2017 Editor’s Featured
A Little Bit About Us
Salwach Photography is the premier South Jersey newborn, child and family photographer specializing in natural light portraits serving all of South Jersey and parts of the Philly region. We capture moments that will last forever including babies’ milestone packages and children’s first birthday cake smashes. We are an on location photographer based out of Sicklerville, NJ serving South Jersey residents.
I do not just capture pictures, but special moments that are frozen in time and will be something you will look back on forever. They are timeless photos that will always have a special place in your heart.
Its not just about taking your photo, but giving you an amazing experience. From the very beginning to the end, you will feel like you are in the right hands. One of my 6 year old clients held my hand after her photo shoot and told me “You are the funnest person to ever take my picture” If that doesn’t sum up how you can expect your experience to be, I’m not sure what can.
I make it my mission to have your photo be worth a thousand words and give you an unforgettable experience…
Owner and Photographer
If your child is anything like my two year old then taking photos of them is hard, just plain hard! They don’t to stay still, they don’t want to smile, they just don’t want to do absolutely anything, but the opposite of what you are asking them to do. You would probably think since I’m a South Jersey child photographer that I have an easier time, nope, mine is just as resistant to photos as yours! There are some great tricks and tips though that I incorporate when taking her photos that I want to share with you so that you can take great pictures of your children too!
1.Slide to the left, slide to the right!
Have you ever wondered why when you move your picture around in Instagram there are those horizontal and vertical lines? You want to place your most important part of your photo on these lines. When you look at a photo you would think that your eyes automatically go straight to the middle of the photo! Nope, not at all! If you cut your photo into three equal pieces, your eyes are first drawn to one of those cut marks. If you have a gorgeous close up of your child, placing your child’s face on one of those lines makes your picture more visually appealing. So give it a try and take some photos of your child placed on the right or left side of the frame.
2. Make it a Game!
The more fun your child is having, the less they will think about that you have a camera pointed at their face and will just think you are playing a game! One of my daughters favorite games is peek-a-boo and hide and seek. This is my number one go to for her cooperation. I will ask her to go hide and then take a photo when I find her. These photos are the closest to my heart because I know many years from now I will be able to look back at these and get a glimpse into her personality at this age. Not only is she having a blast, but all those smiles are genuine and not cheesy at all! In her Easter portrait below, I asked her hide behind the flowers and then peek out when I counted to five.
3. Bait and Switch! Aka Have a ROAR-some time!
This tip is great with the younger boys, but also works well for any child. Tell your child, you are going to need them to take some monster photos and need them to roar really loudly. Do this for a few minutes with them and then say, “You know what, lets try a smile one this time and then we can roar some more.” This is totally a compromise, but you will be surprised how much you will love these roar photos too! If the child feels in control of the photos, they seem to be more willing to give you a little of what you want too.
4. Cover that Sticker with your Butt!
Sometimes you just need your little one to sit still for a whole minute so you can get your camera to focus! If you have a young child, the sit on the sticker trick is great. Say something along the lines of “I bet you can’t cover that sticker with your butt.” This most likely wont work for long, so make sure your camera is poised and you are on that clicker button!
I hope that these tips will help you take awesome photography with your South Jersey child. Please leave a comment if they helped you and maybe let me know which helped you the most. As always, thanks for reading!
Owner and Photographer
What should I expect during my session?
- This is going to be an amazing experience and cake smashes are one of my favorite sessions! For reasonable expectations though, don’t be upset or shocked if your one year old does not agree. There is a lot going on for the little one and they may not be nearly as enthusiastic as we are. First off, we are asking for them to stick their hands in their cake and make a complete mess. On a daily basis, most likely we try to keep them as clean as possible and not throw their food. They may be a little confused at first, but we have some great tricks to get this going. We may help the child along by smearing some icing on their mouth or sticking their hand in the cake. They still may not be into it, but as the saying goes, its their birthday they can cry if they want to and you will have these awesome bribery photos for when they are older!
- During a normal session there are 3 different parts. The first is your child all beautiful in their birthday clothes. The second part is the smash! The final part is the clean up and bath tub. If you are not interested in the last we can of course time our session a little differently and use more time towards the first two parts of the session.
