I'm going to guess that if you have followed my work for any amount of time, that you know this family. They have helped me so much in my business and this time let me take their images while I was being recorded on video, here is a hint, don't do this to people you love. It was actually one of the hardest sessions I've done (can I admit that)? And trying to teach and take pictures of an on the go family that knows me like a second mother, was not ideal conditions. But, they are done, there is love, there is life, and I can't help but love them because they all shine. A huge thank you to my sister and her family for making life that much sweeter, and for waiting for 2 months for me to finally finish editing your images....
We found a Saturday in Fall without rain, yay! And enjoyed a laid back sessions of exploring, running away from spiders, and capturing this beautiful family just as they were.
I truthfully don't even know what this is. I know that it's rough, and I know that's it's me. And I know it's what I needed to do for an hour of today. A big gulp as I share.
My sister is a nurse and I'm pretty sure she tries to convince everyone on the ped's unit to hire me, and she's had pretty good success! (Thanks, Loni)! This is the 2nd time I've captured this family, and can I just say what an absolute treat it is to have them in front of my camera. Suman has made me feel like I am giving her the greatest gift of all time (I sure look at photography that way, but not everyone does). She gave me the go ahead to just do my thing, which makes me feel like breaking out in dance.Having a client that tells you what your images made them feel, is all I need to fall head over heels with my job. I'm figuring out that the more I expose of my heart, the more I get back in return. Feeling grateful for grateful clients. Also, I love this session.
As I said in the first image I shared from the session, I love capturing an entire family together. Years of love, and the result of time and effort are put before me, and it's the best love story to take in. I feel like extended family shoots should be a celebration of so much, and I think it truly is.
If you are a photographer reading this or local, then you have most likely heard of Devon Hall. She has captured my family a handful of times, and I have had the honor of capturing her family a few times as well.
Most people look at me with a confused look on their face when they see Devon and I supporting each other, as we could be seen as each other's competition, but I truthfully don't look at our relationship that way. I look at her as a friend, a mother, a talented business owner who is doing her own thing in a beautiful way. We both radically changed our business just over a year ago, and it has been so nice to call or text when we needed encouragement, or a kick in the butt to stay motivated to make this business work, enabling us to spend time with our own families and to give clients our best. I truthfully couldn't have made this year what it has been without her (and of course Dana Pugh's online business course...seriously, take it).
They ended off the session by remembering their sweet Libby by throwing some flowers in the River together (Devon's idea, with the same flowers they had at their wedding). An honor to be there for something so personal, and beautiful.
Love you Devon.
I first met Jenn back in 2001 (I think?) when we both were attending Capernwray in England. I clearly remember the first time I saw here there and it was if I knew we would be life long friends. Though we live a province apart, we have been fortunate enough to see each other nearly every year. She has the kind of heart that makes you think about who you are, what you give, and you are left thinking "I want to be more like Jenn," She inspires, she is real, she loves bigger and better than most would ever dream. She looks at challenges as an opportunity to show more grace, love, joy and to give hope to others. All that she is runs deep through her amazing family, and I consider myself the luckiest to have captured such love in both images and a video session for them. It is truly humbling/amazing when a friend values your work, and I can't thank you enough Jenn for making me feel like I was giving you the most treasured of gifts when you hired me. We spend the day at their favorite place to get away, and then took at few photos at their home the next morning. Enjoy!
It turns out we are just blessed to know good people. Another connection from my parents who had us all in for dinner, and made us feel so welcomed and right at home. Pepper got to play with baby Olivia, and found herself with some pink car envy!
This session happen as we watched the darkest thunderstorm clouds roll in, but that didn't stop love from being shown, and I consider myself lucky to have captured this family together, doing what they do best.
If love, laughter, humor, kittens, horses, dogs, luge helmuts,upright bass', pretty light and thunderstorm clouds aren't your thing, than you may want to avoid this lengthy blog post. This family welcomed me in (and being friends of my parents, had them and me and my kids over for dinner the next night, talk about a warm welcome!) and gave little instructions, but to capture them as they are. This session was a gift, and I'm putting up a slew of photos to prove it.
I feel so fortunate to have taken photos of this dear family. Cheryl is my cousin and they have been in Burundi serving for the past two years, and have now come home for a few months break. Their family exudes love and grace and she has taught me so much even while apart. Here are some images from our quick little session.
For the past 5 years I've told myself I'd get better at blogging sessions, so here I am trying to do just that.
I had the pleasure of Capturing Alyssa for her Grad. Her family and friends were so hilarious and kind and made me feel so welcome! The first set of images were from a record setting rainy day, but the second set that included everyone the sun shone, and we were so thankful for it!
This week has been a week filled with aches and pains, something not new to me, but I've never fully gotten used to it even 16 years later. Back in 2000 I was in a car accident that would alter my life. I've been to more doctors than I can list, tried everything, and the pain has lessened but never goes away. I know this sounds like a complaining post, but this week has been a week of reflection for me, and this time pain has brought gratitude.
15 years or so ago, I sat in a rheumatologist office in tears as he confirmed a diagnoses of fibromyalgia on top of my degenerating discs in my thoracic spine. At the age of 19 my life was flashing through my eyes as the he mumbled on about exericises to try, and stretches to do. Who would marry me? Could I ever have kids? How do I have worth if I can't work hard physically? How will I care for a home, a family? I felt like I'd lost what I thought my life would be, and well, I guess I did.
Now that I'm on the other side of so many of the questions I had that day, I can't help but be amazed. I got married, and to a compassionate man that doesn't complain about what I can or can't do, and never asks that I change. He listens to me complain that I can't exercise without hurting something, of my pain that day and reassures me of my worth.
I have children, 3 beautiful children in fact. I have been able to do more with them than I ever thought possible, and the older they get, the easier it is on my physically.
So today I choose thankfulness. I'm thankful for the things I've been blessed with, considering I never knew if I would have them. I'm thankful to be turning on page on finding beauty in who I am, rather than what shape I'm in. I'm a work in progress, but surely beauty comes when you leave bitterness behind.
I go into each session with the goal and hope to inspire my clients and tell their story. This session was different from anything I've really ever done before. I spent the drive to it in and out of prayer, praying that I would get the session right, and that my photos would encourage Mel on her journey. Mel started chemotherapy this week, which makes these images her story. I see a woman of strength, a young woman with courage, who is brave, and who is boldly stepping forward into this next chapter of her story. Mel, you inspired me even in the short time we met. I love how you embraced your purple hair and were up for anything I asked you to do. I hope these images can encourage you along the way. Much love.