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Creative Photography Gift Certificates For The Holidays

Family photographer and pet photographer Trina Koster captures a fun moment in Meaford, Ontario.This holiday season buy your friends or family something that will bring joy and value to their life with a Trina Koster Photography gift card.

front side of gift certificateback side of gift certificate

Has your mom always wanted a family portrait?  Perhaps your nephew just got a new camera and could use some photography lessons to make the most out of it.

We offer a wide range of services that will bring the joy of photography to someone’s life.

Here are some gift card ideas for this holiday season:

  1. Photography lessons

    Whether you want to give the gift of private lessons or group lessons like the Beginner’s Crash Learn Photo Workshop, learning how to master your camera is truly rewarding for those who enjoy photography.

    Purchase a photography lessons gift card

  2. Portrait photography

    Family portraits, couples portraits, or individual portraits are a creative gift for those you love, giving them new memories that they can cherish for years.

    Purchase a portrait photography gift card

  3. Pet photography

    Pet family photo of a woman holding a large Golden Retriever in a studio.Have a friend or family member with a pet? Giving the gift of a pet photoshoot will provide plenty of happy memories for them to cherish even after their pet is gone.

    Purchase a pet photography gift card

  4. A new headshot

    Many people have outdated pictures of themselves that they use on social media, dating profiles, and business websites. Giving the gift of a unique, professional headshot can be a great confidence booster.

    Purchase a headshot photography gift card

Give a unique gift this year by getting your loved one a TKP giftcard.
To purchase one give us a call at 519-767-2948 or send us an email at trinakoster@gmail.com.

9 Business Headshot Tips to Look Your Best

Professional business headshot tips

Business headshots are a great way to make yourself look more professional in your career. Hiring a headshot photographer to come to your workplace or photograph you in their studio can give you an edge in the business world if the shots are done right.

There are times when people get their headshot done without considering important details of the shoot, such as clothes to wear, makeup, background, hairstyles, and more.

Feel free to see some of our own business headshots here for some ideas on how you’d want to look in your photoshoot.

Continue reading for some useful tips on looking great in your business headshot.

9 Business Headshot Tips To Look Your Best

Wear appropriate clothing

corporate headshot of Jeremiah Tamburrini, real estate agent in Guelph.Think about the look you are trying to convey to people who are going to see your business photo. Do you work at an insurance corporation, veterinary clinic, or are you a Realtor?  Many people dress up for their headshot like they would for a day at the office, but wearing a suit or a nice shirt is common for men who don’t normally wear one at work.

Also, be sure to iron your clothes and look for stains and pet hair before you arrive at the shoot.

If you are planning to get just the top half of your body in the photos then don’t worry too much about about your pants and shoes, but if you want a full body portrait then remember to wear nice shoes as well.

Make your hair look nice

A musician being photographed with her violin by Trina Koster, Guelph.For women, try brushing your hair right before your shoot or bringing a brush with you.  If you want it looking smooth and silky, try using some conditioner in the shower or using a leave-in conditioner the day of the shoot. It is handy to look in a mirror or a selfie camera to see how your hair is sitting right before the shoot starts.

For men, try styling your hair with some gel or putty and even a blow-dryer to give it the look you’re going for. If you have a beard, make sure to shape it with your razor, and consider combing it if it has been growing for a while.

Tell your photographer how you want to convey yourself

Creative photography for album art, done for musician Andrew McPherson.Headshot photographers are experts at bringing out certain looks in people. You may want to portray yourself as “fun and approachable”, “dedicated and serious about success”, “creative and deep-thinking”, or “goofy and unique”.

The possibilities are endless, but if you have a specific demeanor in mind then be sure to talk to your photographer about it. They can set the tone with different music and backgrounds, while using different angles and lenses to portray your custom look.

Going into a shoot without any idea of how you want to look can still result in great images, but it is then up to your photographer to come up with different poses and looks for you to try out.

