Archive for January, 2011

Guess Who’s 1!?

Besides MY big baby boy ;)

This gal!  Meet Miss Kendall ~

This little peanut holds a SUPER EXTRA SPECIAL place in my heart because her three-month photoshoot was the first time I went to take photos for a family that I didn’t really know.  I met her and her mom at my friend Jeanne Nicole’s baby shower when Miss Kendall was only three weeks old.  My ridiculously huge camera gave away the fact I was starting to do photography, so we got together for her 3, 6 and now 12 month pics.

Her dad has taken an inter-company transfer and they are moving down South.  Waaaah!  I don’t know when I’ll see her again to take her pics but *hopefully*, it will be sometime before she goes to school.  Maybe she’ll have a cute Southern accent by then?  Yes, ma’am that’d be ADORABLE.

Miss Kendall has a super sweet mama who probably has no idea she inspires me (and I’m sure her other friends, too) to be a better SAHM by posting super-cute status updates and blogs about taking her kids on picnics, making baby food, gardening and the funny things her little guy says.  She also makes my job easy by bringing a happy baby, an oh-so-frilly pettiskirt and a cake.  :)

I think she liked the cake…what do you think :)

Hehe!  Thanks sooo much for bringing her out to the studio!  Think of all of us hailing from the QC and Michigan while you’re wearing dresses and skirts in Georgia next week.  Jealous! 


Ann <3

Leave a comment

B.Max is 3 Months Old!

I shall post some pics! 

Baby Max is three months old!  Can I believe it!?  NOOOOO, I cannot.  His mamasita is one of my “sistas” so I really consider him to be my nephew :)  I just love him! 

Saying cliche stuff is totally cool in my book (I’m a mom – it just happens) so here it goes:  I can’t get over how big he’s getting.  Waaaah!  Time is going by so fast!  It won’t be long and I’ll be chasing him around with the camera while he runs away at top speed…sadness….  It really doesn’t seem like that long ago that Heather and I were helping each other plan our weddings of fabulousness.  Now, to celebrate our third anniversaries with our righteous husbands this year, we’ll need bambino sitters.  And we couldn’t be more thrilled about it.  ;)

Behold B.Max:

Baby Max Three Month Photos


My brother-in-law has this talent for buying everyone the perfect gifts.  I am soooo jealous…I swear he thinks of everything!  This year, for Christmas, he gave me suchhhh a great prize (see below) and it worked EL PERFECTO for Max.  What a big guy sitting up by himself:

Our photoshoot wore out the lil Bubs :-(  Hehe…

Thanks, Heather and Mark, for bringing Max out to the farm!  XOXO! 

love & peace, peace & love~


Leave a comment

Several Things

A.  Do you watch Jersey Shore?  I have no issues with admitting how much I LOVVVVVE IT.

B.  I have the CUTEST outfit for Will’s 1 year pics.  CUTEST!!!!  I’ve been waiting for a good snow on a laid-back day to take them.  I went to lunch at my grandma’s this late morning and afternoon…ya know during the perfect once-per-year-big-fat-flakes snowfall.  Will had on his striped pajamas, his totally unmatching Columbia coat (dorky but fits well into the car seat) and socks but no shoes.  As if it could REALLY get any worse at that point (yah…really!), I didn’t have my camera.  HAHA.  Maybe next year.  Oh well, it was worth it.  AND I got to hold my cousin’s newborn baby, VIOLET, for a long time <3

C.  = Swoon.  Every photographer in the world is swooning right now.  I am so glad my getting married days are done.  I would HAVE to have one…unfortunately, the store (=love) sells like $40 ink pens.  I have no idea what a gown would cost. 

D.  I have had such a good catch up week.  I had a super-fun email chat with my former boss (two bosses ago, hello)!  Love her!  Then, last night, I went to dinner @ Lunardi’s (yes, it’s STILL THERE!) with two of my belovedest Deere friends, today I chatted about Excel with one of my old work BFF’s, and tomorrow I’m having lunch with my old department (two departments ago).  This may sound to you like I’m missing working outside of the casa.  No, Kurt, sorry but I’m not (lol). 

