<![CDATA[Charissa H. Yong Photography - BLOG]]>Wed, 03 Mar 2021 22:53:37 -0500Weebly<![CDATA[Use This Free Light Source to Take Better Pictures.]]>Mon, 01 Mar 2021 05:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/use-this-free-light-source-to-take-better-picturesDo your pictures come out blurry and dark? Do you struggle with getting the right lighting when you are taking a picture of your product?

Read more or watch the video at the end of the blog to learn how you can take better pictures using a free light source.
When you are taking a picture, especially for your business, it is very important to ensure that your image is visually compelling and well lit so your audience will stop scrolling and read your caption/blog.

What is this free light source? Natural light (aka sunlight).

I prefer to use natural light when taking product photography but when I do indoor photoshoots, I prefer to use flash most of the time.
You can bring your subject or your products closer to a window or door. The best time to do this is morning or evening because the lighting is the softest during those times. 

If you have to take the pictures during the brightest time of the day and you feel like you're subject or products are being washed out, you can get sheer curtains and that would diffuse the light a little bit, making the lighting softer and not as harsh. You might have to use one sheer curtain or two sheer curtains. Play around with it and see what works best for you. ​
​I hope this tip helps. If you like to get more tips on how to create better images for your business, click here to download your free copy of the 10 Tips on How to Photograph Better For Your Business Guide.

Let's connect on Instagram too!

Don't feel like reading? Click here to watch the video instead.

<![CDATA[Photography Tip: Landscape Orientation and White Space]]>Mon, 01 Feb 2021 05:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/photography-tip-landscape-orientation-and-white-spaceDo you struggle with cropping an image you took for your social media and lose part of your subject?

I'm going to share 2 tips that can help you create better images for your business and your subject will be the center of attention.

You can also watch the video at the end of my blog.
The FIRST TIP is to take your picture in landscape orientation, horizontally. The reason is most websites and social media use that orientation. If you need to crop it for Instagram (Square) or Pinterest (portrait orientation, vertically), you can easily do that without losing part of your main subject in your image.

​However, it is not the case the other way around. If you take a picture in portrait orientation, vertically, and try to crop it to landscape orientation, horizontally, you will lose a lot of your image and most likely part of your subject too. It also would degrade the file and makes it pixelated.
​The SECOND TIP is to create white space around your subject. What that means is to leave a lot of space around your subject when you take the picture. This is if you plan to crop or add any messaging or logo into your image. This way, you won't lose your subject, which is the most important part of your messaging.
​I hope this tip helps. If you like to get more tips on how to create better images for your business, click here to download your free copy of the 10 Tips on How to Photograph Better For Your Business Guide.

Let's connect on Instagram too!

Don't feel like reading? Click here to watch the video instead.

<![CDATA[Be Careful Where You Get Your Stock Images]]>Fri, 01 Jan 2021 05:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/be-careful-where-you-get-your-stock-imagesDo you use stock images for your business?

Did you know that you can't simply download an image you found from a search engine and use it for your website or social media? You could commit copyright infringement.

Click read more to get tips and where you can download stock images safely to use for your business. You can also watch my video at the end of the blog.​
​What is copyright? Copyright literally means the right to copy but has come to mean that body of exclusive rights granted by law to copyright owners for protection of their work. [Source: https://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/definitions.html]

​The short answer is whoever created the image has the copyright to that image. For you to use that image, you'll have to either get the commercial usage rights from that person or you'll have to buy the copyright of that image, which can cost a lot of money.
​Luckily we have a lot of websites that offer stock images for commercial usage. Unsplash and Pixabay are 2 websites that offer free stock images for commercial usage. You can safely download it and use it for your business. However, I always recommend reading their terms and conditions before you use it.

​Another thing I would like to recommend is when you use the stock image, spend a little time to edit it by adding your messaging and logo. This is to customize a little bit so it doesn't look like the same stock image that thousands of people had been using.
​I hope this tip helps. If you like these short tips to help you create better images for your business, subscribe to my email list where I will be sharing tips to help you create better images and build your personal brand. As a thank you, you'll receive 10 Tips on How to Photograph Better For Your Business Guide.

Let's connect on Instagram too!

Don't feel like reading? Click here to watch the video instead.

<![CDATA[2020 Year-End Review]]>Tue, 22 Dec 2020 05:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/2020-year-end-reviewThis year has been the most challenging year for all of us. Don't you agree?

The pandemic, stay-at-home order, parenting while working, teaching, and taking care of our children, and a crazy storm that hits the East Coast during the summer that took out our power for 4 days.

