This year I have intentionally been turning my family sessions a new direction and focusing more on “day in the life” photo sessions. I believe patiently that capturing your everyday life is beautiful, and I particularly think with toddlers, it is wonderful to capture them in their home environment, where they are more apt to feel at home and settle in.
For this session, I focused on photographing my nephews at their home. Big brother B just moved into his own “big boy room” right before turning 2, while baby brother J just turned four months. I sought to capture B in his new domain, including the loving details of his room that mama designed. The small details were important, too. B adores his puppy; it’s his security. Meanwhile, baby J is drooling up a storm and sharing his wide smile with strangers now, no longer a sleepy newborn.
Here are some favorite images of the boys at their home!
What about you? Do you have images of your childhood bedroom? What details of your family would you like to have captured? Let’s chat in the comments!
I’ve waited a long time to share today’s birth story, a first-time mom’s birth center water birth!
I always respect my client’s wishes regarding whether or not images are shared, and prior to delivery, this mom wasn’t sure she wanted the birth photos made public. I am totally okay with whatever you choose from your session, but I am excited that she has changed her mind and wants to share images from her birth center water birth!
We had been waiting for quite some time for “Nugget” to join the world. We weren’t sure whether or not a boy or girl would be welcome us, but we did know it felt like baby was taking a long time to decide to make its entrance!
Finally, I received word that it was “time.” Yay! I packed my camera bag and headed out after the expectant father said that things seemed to be getting serious.
Mom and Dad had already decided they hoped for a water birth at Eastside Birth Center in Bellevue, but we hung out at home until things seemed to be moving along. We headed in, but after things seem to stall out a bit after being in the tub, mama was sent back home–a bit disheartened and now tired too. (Personally, I think Baby B just knew I would have far better lighting for an early afternoon birth instead of a pre-dawn birth 😉 )
During birth, I try to give the parents space and not be a distraction. With labor now slowed, I decided to leave mama alone, but I hung close since I suspected things would heat back up again shortly. Sure enough, two hours later I got the call to report back. We took our second journey of the day to the birth center, but there was no stopping things this time! Mama was a trouper, while Dad was a tremendous support.
Baby B emerged, and it was amazing. It was almost as if he swam up to the surface of the water to his mama. Tears of joy were shed all around, mama realized she had a brand new baby BOY, and dad cut the cord. At Eastside Birth Center, rooms are set up much like a beautiful hotel room, so mom and dad were able to cuddle the baby right in a big king-sized bed. Grandparents and auntie arrived, and baby B was blessed to be welcomed with so much love!
Dad waited to welcome his new little one.
Mama enjoys a very brief respite between pushes.
Baby B was delivered in the water, and after two pushes emerged completely and was lifted up to mama.
Parents, as well as first-time grandparents and new aunt, welcome the family’s new addition. Eastside Birth Center in Bellevue, WA, features hotel-like rooms to make families more comfortable.
Baby B, still adjusting to the new sights and sounds.
I love capturing the tiny details of newborns… here the sweet little hands and his handmade hat.
I absolutely love photographing birth stories, and am currently booking through the end of the year. I reserve only two spots per month for births, so contact me now if you are interested in reserving your due date!
Let’s plan for your birth story!
Today I’m sharing a special family session from last fall to give you a behind-the-scenes look at a Beloved family session, which I call my “Bountiful” family sessions.
Often I find that people schedule family photo sessions because it has been a long time since they’ve had updated photos, or maybe a specific event like the birth of another child or a particular milestone is triggering them to feel like they “should” get pictures done–or maybe it’s just that they want to be sure they have an updated Christmas card photo. 🙂
But really, a family photo session you are investing in should be so much more than just a snapshot of your kids’ gap-toothed grins or your latest haircut. Your family photos should tell the story of who you are as a family.
It is always my goal to get photos that reveal the personality and character of the individuals and of the family as a whole. This particular family loves the outdoors and being active, and the young siblings have the sweetest relationship, all of which was important to capture during their session.
In my sessions, I do have some posed photos, but I also seek to engage everyone to get more authentic expression, and we also have some playtime and relaxed moments, too!