Don’t worry though, that’s what business headshot photographers do best. If you’ve got a really good photographer they’ll make sure you get some amazing headshot photos regardless of whether you had a certain look in mind or not.

Know your best side

Most people don’t have perfectly symmetrical faces. Perhaps your hair looks better from one angle over another or you have an imperfection on your face that you want to hide.

There are a lot of people who know which side of their face they prefer to take a picture of.

If you don’t know you can try taking a couple of selfies from different angles and find out which you prefer.

Alternatively you could get your photographer to take pictures of you at different facing angles so you have different choices.


Mid-length photo of a fitness trainer in OntarioIt’s not hard to tell when a smile is forced or if you look tense in a photo. People often feel nervous in front of a camera, especially when they don’t get their picture taken often. You have nothing to worry about when getting your photograph taken though.

Headshot photographers are aware that people can feel nervous during photoshoots and they are experienced at helping them feel more calm. To help feel more calm at the shoot, start off with some photos of you doing goofy faces to relax the face muscles.

If you have a certain song that makes you feel confident or relaxed you can request to have the song playing. Once you are warmed up and realize that you have nothing to be nervous about then you can express yourself freely and your shoot will go smoothly!

Consider wearing makeup

Musician headshot of Jesse Bell Smith of Guelph, Ontario

It’s up to you whether you want to wear makeup for your headshot session, but it can help make you look your best for the shoot and minimize the amount of editing that the photographer does afterwards.

Makeup can be useful if you didn’t get much sleep the night before and have bags under your eyes, and also can help with covering small details like crow’s feet or blemishes.

Additionally, makeup can make people feel more confident, which results in better pictures. It’s up to you how you want to convey yourself!

Push your chin up and out

Corporate headshot for BDO Accounting captured in Waterloo, Ontario.To avoid having the double-chin effect in your headshot try pushing your chin just slightly up and forward.

This will elongate your neck and make the skin underneath your jawline tighter, which can eliminate the appearance of a double chin.

You should also roll your shoulders back and stand up straight to improve your posture and appear more confident.

Use the right background

Corporate headshots can be taken indoors or outdoors depending on the look you are going for.  As you can see here, both can look good, but they convey different first impressions.

A business headshot taken in Guelph.

Professional business headshot taken for BDO Accounting in Waterloo, Ontario.

Indoor headshots with white or mono coloured backgrounds are best for the formal business appeal. It looks professional and can be used for business cards or any other promotional material easily.  

Outdoor headshots give a more casual look, but they allow for more creativity and unique portrayals of your personality.


Smiling makes you look more open and inviting and can also show off your facial features better. People like to work with happy, confident professionals so don’t be afraid to show off your smile. 

If you aren’t comfortable with how you teeth look you can still smile with your lips closed. Smiling activates chemicals in your brain that make you feel better, allowing a more positive side of you to shine in the images. 

Some people may choose not to smile in their picture because they want to portray a more serious look. Everyone is different, but in most cases smiling is the best option!

Consider these tips prior to getting your business headshot done and you’ll be much happier with the photos. It’s an opportunity to look your best and have a professional photographer show you off, so make sure to get it done right.

If you liked this article consider checking out 5 Ways To Look More Photogenic In Portraits or 5 Tips On What To Wear For Fall Family Portraits.


Looking for a Business Headshot Photographer in Ontario?

If you live around Southwestern Ontario we invite you to come to our Guelph studio and get some professional pictures taken. We can also travel to your location!

Create a powerful first impression with your headshot  – Contact us today

5 Tips on What to Wear for Fall Family Portraits

Fall photography of a young family at the University of Guelph's Arboretum.

It’s nearly that time again! Time to start off the year with some new family portraits while the leaves of Fall start to show their true colours. Though the season makes a beautiful backdrop, picking the outfits to wear for family photos can be a little stressful.

No worries, these 5 tips should help you get an idea of what to consider when dressing for your special family portrait session this Fall!

