A Day in the Park with Lila and June

A few of weekends ago, we had a couple in town with their two daughters, Lila and June.   Aside from the fact that "Lila and June" would be the best name for a Nashville country duo (don't worry, Daddy is helping push them in the musical direction), they also just happen to be two of the sweetest little girls I know.  Sunday afternoon before they went back to Nashville we were able to spend a couple of hours at a nearby park and walk the trails of the old Decatur Water Works.  Though it was a cloudy day, I think we were able to still get a few casual fun shots of the girls.  Apparently while on the way to Atlanta on Friday, June said to Mommy and Daddy, "I don't wanna go to Georgia!"  By the end of Sunday in the park she said "I want to STAY in Georgia!"  :)

Braxton is TWO and Brady is three months!

There are few families that have documented the growth of their children as well at the Romeyns.  I'm always happy to get that quarterly text message from Lexi that she needs new photos of her little ones.  Braxton turned two years old in October and Brady just hit her three month milestone.  We had a great time a couple of weeks ago enjoying/destroying all of Krister's piles of raked leaves.  All in the name of good photos, right?

Keri tells me only at this age is it a compliment to call Brady a cute little chunker.  I'll keep that in mind.  :)


Double-Header + 2 Portrait Session Weekend Teaser!

My friends generally know that I often have busy weekends.  However, this weekend was my first wedding double-header in a while- one Friday and one Saturday.  On top of that I had a maternity/family session on Sunday and a 3-month baby session on Monday.  Needless to say I was a bit nervous about it all week.  My main fear, oddly enough, was that I throw my back out at the Friday wedding and was unable to shoot the Saturday wedding.  That obviously didn't happen, but I did find out for sure that I have begun getting tennis elbow from lifting about 15 pounds of camera, batteries, battery grip, flash, and wireless flash trigger over 1,000 times each day with poor form by my right arm.  Both nights I actually had to ice my elbow!  I'm getting old!

Both weddings went great.  If you were outside at all this weekend you know the weather was some of the best Atlanta has to offer.  Blue skies, warm days, cool evenings- just about everything you could ask for in a wedding- both of which were outdoors!  I'll give more dedicated posts on both weddings once I get through editing the photos, but I will say I had a ton of fun all weekend.  Rachel and Andy had such a fun group of guests and bridal party at Park Tavern that I ended up spending most of my time on the dance floor!


Here are a few photos from Rachel and Andy's wedding:



Lindsey and Mario had a beautiful wedding at Donaldson Bannister Farm in Dunwoody- actually the very first one that the venue has seen!  I initially thought they "just" planned the wedding (note: the word "just" is in quotations), but after the ceremony Mario told me the ceremony site- a beautiful grassy garden area on the property- was a swimming pool just about a month ago!  He laid all of the sod and did the landscaping himself!  Here are a few from their wedding:



Now here are a couple from the Sullivan family shoot followed by two from my sister's 3-month old- Hudson.  I know I know- I'm an incredibly efficient blogger!  I say that jokingly- more on these 4 events to come!


The Growing Romeyn Family

For the avid blog readers of mine, you know the Romeyns.  We have been able to follow Braxton from birth to now and all of the progress along the way.  He is one of Keri's favorite children to babysit and now Krister and Lexi are proud to announce the arrival of their second child, Brady.  Keri and I spend some time over there a couple of weeks to meet the sweet Brady and play around with Braxton.  I was very excited to be asked to capture the latest addition to the family as well as Braxton's latest adventures.  Speaking of his latest- I'll begin with my favorite photo of the day.  He has apparently taken an interest in the potty.  No actual "productivity" yet, just sitting... and reading.

And now on to the latest cuteness.

Another of Braxton's favorite things is pushing around the wagon.  We took a risk here.  I just wish I had a video of everyone chasing him around.  The good thing is that is seemed to lull Brady to sleep.

