Pictures of the Studio (and Jasper of course!)

First of all, I want to report that Jasper and I actually had a really nice weekend while Daddy was on his “mancation.”

Jeff grilling venison burgers by headlight. (Image courtesy of Uncle Justin’s facebook feed!)

Despite an annoying episode yesterday when our Realtor texted us that someone was coming to see the house -( which entailed me dropping everything to run home to clean-  and then having them be a no-show) the whole weekend went pretty smoothly.

Saturday I took Jasper to a birthday party for two of his cousins in CT. It’s only an hour away and I thought it would be a nice day for him.  On the drive there I asked Jasper if he was excited to see his cousins and he said yes, and then “But Mommy, I’m shy of them!”

Once we got there, predictably he wouldn’t join in with the other kids playing, insisting instead that I play toys with him inside.  Every once in a while he’d ask me to get a cousin to play with him.. I KNOW he’s only three and he might grow out of his painful shyness, but it still breaks my heart to know that he’s holding himself back from having fun. I guess because I know exactly how he feels I just want it to be different for him :(

He did have fun dressing up like a knight in his older cousin’s garb (warning, crappy iPhone pics ahead!):

Sunday, he got to have a playdate with his “girlfriend” Shelby!  For those of you who don’t remember, Shelby was the one who supposedly threw something at him causing Jasper to denounce their relationship.  Apparently toddlers have very short memories, or maybe absence makes the heart grow fonder (Shelby has since left daycare) because Jasper was VERY excited to see her. Well, not at first because Mr. Shy closed his eyes and wouldn’t get out of the car for 5 minutes but then he warmed up and we had a great time.

We tagged along with Shelby’s family to the pool they belong to which had a little wading pool with it’s own lifeguard, which is the first time I’ve taken Jasper swimming where he could really play without something being with him every second.

Jasper loved putting Shelby’s goggles on..





For those of you wondering if I’ve lost my sanity bringing an expensive camera to a pool, I will share two things:

1) I have equipment insurance through the PPA which I highly recommend. The peace of mind alone is worth the price

2) I ALWAYS use my Tamron 28-75 on these occasions. It’s lighter and much more expendable than my canon but takes images that are pretty much the same quality.  I have people email me a lot asking for lens recommendations and this one (along with a good fast prime) is always on my list. Not only is it a great “starter” lens for those not wanting to invest in L glass yet, but like me, you might find the value in having a high quality “knock around lens” even when you DO own that fancy L glass.

After the pool we went to the studio to meet Chris so we could figure out where to put some of the stuff from his studio and saw the finished floors for the first time..

The landlord had called to warn me that some yellowing had occurred when they put down the polyurethane so the floor looked, in his words, “antiqued”.

I’m not sure if they look antiqued so much as in Chris’ words, “tobacco stained” but I THINK I like them???



They are darker than that in real life, but this is probably what they will look like once I’ve applied some of my usual mid-tone lifting!

Kind of like a light lagoon..

So, now we still have so much to figure out – most importantly window coverings to block out those little hot spots you see.  I really want them to have a nice “floor to ceiling” look, so I think I am going to get the Ikea VIVAN curtains because they come in 118″ length. I just hope they aren’t too sheer! Thankfully, Chris has said he’ll hang the hardware – I think I’m too much of a chicken to be that high on a ladder.

Now all we need to figure out are some other furniture props.  I’d LOVE to score an amazing antique settee or love seat, but those are rare to come by so I’m thinking of maybe getting one of these settees from target. The problem is, the color I like best (peacock) is too close to the studio floor color to have any contrast:

And this green one looks ok, but if it were to be used outside in a field say, the green would lack contrast with the outdoors!

I’ve lately been obsessing over this yellow gerber settee by Skyline furniture.. it’s so sunny and fresh, what do you think?

I’m also kind of digging this zebra one from Powell furniture, it’s pretty cheap too (as far as furniture goes!) at $384:

I ran across this purple velvet sofa that would make an amazing replacement for the one that’s there now from Chris’ old studio.. but it’s close to 1k. Damn.

How cool would that look in front of a drop it modern backdrop??

Hmm, maybe too boudoirish though, which would be odd given that I don’t shoot boudoir! :)

Any opinions or suggestions are welcome!!

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Stephanie says:

Sherean said exactly what I was going to say. :) And I tend to agree with Kelsey – love the yellow print but fear it would be distracting as a portrait background. I love the peacock and the purple! Have you checked out Granted, they have a lot of garbage, but you can often find some gems too and shipping is like $3. Plus, you don’t have to worry about it wearing like iron as it will just be used for portraits and not in your home with preschooler climbing all over it. :)

If you can’t spend a fortune and want something with a modern-ish outline, CB2 and West Elm might have something that would work that isn’t $1000. Speaking of which, is $792 too close to $1000:|Armen%20Living%20LC7252PU%20Centennial%20Purple%20Velvet%20Love%20Seat%20LC7252PU

Here’s another purple number with a pretty shape:


Sherean says:

Can you put a rug under the aqua one? Will provide the contrast you need, let you keep your fave couch. Change out the rugs for different looks, too.

ariana says:

Hartartz, long time no speak!! Thanks for that link.. they are more reasonable on Target, but yes amazon (and even urban outfitters!) has more colors.. still not sure which I like best!

Good point Kelsey..

I like the peacock too.. not sure about the contrast though. Plus I read reviews that it isn’t really a peacock color :)

You think he looks like me? I totally think so too but I thought I was the only one. Check this image out of me as a todder!:

I loved the shape and style of the Target setee – very classic and classy. I’ve saved the link so maybe i can buy one for our home one day!

Kimberly says:

Love the studio… I’m so very excited for you, Ari! I actually love that peacock settee…. hmm.
And… how MUCH does Jasper look like you these days??? Especially in that last shot of him in the swim goggles… your mini-me. :-)

Kelsey says:

I love the yellow floral couch and would put it in my home, BUT I wouldn’t choose it if paying for a photo shoot. I’d instead choose something more timeless. (When I look at the snapshots from my childhood where we’re sitting on a peacock-patterned couch, the very era-specific decor takes the lion’s share of your attention.)

heartartz says:

Loving the tufted setee!
Here it is at Amazon in a whole buncha colors
Have fun!

Nina says:

I like the color a lot! You won’t have to worry about color casts from it. I do agree that the last one looks boudoirish!

Lisa says:

Loving your studio space, I’m so jealous!