Author Archives: Tara Showen

Hi Ya'll!

New year, new exciting things happening at Tiptoe Studios! Let me just start by saying that we love, love, LOVE a newborn session! For us ladies, there is nothing better than cuddling with a brand new little girl or boy; that new baby smell, the adorable little sounds and perfect little baby face make us fall in love with each and every Tiptoe baby we meet!

We are super excited to introduce our new promotion for maternity, birthDAY and newborn sessions! Because these sessions absolutely go hand in hand, why not save a little money? Now, whenever you book two or more of these 3 sessions, you have the opportunity to save BIG! Mix and match maternity and newborn, maternity and birthDAY, birthDAY and newborn...the combo is completely up to you! Or book all 3 for even bigger savings!

So, if you are expecting, give us a ring or shoot us an email to book! Let us love on your little munchkin for a bit...we promise to give them back! 😉

Tis the season at Tiptoe Studios and we are ready for the holidays! we have a couple of pretty fantastic deals coming up and we do NOT want you to miss out!

First up- we are starting a new tradition this year and thanks to YOU, we are offering Pictures With Santa this Saturday, December 3rd before the Charles Town/Ranson parade! We had an overwhelming request for these sessions so we decided to try it out! You will already be in town for the parade; why not stop by and your little one(s) picture taken with Santa?


Next up- Tiptoe's Last Call for holiday sessions! No worries ya'll, we are still booking regular holiday sessions but these are designed for those of you who love to wait last minute (and I am in the same boat, believe me!) and need digital files for Christmas cards, photo prints, photo gifts, etc. These are 10 minute sessions held on Sunday, December 4th and you will have your digital files edited and delivered in plenty of time for gift giving! Be sure to call and reserve your time slot!

Just a sidenote- our deadline for ordering prints with a guaranteed delivery before Christmas is Monday, December 12th. Anything ordered after that will not be guaranteed for Christmas delivery without extra shipping charges.


Next up is a yearly Tiptoe favorite- our Black Friday/ Small Business Saturday Sale! It's back and it is as fabulous as ever; for every $50 in gift cards purchased, get $25 FREE! The perfect holiday gift for your loved ones or for yourself! This deal is only available on November 25th and 26th so be sure to give us a ring on those days if you want to take advantage of this awesome sale!


We look forward to seeing you walk through our door on one of these days! Happy holidays from the entire Tiptoe crew!



If I was the crying type, I would definitely be shedding tears over the loss of one of Tiptoe's finest... Last week, we had to say good bye to our Ande who has been with us for the last 4  years. She came to us fresh out of high school and we knew from the moment we met her that she was a Tiptoe girl! She first joined the team as an office employee, responsible for emailing clients, packaging orders, etc. As Tiptoe grew, Ande took on a bigger role. She has painted faces at Third Thursday events, dressed up and passed out candy for Halloween and sat through numerous vendors fairs with us. A few years ago, Ande took up the camera and became our part time photographer, shooting weddings, seniors and couples with a modern and edgy feel which was all her own. Ande has been a huge part of this business and without her contributions, we would not be the success we are today!

We wish her the best of luck as she rides off into the sunset (to Morgantown, lol) to study veterinary medicine.  She will always have a special place in all of our hearts and we will never forget the awesome memories of her time with us. And as we always say, "once a Tiptoe lady, always a Tiptoe lady!"

As she embarks on this new path in life, we wish her nothing but the best!  Ok, maybe I shed a single man tear there...but you'll never really know 😉

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Just a few cell phone pics from our last night together!!


Tara here and I have some really great news! It's fundraiser time and this go round we are supporting an awesome local baseball team, the 8U Summit Point Pride! These boys have worked super hard and just won the Virginia District 9 Babe Ruth Rookie Championship! This means they are moving on to the state tournament in New Kent Virginia starting on June 30th. Tiptoe is hosting a fundraiser to help them cover some of the costs associated with the trip and that means you have the opportunity to get a great discounted price on our copyrights and help out the boys at the same time! It's totally a win/win situation if I do say so, myself! You are able to use this deal for almost any type of shoot- family, kids, engagement, head shot, etc.

We will be booking these sessions in 10 minute time slots at $30 per image instead of our regular $100. That's right, folks, it is a savings of $70!! You can book up to 2 slots per family at the same $30 per image. (So 2 slots= $60 and 2 copyright images.) 50% of the proceeds go right back to the Pride, so please help us help them make this happen!

To book your slot, give me a ring at 304-995-6743 or shoot me an email at We can't wait to see you!

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headshot editHello Everyone! Tara here.  I am the lucky first Tiptoe lady in line to bring you my All About Me post so let's get this contest going, shall we?

