I dare you to look at these senior pictures without smiling.
I had the best time photographing these senior pictures in Spring Hill. We had so much fun laughing and dancing and playing with the puppy. Sweet Halo was so chill for our session. I joked that I needed to be able to rent her to use for other photo sessions. I always welcome dogs to my sessions (just make sure I know ahead of time so our location is dog friendly), but Halo was probably the easiest dog I’ve photographed.
Spending time with Samuel and his mom was just an absolute joy. His smile is contagious. It was a blessing to be around him, and then I found myself smiling again when I was editing the pictures.
I would love it if you could follow me on Instagram. That’s a great place to keep up to date on future openings. Also, you can book a session directly from my online booking calendar, or contact me if you have questions. In addition to Senior photos, I love photographing families.
I can’t even imagine what it might be like to lose a child myself, but I can guess that every first without your little one is incredibly difficult, including the first family photos after loss. I am thankful to have been trusted with this task, and hope that I was able to honor Finn’s memory while capturing the beautiful lives of his loving brothers and parents.
There really wasn’t much on the internet that I could find on honoring the loss of a loved one but Brandilee had made two requests so that was where I started.
The first thing she wanted was to photoshop Finn into some of the photos in a transparent way, symbolizing that his spirit was still there with them. I used photos from my family session with them from two years ago, and tried to blend it into a photo from this session.
The second thing she had requested was to include a framed photo of Finn with this family portrait session. So we printed her favorite image from that session two years ago, and she found a frame she like to put it in. The print was an 11×14 and I believe the frame was 16×20 inches.
One issue we ran into with the framed portrait was glare on the glass of the frame. Looking back, I wish I had asked them to remove the glass for the photo session. However, since I had the original image that the print was made from, it was pretty easy for me to photoshop the glare issue by covering up the reflection with the actual original image.
The last thing we did to include Finn in the photos was suggested to me in a forum of photographers who volunteer with The Gold Hope Project, and it’s actually my favorite. They suggested that we include a “stuffed animal or other object” that was important to the child whose memory we are honoring. What better way to remember Finn than to include his stuffed Avocado in the pictures?
One very important way that Finn’s family is honoring his memory is to be intimately involved in the continued fight against Rhabdo, the rare cancer that took Finn (and Sophie). If you want to learn more about their fight and the very important research going on at the Mayo Clinic, read this link on their blog.
Every client is unique, and it’s important to me to capture that uniqueness in my portrait sessions.
If you’ve ever booked a session with me, and you’re the type of person who actually does read a contract before you signed it, you may have noticed this paragraph in my client agreement:
Each session is as different and unique as the beautiful families being photographed and I do not aim to copy or recreate Pinterest images. Before booking a session with me, I want to make sure that you are familiar with my style, and that my style is what you are wanting for your images.
This statement isn’t just arbitrarily in my contract. It’s there because I want you to understand that our goal with a session is not to recreate some scene that you saw on Pinterest, or even to copy a photo you saw on my website that I took. Our goal is to create images that are as unique and beautiful as your family.
Finding what makes families special and unique is especially fun when I get to photograph clients in their home. Details like a baby’s nursery, knick-knacks or books displayed throughout the house, cherished toys, and a family’s pets are all items that can be photographed that tell part of a family’s story. I look for those types of things as I am photographing. For example, both of Evie’s parents are Chemistry professors at Vanderbilt. So when I saw a set of Science Board Books sitting on the nursery table, I knew I wanted to include one in the photos. Mom and Dad said “Quantum Physics for Babies” was their family favorite, so I asked them to read to baby Evie for a few shots.
Other things I made sure to include in photos were the cat and dog (who Lauren had said were a huge part of the family), a blanket made by Grandma, & the stuffed Bunny Evie got for her first Easter.
And I’m convinced that in 20 years when families look back on these photos, they will be glad to have those details captured instead of someone else’s idea of a pretty Pinterest scene. 😍
I welcome clients including their pets in family portrait sessions. After all, they are a part of the family too.
Robin & Miles wanted to include their dogs Harley & Cassie in their portrait session, and the Park at Harlinsdale Farms was the perfect spot for including pets. Robin is originally from Kentucky and wanted a location with a rustic feel, so Harlinsdale was perfect and a welcome spot to bring dogs.
One reason I love to include dogs in a session, is I think it helps the clients to feel more relaxed. It’s easier to capture candid moments when there are sweet doggies to play with during the session. Some clients worry that the dogs will be a distraction. I haven’t really found this to be an issue. Assuming the dogs are friendly, I am generally able to include photos both with and without the dogs. For this session, my 10-year-old “assistant” actually joined me at the shoot was able to help with the dogs when they were not being included in photos. If you would like to include your family dogs in a session, just let me know ahead of time and we can choose an appropriate place, and I can even bring my young assistant if you think that will be helpful.
Harley and Cassie were the sweetest dogs and I really enjoyed getting to know them and their lovely owners on this gorgeous day.
I first met this lovely Spring Hill family a little over two years ago at big sister Scarlett’s newborn session. I was excited when Mikaela contacted me to tell me that she was pregnant again and wanted to schedule a second newborn portrait session.
It is so much fun to get to come back to a family and again witness such a beautiful time in their lives. I loved seeing baby Scarlett, now 2 1/ 2, doting over her new baby brother. I was able to see what used to be her nursery, recently turned over to baby brother. And she showed me her new big girl room and all her toys.
It’s a different vibe to the house the second time around when I get to photograph repeat newborn sessions. Mom and dad are no longer newbies, but seasoned parents who know better what to expect from both parenthood, and the photo session. And then there is an energetic giggling big sibling there to liven things up…one of my favorite parts.
I feel fortunate to have a job that lets me be a small part of such special memories for a family. I know every time I leave a newborn session, I end up reminiscing about when my girls were that age, and what a magical time it was. I know it was tough too. I haven’t forgotten that completely, but it was also so special. I’m glad that I can create a little something to help them remember that time, which is so fleeting.
And as a bonus, I got to spend a morning hanging out with two pretty awesome little humans. ❤️