!

The twins at their dol

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I have too many photos for you again, I’m sorry to say! I got to attend a truly gorgeous dol jahbi a week or so ago for two fantastic little ladies, and I’m having such a hard time editing the photos down into a nice small gallery to show you. So I guess I’ll just show you TONS. A dol jahbi is a Korean first birthday celebration, and this was only the second one I’ve ever photographed! They did it at Shelburne Farm in Stow, so the cake was a gorgeous pile of cider donuts, and the guests got to pick apples in addition to all the party fun.

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I’m going to let the photos of the amazing decor and great times speak for themselves from here on out. So much fun to be had!

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All the cousins! It was wonderful to share in your celebration, thank you so much for having me.

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2015 Holiday card vendor roundup

holidaycard-vendorroundup2Well, here it is September… we blinked and the summer flew by, and now that kids are back to school we can start thinking about the fall. And why not spend a little time thinking about one of my favorite parts of the fall… holiday cards! I know, I know, too early! But I’ve had this post on my mind for a while, so I wanted to get it up on the blog.

I should start by saying I love that you’re thinking about doing holiday cards this year. Some people say it’s a dying art – that Facebook and social media in general have rendered the holiday card superfluous. Well, I disagree. I adore each and every card when it arrives in my mailbox – I love the joy they spread, the feel of the paper in your hands, the fact that after the season is over you can punch holes in them and stick a binder clip through the holes and voila, you have a coffee table book you and your family will love browsing every holiday season.

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I’m not kidding, your kids really will sit around and look through the books…

This is a completely unposed shot I snagged with my phone last December of my 9 year old and a handful of neighbors hanging out one afternoon in my living room. You can tell it’s unposed because there’s a sock on the coffee table. And one neighbor is looking through US Weekly instead of the holiday card books. Because dudes, this really happened. I really came upon them exactly like this. And I believe in keeping it real, people. Coffee table socks and all.

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But I digress. I started this blog post because I have no skin in the game – I completely honestly and truly don’t care who prints your cards for you (I just want you to do a card because I adore them). I always recommend working with any of my card partners (because, let’s be real here, they’re the companies who’ll put my website on the back of the card AND send me a little check after you place your order to thank me for referring you) but it really doesn’t matter to me who you choose because I love all of them. And most of all I just love cards. ANY card you make is a wonderfully perfect card, really and truly.

And because I’m a little obsessive, I’m going to take some time and write up some research for you. Do with it what you will. I’m going to do it for my three partners, Tiny Prints, Minted and Mango Ink, and I’m going to divide my research into Philosophy & Design Process, Papers and Pricing. And away we go!


PHILOSOPHY & DESIGN PROCESS

Tiny Prints: With thousands of customizable card designs on their website, it can be a quick and easy to drill down and find exactly what you’re looking for at Tiny Prints. I’ve found that they offer the most variety when it comes to layout options if you prefer to design the card yourself online. They explain that they “curate our collection from designs created exclusively for us by the industry’s top artists. You get the most trend-forward cards… We’ll worry over every dotted “i” and every crossed “t” and won’t stop until your order is flawless.”

Sometimes it can be a little overwhelming to dig through everything they offer, and some of my clients have told me that they freeze up a bit when they’re confronted with so many options, but most of my clients who’ve worked with Tiny Prints in the past tell me: “they’re easy-to-use”, “fast to get the task done”, and they have “a great selection”.

Minted: Minted also has thousands of card designs on their website, and while it seems to me that they have fewer layout options than Tiny Prints, they call themselves a “haven for paper connoisseurs”. They also describe themselves as “a marketplace of independent artists”, explaining that they “source creative content from a global community of independent artists, then sell the best… directly to consumers. An early pioneer of crowdsourcing, Minted has held art and design challenges monthly since April 2008. Challenges are open for both submission and voting, the ‘crowd’ curates Minted’s product selection by rating products, and Minted utilizes analytics to evaluate votes… Minted produces and sells winning designs, paying the designer a commission on every sale.”

My clients who’ve worked with Minted in the past tell me some of the same things about all the options and their analysis paralysis I mentioned in the Tiny Prints paragraph, but in general, my clients tell me: “they have a great selection”, “I love their other products”, “I love their designs”, and “they’re easy-to-use”.

Mango Ink: Mango Ink is a boutique-style card company with a clean and simple style. They’re located on the west coast, and are owned by husband and wife Heidi and Ryan Miller. They’ve been in business 10 years, and their philosophy is completely different than the big box companies like Tiny Prints and Minted, in that they’re essentially your personal card designer. You start by finding a card you like on their website and placing an order, and they’ll change it to fit your personality. They think of the designs on their site as “ideas”, and they want you to find some element or elements you love and then have them to make it just right for you. They’ll “work with you ’til it works” and they tell me “nobody’s stuck, ever.” Their turnaround time is also extraordinarily quick in the busy holiday season.