But this is also the year that has helped me grow so much, both professionally and personally! From conquering my fear of public speaking to being hired by an Emmy Award-winning journalist to do her branding session!

So in this 2020 year-end review blog, I'm sharing all the exciting things that happened in my business and some of my session from this year (watch the video all the way at the end).


  • I participated in the North Jersey Chamber of Commerce's International Women's Day Summit as a Her Story Sponsor.
    • I did my first headshot mini sessions at the event with the help of my mom and husband.
    • I met and photographed Miss Monmouth, Adele Ann Taylor at the event! She was so nice and I had a wonderful conversation with her.
  • My biggest client, Kerry Barrett (owner of Kerry Barrett Consulting), who is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, booked a full branding session with me and we had a 12-hour photoshoot at 5 locations! It was such a fun day!
  • I did a lot of headshot sessions this year and met so many amazing business owners! Due to the pandemic, I did most of my sessions outdoor and I absolutely love it! So many new places to photograph, which make things interesting and fun!
  • I did my first 13 people extended family session at a beautiful location in Cornwall, New York. The fall foliage was in full bloom and the backdrop was gorgeous! That was a fun session and my clients did a fantastic job coordinating their outfits.
  • This is the year that I'm really building my own personal brand and I'm having a blast! Sharing more videos (FYI - I'm on YouTube, subscribe if you haven't), hosted networking events, multiple webinars, and collaborated with some amazing business owners!
  • I even had my own branding photo session done this year with the talented Jessica Jane Photography.
  • In the Fall, I joined 2 women business owners associations (NJAWBO and NAWBO) so I can learn from all the amazing women business owners and take my business to the next level!


My goals for 2021 would be to book more branding clients because I LOVE working with business owners and learn about their business. Some businesses are so unique that I haven't even heard of them. It's super fascinating! I want to help them stand out in the crowded online world so they can make an impact and gain more clients.

I would love to share my knowledge about photography and personal branding as a podcast guest (Putting it out to the universe!) because I love listening to podcasts whenever I have time. It's the best way to learn when you are so busy with 2 young children and don't have time to read.​


​You may not know this but I'm an introvert. I always get so nervous meeting/talking to new people but through networking, I had to really force myself to break out of the shell.

The pandemic definitely pushed me to do a lot of things I was terrified of - public speaking, webinars, posting videos, and showing more of myself online. I'm excited to say that I've done all of that! I still get nervous but the reward of being able to provide value and help people is all worth it! So if you are afraid of doing something, just get started and continue to do it more, because the more you do it, the better you'll get. Don't give up! You got this!

I'm so thankful to my family, friends, my clients, and all the people I've met virtually. Thank you so much for your support!


Click below to watch the 2020 Year-End Review video and see some of my sessions from this year.
Follow me on Facebook and Instagram! Interested in booking a photo session with me? CLICK HERE to schedule your complimentary consultation.
<![CDATA[How to Get the Best Lighting For Video]]>Sun, 01 Nov 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/how-to-get-the-best-lighting-for-videoAre you struggling with getting the right lighting for your videos or while you are in a video conference?

I got some lighting tips for you that can help! Read on or watch the video at the end of the blog.
  1. Position yourself in front of a light source when you are on a video conference or recording a video.
  2. Try to avoid having any bright lights/or window behind you because you'll be in the shadow​ and people won't be able to see you clearly.
  3. Natural light is the best so place yourself in front of a window.
  4. If your room is dark and no matter what you do, you can't seem to get  yourself well lit in your videos. You will need to buy artificial lighting and a ring light is what I would recommend because they are really affordable.
  5. I recommend buying a ring light with 2 adjustments (one to adjust the temperature - cooler or warmer; and the other one is to adjust the brightness). I personally don't like the ring light with different filter sets that you have to change it manually.
  6. You can also buy a smaller ring light for your laptop or one that clips to a desk with a cellphone holder. This is great if you are moving around or do your videos in different places that need additional lighting.

I hope you find these tips helpful!

Don't feel like reading? Click here to watch the video instead.

If you like to get these short little 2-minute tips, subscribe to my YouTube channel!
<![CDATA[Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month]]>Thu, 01 Oct 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/pregnancy-and-infant-loss-awareness-month"I'm sorry but we couldn't find a heartbeat." These words still hurt even now.

