chantal stone photography: the blog

April 10, 2008

On Vacation!

Filed under: internet,News,Personal,Photographers/Artists — chantal @ 12:37 pm

I’m on vacation all of this week with my family, and we have limited internet access. We’re visiting my husband’s parents in Warner Robins, GA. It’s been such a wonderful, peaceful, relaxing time so far. The weather has been great, since it’s still early Spring, the unbearable Georgia heat has yet to kick in; and we’re just enjoying the reprieve from the cold Ohio winter.

In addition to Warner Robins, we’re also going to visit my brother in Atlanta and my husband’s grandmother and cousins in Savannah. Of course I’m taking plenty of pictures, many for my SoFoBoMo project… so stay tuned for those when I get back home next week!

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April 2, 2008

Mid-Week Round-up vol. 7: SoFoBoMo & Cool Links

Filed under: internet,News,Photographers/Artists,SoFoBoMo,Weddings — chantal @ 10:13 am

1) My SoFoBoMo project officially began yesterday. But I haven’t really started shooting anything because yesterday was just a regular Tuesday with me spending the majority of my day driving back and forth, picking kids up, dropping kids off, drinking too much coffee, and not getting anything done. And since the main subject is my family spending time together, it would probably be better if we were actually all together. That didn’t happen until after 9pm, at which time my nerves were completely gone and I just made everyone go to bed. The best photo-op of the night was around 11pm when the house was quiet. My camera was the furthest thing from my mind.

2) Are you Bride who wants the coutour Wedding gown, but you only have the David’s Bridal Budget? You soooo need to check out Encore Bridal. Get gently used designer gowns at a fraction of the original price. And a portion of all profits got to charity!

3) One of my favorite photographers… Nissou*. Do yourself a huge favor and check out her work. Better yet, take a peak at her photoblog. She’s a Belgian photographer and she inspires me like no other. Her work is delicate, intimate, and feminine. She has the unique ability to capture a moment and make you feel like you were there in it. Amazing!

4) I love great writing. I love movies and TV shows with intelligent and quick dialog, I love books and magazines that massage my brain with eloquently placed words and phrases. Which is why I LOVE this article written by playwrite and screenwriter Jon Robin Baitz, on the Huffington Post: Not Until The Fat Lady Sings. Politics aside, it’s just a well written piece. And yeah, it helps that I agree with it.

5) I photographed a really fun couple’s engagement pictures over the weekend.  I will be posting them here very soon, but my 5 yr old just informed me that I’m a “mean mommy” because I won’t get off the computer and lay on the couch and cuddle with her.  Yes she’s spoiled, but then again, so am I for being able to just stop what I’m doing to indulge her.  So bye for now…I’ve got some cuddling to do and cartoons to watch.  Pictures to follow soon!

March 26, 2008

Mid-Week Round-Up vol.6

Filed under: internet,News,Personal,Photography — chantal @ 12:35 am

1) Come play Geek with me! So, I’m usually way behind when it comes to getting on board with the next new thing, or new technology. I resisted getting the internet, I resisted buying a dvd player, I was even the last person I know to get a cell phone. (All three things I could NOT live without, btw) So it’s no surprise that I’m late to the whole MySpace/facebook/online networking thing. And I still do not totally see the point of any of it. When I get a new MySpace message I always wonder why couldn’t the person just send me a regular email? But there’s more….there’s Bebo, Plaxo, Spokeo and Lord only knows what else. And yes, you can find me on all of them. Every time I get an invite I do not hesitate to sign up. I always ask myself whats the point? But I do it anyway….happily. And then I obey, and pass the invite right along to the 998 other people in my address book, just like a good little internet soldier.

In comes my newest little fascination: Twitter. As if email and blogging aren’t enough to keep the world informed of the inanities of my life, I can easily text msg updates on what I’m doing right from my phone to Twitter! So the next time I’m bored in the school parking lot waiting for my one of my kids, or if I’m at the grocery store and I see a really awesome sale on organic chicken breast, or if I’m just too lazy to write a normal blog post but I still feel the need to tell the world exactly what’s on my mind at any given moment, I can just Twitter! The internet is the greatest invention. Ever!