Consider your home decor and colour scheme

Before your session, this is something to think about as these images will most likely be displayed on the walls of your home. The tones and decor set the stage for these beautiful images so picking the right outfits to compliment these existing elements will complete the look. If your decor is neutral or calm, choose clothes that are more earthy and with natural tones like browns, reds, greens, deep blues and oranges. If you are working with more bright and fun tones, feel free to bring out the fun in your wardrobe too like a cool hat, funky tie or a great piece of jewelry. The best and easiest inspiration are the walls that surround you, so take note of how your home is situated and what your favourite pieces of furniture are so your decisions won’t feel so overwhelming.

Layering and texture

For family portraits, specifically for the Fall season, it’s important to dress appropriately for the weather – especially if it’s one of the colder months of the season. Though it sounds like a downside to being outside, it gives us more opportunities to shoot with different outfits – the more options we have to work with the more variety you’ll have to choose from. If you’re preparing for a colder day, one family member might wear a nice shirt underneath a sweater or jacket (or both depending on the weather) and a scarf. As you get photos taken, you can remove or add an item to change up the composition while still being dressed properly for the weather. Sweaters, hats, scarfs and different types of pants are examples of some accessories that can add some texture, adding a little more interest to the photograph that also compliments the colour scheme chosen by the family.

Limit patterns

We all love a little fun to throw in a photograph, but if everyone has the same idea then patterns can become pretty distracting. Since there’s so much pattern already in the environment to use for backdrops, texture or contrast, introducing pattern especially in the a Fall portrait session can be a little tricky to blend in if not done tastefully. If you want to incorporate pattern in your photos, it is best to choose one person or one object like a blanket to showcase the pattern while the other family members dress in the solid complimentary colours the pattern possesses. This way, the photograph will be unified by the colours chosen with emphasis on the family, and not on the different patterns used.

Plan ahead

We all have those busy months and if you know that you’re looking to have your family portrait session taken in a particular month or season, it’s best to book in advance! When you book your family portrait ahead of time, not only does it settle any anxiety about whether or not you’ve saved your spot, but it also gives you time to think about the outfits, accessories and colour scheme that would fit the style for your session. Working out the kinks and details beforehand actually means less stress as you start to approach the date of the session so keep that in mind!

When in doubt, go for the classic look

Some families have a certain look in mind and set out to get the photos taken to exact specifications. More often than not families have too many options to choose one final look or don’t really know what qualifies as family portrait attire. With a classic look, you can never go wrong! Classic doesn’t have to be boring, or super fancy. Semi or smart casual options perfectly suit any family portrait as it’s a comfortably stylish wardrobe – and most importantly, provides a timeless look. For this look, avoid shirts with logos or other graphics as this could be a distracting item in the photograph. Something that’s casual enough to be comfortable yet dressy to add a bit more confidence to your look should do the trick – nothing wrong with simplicity!


Well, there you have it!  We hope these 5 tips will be a helpful for those who need some guidance finding the perfect outfit and theme for their Fall family portrait session. Though the season is beautiful, the weather might not always be kind so remember to check the forecast for the day. For more tips see our other blog posts or check out Simple Photo Tips.

If you’re planning on having your family portraits done this Fall, check out our portrait photography page to view rates or contact us at the studio to book your session!

8 Last Minute Wedding Details That Will Transform Your Big Day

dining room at guelph youth music centre wedding venuesYou’ve booked your dream venue, found your wedding rings and your perfect dress is the perfect fit. The catering is under control, you’ve chosen your flowers and you’ve booked a great wedding photographer.

Now that the main aspects of your wedding have been organized, you can breathe a sigh of relief – and start focusing on the smaller wedding details that make a difference.

Would you like to know how to make your wedding unique and unforgettable? Here are some last minute wedding decorations and ideas to make yours the best wedding ever.

