When it comes to choosing locations for family photo sessions, the most important element to me is finding beautiful light. I arrived early Sunday at Henry Horton Park to scope out the light and decide where to shoot, as I always do before a portrait session. I was so pleased to find a lovely spot with the most gorgeous lighting. There is nothing elaborate or fancy about the location…it was just a wooded area with field of tall grass. But when the sun comes through in just the right spot, the photos can be absolutely magical.
January is one of the moms who encouraged me early in my photography journey. I took photos of these girls when they were itty bitty. Photos I took during that time always make me wish I could have a do-over because I was so early in my photography journey and I made so many mistakes. But also I am grateful to have been able to preserve those memories, no matter how imperfect. I’m so glad I had the chance to photograph them again at Henry Horton, because they are just as photogenic as they were years ago, and I feel like I was able to give her better quality images.
Are you following me on Instagram? That’s a great place to keep up to date on future openings. I have a couple spots left for my Holiday Family Mini Sessions. Or are you looking for a senior photographer? Either way, you can book a session directly from my online booking calendar, or contact me if you have questions.
A few years ago, my friend Stephanie from college hired me to do a portrait session for her oldest daughter Logan as she was about to start middle school. She wanted the session to focus on Logan as she made the transition from elementary to middle school, and I thought it was a great idea. We do milestones sessions all the time for babies, and then again when kids are seniors in high school, but those middle years often get left out. We need to document the lives of our tweens and younger teens too. I’d love to see more clients interested in photographing tweens
This year, Stephanie contacted me again, and this time it was a big year for both of her daughters. Logan is about to start high school, and her little sister Molly is about to start middle school. So she wanted a session for both of them to document this transitional time period in their lives, and I was super excited to get to hang out with both of them. They are really fantastic young women and we had the best time. They are both gorgeous and were so easy to photograph.
I couldn’t get over what fantastic weather we had for this late July session. I was a bit worried it would be insanely hot, like it typically is this time of year, but we got so lucky with a beautiful mild evening. Preservation park has definitely become one of my favorite places to photograph sessions. My only complaint is that it’s quite a bit of walking (and up a giant hill) to get to the spots I really like to shoot at.
Since we do’t often think of doing a special photo session for younger teens or tweens, so I wanted to outline a couple reasons why you might want to consider one.
Reasons for photographing tweens & Teens
- They are changing so fast. We typically book lots of photo sessions for our babies and toddlers because “they are changing so fast” and we want to document all those seasons and changes. Well, that’s happening now too. It seems like you look a way for a moment, and when you look back, your baby is gone and somehow a young woman is standing in her place. #dontblink
- Even if they don’t admit it, they enjoy the extra attention. I don’t actually know this for sure and it’s probably not true for every kid, but I think most of them welcome the opportunity to be made a fuss over just a little bit. Especially when they figure out that my sessions are pretty laid back and casual and we are just gonna hang out and chat.
- They are really becoming amazing, unique human beings and a session is a chance to get to know them better. We joke a lot about how tough it is to parent teens, and believe me, it is. But also, it’s so freaking cool to be able to have these real, meaningful conversations with these amazing people that you MADE. A photo session is an opportunity to stand back, take a deep breath, and appreciate your beautiful creation.
- Maybe the photos will help them to see what amazing humans they are, if they don’t already know it. As tough as it is to parent a teen, it’s probably even tougher to be one. Maybe the photos will help them see how beautifully made they are, if they don’t know it already.
- Before you know it, it will be time for that Senior Portrait session. As my friend Michelle always says, “the days are long but the years are short.” Before you know it, this season will be over, and you’ll wish you had documented it.
So there you have it…5 reasons to either pick up the camera and get photos of your “big kids”, or hire a professional for either a family portrait session or a session of just your older kids. Did I miss any?
These two families are visiting together for the holidays…one having just recently moved to Nashville from California, and the other coming in from California to spend a week with them in their new home in Nashville. Originally, we had planned to shoot the two family portrait sessions separately, one at a time. But some time constraints prevented them from having enough time to do two full separate sessions before it got dark, so we decided to combine them into one big extended family session.
I have to say that I am really glad it worked out that way because these families needed photos together. They wanted a location that was representative of the area and that they wouldn’t be able to see in California. I’m really glad we chose the Park at Harlinsdale Farms. What better way to represent Nashville than with a beautiful old horse farm? Plus there is lots of variety there and it looks beautiful in any season.
It was the kind of session that was just so easy to shoot and everything came together perfectly. The light and the sunset was amazing, but most of all was just the connection between all of these friends. I left the session feeling really glad to have been a part of it, and hoping that they have an amazing week in Nashville making memories together.