Category Archives: General Frameable Faces Updates

It’s The Frameable Faces 2015 Campus Tour!

Every now and then you need to go back to school right?  Well that’s just what we did with the Frameable Faces 2015 Campus Tour!  This year’s tour included stops in Ann Arbor and East Lansing and we had a blast hanging out with some of our favorite former seniors!  High School senior pictures are so fun for us and we get pretty close to many of our seniors so it’s really special for us to be able to visit them up at college!

First Stop – Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan Wolverines!!!

We made Ann Arbor our first stop where we met at Pizza House just like the 2013 tour, where we hung out, ate some yummy pizza and garlic bread.  Nicole Davidson (Frameable Faces class of 2011), Jarred Bratley and Cheyenne Stone (FF class of 2012), and Mara Cranis and Alanah Bratley (FF class of 2014) all met us and we caught up for a while.

2015 Campus Tour

2015 Campus Tour

Afterwards it was time to get over to Insomnia Cookies for a little dessert – YUM!

2015 Campus Tour

All in all a great day!  GO BLUE!

Next Stop – East Lansing and the Michigan State Spartans!!!

Our next stop was a dicey proposition because we planned it for a Sunday evening on the weekend of the Elite 8 and if the Spartans won on Friday they would be playing on Sunday – we just didn’t know when.  As it turned out they won and were scheduled to play on Sunday at 2, so when we rolled into town for dinner at El Azteco, the campus was buzzing since the Spartans had just punched their ticket to the Final Four.  Chelsea Cage (FF class of 2011) and Bri Dines (FF class of 2013) met us for a topopo salad feast – just like we did on the 2013 tour.

2015 Campus Tour

2015 Campus Tour

This time around we decided to change it up a bit for dessert though and go to the MSU Dairy Store for ice cream.  They have flavors in honor of the different Big Ten schools, so I got a scoop of Maize-N-Berry on top of a scoop of Buckeye Blitz.  Ha!  Delish!

2015 Campus Tour

2015 Campus Tour

Always remember if you’re the one taking the group selfie to cut off half of your face like our daughter Lacey did above – it’s a thing…  No really – it is.

One last point to make here – we are so proud of Nicole and Chelsea – the two seniors in the group.  Nicole is graduating from U of M and is continuing on to med school, and Chelsea is graduating from MSU and has been hired by General Motors!  So there it is – the 2015 Frameable Faces Campus Tour – one of our favorite things to do!

2014 Was A Wonderful and Frameable Year!

2014 was a wonderful and “Frameable” year that we won’t soon forget and in many ways it was the best year yet for Frameable Faces!  As we charge into what should only be the best, happiest and healthiest 2015 possible for ALL of our peeps – we take a happy look back at the past year!

The Class of 2015 Spokesmodels

Okay so the fact that we assembled a new crew of spokesmodels wasn’t something unique to 2014 since we do that every year, but every class is indeed unique and this one was no exception!  A bigger class than usual, we really fell in love with this group and ended up with some great new friends out of it – not just friends of the studio but of our family.  We spent a good part of our winter and spring photographing these awesome seniors and I was playing with the panorama function on my iPhone camera the whole time.  Let’s reveal all of the behind-the-scenes panoramas from those sessions together here – these aren’t professional shots and they aren’t filtered or retouched but together they are kind of neat!

2014 201420142014201420142014201420142014201420142014That’s how we spent a good part of the first 4 months of the year, culminating with our spokesmodel party with our usual dinner (catered by Pine Lake Market) and Just Baked cupcakes and that’s where we create our composite which stays in the window of our studio until the next class!


Summer – Relay For Life, more seniors, road trips…

Team Frameable Faces participated in the Relay For Life once again to try to help beat cancer and we had a fun and rewarding day raising a nice chunk of money this year.  We also continued photographing a whole bunch of seniors and we even took a couple of road trips including one where Ally took some breathtaking photos up at Sleeping Bear Dunes.  We worked hard this summer and at the same time had to plan and gear up for our son Tony’s Bar Mitzvah!  Our heads were spinning most of the time… but it was all good stuff.

Tony’s Bar Mitzvah!

What an awesome weekend this was!  Tony did a great job, the party was a blast, and our photographer – well she’s the best.  We hired our own event photographer Angela and it was really cool to be on the other side of the lens and in her capable and talented hands.  You can see a handful of highlights from our day here!


2014New Website, other highlights and cruising towards 2015!

