Hey guys! I’m happy to say that I am reopening Starla Photography in Tuscaloosa, Alabama after much needed “time off”.
If you are wondering why I took time off, CLICK HERE to read a blog post from a few months ago. Life has changed in every single way. And I do mean every. single. way.
For those of you who might not know me, let me introduce myself. My name is Starla Holl, owner and photographer of Starla Photography. I’ve been in business for 11 years and believe I have the best job in the world. Photography is my love language. When you want to smile – you look at sweet photos of your family together. When you are feeling nostalgic- you look at photos of your baby’s newborn wrinkles and fuzzy arms and you can almost smell their sweet head. When your loved ones pass away – you cling to those photos so tightly because that and memories are all you have left. And I get to be the person that gives you those photos. Again I say, I love what I do.
Here are a few photos of us by the ever talented Sarah Cornish with My Four Hens in Colorado. She is a phenomenal photographer. I wanted to you be able to meet our family. My son is almost 2 and my husband and I have been married for 7 years. Everything in my life has impacted my photography but these two guys have the most influence. I want to soak in every moment of life with them.
We just moved to Tuscaloosa, AL from Jackson, TN (it’s in between Memphis and Nashville). In case you are wondering, my husband went to the University and we’ve found our way back here. If you read the blog post from a few months ago, you’ll know that he got a job as the Art Director of Events for a great company here. And I did live in TN for 15 years but we are happy to get away from that ugly orange. hahah. (nothing but love to my TN friends). In TN, I had a home studio for newborn photography and senior and wedding consultations. I photographed weddings, seniors, newborns, families, engagements, boudoir, and more. I have photographed over 200 weddings and hundreds of families, seniors, and newborns. I had THE MOST amazing clients there. I miss you guys so much!! Feel free to come down for a photo session! I’ve decided to simplify life in 2017. After much soul searching, I’m reopening Starla Photography with a few changes. I’ve put weddings on hold for a while and I don’t have a studio at this current time to be able to photograph “studio” newborns. I can do newborn/families as lifestyle sessions in your home in the Tuscaloosa area though. I’m going to focus mainly on families for 2017 and I’m very excited about that!! I’m also taking some newborns, maternity, seniors, etc.
Here are some questions you might have:
Q: Why hire a professional photographer?
A: I know you take a million photos on your smart phone and put them on instagram, facebook, twitter, snapchat, etc. Trust me – so do I. Our lives are definitely more photographed now than they ever have been. But we do need more than posed selfies and phone shots. You deserve to have great family photos for your walls, for books, for gifts, and to pass down one day. Please please print those photos. Do you know where your digital photos are from 5 years ago? Does that “DVD” read in your computer? Prints will always work. Print those pictures. Back them up on your computer but PRINT THEM.
Q: Is Starla a good fit for my family?
A: I know you love your family and I want to show that love. Okay… let’s be honest – some days you may be frustrated with them but for your family session, we will have fun- promise. I want to photograph what makes your family fun and memorable. I want to photograph those moments of holding hands, little kisses, tossing your kiddo in the air, exploring, or spinning in circles laughing. I want to photograph you being you. Most of the time you won’t even realize what I’m taking a photo of but it’s all about the small looks and moments. I am not a formal photographer. I’m not a traditional photographer. I do keep things very simple (no themes and cheesy poses). Please look at my example photos so you know what to expect. I am not a fit for everyone and that’s okay!! My style is not everyone’s style – I just need to know that we are all on the same page. I need you to know what to expect from my sessions. There are MANY talented fine art portraits studios with painted canvas backdrops that can provide those services for you. Their work is stunning as well – it’s just a different style. So if you are looking for extremely posed, everyone looking and smiling, every single hair is perfect, straight on angles – I am not your gal – and that’s okay!! You need to hire a photographer that can connect with you and give you lasting images that speak to you. I hope to do that for you.
Q: Why hire Starla Photography?
A: I want you to book me because you love my photography and the emotions that come from my work. I’ve been in business for 11 years and I do believe that means something. Yes, everyone has to start somewhere but there’s also something to be said for someone who is confident in their craft. Trust me – your family won’t scare me off. ha. Wild boys – bring them on. Grouchy dad – no problem. “Don’t show my fat” – I’ve got ya girl.
Q: What can I expect from my session?
A: We will chat before your session so you feel completely comfortable. Your session is up to an hour at the location we decided on. I prefer shooting close to an hour before sunset or so. We will set an exact time and location. You can have 1 outfit. You can bring “accessories” though – like a hat, jacket, a family quilt, your little guy’s favorite stuffed animal. Please – no big props or cheesy accessories. We will talk about it. I’ll photograph your family sitting, standing, walking, talking, laughing, playing. I’ll take a few “looking at the camera and smiling” but then the rest will be all focused on your family – not me! Don’t feel the need to look at the camera or tell the kids to smile. I don’t want “forced family photos”. We will get those smiles out of them but they will be genuine. Or we might get a mad face – and that’s okay too. Keep in mind that any of those emotions are part of it. I’ve learned to embrace all areas of life. If my own child pouts in some photos- well then… that’s the cutest darn pout I’ve ever seen and that’s one more expression that I’ll remember from his childhood forever. Not everything is perfect sunshine and rainbows and not every photo will be perfect and smiling. Some of my favorite photos are those quiet moments when your child lays their head on your chest and you just touch their back.
