To get a great picture of your baby, take the photo at sunset
when the light casts a diffused, golden glow.
On any given evening in Chicago, moms can be found giggling in
living rooms, drinking red wine, eating M&Ms and talking about
baby photographs, thanks to one woman's frustration with her own
Four years ago, when Betsy Drew gave birth to Meg, she grabbed
her camera and took roll after roll of pictures. None turned out as
she had planned.
"As a parent, you're filled with such love and you're so
passionate about your children, but pictures don't represent the
moment appropriately," says the Western Springs mom. "I said, 'Why
don't they? What's wrong with my pictures?' "
Drew thumbed through photography books and spoke with anyone who
knew anything about photographing babies.
Fast-forward four years.
Drew, now the owner of Better BABY Photography, shares her
knowledge with other frustrated moms. About every two weeks, Drew
makes a house call to homes filled with mothers and their friends
who sit around eating hors d'oeuvres while she explains the art of
taking baby pictures.
"Every parent possesses the most important element in
photography-a love for their subjects," Drew says. She adds the
technical points, such as:
Julie Carter, 32, of Evanston, invited friends to join her as
she learned about photographing her 16-month-old daughter,
"It's casual and fun and it's a bunch of moms of varying levels
of photography," says Carter.
Once parents understand the art of photography, they need a
place to put their photos, so Drew networks with Parent Prep, a
small, selective group of Chicago-area people who provide services
for parents. Through the group, she met Meredith Park of Chicago,
who throws scrapbook parties. Now, they sometimes work
"Betsy and I get along so well and it's easy for me when I'm
teaching the part of the class, to refer back to the things that
I've learned from Betsy," Park says. "It's a great compliment and
people really enjoy it because they get a lot out of it. They go
back to their house, take pictures and get to see what they've
learned come to fruition."
One Friday each month, Park hosts her own class from 6 p.m. to
midnight at her house. Park, a consultant for Creative Memories,
scrapbooking company, also makes house calls for parents who want
to throw their own parties.
For more information about the photography and scrapbooking
classes, along with other parent services, visit
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