Photographs, quotes, thoughts and trees by Julie Walton Shaver, a lifestyle photographer based in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut


Noodle Boy

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If you’re a blog regular, you might remember this picture from the Japan preview slide show. I took it during one of my family sessions in Japan. Click here if you’d like to see more pictures from that session.

If you’d like to see this family’s slide show, shoot them an email. Or, if you missed the preview slide show from my trip to Japan, click here.

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    This shoot was in their friend’s house, so they brought some toys for their son.

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    I love that ball.

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    When you press down on it, it flattens out, then pops open and flies away!

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    He’s adorable! But I made their slide show in mostly all black and white for a couple of reasons. For one, this picture in black and white turns mom’s pink shirt to a neutral gray, therefore hiding it in this otherwise nice image.

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    For another, because he’s so cute and has such a great smile, I wanted to simplify and minimize distractions in the shots.

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    And, since it wasn’t their home in the background, I wanted to minimize any background information that really wasn’t all that relevant to their lives.

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    They are good friends with my host family though, so I would imagine they’ll love the pictures taken in their friends’ home anyway.

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    He’s so cute! (I have to add that I love dad’s bandaid in this picture. Little dose of photojournalistic reality there.)

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    The original plan was that we were going to go to the park and play, but it turned out to be a yucky rainy day, and windy too…

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    …and they came a long way to meet me here. (I love this picture!) Rescheduling was impossible…

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    …so we made the best of it! Yay!

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    That’s a beautiful mirror.

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    I’m telling you, you have to move fast when photographing children at this age. It’s not as if they stay still looking in a mirror, as it might seem in this picture. In reality, he was moving all over the place and I was just trying desperately to focus. I think I took about 20 mirror shots, most of which were super blurry because my little subject was so curious about his new surroundings.

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    We finally did make it outside for a little walk to Roppongi Hills. In addition to the challenge of rain and wind, mom had a cast on her foot from a little taxi/curb accident and was wearing two different shoes. I wanted to try to hide the fact that her feet didn’t match. That’s generally not the kind of thing you want to hang on your wall, you know?

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    Aha! Detail closeups!

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    Here’s another reason I went for black and white. This is a beautiful shot in black and white…

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    …but check it out in color: the white balance of the image is all over the place from incandescent lighting above his head and to the left, a window light behind, and a large fluorescent directly in front. But it has a nice bokeh and in black and white, there’s a certain pensiveness to his expression that I find compelling. (The black and white version is so much more compelling than the color one!)

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    Mom, dad and I were standing under an overhang and he was checking to see if it was still raining.

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    Oh JOY! It’s still raining! Yay! LOVE this picture!

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    By the time we headed back to our host’s home, it was almost dark. I love this image for the drama of it.

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    Not to be discouraged by a little rain, we found bubbles!

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    But my favorite images from this session, other than the ones of him playing with mom and dad, which I love, had to be the noodles.

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    We worked up quite an appetite that day.

    More Japan pictures coming soon! In the meantime, I love your slide show!
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9 Responses to “Noodle Boy”

  1. Janica says:

    Oh, I love noodle boy!! Precious kiddo and precious family. You caught some amazing moments, Julie. :)

  2. Carolina Girl says:

    Gorgeous photos! What a beautiful family. Love the black & white, but my favorite thing is the way the B&W changes to color at the end of the slide show. Amazing work, Jules! :D

  3. Frank DiMeo says:

    Your work is beautiful Julie!
    Love the layout of your blog too!

  4. These are absolutely wonderful! So, so darling and wonderful!!!! Gosh, I keep on scrolling up and down, to view them again and again. :)

  5. Steve G. says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen you write about so many “issues” at a shoot. Rain, wind, it wasn’t their house, mom’s cast,bandaids. Oh puleeze, Julie. Anybody would be thrilled to have such gorgeous pictures of their family! Love the one of the little boy celebrating the rain.

  6. Beth says:

    Julie, Julie, Julie… Always surprising, you. The B&W was such a super cool artistic touch. Wasn’t expecting it, but it really works to do exactly what you said– it makes you focus on the subjects of the photos without the colorful distractions. LOVE IT!! The little boy has such expressive eyes, and yes, he really is this darling ALL THE TIME!! The slide show song couldn’t be more lovely for them and their family. So thrilled to wake up to this beautiful surprise. They are so going to treasure this.

    • Wow, Beth, you’re FAST! I kept thinking as I was working on that blog post, “Let’s see, in Tokyo it’s 2 a.m… it’s 3 a.m…. it’s 4 a.m… still time to get this blog post up before anybody wakes up. I love your comment! Thank you so much for “getting” the black and white thing. I really love how it turned out!

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