My Jenny O. My Jenntwin. My JMZ. She and I met at work, 14 years ago, and we instantly hit it off. And it's funny, because up until that point, I really hadn't found my Kindred. Yes, I had friends. Really, really good friends. But none that were like the friendships you read about in books or watched in movies. And at 22, I had really resigned myself to the fact that I would never have one. And then I met Jenny. And it really felt like we had been friends our whole lives. Over the last 14 years, we've only lived in the same city for 4. Yet we've celebrated every major life joy together, and we've mourned every life loss. When we do get together, it's as if we haven't been apart. For a second. She married Devin a few years ago, and I instantly loved him. He's just the right amount of everything for her. And two years ago they had Palmer. And I instantly loved him. And still do. Palmer loved the moon in the sky, the grass in the field and throwing rocks everywhere. After our session, I went back to Palmer's new crib and had the opportunity to play and dine with him. I get to take his two year portraits next week (yeah, me!), so I'll save my musings on the boy for later. But I do want to point out that while we dined on armenian pizza and other foreign foods, Palmer ate the food with us. All of it. And loved it (especially the black olives). At two. I couldn't believe it. Anyway, I know Jenny is waiting for her sneak, so I'll end here. Guys, it was so much fun, and I'm looking to next week's two year portaits. Dev, thanks for playing Waiter for the night. And, Jen, BTAPS forever!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Though I certainly enjoyed the almost week long break over Thanksgiving, it wasn't all play. While in Houston, I did have two sessions. . . . but since they were for my BFF and her haute sister, work felt more like . . . play. Terri and her brood were the first to get in front of the camera. Terri is so funny; she's Jenny's older sister. As the oldest, myself, I totally get her Type A-ness. Totally. And I appreciate it. Completely. She called the week before the session and we spent a good chunk of time just discussing her vision for the session. This would be Hayes' first family holiday card, and she wanted something just a bit edgier. She was envisioning plum, greys and brick. The girls, as always, were just too much fun. Sophie was ever the professional during her individual shots, and Miss Mia was constantly thinking about other shots I could do with the fam. "Jenn, what if I'm standing here, Mom is over there, Sophie is here . . . ." It was just too funny. Baby Hayes rocked the camera with his killer blues, and the whole family did a great job putting up with the insane amount of mosquitoes! Terri, great job on the outfits. Loved. It was so great seeing you and your gorgeous fam. Tell the girls to say hi to Parker and Michael for me . . . and enjoy your sneaky!
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Look who Santa brought over for some holiday photos! Four month old Cowen was ready to pose for me yesterday, and it was the perfect way to end a "14 sessions in 7 days" shooting schedule. He's always been such a sweetie, and yesterday he gave me some major smiles and tummy time. He looks ready to hit the slopes in his little hat and booties, and I am counting down the days until our 6 month session! Thanks for bringing him by, April, and thanks for bringing my own little elves milk shakes! Enjoy your sneaky to the peeky . . .
You might remember the lovely Dena from her maternity session a few months ago. We had actually scheduled Baby Bennet's newborn session around that time. And then we waited. And waited. And poor Dena went way past her due date. So we had to tweak our newborn session date. And the day after said session, Bennet decided he was ready to make his debut. And even though he was a little late to the party, he at least gave mama only two hour of labor. Bennet and his new family came out to see me yesterday, and we had a great session. Big Sister Lydia posed for us at the beginning, and then she had a mini-playdate of sorts with my own two children. Bennet was just so sweet and absolutely beautiful. I already see so much of Lydia in him! And for being a successful lawyer and prez of the DAYL, you'd think Dena would be a bit high-strung, on edge . . . something. But she's just so laid back. And the arrival of a second child, who at the moment likes to eat every hour, really hasn't phased her. At all. Jeff was very patient as we worked in his daddy shots, and the whole family couldn't be sweeter. Guys, congrats on the arrival of a perfectly precious little boy. It was such an honor, and enjoy your sneak!
Monday, November 23, 2009
My last session of the weekend was such a sentimental one. Brooke and Kheang first came out to see me when Miss Madelynn was still in Brooke's tummy. A year ago this month I went out to take her newborn photos. And I've since seen them twice. It had been 6 months since our last session, however, and I was just amazed at how much Maddie has grown. Walking now. And even more beautiful than ever. And just amazing to me that I've been photographing her since she was just a little bump. Brooke, as always, went all Martha Stewart on me and brought so many fabulous handmade items for the shoot . . . as well as the biggest treat of the season: Santa! And, I might add, the best Santa. Ever. Seriously, how jolly is he? He and I are in talks for doing a little mini-session next fall, so stay tuned for that, dear reader. In the meantime, enjoy the lovely Miss M. Brooke, who threw a party for Maddie the day prior, also baked a smash cake for the session. Which, clearly, was a hit with the birthday girl! Guys, it's been an incredible honor watching your baby girl grow up the last year. Thank you for allowing me to capture these memories! Special thanks to Santa and Mrs. Claus for coming out to spread some holiday cheer. Enjoy your holidays, and your sneak!
