Monday, May 24, 2010

Tina and Clyde

Well Tina had a birthday and the portrait below was her gift from a very special friend. Framed in a Four inch cherry frame and 24x30 in size, Tina said "It is one of my most prized possession's, you hit a home run for sure Wilber a Home Run." An eight year old neighbor boy commented "You sure can see that horse loves that lady." I think he is right.

I will be adding more comments to this image as they come in. Just have to tell you a little about the time I spent with Tina and her best friend Clyde. Those of you who have horses in your life know that you don't own them, I think it's the other way around. We just had fun walking around the wild area that Clyde explores every day, taking time to let the relationship happen. Sure we posed some images making sure the ears were at full attention, that he was standing just right and then when Tina saw this image-well she said it was just what she wanted and I'm so glad that we did not rush the session-just let it unfold. Special relationships, special portraits.
Call us and lets see what we can help you with 803-469-2440. I will travel the three state (NC, SC and Ga) to help you, this session was in North Carolina.

I promised you more as it came in and the following is from the lady in the portrait and totally in her own words.

Dear Wilber,

It is hard to know where to begin with this, but let me give it a shot.

About a year ago or so I had a conversation with my best friend about how I would like to have a portrait taken of me and my Arabian, Clyde. My reason for this is because Clyde is 30 years old, not a youngster any more. It wasn't just his age, but of my three horses, Clyde is "The ONE". I wanted a picture that would tell our story. As my husband says," There is no doubt that Clyde loves you." His tremendous sensitivity, intelligence, loyalty have always just taken my breath away.

When us horse lovers describe our relationships with our horses to people that may not have horses, sometimes it is hard for them to comprehend a bond so strong. When you came to visit me and Clyde, I knew it would be difficult to some degree to see our bond; Clyde was just to busy being a horse that day. Anyway, you listened to my tales of love and admiration for my horse and my extreme desire to capture that relationship in print.

To make a very long story shorter......when I received the portrait from my best friend on my 40th birthday, I was absolutely speechless. Stunning, Amazing, Beautiful, so many more words but what made the tears flow from my eyes....... you captured "Our" story. To hear that a little boy looked at the picture and said that the horse sure does look like he loves her. and she looks like she loves him.......that's the story.

Wilber, the photo is are the absolute is one thing to take a photo of an occasion or a person or pet, but you managed to capture something, the more than special relationship ,that I have with my horse

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Little Girls

Wow how the time files and trust me it does and will, there really is no time like the present to have those portraits made - you know the ones you keep putting off. As each day passes it is gone forever...

This beautiful portrait now hangs in the home of her proud parents. When Mom walked in her comment was

" Oh this is Fabulous, it is just what I wanted-I am so pleased."
              "Wilber you are such an artist!"

Needless to say we (I) love it when our clients are pleased to this point with the portraits we have helped to create for them.

The really neat thing about this is that they will enjoy these portraits everyday for the rest of their lives.

Now for the real treat - "Sisters". What a wonderful relationship - "Sisters" and to be able to capture that relationship makes me feel like I have really made the connection with the children. Not everyone can do that, I feel privileged that I can.

We start by having a planning session (takes about 15-20 minutes), this is when we get to meet the people that will be photographed (this step is very important with children - it puts them at ease). To look at the clothing and to get an understanding of what our client's needs and wishes are. Will this be a wall portrait, or a collection of portraits to hang, or images to sit on table or in a bookcase?

This gives us a chance to answer all your questions, as well as ours and to go over all the details about sizes, framing,
selection times, delivery times and pricing.

We want this to be a great experience for both the child, children and the parents.

Right now we are in the middle of our annual "Little Cutie Contest". When we're asked what it is I always tell folks

"Just a good excuse to come have some excellent portraits made of your most excellent Child."

 Please call 803-469-2440 and Margaret will be more than happy to answer all your questions. Plus you have a chance at winning some excellent prizes.

