Reasons I love AND hate Saskatoon.. and stuff I have been up to lately!

So what have I been up to these days? Sitting here bitterly cursing the Saskatoon weather for one. Isn’t this ridiculous?! For all my fans out there who live in India, Mexico, Jamaica I want you to picture this. Snow whipping at your face in -35 below (with the wind), nasty wind so bad its blowing cars off of highways and roads combined with the sheer iciness. Deadly combinations. Not exactly photo session weather either, unless you want phenomena or just to look very red (and really, who wants that?). I met this pretty cool guy in Cuba and I told him that we needed to plug in our cars in the winter time, otherwise sometimes they wouldn’t start. He was blown away! “Where would you plug it in?” he asks. Haha yes, we are one COLD province.  With Days like these, I hate it; I’m not going to lie. Seriously, I question myself all of the time why on earth I still live here. I can never really come up with a good answer. Today I did think of some.

-We have some of the most amazing sunsets and sunrises in the world because of our big wide open prairie skies. Our skies are one of my most favorite things to photograph!

-Yes we are a very flat country, but it has its very own beauty. There is something about being able to see everything for miles ahead of you on the open road.

-We are not close to an ocean so we lose the risk of tsunami which is pretty awesome. I am not going to say we are not at risk for flooding since the run off from this years snow should be interesting!

-We are not close to any mountains so we not at a great risk for earthquakes, volcano’s erupting or anything like that. This is also pretty awesome.

-We are actually known as the sunniest city in Canada here in Saskatoon (It’s true, even when it’s cold, windy and frozen outside the sun will generally be out.)

-We have a great community, with good people and businesses!

I am going to have to remind myself more of these things on days like today when I question why I am still here. The weather is just gross. I am not impressed and I really, really want to do some shoots annnnd other things!

Otherwise I have had a lot on the go. The boys are super busy and obsessed with the Wii. It’s ridiculous! I am getting a gym membership sometime during the week and planning to try out some new recipes. I started a project planner book a couple nights ago and wrote out all of my plans for the year (photography plans, car plans, house plans, décor plans, etc) and ideas I have for shoots and concepts. Sigh… I just LOVE organizing. I just finished watching Call The Midwife (season one) and I am totally in love. I can’t wait for the next season to start. I also love the start of the new season for The Client List…..guilty pleasure…yum!

Image

I just finished up another wedding set and I am working on a couple more! I am excited to put up more shots from the Jamaica Destination wedding! I have been working hard on updating my portfolio and newly designing my website and I am really looking forward to uploading it! I have so many positive things happening for me in the next few months and I have been so happy about all of it. I have a feeling it’s going to be an amazing year!

Okay so here are some of the things that I have been checking out lately!

GUYS: You probably should just skip past this.

Ladies…isn’t this just the most awesome idea? I’m not going to lie, I would consider getting this. Haha it might actually give you something to look forward to around that time of the month.

http://www.leparcel.com/

Also, I have finally discovered Jenna Marbles on YouTube and I am pretty amused by her. I especially like her Drunk Makeup Tutorial… wow.

http://www.youtube.com/user/JennaMarbles

I also have to say I am now crushing on Jeff Gordon after seeing how he drives this car! Mad skills.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YR9UeZKI78

The boys and I made up an awesome little chore chart today which I am pretty enthusiastic about. Hey…less cleaning for me? What’s not to get excited about? Check them out! I found them on an awesome little site called Money Saving Moms

http://moneysavingmom.com/downloads/household-management-forms

Well I picked up my business cards from Pro Print and I LOVE them. I got two new wedding cards made, each with a different photo (one a Destination Wedding and one a local wedding!). I can’t wait to start distributing them and giving them out. I am going to be getting one done for Fashion & Concept work as well and one for general and life photography! Now I need to find a really cool little business card case for them 🙂 Anyone have some suggestions?

I have also been doing a lot of reading lately. I have a gigantic photography book full of projects and tutorials that I am going through and I am also reading “Some Girls – My life In A Harem” by Jillian Lauren… so far it’s been pretty good! I am also excited to start reading the third book by Lauren Destefano “Sever”. Seriously, I really need to make a list of ALL of the great books I have been enjoying these days. There are just too many to even count.

As always I love to dance around my house in the evenings and when I’m cleaning. My latest guilty pleasures in music are the song “Bright Lights” by Gary Clark Jr. and “Do Your Thing” by Jensen Reed… now those are two songs I could put on repeat and be happy about it. I also love the new Macklemore and so thrilled to finally see him on the radio. I am still a loving fan of Bob Marley’s chill style, Buck Cherry and Wax & Herbal T. Really could it get any better?

