Author Archives: Maria Healey

About Maria Healey

Photographer to stylists and stylish brides. Navy wife & new mom. Coffee drinker & dessert eater.

Pregnancy Progression

16 weeks to 40 weeks pregnant, pregnancy progression, baby bump

Baby Bump growth from 16 weeks to 40 weeks


Here’s the recent project I’ve been working on for the past 9 months. I’m now the proud mom of a beautiful baby boy, born November 10, 2012. Pregnancy certainly had its ups and downs, but it’s a necessary time period to get a happy, healthy baby. Motherhood has been quite the journey these past three weeks and I’m loving every minute of it, even when he’s screaming at the top of his lungs and all I want to do is cry right along with him because I have no idea what to do to make him happy.

Here’s my birth story, in case you are interested in reading it. I had excellent prenatal care from Metropolitan OB/GYN and an incredible labor & delivery experience at Rose Medical Center. I highly recommend both facilities!

At my 38 week check up, it was determined that our baby was breech so we went ahead and chose to set a scheduled c-section. After discussing an aversion with the doctor, I decided I didn’t think I sounded like the best candidate. I was pretty freaked out, but we set it for November 13th, first thing in the AM.

I worked my last day of work this past week and was looking forward to having the entire weekend to just get prepared for baby. Instead, I woke up Saturday morning at 3:45 with incredibly painful contractions. As they lasted longer than the typical 5-10 seconds I’d been experiencing just weeks before, I decided I needed to start tracking them. After 1 hour of 10 minutes apart, I finally awoke Marty and we agreed I should call the doctor. The on-call doctor indicated I should wait until they were 5 minutes apart and then call her back. After another 2 hours, they had steadily dropped to every 5 minutes then 4.5 minutes. It was pretty intense. I would be fully functional for those normal 5 minutes then just bend over huddled over something to breathe & block out the pain & any noise or light for the contraction.

We called the doctor again and then headed to the hospital. It was about 8am at this point. I got checked in via the Emergency Dept and was wheeled off to Labor & Delivery where my cervix was checked. I was dilated to a 6 or 7 cm! I could barely believe it! I thought I was just being a wuss over what was probably a 2! I would have done natural childbirth pretty great!

The nurses indicated that we needed to move fast at this point to get the baby out and I was about to be swarmed with people. I’m actually glad she prepared me for that. I cried a lot, just because of the nerves & anxiety over the immediacy of the situation. I started shaking a little later and thought it was also from the nerves, but apparently that’s just a part of labor.

I was given an epidural and vomitted immediately afterwards. It made me feel pretty nauseous right away and I warned the nurse in a pretty quiet voice that I was going to get sick. I felt perfectly fine after that though and it was such a relief to no longer feel the labor pains.

The surgery was quick & painless, even though I was a complete ball of nerves the entire time. I could only feel slight pressure on my stomach & breathing as they pulled the baby out from the c-section. I heard the baby cry and I lost it. I was just so relieved to hear that. Marty announced it was a boy and we were both surprised and thrilled. His name is Joseph Thomas and he’s pretty much perfect, but I am his mom, so I’m biased ūüėČ

We had our little surprise baby on November 10th at 10:09 am. We were discharged from the hospital on November 13th – his actual scheduled c-section date.

I wanted to provide you all with all the details just to let you know that it all works out. We thought we had a plan, but it didn’t work out that way – but we survived and still get the most precious gift out of this surprise journey! We are just so thrilled to have this little boy right now. It hasn’t been an easy road, but it will get better and I’m already so in love with him. It’s also such an incredible thing to see my husband as a dad. It makes me fall even more in love with him!

IMG_6330 IMG_6347JosephHealey-MariaHealey


New Endeavor!

I recently had to take a look at my photography business and assess where I saw the future of it going. As the hubs is in the military, that means we move quite often – like every 3 years. As expected, that makes running a business (any business) difficult. As I’ve just gotten comfy with building a great clientele, it’s time to take off for a new city. It especially makes the profession of wedding photography difficult, as most clients are a direct result of the relationships you build.

That brings me to my New Endeavor! I recently made the decision to specialize in high-end weddings, under my own name. I love the StudioSister name for family portraits and fun parties, but I needed something a little more sophisticated for my intended future clientele. Thank you for the years of StudioSister support! Please take a moment to go ahead and check out Maria Healey Wedding Photography and the new Facebook page to keep up to date with all things wedding photo related!

Wedding Promo Video

Studio Sister Photography Promo from Michael Sasser on Vimeo.

