Holiday Gift Guide 2018

We are so excited to share our first ever Portraits that Move Holiday Gift Guide! To celebrate the season, we have put together a list of gifts that reflect the beauty and joy of documenting family life and the small moments that make it so special.

We are featuring these products because we love how they connect with what is important to us and we think that you will, too. None of these products have paid for placement on our site, and we do not receive any compensation for linking to third party products.

Grandparent and Grandchild Keepsake Letter Book Set

Image via  Uncommon Goods

Image via Uncommon Goods

Created by Knoxville, Tennessee based artist Whitney Biggs, this letter book set gives children and grandparents the chance to connect with each other through storytelling.

Using storytelling to connect across generations is something we love! It’s part of what inspired us to create our Generations Videos, and it is just the kind of thing that keeps the magic of the holidays going well beyond the end of the season.

Letters to My Future Self

Image via  Amazon

Image via Amazon

Document your own story through letter writing with the Letters to My Future Self kit. This is a wonderful gift for a friend or family member who loves to write, to document, and to build their own story.

Conversations with My Father and Mother

Image via  Uncommon Goods

Image via Uncommon Goods

These lovely books are a perfect place for your family to write down the conversations that make up the history of our lives. We are huge believers in the power of conversation, especially conversations with kids, in documenting family life and preserving our memories for ourselves and for future generations.

Comic Book Pop Art from Photos

Image via  MyDaVinci

Image via MyDaVinci

Give your loved ones a totally unique gift, in the style of Roy Lichtenstein pop art from MyDaVinci. Submit your photo and they create a pop art version of the image for display in your home. You can choose from a variety of size and framing options, and you can even add a talk bubble!

Illustory

Image via  Amazon

Image via Amazon

Give kids the chance to tell their story in their own words inside a book they design and create themselves. This is a gift many times over, from an activity to keep kids entertained over holiday break, to a keepsake that your family will enjoy for years to come.

In our experience creating videos for families, you are guaranteed for a treat when you give kids the chance - and the space - to share their stories in any form.

Custom Family Video

Give your loved ones the gift of a Portraits that Move Gift Card. Available in any denomination, up to the full price of a Signature Portrait Video, our gift card makes it easier for families to get their own custom heirloom quality video that documents the treasured moments of their lives right now.


Kid Quotes Memory Book

Image via  Uncommon Goods

Image via Uncommon Goods

Oh, the things kids say! Write down the funniest and most poignant quotes from your kids in the new year in this adorable Kid Quotes Memory Book created by Colorado-based graphic designer Amy Taylor.

We love celebrating the things kids say, and we know better than anyone that you absolutely will forget what you don’t document. This is the perfect gift for yourself or for another parent who will appreciate a place to store their kids’ comments, from the whimsical, to the witty, to the wise.

My Family Cookbook

Image via  Uncommon Goods

Image via Uncommon Goods

Preserve your family’s precious recipes - and the memories that go along with them - in My Family Cookbook. This book give you a place to gather all your favorite recipes, along with the photos and stories that go with them.

Invite family members to contribute, or use it as a chance to gather your family and work on creating the cookbook together. This is the perfect gift for new couples, or for young adults heading off to college or starting out in new cities.

Mixtiles

Image via  Mixtiles

Image via Mixtiles

We love this affordable way to turn your family photos into gallery walls! This is a great project to enjoy putting together as a family. Involve your kids in choosing the photos to print and in creating the gallery wall in your home.

Tiles can be moved around easily so it’s a fun, interactive way to tell your family’s story through photography you create.

Parenting Misadventures Journal

Image via  Uncommon Goods

Image via Uncommon Goods

Know a new mom or dad with a good sense of humor about the parenting journey? This book is for them!

Write down everything from the crazy advice you got before baby arrived to the epic tantrums in Target because, believe it or not, you don’t want to forget those moments either. It’s all part of your history, and it will make you laugh… eventually.

Rememory Game

Image via  Uncommon Goods .

Image via Uncommon Goods.