So all of it’s kinda silly, and I’m pretty sure I’m almost too old to be bothered with any of it, HOWEVER….should you feel the need to connect with me on a much deeper level, you may find me at my favorite various internet hot spots, below:

FACEBOOK
TWITTER
MYSPACE

2) RENT-A-BAG? Now they have thought of everything. Do you ever find yourself drooling over that $8,000 Prada purse or the $10,000 Chanel tote that you know you can’t afford? Well now you can….with Bag Borrow or Steal. It’s a new service where instead of buying the designer bag or jewelry, you can RENT it on a weekly basis. It’s still too rich for my blood, but if you have $150 a week to blow on a Fendi clutch then go for it! Me? I’m going to Target (pronounced Tar-zhay, for the uninformed)

3) My four favorite actors right now are:

Kiera Knightly (Pride & Prejudice, Atonement, Silk) – She was BORN to play Elizabeth Bennett, and should rightly play any romantic heroin, forever.

James McAvoy (The Last King of Scotland, Atonement, Penelope) – kinda new to the movie scene, but I’m sure he’ll be around for a long time….totally brilliant in Last King of Scotland.

**NOTE: Kiera Knightly and James McAvoy need to star in every romantic film from now until the end of movie-making-time. The End.

Will Smith (too many weird alien movies, Six Degrees of Separation, The Pursuit of Happiness, I Am Legend) – Nobody can just cold-cry like this dude can, he’s a WAY better actor than I think even HE knows.

Mark Wahlberg (Boogie Nights, The Departed, We Own The Night) – He says the F word better than anyone in Hollywood, 2nd only to Joe Pesci, MAYBE. I’d love to see a movie with Mark Wahlberg, Will Smith and maybe throw in Matt Damon for good measure. Yeah, that would be a good one. Someone needs to get started on that soon.

4) A Letter. Dear Winter, You are now officially done. It’s over. We get it, you’re cold, you make lots of snow. And you make ice too. I missed you back in December. I wanted a white Christmas, but you were no where to be found. So I sadly got over it, and as soon as my heart began to mend with the hope of a new, greener love, you show up. So we had a few laughs, sled down a couple of hills. Big Deal. It is now time for you to pack it up and hit the road. I’m over you. I’m now in love with Spring. Under no circumstances are you allowed to show your frigid face around here this weekend! I am anxious to begin a series of very awesome engagement photo shoots and you WILL NOT RUIN IT FOR ME. Come early in December this year. Heck, you can show up in November and I’ll welcome you with open arms. But for now, Sayonara!

With Love, Chantal

5) Chris Matthews is AWESOME! You HAVE to watch this…the WHOLE thing:

Found via Think On These Things.

6) Fun Photo Shoot Today! Since I’m a photographer, and this is actually a photography blog, tomorrow I just might post a few pictures from a fun photo shoot I am doing today with some kids (a few of them are even my own!)

Stay Tuned!

March 18, 2008

Mid-Week Round-Up vol.5

Filed under: Books,For Photographers,Good Reading,internet,Photography,SoFoBoMo — chantal @ 9:15 am

1) Cool Websites… If you spend more than 5 minutes a day on the Internet, then chances are you’ve already heard of StuffWhitePeopleLike.org. It’s a blog-phenomenon only a few months old. It’s funny, satirical, stereotypical, and irreverent… and if you don’t know it, come out from under your rock and check it out. But even more significant might be all of the stuff-people-like spin-offs that have grown from this popular website. It seems every demographic has felt the need to create their own lists of stuff they like. Sadly though, many seem to lack the dark humor that makes the original work. And yet, these blogs/lists seem to be popular among their own stereotypical group. A few you might want to take a peak at are StuffEducatedBlackPeopleLike, StuffCollegePeopleLike, StuffGhettoPeopleLike, and my personal favorite spin-off that’s relatively new but has lots of potential to be perfect: StuffGayGuysLike.

