Danny.

I thought I would get back to blogging about my sessions one at a time again now that I am caught up to July!  Earlier this month I met this cutie and his Mom in a local park to capture some milestone photos for his first birthday.  BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-26I mean…seriously…isn’t he the cutest little guy!!BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-5BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-2BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-34He made the best faces and I tried to capture them all.BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-41BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-42I also wanted to get some shots of the things he could do right now.BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-21BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-22And I brought along some fun jumbo letters and a big #1 just for kicks.BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-9BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-32BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-13BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-14BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-18.jpgHe even showed me his favorite book.BecciHethcoatPhotography-Milestone Session-Wheaton-24Such a fun session!  And you don’t need to go far to get great shots…we have so many local parks, interesting urban areas, and forest preserves right here in our town.

Happy Birthday Danny!

XO

June!

Still playing catch up…but I wanted to share some of the yummy photo goodness that happened around here in June.  We spent most of the month traveling but I still managed to squeeze in some work.  Here are a few of my early summer sessions…

First there were these sweet boys.  They were a little bit older than most of my newborns but we still got some great shots!  I had never photographed identical twins before and one lesson I learned was to mark the photos as I took them because once I got home, I couldn’t tell them apart!  Oops…

And, if one set of twins wasn’t wonderful enough, I also had these precious boy/girl twins.  They were so good for our session along with their older brother.  We did this as a lifestyle session which is always better with young siblings as they are definitely more comfortable in their own environment.  This had me wishing that I had twins of my own.  So much cuteness!!

Of course, all of my newborns in June weren’t twins.  I also traveled to this family to capture their brand new girl and her big brother in a lifestyle session.  She was so alert, just taking it all in.  Even though these were all newborn sessions technically, I always try to capture a few of the siblings too.

I was excited to do some milestone sessions last month as well.  This one was especially close to my heart….my beautiful nieces came to the studio to capture some 1 year photos for the baby.  It seems like only yesterday that I was shooting her newborn photos.  Time sure does fly quickly.  I might be a little bit bias but I think these girls have the most amazing eyes.  Sweet sisters…

Of course I also managed to squeeze in some family sessions in June.  I love big families and this one was perfect.  We had a beautiful day, a gorgeous location, and that little sweetie….I just couldn’t stop taking photos of her.  I hope her Mom brings her back for another session with me soon!

I met this family in a local park near our downtown for some urban/park photos.  These girls were a riot and had me cracking up throughout the entire session.  Seriously…I wanted to take them home with me.  They had so much character and I tried hard to capture all of that personality in my photos.  I hope I succeeded!

Add in all of our travels and June ended up being a crazy busy month.  Of course, I wouldn’t have it any other way!  And, as I wrap up the sessions I have delivered in July I realize it was equally busy/crazy.  I hope to start sharing sessions more often on the blog now that our travels have ended and we are home for the rest of the summer.

I am working on available dates for Fall sessions now.  It’s always weird to think about Christmas card photos in July but that’s how it goes in this business.  Stay tuned for sign up information on my Facebook page….

XO

May…

I usually blog about many of my sessions as they happen but, since we were gone most of June and it’s now July, I thought I needed to catch up a bit faster!  So…here is a recap of a few of my favorite sessions from May (yes…I said May).

My sessions this month covered everything I offer…from weddings to babies to families.  I love maternity sessions, they are sweet and hopeful and exciting.  I recently shot some gender announcement photos for this couple and now their maternity photos.  As I write this I am waiting to hear that they are ready for their newborn session…I can’t believe how time flies.  A little glimpse of a fun maternity session…

Ever wonder what a lifestyle newborn session looks like?  Here are a few snippets from my in home session with baby Jack and his cutie brother.  Lifestyle sessions are becoming more and more popular, and are really great for siblings to be more comfortable in their own homes.

And once they are past the newborn age…there are milestone sessions!  This one year session was also done in the client’s home.  People always worry about whether their house is OK for photography….the lifestyle sessions are meant to capture a moment of your life!  Your house is the perfect place to do that, especially with toddlers who are much more comfortable in their own space.  I love these sweet photos of Danny with his doting parents!

I would say the category that I shoot most is Family.  I love to see my families grow and change through the years.  This family was so loving and fun!  It took a while for the little guy to warm up to me and my camera but, in the end, we got some great shots.  And those shoes…well you know I had to get a photo of those!!

Family coming into town for a visit?  Why not schedule a photo shoot to capture the wonderful memories while they are here?  This extended family doesn’t get together much so getting these photos was really important to them while they were all together this summer.  They were so much fun….I always encourage people to be silly, make funny faces, and interact genuinely, all while snapping away.  You just never know what you will get and this session is a perfect example of that!  Hilarious….

So there is a little look at some of the fun I had in May.  Next up…June sessions…..