We last saw each other a few months ago, for Hutch's 18 month pics. Two months ago, to be exact. "I'm as big as a house," Rebekah warned me, well into her 6th month of pregnancy at that point. Believe me when I say, she did not look pregnant. At all. In fact, standing next to her (and not prego), I looked like her surrogate. They came back again to see me yesterday for holiday card photos. She's due exactly a month from now. Believe me when I say, she looked barely pregnant. And I mean barely. Hutch loved exploring all the fun toys I have in the studio, and Chip loved chasing after him. Or did he? After some shots inside, I hopped in the family car and took them to my favorite old road. I think if we had let him, Hutch would have driven the tricycle down the entire road. With or without us. Guys, it's always so much fun seeing you. I am so excited for the baby brother or sister you will be giving Hutch, and I wish you much luck in the last month. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, and your sneak!
I last saw this gorgeous family a year ago next month. At the time, Miss Lily was just a baby. And a beautiful one at that. Now she's even lovelier, and running, and dancing, and counting all the way to 10. And she's only 17 months! This year Gen brought along her super sweet parents, Bob and Susan, in from Iowa for the weekend. Bob was so funny. I asked him to pose with his lovely wife, and when I told her to snuggle in to him, he laughed and said, "Only in Texas." Avery's former modeling career just makes him a natural in front of the camera, and Gen was just as sweet and laid back as ever. And Lily. What can I say. With those huge blue eyes and old-fashioned lips, she's just a dream to photograph. Guys, I'm so glad the rain held out. Hope house hunting was fun, and Bob and Susan, come back to Texas soon. Next time I'll have you two-step for the camera! Enjoy your hoiday, guys, and your sneaky!
Friday morning's rain promised to drown my sessions on Saturday. Which had me in a panic. And at 5 a.m. on Friday, Kristin was already emailing me. In a panic. After a few hours of playing the What If game with me, Kristin took matters in to her own hands. I am not sure what she said, dear reader. Or what exactly she did. But I know it involved libations and and a manicure. And on Saturday morning I woke up, timidly peeked out the window . . . and did not see the 70% chance of rainfall that had been predicted the day before! And so I was able to meet the other men in Kristin's life. In previous sessions, I had the pleasure of working with Gigi, Nana and Courtney. Papa Joe and Uncle Matt rounded out the rest of the family, and Matt's ubercute girlfriend, Alyson, came to play my assistant. As I knew they would be, the family was so much fun. It was hard to concentrate on the pictures, as I was desperately trying to hear all the one liners zipping behind me. And believe me, there were plenty. Along with plenty of laughs. Sweet baby Madison was such a trooper in the chilly Novmeber morning air, and by the end of the session she was done. Finished. The one of her "snuggling" with Aunt Court and Uncle Matt is a new favorite outtake ("It looks like she hates us!" Courtney said during the picture taking). Kristin, kudos on organizing this in the first place, in arm-wrestling with Mother Nature and winning, and thanks to everyone for coming out to see me. Enjoy your Thanksgiving . . . and your sneak!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
For weeks, we sent emails back and forth planning out yesterday's session. Our outdoor session. At 2 a.m. on Friday, I woke up to the sound of thunder and the most dramatic lightning display ever. And I knew, then and there, that all of our outdoor plans were a wash. So we moved our holiday themed session indoors, and we made the most of it. Hudson and Kennedy are now 8 months. Mama Ticey and their devoted "CiCi" brought them over Friday morning. CiCi was a machine in trying to get the twins to laugh and smile. And while we did manage to get a few sweet shots, I think my favorite shot of the day, maybe even of the season, is the first one in this post. Christmas Card classic written all over it. Ticey and Court, thanks so much for coming out to see me. I had so much fun playing with these two little elves. Happy holidays, and enjoy your sneaky!
Friday, November 20, 2009
The last time I saw baby Bennet, his hair was much redder and he was crawling. Fast forward 5 months later, and his hair is a lovely shade of blonde. And he's running. Everywhere. But still with that sweet little smile that made me fall in love with him a year ago this month! And Miss Ella. What can I say? I don't know if she loves me. Or the camera. Or both, but my goodness can that child vogue with the best of them. Michelle had scheduled this family session a few months ago, specifically for a family photo. In September, Ella received a lovely turqouise pettiskirt for her birthday ... and she was smitten. She informed Michelle that not only would family photos be taken during the session, but so would Ella in the Pettiskirt photos. And the little fashionista actually went out and picked a pair of sassy pink and white boots to compliment the fluffy skirt. At 4. I die. Chris, god bless him, made the one hour drive out to Rockwall to join his family for a few photos before having to head back to work. And then Michelle and I were left with the wee ones. After you have worked with someone several times (and I know I've said this before), it's like seeing old friends. Michelle and I bonded over the dangerous delisciousness that is Halloween candy and classroom Thanksgiving parties. It was a fast, furious and fun session, and it's always a pleasure. Michelle and Chris, thanks so much for coming out my way. Enjoy your holidays, and enjoy your sneak!