Meanwhile plenty of other topics were on our minds and on our plates – the launch of our fantastic new website designed by our friends at EPK Design, continued Instagramming, Vining, Tweeting, Facebooking, YouTubing, Pinning, Google Plus-ing and blogging!  We photographed plenty of families including this recent one which we’ll give you just a peek of before their upcoming blog post…


Reflecto had a bit of a rebirth as well after recovering from an injury and continued to focus on his favorite topic……himself.

So that’s our recap – we are thankful for all of you and for a great year and we are looking forward to what will be an amazing 2015!  We wish for all of you peace, health and happiness, and we will see you all soon!

All our best,

Doug and Ally


Our Shortest Blog Post

This is our shortest blog post.  It’s only 63 words.  It might not be great for SEO, and it doesn’t show off our photos.  It may not solve the world’s problems and there isn’t a whole lot to it.  Its purpose is just to simply say hi and that life is good.  So, Hi!  Life Is Good.  That is all.


Doug and Ally

5 Reasons You Are Not Photogenic


Photogenic is defined as “suitable for being photographed: likely to photograph well”.  It seems about half of the people who come to Frameable Faces warn us that we are going to have a tough time with their session because they are NOT photogenic.  Usually we just tell them we can’t help because we just don’t want the burden of trying to make such bad looking people look good.  It’s probably hopeless right?  WRONG!!!!!!!


Ally did NOT take this photo. I repeat – Ally did NOT take this photo… haha

Some people will go on and explain to us that “No – I’m serious.  I don’t photograph well at all.  I just don’t”.  If you are one of those people then in all seriousness there are likely some legitimate reasons you feel this way.  Here are 5 reasons you are not photogenic:

5 Reasons You Are Not Photogenic

  1. You are not pleased with the way you currently look.  Maybe you aren’t in the best shape of your life, or for whatever reason you aren’t thrilled with the way you look at the moment.  Hey no one is perfect, but you are the best and most unique version of you!  I wrote about this recently here.  Embrace and love yourself!  It’s okay!  If you indeed have not been taking good care of yourself then make that change and start now!  Meanwhile this is not the only reason you are “not photogenic”.
  2. You aren’t naturally comfortable in front of the camera.  Some people on a moment’s notice can just light up when someone is going to snap a photo.  They take more pictures, they practice more, they are prepared.  You are already convinced that you are not photogenic so you aren’t confident about being in a picture and you are not comfortable.  That does not mean there cannot be an environment created with proper planning where you will be comfortable.  There absolutely can be.
  3. You are being photographed by non-photographers.  This can impact a photo in a number of ways.  The person taking the photo may not have an eye for it and/or you may not connect with them.  Those two factors are really important for making a good photo – it doesn’t matter if it’s a ten thousand dollar camera without those two things.
  4. You typically are not lit (or posed) properly.  This is a continuation of the last point.  There is so much more than just knowing how to work a camera to produce a good photo.  Lighting (and posing for that matter) is a huge factor.  For example when we first opened the studio a photographer friend asked us why we had our main soft box set up on the side of our studio opposite our window.  He said that our main box was competing with the light coming in from the center court of the mall and impacting our lighting set up negatively.  He was right.  It wasn’t a difference I would have noticed but Ally sure noticed it after we made the change.  This is just one example of many factors that contribute to the composition of a photo that all combine to make you look better.  Real pros go to seminars and work with their peers – constantly honing their craft to improve all of their skills all the time.
  5. You typically are not prepared to look your absolute best when a random photo is snapped.  Maybe because of your line of work, your daily schedule or your hectic life in general you don’t have your best clothes on and your hair looking its best at all times.  If you are female your makeup also might not be done when someone says “C’mon!  Let me just get a quick picture!”

In short, not everyone is always at their perfect weight walking around 100% totally ready for their close up at a moment’s notice in perfect lighting with their favorite outfit on and hair perfectly styled to be taken by a random family member or friend with an iPhone who doesn’t know how to use the camera on it.

Here is the shamelessly self-serving part of this article – as you have probably figured out, these 5 reasons you are “not photogenic” can largely be addressed by going to a real professional whom you connect with.  I don’t just say this as an ad for Frameable Faces.  I mean it in general.  It applies to any professional who knows what they are doing.  Just don’t be hard on yourself if you haven’t always been pleased with how you look in photos.  It is not necessarily your fault!

