Photo Marathon 2013 :: SPRING! :: Hamilton, Ontario

The first Marathon of 2013 was over the weekend and it was great for a few reasons:

1-the weather was perfect!  Not too hot, not chilly, not wet….just right.

2-we shot it at the new outdoor studio: our farm!

3-no one got lost and missed their session!

4-there was great variety from session to session–young families, older families, extended families and just the girls :)

5-everyone did SUCH a great job on their wardrobe!   It makes a HUGE difference and you all looked fabu!

6-very, very little crying.   It’s true–I hardly cried.

7-a smaller group!  Instead of 9 or 10 sessions in one day I settled on six and it was so refreshing.

Ok, I could go on and on–but the point is, the Spring Marathon was a great success.  A HUGE thank you to my faithful assistant who made a special reprise just for this session–Rita!    And thanks to my husband for dropping EV-REY-THING to help me prep our property and locations for the sessions.  And finally, thanks to all the new and old friends who booked a session and made such an effort to look swell and arrive early–you made the day fun and easy!

Private galleries should be ready soon–I’ll email you when they’re ready and we can schedule a time in-studio or online for you.


2013-marathon-claire-dam-1ps. Amy I PROMISE there are a bunch of great family shots, but I couldn’t resist posting these two of the boys :)


We had two session with ‘just the girls’ which is always a lot of fun for everyone–typically lots of awkward giggling and really close contact.   I can’t wait for the day I had an all-guys group ;)


You might recognize these cuties from the Fall 2012 Marathon.  This time they brought more family!

2013-marathon-claire-dam-5Another just-the-girls session–can you guess who the star of the show is?

*Special thanks to Aimee for doing such a gorgeous job on Katie’s make-up!   Which you can’t see in b&w…oops.  Trust me…it looked awesome.

2013-marathon-claire-dam-6These kids…I mean, come on.   They can’t stop being so CUTE!

2013-marathon-claire-dam-4Last session of the day–but no lack of energy and affection<3

And please leave a comment if you like what you see…Thank you!


Baby Brighton | Hamilton Newborn Photographer | Hamilton, ON


Katie and James are one of my newer Bump-to-Babe clients and we’ve had SO much fun with all their sessions.   I can’t encourage all of you out there enough to trust your professional to do their job and they will surprise you!  (And this applies to most tradespeople and professionals.)   Putting restrictions on & trying to control creative professionals will stifle them and bore you with the results.   So do yourself a favour and collaborate with your creative professional–you’ll be so happy with the products–I promise!

Anyway–all that to say, Katie and James encouraged me to do my thang and also brought a lot of great concepts forward and together we’ve brought them to life!    You should check out their very popular maternity session here.  It was so well-received that it was featured on a couple different baby blogs in Canada and the US!

Little Brighton came pretty early–about 3 weeks–so things were a little bumpy for the first week or so, but by the time we shot this lovely newborn session at Katie & James’ house she was doing awesome and was SUCH a great little model!

DSC_3823-EditaadiptycDSC_3939-EditaadiptychDSC_3964-EditDSC_4044-EditDSC_4032-EditaadiptDSC_3963-Edit DSC_3973-Edit DSC_3956-Editaadipty

After some family pics and pics with Mom and Dad we got her to sleep and she stayed asleep–it was awesome!    She was so cooperative to get posed and moved around and have things put on her head and moved around–she was totally conked out!



DSC_4416-Edit DSC_4386-Edit-2-Edit DSC_4411-Edit

The day before this session I’d been doing some reading on newborn photography and in that article the author mentioned that babies almost always smile during newborn sessions, but you just need to be ready for it.   In retrospect of all the newborn sessions I’ve done I realized she was RIGHT!   I just wasn’t ever expecting it–when I should be.  So once we got Brighton in this position we waited….and waited…and before long we got a sweet little smile.   But not before an awesome frown.   That girl can frown!


If you remember the maternity session you’ll remember the above little birch-bark crown I had made—we included it in the shots in the bookstore and outside on the bed.      And if you’ll also recall, we did a number of shots in the bookstore–a special pastime for Katie & James.   So to finish we hung out in Brighton’s room reading books and snuggling.   (I say ‘we’ but I didn’t snuggle.  Although that would have been nice…)     Finally, please note the pic of their cat–this guy….just blows me away.  I’m not a ‘cat-person’ per se, but, wow.   Right?



Congratulations Katie & James!   Look what you made!  She’s lovely.


If you like what you see–check out some of my other posts too!   But more importantly please leave a comment to let me know you liked it!

Sometimes I feel like I’m in an empty auditorium.   Sniff…

The Summer Photo Marathon! Hamilton Family Photography :: Hamilton, Ontario

Back in the cooler days of June I hosted the first bi-annual (possibly even tri-annual!) photo-marathon at a lovely park in Hamilton/Ancaster.

We had six sessions lined up for 20-minutes each and even though the sessions were really short we were all super excited by how many fabulous shots we were able to capture in that time!   I would highly, highly recommend this type of session to everyone!