1. Pre-ceremony refreshments
Some of your guests will have travelled a long way to be at your wedding, so you could arrange for your caterer to set out homemade lemonade, iced tea and cold water as people start arriving for the ceremony. Your guests will thank you!

2. DIY wedding bar sign
Speaking of drinks, why not give your reception some character with an array of homemade wedding decoration ideas, such as a DIY wedding bar sign? Serve a small selection of your favorite cocktails (or even just two Mr and Mrs cocktails) to personalize your wedding.

3. Lawn games
If you’re planning an outdoor wedding reception, why not scatter some lawn games around the grounds? From croquet to giant Jenga, outdoor games are a great example of how to make a wedding fun for guests. Plus, they make for some truly unique wedding photos!

Newly weds and guests playing croquette on the Langdon Hall green in Cambridge, Ontario.

4. Patterned cocktail napkins
Trade standard white linens for colorful table runners and patterned napkins to make your wedding reception pop! Sometimes simple wedding decoration ideas for a reception are the most effective.

5. Wedding table decorations
For wedding decoration ideas on a budget, handmade place names are a great way to show your guests how much their presence means. You could also leave small pieces of paper on tables for messages and marriage advice. Some guests appreciate having things to do at a wedding reception besides dancing!

6. Restroom amenities
Luxurious hand towels, fresh flowers and a basket of essentials such as spray deodorant, perfume, make-up wipes and mints are a lovely way to make your guests feel like they’re part of the formal event, rather than an afterthought.

7. Dancing shoes
How to have fun at a wedding? Dance the night away of course! Keep a box of flip flops handy at the side of the dance floor so you and your guests can happily bop until midnight. An essential for enjoyable receptions, this should be on your list of wedding details not to forget!

Hanlon Convention Centre detailed wedding shots

8. Late night munchies
To keep your guests energized and on the dance floor, why not arrange for a wedding food truck to arrive towards the end of the night? From burger sliders to donuts, food vans are among the best little touches to add to a wedding to make the day a success!

Now you know some last minute tips for a good wedding, don’t forget to capture as many memories of your big day as possible. Whether you book a wedding photographer or leave Polaroid cameras on the tables, there’s nothing nicer than looking through those must have wedding photos as newlyweds.

5 Interesting Places To Take Photos In Ontario

With summer around the corner I’m sure a lot of you can’t wait to go and enjoy the beautiful outdoors. We’ve put together 5 spots in Ontario for you to go and take some great photos and take in the beautiful scenery.

Scarborough Bluffs

scarborough bluffsThe Scarborough Bluffs are a relaxing and stunning place to take photos. If you want you get a nice view of the beach then head to Bluffers Park.

There are 9 parks in around The Bluffs to explore and take photos at and we recommend seeing them all!

Killarney Provincial Park

Killarney provincial park
© Sergey Pesterev / Wikimedia Commons

Killarney Provincial Park is a vast area of wetlands, forests, and mountains located south of Sudbury, overlooking Georgian Bay.

There are 645 square kilometers of wilderness for you to explore in this park, making for plenty of beautiful scenery and unique photographs to be taken.

It’s perfect for relaxing and doing wild animal photography.

Webster’s Falls

webster falls
© Paul Bica / Flickr

Webster’s Falls is a beautiful location for photos in Hamilton. It is located on the west end of Hamilton in Spencer Gorge Conservation Area.

The area is very popular with tourists, which means if you want to enter it costs a $10 parking fee and $5 admission fee.

There has been a good deal of mention about Webster’s Falls in pop culture because of its beauty. You can read more about that here.

Cheltenham Badlands

Cheltenham Badlands OntarioThe Cheltenham Badlands are a unique formation found in Caledon, Ontario. They were formed due to bad farming practices in the 1930’s, with the reddish colour coming from iron oxide deposits.

The Badlands have been off limits from visitors since 2015 due to issues with overuse and erosion, but the site is set to re-open again this summer!

This is a very interesting attraction and is worth seeing in person.

Algonquin Park

algonquin park ontario

Algonquin park is a national treasure with many amazing sights, including thousands of lakes, maple hills, and rocky ridges.

Its a fantastic place for camping and observing natural wildlife. The beautiful scenery provides countless opportunities for bright, colourful photographs that are perfect for backgrounds on your computer.

If you are looking to get outdoor portraits done this spring or summer, contact us for ideas or to setup a consultation.

Headshots With Noelle

Noelle O'BrienNoelle O’Brien has been a photographer on Trina’s team for 14 years and especially loves doing headshots.

Noelle’s calm presence and warmth puts her clients at ease, allowing for the most expressive and genuine photographs to be made.

Noelle’s take on doing headshots for her clients:

“Being able to creatively work one on one with clients is hugely rewarding.  By chatting with my clients before the shoot, I love to learn about their work, their family, their life and to have that come through in the image.

I make sure that clients feel relaxed and confident so that they can enjoy their session and also get great results. My goal is to produce an image that shows my clients at their best!”

View Noelle’s Headshot Portfolio Below:

View our headshot pricing to see our different packages, or contact us for more information.

To look your best for your photo-shoot, check out our business headshot tips.

27th Annual Guelph Studio Tour

54 preston street guelphThis weekend is the 27th Annual Guelph Studio Tour, beginning today and ending on Sunday the 15th.

Our friend and artist Goldie Sherman is using our studio space at 54 Preston Street to showcase her artwork this weekend.

The studio tour runs Friday: 7-9pm, Saturday: 10-6pm, and Sunday: 11-5pm.

To celebrate the first day of the studio tour, we will be having a cocktail party at 8pm tonight onward.

Goldie Sherman is a very creative artist who works with materials like clay and mixed media to celebrate colour, form, words, and soul.  To learn more about her and see some of her work, visit her artist page.

So come on down to our studio tonight and mingle with others while enjoying artwork and cocktails.

Hope to see some of you there!

Wedding at Kitchener-Waterloo Little Theatre

Wedding at Kitchener-Waterloo Little TheatreThis was a very creative wedding which made it a lot of fun to shoot. Snow and Greg celebrated their wedding at the Kitchener-Waterloo Little Theatre, which is a small and intimate venue with some nice backdrops for photos.

We enjoy this image because it is a candid shot of the moment when confetti fell from the air, with a Van Gogh inspired backdrop.

We admire Snow and Greg because they put a lot of thought into making their wedding creative and fun for their guests.  It provided us with some great opportunities to be artistic and tell a story with the photos.

Jeannine Brady took this photo while working as a second photographer at the wedding. It’s very beneficial having a second wedding photographer because it expands the amount of the wedding story that can be covered.

Being able to view the same moment from different angles allows for a different perspective and different emotions to be conveyed.

To see more of our wedding photos, check out our wedding portfolios.

Langdon Hall Wedding Photography Review

Langdon Hall wedding photography, CambridgeLangdon Hall of Cambridge, Ontario is a stunning place for wedding photography. We’re delighted every time we shoot a wedding there.

Beautiful no matter what season, when you enter through the gate and drive through the pine forest, it doesn’t feel like you’re in Cambridge anymore, it’s almost like you’re in your own world.

To get an idea of the kind of photos you’ll get from a wedding there, check out our Langdon Hall wedding gallery.

Langdon Hall is perfect for small and large weddings.

We’ve photographed weddings with only 4 people (bride, groom and friends) to large parties of 120 people. No matter what the size it always feels very intimate.

As Langdon Hall’s top referred wedding photographers, we’ve had the pleasure of photographing weddings in every season, with each season bringing its own special look to the wedding photos.

There are so many fantastic locations in Langdon Hall to take wedding photos. The Orchard Garden offers a beautiful backdrop for pictures you’ll never forget, and the croquet lawn is great for photographing groups of friends and family.

