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Monday, December 28, 2015

Heading To New Beginnings!

I'm always blessed with a session that seems to bookend the end of a year & the beginning of a new one.  I was honored yesterday to do another session for a dear friend of mine since 7th grade.  ...Just a few years ago.  ;)  Rather than yoga poses this was various, casual head shots.  I always say she's the ying to my yang & I don't mean dark & light & positive & negatives.  We've both been thru some hard things in life, but completely different experiences.  But our different life experiences still bring us to the same worries, the same tears, the same joys - but for various reasons.  I think we are a perfect example to each other & a reminder that we are all on different paths in life.  It's an adventure that is scary & fun and no matter where we are on these different roads we are never alone.  She took a leap of faith last year - sold her yoga studios & belongings & traveled via back pack to many places including Costa Rica, Guatemala, Venezuela & Mexico.  She's back state side & ready to take on 2016.  We both are looking to take our careers in new directions & once again it makes things seem scary & exciting.  I  know we will - as always be there for each other.  Happy New Year!  {{Hugs}}

Saturday, December 12, 2015


The final bit of new info for 2016. Thank You! smile emoticon
Payment needs to be paid in full on the day of the session. Checks can be made out to Star Portrais LLC. Processing of images will not begin until the session is paid for & orders will not be shipped until monies have cleared. Checks can be made out to Star Portraits LLC. Insufficient funds are subject to a $35 fee.
At this time Star Portraits is not currently doing weddings but also does Senior sessions, Engagement, First Holy Communion, "Birth"days, Cake Smashes, Head Shots, Greeting Cards & Invitations as well as gift certificates. Images Ala Carte are also available.
Additional $25 fee for traveling outside of Lake County
It's your turn to shine!

Friday, December 11, 2015

A New & Exciting Session Package!!!

The Avant Garde Session

Payment is due at the time of your session.
Avant Garde sessions are special, unique & stylized sessions as advertised by Star Portraits & held on a certain date advertised.   What is a stylized session?  A styled session is a creatively designed photo shoot based on a concept or theme. Styled sessions take additional hours to plan, set up, and dismantle.  These sessions include  a specific theme & artistic vibe included with some props & sometimes costuming provided by Star Portraits.    Included with this session = Artistic processing on 10 - 15 digital files selected by the artistic discretion of Star Portraits. All images are the final artistic process & photography style of Star Portraits & can not be altered afterwards. Specific requests must be made prior to the session.  An online gallery, password protected within 2-3 weeks.  Sneak peeks on my blog within 3 days.   And my time & talent.  CD also comes with a Release Authorization to print the images at any location of your choice.   It's your turn to shine!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

My Lifestyle Sessions...

Lifestyle Session
Payment is due at the time of your session.
Family portraits are no longer required to be awkwardly posed, have matching shirts, or fake smiles. While that may be what some grandparents are use to, those aren’t the photos that capture real life heart & emotion.  During a lifestyle session with families for example - I will also capture casually posed shots of your entire family,  individual shot, and a couple of just the parents.   Lifestyle sessions include - Family, Children, Newborn...  Included with this session = Artistic processing on 10 - 15 digital files selected by the artistic discretion of Star Portraits. All images are the final artistic process & photography style of Star Portraits & can not be altered afterwards. Specific requests must be made prior to the session.  An online gallery within 2-3 weeks that is password protected.  Sneak peeks on my blog within 3 days.   And my time & talent.   Families are up to 5 people. Each additional person is $25. CD also comes with a Release Authorization to print the images at any location of your choice.   It's your turn to shine!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

What's In the New For 2016?

New info about session packages & more new info to come soon!  Sessions can last anywhere from 10 minutes to 1 hour.  Perhaps up to 2 hours with the Avant Garde sessions.  With years of doing this & as a mommy to 3 of my own I don't see the need to torture children.  I go at their pace & their comfort.  If we busted out many amazing shots in the first 20 minutes & they have lost interest I do not see the need to continue on till they become agitated & upset.  I want having their picture taken to be something they always enjoy & remember with happiness.  Each additional hour is $35. There may be unlimited wardrobe changes with time permitting.   Sessions are held at 1 set location.  Either your home, a location of you choice or my outdoor studio.  Outdoor venues only with weather permitting.  There is a $20 fee for additional locations in a session.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Another Q&A...

