New Website now Online and New Look on our Blog!

Hi everyone! 

I’m really excited to let you all know that our brand new website is now up and running! YAY!
This new site will be able to support HD video, which we were not able to do with our old site.

Because we are now offering HD video highlight services along with our Hi-resolution photography, we will be able to share both of these great new technological advances with you via our website.

We also added a new look to our Blog page.  If you haven’t visited our website or our Blog, check them out!  Here’s the info…

Website: http://www.diazdd.com/
Blog: http://www.diazdigitaldiscoveries.blogspot.com/

I would LOVE to hear from you all, so let me know what you think of both the new look on our blog page and our new website.

I’m looking forward to sharing all the beauty I’ll be discovering this year and in the years to come.

And…coming very soon will be our other new website, devoted soley to our Boudoir Photography services.
I’ll keep you posted on that one too!  Thanks for being fans!

Until next time!

5 QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE YOU HIRE A PHOTOGRAPHER.

Hello Blog fans!
Today’s blog is a very important one so I hope you will all not only read it, but share it with your friends.

I read a disturbing article in today’s newspaper and due to the subject matter; it compels me to blog about it.
A (so called) photographer has been arrested for committing multiple crimes to put it mildly! It was later found that this person was only POSING as a professional photographer and not actually a professional photographer.

I’m always very sad when I hear HORROR stories from people about their bad experiences with photographers. One of the first questions that come to mind when I hear these stories is:

Did you ask the photographer the right questions before you hired them?

Many people don’t even know what questions to ask before hiring a photographer, be it for their wedding, portrait, baby pictures or anything else. That’s why on my website you will find a section with F.A.Q’s. Although they are not frequently asked…they should be!

If you want to read those FAQ’s, visit my website: http://www.diazdd.com/ and click on the BIO section. There you will see a list of questions that everyone should be asking before hiring a photographer and our respective answers.

The following questions are also just as important and will help you to distinguish an ACTUAL professional photographer from those who just claim to be…

Before you hire a professional photographer, ask, at the very least, these five questions:

1. Do you have a Business Certificate?
All professional photography businesses should have a current valid business certificate displayed in their studio. ($$)

2. Are you registered with the State/Town/City as a business?
A true business needs to register with the city/town they will be doing business in. ($$)

3. Do you have Business Insurance?
You have the right to request a copy of the Insurance Certificate for the studio you are going to hire. ($$$)

4. Do you have any references?
Any successful photography business will most likely have one or more past clients who have volunteered to be used as a reference. Get the numbers and call if you have any doubts.

5. Are you a member of any professional photography associations?
On a national level there is PPA (Professional Photographers of America) http://www.ppa.com/
Locally we have PPAM (Professional Photographers Association of Massachusetts) http://www.ppam.com/.

Most every state has their own professional photography association, where fellow professional photographers join and help each other learn and grow to maintain a higher level of professionalism and quality. It is not a requirement to join, but within the association, you will find those who are serious about the business of photography.  Even though we may be vying for the same clients, we have camaraderie and want to see each other succeed as well. ($$$)

There are several more questions that could be asked, but these are a few of the important ones. If you are thinking about hiring a photographer for a wedding or any other reason, do your part to make sure that they are truly a business, not just someone with a camera that claims to be. That way, you can avoid horror stories and bad experiences. Anyone can buy an impressive looking digital camera these days, but that doesn’t make them a professional.

One more thing to note would be the old adage which goes: “You get what you pay for”.

If it sounds like an unbelievable bargain…it probably is, so don’t believe it. Fine professional photography is like Fine Wine…It costs more money because it takes a lot of time and effort to achieve and maintain such quality. However, it is well worth the higher cost.  (The dollar signs above indicate that there is a cost involved in obtaining these things.)

Well, I hope this blog entry will help to serve people in the future who are looking to hire a professional photographer for their wedding or special event. If you know someone shopping for a professional photographer, please send them my way.  http://www.diazdd.com/

We will take very good care of them and we have the paperwork to prove it.  🙂

Thanks for listening. Tell your friends!

Until next time.

International Charity Model Search Contest – Family Portraits

It’s not too late to come in for your family portrait sessions before the voting deadline hits!

We will accept entries through April 5, 2010 at midnight. Remember, even if you are entered on April 5th you still have a GREAT chance at becoming a finalist. It only takes some support from your family and friends to get the votes necessary to move into the finals. Voting will continue through April 8, 2010 at midnight Mountain Daylight Time and city finalists can change up until the very last minute.

Hurry in to have your family portrait session and enter this great contest that also help a very good cause.
For more information click on this link:  http://www.sandypucmodels.com/site/c.rwLZKhN1LtH/b.5459895/k.CBA2/Prizes.htm
See you soon!

The Quinceanera Tradition – Sweet 15

Hello Blog fans.

This week I want to share some information with you all about the Quinceañera.  A Hispanic tradition which honors a daughter when she reaches the age of fifteen.  Although you may be familiar with the term, you may not be familiar with what exactly it is and why is it celebrated in (for the most part) such a grandios way.  So here is some information compiled from the web to help explain what it’s all about.

In just a couple of weeks, I will have the honor of photographing another one of these events and I will post some images, so stay tuned.  Subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss it!

What is a quinceañera?

The quinceañera is a traditional celebration of life and gratitude to God on the occasion of the fifteenth birthday of a young Hispanic woman. The ritual emphasizes her passage from childhood to adulthood. The family usually requests a Mass or a blessing to be held in the Church. The rite is frequently celebrated in several countries in the Americas, including Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean. It is frequently requested by Hispanic Catholics in the dioceses of the United States of America.

What is the origin of the quinceañera?

