Baby Eleanor (Nora) | Seattle Newborn Photographer

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Baby Eleanor (Nora) | Seattle Newborn Photographer

Do you ever have the feeling that people come into your life for a reason? I mean like every single person?

I feel like this about the families that I capture. Jenny contacted me for a maternity and newborn package. We have since gone on to stay in touch online and we have a ton in common. ;) She is a strong and motivated mother, doctor, AND business owner. I am lucky to have met her. 

Their newborn session was laid back and fun. We chatted about live with kids and I captured them enjoying their sweet new baby. Newborn Photography is such a gift and I am lucky to be able to do it. 

Enjoy! 

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Baby Juliet | Seattle Newborn Photography

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Baby Juliet | Seattle Newborn Photography

If there is one type of session I am most excited about right now it is this type. Fresh 48 newborn photography, or as I like to call it, birth space sessions. To capture a baby this fresh is a true honor. Get in touch with me if you think you would like this time captured for your family here in Seattle. I can't wait to meet you! 

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Family Posing That Works | Photography Tutorial

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Family Posing That Works | Photography Tutorial

When I am working with a family my main goals are to capture love and connection; a glimpse into the essence of what makes a human relationship.  I do not want my clients to have images that are stiff and uncomfortable (albeit well-dressed) versions of themselves.  I want them to end up with images that convey a feeling, and that bring them back to a fleeting moment in time.  

Without a sense of connection you are simply capturing the pose and their outfits.  Perceivable connection gives family photos a human feel, and makes everything contained in them appear genuine.  

Once you give yourself the creative freedom to go beyond traditional, stiff and posed family portraits, you can create artistic and emotive images. I like to think of my approach more as guiding than posing.  

Here are five of my go to “poses”, and how I bring out emotion within the each one.  I try to get maximum value (the greatest number of potentially usable frames) from each pose. Getting value from poses is especially important with families, as young children with limited focus are often involved

 

Standing

 

I ask them all to hold hands and spread out a bit to form a line.  I make sure that they are always holding hands to keep the physical connection present.  I ask them first to look at me, then I encourage the family to look at each other.  Often the children continue to look at me because they are curious.  There are two layers of connection here. Their actual physical connection and the connection to me and the camera with their eye contact. Next I bring them all in tight while standing and ask them to look at each other.  If they are having trouble relaxing and engaging naturally, I ask them to start talking and joking. This yields more genuine expressions and relaxed body postures.  The connection is exhibited by their close physical contact, eye contact, and casual interactions with each other.  

 

Sitting

 

I usually ask the family to sit on the ground.  This is the most posed and traditional image I get, however that does not mean it has to be stiff.  I want their bodies to make one contiguous shape, no matter how many subjects there are.  I ask the parents to sit right next to each other, then put the children on top of the parents laps or very close in front of them.  Make sure that you can see the parents heads and that the parents have good posture!  I make noises and sing songs to hold the children’s attention just long enough to capture a shot with everyone looking at me.  You have two layers of connection here; subject connection through close physical contact and connection to the camera through eye contact.

If it seems too stiff to have all the family looking, or you simply want to yield another shot from this pose, stand back and ask the family to talk to each other and pretend you aren’t there.  They don’t need to be looking to make a strong and connected portrait.  Shooting a family interacting invites the viewer to contemplate the family and their loving relationship.  




 

Tickle Pose

 

This is my personal favorite pose as it always yields a carefree and connected shot.  Immediately after I made everyone sit and look at me, I ask the parents to gently tickle the children and remind them to look at the children while they do it.  The kids laugh and have fun and the result is an image full of love and joy in an unbridled manner.

 

Laying Down

 

I love to have my families lay on a blanket together.  First ask the parents to lay down next to each other.  Then ask the children to lay on top of their parents.  This usually makes the children laugh and because it is silly they are excited to execute this pose.  Next ask the parents to look at each other and the kids to look at you. This creates a close and playful moment which is loaded with connection.  The children’s eye contact draws you in, and physical proximity is a layer of connection which combines well with the parents gazes toward each other.  

 

Movement Poses

 

Capturing connection with movement creates a captivating portrait.  I will often ask the parents to hold hands and stand back and ask the children to hold hands and walk or run  toward me.