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month and I hope my story will help other women who are also going through a loss. You are NOT alone in this and it is NOT your fault.
My husband and I were so excited to find out we were expecting in 2015. We went to our first OBGYN's visit at 6 weeks and heard the baby's heartbeat, it was the best sound we've ever heard!

During those time, of course, as new parents, we thought about names, our dreams for our baby, and our plan to announce to our family when we reached the 1st trimester.

At 8 weeks, we went back for a second doctor's visit. The nurse came in and started the routine checkup and she used the doppler to listen to the baby's heartbeat. She was searching and searching and couldn't hear anything. Then she brought in the sonogram machine and again, tried it for awhile and nothing.

We were concerned but didn't think much of it. The nurse said she'll be right back and then left. When the doctor came in and he said "I'm sorry but we couldn't find a heartbeat."
He explained to us that the sonogram machine confirmed that there is no heartbeat on the embryo. Unfortunately miscarriage do happen a lot during the 1st trimester and it is nothing that I did to cause this.

I remembered the feeling of falling, my heart hurts, and I simply couldn't think.

We went into his office and he told us there are few options we can do, wait it out until I have a miscarriage naturally, take a pill that would expedite the miscarriage or have a D&C (Dilation & Curettage) surgery. We were just too sad to make a decision so we went home to think about it.

The first words I spoke to my husband was "I'm so sorry." as we were walking to our car. This was the hardest moment of our lives.
After a few days, we've decided to go for the D&C surgery. It was the worst day of my life, I couldn't stop crying after I woke up from the surgery. There was a nurse there who was so sweet, she sat with me, shared her story and gave me lots of encouragements. 

I'm so grateful that I had people in my life, some who had gone through a miscarriage or baby loss, and they were there every step of the way to help my husband and I during this difficult time.

Then in 2016, we were blessed with a healthy baby girl. Now I'm a mom of 2 beautiful girls and every day I still remember about the one that I had lost.
​Photo Credit: Jordan Jankun Photography
Photo Credit: Jane DiMaggio Photography
If you or someone you know had a miscarriage or loss their baby, here are a few ways you can support them:
  1. Send meals to them. They may be too upset to even think about cooking or eating.
  2. Help them with chores - grocery shopping, laundry, etc.
  3. Listen to their stories especially when they are ready to share.
  4. Avoid saying "It's not meant to be." or "You have your other kids." or "They are in a better place." The best thing you can say to them is "I'm here for you." or a simple hug.

To those moms who are going through a pregnancy loss:
  1. Take your time to grieve.
  2. You are not alone and it is not your fault.
  3. Reach out to support groups or someone you know who had gone through a loss. Talk about it when you are ready.
  4. Read books that will help you to grieve. The book that had really helped me is "Growing Up in Heaven" by James Van Praagh.
October 15 is Pregnancy Remembrance Day, join me to light a candle at 7pm (all time zones) to create a wave of lights to remember all the babies who had gone too soon.

If you need someone to talk to, I'm here for you! Give me a call 201-663-8585 or email me at charissa@charissahyongphotography.
<![CDATA[Business Feature: Seimei Healing]]>Tue, 01 Sep 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/business-feature-seimei-healingHave you heard of Seimei? I haven't until I met Katie Fasciano, owner of Seimei Healing located in Westwood, New Jersey. It's a non-touch practice originated from Japan to ease pain, illness (common sore throat or cough), anxiety and more.

We met through networking and we instantly clicked! Not only we are mothers of girls, but we live and work in Westwood, New Jersey. 
She shared her emotional story of losing her eldest daughter to cancer and how she had found Seimei.

She had given me a demonstration on Seimei to ease my lower back pain, which was bothering me after I had my second daughter. It was amazing! Instant relief! I've been her client ever since and I knew I had to do a business feature on this amazing practice.

So read on and find out more about Katie and her amazing services.
A woman putting her hands over her clients to perform Seimei, a non touch healing practice.
Disclaimer: My client and I were comfortable with removing our masks and held our breath during each shot to capture this.
Charissa: Can you tell me about your business and what you do?
Katie: My business is a holistic practice featuring a technique called Seimei. My passion is helping children with cancer and their families. Seimei helps improve physical and emotional symptoms. It's a technique that is non-touch. The person sits in a chair as the practitioner works around them. Seimei can be done for both acute and chronic symptoms. Acute symptoms usually resolve with one Seimei session. Chronic symptoms usually take a series of Seimei sessions. These sessions can be done virtually.
Charissa: What is your absolute favorite moment in your business?
My absolute favorite moment in my business is at the end of a Seimei session when a client is relieved of their symptom.
Charissa: What is the one tip that you would like to share?
There are Charms that are used with Seimei that anyone can use. Please reach out to find out more about it.
Charissa: Where can people follow you and find more information about your business?
You can find out about my services on www.seimeihealing.com. You can also follow me on social media - Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn
Need a photography service? Give me a call 201-663-8585 or email me at charissa@charissahyongphotography to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Visit my website to see my portfolio and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram!
<![CDATA[Coordinating or Matching Outfits?]]>Mon, 03 Aug 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/coordinating-or-matching-outfitsChoosing your outfits for your photo session can be stressful! I completely understand that feeling because I book a professional photographer for my own family session every year and I have to choose outfits for everyone.