What is your style of photography? - I am passionate about capturing what is most special to my heart. My husband & children are my every breath. I try to capture images for my clients that are true to the moment. No matter the age, the temperament, the personality, etc... For example: some moms get stressed because their baby refuses to sit for a session without a paci. That is what they enjoy at the age. Let's capture it. Or their child will just not sit still & wants to run about. That is who they are today. Let's capture that before they grow again tomorrow. My work has been described as ethereal & emotional. You are investing in your families history. Images from your session are more than memories. They are your life story. heart emoticon

Friday, November 20, 2015

This Is How I Roll

What do you love most about running your own business? For me, my family comes 1st. My children & husband are my #1 priority. I love that I can work from home & create my own schedule. If you might be interested in hiring me please understand that I only book 1 - 2 sessions per month. I had usually been booked full for the year by February. I can say with much thankfullness that I am already almost fully booked for 2016. Sometimes my children who are pretty well behaved come with me on jobs. We are a package deal. They either sit quietly off to the side & play with a toy I brought them or they are wonderful at being put to work too. When I keep my family a priorty it then allows for myself to be fully dedicated to each session I have booked. I enjoy photography so much that each session is a time I look forward to. It is my ME time & I enjoy it most when I have not over booked myself & then feel stretched or fearing that I am not taking time to properly care for my family. That is also why at this time I have taken a step back from doing weddings. Because my family is my world - capturing your family & your loved ones takes a special place in my heart as well. heart emoticon

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Q&A #2

How long has Star Portraits been in business? I have been in business since January 2009. Though I had been doing photographs for friends families, weddings & the band Second Shade & my oldest daughter for about 6 years prior to that. I am primarily self taught - though I did take a digi course at Lakeland CC with the talented photographer, David Schwartz, a couple photo shop classes at Van's & continuously educate myself online with webinars & tutorials. Not to mention the constant practice of my craft. I have come a long way since 2009 & prior, but I am thankful that in photography their is no plateau & you are forever able to grow your skills & become better than you were yesterday. It's an element I try to carry over for life in general.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Refresh! ~ Under Construction

With getting ready to freshen up Star Portraits I thought I would also give everyone some fun Q & A's on myself here & there till all my new info is ready. Here we go! A little interview from me, about me, to you. wink emoticon 
What was your journey to become a photographer? 
Like most everyone I always had a love of it. I received my 1st camera - A Kodak Disc camera for Christmas from a family member when I was 10 years old. Years later I had so much fun taking pictures while my husbands ( then boyfriend ) band performed live; that for our 1st Christmas he got me my 1st pro camera gear. A Nikon N65, with lens, flash & filters. And that was still back in the days of film. Not long after that a friend asked me to take pictures of her baby. A neighbor asked me to be the photographer for her sons wedding. Still...the bell in my brain never went off. Lol! It wasn't till after my 1st child was born that I used a work bonus to buy my 1st pro digi which at the time was a Nikon D50. It's still my fave. I love the weight of it. The way it fits perfectly in my hands. My Lily's last portraits by other photogs was when she was a year old. After that I did them & still never gave a thought about being a photographer till her 18m pics when Walgreens wouldn't let me pick up my prints because they needed a photo release from the I was SO happy. That Summer I also won 1st place in the People category at the Concord Community Days Photography Contest. But it wasn't something I could pursue till baby #2& I was forced to stay home to raise our children. In 2009 my hobby received a name, a slogan & a tax id by the state of Ohio. I'm Dawn Holt. The owner & photographer of Star Portraits. It's your turn to shine! 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Last of the Fabulous Fall Mini's!