If you are looking for a wedding photographer experienced in getting amazing wedding photos at Langdon Hall in Cambridge, Ontario, contact Trina Koster.

You can also view our wedding packages for pricing details.

Actor Headshots

Actor headshot of Stephen GraybillIf you are an actor and trying to build a reputation for yourself, having a proper headshot taken is a must.

It can be tough to compete with thousands of other actors in a city when you don’t stand out from the crowd. As an actor, headshots should be an investment in your future, which means you should spend the money to get it done professionally so that your investment pays off.

We’ve been doing actor photography for many years in Guelph, Ontario, which you can see on our headshots page.

Stephen Graybill, pictured here, is one of many actors we’ve photographed at our studio.  He’s starred in the critically acclaimed TV show Big Little Lies with Reese Witherspoon, and also in Law and Order: SVU and The Wire.

When having your headshot taken you need to make sure you look your best so that you can showcase the headshot proudly for years to come. Think about what you want to wear and how you want to portray yourself to the world.  Good headshot photographers will be able to offer their opinion on what looks good for you so be sure to ask them when getting your photoshoot done.

Its generally a good idea to bring a couple of different outfits to a photoshoot so that you have choices on which look you like best afterwards.  For actors it is usually best to dress casual with a nice non-wrinkled shirt. Actor headshots can also be done outside for a unique look.

The point of getting your headshot done is to show off your true personality to the world in an photograph.  That means you should relax and just be yourself. Smile or don’t smile, its up to you, depending on how you want to portray yourself.

If you live in Ontario and want your headshot done, contact our studio to book an appointment at our Guelph studio.

Be sure to review our article 9 business headshots tips to look your best before getting your headshot done!

How Professional Headshots Help You Land Your Dream Job

Professional headshot of a man with glasses in Guelph.Finding a professional headshot photographer can greatly improve your chances of finding your dream job.

The first thing people see when they view your business profile is your headshot. Having a high-quality headshot portrait makes you appear professional and gives employers a strong first impression of you. For reference, see some our professional headshots.

If you work in the entertainment industry then you understand that actor headshots and model headshots are vital for landing a job. Agencies are looking at hundreds of images per day and you need to be able to stand out from the others.

Finding the right actor headshot photographer can take you from being unknown to successful within days.

Take for example this testimonial from Jake, an actor from Ontario, Canada who saw success within a day of posting his new professional headshot by Trina online:

“I had an audition last week for the World Championships of Performing Arts, which is basically like the Olympics but for performance, and the first thing they said to me at my audition was that I had a great headshot. I got an email back from them yesterday, and I was picked to represent Canada in the acting category at the competition! So that means I’ll be going to Hollywood this summer to compete with countries all over the world!”

Jake goes on to say:

“I posted my headshot on a website frequented by agents last night, and I got a phone call less than twelve hours later from an agency asking if I was interested in doing background work with them! So a lot of stuff is happening, and a large part of it is thanks to you”

Employers will form stronger impressions of you once you have a professional headshot to showcase. Trina is experienced in doing headshot photography for various professions, from business and corporate headshots to model and actor headshots.

If you live in the Guelph or Kitchener-Waterloo area, call Trina’s studio and book an appointment for a quick and stress-free headshot session that will benefit you for years to come.

Cookbook Photography

Cookbook commercial photography.Who doesn’t love a homecooked Italian meal?! Here in Guelph we are lucky enough to have Natalina Bombino Campagnolo, a local chef and instructor, specializing in Italian food: http://italiancookingschoolguelph.com/

When Natalina contacted the studio to help her create some images for her new cookbook, we were thrilled!

Noelle O’Brien spent a few hours at Natalina’s cooking school while she whipped up some delicious meals and shared some of her secrets.

We love the fun and candid vibe Noelle captured in the image that Natalina chose for the cover of her cookbook and the intimate photos of her with her family that she chose to use throughout the book.

