POWDER BLUE PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG

Pittsburgh Maternity Photographer | Pregnancy Perfection | Studio Maternity Portrait

A third trimester mother/daughter studio portrait…. the sweetest!

This first one went in an album spread and I loved how it looked so much in the album that I made this composite just for my blog.  I am thinking also that I will make a 20×30″ canvas for my studio, yes! This is actually a fairly simple portrait to do (lighting-wise) that I do with all of my maternity studio clients–I just haven’t assembled it as a composite before but I LOVE it.

maternity composite portrait

The little guy in these belly pics made his entrance just a couple weeks ago and is the cutest thing.  I have his newborn photos to share later this week, including some sweet sibling portraits.

mother daughter maternity portrait

How perfect to have mother/daughter portraits just before little brother comes!

studio maternity portrait eggnog background

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Are you looking for a maternity, newborn, family, or baby photographer in Pittsburgh?  Powder Blue Photography offers in-home and studio portraits of newborn babies and maternity and on location family portraits in and around Pittsburgh, including the South Hills, McMurray, Peters Township, Canonsburg, Bridgeville, Upper St. Clair, South Fayette, Mt. Lebanon, Cecil Township, Squirrel Hill, Regent Square, and Shadyside areas.  Please contact Missy to schedule a maternity appointment and a tentative date for your newborn session.  Maternity sessions take place around 33-36 weeks, and newborn sessions take place in the first 10 days of life.  Family sessions take place anytime!

Pittsburgh Newborn Family Photographer | Artsy Couture Canvas Deconstruction & Review

There are a lot of choices when it comes to products for my clients.  I generally sell canvas or framed fine art wall portraits, as well as archival custom photo albums, and have shopped a number of products to find the very best in quality for my clients.

In a canvas printer I am looking for, above all, extremely high image quality–sharp image and accurate color tones.  I am very actively involved in assuring my colors and tones are accurate by using the X-rite “Passport” color checker when I am shooting and editing and a Spyder to calibrate my monitor.  I double-check compatibility with each of the vendors that I work with to make sure I will get consistent, accurate color in my products. For those of you unfamiliar with how this works, what I am talking about is making sure that the color and brightness settings on my monitor are set to look like what I will get from my print labs so that I don’t get skin tones that are too orange, green, dark, bright, etc.

Secondly I am looking for solid, archival construction.  I want my canvas wrapped around wood with quality hanging hardware and bumpers.  NO CARDBOARD.  Just no.

I was using a canvas printer that I liked very much for a few years when I suddenly started having color issues back in October 2013.  I had been hearing so much about Artsy Couture, and their prices were less than my printer at the time, so I tried them out.  What I received from them was what appeared to be a well constructed, solid canvas, but the colors were way off–super orange.  Their customer service was amazing–friendly & prompt–and they sent out a new canvas that was better but still not the color & sharpness I am seeing from the pro labs I usually work with. I ended up taking a loss on that order and paying to have my client’s order printed at another lab (the one I am currently using).

I went to the Artsy booth at Imaging USA earlier this week and was very impressed with the quality of their products, their cute booth, and their friendly staff.  I was told that they were having short-lived color issues at the time of my order and that I should try again.  I was also told that the canvases are stretched around wood, which really surprised me because I figured it was some sort of super rigid cardboard given they cost a small fraction of the pro lab canvas wraps. Upon returning home I decided to dig up that old canvas–the one I received with color issues, and deconstruct it!  Here is what I found…

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
Yes, you could say these are the “tightest corners in the industry.” How do they accomplish this?

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
Sawtooth hanging hardware–not bad but I like a picture wire better.

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
These are some serious staples. They are not going anywhere. In fact during the deconstruction process I stabbed a finger with one of these so if you see smudges on the canvas that’s my blood!

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
I cut a large in the backing, which is very thick black card stock… and what I saw was….

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
Masonite! These are not wrapped around wood, but Masonite panels

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
You can see how solid the corners are, these are seriously not going anywhere and took some effort to get apart.

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
Here is my helper demonstrating how they get those tight corners–the canvas is actually pinched in between the Masonite that makes up the corners of the frame.

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
Again it took some serious effort to get the sides off. The interior is made up of beveled Masonite pieces that are very tightly stapled together.

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
After I got the staples out, it basically lays flat because the masonite is glued on, probably with some sort of spray adhesive.

 

artsy couture canvas deconstruction frame review
I was able to peel off the canvas image from the Masonite panel but it was pretty well adhered, which means that these are not likely to warp over time.

 

artsy couure canvas deconstruction frame review
Here you can see the canvas peeled off and the Masonite pieces I removed from the sides.

 

ure canvas deconstruction frame review
And here is the front of the canvas. The colors here are drastically different from the image I sent in (in their defense they did reprint this order for me), but otherwise I would give the image quality a B+.

My overall recommendation is that Artsy “Couture Canvas” is a good option for budget photographers or for consumers who are not willing to pay literally 3x the price at a pro lab.  I do intend to give them another shot for some personal projects and studio samples, but I do not feel confident fulfilling client orders until I am seeing consistent color.

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Are you looking for a maternity, newborn, family, or baby photographer in Pittsburgh?  Powder Blue Photography offers in-home and studio portraits of newborn babies and maternity and on location family portraits in and around Pittsburgh, including the South Hills, McMurray, Peters Township, Canonsburg, Bridgeville, Upper St. Clair, South Fayette, Mt. Lebanon, Cecil Township, Squirrel Hill, Regent Square, and Shadyside areas.  Please contact Missy to schedule a maternity appointment and a tentative date for your newborn session.  Maternity sessions take place around 33-36 weeks, and newborn sessions take place in the first 10 days of life.  Family sessions take place anytime!

Could this be the Timko 2011 holiday card design??

I love this holiday card, but I have several other favorites as well! I have been spending a lot of time getting adorable designs together for you all : )

My last mini session date for 2011 holiday photo cards is October 23, call me soon if you want to book a time slot for that date.  If you would like cards printed by early December, you will need to have your family or baby portrait done by mid-November, and I only have a handful of sessions open before then.  Call or email me asap… don’t end up sending out a Valentine’s day family portrait card because you never got around to it!  I can also make your card if you have had a portrait session with me in the last few months–please place design orders by Thanksgiving.  missy@powderbluephoto.com

Accordion Mini Album

Do you love showing off your baby’s sweet face as much as I do?

I just got my accordion mini albums from the printer this afternoon!  These things are so stinkin’ adorable.  Of course I used my favorite model so I could order a couple extra books for the grandparents 🙂  But seriously, look at this MOST adorable pocket album:

Perfect for showing off to anyone who will listen–comes with a hard front and back cover and a durable ivory sleeve.  Also sits nicely on a shelf or desk.  I have other designs as well but I love this one with the buttons and stitching.  Almost too cute to handle.

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