24 August 2016

Margarette + Deron | DIY Garden Wedding | Oxon Hill Manor | Maryland (MD) Wedding Photographer

No Rain for This Garden Wedding | Okay, let me start by saying, I have been pretty bad about blogging. But here I go again. I'm making a routine of blogging just like I do with anything else - and I thought about deleting this confession so as to not sound unprofessional or like I don't have my -ish together but I want to look back at this post one day I revel in my growth - anyway, I digress.  So, this gorgeous wedding - let's talk that! [...]

28 July 2016

Photography Journey: Welcome Back Me

Welcome Back Me | Hey, hey! I'm back! I've been MIA for a while - about a year and a half to be exact, planning my wedding, but I'm back.  

Interestingly enough, my photography work seemed to pick up during this time - I mean, I even did a wedding less than one month before my wedding date.  I welcomed it all of course because a) I love photography even when I have major life moments taking place, b) the extra money didn't hurt, c) I don't like passing up great opportunities to meet new people and network for my business. So, I did photo session after photo session while planning my wedding but I spent zero time blogging about it.

So, fast forward. I'm married now.  I've settled in my new space with my new hubby.  Life is great, and I'm ready to get back to business!

Welcome back me! ;)

Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments

11 November 2014

Veterans Day

Heroes | Heroes don't wear capes and tights; They wear dog tags and combat boots.

Wounded, ill and injured service members and veterans from across the U.S. competed against 13 other nations in a adaptive sporting events for wounded warrior athletes at the 2014 Invictus Games held in London on October 2014.

11 September 2013

{babies} Little Isabelle

Ten Little Fingers, Ten Little Toes | This weekend I had the pleasure of shooting the most precious 2 month old, Isabelle.  From the moment I stepped in her parents' home, I knew the shoot was about to be packed full of fun.  With each type of shoot I do, I feel like I'm constantly learning.  There's so much involved with shooting a client that so small but the end result is well worth it.
Remember to catch the little details (Photo: Leanila Baptiste)
1. Props:

Props are important...very important!  Okay, not so much.  If you're into them, cool; get props!  If you're not really an "Anne Geddes" photographer, don't force yourself to be one.  Not every cool baby photographer uses props and costumes, and while they are very cute, so is just a simple shot of a mom holding her baby.  Let's face it, babies are cute without doing much.  Props just add to the cuteness.
When all else fails, shoot the props and costumes (Photo: Leanila Baptiste)
Isabelle was so cute in this tutu for all of the two seconds she allowed me to shoot her in it. (Photo: Leanila Baptiste)
For this shoot, I did use props (because I actually do goo and gaa over the props).  I came through the door loaded with my goodie bag full of props.  However, when I walked through the door, there was the cutest baby in a pink tutu laying on a velvet-textured sofa.  I glanced around the room, and saw a textured coffee table, leather stool, wooden tray, and a basket with a blanket.  There were so many textures, colors and cute costumes, all of which her mom picked out; there was no need for me to pull out my bag of goodies.   So, for those who like props but don't have any, look around the house and you may very well stumble on some gems.  When looking for gems, look for textured pieces, natural fibers, cool patters, and pops of color.

2. Patience:

It's just that simple.  Have patience when shooting babies.  Three things babies are guaranteed to do is eat, sleep, and cry.  Be prepared for stops between shots, and allow for that extra time in between shooting.

3. Set the Mood

I saw online that a photographer uses baby sounds to while shooting to help calm the baby.  So, when we had a restless little model on our hands, I decided to find nature sounds for babies on my iPhone and I placed it near the baby.  And if the baby is wrapped in a blanket, place the music directly under the blanket.  The sound of a heartbeat or running water can be very soothing to a baby, and make the baby feel as if he/she is being held closely to the mother.

3. The Details

When shooting in the baby's home, be sure to capture the details in his or her room. A stuffed animal, toy truck, blanket, or doll; details help tell a story.
Start with these pointers, and remember to have fun.  Everything else should fall into place!

Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments

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12 August 2013

{culture} Define Blackness

"To say something or someone is not Black - or is inauthentically Black - is to sell Blackness short."
- Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness?: What it Means to Be Black Now" by Toure'

Sunday morning reading | Fed Beans the Queen.  Check!  Worked out.  Ouch!  But check!  Morning breakfast with grapefruit, toast, scrambled eggs and two Belgium  waffles.  Okay, okay, no check there! Cereal and hot tea.  Check!  A word from the pastor.  Check! Sunday morning reading.  Check!  So far, so great!

So, I'm re-reading a book (eh-hem, because I didn't finish it) that my boyfriend loaned me many, many moons ago called, Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness, by Toure'.  There are so many quotable lines in this book; things I've thought about, discussed among my peers; etc.  This is just one of many that I'm sharing.  Toure' couldn't have said it better in his book, Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness?, "To say something or someone is not Black - or is in-authentically Black - is to sell Blackness short." 

It's funny.  Historically, and in the present day, we have and still do fight for equality for our race.  Great leaders marched, protested, and even fought so that our "differences" would garner the same respect and fair treatment as the next man.  Yet, within our race, we often contribute to this oppression.  What is Blackness?  How should I speak, how should I act, who should I hang around in order to identify with my Blackness?

Don't get me wrong, self-denial and self-hatred do exist but there is a difference in doing things that fall out of the realm of being "Black" yet still having self-love, acceptance, and identity.  Learn, know, and respect the differences.

Leanila Baptiste Photos
How do you define your blackness? What is acceptable?

There are plenty of moments when I've been involved with or heard a conversation of the challenge to one's blackness.  But what exactly does it mean to be, speak, or act Black?  We (black people) often "sell ourselves short" by placing limitations or definitions on what we think it means to be Black.  We can listen to any genre of music; play any sport, coach or even own the team; sky dive (as Toure' did and speaks about in his book); date outside of the race; and do so much more.  Why limit ourselves when black is cool among all facets of life.  

Don't sell yourself short!

Martial Artist | Baltimore, MD

Fashion in DC has grown to be more diverse within Black culture.

Artist at Broccoli City Earth Day Festival | Washington, DC
Music among Black culture is open to many genres.

We are artists, and it's cool!
We can embrace differences in our Blackness and still embrace our Blackness.
Featured, a woman is shown wearing African-inspired attire.
More African-inspired attire
United, we stand!

Least we forget the fight of our ancestors for equality
Embrace your differences. It's what makes you, you!
Black youth skateboarding | Washington, DC

Janelle Monae', singer known for her elaborate upswept hair, black and white tuxedo style attire, and futuristic vocals. 
Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments

{photography} Web | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Flickr | Blog

{style} Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

07 June 2012

{fuzzies} iPost: Beans the Queen

Hello, hello! I'm posting from my iPhone...kinda cool (to me at least). I'm away from home and my laptop and thinking about photography, and how I'd like to share something new with you. So here we go...photos from my iPhone!

05 June 2012

{style} Brandi Marie

I Got That New New | Okay, that has absolutely nothing to do with this post, but I couldn't resist anyway! I watched movie ATL today and I can't get actress Lauren London's character name, "New New", out of my mind!  Moving on, here's some NEW photography for you! Cheese! 

Model: Brandi Marie | Place: Grafitti Warehouse (GW) in Baltimore, MD | This place is a great location because you can capture and create so many different scenes without traveling to multiple places.  I'll have more scenes from GW in future posts.

Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments

09 May 2012

{music} Shannon Adawn

Meet Shannon AdawnDC Native singer, songwriter with a great sense of style and beautiful voice! 

Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments

03 May 2012

More Shooting Updates

Back at It | "Yeeeaaah!" in my best Lil' Jon voice; by the way whatever happened to him...I digress.  So, today's my second day back to the blog posting world! So proud of myself! Okay, back to the updates...more photos from what I've been up to lately. I've put together pics from a few different shoots and other general photography I've done over the past year! Enjoy!

Leanila Baptiste Photos
capturing colorful moments
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