Video created by the talented Michael Sasser and filmed at Steve & Melissa’s Manor House wedding. Currently booking 2012 and 2013 weddings.

Pinterest Problems

(don’t worry, I’m the copyright holder and original owner of this image)

I was first introduced to¬†Pinterest¬†a little over a year ago when I was collaborating on a¬†shoot¬†for¬†Brenda’s Wedding Blog. At first, I was totally intimidated and didn’t really know how to use it. I already had ideas in my head of what direction I wanted this shoot to go and was pretty good at conveying them to the team. The shoot was a success – without the use of Pinterest. Similarly, I was able to plan my own wedding three years ago – without the use of Pinterest.

A few months went by and the Pinterest hysteria picked up. I quickly found myself losing an extra two hours of sleep every night as I browsed the shared pins and boards. I guffawed at the snotty athletic girl photos that said, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels,” as I repinned any recipe with the description of “Red Velvet.”

As I’m a photographer, it seemed like a good idea to make a board for potential poses. I started storing all the cute child, senior & wedding poses I adored in there and would reference it when I needed a spark of inspiration before a shoot. I had another big collaborative shoot coming up, so we all shared a board and added our ideas to it. “Why didn’t I do this before?!” was all I could think, it made the process so easy!

It is unbeknownst to me why the creators of Pinterest would think that members would only use this site to chronicle their own work. I do indeed have a board that features my professional work and I use it as a point of reference for potential clients. I’ve already pinned everything of mine that belongs to me that I can find online. It’s not getting repinned much but I’d be happy if it was. To me, that would mean people liked what they saw and hopefully it made them stop by my blog for an additional look. Obviously, I can’t speak for everyone or every photographer on this issue.

Here’s what brought this issue up for me: I was recently contacted via email by a very successful, well-known photographer to take down his images that I had pinned, as inspiration for another shoot. I certainly didn’t go into detail with him, just said, “My apologies, they will be removed asap,” and I removed them immediately. I’m grateful he took that approach rather than having his attorney send me a letter threatening to sue me. Me! I don’t have much to lose (sidenote: I’m curious if my business insurance would help in this case).

So now I’m just completely confused. If I follow the Terms + Conditions of Pinterest, I should just go ahead and close my Pinterest account, as I’m not the copyright holder of even a small percentage of my pins and repins! I’m currently helping my sister plan her wedding and in doing so, we are collaborating on a Pinterest board for inspiration. No, I haven’t taken all of the photos that we’ve used on that board!

I really thought that Pinterest was going to be a virtual playground for creative professionals and it seemed that photographers, specifically, were getting the best use out of it. I am having a hard time grasping why photographers are now the ones that are so incredibly upset with Pinterest. I certainly don’t think that because someone repins my original image that it means they think they own that image or that they will get a print of that image to hang in their house. I am just a small time photographer though – I’m not a big deal. Is that why I don’t see this as such an epidemic problem?

What’s your opinion? Leave the pinning world behind or continue on into the great unknown?

Lechtenberg Wedding Red Carpet Preview

Getting Ready & Group Photos     Ceremony & Reception

These are the links to check out the happy couple’s wedding slideshow, as presented to them for their Red Carpet Preview.

My three favorite things about this session:

1.  7 adults + 3 kids = Great Turnout!

2.  It was my first group of clients at the new studio and my first Red Carpet Preview viewing session!  Such a wonderful success!

3. ¬†Everyone loved being able to look through all of the sample albums and displays! ¬†They couldn’t believe the before & after photos – retouching make a big difference!

Wedding Featured!

The Lechtenberg wedding was featured in the¬†Best Wedding Sites magazine¬†last week! ¬†I was thrilled to have my work featured on Brenda’s Best Wedding Sites blog as well as the magazine! ¬†It received some glowing compliments and I’m very proud of the work I did for this beautiful wedding. ¬†It really helps that the bride was always smiling and you can just see the love between them! ¬†It was my honor to work with them on their wedding day and I’m glad to know I provided them with pictures and memories that will last a lifetime!

Lechtenberg Wedding

My three favorite things about this session:

1.  Black & Yellow was an excellent color combo, in my opinion.  (Go Hawkeyes!)

2. ¬†The Rainbow! ¬†When the DJ grabbed me during the reception to tell me there was a rainbow outside, well, I was speechless! ¬†It’s pretty helpful to work with such awesome vendors!

3. ¬†I finally got to put the “sister” in StudioSister! ¬†Missy was my second shooter and assistance for this wedding and she rocked my socks off! ¬†BIG thanks go to her for being such a huge part of making this wedding such an incredible success!