Sunday, October 15, 2017

Catching up with Mair ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

Some of you may remember the adorable little girl with the inspirational backstory whom I photographed last summer.  In my session-wrap post I wrote that I hoped to be photographing her for years to come.  Well, it looks like I was given at least one more year of that distinct honor, and I am happy to bring some highlights of that shoot to you all today.

Once again, we had lovely weather to work with (though, mercifully, not so hot), and once again Mair's Mama brought some adorable outfits for her little lady to wear.  For a dynamic prop we even used bubbles- a definite winner with the toddler set!

(Speaking of toddlers, I was reminded once again why I really love photographing little ones this age.  They are so busy, sometimes obstinate, but full of wonder and delight at simple fun (bubbles, peek-a-boo, story books, flowers).  The little years are fleeting and they seem to go by in a blur, but pointing the camera toward the blur sometimes yields marvelous results!)


Bubbles and sunshine... I love it!

What a beautiful smile!

It is such a blessing to me to watch this little girl grow.  I hope you feel the same when you see these little glimpses of this sweet and precious girl!

Until next time,
~ Kathryn

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Those Terrific Turners ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

This summer marked my fifth photo shoot with some of my favorite clients, who also happen to be dear friends: the Turner Family.  Each time I've photographed them, I've thought they just couldn't get  any more more endearing and photographically-likeable (a term I'm coining right now to describe that feeling you get when you see strangers in a photo and think to yourself, "I would like to hang out with them.  They look like good people.").  With their maternity shoot last spring, they really upped the ante, and when their beautiful daughter was born, it was clear that things were just going to keep getting cuter at the Turner household.

So when I was called upon to do a family session for the Turners this summer, with their newly one-year-old daughter, I was already excited for the end result.  True to form, the Turners gave me excellent material to work with on our photo shoot day.  Of course, all that means is that an already loving family did all their normal loving stuff- just while wearing especially nice outfits, at a beautiful state park, at the "golden hour" of the afternoon, with me around to photograph them.

For a nice nod to their maternity shoot, we chose the same location and many of the same specific areas of the park to shoot in, and we brought along the same beautiful vintage chair.  And like that session, the love this family has for each other shone through and lit up every photo.  (Even more than that beautiful golden sunlight.  Which is really saying a lot, because... man- that sunlight is amazing!)

The light in these first 3 shots is incredible.  I toned down the warmth and its still so golden!

What a blessed little girl!

That sweet little rocking chair is a family heirloom of theirs.  I love working those kinds of props in to the shoot!

That chair is back!  And so versatile!

See what I mean about the love?

Double click to open this photo larger and you'll see that cute little nose-scrunch smile up close!

This is my favorite photo of the whole shoot!

This was one of those unexpected shots that I ended up really liking.  It's fun to capture the curiosity of small children on camera!

 As always, I love the way these Turner shoots turn out!  I hope you all do, too!

'Till next time,
~ Kathryn

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Sunshine with the Simmons Family ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

I recently had the opportunity to photograph the Simmons family- a lovely bunch with five beautiful and energetic children!  We decided on Fort Steilacoom Park for our session (which you may find familiar since I did the Hayman family's shoot there recently as well!).

What a beautiful and versatile location it is.  With the old farm buildings and the interestingly-shaped trees, we found plenty of natural props for the kids to play on and around.  This family has so much fun together, and so much love for each other, it was a privilege just to be there capturing the magic with my camera!  Scroll down and click on the individual photos to see for yourself.  The Simmons clan is definitely one big happy family!

This might be one of my all-time favorite photos.  Unorthodox posing, but truly a special shot!

Brothers photo!

You all know I am a sucker for the sweet Mom & Dad shot!

Sometimes at the end of a session, tickling is the best bet for a good smile!

Just in time for Father's Day- the Father & Sons shot!

See?  Aren't they just such an adorable group?  These little ones definitely don't lack any fun or love in their lives.  I'm so glad I had the chance to photograph them!

Until next time,
~ Kathryn

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

A Mini-Shoot with the Millers ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

It's hard to believe that the last time I did an official family portrait session for the Miller family was in 2015!  A lot has happened in their lives since then, and the photos below may give you a bit of a hint as to the most obvious change...

That's right- they had a baby boy!  That sweet and lively boy is now one year old, so we thought it would be the perfect time to photo-document this new season of their family life.  As is our custom, we went to Blueberry Park in Tacoma, which is beautiful all year round.  This time of year, the bushes are all in full blossom- with millions of little white flowers promising a fruitful summertime harvest of berries.  We also chose to do our session after dinner time, when the light was at its best- dreamy and yellow and bright.  

As I have become accustomed to with the Miller family, the session turned out beautifully.  The love they all have for each other was easy to see (and capture), and the new element of sibling interaction was fun to photograph as well.  Just scroll down through the photos below and see for yourself!  (Click on any individual photo to view it larger.)

Aren't those pictures just a breath of fresh air?  I don't know if it's the colors, the light, or the subjects, but these photos make me smile.  I hope they had the same effect on you!  