Cleaning up a storm today and enjoying a cup of Chai tea…. Still wishing I lived somewhere warm and daydreaming my life away.

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend and are staying cozy with someone you love.

Xoxo – Martine

Advertisements

Fun & simple tips on how to take professional looking photos of your pet!

Charles (Dave X Piper kitten)  Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Charles (Dave X Piper kitten) Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Hey guys!

I know it’s been a long time again! I have been ever busy with boys, photos and life. So I know I posted awhile back about sharing some tips on pet photography, and so I wanted to talk about that today!

I LOVE pets.. cats, dogs, horses, love them all! For some of us, they are just like our kids, family members and friends. Of course we want to take some amazing photos of them to remember! Pets can be tricky. They can be wiggly, squirmy and they don’t take direction overly well. Especially cats I have noticed :-D. I have put together a little tutorial for you on some simple and very easy steps to taking a professional looking photo of your pet. I would LOVE it, if you would share some of the images you take with your pet using this tutorial… In fact I might even give away a free pet session to the best one! You can send them to agasteche@yahoo.ca and I will share the top picks on my blog!

I hope you enjoy!

What you will need:

– Poster paper

-Tacks or tape

-Nice blanket or rug

-PATIENCE!

So what I start out with is locating a place in my house that has good natural light. Typically the light shines in through my window onto my couch during the day so I know I want to use my couch area. If the sun is overly bright, I might want to close my curtains or hang a solid white sheet over my window as a filter. I then decide on my color of poster board. Typically I like to try and match the pet’s coloring with the coloring of the poster board in some way. For example, a cat with green eyes, would work well with a dark forest green poster board because it would draw you into the color of the cats eyes. For a solid white cat, you don’t want to use a background that is too dark, and definitely not black because it will end up washing out some of the detail in the cats face and coat. You would want to use a nice vibrant color such as a blue, purple, or pink. Blue typically works best with white. For a solid black cat or dog you want to stay away from using a solid white background as well and use something that compliments their eyes, or highlights. Most black cats tend to have blue, silver or grey highlights naturally so I would try to use one of those colors so that it draws the color into the natural highlights that are there.

Next I take my poster board and tack or tape it to the wall or against whatever I am using as a background. Here you can see I have used a purple blanket over my couch and a pink poster board to take photos of my kitten Winifred.

Set up for pet photo session

Set up for pet photo session

Next, be prepared to have patience. Pets move around a lot, so whether you are shooting with your iPhone, a point and shoot or a pro camera you want to be on your toes! It’s good to have a little assistant who can hold up treats directly behind you or get your pet’s attention. With a simple point and shoot and even some of the professional cameras the “action mode” is still a great choice for a wiggly puppy or kitten.

Set your pet up with the poster board directly behind them and try to get them looking towards the natural light. This will instantly constrict their pupils drawing more vibrancy and color into the eye. Be prepared to keep placing your pet over and over and over again on the same spot and keep them at arms length. This can be tricky! You can also try holding a treat up for them with one hand and shooting with the other or throwing something over your shoulder to get their attention.If you have a smaller puppy or kitten sometimes using a prop like a basket or planter pot will momentarily keep them still while they are trying to figure out what they are doing in the basket to begin with! You can start to incorporate props like flowers, baskets, bowls, etc to add that little something extra to your photo too. Above all remember your patience, because you will need it! Sometimes I have lucked out with pets who will pose willingly for a shot, and sometimes it may take dozens of frames and moving the pet back onto the spot you want them in. Don’t be afraid to keep snapping when you see a yawn, or a weird face, because those are usually the best shots!

In the end you should end up with a fairly decent looking photo of your pet! I hope this was easy for you to follow and I hope you will be able to take some nice photos of your pet to remember forever!

Again I would LOVE to see the results of anyone using these techniques! You can e-mail YOUR pet photos to agasteche@yahoo.ca and I will put them up on my blog!

Love & peace – M

Winfred with the above backdrop

Winfred with the above backdrop

Richard with his two best in Show ribbons

Richard with his two best in Show ribbons

Adding props to your photos will add that extra something and might help to keep your pet still momentarily.

Adding props to your photos will add that extra something and might help to keep your pet still momentarily.

Try to catch your pet mid-play or with a silly expression!

