Magical Christmas Portraits (Trinity Design Whitby)

Magical Christmas Portraits (Trinity Design Whitby)

Time is ticking on a child’s belief in Santa. While true it might continue after the age or 8 to 10 it’s rare for it to last much longer (insert the sadness here from all parents/grandparents). So when our 8 year old, who last spring announced he knew about the “Santa thing” we thought our third had joined the ranks of the children who carry the secret of “believing” for the younger kids.

When he sat down this October and announced he needed to be “good for Santa” our family saw a reprieve – courtesy I would like to think from some Christmas magic from the big guy himself. (Yes, some of us still believe).

Shown above is the holiday version of our White Box experience – a different take on family photos. Also a collage composite this has been a mainstay of our studio for the past three years at holiday times and year round.

We just added this third composite to the collection because we “believe” in magical portraits at Christmas. All three are amazing backgrounds from the magical Tara Mapes collection.

I am in love with the simple magic of the window and our third “believer” with his letter to Santa which by tradition was mailed through our studio mailbox (it works every time).

If you are interested in a holiday portrait with us we thought it would be helpful to show you how they work. Each child or pet is captured in their holiday finest in the studio. We then hand edit a magical portrait using the talented and gorgeous digital composites we own – the window and roof by Tara Mapes.

Our studio has a lot of Christmas accessories, a number of Roots Cabin Sweaters and other items you can borrow for portraits should you need it. That being said we do encourage you to bring your own special holiday items and PJs/robes. These touches can make it a much more personal story for your Christmas keepsake portraits.

Our lovely girl Sydney is a secret operative of Santa. Unlike the house eleves her job is to extend the season of belief with her boys. We created this portrait to show her explaining to Santa that yes her assignment was going very well and her youngest boy is a believer again. The story is literally melting my heart and this will be a printed keepsake for years to come in our family.

Sydney loves to watch for Santa in the window, she’s a magical addition to our family.

To book a spot in the studio connect with us as soon as you can – our supplier deadlines are fast approaching. Connect via our website form: Book the Magic of Christmas

Kirsten McGoey | Visual Storyteller | Trinity Design Photography

What to expect when booking White Box family portraits

What to expect when booking White Box family portraits

Our Whitby, Ontario based studio has been making simple and modern family portraits for over 5 years in Durham Region. Our award winning studio creates modern family portraits, business imagery and magazine photography.


The White Box experience is one such experience, popular in past years for:

  • it’s simplicity,
  • the interactions between the collage items
  • inspirational for young and old, men and women, and children
  • it can also incorporate young babies into the process.

For this blog post I thought I would walk you through what to expect when booking a White Box experience.

Step One – “The Sitting” (Seasonal)

The first step involves booking your seating. Seatings cover the time and talents of the photographer – editing and files are purchased separately.

For larger groups we have packages to accommodate up to 15 persons in a single session experience and are priced in our single session format for large or extended families.

Step Two -“The Booking”

The next step is to book your spot. Trinity Design Photography now books seasonal experiences through Facebook events or by connecting with us online here. Once you purchase a spot online we then confirm your booking by sending you the following documents through our Client Portal system:

  • Invoice confirmation (showing payment and scope of work/deliverables)
  • Questionnaire – a little getting to know you form
  • Contract – this must be signed for images to be edited and delivered
  • Preparation Document – outlining the best way to get ready for this particular experience
  • Emails about session date and time, location, etc.

The Client Portal feature allows you to locate all this information in one online location only viewable to Trinity Design Photography and yourself.

Step Three – “The Experience Session”

On the day of your session Trinity Design Photography asks all of the above paperwork is submitted ahead of time. This is key as this is a transaction that requires acknowledgement of the terms of sale and the deliverables.

During your session Kirsten will capture a series of about 60-70 frames of your family. This will include a few “everyone in” shots, groupings such as parent-child, parent-parent and other combinations, and we also capture individual frames to showcase each persons special story.

For example, for a child that dances perhaps a box where they do a special dance move. For parents who love gaming a shot of you both playing with X-Box remote controls, another parent who reads relaxing with a book and coffee cup, the parent who does triathlons, the child who loves to explore space with his telescope and and so many more stories we could never fully express all the options in one blog post.

Capturing the images or “frames” takes about 15-20 minutes – we work with you according to a plan or freestyle the session. It’s really up to you, Trinity Design Photography has captured about 60 of these to date.

Step Four – “The Cull”

carlton-frameNot as eerie as it sounds Kirsten culls the 60-70 frames into 30 frames that she then transform into lightly edited proofs. As this is a collaborative and visual exercise Trinity Design Photography prints the proofs for each session as well as loading them into our online ordering platform in advance of your session.

Culling and preparation takes about 2-4 weeks to get the materials ready for your Reveal and Ordering Session.

Step Five – “Your Reveal and Ordering Session”

Having the lightly edited proofs has transformed the experience of creating your collage and the ordering experience. Clients have told us this was one of the most rewarding parts of the experience with us because they could move the squares around to create the collage they envisioned. Of course if you are stuck and need a hand Kirsten is there to assist you.

flushmount-whiteboxThe added bonus is clients can take home the proofs either by purchasing them or with an order over $299+HST. The proofs are a fun item to hang on a modern clothes pin line. Each order of a collage also gives you a digital version to share on social media.