One note– if you scroll through the comments on these websites, you’ll notice how some people get angry and leave negative comments; some people are clearly offended. But it’s important to remember that these lists are supposed to be funny. If we can’t laugh at ourselves, than what?

2) Don’t Make This Mistake… I was browsing a photography message board (or something, I can’t even remember what site it was) the other day and someone made a post asking for lighting advice because he/she was asked to photograph a friend’s wedding but he/she had no clue how to handle the lighting. The first thing that popped in my mind was: why on earth would this person accept the job if he/she didn’t know what to do? I can understand a Bride looking to save a few bucks because Weddings are just so expensive. But really, there are so many areas to save money, the photography is one area where you don’t want to go thrifty. A Wedding is one of the most important days in new family’s life. And after the ceremony, after the food is eaten and the flowers are wilted… years later when you’re browsing your albums with your children, the only thing left are your pictures. Do you really want to leave these important memories to someone who’s photographic education is a one or two time post to a message board? This may not be true for every area of your Wedding planning, but when it comes to Wedding photography, you really do get what you pay for: Hire A Professional.

However… if you must let your cousin or uncle or friend —who just got a new DSLR for Christmas and now they want to be a professional photographer— actually shoot your wedding, then make sure they read this website: How To Shoot A Wedding. It’s a great article, written by wedding photographer Anthony Hands, that covers everything from making sure the wedding couple knows your experience level, to written agreements, to knowing the basic functions of your camera.

Wedding photography is fun, but it’s a skill and an art, and certainly not as easy as it looks.

3) Easter already? Is it me, or is March going by way too fast??

4) Photographer looking for a project? April is almost here, and that’s the month to start your SoFoBoMo project. What is it? It’s Solo Photo Book Month… a project where photographers will photograph and put together a solo book in a month. Paul Butzi started it all and discusses the project in length on his website, including a SoFoBoMo Q&A. And I think a SoFoBoMo-dedicated website is in the works. Colin Jago has a running list of participants on his blog.

The project is supposed to be made in a 30-day time period, during either April or May, depending on the photographer’s schedule. I’m bending the rules just a bit, and beginning my project on March 29th and ending on April 29th. (I’ll be discussing what my project is about in a later post.)

5) I can’t wait for Spring!! I’m tired of crappy weather…last week it was snow, this week it’s rain, and I even heard flurries in the forecast for tomorrow. UGH! I shot this sunrise in Chicago last Spring… I can’t wait for the warm Sun to make its appearance again…

042920070164_edited-2.jpg

**please note that in about 4 months, I’ll be complaining about the heat and saying how I can’t wait for Fall. I seriously need to live where it ranges from 6070° with an appropriate balance of sun and clouds.

6) What I’m Reading… There are a few books I’m reading right now. I try to limit my reading to one book at a time, but these are all great, and different from each other, and I can’t put them down:

Atonement, by Ian McEwan – It’s a crime that I haven’t seen the movie yet. But it comes out on DVD today and I’m going to Blockbuster this afternoon. However, I’m still going to read the book, since Ian McEwan is one of my favorite authors…his writing is like a total brain massage. So rich, so descriptive, I love all of his books.

The Assault on Reason, by Al Gore – I’ve said it before, I’m a political junkie…more specifically, I’m a presidential polotics junkie, and this a great book on the philosophy of Reason for the modern age. It helps to clarify how much of what goes on in Washington right now simply does NOT make sense.

A New Earth, by Eckhart Tole – You see people everywhere reading this book right now. It’s an Oprah book, and it’s great. I’m only at the beginning, but it’s all about reawakening and altering your thinking to change your life for the better.

February 6, 2008

Mid-Week Round-Up vol.2, featuring Barack Obama

Filed under: Inspiration,internet,Make A Difference,Music,News,Personal — chantal @ 10:06 am

(the 2nd installment of random things I come across…)

1) Most of you have probably seen this by now, but if you haven’t, take a moment to watch. Even the biggest skeptic can’t walk away from this without feeling inspired. I love what creative minds can do…

Barack Obama – Yes We Can music video

2) Fish Lips Paper Designs. This is so cool….gift wrap with beautiful and unique designs made from 100% Post-Consumer recycled paper. (found via Anna Kuperberg’s blog)

giftwrap.jpg

3) DIY Bride. This is GREAT resource for Brides who are planning their own wedding and want everything to be FABULOUS! Get creative, often inexpensive ideas on DIY Bride. There’s a forum that you’ll need to register for, but it’s FREE.