Should you go matching or coordinating? Well...let's dive into it.
Matching outfits means that everyone will be wearing the same thing. For example: White tops and jeans for the entire family or mom & daughter are wearing the same dress while dad & son are wearing the same polo shirt and khaki pants.

If that's not the look you want for your photo session, then you want to coordinate your outfits, which is usually what I would recommend.
​When you coordinate your outfits, choose 2-3 main colors, and maybe one accent pop of color. Mixing stripes and floral with plaids and tweeds would work great together.

Start with one outfit that you love and build from there for everyone else.

Laying the outfits on a flat surface or a bed with all the accessories (jewelry, scarfs, shoes, etc.) will help you figure out if the outfits look good together or not.
Need a photography service? Give me a call 201-663-8585 or email me at charissa@charissahyongphotography to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Visit my website to see my portfolio and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram!
<![CDATA[Feature: International Women's Day Business Summit (March 6, 2020)]]>Wed, 01 Jul 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/feature-international-womens-day-business-summit-march-6-2020March 8th, 2020 was International Women's Day.

I celebrated early being a Her Story Sponsor at the International Women's Day Business Summit on March 6th, 2020 (hosted by the North Jersey Chamber of Commerce and title sponsor NJ Advanced Media). It was held in the beautiful Valley Regency in Clifton, New Jersey. The venue is as beautiful as I remembered when I attended a wedding here probably 10 years ago.
As a sponsor, I got there early to setup my table and the headshots station because I was offering a headshot mini during the event.

I was also able to spend some time getting to know the other sponsors and panelists in the VIP mimosa happy hour prior to the start of the event.
The event started around 11am with a delicious brunch, open networking and Her Story Sponsor visits.
We were really excited to meet Miss Monmouth, Adele Ann Taylor (as a key note speaker) and I took a headshot picture of her! I was truly honored! She is so smart and her speech was so inspirational!
There were two sessions of the women panel discussions with some strong female entrepreneurs who shared their stories and tips that was so motivational to hear and learn from them. I'm so glad I took part in this unforgettable event!
At the end of the event, each sponsors has a prize for a raffle drawing and Thania Arango from M&T Bank in Wayne, New Jersey won my raffle of 2 AMC tickets and $50 gift certificate. Congratulations!

I can't wait to attend the next event in 2021 and being a part of this amazing women community. Thank you North Jersey Chamber of Commerce for hosting!!
We offer corporate and non-profit event photography.

To find out more information and get a quote, please 
email me at charissa@charissahyongphotography to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Visit my website to see my portfolio and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram!
<![CDATA[The Importance of Printing Your Pictures.]]>Mon, 15 Jun 2020 04:00:00 GMThttp://charissahyongphotography.com/blog/the-importance-of-printing-your-pictures​If you are my clients or have been following me on social media, you know how much I love to educate my clients, family, and friends the importance of printing your pictures, whether it’s on prints, canvas or an album. 

I'm going to share 3 reasons why you should think about printing out your family pictures.
​Why? Here are a few reasons:

1) TECHNOLOGY CAN FAIL – Your hard drive or your phone storage can fail, even if you back it up on the cloud. But if you print your pictures, they will be there even if you lost it digitally.

2) PICTURES SIT ON THE CLOUD – How many of us take so many pictures, stored it on the cloud or hard drive and never look at it again? Most of us I bet. If you print out the pictures, especially in an album, you definitely will look at them more often. My daughter will look at a photo album at least once a day.

3) FAMILY TRADITION – Why not print out your pictures, get a scrapbook, stickers, all the fun decorations and make a yearly family album out of it. You’re making memories while creating a family heirloom that you can cherish for years to come.
​If you need help in designing your family album, email me at charissa@charissahyongphotography to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Visit my website to see my portfolio and be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram!