Monday, January 23, 2012

16 years and counting.....

Hard to belive that Gary and I have been married for 16 years. We celebrated our Anniversary with a trip to Roccaraso in the Abruzzi region of Italy. We rented a little place just on the east side of the mountain in a little village ( I will update with the name and more photos). We went to ski, and had a fabulous time. It is a bit different than the skiing we have done in the Poconos but fun none the less. Here are some photos I took with the Canon underwater camera that I have. And it is a good thing that it is waterproof as it was burried in the snow a couple of times lol. You know a photographer can not leave home without some sort of camera haha. Hope you enjoy the photos. I will post more hopefully tomorrow.
The kids all bundled up. We were told we would freeze, but by the time we got to the top we were sweating lol. Maybe because we were so close to the sun?

Gary and I with about 5 layers of clothing haha.

In case you can't see the writing in 2nd photo, I circled the building and wrote that those are buildings. They look like little hills until you realize that the little black speck is a builing! These are the same photos.

Just another view from the top of the mountain.

I swear we paid for the view. And these photos don't do it justice. 

Let the skiing begin....
Gary and Sommer ready to hit the trail. And those are mountains in the bottom of the blue too.

Monday, January 16, 2012

New Props!

Check out my new rugs/blankets that I have for sessions. These will be awesome for Seniors, Newborns and yes those Boudoir sessions!

Got all 3 from vendors at a market here in Napoli. I will definitely be purchasing more! They are all so soft, I can't wait to use them. Who is up for a session?

Friday, January 13, 2012

Here is a video I put together quickly with just a few of my travel images. There will be more of these to come. If you see an image that you like and would like to order please contact me. I am working on getting some posted to either my current site or a new one. Hope you enjoy!
And remember if you like my work like me on facebook. And don't forget to share with your friends!
I have a contest running for the most referrals sent to my fb page.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Boudoir and Glamour

OK I have decided to make add a video with some of my clients boudoir and glamour images. I do not like posting individual photos to Facebook so videos of images it is.

I have been privileged enough to photograph some beautiful women over the years. These are just a few of the many. Many requested that I not use their images for advertising and such, and being a professional I will honor their requests.


If you are in the Naples Italy area and interested in tasteful, sexy images please contact me. I will be here until 2014!
I offer boudoir parties. You can earn your session for free! Just get your friends together have some food and wine and we can have a boudoir party! I also have a post a couple of years back that has great ideas of what to wear and what props to bring.
I hope you enjoy! I think my work speaks for its self.

If you like my work please like my facebook page here
or my website here

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Send your friends my way! Prizes to be had :D

Today I reached 600 likes on my photography facebook page: Breezy Cranford Photography Facebook
Thanks to Chad Thompson, a hometown friend. He won a print from me from our trip to Paris. I just haven't decided which photo yet. Thanks again Chad!
Now I am offering another contest for my page. This time I have to get to 750 likes. This contest will be for the most referrals to my page. So if you like my photography and would like to win some of it, then please pass the link along to your friends. You can keep up with my blog from Facebook as it will let you know when I update the blog. So no need to subscribe or stalk my page lol.
If you refer a friend please have them post your name in a thread on my page so that I know who sent them.

I am sure it will take a little while to reach the 750 since we just broke the 600 mark earlier today. So if you are in Naples the prize could be anything. And for those of you in the states it could be just about anything too as I plan to be home mid Jan. 2013 for a couple of weeks. I will be in VA, NC and GA if all goes according to plan.

Start sharing my link now and get your name on my list.
They can go directly to my facebook page here
they can go to my website and get to the facebook link or back to here.

Thanks for all of the support!

I will announce the price the closer we get to the 750 and can also post the referals if you guys would like.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

He sure is a handsome young man....

If I do say so myself. I can't believe he is 14. Time sure does fly by. Austin's birthday was Saturday. We spent a quiet day at home per his request. He requested dinner and a cake lol.
Yes those are snow capped mountains behind him, along with an orchard and vineyard. Love the view from our balconies.