4) Jack Johnson – Sleep Through The Static – It released yesterday, and from what I’ve heard so far it’s AWESOME. It usually takes a while for a new album to grow on me, but I’m a big JJ fan, and this one definitely delivers.

jj.jpg

5) BABIES!! It’s official, I have baby fever. With my last two photo shoots being all about the babies, I can’t help it! And no, I’m not going to go for #4 of my own, I want to shoot YOUR baby. So if you or anyone you know has a BABY give me a call or send me an email… I’m offering a limited time special package for BABY PHOTO SESSIONS. (email chantal@chantalstonephotography.com for details)

6) Avoid “The McWedding”. For Brides on a budget, this article is a MUST READ….in fact, the whole blog is awesome!

courtesy: Cocktails and Details, The Wedding Planners’ Fabuluxe Blog

February 1, 2008

Mid-Week Round-Up

Filed under: Good Reading,internet,Nonsensical/Randomness,Weddings — chantal @ 12:17 pm

I’m definitely an internet geek. I love the internet…LOVE it. I could easily live without television, phone, even my cell phone. But a day without internet access is like TORTURE. And what’s not to love? Anything you need, you can find online. And I’m always surfing around, browsing different websites, wedding-related, and not. So once a week I’m going to try to post a handful of things I find online that I think my readers will enjoy. I’m calling it the “Mid-Week Round-Up”, but don’t be surprised if you see it on a weekend….or a Friday 😉

So here we go…

1) Nervous about that speech you’re forced to give? Here’s a site that will help you to write a Wedding speech… whether you’re the Groom, the Best Man, Maid of Honor, whatever! Of course you have to pay for the service, but if you’re stuck for words, it just might help– who knows!

Wedding Speech 4 U

2) The Nest!! Do you not know what this is?? All I can say is: I LOVE IT!! SO many of my clients are from The Nest, it’s not even funny. And thanks to the message boards and member profiles, I get TONS of Nestie hits! To the un-informed… the Nest rocks, quite frankly. From the website: “The Nest […] started out as an online community of girls grappling with the emotional issues–and enormous to-do list–that couples face in the first few years of marriage. [It] is a 24-7 virtual married-best-friend who’s been there before.” Where, oh where was The Nest when I first got married?!? (Haha that was like 100 yrs ago 😉 )

3) Instyle Weddings. The current issue of Instyle Weddings is currently out. I’m a wedding magazine junky and read several different ones. They all are great and are loaded with tons of awesome ideas for brides. But this particular issue of Instyle Weddings has some really cute ideas for place cards that I think you might like (page 237). There are also some tips on hiring a Wedding photographer (pg 249). (ONne tip they left out: HIRE CHANTAL STONE 🙂 )A lot of you’ve seen before or probably already know, but most importantly, the final thing they list is “Consider Chemistry”. The article points out that you spend more time with your photographer than any other vendor (with the exception of your planner most of the time) so it’s really important to have great chemistry with your photographer. Fortunately I have fallen in LOVE with all of the couples I have photographed! It’s mush better to have a great photographer you “click” with (no pun intended) than someone who offers the cheapest package.

Another reason I live this magazine issue…. Elisabeth Röhm is on the cover, and I’m a closet Law & Order addict!

4) DOOCE! Have you not seen this website yet? Dooce is the title of the blog by Heather Armstrong. It’s funny, it’s crazy, it’s heart warming, and most importantly is FUNNY! Just go read it, you’ll see what I mean….read the last few posts. She talks about her daughter, her crazy dogs, her life. She even gets serious and talks about her issues with postpartum depression ….but it’s always in a well-written, humorous way. Go read it now. GO!

I have more to share, but my daughter is begging me to watch Sesame Street with her, so I gotta go. More to come next week 🙂

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