My clients who’ve worked with Mango Ink in past years tell me: “they’re helpful”, “responsive”, “super easy”, “better quality”, “different”, “committed to making the card perfect for me, no matter how many tries it took”, “the paper quality was amazing”, “nice and patient”, “their website is a lot less overwhelming”, “terrific”, “creative in their suggestions”, “responsive to requests at the height of the busy season”, and they make “great quality cards”.


PAPERS

I’ve learned a lot about card papers doing this research – very interesting. I’m going to try to simplify for you. So to start, you know when you get the cards in the mail there are the thin ones, the ones that feel like they’re printed on photo paper (and on the back they look like a photo with the printer’s name stamped diagonally across it? They kind of curl up when you put them on the mantle?) Those aren’t the ones we’re talking about here. Those ones are less expensive than the ones I’m reviewing here, and are available to order on photo websites like Shutterfly and Snapfish or from stores like CVS and Walgreens.

So the papers I’m comparing about are the ones that are thicker – the primary “signature” paper offered by my three card partners. There’s also Double Thick, which is fun and really substantial. Minted even offers a TripleThick option, which is completely unbendable.

I’ll cut to the chase here – there’s one that’ll blow you away. It’s smooth and the photos look insanely crisp, bright and beautiful on it. You kind of want to caress this paper, trust me. It’s the 130 lb Smooth paper offered by Mango Ink. I highlighted the price for it in blue in the pricing table below. (For me, the one discount paper listed below (the Tiny Prints 100 lb Studiobasics paper) isn’t quite thick enough – it feels a little flimsy. It isn’t as flimsy as the photo paper I described above, but it isn’t that thick card stock I’m looking for.) The 110 lb – 130 lb papers offered by Tiny Prints and Minted are matte, and although they’re nice and thick to the touch, I just adore the way the photos look on the 130 lb smooth from Mango Ink.

 


PRICING

For the pricing section, I’m going to attempt compare apples to apples, so I’m going to price 100 of their full priced cards*. (That being said, Tiny Prints has, in past years, offered my clients as much as a 40% off coupon. In 2014 Minted offered my clients a 30% off coupon – in 2015 so far they’ve offered my clients only a 20% off coupon, but they say that they “have a very special offer coming soon” – so I imagine they might increase that discount as the season goes on? Not sure. Mango Ink has an ongoing, always-valid offer of 35% off for my clients. More info about coupon codes for all of these offers is up on the holiday cards page of my website. If there isn’t a current coupon listed, email me and I’ll see if I can get a coupon for you from my contacts at these companies. There are always sales running, but suffice it to say we can usually get you substantial discounts off these prices during the holiday season.

*pricing data collected September 2015

Discount Card Paper (4″x9″ flat card) Unit price when you buy 100 Standard Card Paper (5×7 flat card) Unit price when you buy 100 Thicker paper (5×7 flat card) Unit price when you buy 100 
Tiny Prints 100 lb Studiobasics semi-glossy paper  $1.14 110 lb, 16 point Signature Matte or 120 lb, 11 point Signature Semi-Glossy paper (they don’t have any 100% recycled paper available) $1.69-$1.89 depending on quantity of photos and design chosen 220 lb Premium Double Thick Matte $2.78-$2.88 depending on quantity of photos and design chosen
Minted No discount papers available N/A 120 lb Signature paper or 130 lb 100% recycled Premium Paper $1.63 for Signature or $1.80 for 100% recycled Premium 240 lb, 35 point, DoubleThick $2.73
Mango Ink No discount papers available  N/A 110 lb Matte (100% recycled) or 130 lb Smooth paper $1.76 Double thick 38 point savoy cotton $3.16

So there you go. My takeaway from this pricing research is that after you apply the various discounts, these three vendors are priced nearly exactly the same. The one priced the highest (Tiny Prints) offers the 40% off discount, the mid-priced one (Mango Ink) offers the 35% off discount, and the lowest (Minted) offers the (currently 20%, but perhaps as much as) 30% off discount. So at the end of the day you should choose the one you like the best, and not choose based on price, in my humble opinion, since they’re so similar.

So there’s my research, do with it what you will. I hope it’s helpful!

And don’t forget to send me a copy of your card :)

 

Kelly Young - November 12, 2016 - 10:09 am

Excellent roundup, very helpful. Thanks, Jess!

Nine photoshoots in as many years

This is #19 in my series of Family Retrospective Videos – for more information about this project or to sign up to be added to the list of families who wants one, click this link and scroll down the page through the previous posts back to the first or second one (where I describe it in more detail).

I met these guys in 2006 when they had me come for photos of their then 2 1/2 year old cutie Will, and the following fall their sweet Charlotte had joined their family too. I’ve loved visiting every fall since then!

And without further ado, here’s a 5 minute video of Will and Charlotte’s family with photos from nine photoshoots over the last nine years:

(Hint: Start playing the video, and then click on the little gear thing that takes you to “Settings” in the bottom right corner of the video. Choose 720p to make the slideshow play in high-definition. You can also choose “Full Screen” down there in that corner of the video too.)