Michael.

IMG_9568Meet Michael.IMG_9395I was lucky enough to meet his awesome wife on a local chat about having celiac years ago.  We had lunch, became friends, and we have shared many dinners, book clubs, etc since.IMG_9392Recently, we were out to dinner and chatting about photography when the subject of head shots came up.  I was sharing my thoughts about how important it is to have great head shots for your professional image when Michael showed me his.  IMG_9449It’s interesting to look at a head shot of someone you don’t know.  You formulate ideas about who they are instantly.  But try looking at a headshot of someone you do know.  IMG_9459Does that shot look like the person they are?  In Michael’s case…the answer was ‘No’.  I suggested that we do some updating and he was in!IMG_9506Anyone who knows Michael knows how appropriate it was that we met in downtown Wheaton at the Starbucks. I thought the urban/vintage vibe would be great for him.IMG_9467Michael is funny, quirky, super smart and interesting.  I wanted his photos to reflect all of those things with a more casual feel.  IMG_9404Of course, we had a few great outtakes….as I would expect with this guy!IMG_9406IMG_9630IMG_9386I told you…he’s a funny guy.  But, mostly, we captured some amazing photos that I think will give someone a sense of his personality long before they meet him.IMG_9631I also put together some photos just for him personally….cool black and white shots that are more artsy than the normal head shot.IMG_9444IMG_9434It was such a fun night.  He discovered a side of Wheaton he never knew existed (including my favorite alleyways) and I enjoyed his interesting and fun company.IMG_9477Thinking of getting new head shots?  Give me a call…I would love to put together a great portfolio of images that will make your LinkedIn page or website a more effective tool.

XO

Prom.

Meet Kenzie.IMG_8511Kenzie is a young Mom of a cute 2 year old son.IMG_8398Recently she wrote on one of my Facebook Mom groups about her desire to attend her high school prom and the struggle to afford such a huge undertaking.IMG_8363The response was immediate, powerful, and inspiring!IMG_8507  These Moms took time from their busy lives to reach out to her offering everything from a dress (which had to be rush shipped from out of state), to shoes, flowers, hair, makeup, jewelry….everything!IMG_8439  I was excited to be able to offer my photography services to capture some photos of her on her special day.  IMG_8423We met down at the Naperville Riverwalk on a gorgeous day.IMG_8565  I saw the results of so many wonderful Moms at work that day as I shot photos of Kenzie before her prom.  I admit, as a Mom myself, I teared up a bit.IMG_8566IMG_8569I am happy to report that she had a great time at the dance and I hope that our community created lifelong memories for her!IMG_8561I even thought what a fun tradition it would be to do something like this for a special girl every year.  IMG_8456Thank you to all of the generous Moms who came together to make her dream come true.  I am so lucky to be part of such an amazing community of women!

XO

Mia.

IMG_7938-1This girl…IMG_8051She is so beautiful!IMG_8176IMG_8209IMG_7894And, although most new Moms of girls are only interested in pink, her Mom was open to letting me have fun with bold colors!IMG_8225IMG_8263IMG_8240I had never done red before, and I think she might have been a bit skeptical at first, but they turned out so fabulous.IMG_8156IMG_7925IMG_8112I was thrilled to see that she wrote “100% love” about Black & White photos.  I am in total agreement…especially when it comes to newborns.  The wrinkles…the shadows…ah!IMG_7982IMG_7972IMG_7953-2Add one big, strong Daddy and it elevates newborn photos to a whole new level.  Every girl needs her Daddy!IMG_8025IMG_8005And finally….IMG_8137 copyI love, love, love this photo…and this quote.  She looks like a super snuggly hippie girl.

And there is no doubt in my mind, after spending some time with this sweet family, that this girl will be so loved.

Thank you for trusting me to capture these special moments.

XO

Kenzie.

Today this beautiful girl is making her First Communion.  I was thrilled to be asked to capture some photos of her last weekend to commemorate this time in her life.  Her session was so much fun!IMG_6567I have known Kenzie since she was an itty bitty.  Her brother and my son have the same condition so we share a lot of similar life challenges between our families.IMG_6516IMG_6515IMG_6682We started out our session at her church.  They had beautiful stained glass windows and gorgeous flowers.  We took advantage of it all.IMG_6482IMG_6470I captured all of the traditional style photos and then we were off to the Riverwalk for some more fun photos with the flowers.  It was so cold….this poor girlie was shivering like crazy but you would never know it.  She looks so much like a princess in these photos. IMG_6716IMG_6751One of my favorite places on the Riverwalk is the covered bridge.  I took these photos there and edited them using a more artsy finish.  I love them so much!IMG_6817IMG_6822IMG_6823IMG_6836I love to capture shots when my subject is just doing their own thing…not posing.  I love the look of this photo as she was looking off at the water.  It’s so peaceful and pensive.  IMG_6693Congratulations Kenzie on your special day!