E.  I ran out of my favorite mascara so I need to finish some editing and then visit  Waaah…  ;) 



Ann :)

Leave a comment

Lil’ Something for the Photogs (and Brides/Grooms) (and whoever else wants to read)

Omigosh, I am so sorry for the confusion!  :)  I’m soooo still shooting babies, children and families.  LOVE IT.  I can’t imagine ever not doing that type of photography.  I LOVE the babies.  I LOVE the kids.  I LOVE chatting with the parents while we’re trying to get the 2 year old to not get snagged on the barbed wire (anything for a cute pic!  JK (kinda)!).  Seriously, I have a blast.  I have no idea what the parents say as they are driving away from my house but I hope they had a decent time also…? 

ANYWAY!  I’ve babbled on about how I’m breathing new life into the biznazz and focusing on some weddingness.  Maybe some of you are wondering what in the heck I’m talking about…?  I’m referring more to the business side of doing weddings.  Like documentation, advertising and whatnot.  K, so I got the cute logo.  What else?

Re: Weddings.  There is just soooo much more that goes into shooting weddings than kids.  Shooting little kids just comes easily to me; I’m so, so LUCKY and THANKFUL for that because I know other photographers struggle with it.  I really think it’s because A) I’m a mom and B) I’m sooo short (4’11”) so they think I might be around their age.  My child-like voice has nothing to do with it…  ;) 

With kids, though, there’s not that scrolling mental list of MUST HAVE shots that I only get ONE CHANCE to take.  And when shooting kids, I (try to) choose the light.  At weddings, the light chooses ME.  On the flip side, there is just something surreal and immensely rewarding about getting all of those shots and telling the story of such an important day.

Soooo, I’ve been taking a bunch of wedding classes, making lists, plans, reading blogs, etc.  It’s not the SHOOTING I’m taking classes for (got that part DOWN – holla).  I just like hearing perspectives of other wedding photographers and little hints/suggestions of how they go through the day.  I had NO IDEA how crazy it is to be in 7 places at once ALL DAY LONG until I started shooting weddings!!  I have no issues with SPRINTING through the church if I find out Dad has arrived to see the bride.  So it’s nice to hear things like at what point in the day do other photographers take the flower photos, when they do the formal portraits, how many they take, etc.  AND, I love hearing about what information they ask for prior to the wedding day and at the final planning meeting.

Y’all know I like to wing it and just get stuff done…ha.  Fortunately, it usually works out.  I like to pick my battles: I’ll go sleepless for days over a lens purchase but a camera bag, I just roll into a camera store and ask what I should buy…done.  Anyway, so I said, “USUALLY works out!”  HAHAHA.  So, I needed to “whip up” some wedding contracts for 2011.  I thought this would be easy…hello, I’ve signed LOTS of contracts in my life.  OMG, I agonized over these contracts for WEEKS, dude.  WEEKS.  I kept changing my mind, changing the format, changing my mind, changing the format, googling more wedding contracts, searching more forums, changing the font, googling some more.  BLAHBLAHBLAH I’ll get to the point…

My BIGGEST FEAR, seriously?  I would get into an accident, break a leg, get blown away in a tornado, etc and my bride wouldn’t have a photographer on her wedding day.  OM#G.  I would DIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIE.  DIE!

I wanted to my contracts to show my brides that yes, hello, she has THOUGHT ABOUT THIS.  Not just a flippant, “Yahhhh, I’ll be there…so sign here.”  I wanted both of our sides to be covered and show that I thought about all of these things.  Over my dead body (literally) will someone I’m responsible for not have a fab photog on their wedding day.

Guess what, I wasted my time.  In the midst of this, I started a wedding class a couple weeks ago and the photographer showed us his contract he uses, courtesy of Professional Photographers of America.  JOINING THAT ORGANIZATION WAS ALREADY ON MY LIST FOR JANUARY.  So, yes, photogs, it’s slightly expensive but it’s one of the best purchases you’ll ever make…tons of benefits with this organization!  For the contracts alone, I was THRILLED.  They are professional, have been through legal review and very detailed.  And, I feel they cover everyone involved.  Truly everything I’d been trying to say but less girl-ified.   

And yes, thank God, it mentions that if I end up breaking my hip or something (omg), I can and would appoint another qualified photographer to go in my place.  Which, hello, I would do anyway but I think it’s nice to have in there so people know you actually care.  I also joined PP of Iowa, so even though I have some fab photog friends I would ask, I’d also be likely to find an awesome photographer to help me out via PP of Iowa if need be.  :)

So, that’s my photography tip of the day.  Join PPA.  It’s an amazing resource and I still haven’t gone through all of the rockin’ benefits.  Check it out.  I mean, by now you know photography is literally, truly, HONESTLY, the most expensive business and hobby on the face of the planet, so what’s another $350 when you’ve spent $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.  LOL.  And then go spend a little more money and join PP of Iowa.  Somewhere in the Quad Cities, my husband is reading this and shaking his head in agreement(pain) with the “$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.”  Love you, honey.  *smiles sweetly*

Love to all!  xoxo!


Leave a comment

New Logo = Love

So, Santa went back to the North Pole and this little mamasita has been WORKING IT!  It is the YEAR OF RECONCILIATION, I say.  Except I’m only giving myself a couple months to get reconciled and get my lil biznazz Ann-ized.  There were a lot of things I needed to do before I started getting busy to have it be what I wanted and most importantly, to have the experience be reflective of MOI…ya know like Ann-ish and whatnot.  EXCEPT, thanks to my wonderful, awesome, amazing clients, I just…got BUSY!  :)  Thank you thank you thank you!  xoxo!

I’m a lover of all things beautiful…combined with falling down old barns, maybe some old tires, maybe a pile of gravel, possibly a rusty scary-looking gas barrel, no one truly knows what’s going to happen after they get dolled up and come out here.  That’s the way I roll in photos and in real life.  I have no qualms about toting the [one and only] Louis Vuitton I own when it’s covered in gravel dust because I accidentally dropped it in the driveway (oops).  It has more personality that way, yah.  Yeah, I ride in the combine in my True Religions (it’s not like I do real farmwork, I just think it’s cute to ride with the husb <3). 

I’m ready for not only the rockin’ photos but the rockin’ other things that go along with the experience.  I’ve learned SO MUCH about the industry over the past year.  Forever grateful to know where I want to be going and how to get there.  :)  Yah, so I cried when I got my test prints from my new printing house.  GORGEOUS.  Now, I finally know why they cost so damn much.  All photographers reading this are happy that I am finally catching on.  Love you ladies.

Most importantly for this particular post, I have ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS wanted to be a wedding photographer.  Too bad I never just bought a freakin’ camera other than a point and shoot and took some classes!  I could have skipped that whole Corporate America scene!  My whole life, I’d take my lil’ point and shoot and zoom in on the flowers and ribbons on the ends of the pews.  Or I’d take pics of the flower girls’ shoes.  I never knew why, I just did it. 

IT IS THE YEAR OF LOTSA FABULOUS WEDDINGS.  I couldn’t be happier.  XOXO to my 2011 brides.  We’re gonna ROCK. IT. OUT. 

It’s about to get warm and some of the coolest brides and grooms EVER, my camera and I are going to be hittin’ the barns for some engagement sessions.  Hopefully, the grooms are cool with it ;)  Hehe.

amour et paix~

Ann <3



Hola to ALL!  It is NOW that announce my new wordpress blog.  I am excited about it but for some reason can’t decide on any one topic for my first post.  I have started it about 40 times and keep “saving as draft” and starting over.  Hopefully, wordpress doesn’t kick me off for not being able to decide on Post #1. 

WHY THE CHANGE?  I wanted to have a blog to be focused on the business but also still be able to post about miscellaneous topics.  And this is way lame but here’s the deal:  I like the look of wordpress blogs.  So, yah, HERE IT IS…[drumroll]…TAAAAA-DAAAA!  Post #1!  [hears a pin drop]

WELCOME!!  And FYI, I don’t know how to use wordpress yet so I’m just going to wing it ;)  

My plans for the new blog?  So many!  I want to start blogging about photo sessions, my awesome clients, their fabulous weddings, their adorable kids, sharing photography info (not that anyone NEEDS it from me but often people ask me stuff), shopping, animal rescue, being a SAHM/Photographer, living on the farm, obsessing over what lens I should buy next, obsessing over which pair of Rock & Republic jeans to put on my birthday list, obsessing over the rumor that a Sephora is opening in our mall, obsessing over how much I LOVE my life now that I’m not trapped in a cubicle.  You know…those sorts of things. 

love & peace, peace & love~


P.S.  For my blogger readers ~ I am also keeping my blogger blogs so I can continue to post randomness, randomly…  xo ;)

P.P.S.  Follow Ann_Steward on Twitter ;)

P.P.P.S.  OMG, I want to go on vacation.  It’s soooooooooooooooo coooooooooooooooold.  Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!