Jillian Baudry Photography: Blog https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog en-us (C) Jillian Baudry Photography (Jillian Baudry Photography) Tue, 16 Jun 2020 20:08:00 GMT Tue, 16 Jun 2020 20:08:00 GMT https://www.jillianbaudry.com/img/s/v-12/u842557172-o272088954-50.jpg Jillian Baudry Photography: Blog https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog 90 120 Serenity Circle June 2020 https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/6/serenity-circle-june-2020 Serenity was definitely something that was in short supply this month. With husband back at work but 5 year old still off school, home schooling is now 100% on me. Missing her friends and her teachers (this new teacher leaves much to be desired apparently), our little one has been climbing the walls. I always thought that that expression was rather an exaggeration, but now I know it's not! 

So when husband suggested a trip to the beach a week ago (a socially distanced one of course, going in the evening before sunset, when it was pretty deserted) to let our little girl burn off some steam, I jumped at the chance. The water was surprisingly warm, which is just as well, as we all got soaked. My little girl found it hilarious to try to splash me, despite the camera in my hand but I did get some nice shots out of it and the camera fortunately survived the trip. So here are of our images, some of which are rather more serene than others. 

Beach-4Beach-4 Beach-2Beach-2 BeachBeach Beach-3Beach-3 Beach-5Beach-5

Please follow the circle to find out where my fellow photographer and wonderful friend Wendy May, NE Scotland photographer has been finding Serenity this month.

(Jillian Baudry Photography) beach child coast confinement family France fun girl joy lockdown of photographs photography plage sable sand serenity south splash splashing https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/6/serenity-circle-june-2020 Wed, 17 Jun 2020 15:00:00 GMT
Rhubarb and Custart Tart (with recipe!) https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/6/rhubarb-and-custart-tart-with-recipe When I saw a big basket of rhubarb in the local health food shop recently, I got so excited! I remember eating rhubarb regularly as a child in the UK, but hadn't really seen it before here in southern France. It's just too hot for it to grow here near the coast, although drive a few hours north and the winters are cold enough for it. I used to love eating rhubarb and custard as a child, so I was eager to do something with it along the same lines, but maybe a little bit more grown-up! Hence, my idea for a rhubarb and custard tart!

Rhubarb tart full resRhubarb tart full res

There were 3 elements to this tart - a buttery, melt in the mouth crust, a thick layer of set custard based on the traditional French tart filling, 'crème patissière', and the stewed rhubarb topping that I arranged in a lattice pattern. The tart needs a bit of time to cool down in between each step so leave yourself plenty of time, but it is sooo worth the effort! 

While I was photographing this tart, my husband was painting the shutters of our house. I didn't realise that he had closed one set of shutters in the kitchen, giving me nice moody light to photograph this tart, until after he opened them again! Don't you love a happy accident! :-) 


185g plain flour

2 1/2 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp salt 

140g unsalted butter, very cold and cut into cubes

Approx 1/4 cup iced water

For the pastry, I used a 26cm (10 inch) heavy metal tart tin with a loose bottom, greased it and popped a circle of grease-proof paper at the bottom - nothing worse than breaking a tart when trying to unstick it from the tin! 

I placed the flour, salt, sugar and the butter in a food processor and created crumbs by using the pulse button a few times, then poured it into a larger bowl. I added the water a little at a time, using a spatula to mix. I added just enough water to create a dough, formed a ball, wrapped it in cling film then placed it in the freezer for 20 minutes. In the meantime, I switched on the oven to 180°C / 375°F.

I took my pastry out of the freezer, rolled it out and used it to line my tin. I pricked the bottom, lined it with tin foil and placed baking beans on the bottom. I popped it in the oven for 10 minutes, then removed the baking beans and put it back in the oven for about 20 mins. Just keep an eye on it, as all ovens vary. Part of the way through cooking, I covered the edges of the tart with some strips of aluminium foil as they were browing much quicker than the bottom. Once the tart case was cooked, I let it fully cool. 