Kirsten walks you through the ordering process to create the perfect mounted collage artwork and/or products for your family. Trinity Design Photography’s store has so many options and we do not want to stop the creative process here. We can design a piece with you that will suit your space perfectly.

Step Six – “Why we encourage Printed Experiences”

Printing the experience is the final step in the process whereby we take the experience and preserve it into the artwork you will share for years to come with your family. Research shows that children’s esteem grows by having family images on the wall * according to studies completed on the benefits of family photography.

I think it is really important to show a family as a family unit. It is so helpful for children to see themselves as a valued and important part of that family unit.” – Design A Glow Article

Or for more information CONNECT with us.

Kirsten McGoey |Visual Storyteller | | | 905.925.7529

Reference: * Design A Glow Article

The Magic of Shoot and Share

The Magic of Shoot and Share

We have had the Shoot and Share application for over a year now and love how easy it makes showing clients how their images will appear on the walls of their OWN homes and offices. Here are the simple steps to have a mockup done for your home:

  • Tape an 8.5×11 sheet of paper to the wall you wish to mount your image(s) on.
  • We will use that sheet to measure so our mock up is to scale.
  • Let us know the sizing you are considering.
  • We will add that to the wall.
  • We can also help you work out wall clusters and photo walls.
  • Once complete we send you a mock up like the one shown here for a recent client (permission to show).

Print the experience with this handy tool so you get the right size for your home. Handy rules of thumb are anything with three seats needs at least 16×20 or larger depending on the design and layout of your home to not look too small on your wall.

Need help? Email us your requirements to “” or call us @ 905.925.7529 during business hours M to F 9 to 2 or set up a call outside of those hours.

Kirsten McGoey, Visual Storyteller

Thinking INSIDE the box.

Thinking INSIDE the box.

I fell in love with the white box session idea three years ago when I was given the challenge by a client. We did a plain brown cardboard box and used natural light – it was a fun session – but I knew in time I could achieve more if and when the studio was built.
Fast forward to 2016 and we have a lovely 500 square foot studio space in the lower level of our home that is primed and ready for this kind of work. We have a huge box big enough to hold a family five (tight fit) or each one of you – showcasing your individual talents, playing with modern and simple shapes and styling.
This is our first test – we did this one for our annual Christmas card – which because of the constant stream of work coming in 2016 will likely be a NEW YEARS CARD. These sessions will not be Christmas themed but you get the idea of the possibilities for a visual storyteller such as myself with a penchant for the modern look.
Each boy is featured. we engaged some shots using “observation” techniques – looking around the corner, looking up (we have others too in archive that were waving down). We used real hand stands and faked ones – oh and last time I checked my eldest cannot hang from the ceiling like a spider.
Since then we have done over 25 families in the box and we love the results, in fact we will be back in full force to do the for one of our two “The Christmas Experience” offerings.white-box-trinity-design-whitby
Clients have embraced this fun session with families ranging from young kids, to teens and even grandparents coming in to tell their story with us. We have seen baseball players, ballerinas, soccer fans and baseball fans, Harry Potter addicts, readers and just plain silly, family fun inside the box.
Want in on the action? Want to tell your family story? Sunday April 2, 2017 (White Box 3, Easter or Family Theme) – we have two spots that opened up due to severe illness, check out our event:
Capture the experience. Book your experience session today  by calling 905.925.7529 or email us @

Kirsten McGoey, Visual Storyteller


Thinking INSIDE the box!

Life inside the big, white box.

While inside the box the white environment invites you to dress in bright colours (colours we might ask you to avoid in a regular session), crazy poses (we might even push your collage a little further and rotate your pose sideways or upside-down) and using a collage format to combine a series of these “vignettes” to create a “story” about your family.

The environment of the box let’s us capture the experience for you that, one, shows each person in your family’s own loves. Two, it let’s us play in-between boxes to create interconnection and, three, it weaves together a story of your family’s NOW.

The NOW of loving monster trucks, baseball and the Blue Jays, acro and ballet dance, reading, riding your new red scooter. It shows the size of a little man in your lap, the way he likes to squish his toes, Dad’s beard and mom’s epic eye roll.

Each session is unique – each person in your family – parents, children, pets  – all get their own box, their own part in the “digital quilting” of your collage (a great client referred to them this way recently and she was bang on).

We also have a very special goal in 2017 to #capturetheeadults and #capturetheparents. All parents are encouraged to stop hiding from the lens and get in the frame with their kids. I am doing this exact thing getting in front of the lens more and more myself this year – telling my “part” of the story.

We are running our last “The White Box Experience” this spring on April 2, 2017 and as of writing this post we have two extra spots we added on to that event.

The White Box will be back for a “The Christmas Experience” run, join our email list to be one of the first to book in for these seasonal experiences. We already have four spots spoken for since January! Click here to join our list.

Kirsten McGoey, Visual Storyteller