- Clean up is always a fun experience! Sometimes parents are encouraged to get in with their child to get the process started. I suggest for parents to wear clothing they do not mind getting some icing on and also to bring a change of clothing in case. Also, bring plenty of towels and wipes!
Let’s talk cake! Do you provide the cake for the smash, how big should the cake be and etc?
- No, due to allergies, I always have the parents bring the cake. I will be more than happy to refer you to a South Jersey local bakery in the area that provide excellent cakes. If your child has not tried cake previously, I always suggest to do a trial run to test for allergies before your session.
- Normally, I suggest either a 4 inch or 6 inch cake. Though we may make a complete mess, usually the child doesn’t actually eat a lot of the cake so these sizes are perfect for the smash.
- Bright icing colors are great for smashes! I suggest staying away from browns and red icing as they do not look amazing smashed (think horrifying thoughts)
What should I bring for the session?
- Parents should bring the outfit(s) (up to 2 outfit changes are allowed), balloons if desired, towels for messes, possibly wipes and of course the little birthday girl/boy.
Let’s talk about your cake smash session today!
Owner and Photographer
Did you know that one of my favorite parts of children’s photography is making the props for my little customers? In almost every session, you can see one thing I’ve made. Sometimes props are made specifically for your unique session. I put so much love into my sessions that goes well beyond taking the photo and processing to making props and planning your unique session with you.
In the session to the left that I photographed last year in South Jersey, it was Addy’s first birthday and her mom requested to have her little girl become a princess for a day and wanted her colors to be pink and gold. The crown in the below picture was made completely by me to match her outfit and theme. The crown is stiffened lace with a gold and white roped accent and a beige flower. This gives it a unique vintage feel that I absolutely love incorporating into my photography. Mom was absolutely thrilled with the customization of her session and the detail that went into it.
Another of my favorite handmade props below, was this beautiful and timeless flower head piece that Avery wore during the 8 month old session. With her coloring, I just knew this pink flower creation would look amazing on her and really pop. This prop also gives a bit of a vintage over all feel to the photo. If you haven’t caught on yet, I’m a bit of a sucker for vintage. I just like to hint at a vintage feel to give my photos a timeless look while still being fresh and contemporary.
Mostly all of the decor in the cake smashes are handmade as well. In previous NJ sessions that I’ve blogged, you can also see I’ve made those pretty tissue paper pom poms, banners and gorgeous pin wheels. This love and attention to detail all goes towards customizing your session and making my goal of enjoying every moment of your photography experience.
If you have a prop you’ve seen used in my photos that you are interested in, please let me know and I can see if we could use it for your session. Or do you have a completely different prop in mind, let’s talk and we can see if it can either be made or bought. A great photo session always starts with amazing ideas and collaboration. Let chat about what your vision for a session is and we can work together to make it come true.
Owner and Photographer
Bella, Bella Bella! Not only is this girl gorgeous, but she is such an amazing person! I think her name translating to beautiful is truly accurate. I am glad to say I know her. She braved the cold and rocked the beautiful! By the way, when I say cold I mean 30 degree weather, but you can’t tell at all.
She breezed through her South Jersey photo shoot modeling 3 amazing gowns provided by Dee at Shooting Stars Photography. We both had such a blast taking photos of her. Being primarily a children’s photographer, most of my sessions include the little ones so its great sometimes to get to photograph someone a little older and can give some posing direction.
I really enjoy coming across new challenges that allow me to stretch my metaphorical photography muscles. I always feel like each new challenge makes me a better photographer! If I always just did the same things over and over, not only would I be boring, but I would never learn any more than I know right now. Behind the scenes even when I’m not taking portraits, I am constantly looking at ways to expand my knowledge and learn more. Photography is such a great field because its constantly changing and something you can never get bored of. Each person is so unique and special that each shoot is an entirely different experience.
Over the last few months I have learned so much! I went from photographing only my own child to photographing others. In the last few months, I have second shot at a wedding and will be the primary wedding photographer in May. I am so excited to be growing at such a rapid rate and feel proud that I have accomplished so much in just a few short months. I want to let others know that if you have a goal you can succeed. I want my daughter to grow up knowing she can be anything she wants to be. Will it come easy? Definitely not! Succeeding in something does not come without its struggles or its pain. Succeeding is pushing past the rough times and plowing ahead to make yourself better. Growth and success does not come without its growing pains. When I start to feel as if I am leading into territory that I am nervous or fearful about, I know I am on the right track!
Owner and Photographer
Melina’s cake smash is probably one of my top sessions to date! What an adorable little girl! She was all smiles from the beginning to the end with her family rooting her on and singing her counting songs while wishing her a happy first birthday. It truly was a party with the Spanish music that just made you want to get up and dance and she thought so too breaking out adorable smiles. She wasn’t so sure about the cake but did dip in a finger or two and in one of the pictures you can see her trying to take a bite right out of the top. Her favorite part of this cake smash was by far the bath tub pictures at the end. She sure did make a splash and had no problem getting the floor completely soaked, giggling the entire time!
I know Melina’s mom is going to absolutely adore these photos! We kept sneaking peeks at the back of the camera through out the session and we loved every photo! When I first talked to Melina’s mom, she told me right off the bat how excited she was to get these photos taken. She had already had 3 beautiful boys, but wanted a little girl to complete her amazing family. I just had to joke that poor little Melina would never get a date until she was at least 30 with three older brothers and of course her protective father.
We decided on the theme together to match her bedroom decor. I had been toying with the idea of making these pin wheels and when I showed a sample to Mom, she was in whole-hearted agreement that we needed these for the session. This session took place at her home in South Jersey in the middle of her living room with natural light streaming through the two windows. I feel parents have a much easier time getting ready for the session when they take place in their own home. Right after the session as I was breaking down my set-up, Mom brought Melina up to get a proper bath and put her to nap. See easy-peasy for both parents and baby. I am an on location photographer and I travel to you within a 30 mile radius of Sicklerville, NJ. Beyond that there is a small travel fee.
I can’t wait to take Melina’s portraits again! Contact me to schedule your South Jersey portraits.
Owner and Photographer
Salwach Photography is owned by South Jersey raised Samantha, usually referred to as Sam. I am mother to the world’s most beautiful little girl. She is the one who inspires me everyday to make the most out of life. She is also the one who made me push myself to finally follow my dreams and become a photographer. I wish I had a really unique story of why I became a photographer, but its pretty standard.
Years before I seriously considered becoming a photographer, I would stare at newborn and wedding photos and just soak up every detail loving these images. I worked in Human Resources at a staffing company in Philly at the time and decided to stay home when my wonderful husband and I had our first born. I just could not get enough of photographing each little detail of her tiny toes and hands and wanted to take amazing pictures like the ones I always saw online. From there I got my first DSLR when she was around one and went to work following her around like the dedicated mom-erottzi I was.
I am so glad that I decided to become a family photographer as it was a dream I guess I always had, but never really though of as something I could obtain. The safe route always seemed like the easier path and starting my own business was scary. I will always thank my little Brooke Lynn for constantly making and continually making myself into the person I want her to look up to which includes following your dreams and knowing nothing is too big to accomplished.
Photo Credit- Shooting Star Photography
South Jersey newborn photographer, family photographer, child and children’s photographer including first birthday smash cake photographer. We offer our services in all of South Jersey and NJ including but not limited to, Gloucester Township- Blackwood, Glendora, Erial, Sicklerville, Blenheim, Lambs Terrace, Chews Landing, Hilltop, Sewell, Washington Township and Turnersville. In Camden Township- Haddonfield, Berlin, Clementon, Pine Hill, Magnolia, Cherry Hill, Voorhees Township, Bellmawr, Atco, Lawnside, Gibbsboro, Collingswood, Winslow, Runnemede, Audubon, Lindenwold, Vineland, Mount Ephraim. In Burlington Township- Burlington, Moorestown, Pemberton, Bordentown, Evesham, Delanco, Mount Holly, Shamong, Tabernacle, Medford, Maple Shade, Edgewater, Mount Laurel, and Cinnaminson. We also of course serve the Jersey Shore areas including Cape May, Wildwood and Ocean City!
Give us a shout and let’s make your dream come true!!