If you’re considering family portraits but are nervous your little ones won’t be able to focus for an entire session a Marathon session is perfect for you!  It’s also budget-friendly :)
I have the Fall Photo-Marathon coming up on September 22nd–just in time for Christmas cards and presents!   Email me for booking info!

Enjoy Session #1!


Session #2


Session #3

Yeah, they know they’re adorable…


Session #4


Session #5

I don’t know why but every time I see this shot I think of Mexican drug lords…


Session #6 (my cousin!)

Thanks to everyone who took a chance on a weird concept–you all made my job really easy and fun!

Next Marathon is September 22nd!   $120 + HST, includes a private online gallery and TWO complimentary digital files (worth $45+HST each).   Email me

A Ladies’ Cocktail Picnic Party :: Hamilton Whimsy Photography

Dear Hilda was nominated by her loving daughters in my Mother’s Day Draw a few months ago–hoping to win a mini-session for their mother.   If you were around my Facebook page at the time you’ll remember that contest was hoppin’ towards the end–but after 111 votes Hilda beat out the competition and won the mini-session–which she chose to use with her daughters.

One of her daughters, Carolyn, is also a photographer, so she and I had fun planning the session and dreaming up something unique!  I think we achieved that goal and because of all the girls’ planning and creative energy (and actual energy moving furniture around!) we created a really whimsical little vignette for Hilda’s Mother’s Day mini-sesh.

Happy Mother’s Day Hilda!  You are very clearly much beloved by your girls.

Not Just Skin Deep photo marathon :: Part Five :: Courtney & Dan

We ended the NJSD marathon sessions at the end of a hot day with a romantic couple’s session–just as the sun started to set and that ‘golden hour’ started.   It was great timing for a couple’s session.  And not just any old session–it was their anniversary AND they had just moved into their new home that very morning.  I still can’t believe they even came out after moving the same day!

But I’m so thankful they did–thanks for your support you two.  And Congratulations…on all of it!

Little Julija :: A Summer Tea Party :: Oakville Family & Baby Photographer

Aw…it makes me a little sad to think that this was the last session in Denise & Nick’s Bump-to-Baby sessions.   You can see their maternity shots at Bronte Creek here, and I’m going to post one of baby Julija at the end of this post–because apparently I never blogged it!    (But you can see a mix of both shoots here.)

What an adorable, gorgeous, loving little family!   We’ve had a lot of fun shooting all three sessions and we’ve always ended up with some really beautiful images–if I do say so myself.   It’s difficult to make these guys look bad.

It’s been a fun road–paved with humidity, a little fusing, the ‘cupcake incident’ and lots and lots of smiles.   Thanks for making me look good, you guys.

Sweet little Julija just six months ago!

NJSD Part Four! Hamilton Family Photography

In this fourth and second-to-last blog from the Not Just Skin Deep we get to meet this sweet young family!

Kiera was a fan of my Facebook page before we met and was a last-minute addition to my NJSD Marathon so I was looking forward to meeting her and her boys.   From the get-go there were lots of smiles from little Troy so our session went off without a hitch and we were able to get lots of great shots.

Thanks so much for the support Kiera & Family!

NJSD Part Three! Hamilton Family Photography

This sweet young family is one of those families who I SHOULD know because we have something like 893 mutual friends on Facebook–yet it wasn’t until they signed up for a NJSD session that we finally got to meet.  (And now we’re FB buddies…)

Once we got little Bea warmed up and smiling we had no problem snapping up a bunch of happy family shots.  She even started to “work it” for the camera after a bit!

Thanks for your support Laura and happy to finally meet you and your family!

Not Just Skin Deep marathon sessions :: Hamilton Family Photographer :: Part Two!

Finally part two!

I was so happy to see this Hamilton family’s name on my list of people who signed up for the NJSD fundraising marathon!   I had the pleasure of going to their home a couple years ago to work with their family and their little baby, Izzy, who was just a few months old at the time.   So it was a happy reunion seeing the kids again and getting to work with this sweet little gang again.

Make sure you check out the black & white shot of little Izzy at our first shoot together.  (She looouurrved the fur rug against her naked baby skin…who wouldn’t?)

Vintage Izzy:

Not Just Skin Deep marathon sessions :: Hamilton Family Photographer :: Part One

A couple weeks ago we shot the first marathon of the year!  And it was to raise funds for melanoma awareness!  I had 5 families on-location in a park, all one after another for 20-minute sessions each–and it was really a lot of fun.  I was impressed (with myself?) by how many great shots are to be had in just 20-minutes!

As some of you may know, it’s been about 16 months since my husband Ken received the triumphant news that he had beaten a life-threatening diagnosis malignant melanoma!   So this project was/is very personal as well as fun for me.

There are too many photos to post so I’m going to post each session separately and in the order they were shot.

So let’s start with my dear old Winking pals–Josh and Esther!

So much jumping that day…it was awesome.

We lost some clothing–but these shoots are clothing optional, you know? (4 and under)…

You say you want more jumping?!?  OK!

(Sorry–don’t know why the watermark is on J’s face on the first shot…)

It was SO great to shoot with Esther and Josh and their little monkeys–we really started the day off with a bang…or a jump.

Blog at