She certainly has a passion for her what she does, and that comes through in the photos.

Way to go Natalina- we loved working with you!

See more of our commercial photography.

Musician Photography

Creative photography for album art, done for musician Andrew McPherson.At Trina Koster Photography, we have had the pleasure of working with many talented musicians here in our studio. The beauty of two artists working together on a photoshoot, is that it is a very creative experience, which results in unique and expressive images.

The photo above is from a 2016 shoot with Andrew McPherson, a producer, artist and remixer from Guelph, Ontario. Andrew used one of the images from our photoshoot for the cover of his new album ‘Bardo’. We felt this image really captured the moody feel of Andrew’s music.

Musician headshot of Jesse Bell Smith of Guelph, OntarioAlso seen is Jesse Bell Smith, an indie, alternative gospel singer also from Guelph. When photographing Jesse, we placed emphasis on the strong connection between a musician and their instrument.

We can work with musicians to come up with creative ideas for their next album cover or promo material based on your style of music and artistry.

Contact Us for more information.

Pet Photography Tips  – PART 1

Pet Photography in Guelph, Ontario. Pet photography is getting even more popular now that everyone has cameras on their phones. If you love your pet it’s likely that you’ve got tons of pictures of them on your phone. Capturing your pet’s quirky or majestic personality on camera can give you special memories of them to cherish forever.  The common problems when taking photos of your pet are getting their personality to show through and getting clear, well-lit shots of them.

Here are some examples of pet photography that you can reference for the next time you photograph your pet.   Read on to enjoy some pet photography tips and tricks that will help you get the perfect shot.

Pet Photography Tips

  • Help your pet feel relaxed

Pet photography is difficult when your pet isn’t feeling relaxed.  Make sure that you’re feeling relaxed yourself, because animals pick up on energy and can sense when you are feeling anxious or stressed out.  Gently stroke your cat or dog to help them feel calmer if they are moving around a lot and you want to take a still picture.  You can also try taking photos after tiring them out with toys so that they aren’t as hyper.

  • Photograph your pet in good lighting

Getting good lighting is key to capturing the details of your furry friend’s face.  Natural light is the simplest method, but if you are in a room with little natural light try using cool white light bulbs as they are closest to natural light.

  • Keep your pet feeling happy while shooting

The easiest way to do this is usually by giving them treats when they sit still, so they learn over time that being your pet photography model pays off. To get a great shot of your cat, try dangling some string around and watch them become very focused.  For your dog, try holding a treat next to the camera or telling it what a ‘good dog’ it is to get them feeling happy.

  • Focus on the eyes

The eyes are the most expressive part of animals, so make sure to get some closeups.  Capturing them in action while they are playing with their toy or after they’ve made a mess and are feeling guilty can bring out some great expressions in a dog’s face (although cats are better at hiding their feelings).

  • Get on their level

To really get connected to how your pet feels, get down on the floor or in the grass when they are playing. Pet photography is all about bringing out your pet’s personality and being able to see them like another animal would see them.  If your pet sees you at the same height as them, they’ll likely feel more relaxed and connected to you, allowing you to capture them at their best.

Follow these tips to get better photos of your pet. If you live near Guelph, Ontario and want to get some professional photos of your pet, contact Trina Koster.

Top 5 Photos Every Wedding Photographer Should Take

Dancing at a wedding reception, River Run Centre, Guelph.If you are new to wedding photography or are interested in becoming a wedding photographer in the future, you need to know the most important moments to capture.

Although there are way more than five important moments you should capture at the wedding, these are the ones you should focus on the most.  To see some examples of must-have shots, see Trina’s wedding portfolio.