This holiday gift combines two things we love - family games and family memories. The Rememory Game is a fun way to recall family stories and memories and to introduce the next generation to your family’s treasured stories and moments.

Celebrate the Season with Portraits that Move

We’re celebrating YOU and making it easier than ever to share the Portraits that Move experience with your friends and family.

Special Offer Black Friday through Cyber Monday

Celebrate the season with savings from Portraits that Move. Purchase a $500 gift card for $200 starting Black Friday, through Small Business Saturday, all the way to Cyber Monday!

Purchase a gift card for yourself or as a gift for others now through Monday, 11/26, at 11:59 p.m. EST. Use promo code CELEBRATE at checkout or call directly: 917-750-0031.

Happy gifting!


How Can I Make Holiday Cards Easy this Year?

Is is just us or is 2018 flying by on the wings of To Do Lists?!?

If it’s not one thing, it’s the next, with careers, kids, families, projects, obligations, challenges (we see you, parental burnout). The holiday season is coming up fast, and, if you feel like that brings with it another competing To Do List, you are not alone.

easy holiday cards

Now is the time of year when you start looking at every photo from summer vacation, fall break, back to school, and last Tuesday, with that critical eye, thinking…

“We should do a holiday card collage!”

“Let’s combine our own photos with professional holiday card photos!!”

“Look, we can add a photo ornament to our holiday card!!!”

“How much are stamps?”

After days of planning, you realize you spent all your energy trying to imprint something and all your time packaging it. You have no time to enjoy the cards or the moments they’re supposed to capture. The holiday card that you painstakingly designed, packaged and sent is another item checked off your list. And there are so many more items stacking up.

You gave yourself more work and less joy. Your holiday card didn’t preserve a moment from this busy year. It didn’t give you a real sense of who your kids are right now - who they became over the past year.

Try Something New this Holiday Card Season

Carve out a few hours, invite us to your home or a favorite neighborhood spot. We’ll talk with you and your kids. We’ll slow down time for a little while, and in the end, you will have the perfect, moving holiday card video.

holiday card video

No stress, no stamps. Ready to share with friends and family, and with each other, when you just need a minute to count your blessings and see how great your life really is (buys-ness and all).

Schedule your holiday card video shoot or contact us with questions: 917-750-0031.

Where should I schedule my holiday video card shoot?

We've been asked by some of our clients about the best places to shoot a holiday card video.  Over the years, we have found that the most important thing is for your kids to be comfortable.  After all, our holiday video cards are as much about celebrating the season and the milestones of the year in your family's life as they are about giving your children the opportunity to speak freely and comfortably about how they are feeling and what they are experiencing at this exciting, sometimes frantic, hopefully magical time of year.

holiday card video

Sometimes that means scheduling our holiday video card shoot outdoors at your favorite park, where we can get the full beauty of the autumn leaves and catch your kids in action running, feeling free, and enjoying a place that is special to them.

Other times, it means scheduling a family video shoot at home, where your kids can show off some of their favorite toys, tell us the stories behind their favorite holiday decorations, and feel totally comfortable in the space you have made for them.

video cards custom holiday cards portraits that move

Wherever you choose to schedule your holiday video card shoot, we will be there to help you celebrate your family, your year, and the unique and beautiful voices of your children.  

That's our kind of holiday magic.

We are all booked up for this weekend, 11/4.  Reserve your spot for Sunday, 11/19 by filling out our registration form or calling us directly: 917-750-0031

Modern Answer to the Snailmail Family Newsletter

Do you remember your mom writing holiday newsletters every year?  Do you remember reading the letters from her college roommates, following the lives of families you may never have met but felt you knew?

Fewer and fewer of those beloved newsletters arrive in the mail, thanks to social media, our busy lives, and the picture-perfect cards that so many of our friends and family seem to favor.

With that, some of the magic has been lost.  We've lost the chance to make a special connection around the holidays, to celebrate along with family and friends, and to share the accomplishments, changes and milestones that make up a year in the life of every family.