Kate & Hudson

I'm back from Guatemala and catching up on the blog!  I hope all of my avid readers (Mom) have had a great couple of weeks!  Last week my brother's family was in town and though only for a day, I was able to see them right after my trip.  It was great to spend time with my newly walking niece, Kate- even if just for a little while.  Keri and I head up to Maine at the end of the month for some more quality time with the northern Arnett family.  Though most of the pics in this post feature Kate, I wanted to start off with the newest addition to the family- Hudson Bassett!  He's only a few weeks old at the moment, but growing fast!  Last Monday I went to Hudson's house and snapped this photo.  My sister put together this amazing letter wall in his bedroom and I just HAD to showcase her creativity and talent.  She would also want me to tell you she freehand painted the UGA "G" as well as many of the other letters. :)

This is what Kate does when you ask her to love on Hudson.

The Romeyn Family

This may be the first time I was reprimanded by someone for not doing a blog post.  Last weekend I was hanging out with the Romeyn family at BBQ that Keri and I hosted.  Lexi Romeyn turned to me and said to me "ya know, I was kind of offended that we never got a blog post for our last portrait shoot."  I apparently forgot to put these photos up!  Sorry about that Lexi!  Now that Lexi is just a few months away from delivering their second child, so she has bigger fish to fry than me.  Nevertheless, here is the Romeyn family from April in Norcross!


...and now for my favorite.  Braxton in a "wife beater" shirt.



Baby Karla

In California this week for a wedding and Keri and I are spending a few days with my cousin, her hubby, and their 18 month-old daughter, Karla.  Karla is one of the most chill kids I think I've ever hung out with.  She's so sweet and happy all the time and is such a pleasure to be around- even though it took her a while to warm up to me (most kids do).  Here are a few shots we got in the backyard in San Mateo playing with bubbles.  When I say playing with bubbles, I mean that Karla asked to play with them, but as soon as we started blowing them, she had almost no interest and instead found joy in climbing into and off of adirondack chairs repeatedly.  :)


Isabella Smilin'

Over the years I've taken numerous family photos all over Georgia.  Big families, small families, families with dogs, cats, alpacas...  well not alpacas, but that would be pretty cool.  But out of all the families I've come across, I've never met a child happier than Isabella.  I'm not kidding.  If she wasn't smiling, she was laughing- but really she was just laughing most of the time.  Maybe I had something hanging out of my nose to set her off.  :)  Isabella, I'm told, is also fluent in Mandarin, reading at years above her level, and already is learning to play a musical instrument.  Needless to say, her mother is quite proud.  






And now the follow me routine.  :)

This baby is not crying, she's singing Journey's Greatest Hits.

"Just a small town girl... livin' in a lonely world," she started off.  From those few epic lyrics, I knew Kate Tucker was destined to be rock's one great hope.   She will [eventually] be what the world of rock music needs to save itself from the pop divas (yes Adam Levine, I'm talking about you) currently ruling the airwaves.  With rock radio stations dying at an alarming rate and rock record sales in sharp decline, Kate Tucker will save it all.  Though she barely has enough hair to tease and hairspray, she has some very healthy vocal cords and a desire to ROCK (note below, her hands are both making the Sign of the Horns).  It's just too bad she's still roughly 17.9 years away from being able to go on tour without her parents... just don't stop believin'.


... and now for the rest of Kate Tucker's Christmas/newborn family photos.  :)






The Mitchells in John's Creek

I had a chance to hang with the Mitchell family in John's Creek last month.  Megan, Madison, and Sean are three of the brightest, fun kids I know.  Megan just got her driver's license and it already taking a number of AP classes.  Madison also dominates her classes while flying through the air as a competition cheerleader.  Sean is not only a rock star on drums, but you may also remember his skills from my football post last year.  We had such a fun time and I've gotta tell ya, trying to time 3 kids bouncing on a trampoline was the most difficult part of the day.  And with that said, when the toughest part of your day is bouncing on a trampoline, there's really not much to complain about.  :)


Adding a trampoline to any photo session is always a good time.