One question we are often asked is "How many poses do you
make during a session. I guess the best answer is too many! I usually don't stop till I am happy with the results we are getting. I always can tell when I have the winning image. So  anywhere from 25 to 45 and sometimes more sometimes less.

What about props - I don't use a lot of props as I want the Child to be the main focus of the portrait, in the same respect I work with simple backgrounds, you won't find giant crayons or Disney characters in the portraits we create. Simple is better and you may have noticed bare feet. There is a wonderful innocence about bare feet, but we will photograph you child in shoes if that is your desire.

Back to props, I usually suggest family items, items that you will not object to looking at for a long time in your home. No need to go buy the latest and greatest toy or doll - that is not what we suggest. You want something that brings about a memory or a feeling. Dirty is good (with in reason) as it looks loved and that is what this is all about. I'm talking about stuffed animals and silky's (not sure if that is a word or not) but I think you know what we mean-like a special little silk blanket, the ones they send home from the hospital.

Tutu's are also a big hit right now and have been for several years. The great thing about them is that they are timeless. White slips or "T" Shirts are also a timeless item.

Something that was a favorite of yours Mom when you were this age is always a winner - that is where the memory comes in, you not only see your baby but you get to do a little reliving of that time in your childhood.

Furniture, chairs, tables, tea sets are all thing that we have at the studio, but you are welcome to bring your own as well. We also have a selection of long pearl necklaces as all little girls love to play dress up. If you have have some fun floppy hats they would make a great prop to work with and are timeless too.

Remember this is a great time to do out door portraits as well.
We also are heading to the beach the first part of June and now would be a great time to get your session on the books. 1-803-469-2440 Margaret will be happy to help you with the appointment details.

How many changes of clothing can we do? This depends on your child, usually the fewer the better as I've found that most children are not crazy about changing many many times. We suggest you bring the outfit that you have your heart set on and then one or two others and we will go with the flow.

Now what do you tell your child prior to the session, we find the less the best. Just going to go have some fun. One thing we strongly suggest is not to prompt your child about their expression. Say Cheese or Smile or Say Popping Peas-are sure to get you a funny not natural smile and make your child look to you for what they are to do next.

BTW the big copy right symbol ©/2010 in the middle of all these images is done only for posting to the Internet and is as much for the protection of our clients as it is for ourselves. I do sign all of my portraits but it is done in a lower corner and is a hallmark of excellence that people have come to look for over the past 40 years.
Thanks for reading and we will post again in the next week, remember 803-469-2440 and we will be happy to see how we can help you.
Wilber and Margaret Jeffcoat.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Business Portraits / Head & Shoulders

I'll bet you didn't know that we have always had a $35.00 head shot session -5-pose session + 1-5x7 color or black and white print, basic retouch (remove blemishes). No this is not put on a CD (reason-Cd's are more valuable-it's like giving you a negative-that should and does cost more ), this is a real color or black and white 5x7 print.

I photograph men, women, groups, etc. You'll look at your images right after we do the session, there is no pressure to buy more than you need-but I will ask-it is part of the process. You can say yes I would love something for my wife and children or my husband and children or they can keep looking at the photos you have in your digital camera that will never be printed (smile-that was an attempt at humor).

But you want a CD (everyone wants one). OK - here's the deal - We will put it on a CD-1 image - add $30.00 = Total is $65 and sales tax. Now keep in mind that is ONE (1) image.

Now before those of you who have come in the past and paid a
higher price, before you get the lunch mob together and come looking for me, remember you got SIX (6) images on your CD and they were sized for the different needs you have, they were color and black and white. That is still one of the best deals going, please do the math.
That is still on the price list and so it is still available.

I will run this through the end of June and if the demand is high enough I may extend it.
call 469-2440 (803) Monday ~ Friday to schedule your session.

These are the facts that you need to keep in mind, sessions are by appointment only (469-2440 -803), retouch is basic-we can do all the digital magic and then some (we have much more experience than your average photographer in town), so we can fix what ever you are not happy with, you will just need to pay for that extra work.