 

To get the whole family involved in movement, I ask them to hold hands and spin around in a circle slowly while singing a song.  Another option is to ask them to hold hands and walk away from or toward you, or engage them in an activity like playing in the waves.  


Ask dad to toss one of the children in the air.  As he is doing this ask the rest of the family to stand back and watch.  An added bonus will be if you get the family members who are watching to touch in some way or participate in an activity like dancing or twirling.  

Simply encourage them to play, run, jump, or splash. They will have fun and you will capture a real moment. 

Movement creates a dynamic layer of connection.  The viewer is drawn in by the authentic facial expressions and body language that come out when the family is moving.  The viewer is connected to the activity, even if more static, perhaps pondering what the primary subjects are doing.  It is as if the viewer has a private glimpse into the family’s unique relationship or dynamic.


Family portraiture can be artistic and intimate.  I encourage you to relax and enjoy your family sessions.  Explore the deep love and connection that is present in every family, and discover how to convey these emotions through your creative work.  A successful session will often inspire a family to invite you into their usually private, intimate world.

If you want to explore my style of family photography, check out my Lifestyle Family Photography workshop.

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Baby Marley | Seattle Newborn Photography

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Baby Marley | Seattle Newborn Photography

Oh this baby. Oh this family. I can't believe it has taken me so long to share this Seattle in home Newborn Photography session. 

In home sessions have a very special feel about them. It is an absolute privilege that I am invited into a families most intimate space, their home, especially after such a monumental life event like having a baby. 

I walked into this home and the whole family was on the master bed. My kind of family! That is exactly where my tribe always hangs out. There was an easy feel about them, laid back and relaxed despite the fact that they had a newborn. 

We captured them simply loving on their new addition as well as each other. They laughed, snuggled, and played. It was a dreamy morning for me and I hope you will enjoy these images. 

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Lifestyle Family Photography Workshop | Online Photography Workshop

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Lifestyle Family Photography Workshop | Online Photography Workshop

Hi Friends,
One of my favorite quotes from a photographer comes from the master, Annie Leibovitz

"A thing that you see in my pictures is that I was not afraid to fall in love with these people."
Annie Leibovitz


I believe this with my whole heart.

I remember when I was first starting I heard a lot about how business should not be personal. How your business should not be an extension of who you are. But this is not true.

I connect to my families on a very deep level. This is why I only take 2 sessions a week. I literally feel emotionally drained after a shoot. Because I poured into my families so that they would be willing and able to pour back to me and allow me to make them into art.

But this takes time and practice. It takes a while to find your way in the family photography world. And you will. I promise.

We put a lot of pressure on ourselves when we set out to capture a family. We feel pressure to nail that perfect photo and make a family look beautiful. But here is the thing... it's not our job to make a family look perfect or even beautiful. It's our job to show them that they already are perfect and beautiful. That we see them for the imperfectly flawed beauty that they are. 

Two or three times a year I teach an online workshop on Lifestyle Family Photography through Click Photo School. It is called The Art Of Lifestyle Family Photography. This is a month full of self exploration and really digging into the artistic side of family photography. Leaving you with a fresh perspective and the tools you need to run a successful family session. If you are interested in finding out more about this, registration is open and there are still a few full particpation seats available. There are always plenty of study along available if you would feel more comfortable going at your own pace. 
 

Find Our More About The Art Of Lifestyle Family Photography

What has been the absolute best part of the class for me has been staying in touch and watching my students grow and learn. We have a very active Facebook group that you will get access to after the completion of the class. The girls in there are the most positive, amazing women ever! 

I hope to see some of you there! 

 

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Carlson Family | Seattle Family Photography

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Carlson Family | Seattle Family Photography

I have had the absolute pleasure of capturing the Carlson family a few times over the years. We have also become friends and had the joy of spending time together as well. 

These parents are the "cool, laid back" parents we all try to be. They travel and have adventures with their boys regularly and really know how to have a great time! I love spending time with them. This is what I absolutely adore about Lifestyle Family Photography! It simply feels like I get to hang out with a bunch of amazing families all the time.

