Authentic Stock Photos | Miami Photographer

Here’s something you might not know about me… In addition to my personal photography projects and work with clients, I sell stock photos. I began working with Offset, a boutique stock photography company, about two years ago and have grown my portfolio to more nearly 500 images. Most of the images I have for sale are of my kids, my daily life or my travels. Sometimes friends model for me or I go out and shoot for a certain concept or idea. It’s been really fun to see which images Offset selects, and which images actually sell.

Here’s a little sample of the stock photos I have for sale…

girl basking in sun on beach, miami, stock photo
girl watering flowers, stock photogirl doodling on placematlittle girl sleepinggirl using electronics in car, stock photogirl having fun at beach, stock photogirl holding planted herbs, stock photogirl baking cookies, stock photogirl on adventure, travel, stock photo

You can view my full portfolio of stock photos on Offset here.

Here are just a few of the images I’ve sold that are now being used in magazines, ads and articles. I also found one of my stocks photo in Parents Magazine, which I came across totally by accident in the waiting room at my daughter’s dentist appointment! It’s really a surprise to see where my stock images will end up.

stock photos Elizabeth Ordonez

I love creating beautiful, authentic stock photos that fit with today’s marketing standards. It’s great to see companies adding real people and real life scenarios into their advertising. Because, really, that’s the world we’re in. What could be real than people doing the stuff they love doing? It’s been such a fun way to channel my photography into other areas and I hope my stock photos help grow the beautiful trend of authenticity in advertising.

Please check out my work for sale if you are interested in my fresh, natural take on stock photos. Or, contact me directly. Follow me on Facebook for modeling opportunities!

Stephanie de Montigny - I love that you take the time to capture your daughter’s life like this. It is definitely something I strive to do when I start my family!

Jackie Kelley - Wow how cool is that taking stock photos, I am sure Miami provides some really great backdrops for the photos. These are really great photos and your kids are adorable!!

Miami Newborn Photos | A Natural In-Home Session

I was so excited to meet this little lady! I did newborn photos for her sister two years ago and I couldn’t wait to see the family again. It is amazing what changes in just two years! Big sis is now a gorgeous little girl and little sis is the sweetest little newborn beauty. Here is big sister’s in-home newborn session, in case you want to compare. I think both newborn cuties were amazing.

Anyway, here she is! Tiny, adorable, newborn baby Isla. She’s all pink and squishy and already owns the hearts of mom, dad and big sister. Welcome to earth little one.

Miami in-home newborn photo session

Monica - I love these Elizabeth! Your newborn sessions look super fun! Can’t wait to have you photograph my family.

Photography Tutorial | Black and White Photography

Black and white photography takes a special vision, great lighting and a good conversion technique (if you’re shooting in color). The absence of color makes other elements stand out even more. You need to be especially aware of tones, highlights and shadow.

There are lots of ways to convert a color image to black and white. One of the quickest ways to do it is in ACR (Adobe Camera Raw) by simply clicking “convert to grayscale” in the HSL/Grayscale tab.

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But chances are that, if all you do is convert to grayscale, your image is going to look muddy and flat, like this:

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Do you see how the above image lacks strong tonal range and has an overall gray appearance instead of a wide variety of black and white highlights and shadows? Stronger light while shooting would have helped, but with a little bit of smart post processing I can make this a better black and white image.

Let’s look at my Black and White Photography Conversion Technique in ACR

Here’s the SOOC (straight out of camera) image without any adjustments.

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As you can see, it needs a few basic adjustments, including a white balance and contrast adjustment. I’ll go ahead and do that first in the “basic” tab. My edits here are not exactly what I’d do for a color image, by the way.

Since I know I’m converting this to black and white, I’m leaving it a bit darker and adding some clarity to bring out the movement and contrast in her hair and dress.

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Next, I’ll click on the tone curve tab and adjust the highlights and shadow to create a little bit more tonal range in the image. I’m basically making the bright areas brighter and the dark areas darker. Make sure to check your histogram so you don’t clip shadows or blow highlights on important areas.