400mls milk (I had semi-skimmed in so that's what I used)

100mls heavy cream

4 large egg yolks

4 tbsp corn starch / corn flour

1/4 tsp salt

100g sugar

1 vanilla pod, split down the middle (or vanilla essence)

Place the vanilla pod in a pan with the milk and cream and heat until scalding (not quite boiling). Careful it doesn't burn. In the meantime, whisk the egg yolks, sugar, salt and corn starch in a bowl with a hand whisk for a minute or two, until the sugar has dissolved. Very slowly start to pour the hot milk mixture into the egg yolk mixture, whisking all the time to prevent the eggs from scrambling. Once you've added half of the milk to the eggs, you can now pour it all back into the pan and heat gently, stirring continuously for a few minutes until thickened into a thick custard. Allow to cool and then pour into the baked pastry case.



650g of rhubarb (cut into 4cm/ 1 1/2 inch pieces)

100g sugar

juice of 1/2 lemon

500mls water

Place the sugar, lemon juice and water into a frying pan over a gentle heat and heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add the rhubarb and simmer for 4 - 5 minutes - do not stir the rhubarb. Allow to cool for an hour, then gently lift out the pieces of rhubarb and arrange them on top of the tart in a lattice pattern. Voilà - one rhubarb and custard tart! Enjoy!


(Jillian Baudry Photography) cooking crème crust cuisine custard food French fruit lattice pastry patissière pattern photography pie pretty recipe red rhubarb tart https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/6/rhubarb-and-custart-tart-with-recipe Sat, 13 Jun 2020 08:35:10 GMT
Serenity Circle May 2020 - Slowing it Down https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/5/serenity-circle-may-2020---slowing-it-down 2020, the year the world came to a standstill. Or at least that's what it felt like to those of us lucky enough to stay at home during lockdown. I guess there were two ways to look at this. For sure it was frustrating on a number of levels - educational, work, social. But I also think it's the first time we've been at home together as a family, with literally nothing more important to attend to, in many years. If I'm being honest, after my Mum passing away just before lockdown, I've found this 2 months at home with family rather healing.

Our daily exercise walks have been limited to one hour a day within a half-mile radius, but in a way this has made them all the more precious. We've savoured every moment of them, stopping for the odd photo but never for too long for anyone to get bored. 

Serenity Circle-2Serenity Circle-2

Serenity CircleSerenity Circle Serenity Circle-3Serenity Circle-3

I've finally found the time to get around to something I had been meaning to try for years - making French macarons. I fell in love with these little cookies, at once chewy, crispy and melt in the mouth, when I first visited France decades ago, but the price tag put me off indulging myself too often. With characteristic enthusiasm, I set about reading and researching everything I could find on macarons in April before finally giving it a go - and they were a success! These ones are filled with home made lemon curd (with lemons from our garden) and swiss meringue buttercream. 

Lemon macarons full resLemon macarons full res

We started our little vegetable garden during lockdown. Our courtyard is small so most things are in containers but the results have been so encouraging, plus I was over the moon to see more daughter tuck into our homegrown radishes yesterday. I've finally found a way to get some veggies into her!

radishes full resradishes full res

We've also enjoyed the quiet moments at home. It hasn't always been easy, but we have, finally, thanks to this lockdown, found some much-needed serenity. Let's hope that the worst is behind us and that we can take away some lessons from this slowed-down way of life. 

Please follow the circle to find out where my dear friend Wendy May, NE Scotland photographer has been finding Serenity this month.

Sophie et maman full resSophie et maman full res


(Jillian Baudry Photography) baking child. confinement cooking down family gardening grown healing home journal kithcen lockdown macarons nature photography produce quality radishes slow time https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2020/5/serenity-circle-may-2020---slowing-it-down Wed, 20 May 2020 15:00:00 GMT
Serenity Circle November 2019 - Let's go outside https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/11/serenity-circle-november-2019---lets-go-outside If you know my work at all by now, you know that being outside is my happy place and that walking is my usual route to serenity. Or as much of it as can be found around here!

Last week was cold but sunny, with no snow on the mountains yet, so we wrapped up warm and took the opportunity to drive up the winding mountain roads to the forest. Were we live, we are surrounded by vineyards, which can be pretty, but it's nice to have a change of scene and we're lucky to live only half an hour away from the mountains. Fortunately, hubby is a much braver driver than I am and didn't seem to mind too much tackling the hairpin bends to get to this view!

View from Foret des EcrivainsView from Foret des Ecrivains

A little bit higher up and we were able to park the car and take a walk through the forest. The sun kept playing hide and seek, which made it all the sweeter when I managed to capture our little one backlit by the sun.


My little girl enjoyed collecting chestnuts, acorns and fallen leaves.

