Heather came from Lakewood for her Maternity session. I love that I get to meet clients from all over Western Washington who come to see me for maternity and newborn photography. One of the the time periods I would visit in a heart beat if I had a time machine would be the Renaissance. I grew up in Italy witnessing the transformation in the arts that stemmed from those amazing years. I don’t think it is a mistake that at the same time that the arts were advancing medicine was also experiencing a boom. As men studied the human body and began to accomplish miracles in the medical field, artists were becoming more talented with truly representing the human form. It is astounding that art went from a boom in the 1300 with artist like Giotto (who revolutionized art himself as he began to really paint well the human form) to the works of the master Michelangelo. All of these great men were fascinated with the form of womanhood. I fall more and more in love with the art of maternity portraiture. There is so much to love artistically about the form of a pregnant woman. The play of light and shadow as they move across beautiful curves. I want to study more about art!
I love when clients book me for maternity photography sessions in addition to their newborn sessions. The story of a baby starts with a belly after all. Haley and Nathan came to see me from Renton, Washington. They were a pleasure to work with and I am so excited to share the images from their session with them.
Often times the intimate way in which I edit and the musical selection I have playing while editing combing to create a cathartic experience that overwhelms me emotionally. I can’t help but work who I am into how I am feeling about a woman, baby or child as I edit. For example. When I edit a woman’s maternity session I think about my days of pregnancy, how I felt, what I thought about etc….
As I was editing beautiful Haley’s maternity session I had one of those experiences. I was listening to the Pandora station to my Les Miserable channel. I was in the mood for Broadway tunes and grandeur! Phil Collins’ song, “You’ll Be In My Heart” came on. I haven’t heard this song in forever. It was on the Tarzan soundtrack. I remember watching the Tarzan credits in the theater and bawling my eyes out. The year before I had my first baby. It was overwhelming. Adjusting from full time school and work to being at home full time was very hard for me. My son had sever pain from an inguinal hernia that didn’t get diagnosed for months. He was a terrible nurser. I felt like I didn’t have any friends, we were young and money was a real struggle. He was my only child that I struggled with postpartum depression with. My future seemed so unsure, but I had a little person now. He was my strength and I was his. The song from the movie pulled HARD at my heart strings! It was written by a woman I swear it. The lyrics seemed to have been plucked right from my soul. I loved my new little son so much, fears of the future washed away as I thought about being strong for him. If you haven’t heard it, be sure to clink the link and grad a tissue:
While the song played and my daughter (who had just been bitten by the cat) sat on my lap I lost myself in those maternal feelings. Then my thoughts turned to Haley. All of those thoughts will soon be hers. Those feelings of wanting to protect, the desire to hold tight, wanting to keep a little one safe and warm, feeling a bond growing strong, witnessing your heart beswallowed up in love for another tinier heart, feelings of forever, wanting so much – everything for your child and the commitment to always be there. Those feelings and thoughts might be stirring within you now Haley, but the minute you hold your new baby in your arms they will wash over you like a warm tidal wave. They will reshape you.
Charlotte came to visit me from Seattle for her cake smash portraits. She even came with her personal assistant, her big sister, who was a wonderful helper! She was not shy at all and wanted to explore everything. Little minds in toddlers must work at the speed of light. She went from one thing to the next, exploring and learning. I always wonder what these super busy toddlers are going to grow up to be. Something that will compliment the unstoppable force that is their mind!
Quinn, Charlotte’s big sister was very interested in getting a piece of cake. She was a little distraught that her sister was smushing it all. After all it was a lovely looking cake. I cut her a slice to enjoy while we gave Charlotte a quick bath. She didn’t want to leave until she had eaten the very last bite. So cute.
When families come to me for newborn photography I want Mom and Dad to get in the picture. Often times it is these first family portraits that are my favorite. Your sweet baby lying perfectly posed on a beautiful blanket is wonderful, but these images are the ones that capture the miracle. Portraits like this one are the first record of you being a family. Baby is always in the center. She is the knot that brings two strong cords together. Mom and Dad both supporting her for the rest of her life. Often times mom and dad have to rely on each other for balance in images like these. It is so beautifully poetic. In this image in particular Dad’s smile reveals his happiness and excitement that he is holding in his hands a perfect princess. There is something more in moms smile, she is caught up in thoughts and feelings. I have often found that there is more for moms to ponder when thinking of their daughter. It will be her responsibility to teach and train. I think as a woman and a mother that we definitely feel more pressure and set for ourselves a high standard when raising our girls. The most significant thing about having a beautiful family portrait is that it symbolizes a willingness to get close, to be together and become unified. I am so excited for the wonderful future in store for this wonderful family.
One of things I like to ask parents about when they are preparing to come in for baby portraits or a cake smash photography session is whether or not their little one has any habits of getting into trouble. Oddly enough it is those tendencies towards naughtiness that so frequently endear us to our little people. They are definitely things that we remember since it is likely that working with those naughty habits occupy a big part of our time. For my littlest it was dumping EVERYTHING out of her drawers. For many it is toilet paper. For Ben, who came to see me from Issaquah, WA….it is getting into the dog’s food. Everyone with pets can sympathize!
Fortunately Ben’s parents have expertly trained their dog or this series of shots would have never been possible. I am SO IN LOVE WITH THEM!!! It was hard to pick a favorite. I chose this one because the poor dog (forgot his name) is looking out at me like, “Oh man…do you see what is happening here?” And Ben has that perfect “I’m in trouble aren’t I?” expression. It is classic, like a modern day Norman Rockwell. This was definitely stepping outside my comfort zone. Working with pets is very difficult. I am so glad we made it happen because I know these will be favorite, cherished images.
I am all about trying to personalize sessions to fit the little people in front of my lens. When scheduling your session with Jennifer Wilcox Photography, please think about what things you really want to remember. What is significant. What memories can we freeze in time. Let’s make the most of your baby’s portrait session!