Results for category "Commercial"

Brand New Website!

Our new website is now live!

All new pages and easy to use.  Visit the site right now by going here:  Or, you can just copy that into your browser.  Either way, you get to the same place.  The first ten visitors to take advantage of online booking for a regular portrait session will get a FREE set of THREE 8×10 prints from their session!

Here are some features we’re happy to include as part of our new site:

  • Cleaner design (much less stuff and more information & pictures)
  • Quicker access (fast one- or two-click access to the things you want to know now)
  • Integrated online booking (you can book online from most places on the site, 24/7)
  • Easy to see our current specials and promotions (it’s right on the home page under “Book Now!” – you don’t have to book to see them)
  • Blog and contact access on the first page.  Don’t hunt for a way to get in touch with us, it’s right there!
  • Completely mobile-friendly.  Now, all aspects of our website and support sites are mobile-friendly.  This means regardless the device you are using, or which functionality you are using on our website, your phones, tablets, laptops AND desktops will adjust properly for the best view.
  • Easier updates.  It’s now quicker and easier for us to update the pictures and information on our website.  So, expect to see new stuff more often!

A sneak peek at the area's BEST photographer new website at TLC Photography

Thanks for taking the time to look at our new site.  We hope to hear from you soon!

Spring Flings!

Now is the time for lots of new growth, just about everywhere.  We have started to really settle into our new studio space in downtown Martinsburg, and have so much to be grateful for.  We’re getting familiar with our merchant & residential neighbors and there’s just something in the air that feels positive!  And we’re not about to stop there!

The response to the baby contest was amazing to us, and we were so happy to see so many people acknowledging our posts about it.  But that is our big winter promotion, and now it’s spring.  So, time to offer a little more.

What’s coming up?  Easter is upon us, and we’ve seen more than our share of chicks, bunnies, eggs and pretty dresses.  Now it’s time for high school proms, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

And a new website.

A sneak peek at TLC Photography's new website

And online booking.

Our new website debuts on Friday, April 3.  We’re putting it through its final paces and will reveal the “new look” on Friday at 11am!  There are several new features, including many new links to our social media outlets.  We also simplified our website considerably, making it easier to find what you’re looking for (which users of our old site will remember as tedious and time-consuming), and integrated directly with our client galleries and our new online booking system.  Clean, simple, and easy to use.  Take a look on Friday!

Online booking has been a long time coming… it’s integrated into our new website, and will be prominent on our Facebook page and other social media sites, as well as our blog.  Look for “Book Now” on any of those locations to book portrait sittings, senior portraits, special mini-session opportunities and more.  Soon, we’re going to add much more functionality!  You’ll be able to book your sessions and events 24/7!

Want to try out our online booking?  Here are three specials we have running right now:

Book your prom pictures!  There are area high school proms on April 25, May 2, and May 9.  You can get your pictures taken in your prom best without having to wait in line!  Choose from several different backdrops, have multiple poses taken, and even get some custom-designed street shots taken!  Want to know more?  You can, if you just click Book Now!  But here’s a little secret… there are coupons floating around out there (Dana’s Tuxedo, Sokel Skin Care & Makeup, for example) to take $10 off your picture package!

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are both rapidly approaching.  We’re ahead of the game, though, and have created two mini-session opportunities for you to take advantage of.  You check either or both of them out below:

Mommy & Me sessions in Martinsburg

For our Mommy & Me mini-sessions on April 18, click Book Now!

Daddy & Me mini-sessions are here!

For the Daddy & Me mini-sessions on May 30, click Book Now!

See how easy that is?  We’re looking forward to showing off more of what we can do in the near future.  Meanwhile, it’s back to work shining up the new website for you.  See you on Friday!

Concepts: The Amazing Black Dress

Sometimes concept shoots have a theme, or they are things I want to do to explore some technique or idea.  And sometimes they are borne out of a cooperative effort between multiple people.  This particular shoot was just that.

I had worked with Cindy Alderton a few times, on weddings, shoots, and collaborations of various ideas we had.  The graveyard shoot was one such concept shoot.  Her approach in that shoot was more intense than mine, but we achieved mutual results that were quite usable.

