I'm every bit of an amateur at photography and even more so when it comes to studio photography. I have an eye for composition, lighting, and what I want to accomplish, but knowing how to technically accomplish it is another story. But that's what practice is for.
Last year I bought a light stand, a cheap umbrella, and made an effort to get my flash off my camera. This year, I purchased some PVC pipe to build my own backdrop stand and a couple of rolls of backdrop paper as well as another cheap umbrella that has a nice white diffuser. I think I have $200 in all of that, which isn't much at all. I like to take baby steps into things by buying cheap gear until I know I can get the hang of it in order to assess whether I even want to mess with it. However, my remote flash triggers were acting crazy and not always working for me. It's either the cheapness showing through or my amateur status showing through. A bit of both I'm sure.
My father-in-law needed some professional head shots for his business and asked me to take them, which I did and they turned out pretty good. While I had everything out, I thought I'd take some shots with my kiddos. These are some of my favorites from the bunch even though I wouldn't say they're great photos, especially from a lighting perspective.
Be careful, Owen's bright blue eyes are like lasers.