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Frameable Faces Photography
Frameable Faces Photography is a small biz retail mom & pop shop of Doug&Ally Cohen located in the Orchard Mall in West Bloomfield, Michigan, United States Of America!
Ally & Doug can be reached at the studio at tel:248-790-7317 or emailed at
Tune in to the Doug&Ally Morning Show T-F between 8:30 – 11 EST UTC-4 on Periscope or Twitter along with many other live broadcasts on their channel, and find them at the following:
Being “Frameable” is an attitude, a community, a way of life – a life you would want to celebrate and display on your walls for all to see!  Tell us… ARE YOU FRAMEABLE?
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A Dream 5 Years and Counting!

5 year business anniversary

Yes that status was 5 years ago!  It’s hard to believe…  Ally’s dream of having a real studio of her own has become a reality and we love doing this together.

Humble Beginnings

Those who were around us and the mall back then might remember that this really started off as an experiment of sorts.  The mall had several vacancies but tenants were starting to move in which at the time was really bucking the trend – this was right in the middle of the Great Recession and Detroit was the epicenter of the whole thing.  Things were quite bleak around here but there were exciting things on the horizon at the Orchard Mall.  As for Ally, the first few months were basically spent just her by herself in this space with a desk, a temporary backdrop, her camera and a banner in the window to see if this could be a viable business…  She had been building Frameable Faces out of the house before this, photographing on location and this was a big next step.

5 year business anniversary

Starting to take shape – Frameable Faces in early 2009 – we had our new sign but no paint, furniture or much else!

The “Rescue”

I was working a dead end job at T-Mobile as a National Account Manager selling BlackBerrys to auto companies who were mostly in bankruptcy at the time.  I knew my days were numbered and Ally convinced me that when the time came that they showed me the door that instead of looking for another job we should pour all our energy into Frameable Faces Photography together.  It was a struggle to be sure growing a new business in a really rough economy, but we had never been happier.  I like to say that Ally “rescued” me from corporate America and I used to use the line that I was “way happier struggling than when I was miserable making money” and it was true!

5 Years Later

So here we are 5 years from that first status update about getting the keys to the empty space in our beloved mall and opening up the studio, and in some ways we feel like we’re just getting started!  We’ve come a long way – we’ve made so many friends and met so many incredible “Frameables” along the way.  We are forever grateful for all of you and we look forward to what’s next!!!  Cheers to 5 years!!!

What Would You Do With More Free Time?

This is a post about life, work, kids, balance…

What Would You Do With More Free Time?

Our kids are at camp for a total of 3 1/2 weeks and they have two more weeks there before they come home.  When we tell people this they say “Wow!”, “Party Time for you two!”, “It’s like a vacation!”, “Are you going anywhere?”, and “What are you going to do?”

Yes it’s like a vacation in a sense even though we are not taking any trips.  When the kids are at camp it means more free time – you don’t have to drive them anywhere or pick them up.  You can’t spend time with them because they’re away.  We don’t have to worry about planning or making meals for them.  So yes we have free time but that hardly means we are kicking back and laying by the pool for a month…  Here are some of the things we are doing while our children are away:

  • We are missing them
  • We are enjoying the time alone
  • We are launching a canvas business for other studios with the local folks who have printed our canvas for our clients for the past 4 years and we’ve used some of the time by working hard on this.  We are excited about it and there will be more to come on this topic!  If you are a professional photographer please give us a try.  The quality is top notch as our clients know.
  • We are meandering and browsing at the library and the bookstore – and we are taking our time when we do
  • We are going out with friends
  • We are staying in and reading books, watching movies, sleeping in occasionally
  • We are meeting with a bunch of seniors and scheduling senior sessions – can’t wait for the class of 2014 – new senior frameables will be gracing this blog soon!
  • We are strolling around Royal Oak and Birmingham
  • We are spreading the word about our leap into events with our second photographer Angela Bell
  • We are working hard
  • We are loving work
  • Ally is working on the photography lessons she is offering
  • We planned a little impromptu 25th high school reunion for Doug’s graduating class
  • We are taking stock – of lots of things
  • We are going to Eastern Market and Ann Arbor
  • We’ve had a drink or two
  • We are exercising
  • ….and we are missing our kids.

What would you do with some extra free time?

Should You Take Photos In The Snow…..?

Going outside during the winter in the cold and snow to take photos isn’t always on everyone’s priority list, but think about it – a snowy backdrop can be beautiful!  Sure you may have to be cold for a little bit but the results are often worth it.