Austin is a chocoholic to say the least. We were at the NEX early last week and I told him to go to the Ice cream store and tell me what he wanted on his cake. We always do ice cream cakes for them. He came back and said they didn't have anything but plain chocolate ice cream and chocolate cake.
So he asked me to make him a cake. HAHA. I am crafy with a camera but when it comes to baking and decorating yeah um not so much.
Any way here is his chocolate cake um I mean brownie cake lol. Thought I had a cake mix but didn't so we improvised and make the "cake like" brownies instead of the usual chewy ones. He requested the chocolate ice crean, crushed oreos, semi sweet chocolate chips, M&Ms and chocolate icing.
It was so sweet even he couldn't finish his slice lol.
Here are a couple quick snaps of his cake.

And yes I know that is an ugly cake. I think it is the ugliest cake I have ever seen. But he was totally happy with it and that is all that matters :D

Man that sure is a lot of fire!

Yeah he blew them all out.

Thank goodness we didn't set off the smoke detectors.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Le Monte Saint Michel and more.....

Here are a few more images from our trip to France.
Most are from Le Mont Saint Michel. Absolutely beautiful!

This is part of one of the doors. They are huge.

The view from the Cathedral area. When the tide comes in they water surrounds it. You are even told what time you have to move your car or it will be underwater.

This was by the gardens

Ivy growing on the wall. We saw this in several places in France. I loved seeing it growing on the houses.

View from the parking lot.

View from the road. I think this is my absolute favorite.

Sheep in the field with Le Mont Saint Michel in the background. This was suggested to me by my friend Amanda. Thanks again Amanda.

One of the graves at La Cambe German Cememtery/

View of the cemetery in the fall. the colors here were stunning. And the gray sky added to it.

Craters from the bombs at La Pointe Du Hoc.
Here are a couple of links

Friday, January 06, 2012

Just a few images from our trip to France.

Well I decided while I had a little time today that I would process a few images from our trip to France. I think they turned out great. They are just random photos from the coast line around Cherbourg France. There will be more to come.
This one is the river front in Cherbourg.

These 2 are both from the plane as we were leaving Naples, destination Paris.

Just a cool view of the water.

And those who know me know that I like to photography lighthouses :D

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Why are Professional Photographers so expensive?

I borrowed this article from
It is a great article about WHY professional photographers charge what they do for the photos. I believe this sums it up well. And I felt the need to publish this link here after the discussion that was just had on Facebook.

Why are Professional Photographers so expensive? This article has been very well received by the photography community, and is published in the December 2009 edition of Professional Photographer Magazine.

In this digital age where everyone has cameras, scanners, and home "photo printers," we hear this all the time: How do professional (or personal) photographers charge $X for an 8x10 when they cost just $1.50 at the drugstore? Simply put, the customer is not just paying for the actual photograph; they're paying for time and expertise.

The average one-hour portrait session

First, let's look at the actual work involved:

  • Travel to the session
  • Setup, preparation, talking to the client, etc.
  • Shoot the photos
  • Travel from the session
  • Load images onto a computer
  • Back up the files on an external drive
  • 2 - 4 hours of Adobe® Photoshop® time, including cropping, contrast, color, sharpening, and backing up edited photographs. Proof photos are also ordered.
  • 2 - 3 hours to talk to the client, answer questions, receive order and payment, order their prints, receive and verify prints, package prints, schedule shipment, and ship.
  • Possibly meet clients at the studio to review photos and place order. Meeting and travel time average 2 hours.

You can see how a one-hour session easily turns into an eight-hour day or more from start to finish. So when you see a personal photographer charging a $200 session fee for a one-hour photo shoot, the client is NOT paying them $200 per hour.

The eight-hour wedding

A wedding photographer typically meets with the bride and groom several times before and after the wedding. And it’s not uncommon to end up with 1,000 - 2,000 photos, much more than a portrait session. Many photographers spend 40-60 hours working on one eight-hour wedding if you look at the time that is truly involved. Again, when a wedding photographer charges $4,000 for eight hours of coverage, clients are NOT paying them $500 an hour!

(Don’t forget that the photographer runs the wedding day to some extent. A comfortable, confident wedding photographer can make a wedding day go more smoothly.)

The expertise and cost of doing business

Shooting professional photography is a skill acquired through years of experience. Even though a DSLR now costs under $1,000, taking professional portraits involves much more than a nice camera.

Most personal photographers take years to go from buying their first camera to making money with photography. In addition to learning how to use the camera, there is a mountain of other equipment and software programs used to edit and print photographs, run a website, etc. And don’t forget backdrops, props, rent, utilities, insurance, etc!