Top Five Photos to Take At A Wedding

  1. Formal Portraits of the Bride, Groom, and Family/Important Guests
    These are a must for the wedding day as they become part of the bride and groom’s family history. Find at least three different areas around the wedding venue to take individual or group portraits so that the family can have options when selecting their favourite wedding shots of the day.
  2. Detail shots of the day:
    Details add an interesting perspective to the storytelling of the celebration. Whether it’s cutting the wedding cake, the type of shoes the bride or groom are wearing, or a shot of the bride’s bouquet with the wedding bands overlapping, these detailed moments will add more diversity and will complement the formal wedding photos taken throughout the day.
  3. Ceremony shots:
    These are the most important shots of the wedding.  You’ll need to make sure you position yourself for the best angle to capture these special moments, as you only get one chance.  It can be very useful to have a secondary photographer to ensure you get every detail and angle of this time on camera. The bride walking down the aisle is a moment where the secondary photographer could take shots of them from the side or from behind while you take shots from the front.
  4. First Kiss:
    Nothing warms the heart up more when you see newlyweds share a kiss for the first time in the presence of their friends and family! For wedding photography, these important moments are the ones that will remembered and cherished the most, especially if these photographs are going to be in a wedding album. The moment of ‘I Do’ is a photo wedding photographers have one shot at, only one time to capture this precious moment – make it count!
  5. Reception Celebration:
    This is where all the celebration begins, and a lot of different events are taking place! Make sure to capture important moments like the newlyweds’ first entrance, first dances, cutting the cake and speeches! This is the time when everyone will be having fun and letting loose, allowing you to capture tons of great candid photos and happy faces.

These tips just scratch the surface of what you need to know to be a successful wedding photographer.  If you live in Guelph or South Western Ontario, contact Trina Koster for a wedding photographer you can count on.

To find vendors for anything wedding related, visit http://www.canadasbridaldirectory.com.

Professional Headshot Tips

business headshot tipsHeadshots are a challenge to get right.  There are many factors that come into play when taking the perfect headshot and it is important that you know what you are doing before deciding to become a professional headshot photographer.

How your headshot looks can have a huge impact on your chance of finding a job, so getting the right photographer for the job is crucial.

For examples of professional headshots, see Trina’s Guelph headshots gallery page. To get some tips on becoming a better headshot photographer, read on.

Tips for a Professional Headshot

  • Get the right equipment for professional headshots

Being a professional headshot photographer is an investment.  The equipment required to take crisp and high-quality indoor studio headshots requires thousands of dollars’ worth of equipment. A camera capable of capturing every detail for a headshot could cost you between $1000 – $7000 depending on the level of quality you’re going for. You’ll also need a proper lighting kit and a backdrop to pull off the perfect headshot.

  • Know what look you are going for

Depending on how you want to portray yourself, different lighting, props, and outfits can be used.  If you are an actor or model, indoor headshots and outdoor headshots can be equally effective in their own way. Studio lighting can make your good features stand out more, and provides even lighting across your whole face.  This is typical for business professionals who want a formal look. Natural light from outdoor headshots gives you a more creative look and can come across as more casual.

  • Find the client’s best side

Nobody really has a perfectly symmetrical face and hairline. When taking a headshot of your client be sure to get them to turn their heads slightly to different angles so you can get an idea of which side of their face should get more exposure to the camera.  Understanding each person’s most attractive angles will allow you to get the most flattering headshot.  You will also have to adjust the lighting according to which parts of the face you want to accentuate the most, and which features you want to conceal.

  • Make the client feel comfortable

If the client isn’t feeling comfortable during your professional headshot session, it is going to show in the photos.  Some people are naturally skilled at getting their photo taken and enjoy the shoot. Many others will feel nervous or uncomfortable with the process of getting a photoshoot done and you must learn how to put these clients at ease.  Engaging the clients in conversation and putting them at ease is a skill that you develop over time when doing professional headshot sessions.

Following these tips will help you to improve headshot photography!  If you live near Guelph, Ontario and need your headshot done or want private lessons in learning how to use you camera better, contact Trina Koster.

Part 2 of professional headshot tips coming soon!