Well “thankfully” as of this writing it is December 21, 2012, the world is still here, and along with the continued existence of the world we have the existence of (a little) snow here in Michigan for the first time this winter!  This is what got us thinking about the snow and we have indeed had some fun photo sessions in the snow over the years so we thought in honor of old man winter we would post a few together!

So, should you take photos in the snow?  YES!!!

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow……

West Bloomfield Photographer, Frameable Faces PhotographyWest Bloomfield Photographer, Frameable Faces PhotographyWest Bloomfield Photographer, Frameable Faces PhotographyWest Bloomfield Photographer, Frameable Faces PhotographyWest Bloomfield Photographer, Frameable Faces Photography




We have been in our studio space here in the Orchard Mall for about three years now and we really are living our dream. It hasn’t always been easy building a young business but it’s been a labor of love for sure, and today on the day after Thanksgiving was one of those days when you just realize how thankful you are.

We are humbled by the opportunity to be a part of the lives of our people who we lovingly refer to as the “frameables”. We had so many people come by the studio to visit us over the last couple days – especially our high school seniors – some who are still in high school and just had a couple days off and some who are home visiting from college. They all make us smile!

When new parents bring babies to the studio to photograph and back to visit and photograph as they grow up, when a wonderful 90 year old lady brings a 90 year old photo in to restore and tells us stories, when families come together from out of town and gather in our studio to allow us to be a part of that reunion and document it for posterity, when a dog owner brings in their best friend for a session, these are the moments that have given us so much.

We are thankful for you. All of you. Thank you so much.

Ally and Doug

Blogging Revisited

So….. we had a meeting with my friend and new guru Melissa Brodsky this morning and I am very excited! You see, Missy is an incredible and very accomplished writer and blogger and she knows her way around social media. I’ve mentioned her blog before and if you don’t follow it then you can’t be my friend anymore. Okay maybe that was a little strong. But you really should check it out – it’s fantabulous.

As most of you know I spend a lot of time updating our facebook pages and scouring the web for cool content that I think y’all will enjoy and get some use from. I tweet, I set us up with a page on LinkedIn and connect with people there, I’ve got Frameable Faces going on Foursquare, Yelp, YouTube……

It’s now time to revisit and take our blog seriously.

Little by little our online presence has morphed and grown quite a bit and this blog will once again become an important piece to the puzzle that should allow us a more robust platform and outlet for our creative energies (read – Doug can write and post more stuff), help us expand our reach, and help tie the strategy together.

All of those details might not mean a ton to all of you, but I know there are a decent number of frameables who are into this subject and regardless we just like to let you know what we’re doing and why. The blog gives us some additional flexibility and another way to build relationships online. We will continue to post on facebook and we will let you know when there is something to see here (which will be often) and we will ask you to continue to leave your comments, feedback, questions and come along for the ride! Feel free to leave a comment below and let us know what you think! The frameables are the reason we are here and we look forward to giving back to you!

Frameable Faces – What’s In A Name?

For some time Ally went by “Allyson Cohen Photography” before changing the name to Frameable Faces Photography. At the risk of sounding a little corny, Frameable Faces for us genuinely means many things and we thought we would share…

It’s not just about Ally which is one of the reasons the change was made in the first place. Frameable Faces is a place – it’s a physical studio and a business true, but it only works business namebecause it’s more than that. It is really a community – all of you! The smiling and frameable faces of the people who pass in front of Ally’s lens make up Frameable Faces Photography. You are all a part of it and it wouldn’t exist without you. You ARE the frameable faces.
Sure we take pictures and capture memories here, but we try to promote the idea that being “frameable” is an attitude and even a lifestyle. People are here because they live life to the fullest – otherwise they wouldn’t be looking to have it photographed. Sometimes people walk through our doors hesitantly – they don’t think they are photogenic. Those people deserve a lot of credit for overcoming their doubts and getting in front of the camera, and they end up discovering how frameable they really are. Is your attitude, your family, your life, your smile, your face worth displaying on a wall (or on a purse or in an album)?
We think the name is fun. It makes us smile, and taking pictures should be fun. We even think our little flower in the logo is fun (don’t ask us how it evolved into our little trademark symbol because we’re not really sure – but it seems to fit). We enjoy meeting so many wonderful people and getting to know our peeps, staying in touch, watching their children grow and celebrating life’s milestones. Sometimes it’s downright hilarious (like when a newborn baby poops on Ally).
So there you have it. Yep – it’s sugary sweet but it is what it is!