See me on Monday before 10:30 and I will have finished prints in your hands before 5pm on Wednesday. If it is just a CD you want I will have it by the end of that day or by Noon the next day.

Next fact is that this is for a one person session, if there are two people in the same photograph then the price is + $30 (twice the work, art work if needed is also by the person and "may" take longer is some cases).

We are here Monday ~ Friday 9am till 5pm / Saturdays are by appointment only and do require a credit card # and retainer of $150.00 to hold the appointment. Retainer is applied in full  to your order (overages are refunded to your card) or is mine if you choose not to show up and do not cancel 48 hrs in advance. 48 hrs advanced notice and we will be happy to reschedule your appointment. I'm sure you may have other questions so call 469-2440 and Margaret or I will be happy to help you. All photography at this special price is in our studio 1224 Alice Dr. Suite E. Location work is available for an added fee.
Thanks Wilber/Margaret

Second Portrait or Package is HALF price.

For the balance of May we are running our first ever "Second one is 1/2 (half) price sale" .
This is the way it works. You buy your first portrait (11x14) or larger and the second one (same size or smaller) is 1/2 (half) price. This also works for packages for families and for children. Call 469-2440 (803) to set your planning session and portrait appointment.
Sorry we can not combine specials, but you will always get the best service with Jeffcoat Photography.
There are no limits to the number of times you can do this or the number you can order at a single session. Just buy one at regular price (11x14 or larger) and the second one is 1/2 (half) price. Call now 469-2440 and let's see how we can make this work for you.

We know times are tight and we are doing what we can to make this a great time for a family portrait, high school senior, child, new born, maternity, engagement, bridal, pets, beach, in-laws or out-laws. Studio sessions or on location.

Did we do a session last year and you wanted that second portrait (pose you already ordered from) and it just wasn't the right time-well now it is. If it's a different pose-just pay for the art work (retouching) and the portrait is 1/2 price (half). Just call 469-2440 and let's make this work for you. Studio hours are 9am till 5pm Monday through Friday and Saturday by appointment only.
Thanks Wilber and Margaret
469-2440 (803)

Married 43yrs and still going Strong

Happy Anniversary to my Lovely Wife Margaret; for me it was love at first sight. We met at an airshow at Suffolk County Air Force Base, West Hampton, Long Island New York (September 1966). We were married the following May and I shipped out for 13 months is Vietnam that December. I was a flight engineer/rescue tech on the HH-43B Pedro (Helicopter). After a month of survival school in both Washington State and Clark AFB - Phan Rang and CamRhan Bay RV became my homes for the next 12 months.
Margaret was expecting our first child when I left and that June 5th 1968 Deborah Ann came into this world. When I returned state side I was stationed with a group of CH-3's (Jolly Green Giant-Helicopters)and spent the next year stationed at Shaw.
We decided to make Sumter our home, I became a staff photographer at the Sumter Daily Item and worked for two years with Hayward Crowson. August 18th, 1971 Christopher Lee came into this world and our family was complete.
January of 1972 we made the decision to go into business for ourselves and bought Colonial Studios from Harry Salisbury and have been doing photography and framing ever since.
Margaret is the love of my life and the love of the life of our three Grand Grandchildren-they don't even know I'm around (hahaha).
I'm looking forward to the next 43yrs and I think she is too.
So now you know more that you wanted to.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

2010 Cutie Contest ( Expires June 30th)

Wow does the time fly, and it is that time again. Our 2010 Little Cutie contest will run through the end of June (30th).