This time was considerably different.  Cindy designed and created the Amazing Black Dress, and we collaborated on the design of the hair, although Cindy ended up doing the updo work.  The design concept for the shoot was mostly mine, although the shooting angle and developmental approaches differed after the shoot.

I welcome collaborations with other artists.  We only grow through diversity.  Cooperation outweighs solitude by at least a hundred-fold.


This first image comes from the idea that something is attempting to take the young woman away, a “something” that is scary and has her wrapped up in its way with the red sheer fabric.  It’s all quite open to interpretation, really.  I was going for the lighting concept more than anything else.


Now trapped, the young woman must plead for her safety.  What is at stake is not quite known, but it could get dire.


As punishment for her pleas, she is banished to the cold and to a less beautiful surrounding.  The model here, Veronica, made it look easier than it actually was.  With temps in the upper 30s, we spent brief periods of planned shots and lighting while she remained wrapped in a coat, and then unwrapped her, took the photos and wrapped her back up.


Sometimes you just have to make the best of a bad situation, and accept that the cold is not your worst enemy.  Perhaps your mind is.  The outside portion of this shoot took less than 30 minutes.  Cindy also did the model’s makeup… she’s sort of universally talented like that.


Finally, there is hope.  The potential of a rescue, a hero… perhaps a knight in shining armor?  Whatever it may be, at this point she’s hoping that it happens soon.


Blissful in rescue, our heroine rests knowing that soon there will be warmth and peace.

BlackDress07224Finally back in the comforts, she wraps up and rests.  No more monsters for her.

Thanks for indulging the commentary.  The Amazing Black Dress shoot was a collaborative effort that had many facets of wardrobe, makeup, lighting, and image-making.

We like collaborating with other photographers, designers, makeup artists and more.  Please contact us to begin creating a new concept!


Concepts: Painting with Family & Friends

We frequently test concepts that are related to requests from clients and ideas we have for future shoots.  We have a commercial client who wants to explore using paint as part of an upcoming shoot.  In order to practice timing, quantity, angles, lighting and much more, we made a model call so we could test the concept.

So, on an afternoon, in a field, three friends from a local high school answered the call and showed up in black (as requested) to spend an hour or so indulging the concept.

NOTE: The first six images are from the dry paint shoot.  After I’d gotten what I needed for the tests, the girls brought out liquid paints that they provided.  Hence the remainder of the images.

NOTE (AGAIN): We have since scheduled TWO family portrait sessions that involve paint in some way.  We are happy to create a session for you that involves paint and painting.  We use only non-toxic paint in safe situations.  Schedule yours now before it gets too cold!  Check us out on our site.

Lights and paint and angles and timing. A dancer jumping with dry paint Dancer with a toe touch and lots of paint Dance photography with paint Dry color paint can be used in a number of ways in the photo shoot Dancers and dry paint make a stunning combination

The photo above was the last of my tests.  The girls brought their own liquid paint and started… well… flinging it at each other.  The lights were still on, the camera still had plenty of images available, and there was time.  So, I kept shooting.  I did re-position some equipment to protect it (which did no good), but the remainder of these images are without direction… just… messy.

Slinging paint onto each other, models got coated in paint Anarchy erupts after liquid paint was brought out. Flashing a symbol at the end of the paint photo shoot All smiles at TLC Photography after the painting shoot Happy to be part of the painted portrait shoot Fulling painted models at the end of the shoot

Top 9 Reasons TLC Photography is Moving

Dance Portraits

We’ve been working in photography in this area for almost 20 years, and have moved our studio twice. We’re moving it again… and we’re convinced that we’re doing it for all the right reasons. But we wanted to make sure that you, our valued followers and clients, understood our reasons and what led to this very big decision. So, we’re sharing our reasoning with you!

9. Our market, clients, and the photography industry have all changed. The shooting space that we have now is no longer suitable for our needs, and we would rather have a more focused space in which we can concentrate on the things that we do best. The new space will be plenty big, and we can still photograph large family groups (up to 35) with ease, as well as babies, seniors and boudoir.

8. We want to feel “at home” in our studio. Since the building we are in was originally designed in a different era of the industry, and with differing goals in mind, adapting to a new and ever evolving landscape in photography would not be as easy as starting with a blank slate. In our new space, we are starting fresh. No fixed sets or fixed backdrops, but a few things we like and use most, along with our own creativity.