ChataignesChataignes Did I mention that it was cold?! After an hour, even my normally cold-resistant hubby felt it was time to go, so we made our way back to the car, more chilled that when we had left, but happily in more ways than one. 

Hector and SophieHector and Sophie

Please follow the circle to find out where my friend Nancy Armstrong, Kansas City photographer has been finding Serenity this month.





Sky Overlays Grid


(Jillian Baudry Photography) autumn backlight chestnuts children depth fall forest France landscape leaves mentoring overlays photography sunburst view https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/11/serenity-circle-november-2019---lets-go-outside Wed, 20 Nov 2019 16:00:00 GMT
Storytelling with Color https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/10/storytelling-with-color If you'd like to learn more about how I incorporate color into my images, please head on over to the Hello Storyteller Blog where I'm talking about Storytelling with Color!


Poppies 1 Full resPoppies 1 Full res


(Jillian Baudry Photography) children color colour images learning photography sky storytelling tutorial https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/10/storytelling-with-color Tue, 01 Oct 2019 17:09:37 GMT
Serenity Circle September 2019 - A staycation https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/9/serenity-circle-september-2019---a-staycation While we didn't go away this summer, we did try to get out and about a bit more than usual. You know when you have visitors to stay and they say "is that place worth a visit or how about this one?" and you have to admit that you don't know because you haven't actually been?! Surely I'm not the only one who loves visiting all the sites when I'm on holiday but just never seems to get around to visiting local attractions when I'm at home?

Well it was finally time to take a "staycation", pretend that we were tourists and visit a popular spot on the Mediterranean coast for the day. We started by taking a trip on the ferris wheel. The view from the top was amazing, even though it was over all too soon.

Blog 1Blog 1 Then our little girl spotted a carousel nearby and there was no chance she would let us walk past it without taking a spin. She eschewed the horses and giraffes for a particularly vibrant fire truck.

Blog 2Blog 2 Then, a short drive along the coast took us to another town with houses seemingly clinging to the side of a cliff and a fantastic viewing point at the top of the "Corniche".

Blog 3Blog 3

Blog 4Blog 4 All in all, a lovely, relaxing day, documented with a few casual photos (rather than any attempts at an orchestrated photo shoot), as we remembered how lucky we are to live in such a beautiful region!

Please follow the circle to find out where my friend Eileen Critchley, Ohio photographer, has been finding Serenity this month.





(Jillian Baudry Photography) big carousel child coast ferris France holiday Mediterranean photography sea sky staycation view wheel https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/9/serenity-circle-september-2019---a-staycation Wed, 18 Sep 2019 15:00:00 GMT
Serenity Circle August 2019 - Stolen Moments https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/8/serenity-circle-august-2019 "For most of human history, then, the vast majority of people have made their art in stolen moments, using scraps of borrowed time".

I couldn't help but think of this quote from Elizabeth Gilbert's book Big Magic this month, as we raced from one place to another, trying to get to appointments, catch up and get organised before the start of yet another school year. We tried to find serenity where we could and also tried to quickly create a few images along the way of these in between moments. 

So on a trip to the city for back to back appointments to obtain ID cards, we managed to sneak in a trip to the cinema (my top tip for keeping cool in the summer heat!) and a morning hospital appointment became an occasion to pop in to the ice cream parlour that we discovered on the way back.

On this particular day, my daughter was delighted that her first ever trip to the dentist had gone so well - she's gotten a guided tour of the dentist's office and tools - and on the way back, the sun was shining, there was a lovely breeze, and so we stopped in the countryside and went for a walk. My little girl picked a pretty bouquet of wild flowers and we enjoyed the peace, the only sound coming from the cicadas singing. When we arrived home, Little Miss enjoyed trimming the stems of her flowers and arranging them carefully in a vase to decorate her room, while I snatched a few images before dinner.

Summer flowers full resSummer flowers full res

How have you managed to make time for serenity this month? I'd love to hear about it!

Please follow the circle to find out where my friend Lori McLellan, Calgary, Alberta, has been finding Serenity this month. 





(Jillian Baudry Photography) arrangement child flowers hand peaceful photography serenity summer table wild wood https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/8/serenity-circle-august-2019 Wed, 21 Aug 2019 15:00:00 GMT
Serenity Circle July 2019 - Letting Go of Perfection https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/7/serenity-circle-july-2019---letting-go-of-perfection I try to remind myself to take out my Lensbaby Edge 50 from time to time, but despite this, it has spent the better part of 3 years just sitting in the cupboard. We always seem to be in a hurry, racing out the door for some activity or other and my usual go-to lenses, the Sigma Art 20mm and the Nikkor 85mm are just, well, easier.