In addition to the financial investment, photographers actually have to have people skills to make subjects comfortable in front of the camera. Posing people to look their best is a skill by itself. You could argue that posing is a more important skill than actually knowing how to use the camera. A poorly exposed photo can be saved, but a badly posed photo cannot.

The chain store photo studio

Chain stores do have their place. For a very cheap price you can run in, shoot some quick photos, and be done with it. But you get what you pay for.

Consider the time and effort that a personal photographer puts into photographs, compared to a chain store. Store sessions last just a few minutes, while a personal photographer takes the time to get to know the people, makes them comfortable, makes them laugh. If a baby is crying at a chain store, they often don’t have the time (or the patience) to wait because everyone is in a hurry.

The truth is that many chain store studios lose money. In fact, Wal-Mart closed 500 of their portrait studios in 2007 because of the financial drain. What the chain stores bank on is a client coming in for quick, cheap photos…and while there, spending $200 on other items. They are there to get you in the door.

The real deal

Professional, personal photographers are just that—professionals. No different than a mechanic, dentist, doctor, or electrician. But a personal photographer often becomes a friend, someone who documents a family for generations with professional, personal photographs of cherished memories.

Maybe we need to help clients look at it this way: A pair of scissors costs $1.50 at the drugstore. Still, most people will gladly pay a lot more to hire a professional hair dresser to cut their hair.

The added attention and quality that a personal photographer gives is worth every penny.


We hope that those who have taken the time to read this page will have a better understanding of why professional photographs, created by a Personal Photographer are so expensive.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Shawn, Pamela and Gavin Richter -

Our website - Caught on Film Photography

Our photography fourm - Learning Digital Photography Together

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Portraits are more than paper.....

I want to share this post with you. I first read it in an email this morning from Adorama I believe. This hopefully makes people think about their "memories".  Memories are precious to us all. And having them on Paper helps pass those on to the next generation.
This is borrowed (Copied and pasted exactly) from
A letter on my door step. portraits are more than paper.
There will be no portrait photos in this post. This letter wasn’t mailed – it was at my doorstep when I got home a couple months ago. I read it, I cried, and read it again – probably a hundred times by now. It wasn’t easy to read – and honestly, as much as it validates what I do for a living – I wasn’t sure I was going to share it either – Until today, when a past client said that my print prices were too expensive. If you choose to read through the letter, you will know why I’ve finally chosen to share it.
July 2nd, 2011
Jeanine -
Today I am writing for a couple of reasons. I have some quiet time at the moment and need to get a couple of things off my mind. I will leave this for my husband to deliver to you when he is ready.
You photographed my wedding, you photographed my first pregnancy and my first baby. I contacted you awhile back to photograph my 2nd child and family. After getting prices and realizing I would want all of the pictures as we love your work – I decided against spending $500+ – which is what I normally spend for portraits and prints with you.. Please know it is not because I don’t value your amazing eye, or how much we love the experience.
That week that I decided to NOT do a session with you, this is how I spent some money.
On Sunday I called and cancelled our session. Monday I went out and got my hair cut ($39+tip), and colored ($65), Thursday I had my nails done ($24), my family went out to dinner at a somewhat expensive restaurant for no particular reason costing us $79 + tip. This was just 4 days since canceling our session, already totaling over $200 for un necessary things. My nails only lasted about 2 weeks, my hair is gone, and seven weeks passed when I got the phone call from our doctor. It was not something I expected and the cancer has spread very quickly. I will be leaving my husband, my 6 year old girl and my now 2 year old – not by choice. It is very hard for me to talk about it which is why I need to write you.
I watch your Facebook page and your posts about the value of a photo and if I could give back all of those things that I purchased this few weeks after I cancelled my session with you, knowing what I know now, and have that session, well… I would do it in a heartbeat.
Now my time is done and there are no more chances for me. The next time someone cancels a session – my wish is that you forward this letter to them. Time is fragile, it is gone before you know you had it. If you charged $200 for one print it wouldn’t be enough for what it is actually worth. I cringe to think that my priorities were a manicure over a memory to pass onto my babies and husband.
My love and thanks for what you have given us from past photos. I am so sorry that I did not see it as more than paper until now.
Karen L.

So please the next time you cancel a session or inquire and never book a session because of price, those are memories you will never be able to share of your family. You may not have tomorrow. None of us know if we will be here tomorrow.
Remember you get what you pay for!