I am the oldest Tiptoe lady at 36 (gasp!) years of age. I totally feel like I am somewhere around 28 though, on a good day! I was actually born in McKeesport, Pennsylvania but moved to Charles Town when I was 5 years old. Because it is such a small town, I do still tend to feel like a transplant, even 31 years later. I live in Kearneysville with my husband, Donnie and 2 kids, Maddox and Gabriel whom I love and a dog, Milly and cockatiel, Bubbles whom I do not love. As you might can guess, I am not an animal lover!

I, along with my two partners, Lisa and Jennifer own Tiptoe Studios. I actually retired from shooting about a year and a half ago. My current role is scheduling sessions, handling emails and phone calls, assigning shoots, handling the financial aspects of the business and conducting mostly all of the ordering sessions. You know, all the fun stuff, lol! I do thoroughly enjoy what I do and appreciate every day that I have the opportunity to be my own boss and set my own schedule. It gives me the flexibility to be more involved with my kids' school and leaves plenty of Me-Time which I absolutely require in order to stay sane!

A few things that make me, me...

I am a closet introvert! It is through a lot of practice and effort that I can definitely handle myself in a crowd, but what you don't see is the part when I go home and isolate myself in a quiet room by myself to "re-charge my batteries"...for a few hours...and normally with a glass of wine!

I am not a fan of big emotional displays. Or small emotional displays. Or of emotions in general. Please do not cry in front of me unless you are watching a Tiptoe slideshow or you are a small, hurt child.

My nails are painted 99.99% of the time. Plain nails make me sad. (But I don't cry about it, lol!)

My sister is a nurse who happened to also be a hairdresser once upon a time, so she still cuts and colors my hair. My biggest repeat request when I have her do my hair is to not make it look like "PTO mom hair". On that note, I am currently the PTO president of my kids school and have been for the last 5 years!

I love TV, like, ALOT. I frequently put every TV in my house on the same channel when I am watching a show so that I can wander from room to room, cleaning or whatever and still be able to keep a continuous eye on said show!

I do not like blueberries, raw onions or wasabi. A few other dislikes are capri pants, Subarus and Kanye West.

As soon as I drop the kids off at school, I crank the radio up and sing (loudly) along to 80's rock, 90's alternative music or gangster rap, just depending on what mood I am in. AND I think I sound great AND I don't care who sees me rockin' out!

I love TV shows, movies and books about an apocalypse! It can be any apocalypse, zombie, power, natural disaster, whatever.  If it's about the end of the world, I am fascinated!

I retain a lot of useless information about a wide range of topics. But, hey, when I am ready to go on Jeopardy, I am going to kick ass!

Us girls...


The boys...


In parting, I will leave you with what I think is some pretty damn good advice...

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Hi Ya'll, aren't you glad the sun is shining today??!!  We certainly are! Despite the dreary weather this month, we haven't let it put a "damper" (see what I did there 😉 ) on our productivity! We have been super busy not only shooting several sports teams, preschools and weddings but also designing and preparing for the launch of our brand new website! On June 1st, we will be making the big change but in the meantime, we have a little contest to get under way...!

Every day this week, there will be an "About Me" post from 1 Tiptoe lady, giving you the lowdown on her life. You know, personality quirks, likes and dislikes, funny stories; pretty much anything we want to throw out there to our captive audience, lol! Read these carefully and thoroughly because on Tuesday, May 31st we will release our 1st Ever Tiptoe Studios Scavenger Hunt! There will be questions plucked from each blog post for you to answer and maybe a "find the object" portion thrown in for good measure. All answers must be submitted to our email,, June 1st by midnight to be entered to win! The prize? One lucky winner will receive a 15 minute Tiny Session with 10 print released images, a $500 value! Want to increase your chance to win? You can receive one additional entry each for liking our Facebook page, following us on Twitter, following us on Instagram and subscribing to the Tiptoe Studios blog. So, shall we get this thing going? Here is the first portion of our All About Me Series:

Tiptoe Beginnings...

 Sometime in 2004 in what feels like a galaxy far, far away, Tara Showen, Lisa Mercer and Jennifer Gustines met while working at Jefferson Security Bank in Charles Town, WV. After a few more years of "working for the man" we decided to strike out on our own and Tiptoe Studios was formally created in July of 2008. In the beginning we had no studio and shot on location in Charles Town, Shepherdstown and Harpers Ferry.

Sorry about the picture of a picture but we were disposable camera type of girls back then so enjoy this little gem!throwback

With the addition of a studio around 2010, we also added Ande Compton who we never imagined would stick with us through thick and thin for the next 6 years! Ande started out as our office girl but quickly impressed us with her edgy and modern style of photography and has since escalated to part-time photographer while attending Shepherd University.