Trash The Dress, Shenandoah River

7. We realized that we don’t need a “park” in our backyard, as we have partnered with a few local (and very generous) farmers and other land owners to use their property for sessions. The best part of this is that you will almost surely have exclusive imagery for your on-location sessions. Plus, we have been working on many new technological approaches to putting you where we need you to be for the perfect shot.

6. Our new location does not have any “neighbor” issues, such as barking dogs, skunks, and cats that use our backyard as a litter box. Let’s just leave it at that.

5. The building we are in now, and the property it is on, have a host of issues that we cannot easily overcome. So, changing our location so that we do not and cannot have those issues is a best option. That doesn’t mean we won’t have issues at our new studio… but at least there we have more control over them.

4. We want to make a bigger impression. We have tried several ways to get people to see our work. Facebook and other social media outlets help some. But seeing our work is most of what draws people in. Route 11 (Winchester Ave) is a 40-45MPH road, and even just seeing our sign is not easy. Trying to put pictures out for people to see, even large ones on the deck, would be met with maybe a second’s worth of exposure. In our new facility, we have five huge 5×7′ windows… and we have a lot planned for those big beautiful sunshine gatherers! Plus, in a building with no windows, we get NO sun exposure… now, we will. Every day.

Hummingbird Cooper Captures

3. Cooper Captures (the wildlife and scenic photography started by Diana early last year) needs to shine… the work is exquisite, and it needs a place to really be seen by many. There are NO windowsin our current studio, and like you saw in #4 above, you can’t make an impression by showing it to a few people online. Diana will be setting up a wonderful display of her work in the corner windows, and we will be offering retail sales of matted prints, gallery canvases, greeting cards and much more. Plus, it will be much easier to see other wildlife photos on our large, color-corrected monitors!

2. We need to create… for awhile now, we have wanted total control of our sessions. While we take every measure to ensure that we provide each of our clients with a unique experience, we are surrounded by the sameness of a studio that was designed to churn out session after session with everyone getting the same treatment. We want more than that for our clients, and plan to offer very unique photography you can only get from the creative genius that gets its inspiration from other artists, both performing and from those who create works of art all the time. We’re looking forward to some very new and original work!

1. We crave interaction. In the last year or so, we have gotten much more involved in our community and with fundraising and “people” events. We’ve found that doing that from a building that is located nowhere near any of that, we can’t help as many people as we wish. Being in a downtown location will give us the ability to not only support our merchant neighbors, but to hopefully give them a reason to do the same. We know that is something we will have to earn, but it is also something we are more than prepared to do.

Between now and November 1, we will give you lots more information. This will include a big Open House we are planning, and lots of fun specials you can look forward to for the holiday season! But mostly, we’re looking forward to setting up our first BIG window display in town. It’s going to start small, and grow. Keep an eye out… you won’t be able to miss it!


Change Your Phone Name

Who are you?

Is your phone name “WIRELESS CALLER”?


Or maybe “UNKNOWN”?

These caller ID names come up frequently on our phone system at the studio.  They are generally assigned by your wireless phone company as the default when you sign up for service.  And, you can change them!

Now, I’m not certain how exactly it works for other services, but I’m sure there’s something similar available on other systems.  Here’s how to change your name on Sprint (our wireless carrier):

  1. Login at
  2. Hover your mouse over “My Sprint” (second row of tabbed buttons).
  3. Click “My Account” (it’s clickable, even though there are other options under it).
  4. In the third section (devices), you will see your phone(s) listed.  Under the type of devices, you will see “Caller ID name is set to: ” followed by what people see when you call them.
  5. Click on “Caller ID name” and a pop-up window will show the names for each of the devices on your account, give you the opportunity select one of the defaults, and also to enter a Custom Entry.  Once you’ve done that, it takes up to 24 hours to get spread throughout the system.

Now, when you call a business or someone else with Caller ID, your name will show.  The likelihood of your call being accepted is MUCH greater if you include your name in the Caller ID.  Businesses generally get a lot of Spam calls and sales calls each day, and they will often associate out of area phone numbers (in this area, ones that don’t have a local area code) with another sales call, FAX or robo-spam call.  And they might just get ignored.