The way it works is real simple. We photograph your most excellent child (6 months to 6yrs) and then the images are given to 6 (six ) out of state Grandmothers. Each lady is asked to select 5 (five) images that are their favorites, and rate them from #1 (like the most ) through #5 (love it too but not as much as #1). When this is all done (about 4 weeks) we receive the images back, add up to totals and announce the 4 (four ) winners. Yes we are going back to the grandmothers for the judging. We opened this to the public last year and we were asked by the mom's not to do that again. Sometimes change is not so good-sorry.
1st place receives a $200.00 savings bond (in the child's name) and a portrait of the family (20x24-signature finish)
2nd place receives a $100.00 savings bond (in the child's name) and a portrait of the family (16x20-signature finish)
3rd place receives a $75.00 savings bond (in the child's name) and a portrait of the family (11x14-signature finish)
4th place receives a $50.00 savings bond (in the child's name) and a portrait of the family (8x10-signature finish).

We can do the photography in our studio, tons of different backgrounds and props, or you can choose to do the images outdoors. There are several parks in our lovely town and a few special places we keep a secret till the last minute.
So what to wear, well that is totally up to you, we do however make the following suggestions. Bare feet are always a great hit, children love it and the innocence is just what we are trying to express. I know everyone loves color color and more color and that is OK (well sort of) but if you really want to see your most excellent child then we suggest solids that compliment the skin and hair colors. Jeans and khakis are always a good selection and shorts or long pants work equally as well.

This is also good for boys and girls. Mom's the dresses are totally up to you ~ totally. I have better sense than to go there. We have simple as well as formal and a lot of moms are doing the tutus and Margaret and I both think they are just wonderful, I still suggest bare feet even with the formal dresses. We suggest you bring jewelry so you little lady can play dress up and hats are always a big hit for the middle age groups. Some keep them on some do not and we suggest you choose a battle that you can win.
Hair cuts should be a week out from your session date and only the slightest makeup for the little ladies to give them a look of health. If the thought of makeup on your little one is more than you can handle then we suggest you go with your feelings-we are fine either way. Most important for the lasting effect of the portrait is not to try a new hair style as that is something that we can not change and you will be looking at this for a very  long time.

The entry fee for the contest is $30.00 and that includes the 5x7 print for entry into the contest. This 5x7 portrait  is yours to keep and will be returned to you at the end of the contest judging.

Props are up to you and in some cases we have pets come along. Puppies and kittens are always welcome.

Once we are finished with your child's session we will present the images with our digital previewing system, all selections are made in the studio. We can show them at the time of the session ( if you are planning on selecting at the time of your child's session then it would be best to take them home to a sitter or bring one with you as we do not have a baby sitter on staff) or schedule a date  for you to come back and make your selection. We do not make paper proofs and we do not post your poses on line. We feel showing by projecting is the best way for you to see all the possibilities that are available from your portrait session.

We  carry a nice selection of ready made frames and have over 100 different moldings and matting combinations you can select from if you are looking for something truly unique.

I have found over time that it is best if we can meet for a few minutes prior to your session so your child has a chance to become acquainted with us and you can have all your last minute questions answered, we suggest this about a week before the session appointment.  At this time we ask that you pay a $75 retainer to hold you session time (usually $150 but is half for the cutie contest). Full credit for this amount is applied to your order or the difference is refunded.

We would love to schedule a planning session for you so please give Margaret a call (803) 469-2440 and she will be happy to help.

Studio hours are 9am ~ 5pm Monday through Friday and we do have some weekend (Saturday) appointments available. We do not work on Sunday, our Lord rested on that day and I think he was trying to tell us something.

I hear the surf-take a moment and go back to the blog post about out beach portraits. Regular session fee of $200 is now $120 but only for a limited time.

 I will post a few more images to this and I will be posting to this blog with more frequency. We have lots of new ideas and timed price specials to help with this economic down turn

BTW when we do the session - well sometimes we will try real
hard to encourage mom or dad to get into the image with your most excellent child. So don't be shocked if I ask. Now don't let that keep you away, you don't have to get in the image-just wanted to let you know we might ask.

Thank you and we look forward to working with you and your most Excellent Child.
Wilber and Margaret