Until next time,
~ Kathryn

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Catching up with the Haymans ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

As I've said before, repeat clients are my favorite types of clients!  The Hayman family is a perfect example.  Back in the fall of 2011, they were the winners of my "free photo shoot giveaway," which they cashed in on the following spring.  Since that first photo session, I've done two newborn shoots and two family shoots for them, and each one has been more fun than the last.

About a month ago, they drove about 2.5 hours up to Tacoma to meet me for their most recent session- a mini family shoot at Fort Steilacoom Park. The weather was beautiful, the park was charming, and the Hayman girls were full of energy and smiles for me.  It was a perfect combination!  Scroll down to see a glimpse of our lovely afternoon in Steilacoom:

(As always you can click on an individual photo to see it larger.)

Ahh, the sweet love of sisters.  Intermittent, but precious!  ;)

These old barns at Fort Steilacoom make excellent backdrops!

Cherry blossoms make excellent props, don't they?

If you know the Haymans, you know how appropriate this photo is.  They are busy, but they're all in it together, and they're teaching their girls how to be healthy and active!

See?  Don't those photos just make you smile?  I can't wait to see how adorable the Haymans will be the next time I photograph them!  Thanks for looking, and have a great weekend!

~ Kathryn

Monday, April 3, 2017

My Outdoor/ Indoor shoot with the Medawars! ~ Tacoma Family Photographer

Before spring had even sprung this year, I had the opportunity to do a family shoot for my friends, the Medawars.  Though I didn't know it at the time, this session would go down in the history books of my photographic career as one of the most potentially disastrous, with (thankfully) a wonderful finished product. With high hopes, umbrellas, and wardrobe change options, we planned their session for a weekend day with a reasonable-looking weather forecast and hoped for the best.  As many of you know, I shoot outdoors for almost all types of sessions- even in winter.  I will admit that that's even a point of pride for me.  But on this particular day, my resolve (and theirs) was about to be tested.

The Medawars had to drive a decent way to get down to the Tacoma area, but when they arrived, the sun was shining and the only hint at what was to come was the persistently cold wind coming in from the Puget sound.  Undeterred, we loaded into the car and drove the quick 5-minute trip to Blueberry Park (one of my favorite locations year-round).  As we got out, I remember saying "Wow, it's getting colder, isn't it?"  About 30 seconds later, rain began to pelt down on us at a 45-degree angle.  I considered getting out the umbrellas that we'd planned to incorporate into the shoot, but the wind was too strong, so I left them.

As the Medawars' son climbed out of the car about a minute later and commented on the cold, we grown-ups tried to reassure him that once we got moving, we would hardly notice the bad weather.  It was about this time that the rain turned into snow, and then hail.  The changes in the weather were so fast and so detrimental to our cause that it was almost comical.  Almost, but not quite.  At that point, we all wanted to be done with the session (which is not so good when it hasn't even begun yet), so we walked through a small forested area to get to the clearing where we'd be doing most of our shoot.

As the junior verbal member of our expedition, the Medawar's son again stated the obvious fact that this weather was terrible.  I think it went something like, "Daddy!  It's TOOOOO COOOOOOLD!  I wanna go hooooome!"  I have to hand it to his Dad, though.  He put forward the best effort I've yet seen of turning a Pacific-Northwest "sleet-blizzard" into a hot day at the beach- all with the power of imagination.  Their son, bless his heart, was doing an amazing job of playing along.  He imagined the bitter cold was actually warmth, and the blustery wind was actually crashing waves.

But everyone has a breaking point.

Needless to say, I am amazed that we even got the two pictures we did (see below) before they, out of an understandable concern for their children's fingers and toes, asked me if we could just leave the park and try something indoors.  I wasn't about to argue with them.  Even my stubborn photographer's optimism was waning, and no Photoshop editing can turn a frozen and tear-stained grimace into a smile.  So, for the first time in the history of my photographic career, we stopped the session and went home.  To be honest, it felt so good getting back into the car.  We had been at the park for an admittedly miserable 10 minutes...

Once we had come to our senses and our eyes, noses, and fingers were thawing out on the drive home, I began to formulate plan B.  Though I haven't done it for a family shoot in years, I pulled out my backdrop stands and backdrops, along with my photo lights, and started setting up a portrait studio in my living room.  (The blessing, of course, was that the weather conditions in my living room were much more controlled than the craziness outside.)

The rest, as you can see below, turned out swimmingly.  We had warm, serene, and sweet family photos with happy children and parents, and not a single incidence of frostbite!  The real kicker was that about an hour later, the sun came out, the wind stopped, the sky was blue, and it looked like June outside.  All I could do was shake my head.  I guess the Medawars were meant to have a mostly-indoor session!  And considering how our shoot began, I was beyond grateful for the way it all turned out!  Take a look through the photos below and see for yourself.  It's *almost* like we planned it this way!  ;)

Look  at these two!  Quite the dynamic little duo.  :)

I just love that Mother-Daughter tenderness.

So there you have it, dear readers!  We started out with lemons and came out with lemonade.  Let's hope I never misjudge the bad-weather risk so completely again!  I want to extend a big thank you to the Medawar family for being so flexible and good-natured, and for being such an adorable family for me to photograph!

Until next time,
~ Kathryn