Out of all my bookings for this session only 1 family was brave enough to model in the chill.  It snowed only for a minute when we first started, but the sun was shining by the time we were done.  Too bad because I had even more settings designed up besides the one you see here & my awesome husband even started a fire for pictures which also doubled as a nice spot to warm up in between shots.  Another extra fun tidbit is that my husband & I have known this husband & wife since 7th grade.  I always love sessions all the more when their is that extra special element to them.  Thank you M family for braving the cold & warming my lens with your beautiful hearts.
PS:  These are the last of the mini's.  I will no longer be doing mini sessions.  2016 is going to be a leap into the sky for Star Portraits with a new vibe & prices.  I am very excited for this new direction.  Stay tuned to my blog & Facebook page for the details in the next couple months.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Love Vs. Love

Headed to this job early as I had never been to this park before & I wanted to scope out some posing areas.  It was beautiful & I was getting especially excited for the D Family to show up.  Hadn't met them before, but as I saw them get out of the car - half in Browns outfit & the other in Steelers...I knew this was going to be an extra fun session!  Yes, it was fun & such beautiful weather with this beautiful family.  Thank You!!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

History Chugging By...

We live in a beautiful Victorian filled with history on a dead end street.  It's a dead end street because our home is three down from train tracks.  It took some quick getting use to & for the most part we don't notice them that often anymore.  But what a treat when a neighbor texted that she heard a vintage steam engine was heading our way & to grab my camera.  It was AmAzInG!!!  I wish the trains still sounded that adorable too.  How special when we can still capture memories of today...& the past!  Here's some historical dibit on this beauty from the Lake County History Center.
"#nickelplate765 just passed through our backyard. What an amazing site!
From the host organization, Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society: "Historic steam locomotive no. 765 is a high-stepping, fourteen-w
heeled, magnificent machine that stands 15 feet tall, weighs 404 tons, goes over 60 miles an hour and restored to the way it looked and sounded when it was built by the Lima Locomotive Works in 1944.
Celebrated for pulling passenger excursions throughout the country as a goodwill ambassador, the 765 is the pride of the Fort Wayne Railroad Historical Society and one of only a handful of steam locomotives that still operate in the United States."

Monday, July 20, 2015

Miss O In WOnderland

Another enchanted session with Miss O who is turning 3 now.  So many beautiful images from yesterday, but I used this one since her mommy did such a fabulous job finding much of this Alice awesomeness for her birthday party & most of it was used in this set up.  A first session for my outdoor dining room too, I was pretty stoked on many levels.  You really have no idea how honored I am to capture memories for all my Star Portrait lovies; & to watch them grow is "wonder"ful too.  Having that said ~ June 2016 is booked & I've already been asked the week before if I was taking appointments for next year so I did today go out & buy a 2016 calendar.  Such doesn't usually happen until November!  My heartfelt thanks to you all!  Big changes are coming for Star Portraits in 2016 & once I finalize things I can't wait to share the details with all of you.  In the meantime...hope your 3rd birthday party was as fun as your portrait session was for me Miss O!  {{Hugs!}}

Monday, July 13, 2015

Portraits & Play

Yet another very fun session with Miss "C".  Outfit changes, playgrounds, flowers, running around & other such fun.  You would think it to be easy peazy, but pretty lil doll worked the camera so much she fell asleep within minutes of heading home in the car.  It's been so wonderful watching her grow!  {{Hugs}}

Monday, June 8, 2015

A New Sunday Sunshine!

In much thanks to one of my regular stars Miss "E" or aka Miss Sunshine; I was honored to meet her lil friend Miss "F" who is indeed another tiny ray of sunlight herself.  She was insanely cute & adores her mommy. The weather was beautiful which was extra great since later this day was also her 1st birthday party.  I hope this new special doll had a wonderful time & has many big birthday wishes come true!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

April Showers...Bring May Birthday Wishes!

Seems like we are hopefully done with snow and while we are still missing the colors of Spring outside there was nothing but warmth & cuteness in my studio today.  I got to spend the morning playing dress up & sweet chit chats with two classy ladies.  One being this beautiful doll & her mom.  With this tiny tot being the youngest with 3 older brothers I am pretty sure she is going to have a most special first birthday.  Hope all your wishes come true!  Thank you for a super sweet session!