I am opening my Fall calendar for session appointments next week!!  Perfect for those Christmas card photos….Fall session times go quickly so let me know if you would like to be on the list for Fall photos!!

Have a great weekend!!

XO

When Mustang married Cowboy…

I love weddings!  And, while I am not a traditional wedding photographer, I have photographed quite a few smaller weddings where having just one person doing the shooting works.  So when Kim contacted me about the possibility of my being her wedding photographer….well….I jumped at the chance.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-23The first thing she told me was that this was not going to be any old ordinary wedding….it was going to be a biker wedding….no white dress, no tuxedos, no bridesmaids.  Sounds right up my alley!Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-4  This wedding did not disappoint…it was full of powerful emotions, loving friends and family, and one of the sweetest love stories I have ever encountered.  Sadly, Kim was involved in a motorcycle accident just prior to the wedding date so she was in a sling for the ceremony and was in quite a bit of pain but you would never have known it to look at the photos.  All that shines through is her love for this man and her joy at finally becoming his wife.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-6Ron & Kim go way back…20 years ago they were actually engaged to each other.  Of course, not everything works out the way it is supposed to and they parted ways. Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-9 Fast forward 20 years….they reconnected…..the spark was there and it took fire.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-8If you spend any amount of time with these two you can feel the deep connection that they have.  Their love is tangible….it can be felt by everyone around them and it brings a smile to your face.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-7Their wedding was a blast!  Seriously….these people know how to have fun.  They lift each other up, make each other laugh, and are not afraid to let me photograph them doing it.  Love these ladies….Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-17Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-16Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-13I wanted to capture some of the more traditional wedding photos…Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-11Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-12Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-WheatonBut then I just went with the party….lots of special moments like when the bride was dancing with her new father in law while the groom watched from the side.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-10And, of course, when ‘Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy’ came on…all the ladies were crowding around the one ‘Cowboy’ in the room.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-20It rained the day of the wedding so no one rode their bikes (my biggest disappointment was no cool Harley photos) but the weather cleared up in the evening which gave us a chance for some beautiful outdoor sunset shots.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-19The Punishers were out in full force for their club president.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-22And you know I had to get one of the groom’s cool rings!  These guys have the best hands for photographing…ever.Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-18Thank you for choosing me to be a part of your special day! Becci Hethcoat Photography-Wedding-Wheaton-21Here’s to Cowboy & Mustang!

XO

 

Belmont Village…Hands of Love Project

(This is me trying to get caught up with the many weeks of not blogging…)

Recently I participated in an amazing project for Belmont Village, a senior living community that offers varying levels of care for our aging population.  I was on their radar as a photographer because my Mom lives in one of their neighborhoods geared toward residents with dementia.MaryWhen they approached me about being the photographer for their “Hands of Love” project, I was thrilled!  The project was a great way to combine my love of photography with my art background.  We discussed the parameters of the project and they gave me complete creative control of the photography which was wonderful.Frank Cummings 2I wanted to wait until the show had taken place to share some of the images and stories from the residents.  I love that this project really highlights the lives that they had prior to coming to Belmont.  People forget sometimes that these seniors who can’t remember things or get angry easily once had careers, families and hobbies. Eleanor 2I spent quite a few afternoons visiting with the residents and taking lots of photos.  They were excited to share their stories and to show me their ‘props’.  We even hosted an event where the families could come and take photos of their hands together with the residents.  This was a huge family who was very excited to have this photo as their loved one was just entering hospice care.Shirley TrudeauEvery person had a story…some were simple and some tugged right at my heart.  Here are some of my favorites…

Meet Bob…Bob HOlm 2Bob used to play baseball.  In fact, he once pitched a no hitter during a very special game.  This is the game ball which was signed by all of the participants.  This ball has been one of Bob’s most prized possessions.  Bob has a grandson who is also a pitcher on a baseball team.  Right before our session, Bob handed down the cherished baseball to his grandson. These are their hands.

Meet Merle…Merle 2Merle is 110 years old.  She has written 11 books, all in long hand in spiral notebooks and all since she turned 70.  She is a prankster with an amazing sense of humor.  My daughter was completely smitten with her when they met and often asks if we can go back to visit.  These are her hands.

Meet Christine…Christine KChristine is a fun lady who painted her nails just for our session.  She used to be a model in her youth and brought a photo from one of her sessions along.  She even offered to model for me, if I ever needed a “more mature lady”.  These are her hands.

Meet Fred & Carol…Fred Hoyum & CaroleThey live together here as they have for many years.  Their wedding photo was up on a high shelf and when I asked them if I could take it down to photograph it with their hands they said “I don’t know why you would want to take photos of these old ugly hands.”  These are their beautiful hands still holding on to each other.

