The George Family: a Motherhood Session.

“To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow.”   -Maya Angelou

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the beautiful mother you see in these photographs, helen joy, wrote me this email months back when she asked me to photograph her family:

 

“I feel that no one has ever captured that certain beauty I feel wash over me when I am with my babies.  Maybe it’s because I never trust the photographer fully to get it or maybe it’s because my kids are crazy and I feel like I spend photo sessions trying to get everyone to get into place and just so for the very non flexible photographer.  I would love one “imperfect” shot of me with them.  I know and trust that you will be able to capture it.  I told my mother the other day that I hate looking into the mirror because I FEEL so much more beautiful than I see in a photograph or in a mirror.  So I prefer to live my days just feeling the beauty.  This is not to say I want to look thinner or more beautiful.  It’s just that no one has ever caught that still, small moment of a piece of heaven that I feel scattered through our chaotic days.  I believe after all my searching that you are the one who can find the beauty in me that I feel when I’m with my babies.”

 

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what a gift those words were to me.   i kept that secret hope for the documentation of her motherhood tucked deep into my heart as i took these photographs.  when i look at them i can almost hear her loud, deep, contagious laugh, her head thrown back in bliss, standing on the sand nursing her baby girl, her hair blowing wild in the island wind.

so, to you, helen joy, i say this:  YOU are a masterpiece.  not only because you are a mother, but because you are the most alive human being i think i have ever met, full of a million feelings and convictions and dreams.  you have shown me that beauty shines from within, and that intoxicating light just pours out of you, drenching everyone in your presence with tenderness.  you are a gift.  thank you for choosing me.  i hope that when you look at these images you see truth and depth and all of the beauty i witnessed.  it was almost too much for my eyes to hold.

 

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these photographs were taken on the tiny island of north captiva on the southern tip of florida.  the george family drove 13 hours each way to meet me for the session all the way from asheville, north carolina!  they rented a little beach house for a few days where they knew it would be as close to their happy place as they could imagine.

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Posted in * Family Sessions | 28 Comments

The Beaman Family in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

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the beaman family invited me into their home in jackson hole, wyoming to document their summertime in this beautiful current chapter of life for their family.  they all planned to meet in jackson hole at the river house and i would meet them there as well… the place where they all gathered each year for summertime and Christmastime and to pack in as many memories as possible in the short time they were all together.  the barn out in the flower pasture was brought to the property all the way from virginia and put back together out there in the perfect spot.  as their daughters flew in, each from a different school, i got to spend a magical afternoon beforehand with a good man and his boy and their dog, their favorite thing to do together.  i got to stand back and soak in all in, a true postcard of scenery before my eyes with the snow peaked Grand Teton Mountains in the background!  the next morning as everyone trickled in, i sat at their breakfast table and listened to stories from years past and crazy summer adventures along the water’s edge in that house.  i had fresh pancakes made by mama with extra butter to the sounds of laughter.  the boys were out kayaking, the ladies knitted and then played volleyball out in the yard (they were competitive, it was awesome) and i had the honor of photographing the rest of their day in the sunshine.  i loved the whole experience of this.  the gathering.  the time set aside with intention to love and savor.  and then the documentation of memory making where the whole family can be themselves, doing the things each of them hopes the children remember most when they are grown.  i am so looking forward to photographing more of these family reunion weekend gatherings in my harvest sessions this coming year.

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Posted in * Family Sessions, * Themed Sessions | 9 Comments

wildflower. mother. wife. believer. artist. farmer. writer. dreamer.

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