Q: How much is my session and what do I get for that price?
A: This year I’m doing something totally different. I used to charge a session fee and then you would purchase prints and products. For right now, I’m simplifying life for everyone. There is one flat fee. The package includes your session, editing, an online gallery, digital downloads of all your gallery images, and a print release to mpix.com for printing. I’m currently offering this package for $650. But you have to promise me you WILL print off your images, you will back up your images to two places, and you will never ever print at walgreens, walmart, shutterfly, etc. I will die a little inside. Those places do NOT have paper quality, print quality, color is off, just… don’t spend money on a professional photographer and go with cheap prints. It’s a lifetime investment – print quality. The $650 is for any type of session: families, lifestyle newborns, maternity, senior, etc. I do not have any “mini sessions” scheduled at this time. I’m going to focus on each family personally.
Q: What should we wear for our session?
A: Whatever you feel comfortable in. Maybe that’s a long flowy dress for mom, jeans and a nice tshirt for dad, and the kiddos in various colors, patterns, textures. I think I can more easily do a “what not to wear”. Please don’t wear your “sunday best”. Again – I’m not a formal photographer and your outfits shouldn’t be incredibly formal. There are great photographers for your smocked outfits and jon jons – but I’m a more relaxed photographer. Try to avoid oversized clothes and high collars. I always say to try on your outfits first and make sure everyone feels comfortable in them. I love flowy dresses, fun hats, and layers! Layers of color and texture are great. I’m happy to help you!! Send me pictures of outfits – I’ll let you know if they will photograph well.
Q: What about the weather?
A: Since I do sessions outside, we will reschedule if it’s raining or extremely cold. We won’t reschedule if it’s just cloudy. We do live in the south, so hot and humid is going to happen. That’s why the session is late in the evening and I promise to shoot as fast as needed.
Q: How do I keep from stressing out about my family session?
A: Isn’t that the question?! I think stress will always accompany family photos. Always. Take a deep breath in, and out. Remember, we are not striving for perfection – we are striving for what tells your family story. Please calm down, it will all work out. Don’t yell at the family on the drive to the session. Don’t threaten them within an inch of their lives. Just tell them – we are going to go meet Ms. Starla to take our family pictures. We need to show her respect and listen to her. She promises that it will be fun and it will go by fast.
To those of you who say “maybe next year”… I say this: You are never guaranteed another day. Please get in front of the camera and love on your family. Those “extra ten pounds” that you are worried about right now will turn into “look how skinny I was” when you are old and looking back on these. Your kid’s missing teeth and dad’s thinning hair will only make you smile when you look back on them. Please do this for yourself. Treat yourself to memories.
Q: When do we have a session?
A: I typically shoot an hour before sunset. We will talk about times and locations. I want you to have the best session which means planning the perfect time with lighting on that location. I’ll be taking sessions in the evenings during the week and a few weekends a month! You have LOTS of date options!! I could never do friday or saturday evenings because of weddings but now my schedule is a lot more open to those possibilities.
Q: How do I start?
A: Click HERE to contact me. I’d love to email you and get things started
Don’t take my word for it. Here are a few reviews:
Starla is an incredible photographer! Alabama just got WAYY better! I drove to TN 8 mo pregnant from Texas to have her take my maternity photos… we also drove 12 days after I gave birth for newborn photos…. THAT’S LIKE 9 hours one way. But, she’s the best. I made the mistake of using a different photographer with my first child because I didn’t want to drive and I regret her newborn photos. Once you go STAR you can’t go back!🙂 My WHOLE house is decorated with her pictures of my family. I’m addicted
– Amelia Plumlee
She is the best. No doubt. She is amazingly talented and has the gift of making stressful times not and happy times even better. She won’t let you down.
Starla is amazing! She was truly the baby whiSperer with both of my babies during their newborn sessions, and we had such a fun time at our family photo limited session!! I love how Starla Photography always captures the sweet moments as well as the silly ones! The hardest part is choosing which pieces of her beautiful work to display… We may need a larger home.
LOVE Starla! My girls had an amazing time during our session. She captured all the sweeten of my silly little monsters! I can’t wait to work with Starla again!!!
-Amber LaCole See
Absolutely love Starla’s work!! We love our pictures!!!<3<3<3 She has a great talent for making people relax in front of the camera.<3 And the keepsake box was the icing on the cake!!!