Meet Rute…Rute 3In her youth she was a pianist.  When we asked her to play for us she informed us that she wasn’t sure how any more.  We told her that it was OK, just pretend.  But when she placed her hands on the keys they just seemed to know what to do all by themselves.  These are her hands.

Meet Jim…Jim z 5Jim was a pilot.  His son is also a pilot for the exact same airline.  The bond between them was obvious just in the short time we spent together taking photos.  The son holds his father’s hands because he was too shaky to hold the hat himself.  He is also wearing his father’s watch.  Such a powerful image of their hands.

Meet Mike…Mike JeswithMike was an architect in his younger years.  He wasn’t even going to participate in this project but I happened to see him reading the paper and I started up a conversation with him where I learned that he used to design buildings.  He shared that he had some cool photos of himself in front of a building that was special to him so I ran up to get them and he agreed to pose for this photo for me.  These are his hands.

Meet Bob…Bob MBob brought out his dog tags along with stories about his time in the military.  I love this photo as it speaks to an entire generation of men who were defined by their war time service including many of my own relatives.  These are his hands.

Meet Herman…Herman KampfHerman was a basketball player.  You can tell he is tall even though he was sitting in a wheelchair.  He even pretended to shoot the ball for me.  His love of the game was evident from the moment the ball was handed to him.  These are his hands.

Herb JSo many great stories…too many photos to post them all here.  A few weeks ago they hosted an opening where the photos were on display for both the residents and their families to see.  After the show ended, the framed photos were then gifted to the residents (or family members).  I was sad to see how many of the people that I had just met were already gone to higher level care…even my friend Bob the baseball player.  Much to my surprise…Bob and his family organized a visit to attend the photography show.  He is currently in rehab after an amputation but he begged them to let him go for the evening to see his photo with this family and they finally said YES!  It was touching to see them there.  Barbara DThis is my Mom’s hand holding the hand of my daughter.  This is the hand that changed my diapers, prepared the food that nourished me and taught me how to be paint.  And this is the hand of the child that I have done the same for.

Hands are a powerful thing.

XO

Benjamin.

One of the most wonderful parts about being a photographer is watching families grow and change and this family is no exception.  I first met this couple when they hired me to capture their maternity photos.  These are some of my favorites from that session.  IMG_1890IMG_1807IMG_1953Of course I was so excited to finally meet this little cutie during his newborn session.IMG_0072IMG_0200IMG_0304In a blink of an eye they were reaching out to schedule his 6 month session!  I couldn’t believe how big he had gotten when he came by the studio for his photos. IMG_9438Look at that smile!IMG_9456IMG_9474He wasn’t quite sitting up on his own yet so we had to be quick and creative with poses.IMG_9518 I love this shot!  And black and white photos of course.IMG_9449I love this shot.IMG_9610IMG_9598-2It’s always special when families bring along props that are meaningful to them.  Like this name puzzle.IMG_9842IMG_9812And Sophie the chewable giraffe.IMG_9763We even attempted one in my new vintage suitcase.  Tough when you aren’t really sitting up well yet but we did manage to pull out one cute shot.  Maybe for the one year photos!IMG_9680I am already looking forward to our next session when this little guy turns one!  Cake smash anyone?IMG_9568XO

Family session at Cantigny

IMG_0294I met this young family when the Mom contacted me about photographing their upcoming wedding.IMG_0327IMG_0271While we were discussing the wedding plans, it came up that they had not had family photos taken recently.  A great opportunity for us to work together and for them to get updated family photos!IMG_0601IMG_0640We had originally planned to meet up at another location but, upon arrival, I realized that it was so crowded that taking photos would be impossible. (Prom!)  So we made a quick change that took us to Cantigny.  IMG_0384I love Cantigny!  My family has visited there since the kids were small and I shoot there often so I am very familiar with all of the great locations for setting up photos.  Imagine my surprise when we arrived to find the entire place torn apart!  I knew the museum and tanks were under construction but I had no idea that half of the grounds were also behind barricades and fences.  Oh no!  IMG_0568IMG_0579Add to that many of the same prom goers along with several wedding parties.  Total chaos!  I was nervous about how we would find spots to take photos and keep these two toddlers from getting distracted by the other action.IMG_0542Luckily….Cantigny is a big place filled with gorgeousness so we just moved through the park taking our turn at each popular spot!  IMG_0304IMG_0371IMG_0425IMG_0415And…happily…you would never know that this place was one giant construction zone in the photos!  IMG_0720I even managed to sneak in a few shots of just the parents!  IMG_0759IMG_0790IMG_0792We’ll call these ‘engagement photos’…IMG_0805I love this shot…and the fact that she is holding the skittles we used to keep the little people interested there in the end.  Real life….

Interested in a session at Cantigny?

Contact me today…

XO