Downtown Eau Claire Family Photography | Becker/Stephens Family

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Casey is a friend of my husband’s and has been his insurance guy for awhile. When I first met him a year or so ago we were sitting around our kitchen table talking and he kept mentioning his wife, Deb. After a little while it finally clicked – Deb. Deborah. Deborah Becker from State Farm Insurance. I said ‘wait is your wife Deborah Becker?!’. If you live in Eau Claire there it is almost impossible to not know or have heard of Deborah Becker. I was a little giddy – she’s kind of a local celebrity! A few months ago they asked me to do their family photos and I was thrilled! Deb likes choosing different themes for her family photo shoots and this time she wanted them to be very bright and colorful. With their adorably colorful outfits we hit their office for a few photos and then headed out around the corner to a little area that overlooks the Chippewa River.

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Images taken on nikon f100 and kodak portra 400 film. For more of my work please visit my website Katie Leona Photography.

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Eau Claire Rod & Gun Park | Borgen Family Photos

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I love sessions at the Eau Claire Rod & Gun Park! The little waterfall, the steps by the river, the bridges are all perfect settings for photos. I met the Borgen family there a few Sundays ago to take some family photos. These adorable kiddos were excellent at saying ‘cheese!’ and had fun moving from one spot to another.

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Schultz’s Country Barn Wedding | Sara + Justin

03920001Well what we thought for sure was going to be a rain-filled wedding day ended up being a wonderfully sunny, warm May day! Schultz’s Country Barn in Eleva, WI is a fabulous setting for a wedding with random, adorable decor (see car above!) and perfect country decorations in the reception area. Sara and Justin had intended on having the wedding outside but due to what we all thought was probable rain, they held the ceremony inside. The staff was able to quickly convert the ceremony set-up to reception area. Sara and Justin had the perfect combination of simple, country decor – and had a guest list ready for a good time! Thank you again for allowing me to be a part of your relaxed, laid-back, very fun wedding!

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images taken on nikon f100 and kodak portra 400 film

Experimenting with Portra 160

When I first started out with film I tried a few different film types. But I found Kodak Portra 400 and fell in love and rarely used anything else. Recently my local lab only had Portra 160, a film type I have steered clear of mostly because of the slow film speed and need for a lot of light. But I though I should at least give it a shot so I knew what it was like to work with.

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And I must say – I was quite impressed! Even though I was outside shooting, I was pleasantly surprised with how bright the images turned out. (I did rate the film at about 100 as opposed to 160 also). The look feels a tad more saturated than Portra 400, but for outdoor shots I think it works really well. So these are some images from my little test roll of Portra 160. Enjoy!

02770035 02770034 02770032 02770031 02770030 02770027 02770024 02770020All images captured on a Nikon f100 and Kodak Portra 160. For more of my work please visit my website, Katie Leona Photography.

Shower for Baby Boy Schultz

My sisters and sister-in-laws threw me and our little guy a beautiful shower at Hi-Way Harry’s in Johnson Creek, WI a few weekends ago. It was a special shower because both the Smith side and Schultz side were there! It was so nice to see everyone, the food was delicious and the decorations were adorable. While I let my sister be in charge of most photography I of course couldn’t resist a few film shots.

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Images taken on a Bronica ETRS with Kodak Portra 800 film. For more of my work please visit my website Katie Leona Photography.

Noah | Family Photos

I’ve known Noah’s Dad for just about 15 years! Mark was one of the first people I met as a freshman at UWEC and became one of my very good friends. We’ve kept in touch over the years but this past weekend was the first time I’ve seen him and his beautiful wife, Andrea, in quite a few years. And the first time I got to meet their ADORABLE little boy Noah.

It was a very chilly Sunday morning so we had our session at Davies Center on the UWEC campus – which was fitting given our history!

I recently got a Nikon f100 with 85mm/1.8D AF lens. I’ve ran through a couple rolls of personal work but this was the first time I tried it out at a session. So in love with these film scans of little Noah! Review of the Nikon f100 to come..

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Images taken on Nikon f100 and Bronica ETRS and Kodak Portra 400 film. For more of my work please visit my website, Katie Leona Photography.

Book Review – Supercharge Your Profits Learn to Shoot Film

As I’ve mentioned before (and will likely mention again and again) I very much enjoy researching, reading about and viewing other film photographers work. Instagram has become a great place to find like-minded individuals and it was through Instagram that I discovered Charlie Kingland-Barrow and her work.

The Instagram post talked about a second book she was coming out with me…which made me immediately hunt down the first. I found her ebook, Supercharge Your Profits Learn To Shoot Film available for download on her website. To be quite honest, ebooks make me a little nervous – like you never quite know what you might get for your money. But she provided a free 27 page preview of the book which I quickly downloaded. I only read a few pages into it when I knew I would want to purchase the whole thing!

I won’t go into great detail about the contents (you should go buy it!) but will say that there was a theme throughout that stuck with me. If you are interested in film and have done any tiny bit of research on it, you have likely heard the names Jose Villa and Elizabeth Messina. You also might have found that the most common equipment of choice is a Contax 645 and Fuji Pro400h film. While Charlie acknowledges and salutes their suberb qualities, she also stresses the importance of being yourself. Just because you use Jose’s camera and film and lab does NOT mean you will produce work like is. And while is it undeniably beautiful work, why would you want to? Aren’t we as artists constantly trying to find ourselves, our voice, our artistic approach?

Charlie recognizes that and mentions more than once the need for each photographer to find what works for them. She provides examples of other beautiful work not shot on a Contax 645. This gave me a nice little boost of confidence.

When I first decided I wanted to incorporate film into my portrait and wedding photography, not just my personal work, I was hesitant because the film camera I had been using was a Bronica ETRS. And while for me it worked wonderfully and provided results I loved, it wasn’t the ‘norm’ for film wedding photographers. So I definitely had hesitation in using it. While I eventually did, I still wondered if I should be saving my money for the Contax. But Charlie’s book reminded me of my decision to be unique. Besides my absolute love of everything to do with film, one reason I wanted to incorporate it into my work was because of the uniqueness it offered my brand. Nobody in my area uses film. And I appreciated the acknowledgement through Charlie’s book that it was ok to be different, it was ok to use the medium of your choice, it was ok to be the artist and photographer YOU want to be.

The ebook provides a ton of useful information and I would highly recommend it for anyone interested in shooting film, particularly incorporating it into your business workflow. I will definitely be purchasing her second book!

For more about me and my work, check out my website, Katie Leona Photography.

-Katie

Schleusner Family Photos

The Schleusner Family, Anthony, Jodi, Emily, Jacob and Ali, heard about me through one of my wonderful clients, the Hartzel family! I love referrals 🙂

We met over at Banbury Place in Eau Claire where we had a beautiful day, although a tad windy! I’ve been to Banbury numerous times but hadn’t quite explored it all yet. The last photo was an alley we found that had some very cool brick backgrounds! Although that is where the wind really picked up! They were such a sweet family to work with!

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~Katie