In January of 2014, Beth Williams, a longtime client (and Jennifer's cousin!) joined us as our Winchester area photographer. Her eagerness and persistence has helped us spread the Tiptoe word and we consider ourselves lucky to have her!

We moved into our current studio space 4 years ago this September and we have enjoyed being in the center of downtown Charles Town. For those of you who have never visited, stop on by sometime for a visit! We love to show our studio off!

We believe Tiptoe is so successful because of our shared customer service related backgrounds and also because we genuinely love each other and get along so well! We often get inquiries from people who are eager to join our team and the underlying comment is always, "you guys just look like you have so much fun!" Well, we honestly do! It helps that we were friends before business partners and it is something that we try to never to lose sight of, even when we are elbows deep in editing and spending hours upon hours in meetings in the studio. If you follow our Facebook and Instagram pages, you can see that we spend lots of non-Tiptoe time together as well!

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There are a few people who deserve some pretty big thank yous for helping Tiptoe truly flourish along the way:

Art Henderson- Art taught us so much when we first began Tiptoe Studios, including the very basics and, more recently, he taught us natural light girls a little bit more about studio lighting as well! Thank you Art!

Lindsay Hall and Chasity Eggleton- These girls were our Missouri and local photographers and we truly believe they were instrumental to making Tiptoe Studios the success it is today. Even though major life changes have taken us on different paths, we still believe that "once a Tiptoe lady, always a Tiptoe Lady" and consider them our Tiptoe Family even now! Love you, ladies and thank you so much for everything!


So that ends the "Tiptoe beginnings" portion! I hope you read it carefully... Tara is up next and will be posting later on today!


Since we are right in the midst of wedding booking season, we thought it would be fun to have a special wedding-booking-promotion! So, here it is!

Wedding drawing 2016

It is super easy to be eligible for this drawing! Our requirements:

  1. You are getting married
  2. You are getting married anytime in the year 2016
  3. You realize that no wedding compares to a Tiptoe Wedding and you immediately book us for your big day 😉
  4. You pay your deposit, amount determined by the wedding collection you choose
  5. Your deposit is paid to us within the months of January or February
  6. That is all...

See how easy and painless it is? Everyone who books their Tiptoe Wedding in the months of January and February will be entered to win 1 Grand Prize of 20% off of your chosen wedding collection (Elopement, Brilliance, Opulence Collections). Our winner will be randomly selected on March 1st, 2016.

What are you waiting for? Book your wedding consultation now!


For those of you who made a New Year's resolution to learn how to use your fancy camera... We are excited to announce that we will be hosting the first workshop in our Tiptoe Teaches series, this January 24th at 9am! This "Know Thy Camera" class teaches the very basics of photography and explains how to shoot in the Tiptoe style. Book before January 15th and receive 10% off the price of the class!

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Helllllllooooo everyone! We at Tiptoe Studios hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas and New Year! We took a nice long break but we are back and ready to jump right into 2016!

I don't know about you, but right after the Christmas and New Year holidays, I fall into a funk! The Christmas lights are gone along with that awesome feeling of anticipation for the holiday parties, family time and celebration and we are left with bleak January and February. And to me, January + February = super cold weather and static-y hair. Neither of which I am a fan!

Soooo, we turn our thoughts to the next big holiday to brighten our spirits and it happens to be one of my favorite days of the year... Valentine's Day! I know that a lot of people see it as a fake or "Hallmark" holiday but pictures for V-Day are some of my favorites because they are so darn cute! (or super sexy if you plan to go that route, this year!) 😉 I mean take a look at these pics of Olivia and Gabe from last year:

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I mean, seriously!? How freakin' cute is that? And yes, we shamelessly dress our kids up and use them for advertising! We have plans to do it again this year, so stay tuned!

Anywho...let's get on to the part where I tell you about this year's upcoming Valentine's Day specials! We have a few to satisfy every Valentine's Day need! The first up is our annual boudoir special...


We are booking these right now and will continue to do so up until February 1st...plenty of time to get that session album on time for the big day! Ladies, give him what her really wants this year!

For our families and couples, we have a promotion for you as well! Check it out below:

V-Day Couples 2016 V-Day Families 2016

So, break out your best pink, red and white outfits and give us a call or shoot us an email to book one of these awesome sessions!  We can't wait to see you!


On the 5th day of our Christmas Super Sale, we bring you the opportunity for the biggest savings yet! For today only, our print released session CD is on sale for only $600! Normally, $1300, (and the most expensive, most coveted item on our menu) you save more than half off the regular price! Don't miss this one, guys!