We pick up virtually every call.  Since switching to a digital phone service a couple of months ago, we can also recognize people who call frequently and add their Caller ID to our system.  It helps make sure we take calls from people who are clients we know best.

But if you’re calling for a local service or product, and don’t get an answer… maybe it’s because your Caller ID says “UNKNOWN” or something else that’s not as appealing as your beautiful name is. 🙂

Awesome architecture


I’m always fascinated by really cool and unusual building features. In this case, we were at Dan’s Tap House in Boonsboro, and Diana noticed the ceiling.

It was definitely picture worthy.

Studio for Rent

When was the last time you were working on a project and said to yourself, “I wish I had a really nice studio space to work in, with plenty of lights, props and backdrops to do what’s really in my head”?  Well, we’re going to help you with that… AND offer to train you to use it.

Here’s the link to check out what we’ve put together for you (there are more pictures to come): TLC Photography’s Studio Rental Page.


You can rent for as little as two hours, or for entire days at a time.  Small projects to large, we can accommodate you.  And here’s the best part: while the studio introduction is free of charge, Tony is also available for one-on-one mentoring for a smaller additional charge than his usual rate when you are also renting the studio.

Go take a look at the link.  All the information, including the equipment data, rental rates, and a gallery of pictures is right there.  We’re preparing an introductory video as well, which will come soon.  Questions?  Ask!

304-263-3100 or


Summer Help

It is about this time each year that we start our quest for qualified help for the summer positions listed below. But please, before you apply blindly you must understand a few things about the job(s) and us. The jobs are most usually filled by people who are happy, eager to learn, don’t mind working with creative people (we aren’t the easiest), and have a mind that can create along with us.  We are a mom and pop shop, albeit one that acts and thinks on a bigger scale than that.  You should think that way, too.  The job descriptions don’t begin to scratch the surface. 🙂

  • Studio assistant – This person will help greet clients, show them to the dressing room(s), help carry clothes and props, setup sets, scenes, props and lights, watch and suggest alterations to hair, lighting, props and anything else, do the bidding of the photographer (i.e., get drinks, etc.) and clean up the studio when we’re done for the day.
  • Studio receptionist – This person will help greet clients, show them to the dressing room(s), get orders that are ready, take orders as needed, help with marketing, product, order assembly, framing, mounting, cleaning, and anything else we need for you to do.

Both positions are part-time, not permanent (although the potential is there), and have variable hours (i.e., there is no fixed schedule).  We are happy to work around school schedules, other jobs, children’s schedules, etc.  The perfect candidate for either position will be someone who doesn’t “need” the job, but wants to augment their income in our fast-paced studio.

Basically, we need good people who want to have fun, don’t mind doing grunt work, and can remain chipper at all times.  While we cannot legally state we need someone “of a certain age,” we are truly discerning and up front about the job during any interview. If you’re a wallflower, please don’t contact us. We want people who are going to work WITH us, not just FOR us.

To apply, do one of the following:

  1. Comment on this blog post with your name and how we can contact you.  Remember that all blog comments are public, though.
  2. Email me at
  3. Send me a private message on Facebook. (

PLEASE do not call.  The reason is simple… we want to leave the phone open for client calls.  If you contact us via messaging, we can email you with information that you can read at your convenience and respond accordingly.

Thanks for looking!

Our New Website

About four years ago, we replaced our HTML website with an all-Flash website, and then later added in some very important directional elements that helped people “find their way” in our complex website structure.

On Monday, March 12, we are changing the entire look of our website.  It will encompass all of the elements of our existing three sites (main, seniors and workshops) as well as making the links to client galleries and Diana’s nature photography easier to get to.

We invite you to visit our new site, which is a hybrid design that incorporates both HTML and Flash with a very strict database structure that makes everything seem more common across all platforms.  It’s even mobile friendly!

We’ve added all the basics, including all new galleries (pictures never before seen on our website), and intend to add much more for you to look at. This will include some behind-the-scenes photos and video, instructional videos that complement our workshops, and some great announcements for specials that go hand in hand with our social network pages and our blog.

Enjoy!  To see it, go to