Our Portraits that Move team has come up with the answer.  Our Holiday Video Card lets you and your children talk about what happened over the whole year in your own words.

We're using modern ways to recapture traditional experiences of family, love, celebration and connection.  And our clients and their friends and families are loving it.

At the end of the day, the beauty of new technologies are that they offer us new ways to tell our stories.  The Portraits that Move Video Holiday Card is our cool, modern answer to snailmail family newsletter.  It is also a beautiful way to celebrate and remember a year in the life of your family.

Create your Portraits that Move Video Holiday Card

There is no better time to create your family's video holiday card.  The fall weather is gorgeous, and we are sure you have much news to share!  

Schedule your 90 minute holiday video film shoot on one of our two remaining days: Saturday, November 4, or Sunday, November 19.
 

Love and Happiness through Their Eyes

I love documenting our families in the everyday, ordinary paths of their lives. It gives me a clear window into who they are, what is important to them and what makes them happy.

It is even more meaningful then, when we are given an opportunity to document a family for a special celebration. One of our clients, Emily, asked us to document her daughter, Violet as a wedding gift for her best friend. We were thrilled at the idea of this video and the process was joyous from beginning to end.

When I arrived and asked Violet about her aunt, she had so much to tell me. It was clear that she has been deeply loved by her and that their connection is a close one. It was incredible to capture these feelings and to document this moment for Emily’s friend. It is a treasure for her.

The final Portrait Video is exuberant, filled with love and a child’s perspective on marriage. It got me thinking about all of the different types of celebrations we could make videos for and about. What could be better than that?

I hope you enjoy watching Violet talk about love as much I enjoyed asking her about it.

Love and Thanks for Sharing a Beautiful Year with Us

Dear Friends,

2016 has been such a wonderful year for us. We were thrilled to release new kinds of videos from Portraits that Move including our Generations Video, the Portraits that Move Baby Video and our brand new gift card (perfect for your last minute holiday gifts!).

We worked with several families for the third year in a row and wrote many blog posts - including some for A Child Grows in Brooklyn.

We were also lucky enough to be featured in Forbes, Working Mother Magazine, the Women Killing It podcast, and NPR's Only Human.

last minute holiday gifts for families

Most of all, though, we were so blessed to have spent time with you and your families. We love all of our time with you and can’t believe our good fortune of getting to do this work. It is deeply fulfilling to share a moment in time with you, to get to know your children and to share in their brilliance. Thank you so much for trusting us, for believing in what we do and for sharing our work with your friends and family.

I want to wish you and yours a happy and healthy holiday season. May it be one that is filled with magic, joy, shimmer and hope.

We look forward to sharing some new things with you in 2017.

Until then, thank you, thank you!

With deep love and gratitude,

Susannah and the Portraits That Move Team

What Do You Really Need this Holiday Season?

The lists are long.  A list for entertaining, a list for baking, a list for gift giving, our children's wishlists that seem to get added to every day....

In this crush of planning and shopping and rushing towards the moments we want to remember, we know that at some point we will end up feeling lost and overwhelmed, as if all that we are supposed to be enjoying is passing us by. 

So how do we slow it down?  How do we find a way to give what really matters, what our loved ones really want?

We focus on the moment.

Think about why we are rushing and planning and making lists for the perfect gift, the perfect meal, the perfect celebration.  It is because we want to treasure our families.  We know this time is fleeting and we want to embrace it, celebrate it and slow it down enough to enjoy it, to look back on it with a warm heart, and with a calm heart.

custom family video gifts holiday gift ideas

This is what we do at Portraits that Move, we help you to slow down and savor the moment.  We help you to give the gift of more time with your family, the gift of celebrating who you are and who you are becoming together, every day.  

For the ones you love on your list, for your own family, choose the gift that we all want, the gift we all need, a moment in time that celebrates your children, your family, your life, right now, before this moment, before this holiday season, slips away.

