I have captured this family a few times already, usually during holiday mini-sessions, but this was our first Real-Life Session & at their home. Soon to be a family of 5, they chose a documentary session t0 capture what life was like as a family of 4. I'm going to guess that a typical Sunday morning is looking a little different these days for this crew with the new addition. At least for some of them... Ryan may still be playing Fortnite. We did a lot of hanging out, playing games, etc (and omg, the pot holder loom was instant nostalgia - I definitely weaved quite a few of those growing up) & of course got their pup, Biggie, involved, as well. I loved capturing the brother-sister relationship of these two & all of the facial expressions that came with it. Knowing that their relationship will be constantly changing as they grow up (and perhaps starting with when they became big siblings to their new baby sister), its something that adds to the "now" of these photos. I can't wait to come back in a year to document how their real life has changed!
Hanging out with Kathryn on a typical Saturday morning for this mini Day in the Life at their home was seriously so much fun. Her mother's intention for this documentary family session was to capture her 2.5 year old daughter's maximum curiosity at this age... to cherish the joy in their family's every day moments... and I think we succeeded.
One minute we we're having races in the front yard, the next we we're playing hide & seek and being served fake ice cream in exchange for fake money... (specifically, $2... everything was $2). Kathryn was only a little into helping her mom make muffins, until the chocolate chips came out & her excitement increased, proudly topping off each cup. She sure stayed busy all morning with one activity after another, but she was also perfectly content cuddled up next to her dad on the couch watching some college football. We also broke some documentary-family-session rules (I've always been a rule breaker) and squeezed in just a couple of directed photos of the three of them.
When little ones are involved, you don't need to have any specific activities planned for your documentary family session. If you let everything unfold naturally, it will not only make for a no-stress experience, but also result in much more honest & natural photos. A true glimpse into your current daily life (or in this case, morning).
Visiting ME (okay, okay and my wife) is a great reason for some day in the life photos. These two ladies are great friends of ours & getting to hang with them & their 2.5 year old twin daughters for a weekend was everything. They had just come from a busy few days at Disney, so we did a lot of just hanging out... at the house, around the house... The girls' big personalities kept us entertained & laughing all weekend and it was so much fun to capture those personalities in photos!They we're on a Florida vacation, but got to take home the best souvenir they could have... their NOW captured in images they can reflect on forever.
If you asked me a couple weeks ago what a normal day at home with 3 young boys is like, I wouldn't have had any idea. But now, looking back on everything that my day with this family entailed... it all seems about right. There were legos and superheroes and slime and nerf guns and football... and even a competitive water balloon fight (shout out to my 85mm lens for allowing me to capture the action while staying dry)... But there was also calmness and bonding and giggles and collaboration and comfort. So many moments & interactions in any given day that may seem so small while they're happening, but end up being so meaningful as time flies by.
Day-in-the-life photo sessions provide a great snapshot of what your life was like at this moment... They show you how much beauty there is in your every day (even when you can't see it amongst the chaos) and captures the small but meaningful moments of your family that can easily be missed (especially if you're trying to be the one behind the camera all the time).
Combining documentary photography & newborn photography seems like a no-brainer. For this momma, it meant not having to leave the house, plan anything or force the older siblings to sit still for poses, all while still capturing what life was like just 3 weeks after giving birth to their newest addition. I ended up with dozens of photos of these 2 older siblings loving on their new little brother so hard that it looks like I asked them to... but nope. All this snuggling, hugging & kissing happening was completely unprompted & judging by mom's reaction, it happens daily. Welcome to the world, baby Hank! I think its safe to say, you're surrounded by LOTS of love already![tg_masonry_gallery gallery_id="9600" layout="wide" columns="4"]
So here's the thing... Moms are f@#$^%! rock stars. Like seriously. I mean, I knew *mine* was amazing, but I figured I was just biased. Meeting as many families as I do shooting photos & sometimes even spending all day with them, has given me an immense appreciation for moms & the jobs they do raising littles (dads, you're great too but this one is for the ladies).
This year for Mother's Day, I want to honor what mother's value most.
So, moms... What do YOU value most? What are some of your favorite moments with your children? Do you have your answers? Now imagine having professional photos of these kind of special moments that you can cherish forever.
Think of an activity you love to do with your children & I'll tag along to document it. Maybe its when you bring your kids to get ice cream after school & they tell you all about their day... or your weekly trip to the library when they get to pick out a new book. Maybe its getting to pass down your mom's signature cookie recipe & baking together at home... or perhaps its simply the moments before your kids go to sleep when you climb into bed with them and read a story... I can give you a million ideas, but my challenge for you is for you to identify the moments you value the most.
Mommy & Me Mini Session Special
Up to 1 hour of documentary-style shootingPhotos presented in a private online galleryHigh-resolution digital downloads
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*Must be within 10 miles of 33324 & book by May 31, 2018
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Knowing that tomorrow is never promised... what do you want to remember the most?Maybe its how your family cuddles into your favorite spot on the couch... or how happy your kids get when you take a trip to the local ice cream parlor. Maybe you always want to remember how your daughter once used anything she could to play dress up... or how your son used to turn any piece of furniture into a fort... Whatever it is, I have to guess that your favorite memories do not include the painful hour of bribing your perfectly-groomed children for forced smiles in an unfamiliar park. So why are those the photos we tend to hang on our walls & share with our family?Meet The G's - Grant & Grace. I got to spend 2 awesome days with them hanging at home, going for ice cream, watching Harry Potter in the park & taking a trip down the street to Wekiwa Springs. Thanks to my Dicapac case for my Fuji camera, I was even able to jump in the water with them & still never stop shooting. The result was over a hundred photos that will forever serve as uncensored memories of The G's story at that moment.
Click here to find out more about my documentary family sessions.
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The first photo in this gallery was the instant reaction to pulling my camera out while playing with 4-year old Elena in her room. I immediately realized that documenting truly candid photos of the day could be a difficult challenge for me. She was clearly used to the camera & loved to give me her best hand-on-the-hip model pose & smile anytime I pointed it toward her. However, in the end, the day was still completely unscripted. Our at-home document session consisted of an introduction to all of her books & baby dolls, a game of tickle monster (with the greatest tickle-monster gloves ever), riding around the neighborhood in her sweet pink Corvette, a pillow fight & so much more... I'm not sure who had more fun in the process, Elena or me. The photos that resulted capture so much natural emotion & laughter that would not have been easy to achieve in a boring studio... and the added bonus is that they are so much more personal & special having taken place in their home.[tg_grid_gallery gallery_id="8235" layout="wide" columns="4"]
Crafts, smoothies, Mario Kart & more... a typical Sunday morning for this awesome family & it was great to be a part of it. I guess its safe to say that these two cuties have grown up with my camera. From newborn sessions, to large family portraits, cake smashes & birthday parties... this time we decided to do something a little different: an at-home documentary session. I'm always striving to find the real moments within posed sessions at a park or beach you may have never even been to... so these take it one step further. More personal, more candid & more real life. There wasn't much of an agenda, because letting life happen results in moments like a private patio dance performance to Sia's The Greatest... or an unprompted hug for mommy or an angry drum solo... & course, lots of laughs. The snowflakes they made turned out much cuter than I had imagined - or tried to imagine when they first started, but I should have known not to question the ideas of the creative mind behind Hello Whimsy Designs. It was a stress-free, relaxed & FUN Sunday morning... and it resulted in a huge collection of real moments that made it very difficult for me to choose my favorites.It was so great to see you all again, congrats on the new house![tg_grid_gallery gallery_id="8375" layout="wide" columns="4"]