The best way to print your instagram photos

The best way to print your instagram photos

The easiest way to print your Instagram photos

If you’ve read my blog for a while, you’ll know that I am really passionate about capturing gorgeous images of your family.  Like really passionate!  But what you may not have picked up on yet, is that I am just as passionate about printing those images. Getting them off your camera and out of the cloud and onto solid ink & paper.  Prints that you can hold, touch and see even if the batteries are flat or the wifi is out.   Printing your photos make you smile, in fact, there was a once a study done that having print family photos around your home helped to improve your children’s self-esteem.

But hey, let’s get real here. Printing photos takes time. It takes effort.  It’s rarely going to make it to the top of your to-do list.  Heck!  I’m a professional photographer and printing my own photos rarely makes it to the top of the list. It may or may not be the case that I only just recently did the first print, reshuffle & refresh of the family photos on my walls in nearly three years!!  And as for photobooks, well I’m not sure I’m prepared to incriminate myself there – more than I’ve already done anyway 😉

If you’re anything like me I have the best news you’re going to hear all year!  What if I told you, printing photo books could be done in just a few minutes.  Or, even better you could set it on autopilot and have gorgeous photo books printed beautifully and sent you on a regular basis without you even clicking a single button on your phone.  Impossible?  You’re crazy Lisa I hear you say?  That last part may be true, but happily, for busy people the world over, you can now automate your photo books.  I bring you chatbooks.  Beyond easy photo books!

You can create custom photo books, or set up a Photo Book Series, then forget about it: photos you post on social media (Facebook or Instagram) or choose from your phone will be added in automatically.

How to create the easiest ever family holiday photo book

Naturally, I had to fully test out the book before I’d recommend it (which I absolutely do).  I’m a tough sell too, not only do I want good colour and consistency, I want the software to be easy to use. A recent family holiday in Croatia was the perfect opportunity to road test Chatbooks.  See, I take a lot of photos when we are on holidays, a lot, and for special trips, I also love to keep a diary of the holiday.  When I get home the intention is to make a photo book from the images, but the sheer effort involved in culling my images and setting up the book means it can be years, and then a few more before anything happens.  This trip, I had myself a photo book, with a daily note/diary entry in my hand in just a few weeks after the trip, to use their tagline – it was beyond easy!!

During the trip I simply uploaded a photo a day to instagram, said a little or a lot about the day, and added a unique #hashtag to those photos. When I got home, I simply created a custom photo book based on the #hashtag, checked I hadn’t missed a day and that they were in order.  And shazam, this beauty arrive in the post a few weeks later.

Yahh me!  Even I was shocked at myself.  Not just for special events.  These photo books are perfect for photo a day projects and for daily life.  Just set up the photo book series and chatbooks will automatically print and send you a book for every 60 images.  They’ll let you know when you’re getting close so you can go in and edit the selection.  You can set this automatic process for photos on your Instagram, facebook or your camera roll if you don’t use social media.

I was really happy with the colour and the printing of my photos, the quality of the paper and the book was amazing for the price.  Oh yes, the price.  Let’s talk about that.

The most affordable photo book

How much does this all cost I hear you ask?  Surely such simplicity is going to cost me.  Nope, these are some of the most affordable photo books I’ve ever used. At the time of writing, just $8 USD for the automatic books, and $12 for custom – free shipping per book. Even taking into account my upgrading to a hardcover and adding a few extra pages and shipping to Australia, it was still great value!

Try them out yourselves

But don’t take my word for it, try Chatbooks for yourself, don’t loose your precious memories in your hard drive!

60 page photo books for $8

Go – get printing – you just ran out of excuses!

The return of the silver queen! – APPA 2016

The return of the silver queen! – APPA 2016

Just a few short weeks ago, the Australian Professional Photography Awards (APPA) 2016 were held in Melbourne.  For the first time in years I didn’t attend in person, but watched from afar, having only just returned from a lovely six week break with the family.  And as lovely as it would be, I’m not yet in the position to take endless breaks from the business.

While I wasn’t there in person, I was there in spirit (much to my families amusement) and spent much of the three days glued to the computer watching the online judging of Australia’s top professional portraits, hoping my slightly dodgy internet would hold out and I wouldn’t miss my four images being judged.