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Then I will open the details tab and reduce the luminance noise. I want this image to look smooth and not noisy. This is a personal preference. Some people like a bit of grain in black and white photography. At times, I do too.

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Next I’ll click on the HSL/grayscale tab and click “convert to grayscale.” This is where you can really see the difference from the first image. Better already, right?

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Although I think this looks pretty decent already, it’s not quite there yet. I’m going to add a few more details to make it better. I want my subject to pop even more.

So, next I’ll add a bit of a vignette by clicking into the Lens Correction tab and moving the lens vignette slider to -10. I just like vignettes. If you add one here, you can play around with the slider until you get the look you want.

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Now I’m going to go back into my Tone Curve tab and click on the “point” tab. I’ll create an S curve for more contrast by clicking two points on the line, one on the shadow side and one on the highlight side. Drag the shadow point down slightly and the highlight point up slightly. Don’t go too crazy with this.

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And here it is the final ACR edit. This is a pretty solid black and white image. There’s good tonal range and contrast to draw our eye to the important details. We have no real need to pull this into Photoshop…

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Except that I always Photoshop! I want to crop this image a bit, add a bit of dodging and burning and add a little glow. I’ll do a ‘how to convert to black and white in Photoshop’ another time, but here’s my final Photoshop edit just so you can see the difference with the subtle extra details.

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Black and white photography is an art that takes practice. By eliminating color, we draw attention to movement, time, texture, light and other elements that create emotion in a photograph.

Knowing how to convert an image to black and white can help you achieve your vision and amplify your voice in photos. As your grow in your work, you’ll probably learn many black and white conversion techniques. This is important in finding your own unique style. Have fun!

Newborn to Toddler | Miami Photographer

Over the last couple of years, I have had the pleasure of being invited back to photograph toddlers that I once photographed as newborns. I cannot tell you what an honor this is! It feels great to be trusted to capture those first moments in photos, but it’s an even bigger compliment to photograph these babies as they grow.

I thought it would be fun to put together a little newborn to toddler “before and after” post. It is so much fun to see how these little people change in just a short amount of time. Some toddlers look just the same as they did as newborns and others look completely different.

As you can see, my newborn photography style has changed a bit over time too!

newborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transitionnewborn to toddler transition

Maybe next I’ll do a sibling newborn photo comparison post. That would be fun, right? What do you think?

Shannon Cairns - Adorable! Wish we still lived in Miami so you could photograph our kiddos! Love your pictures and photography style.

Photography Tutorial | How to Straighten a Photo in ACR

I love straight lines, but I’m a crooked shooter and find myself straightening photos all the time. I sometimes choose to straighten photos in Photoshop, but most often I straighten in ACR because I like to begin editing with a straightened photo.

Here’s a quick tutorial on how to straighten a photo in ACR (Adobe Camera Raw)

Here’s the original photo:

how to straighten a photo in ACR, straighten a photo in Adobe Camera RAW

As you can see, there are strong lines in this photo but they are a bit crooked. I’m going to choose to make the vertical line of the patio door straight because it’s close to the center of the frame and draws the eye. Also, I think that straightening that line will make the horizontal line of the arm of the couch a bit straighter.

First, I’ll select the straighten tool in ACR. I’ll move the tool to a point on the line I want to straighten (I’m using the vertical line of the door frame), click and drag to a point on the opposite side of the line, and release the mouse. Now I have a dotted line along the line I’m going to straighten and there’s a box around my image. The crop tool is now automatically selected, so I can move the box to get the crop I want.

how to straighten a photo in ACR, straighten a photo in Adobe Camera RAW

Then I will hit “enter/return” to crop and straighten and that’s it. Easy peasy.

how to straighten a photo in ACR, straighten a photo in Adobe Camera RAW

That looks pretty good to me, but if it didn’t I’d just re-select the straighten tool, the box would come back and I could re-draw the line where I wanted it. I could also tweak the image again in Photoshop using either the crop tool or the ruler tool. But really, there’s hardly a need to do that when it’s so easy to just straighten the photo in ACR.

Here’s my final edit after straightening in ACR and doing final edits in Photoshop.

how to straighten a photo in ACR, straighten a photo in Adobe Camera RAW