Portraits that Move Gift Card

Our new Portraits that Move Gift Card is the perfect way for those of you who love what we do to give the gift of Portraits that Move in an affordable way, helping to make it easier for all the people on your gift giving list to own a Portrait Video or any of our other offerings by offsetting the cost, or by gifting the full price of the product.

Portraits that Move Signature Portrait

Give the gift of our Signature Portrait, what one mom calls "the perfect holiday gift."

Portraits that Move Holiday Video Card

Perfect for sending New Year greetings and holiday messages and guaranteed to be enjoyed by all the family and friends you want to share your love with, near and far.

The Joy of Watching Our Children Grow

This year we have had the great blessing of working with some of our Portraits that Move families for the third year in a row. It is an incredible experience and all that I hoped it would be when I started Portraits That Move.

It is fantastic to talk to our children about what moves them, inspires them and motivates them. I love hearing about all of their feelings and observing how their interests and passions change from year to year. I am able to see the incremental change in a way that you as their parent may not always recognize. I think it is also fun for the kids. They are excited to tell me things - to show me how they have grown.

I am a person that has a heightened sense of the passage of time. As a result of the health challenges that I have had, I have always had an intense awareness of the fragility of life and the quick passage of time.  I want to preserve moments in time for you, for your family and for your children’s children.

The families that work with us year after year love having a personal catalog of our work. They enjoy both the process and the final family videos. I feel grateful for the trust they extend to me to listen to and connect with their children. I am grateful to parents for inviting me to capture the passage of time, to give the gift of time back to them, and to their children.  

The work we do, creating custom documentary quality videos of families, is a gift to each of us as Portraits that Move filmmakers. As we enter into the holiday season, I look forward to giving that gift to all of you. 

Add Movement to Your Holiday Cards

Time is moving more quickly than ever, Back to School season has shifted into the daily intense busy-ness that makes up our lives as parents, and the holidays are just around the corner. 

This year, our Portraits that Move team is dedicated to helping make your holiday season moving, in every sense of the word.  We want to make it as easy, and as enjoyable as possible for you to create and share the perfect holiday message for your family and to move through the season with no stress and plenty of celebration.

Our Portraits that Move video holiday card is the alternative to traditional holiday cards that you have been looking for.  No more stress over staging and snapping picture-perfect moments, no more distilling the growth and energy and excitement of an entire year into a single image or a collage that never feels complete.  With our video holiday cards, your friends and family can hear and see your kids as they really are, a moving holiday greeting, and a gift to everyone on your mailing list.

To make things even easier, for our clients who live in and around NYC, we will be hosting two days of Holiday Card Video Sessions, starting at $600.  Sign up now and get your entire holiday greeting taken care of, by us.  We film, we edit, and we deliver the link directly to you, ready to share.

These are our only dates for video holiday card filming and they fill up quickly, so reach out now to secure your place.

Video Holiday Card Sessions with Portraits that Move

Spots are limited, register now for your Video Holiday Card Session

Saturday, October 15

TIME: 10am - 4pm (2 hour slots)
PLACE: YOUR HOME

Name *
Name

Sunday, November 6

TIME: 10AM- 6PM (2 HOUR SLOTS)

PLACE: YOUR HOME 

Name *
Name

Last Minute Holiday Gifts that Last a Lifetime

Stuck on what to get your family for the holidays and running out of time?  Our Portraits that Move team of filmmakers has the answer for that last minute holiday gift for grandparents, spouses and your family.

We are still booking Moving Portraits, our longer, documentary-style films that celebrate your kids as they are right now, in their own voices, as well as Snapshot Portraits and custom video holiday cards.

last minute holiday gifts custom video family

 

Parents have called a custom video from Portraits that Move "a perfect holiday gift" and shared that our Portrait video "brings so much joy every time we watch it."

Holiday Gift Guides

A Child Grows in Brooklyn has included Portraits that Move in their Holiday Gift Guide 2015, along with some other great local businesses that offer creative, custom holiday gifts and giftable experiences for anyone lucky enough to be on your holiday shopping list.

