Family, Maternity, and Newborn Sessions
Oh hey! If you’re reading this because you think you might like me to take your picture let me first say: I’m so thrilled you’re interested and I’m so happy to talk more over coffee or a smoothie soon (just shoot me a text and we’ll work out the details). I love motherhood and all of its messy, beautiful, raw, intense corners. Furthermore, I really believe that having a few photos that make you feel really beautiful in the midst of the madness might just be able to prop you up through a really tough season. Picture yourself: on the floor with an overtired, cranky, probably potty training kid having one crisis or another…and then looking up and seeing an image that brings you pure joy. Reminds you of the light in all of this. So you take a breath. Just for a moment your shoulders drop and you pull that stinky mess of a kid in for a big deep hug.
A bit much? Maybe. But I’m guessing, hoping, wishing, that you’re out there. That I’ll write this and some really lovely kind wonderful people who need just what I have to give are going to call me. Maybe I sound like a kook and you’d really rather just meet up on the beach and do something more familiar – I’ll hook you up with some really nice people who can give you just those pictures. But maybe – juuust maybe – you are looking for just a little bit more, don’t mind a little messy, prefer the real stuff. Then maybe I’m for you.
What’s in your Bag?
I have several 35mm SLRs but the one you are most likely to see is my Canon EOS 1v. That’s pretty much always got a 50 or 35mm prime lens on it but if I’m feeling fancy it might be the 24-70. I also shoot a medium format Mamiya 645AF – you’ll know when this comes out because it’s gigantic. That’s got an 85mm Mamiya lens on it and it will take the most gorgeous, creamy, lush photos ever and you will think maybe you should be a supermodel after all.
When I’m shooting digital I use a Canon 5d Mkiii and generally if I’m shooting birth a 24-70mm 2.8L or 50mm 1.4 lens. I have the ol’ trusty Mark ii if something goes horribly wrong and I need a backup. Also a flashy flash if absolutely necessary (and aaaaallllways bounced away from faces).
Other possibilities are: Canon AE-1 program, toy Diana, Fuji underwater disposable, Canon Elan 7, Canon Rebel (film), Pentax spy camera (again, can’t make this stuff up). We’ll have fun – promise.
(If you want the short answer just skip to the last paragraph where I finally get to the point…)
Film and I go way, way back. When I was in middle school I was crawling around in our attic for one reason or another and discovered my Dad’s long neglected old enlarger. For those of you unfamiliar, an enlarger is an unwieldy but extremely simple piece of equipment designed to shine a light through a photographic negative (remember those?) and project (ahem, enlarge) it onto a piece of photographic paper. Little middle school me decided to dust that bad boy off, put some black felt in the window, hang a red bulb from the shower curtain, and make a happy little darkroom in my bathroom.
When I first went professional with my photography, in Seattle in 2007, I did what any self-respecting aspiring professional would do: bought a top of the line Canon dSLR and went digital. My digital process looked a lot like most photographers I know: shoot, look at the back of the camera, tweak, look again, tweak again, etc. Then get home, upload photos, and spend hours upon hours critiquing, editing, and second guessing my work. This just didn’t work for me, I got burnt out. The “compare and despair” got to me.
After taking a long hiatus to do a couple other things (move across the country, go to grad school, have kids) I knew I couldn’t be happy doing anything other than photography for a living, and I knew I had to go all the way back to my roots and shoot film. With film my process looks a lot more like this: arrive on the scene, look at the people I’m photographing, enjoy them, watch the light, compose pictures and worry about my settings, take pictures at the *very best* moments, put my camera away at the end of the shoot and wait for magic from the lab in a couple weeks.
So basically, film lets me be in the moment. I have to do my absolute best right then and there to make the best possible photograph and capture you in the very best light (literally!) – and then? I let it go. Having done both, I believe that shooting film (most of the time) just makes me a better photographer. And we all want our photographer at their best, right? There are also a lot of technical reasons why I think that (in the right conditions) the quality of film is still unparalleled by digital.
*a special note on births: I do shoot digital at births, for several reasons, but essentially the same reason as I shoot film for family sessions: I believe it is the best medium for the job. Simple and complex as that. Please ask any further questions you might have.
How Do I Get My Pictures?
The next business day after our session I mail the film off to a lab that processes it and makes high resolution scans of the negatives. I get your scans back generally in about a week, make any small tweaks, and compile the best of the best into your personal online gallery. You will be able to view, save, print, and share your images just like you would any other digital photos.
If you are interested in true analog, archival prints please let me know. I love nothing more than to get my hands dirty in the darkroom and the quality of a real black and white film print will blow your mind 😉
Have another question? Get in touch!