Back in June, I was completely humbled to win the WA Professional Family Photographer of the Year for the third year in a row (I can still hardly believe that).  So I decided to take three entries from that portfolio and enter them in the APPAs, swapping out just one image for a newer portrait I thought might do a little better.

Since 2012 I’ve been lucky enough to have each of my four images entered awarded with a silver or silver with distinction at APPA, a feat in consistency not many achieve and earning myself the nickname of the silver queen. Last year I went for broke and entered a serious of images I felt were my strongest ever, hoping to add a Gold image to those awards.   Sadly for me the stars didn’t align and I came away with just one silver award.  And no gold.  It wasn’t my year.

I am very happy to report this year, the stars did align, all four images entered this year earning a silver or silver with distinction award! The silver queen returns!

This year I entered all my images in the Family Portrait category, this means that the images had to be taken at a commissioned session. No models, just my gorgeous clients and their families.  It means so much to have this work recognised by my peers.

If you’d like to read a little more about the back story behind each image, just click on it and find out how I take portraits just like these everyday 🙂



Last week was the WA Epson Professional Photography Awards.  The WEAPPAs!  It’s a time of year I love for so many reasons.

  1. It’s fun!  For a few days I get to crawl out of my dark editing cave and catch up with great friends, make new friends and generally talk to other grown ups who love photography.
  2. There’s always lots of chocolate.  Lots!
  3. The challenge of finding/creating/shooting and/or editing my entries is unbeatable.  Every year I go through my past few years work, assessing and reviewing where I’m at and where I’m headed.   Some years I’m inspired to create new work, learn new techniques and push myself further than I’ve gone before. Without the unmovable deadlines, these works might stay on the one day list.
  4. Inspiration.  WA has some absolutely amazing photographers and the work that is entered blows me away every year – with out fail!
  5. There’s the mountains of chocolate.  I do love chocolate.

This year I’ve been really busy, I’ve started up a this fab new venture and have loved teaching 100s of Mums how to use their camera’s and take photos of their kids they really love.  I’ve still been working full time at my portrait studio, Lilypad Photography, and running two businesses take a lot of time, so I was tempted not to enter the awards this year.  I hadn’t found time to shoot anything new, or added any extra creative elements to shoots.  I’d been busy taking photos parents love.

Having reached my Master of Photography, I was excited enough to officially be invited to judge at the awards, a goal I’ve aspired to for since I started entering!  A part of me felt judging this year would be enough, a new exciting challenge.

However, it’s also a fact that I suffer from FOMO (fear of missing out).  It was this FOMO, and the knowledge that it’s way more exciting to have your images in mix, that lead me down the familiar path of finding four images from the past two years.  I found my four. cleared one “school hours” day to prepare them to an awards standard.  I made my printing appointment with PJ at Perth Pro Lab.  Off to my framer for expert matting.  Then I sent them off to be judged in the family portrait category.WA-STAMPS-11

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I’d win the category. Again.

For the third year in a row. Wow!

Thank you to my completely awesome clients who allow me into their lives to capture these heart warming images. Thank you!


Your WA Professional Family Photographer of the Year 2014, 2015 and 2016!

And because this is a photography blog! Here’s my winning entries.  Hands up if  you’d like to hear  a behind the scenes on how I created the images?

raw vs jpeg

National Photographic Portrait Prize

National Photographic Portrait Prize

I’ve just returned from an exciting weekend attending the opening of the National Photographic Portrait Prize in Canberra.  Especially exciting for me because one of my portraits had been selected as a finalist!!   When I was phoned with the news late last year I’m pleased to report there was a excited squeal and a wee happy dance jig or three.   I given feedback from the judges as well that they really connected with the boys in the portrait, relating it to moments with either their boys or when they were a boy.  While there are times I love to set up special portraits or images – this particular portrait was almost a total complete candid moment, it wasn’t set up, styled or posed – Jayden and Sawyer, the brothers in the image, regularly set up and race their cars down the ramp and down the driveway.  Lining up the winners and losers to the side.  A  timeless glimpse in to their childhood.

It’s such a amazing honour to have one of my portraits hanging in the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, the exhibition will be on until June 28th an will then tour to selected locations in Australia for around 12 months.  You can see all the finalists online here – and until June 28th vote for your favourite!

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