I love these images, particularly of brother and sister, and that mom and dad were able to have a few moments together as well. Often parents of young kids haven’t had any photos together since their wedding! In these photos, the love between all members of the family is so evident. Their postures are relaxed and open. And the photos in the sand capture the carefree playfulness of toddlerhood.
Tell me, what are your favorite images from this session? I’d love to hear what resonates with you! And what are the special “quirks” you’d want captured in your family session?
I am so honored to have one of my recent family sessions featured on the Beloved Collective blog. What is the Beloved Collective? Simply put, the Beloved Collective is a group of artists passionate about celebrating photography that captures the heart and soul of people. The Beloved genre and accompanying techniques launched a few years ago, and I was one of the “early adopters” and remain one of only a handful of certified Beloved photographers in the world.
With the Beloved techniques, we seek to go beyond the standard posed photo session into something more revealing and more authentic to our subjects. I am always hoping to reveal a glimpse of the people inside, to go beyond the “camera smile” to see into people’s hearts. I want you to look at the pictures of your family and say, “That’s so ‘him.’ You really captured his essence.”
I have the most freedom with my techniques when interacting with longtime couples, but in the sneak peek over on the Beloved blog, you’ll see a bit of what happens when I get out with families, too! I dub my Beloved family sessions “Bountiful” sessions, and I truly hope they are overflowing with love and authenticity.
I would love it if you would head over and tell me what you think!
And tomorrow, I’ll show more from this fun family session…
I am always thrilled to be invited to photograph a birth and to take part in such a momentous part in a family’s life. Our Blessed Strength Mama has delivered her new baby boy, and I got to capture every moment!
When I got the text that Kristy’s water had broken in the middle of her 39-week appointment while at the midwives’ office (such timing!), we knew we wouldn’t have too long before baby arrived. Kristy headed home to labor for a few hours, but was promptly headed back to the hospital before too long. Sometimes these third babies don’t waste their time!
With a great support team of best friend, mother-in-law, and attentive husband, Kristy labored with quiet, focused intensity without any drugs. Kristy’s hope prior to labor was to have a more peaceful, unmedicated birth this time around, and she got exactly what she worked so hard for.
The room had an expectant but quiet serenity as Kristy prepared to welcome her new baby boy, and at 7:52 p.m., he arrived with barely a cry, all 8 lbs., 2 oz. of him! It was truly a beautiful, peaceful birth. Baby and mama were surrounded by love and care through the entire process, and it was a joy to be a part of.
I am so thrilled for this family as they complete their family of five with little Tommy. It was truly an honor! Congratulations!
Here are just a few of the images from Tommy’s birth, and I am so thankful that Kristy allowed me to share them with you!
I was thrilled to see the response to the first post of my Blessed Strength project, and today I want to showcase some of the “behind the scenes” of Kristy’s life as a Stroller Strides owner!
Before photographing Kristy, I had heard of Stroller Strides but never seen any of the classes in action. What is Stroller Strides? Basically it’s an awesome set-up wherein moms of young kids get to bring their children with them to workout classes. The kids get to hang out (and in nice weather enjoy the fresh air), the moms get to share in the accountability and camaraderie of working out with other moms, and everyone gets healthier! What’s not to like about that?
What was most impressive to me was that the sense of community and support among these women was almost palpable. There was no “shame-based” weight or diet talk that I’ve seen at other fitness classes (No “I can’t believe I ate an ice cream cone yesterday” type of thing), women of all shapes and sizes were participating, and the focus stayed on staying active and positive. And the friendship goes even beyond that. At the class I attended, there was even a surprise baby shower for Kristy (and no, they didn’t know I was coming so it wasn’t staged). Stroller Strides is about moms getting healthy, doing something positive for themselves, and being great examples for their kids.
In the classes, the women challenge themselves with a variety of fitness activities: relays, contests, races, and more. These women may have little ones, but even the expectant ones are rocking planks and jogging around the park. Just look at them go!
Interested in checking out a class? Kristy owns several local franchises. Find out more about their options here.*
* All comments are based solely on my own opinions and observations. I am not being compensated in any way for this post!
And … psst, Kristy has since given birth, and I’ll be sharing her birth story later this week so stay tuned! You don’t want to miss this special post!