The tribes of Meso-America, possibly the Mayas and Toltecs, celebrated elaborate rites of passage for their young men and women. Rites of passage are known to have existed in the Iberian Peninsula as well. It is believed that he Spanish conquistadores may have brought the practice to Meso-America. It is possible that the missionaries would have approved of this practice, since these rites closely paralleled Christian practices of initiation and marriage. The ancient Mozarabic Rite of the Iberian peninsula had elaborate rituals marking the passage of baptized adolescents, each of which included specific references to Christian initiation and each of which was celebrated following the reception of Holy Communion at Mass. With the suppression of the Mozarabic Rite, many of these rituals passed into popular religious practice.

How is a quinceañera celebrated?

In the presence of family and friends, the young woman (the quinceañera), often accompanied by fifteen young men and women of her choice, (damas y chambelanes), enters the Church in procession, together with her parents and godparents. If she has prepared a reading, she may serve as the lector for at least one of the readings. After the Liturgy of the Word, the quinceañera makes a commitment to God and the Blessed Virgin to live out the rest of her life according to the teachings of Christ and the Church by renewing her Baptismal promises. Then, signs of faith (medal, Bible, rosary, prayer book) which have been blessed  may be given to her. A special blessing of the quinceañera concludes the Liturgy of the Eucharist. After Mass, the young woman is presented to the community. The ritual continues with a dinner and sometimes a dance in her honor.

Who are the participants?

The quinceañera and fifteen young men and women of her choice are joined by members of her family and friends for the celebration. The priest or deacon has a key role as the one who represents the Church and who prays the blessing over the young woman. The local community is also encouraged to gather for the celebration.

May the quinceañera take place without a Mass?

The ritual may be celebrated simply, outside Mass with the young woman, accompanied by her parents and godparents, coming before the priest or deacon to receive a special blessing in the Church. Or, there may be a more elaborate celebration with elegant clothes, flowers, music and decorations and with more than one priest presiding.

Why do parents present their daughter for this celebration?

The parents, in coming to the parish Church seeking the blessing, acknowledge that their daughter has reached the age where she is capable of handling additional responsibility. They see the quince años Mass as a way to thank God for the blessing of their daughter’s life and to seek God’s blessing and guidance as she enters adulthood. The extended family, (grandparents, godparents, aunts, uncles and cousins) is usually present, to celebrate with the quinceañera. Esponsores (sponsors), other couples acting as sponsors, may bring forward the blessed religious articles which are presented to the quinceañera.
 
 
 
 

 
Is the rite just for girls?

According to traditional usage, La Bendición de la Quinceañera has been a celebration only for young Hispanic women. This is the practice in the countries of origin of the young women requesting the blessing. Recently, in the Western and Southwestern parts of the United States a limited number of young Hispanic males have requested this blessing for themselves. There is no basis in the traditional usage, however, for the inclusion of young men in the rite.

The celebration also can be a strengthening of the identity of the quinceañera within her family, as well as an affirmation of the gift of women as a blessing to the Church. In the Hispanic community, traditionally it has been the women who hand on the faith. The abuelita (grandmother) holds a special place in the family for that reason. Women organize feast days, celebrate rituals and offer prayers.  Hispanic women are the evangelizers and teachers of values, yet their leadership has often gone unrecognized. The Quince Años Blessing publicly acknowledges this historic role.
 
So there you have it…a quick look at the Quinceanera tradition and its origin.
I will post more images pretty soon.
 
 
Beauty Discovered.

Our New Website is Coming Soon!

Coming soon, we will be launching a new website for our Boudoir Photography services and our Wedding, Portrait and High School Senior pics too.

We have been very busy the past couple of months with all the new changes we have in store. It’s very exciting and for those of you who will be part of our photographic family this year and in future years, you will enjoy all the great new things we will have to offer in addition to these two new sites.

We liked our current website just fine, but our photography business has grown fast. So, in order to keep the content separate and the volume acceptable, we have decided to launch a second website.

Our existing site will change domain names soon, though we don’t know what to call it yet, but it will be soley for our Boudoir Photography services, which has really grown very fast since we started offering this service a couple of years ago. If any of you have any thoughts or ideas on what you think we should call it, please let us know. We are trying to think of something catchy & classy.

Our new site will be our primary site for weddings, portraits and High School Senior Portraits.
This new site has bigger images, a more user friendly interface, easier to navigate through. We can wait to share it with you all!

We will hopefully be able to launch the site sometime early April…or as soon as we can come up with a name for our Boudoir Site.

Subscribe to this blog (above) and stay tuned for more info on this and all the other new things we are doing.

Until next time…

International Charity Model Search Contest

Time is running out to take advantage of this great offer.
Read on for an extra bonus special!

The International Charity Model Search is not only a great contest with fabulous prizes (including a new car), it is one of the largest fundraisers for the non-profit Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep – a foundation dedicated to providing free portraiture to families suffering the loss of a newborn.

We know how meaningful this gift can be to a family’s healing process and we want to do everything we can to help, so we are introducing a great offer for you to help us help NILMDTS.

For every family you refer to join the ICMS contest at our studio we’ll give you a $100 gift certificate to use anytime in 2010. There is no limit to the number of gift certificates you can receive, so the more families you can reach the more money you can receive!

Hurry! The contest ends very soon!

New Wedding Photo Video Shows for 2010

Hello Blog fans!
I am really excited to tell you about a brand new service we are offering our clients.
We are now adding video highlights to our list of available wedding services to give you the best of both worlds… photo and video combined.
Here is a condensed sample of our new wedding photo/video shows. The full length shows are approx 30 minutes long, completely customized and include images, music & audio as well.
Book your wedding with us and ask about this brand new, really cool service!
More shows coming soon. Subscribe to this blog so you won’t miss one!
Enjoy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8foKRDMoOA