My spring weekend sessions are completely full.  If you would like to be on my cancellation list, please let me know.  Summer calendar coming soon…

XO

First Communion Fun x 2!

I have been dying to share this session with you! Of course, I had to wait until I actually delivered it to my client first but that is done and here it is…IMG_6945When I initially spoke with this Mom about a First Communion session I was excited to find that it was not for just one child but for TWINS!  Twins are definitely double the fun and these two did not disappoint.IMG_6953IMG_6957As with all kids it took them a minute to warm up to me.  While that was happening I snapped up all of the serious church shots (you know…for the grandparents and stuff). Things like…. IMG_6991IMG_6994IMG_7014IMG_7020IMG_7004IMG_7100IMG_7118These two were just all kinds of cute!  I could already see the fun we were going to have.IMG_7075Once I got them warmed up though….it was on!  I love this shot…IMG_7128IMG_7178IMG_7232IMG_7243IMG_7257We took a stroll around the church to capture a few outside shots and hit up the playground.  And then they found the hopscotch…IMG_7286IMG_7291These two had such fun personalities.  They were interesting and funny and unconventional.  Our next stop was one of my favorite places for photos…IMG_7321IMG_7341IMG_7352IMG_7360They were ready & willing to try any of the crazy things I asked them to. Super twins!IMG_7630 My favorite kind of kids!  Of course I had no idea this would happen when they saw the swings…IMG_7504Or this…IMG_7529IMG_7590IMG_7600IMG_7619I just snapped away while they had a blast!IMG_7614IMG_7456IMG_7444I am especially grateful to their Mom (Hi Kim!) who graciously let them play for my camera even though it meant a trip to the cleaners before the actual first communion could happen the following week.IMG_7676I love every single photo from this session.

More First Communion photos coming soon…..

XO

Easter…with chickens!

I love Easter.  The baskets, the egg hunt, all that yummy chocolate….  So when a mom on one of my Facebook groups posted a request for a photographer who could come snap a few photos of her family on Easter hunting eggs with real CHICKENS…..I was totally in!!IMG_5960Fortunately, she lives 5 minutes away and, since my family doesn’t really do much on Easter normally, I figured I could sneak away for an hour, shoot some photos, and be back before anyone in a sugar coma noticed that I was gone.  IMG_6103Well, of course, it didn’t work out quite that way.  We normally never host Easter so it’s just us having a nice meal.  This year we ended up with a house full of people sort of at the last minute.  I guess being compulsively organized comes in handy in these situations.  I started all of the food, got everything ready, snuck out to my photo session, and still had dinner on the table for everyone to enjoy.IMG_5961In the meantime…I really enjoyed meeting this sweet extended family.  It was a beautiful, sunny day and the chickens (and kids) were so cute.IMG_5975IMG_5980IMG_5968I even captured the moment when the chicken flew off of her shoulder!IMG_6009This girl was obsessed with the chickens.  It was so cute.  She even tried to give them the plastic eggs from the hunt.  Talk about confused chickens!IMG_5962IMG_5965IMG_6038The chickens didn’t seem to mind all of the attention.IMG_6013IMG_5983IMG_5970IMG_5992IMG_5991After the chicken fun…there were eggs to find all over the yard.  I captured some egg hunt photos, got some group family shots, and was back at home with lamb on the grill in no time.IMG_6112In addition to the action shots I threw in some cool black and whites of each of the kids.  The sun made it difficult to capture the best photos but I was happy that these turned out so nice.IMG_6309-2IMG_6042IMG_6041IMG_6072IMG_6087-2IMG_6198IMG_6355-2I consider this Easter with a bonus!!

I’m slowly catching up on my blog posts….next up….first communion fun!!

XO

Katy

I love maternity sessions!  I know I probably say it all the time but it’s true.  It’s such a beautiful time of hope, beauty, excitement and anxiety.  All of those emotions combine to create the most beautiful photos.IMG_5338Meet Katy.IMG_5323IMG_5304IMG_5348Katy was a winner in my 2017 Wheaton Moms Give A Way.  When we met for the first time I was surprised to find that we had a connection…her step daughter and my son were friends at school.  Small world!IMG_5214IMG_5255IMG_5280I was excited to meet her and her beautiful family for our photo session on what turned out to be a very warm and sunny but also windy day.  I was also excited to meet this little sweetie.IMG_5259We started out with a few photos of the whole family and then let the girls take off so that we could focus on the couple and their ‘bump’.IMG_5339We started our session in one of my favorite spots.  It never disappoints.  Gorgeous trees and green space combined with some nice buildings and a pond.  Then we moved on to my urban location.IMG_5488IMG_5517I love the vintage brick and architectural details and try to include those in the photos whenever possible.IMG_5476IMG_5556IMG_5563IMG_5609She had such a sophisticated vibe….like working with a professional model!IMG_5580IMG_5859IMG_5880A few of my favorite spots….the cool blue doors, a sweet alley (yes…I make people dance in the alley!), and to commemorate the area a little shot of the Wheaton Theater.IMG_5758IMG_5802She wanted to include a few items to honor her husband’s military career.  I love it when people incorporate special items into our sessions.IMG_5933Three locations, tons of great photos, one special couple.