We met on a fall morning at a beautiful Seattle area park. It had been raining but right when we arrived the sky opened up and the sun came through giving us the most amazing, magical morning light. This was such a beautiful fall family session in Seattle. 

I hope you enjoy this sweet family! 

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Boutique School Photography | Fine Art School Portrait Workshop

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Boutique School Photography | Fine Art School Portrait Workshop

Last year I launched an in person photography workshop called Schooled. This was my first workshop teaching all about implementing Fine Art School Portraits in your business. I was able to reach about thirty people from across the country. My favorite part of the workshop was that we actually photographed children so they left with a full portfolio, ready to launch. 

After receiving hundreds, nearly a thousand emails from photographers from around the world asking me to teach a workshop online, I decided to give it a go. I knew I wanted to make it an active workshop so that my students would be held accountable and really take action on their skills. 

Well, I opened the class for enrollment on April 7th and the students are blowing me away!! They are working hard through the materials, taking action right now and building their portfolios and building a beautiful network of other photographers working toward the same goals. 

My goal is to rise up leaders in the photography community. To pour myself into others so that they can give back to this community and to the families who they serve with their creative gifts. 

My heart is full as I see my students thrive every single day. 

I am sharing a sampling of their gorgeous images. As you can see, they didn't' waste any time and many have already booked schools! I am so very proud of them.

It is not too late to join the class. We have new members joining every day! Join over 150 photographers as they dive into the ins and outs of Fine Art School Portrait Photography and Business. Enrollment is open until Friday at midnight. After that the class will go into the vault for at least six months to a year. I will always keep this as a live workshop because I want you to really commit to this. YOU CAN DO THIS! Join us today! 

Carol Davis 

Carol Davis 

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Baby Eleanor | Seattle Newborn Photographer

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Baby Eleanor | Seattle Newborn Photographer

This little family has graced my blog and social media a few times over the past few months. :) 

When we met for their maternity session I left with butterflies in my tummy. I literally felt like I had finally been reunited with old friends that I had been missing for so long. It was a beautiful fall evening. The sun was warm and wrapped itself around them like a blanket. Then, we met again in the hospital when sweet baby girl arrived. And finally, they invited me into their home for this sweet in home newborn session. 

It felt like an easy, sleepy morning in their home. The Christmas tree was still up, coffee was brewing, and love was in fact in the air. They held their little treasure with the most tender of arms, soaking her in, reveling in the fact that they now had a baby girl to love and protect. 

It was beautiful. And I will admit I was sad as this meant out time of meeting regularly was over. They are just the best. Luckily we already have plans to do a family session in the summer. 

Enjoy this little family. I sure know I do! 

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Fine Art School Portraits | Seattle Boutique School Photographer

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Fine Art School Portraits | Seattle Boutique School Photographer

This has been my fifth school portait season! I can't even believe that. I have enjoyed forming relationships with select schools in the Seattle area and have especially enjoyed getting to spend so much time with all of these beautiful children. 

It is so funny how many different expressions kiddos will give you. You just have to allow them to be themselves instead of asking them to do something stiff or awkward. 

Today I am sharing a little sampling form a recent neighborhood preschool I photographed. How cute are they?! 

It just so happens that today is the official launch of my very first Fine Art School Portrait class. If you are interested in learning more click the button below. 

Enjoy!

 

 

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Baby Alex | Seattle Newborn Photographer

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Baby Alex | Seattle Newborn Photographer

This in hospital newborn photography session was so meaningful to me. You see, I used to be a NICU and L&D nurse and I miss that job often. I spent ten years observing so many beautiful emotions and connections. To be able to go in to a NICU and capture all of these things with my camera was incredible. It was like my lives were colliding. 

Newborn photography is so important. 

These moments are fleeing and I promise they will soon seem like distant memories. 

When this mama contacted me to photograph them while their second baby was in the NICU I was thrilled. 

We met on a Sunday morning. Their two year old was delightful and so excited to introduce me to her new baby. They went through their normal routine of diaper changes and kangaroo care (skin to skin) and I had the privilege of documenting it. 

I hope to do more in hospital newborn sessions soon. It was such an honor. 

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