I sure hope and pray that you have been doing great! I am still amazed that my middle daughter is turning fifteen today!
You may be wondering why I'm blogging about my own child. Well, as a photographer, I know the importance of capturing memories for families and couples. As a mother, preserving my own memories is so important to me. To my children. Let me also share that I haven't always been a professional photographer, so I know all about the disposable cameras, the horrible photos amongst the few good ones. Having struggled with perfectionism for as long as I can remember, I always knew that a photo should look good. Never mind the fact that I had zero skills in focus or curating a great scene or pose. So if you can identify with me, hi five to you! Let me also tell you that because of my thinking, I went many times without taking milestone pictures because my apartment wasn't nicely furnished (note to my former self *take the kids to the park and snap some great shots*) or because my boys were so rambunctious they always had a bruise somewhere on their face (note to past me *turn them around and take a pic or just embrace the story*).
Having said all that, I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and sharing where I began as a mother, always loving photos because my mom traveled with a Polaroid everywhere, and regretting the fact that I don't have enough pictures of the moments that mattered. The milestones that mattered. I should have gotten more of those disposable cameras developed but sometimes was too broke to make that a priority. After taking online classes through Creative Live to hone my photography skills, I knew being able to serve families and brides would be my platform of choice. From the very beginning of becoming a photographer, I also knew the importance of seeing a portrait session through from scouting out the perfect area, to having the right equipment, to curating the session by planning ahead for attire, theme, and purpose, to making those portraits look like art. I wanted those I served to smile every time they saw their family portrait hanging on the wall, to laugh or cry when they sat down to reminisce with an album. This is why I'm so passionate about preserving my own heirloom - because all of us have a legacy. Each one of us as human beings has a family tree that must be kept alive, even after our ancestors are long gone.
Now that you know my why I can share a piece of my own family legacy by celebrating my daughter's fifteenth birthday. First, I knew I wanted to write her a special letter. Over the years, I've written letters to my children and hope that when they get older, those words will have gained more meaning and substance. Even when my twin sons went to Marine boot camp, we wrote back and forth so much, I have a box for each of them of the letters we sent one another. If you've never considered writing a letter to your children, it's a beautiful way to convey your emotions and hopes and makes a great keepsake.
This lovely little lady of mine has been such a joy to raise. Oh, we've had our ups and downs, but the good out weighs the bad for sure. She sings a higher soprano than I do (she gets it from my mom) and one of her favorites is "Phantom of the Opera". Amani loves to read, draw, craft, laugh and she's always willing to share.
She and I both agreed that the historic Hamilton Lane Library would be a perfect backdrop for her school portraits. I wanted to capture her bubbly personality along with her love for classic and vintage things.
When we spotted this tufted chair, both of us swooned. There's also a fireplace in this gorgeous room and beautiful wood wainscoting. Simply stunning. With a love for classic portraits myself, I decided to antique a few of the poses, so that years from now, we can focus on the emotions of the pictures without getting lost in the details.
Whatever season you're in now, don't take your life for granted. Even the small humble beginnings are part of our making. I'm learning to embrace the valley experiences as well as the mountain top ones!
My love for scrapbooking and graphic design inspired me to create this one of a kind montage:
I can't wait to make this a framed or canvas art piece for my home!
Oh, by the way, here's one more surprise about Amani...
She took this picture while we were outside the library. Isn't it just beautiful? I think my protege is following in my footsteps!
Until next time, have a lovely rest of the week and stay blessed.
From my heart to yours,