I can’t wait to meet the new addition!

XO

Grayson is 2!

It is always an honor to be entrusted with taking special photos for someone that you have known for a long time.  We met Ashley when she was only 4 years old and we first moved into our current home.  Her Grandmother lives next door to us.  She was an important part of my children’s growing up and we have fond memories of many summers spent together.  She was a huge help to me with my children and now it’s hard to believe that she has two children of her very own.IMG_4690Meet Grayson.  Isn’t he so cute!!IMG_4707Grayson just turned 2.  We spent a little time capturing some sweet photos of him to commemorate this special birthday.IMG_4695IMG_4750As with most 2 year olds, he was not thrilled about our ideas.  There was no posing going on so we had to capture our photos on the run…IMG_4820He was interested in playing with the balloons and then with the cars.IMG_4916IMG_4920That gave us some time to snap away.

IMG_4893And, of course, he loved my puppies!IMG_5053When our studio time was over, we went outside to play and that’s when the real smiles came out.  Even though the background wasn’t so wonderful, I kept snapping to capture some of those happy times.IMG_5086IMG_5092That face!!  I could not get enough…IMG_5094IMG_5140IMG_5193IMG_5199This boy loves his Mama.  And, we do too!  Thank you for letting me be a part of this special photo session.

Happy 2nd Birthday Grayson!

XO

Cousins!

When I was a young child, my very favorite thing to do was to visit with my cousins!  Cousins were fun friends to hang out with, have sleepovers with, and generally get into mischief with.  They were truly my first best friends.  So when this Mom contacted me about doing a little impromptu session with her children and their visiting cousins….I was all in!IMG_3725We met up at a local park on what had to be the sunniest day ever.  There wasn’t much shade so I did the best I could to capture great shots wherever we could.  First I met this guy who was quick to tell me that he wasn’t planning to pose for any photos…IMG_3994IMG_4059Let’s just say that that was not a problem for me.  I love this one…it almost looks like I photoshopped him in but he just photobombed the girls…IMG_3729Let’s talk about the girls….so much cuteness!  They were shy but so sweet and I loved seeing all of their love for each other.IMG_3742IMG_3767IMG_3777I tried to capture individual photos of each child…just in case the large group shot didn’t happen.  You just never know with 5 kids under 6 years old.IMG_3799IMG_3915IMG_3804IMG_3809We had lots of action shots…IMG_3942IMG_4015IMG_4016IMG_3870And, once they warmed up a little bit to me and my camera, we attempted some posed shots of them all.  I think we did pretty well…..all things considered….IMG_3858IMG_3909 copyIMG_4098 copyI couldn’t resist a few cute cousins quotes of course.  Perfect for framing!  IMG_4124When I saw the stylin’ shoes that the girls were wearing I knew that they needed a photo all on their own.  I love this photo!!  Sparkly shoes are the best!

I had so much fun with this gang!  I hope we get to do it again soon…

XO

A fun family photo session!

A few weekends ago my niece asked me if I could snap a few photos of her family.  I was honored to capture these memories for them!  There is something special about taking photos of someone you have known for over 27 years.  In fact…she caught the bouquet at my wedding when she was only 12.   I dug out this oldie….there she is with me!Scan 1Now she is all grown up and she has the most gorgeous children..seriously..they are beautiful.  We started out at one of my favorite places because it has shade (for those super sunny days) and nice green space for winter/spring sessions.IMG_2346We tried to do some whole family poses…little Zoe wasn’t exactly on board for these!IMG_2451Then we visited the popular double swing.  IMG_2423Her boys are both so cute but that little guy….oh my…he is a riot!  I knew that he and I were going to have so much fun together and boy was I right…IMG_2492IMG_2491IMG_2489IMG_2487Those eyes….look out little ladies…here he comes!  IMG_2461IMG_2462Once we finished up outside, we headed back to the studio to take some candid shots. When I saw this I knew I had to get it for these guys.  They are all rock stars (literally) and it was just so cool.IMG_2616IMG_2549IMG_2581Of course my buddy had to be his funny self here too!  IMG_2586IMG_2585IMG_2598I also got to capture a few photos of my other cutie great niece…IMG_2540And then…it was on to Zoe’s milestone photo session.  She is such a doll baby! IMG_2533After a little nap with Mom, she was ready to be a star…IMG_2648IMG_2665IMG_2690IMG_2641IMG_2700And we even captured the photo I have been hoping for….relaxing in the pool!IMG_4662I am working hard to blog about more of my sessions!  I love sharing the fun that is going on in my new studio!

My spring calendar is almost full!  If you would like to book a summer session, let me know soon….

XO