Sean had an issue with his timing.

The Giles Family at McDaniel Farm

The Giles family is one of my favorite repeat customers for yearly family portraits.  With a new edition earlier this year (Emily), Kathy wanted to make sure to get some good holiday card photos.  We headed out to McDaniel Farm Park in Gwinnett to snap some with the falling leaves.  We had a fun time, but I will say it was a bit colder than expected.  So cold, that the girls were very unhappy to be wearing such cute outfits.  Kathy always dresses her girls so well, but we all learned that if you want smiling faces, you need kids that don't feel like icicles, no matter how cute!

Stephen was so excited to see this out behind the original farm house.   I think the humor was lost on the girls.  :)


More from the Pumpkin Patch Snot Sessions

After wiping the boogers from my 50mm lens, I was able to get more photos of Braxton from the pumpkin patch in Norcross.  He's such a fun baby to be around.  Always smiling, drooling, and laughing- except when he is distracted by a pretty girl.  No joke- Mommy and Daddy says he can pick the prettiest girl in the room out and just stare at her.  Hopefully his flirting style evolves over time because I can assure you the staring tactic can get you into more trouble than it's worth.  :)  




I was dead serious.  He's starting at a pretty girl right here.



When your photo shoot starts out like this, switch to bribery.

When there's a toddler that just isn't excited about family photos (most aren't), the best thing to do as a photographer is be patient and keep shooting.  Bribes work okay, but when McDonald's isn't enough and you're promising them a sportscar on their 16th birthday, you know it'll be the one promise they remember from their childhood.  ;)

With this shoot from last week at Agnes Scott College, the first photo sums up the first 30 minutes of shooting.  However, once I gave some time and helped Mommy and Daddy figure out what Natalie wanted to do, then the rest was cake.  I kept a smile on my face and kept shooting.  Eventually we let Natalie do her thing and we coaxed some smiles out of her along the way.  This isn't news to parents out there, but sometime you've just gotta let the kids run the show.



If she wants to play in the grass, let her play in the grass.





If she refuses to get on the swing, ask her if she wants to push Daddy on the swing.




If she won't sit next to you, ask if she wants to climb on you!



Though, of course if there's a photo you really want... have Mommy count to three "or else!"  That often works too.  :)

Four Families in Four Hours: The Madden Family

Still slowly catching up.  With my wedding in 3 weeks, it's been tough to find time to blog.   Here is the Madden Family from our shoot back in July at the Roswell Mill.  It's always fun talking with new parents to see how it's going because you can often get very different experiences...  The Maddens are lucky in that they have been blessed with a very happy baby and have been loving every minute of parenthood.


Four Families in Four Hours: The Sullivans

Family number two of our Super Sunday Photo Block (sounds like a radio show, right?) was the Sullivans.  We've seen them on the APG blog before but the occasion today was Elena's two-year photos.  She is such a cutie and was definitely taught the word "cheeeeeese" as can be seen in this first photo.  She was saying it even before I started snapping photos, so you could tell Mommy and Daddy prepped her well.



Throwing stones with Mommy.






Four Families in Four Hours- Addie and Krista Bleisath

Family photos are a fun reason to get outside and take pictures.  When the weather's nice, you can't beat fun family time at a beautiful location.   This is why I decided to schedule four families in a day at the Roswell Mill Park in Roswell, GA.  It worked out great for everyone.  The families ended up with pretty photos and a fun afternoon while I was happy to save a little gas money on an all-in-one photo day. First up is Addie (and Krista) Bleisath.  I put Krista in parenthesis because this was supposed to be something of a model shoot for the gorgeous young Addie.  Apparently Addie has no problem hamming it up and striking a pose at home with Mommy and Daddy, but becomes very shy when around outsiders.  Needless to say, the shoot ended up with lots of Mommy photos as well.  We eventually coaxed a few smiles out of her and ended up with some great photos.  She definitely has a future career as a model as long as she can get rid of the pre-shoot jitters.   :)