Don't forget about the grandparents!  Whether near or far, there is nothing a grandparent loves more than reveling in - and sharing - their grandchildren.  That's why Cool Mom Picks listed us in their Holiday Gift Guide for Grandparents 2014.

Book Your Shoot

Contact our filmmaker team today to schedule your holiday video photo shoot at your home or a location of your choice.

Week of Giving - Portaits that Heal

Here at Portraits that Move, we have decided to turn #GivingTuesday into a Giving Week!  We are celebrating #GivingWeek because our team is excited by the idea of sharing what we do and helping families and children who suffer with illness to have a voice.  This week we are highlighting several organizations that serve and support children. The organization we have been working with most closely is Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, a national non-profit that funds childhood cancer research.

Recently, we created a portrait video celebrating Zach, one of the Alex's Lemonade Stand Heroes.   Zach is an athlete, a kid who loves baseball, swimming and his trampoline. He loves feeding chickens on the farm where he lives with his family.  In telling Zach’s story, we have created a keepsake for his family and a portrait of his strength. We are also helping to share the mission and the work of Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation to encourage and support an organization that does so much good for children and their families.

For us filmmakers, spending time with Zach was a huge gift. Zach's mother calls him a “High Octane Boy,” and we experienced his zest for life first hand. We loved the day we spent with him and hope that the experience of telling his story was healing to him.

Give Forward - #GivingWeek and Beyond with Portraits that Heal

What child do you know that you think would benefit from their story being told? How could we help further their healing by sharing their story?  Contact us about gifting a healing portrait from Portraits that Heal.

Can your organization advance its mission by helping kids share their stories? Tell us about the work you do and bring our professional, award winning filmmakers out to better help those you serve. 

In this season of giving, it is our great privilege to give hope, joy and voice through Portraits that Heal.

The Perfect Holiday Gift - A Parent's Story

My husband travels all the time for work. And my parents and in-laws live far away.  Portraits That Move allowed me to finally get all of them what they really wanted for Christmas:  more time with my children.

We shot the first video a few weeks before Christmas last year.  I didn’t let anyone in the family see one of the website’s sample finished products so no one was really sure what they were doing.  Nevertheless the kids had a great time with Susannah and Rafe, who both made them feel special and managed to capture them perfectly.   They were in our house for just a couple of hours, chatting with the children and watching them go about their day. We also spent time outdoors at a nearby soccer field.  I’m sure the neighbors were surprised to see a small video crew following us to the park!

video holiday gift review portraits that move

The finished product arrived just before St. Nick, on Christmas Eve before everyone went to bed.  All the stars aligned and I was able to get the Apple TV to work so that the whole family could watch their Christmas present. And it was beautiful. The video was amazing and everyone sniffled with joy.

But the joy didn’t end there.  Everyone has continued to watch the video throughout the year.  My parents admit to firing it up when they feel far away in Florida. And my husband keeps it at the bottom of his email. At night in his hotel rooms, when he’s working though the last emails of the day, he rewards himself with a view of the video. He watches it almost every night when he’s on the road.

portraits that move review

With such success, there could be no question that we had to do another video this year.  Susannah and Rafe came back to our house, having prepped by re-watching last year’s video.  They came with new questions and new ideas about how to best reflect our household. And again they were fun and warm and the kids had a great time.  I’m certain that this year’s video will also be a delight.  And I can’t wait for Christmas eve.

Custom Family Video Highlight: The Kelkar Family's Holiday Video from Portraits that Move

We loved making a moving portrait video of the Kelkar family that celebrates their children and the holidays.  Getting to know families and giving children the chance to talk about what is most important to them - what makes them happy, what they love about their families, who they are right now, this year, in this moment - is a gift we celebrate all year long. 

Give the Gift of Portraits that Move this Holiday Season

For a holiday present your family will treasure, gift a Snapshot Video or a full Moving Portrait, fully customized mini films created by award winning filmmakers that celebrate your children just as they are.