But this time, I remembered my Lensbaby as we were heading out for a cooling evening swim in the river. The past few weeks saw temperatures here reach 43°C (109,4°F), which is more than we're used to and the river is so less packed than the beach with tourists, no dangerous currents to worry about and are car is within easy reach if we forget towels / water bottles / snacks...

For a while, I sat quietly next to our dog Hector and watched my little girl play with my husband in the water - this is their favourite time of the week. I switched out my regular lens for the Lensbaby and time slowed down, as I concentrated on manual focusing, tilting the lens to try to catch some sun flare and trying to capture what the evening felt like, rather than what it just looked like. 

Lensbaby imageLensbaby image

It's far from perfect and I still have a long way to go to get to grips with the focusing and tilting of this lens, but it's definitely a very peaceful way to spend an evening shooting! Do you use any Lensbaby lenses and if so, what's your favourite?

Please follow the circle to find out where my friend Nadeen Flynn, northern California fine art photography has been finding Serenity this month. 




(Jillian Baudry Photography) child daughter father flamingo floater inflatable lake Lensbaby nostalgic photography pink river sunflare swimming https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/7/serenity-circle-july-2019---letting-go-of-perfection Wed, 17 Jul 2019 15:00:00 GMT
Before & After in the Poppy Field https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/before-after-in-the-poppies I received a question about the Straight Out Of Camera (SOOC) of this image so...here we go! :-) 

It was actually a pretty quick edit, with most of the work in Lightroom! I added some contrast (+10) and raised the shadows (+40). In the HSL panel, I increased the yellow hue, lowered the yellow saturation and lowered the yellow luminance to reduce the neon yellow tones in the poppy stalks and grass. I also added a light vignette (-8).

Then I added 2 gradient filters and this is where the image started to come to life! I dragged one gradient filter from the top to enhance the sky, reducing the shadows, adding clarity and adding dehaze. Next I dragged one gradient filter up from the bottom, increasing the exposure by 0.9. 

Just to finish, I took the image into Photoshop, cloned out a few distractions and added a little sunflare...and voilà! Let me know if you have any questions!

(Jillian Baudry Photography) after and before child clouds countryside edit field how Lightroom Photoshop poppies red sky to tutorial https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/before-after-in-the-poppies Sat, 18 May 2019 16:58:41 GMT
Serenity Circle - May 2019 https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/serenity-circle---may-2019 Two things happened last week. Firstly, I caught my husband, my Mum and my little girl curled up on the sofa giggling over an album of old photos. Secondly, the poppies began to bloom in the fields where we live. So I got the chance to 'recreate' one of my favourite childhood memories with my own little girl.

One of the lasting childhood memories that has stayed with me was a trip to Spain with my parents when I was about 4 years old. We left the rainy skies of the UK for one, much longed for, week of sunshine. We drove around in a hire car and one day spotted a sea of red poppies in a field. Dad parked up and squealing with delight, I jumped out of the car, my little blue plastic basket in hand and ran into the field to pick these amazing red flowers that I had never seen before! 

I still remember the warm air, the sun beating down and those red flowers that seemed to wilt and turn squishy as soon as I picked them. My Dad captured this with our little Olympus Trip camera (the field of poppies is behind him) and so the moment was recorded. PhotoScan (2)PhotoScan (2)

Fast forward thirty-something years and picture us driving home from a visit to Northern France. You could tell as soon as we headed south of Lyon that we were entering a different climate. Windows wound down, coats and jumpers off to reveal t-shirts, we looked out the window as we approached home and saw a sea of red poppies in bloom, which hadn't been there when we left one week earlier. My little girl begged to be allowed to pick some. So we returned the next day, her little basket in hand and raced each other to get to those poppies. The icing on the cake was this incredible sky! One of the happiest of shared moments and now a treasured memory that I hope she will still remember in thirty years' time.

Poppies 1 Full resPoppies 1 Full res

Please take a moment to visit the incredibly talented artist and friend Lori McLellan, Calgary area photographer who is next in the circle this month.


