I'm here to present you with this- a new take on family portraits.
Throw away the notion that everyone has to be dressed in perfectly coordinated outfits. Throw away the notions that everyone needs to be still and smiling and acting happy in a golden field of wildflowers. Toss aside the doubts that may creep into your mind that revolve around the idea of perfection...it exists, but not in the way that it is bombarded at you on social media.
Because although there is nothing wrong with golden fields of wildflowers and expertly coordinated outfits (they make for gorgeous pictures for sure!), that's not what I am here for. I'm here to offer you an alternative, something real. Something pure. Something that lends itself to nostalgia and legacy building. Something low key, but entirely beautiful. Something that speaks to the season of life you are in this very second. Something that is unique to your family and is your brand of perfect.
Something worth remembering.
When I look back at our family photos, I want to feel a sense of romanticized nostalgia. I want to see a picture of my toddler clinging to my legs, face covered in peanut butter and jelly. I want to see us laughing over a book in the midst of pillows and blankets. I want to see them in their old Halloween costumes and rainboots (What is it with toddlers and rainboots? I don't know, but I love it!) I want to see our family gathered around the kitchen table talking and laughing, enjoying the food prepared with so much love. I want to see their artwork hung haphazardly on the walls and I want to see their favorite toys being played with. I want to see the messes and the chaos, the entire range of emotions that we go through in a day. I want to see our afternoon bike rides and to be reminded of the pretend games we played.
I want to be able to hear the pictures, to smell them...to truly remember them in my heart.
I want to have a reaction to them.
I feel like if you are here and you are reading this blog, this may be something you want too. Something that speaks to your heart.
So, how do we get there? How do we achieve this?
It's simple. You invite me into your home and you live your life the way you always do, and I take care of the rest. There's no stress and zero judgement from me. I'm not worried about the messes we will create and I'm not worried about seeing meltdowns. This is life... and it's beautiful. I want to blend into your family like an old friend and share these experiences with you. I want to create art out of your ordinary, every day moments that you will treasure more with each year that passes. Life is short. Sometimes it's too short. Take the time to be present in these moments and let the pictures speak for themselves.
To schedule your session or to have a chat about what your needs are, you can contact me here or by clicking the Contact tab above. I am happy to pop on a video call with you or email some additional information.
A few weeks ago, I had the absolute honor of traveling up to the Eastern Shore of Virginia to document an afternoon in the life of this sweet family. Every year, they gift a photo session to the grandmother/mother/mother-in-love and I honestly couldn't think of a more perfect gift to give someone I love.
And even better, when I got there, I was instantly welcomed into their lives.
What greater blessing to give thanks for at a family gathering than the family and the gathering. -Robert Brault
I love looking at an ordinary scene and making art out of what I see. Our ordinary moments are so beautiful, we only need to look a little closer.
I immediately was ushered onto a boat for a ride to one of their family's favorite destinations, lovingly named Crab Beach. We searched for crabs and mermaid treasures.
They enjoyed an afternoon of swimming, playing, riding dirt bikes, and eating delicious food.
I couldn't help but to be reminded of my own childhood and thinking of my own past experiences (you can read more about what I have to say about on this topic in this blog) . These familial places that hold deep meaning to our families help to shape our life and our memories. When they think back on their childhood, they will remember the people and the setting- and when these together are combined...it feels a lot like home.
I hope these images are something this family will treasure.
To schedule your own Day in the Life Session, please contact me here or by using the Contact tab above. I would love to talk with you about how best to preserve your memories and how I can serve your family.
Wondering what a Day in the Life Session with me is like? Read this blog post to find some helpful information and maybe answer some of your ponderings.
If you follow me on social media (if you don't, here's my Instagram and here's my Facebook ) you've probably heard me whine and complain that summer is gone. Officially. It's just...gone. I'm like a child- I'm just plain sad and a big ball of big emotions. I love the warmth of summer, the freedom, the beach, the sunshine, the laid back summer vibes... and it's just slowly ended and faded to Fall.
You also might know that as a family, we participate in something known as the 1000 Hours Outside Challenge. It's a big part of our life. We aim to spend 1000 hours each year outside. And to say that it's been life changing is an understatement. It truly has changed our lives and how we view our time outside. I also know that I really, really, really struggle in the winter, so we try to pack in as many hours outside as possible in the summer months.
So, I try to update ya'll on what we've been doing to keep busy and how we spend our time outside. Honestly, for us, summer is the easiest month to spend time outside. We don't mind the heat. We stay hydrated and seek shade when possible. We get our hours in early in the morning and late in the afternoon. This year the kids pooled all of their money together (and with a little help from mom and dad) got a blow up water slide and that has been a HUGE hit! We have enjoyed it so much and so have the neighborhood kids!
Here are some of our favorite ways to rack up hours in the summer:
We have had so much fun this summer. I enjoy our time together and I like to think we make the best of it. Winter becomes a lot more challenging for me, but it's all about harmony and prioritizing your time.
If you'd like to read more about what we did previously, check out this blog post.
If you'd like more information about the 1000 Hours Outside Challenge, click here to be taken to their website.
Jess is a photographer serving families located in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. She specializes in documentary and storytelling photography.