Try to catch your pet mid-play or with a silly expression!

Dave, looking mad as always

Dave, looking mad as always

Here I have used a chair in the background and I find it distracting! Try to find props that compliment your pet, and draws your eye into your pets face.

Here I have used a chair in the background and I find it distracting! Try to find props that compliment your pet, and draws your eye into your pets face.

Here Winifred is standing on a chair which makes her look bigger than she is!

Here Winifred is standing on a chair which makes her look bigger than she is!

I love the contrast here between Winifred, the blue ribbon around her neck, her blue eyes, and the blue background.

I love the contrast here between Winifred, the blue ribbon around her neck, her blue eyes, and the blue background.

 

 

 

Role calls, photo plans, car dreams & interesting sunglass experiment!

Hey guys!

Well my desire to be posting more is seriously being compromised by how busy I have been these days! I have been up to just about everything. I have recently had some fantastic shoots happen, and I have some really exciting concept work coming up as well! Really really pumped to be working with some talented people & friends in the next couple of months.

I have some serious role calls I want to bring to your attention and I will re post most of these on Facebook as well! If you think you fit the description, OR know of someone who does, please send a photo, name, age, height, measurements, and a way to reach you. I want to see what you look like so please…don’t forget to include a photo! Send them to: agasteche@yahoo.ca

ROLE CALLS 2013

I need a male model with long dreadlocks, fit, with or without facial hair age 20-30

I need an East Indian female model slender with long hair between the ages of 10-20

I need a short petite with long red or strawberry blonde hair between the ages of  8-15

I need a female model with about shoulder length blonde or light red hair petite between the ages of 15-25

Okay so those are a few so far, and I will definitely be posting more throughout the year! Thanks for your patience with me getting this up!

Eeek I just feel like so much is happening for me right now! I have some big plans and some exciting things happening soon with publications. It’s really overwhelming and all of the support I have gotten from everyone always astounds me … I am still so in shock sometimes when people like my work, it’s just so crazy! So I guess what I am trying to say is THANK YOU.

Today was a great day. I spent most of my afternoon photographing Treena Wynes author of Eating Myself Crazy and it was really inspiring. Here are a couple shots from that shoot! Definitely check out her page [Eating Myself Crazy] on Facebook!

Author Treena Wynes - Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes – Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes - Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes – Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes - Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes – Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes - Photography by Martine Sansoucy

Author Treena Wynes – Photography by Martine Sansoucy

I`m not going to lie. I`ve been daydreaming a lot these days… about buying a house, traveling the world, terribly inappropriate car dreams, and photo-shoot fantasies. Ahhh I just can`t wait to put some of these dreams into action. If anyone in Saskatoon knows how I can get help with a down payment loan or grant PLEASE send me a message at agasteche@yahoo.ca

I am STILL attending boot camp.. as much as I loath it. It’s getting easier though, and I am happy with that! I am always trying to quit Pepsi.. I swear it’s the worst drug out there. I get such massive headaches, shaky, cranky, etc when I go too long without one. It’s ridiculous. If I quit.. It has to be for good. No more of this one a week rule, because it always gets me hooked again. I’m a sucker for a nice cold Pepsi in the worst way.

What else is new? Well life has just been busy. I am still trying to clear out props, and I can’t believe how many things I have for photo shoots! I need to make some of these shoots happen so I can clear out my basement haha.

I was going through some photos the other night from camping and remembered I was just being silly taking photos of the kids one night. I took different frames. One with sunglasses over my camera lens and one without.. check out the cool effect! I will definitely being trying this again!

Without sunglasses

Without sunglasses

With sunglasses

With sunglasses

Without sunglasses

Without sunglasses

With sunglasses

With sunglasses

What a neat little effect hey? And even easier than Instagram! 😉

Well I am up on a Saturday night doing what I actually really love. Editing, blogging, reading, writing, watching YouTube, listening to the latest Wax & EOM and enjoying life. I am really looking forward to posting some tutorial type things for you all in the near future, but I would also love your suggestions! I have been getting a lot of messages lately on what programs I use and what equipment I use, lighting questions, etc so I am going to be putting together a FAQ page on my website for you all!

I’m really enjoying Saskatoon weather right now. Still lots of snow, but nice outside. Which is very rare. I will not miss our freezing cold temperatures when summer comes, but I must admit I will sort of miss sliding around in the snow when I’m driving haha.

Well everyone, I hope you have a wonderful weekend! xoxo M