(Jillian Baudry Photography) backlight child clouds editing overlays Photoshop poppies sky https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/serenity-circle---may-2019 Wed, 15 May 2019 15:00:00 GMT
4 Tips to Capture Fun-Filled Outdoor Images https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/4-tips-to-capture-fun-filled-outdoor-images Head on over to the amazing Gina Yeo's blog, The Photographer's Notebook to check out my article 4 Tips to Capture Fun-Filled Outdoor Images and learn my top tips for photographing our outdoor adventures! 

BeachBeachChild playing at beach in summer sprinkles sand in backlight with sunflare in France


(Jillian Baudry Photography) adventures child France how images learn outdoor outside photography tips to tutorial https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/5/4-tips-to-capture-fun-filled-outdoor-images Wed, 08 May 2019 15:40:05 GMT
Video Tutorial: Compositing in Photoshop to improve composition https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/4/tutorial-compositing-in-photoshop-to-improve-composition I try hard to get things right in camera, but as we all know, littles move fast and occasionally, I will 'rescue' an image that I love! Here, we stayed late at the beach one evening, as my little girl was having such a great time playing hide and seek in the sand dunes with her Daddy. So here's a quick video tutorial about what I did in Photoshop. 

Here is the final image, after compositing, cloning out the cars in the background, changing the colour of the swimsuit and adding some contrast. Please let me know if you have any questions! :)

Beach composite full resBeach composite full res


(Jillian Baudry Photography) beach compositing editing how image layers photography Photoshop to tutorial video https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/4/tutorial-compositing-in-photoshop-to-improve-composition Wed, 24 Apr 2019 19:27:37 GMT
Serenity Circle - March 2019 https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/3/serenity-circle---march-2019 As time flies by and each day seems to go by quicker than the one before it, becoming a blur of school bags, library books, packed lunches and the other million or so little bits and pieces that make up the routine, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind.

But when I choose to pick up my camera, slowing everything down to create a landscape image, that is truly my relaxing 'me time'. I created this image on a visit to the beach, little one, husband and dog racing around at the other side of the beach. I just took a few moments to soak it all in and try to capture the moment, that feeling of calm. So this is what those few minutes looked like.

Beach (1)Beach (1)

Please take a moment to visit talented artist and friend, Eileen Critchley, Ohio Photographer, who is next in the circle this month.

(Jillian Baudry Photography) beach footprints France landscape Mediterranean mentoring overlays photography sand sea https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/3/serenity-circle---march-2019 Wed, 20 Mar 2019 15:00:00 GMT
The Luck of the (Part) Irish - Happy Saint Patrick's Day! https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/3/the-luck-of-the-part-irish---happy-saint-patricks-day Growing up in Ireland (I am now French but wasn't born here) was an adventure - the fields surrounding our home truly were emerald green and when we climbed to the top of the hill across the way, we could see the Atlantic Ocean. It was there, many years later, that I met my future husband. We've promised our little girl that we'll take her there too one day. I just hope it's not raining too much when we get there (after all, there's a good reason the greenery there is emerald!). Happy Saint Patrick's Day!



(Jillian Baudry Photography) 17th Day dress girl gold green hands Ireland Irish March Patrick's Saint shamrock St https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/3/the-luck-of-the-part-irish---happy-saint-patricks-day Sun, 17 Mar 2019 20:10:16 GMT
Serenity Circle - February 2019 https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/2/serenity-circle Whenever I need to regain my inner calm, there's one place above all others that I like to go - the beach. No matter what the weather, a walk along the beach never fails to make me feel better. The fresh air, the wide open space which makes my problems suddenly seem so insignificant in the great scheme of things and the rhythmic sound of the waves which soothes my nerves....

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I try to take the time to notice the little details, such as the tiny footprints of the birds in the wet sand and the crunching of the shells underfoot near the water's edge. I record these moments with my camera. Just the simple act of setting up my camera makes me slow down and focus on the moment in hand. 

beach photography, mentoring and overlays in FranceImage 1beach photography in the south of France

Image 3Image 3 Where's the one place you like to go when you need some serenity? 

Please visit the talented Wendy May, Still life photographer who is next in our circle.

(Jillian Baudry Photography) beach calm France landscape Mediterranean peaceful Photography serenity tranquil https://www.jillianbaudry.com/blog/2019/2/serenity-circle Wed, 20 Feb 2019 15:31:54 GMT