Monday, January 02, 2012

What to wear for the Mini Valentines Day Sessions

I have had a couple of people ask me what to wear for the photography sessions I am offering on Jan. 14th 2012 at the Market Playce. They will be held at the Community Center onboard NSA Naples Support Site.

I was referred to a photographer that offers up these great templates by my friend Shakyra Canchaney who is also a photographer down at NSA Sigonella, Sicily.
I know the photo says November but I think it would work great for the Valentine photos here in Naples now that it is starting to get colder. Hopefully this gives you a few ideas and you can put your on twist on these. I would be happy to offer my opinion  as well.

Over View of what to wear for any session

All in all you should Coordinate outfits. That does not mean everyone in white shirts and khaki pants or black shirts with jeans for casual portraits. You want everyone to pop in the photo, not blend together like a blob with a few heads.

Colors and Patterns are a natural part of life. So use them to your advantage, but do not use every color of the rainbow. Again you want to make sure that you coordinate the colors together. Patterns are ok as long as they are not distracting and taking the attention away from YOU the SUBJECT. That would mean smaller ones and only use them sparingly. Just like with the colors, don't use competing patterns, it will only distract the viewer. Avoid large logos and graphics again too distracting. The best way to do this would be pick someones outfit first, usually the patterned person and then play off of it. Find everyone elses clothing by matching up the color schemes to the pattern. Just make sure that the color you choose for each person goes well with their complexion.

Layering is a great way to change up similar portraits. It provide a more visual interest, and it will allow a lot more variety in your shots and poses. Great ideas would be a scarf, hat, sweater, tie, belt etc.. The ideas are limitless.

At Breezy Cranford Photography I want your portraits to speak volumes about you and your family. Have a family meeting and discuss props that represent your family. It could be anything, I just want to capture YOUR family or childs personality in the portraits I take. Bring collective props for the family and also individuals for each family member. If you all enjoy your time at the beach or lake why not hold your session there? What about the snow and skiing? We can do that too.

MakeupLadies if you normally wear makeup then apply just a tad darker than you normally would. It will enhance your photo. Do not go overboard, don't apply it heavy like the models on the run way do. Just bump it up a notch. If you don't normally wear makeup then at least apply a little mascara, blush and lip gloss. A little goes a long way. And another tip for you ladies who don't wear much makeup, the ladies at the NEX makeup counters will gladly give you a "mini" makeover for Free! And then you don't have to worry about the makeup.

Changes of Clothing are allowed for all sessions minus the "mini" specials that I offer from time to time. And that is just because of time constraints. But normal family, newborn, boudoir, bridal sessions etc... all allow for clothing changes.

Plan accordingly. Give ample time to have everything in line before the session. You don't want to be rushing around last minute trying to get haircuts or coordinating outfits etc...

Most importantly is BE YOURSELF! Don't wear something just because someone else said to. Don't put your kids in uncomfortable clothes. If they are uncomfortable the portraits will not be as memorable as you had hoped. You want the express your personality or your families personality, not someone you aren't.

Remember what your home Decor is like. If it is very casual and "liveable" then you normally want that to be the style of your photos. If your house is very elegant and everything is in its rightful place then you may very well prefer a more elegant and glamorous session. On this note also think about where you have bare walls or where you want to hang your portraits. We can incorporate that into your session. Especially knowing you want a landscape orientation style portrait over a portrait orientation to fill the spot above the mantel etc... is very helpful.

Also for those of you who are interested in the boudoir sessions I am holding in a private location on Jan. 15th 2012 you can search boudoir here on my blog and I have a HUGE list of ideas for clothing and props!

These outfit ideas come from . Thanks for sharing your talent with fellow photographers!

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Buon Anno Neapolitan Style!

As you can tell we had a pretty good view of the Naples Firework display to ring in the New Year. This was a first for us. We have never seen fireworks like this before. I swear I think they set off as many fireworks as the entire US would set off for New Years lol. We had a 360 degree view of them! They lasted until well after 130am. Snoopy just had to come to the roof top with us as she didn't want to be left out. So after putting her back in the house a couple of times we let her stay. She was fine with the initial  erruption of the right at midnight. But once a couple of our neighbors set them off right in the street beside of our house, she was gone lol. Those went right over our heads. We had a great time roasting those weenies and marshmellows, and drinking hot chocolate.
Happ New Year to everyone. Hope you enjoyed the photographs.