Spring, Summer, and Fall you can usually find me, an hour before sunset, on a beach somewhere between Pensacola Beach or Navarre, FL and Gulf Shores or Orange Beach, AL. Family portrait sessions on the white sandy beaches of the Gulf Coast are a thing of tradition for many both local and vacationers alike. But there's something else I'd like for you to remember when you're envisioning the perfect family portrait session -
let the children play...
Towards the end of family and child, after I've taken all of the more "traditional" or posed pictures, I often ask my clients to consider allowing their kids to get a little sandy and wet. More times than not I'm met with a look of shock and hesitation.
And, I don't push it. If you're not into it, I get it. Your kids (and you) are in nice (coordinated) outfits that you've spent a lot of time and energy assembling, and here I am asking you to let them not only get super sandy but wet too!
But consider it.
Let your children walk away from this session remembering how much FUN it was! (You might find that it ends up being your favorite part of the session as well.)
These pictures are of my own kids - taken a few weeks ago.
Did I want to load them back in my car all wet and sandy?
Had I even thought to bring towels?
Also no. (mom fail)
But when they asked if they could go splash in the water, did I let them?
Heck YES! Without a moment's hesitation.
And they had a BLAST! They chased waves, and danced, and LAUGHED until long after the sun had already crossed below the horizon. And next time, I'll do it again.
At home that night, my back floorboard was full of sand, and my seats were damp. But, the floor can be vacuumed, the seats were dry by morning, and all 3 kids burst into my office before bed that night wanting to see their pictures!
This session started off unlike any other.
In the 7 years since starting this little business of mine, not once has the husband been the one to hire my services - until Matt. When Matt and his family booked their Orange Beach, AL spring break beach vacation, he asked his condo manager for a photographer referral. Happily for me, I was that referral. After 7 years of ONLY ever being booked by women, it was awesome to hear how excited Matt was, not only about their vacation, but about booking their family portrait session on our lovely gulf beaches! He had actually proposed to Stacy on our these very sands about 6 years ago and this was their first trip back as well as their first family pictures in a couple of years.
As always, I made sure to get pictures of the kids - those are the ones that will definitely end up on the living room wall! But I also think it's super important to get a picture of mom and dad by themselves. As a parent myself, non-selfie pictures of my husband and I are few and far between and I know my clients are in the same boat!
Once all of the more posed pictures are out of the way, I just let everyone explore a bit while I capture the interactions. That's my favorite way to wrap up family sessions - and usually the family's favorite part as well.
The next time you head to the northwest Florida or south Alabama Gulf Coast, don't forget to book your sunset beach portrait session!
There's something extraordinarily special about documenting a family's first journey to parenthood. This is exactly why I offer "Watch Me Grow" baby plans - to offer an affordable option for my clients to have professional portraits taken during their pregnancy, when their little one is a newborn, and on through baby's first year.
Their son, Thales, was born at 40 weeks and 1 day, and from what I hear, Ana rocked that 14 hour labor. I had the absolute pleasure of taking his newborn portraits at their home in north Pensacola when he was 6 days old.
He was, and is, an absolute doll baby and completely rocked his session!
These mamas were absolutely smitten with their new addition.
I'll leave you with what I think is the BEST thing about "Watch Me Grow" baby plans - continuity. If you look back, you'll see that the some quilt Ana is laying on in her maternity session was used as a basket stuffer for Thales' newborn session.
I was also able to take a stylized approach at duplicating Ana's favorite picture from her maternity session during their newborn session. What a difference 4 weeks makes. The picture on the right was taken exactly 28 days after the one on the left.
The beautiful lady above is my mom's oldest sister, my Nanny. She's one of my favorite people in the whole world. And that handsome young man is her oldest grandson.
i also grabbed a few pictures of another cousin and his family - he and his wife are camera lovers like myself (no pressure, right).
That's Phantom photo-bombing in the background.
It's that time of year again - Christmas Mini Portrait Session time!
This year, Finding Beauty in the Ordinary Photography will be offering Christmas Mini Sessions with limited dates, between October 29th and December 9th.
Finding Beauty in the Ordinary Photography's 2017 Christmas Mini Session Details:
20 - 30 minute - on location - session
3 digital images (your choice)
*Pricing is for families of up to 6 persons. Additional persons are $15 each.
*Advertised price is for locations within 20 miles of zip code 32506. We are more than happy to travel to any location you desire for a nominal travel fee.
Locations within 20 miles of zip code 32506 include but are not limited to: Pensacola Beach, Perdido Key, Orange Beach, AL, Cantonment, Gulf Breeze, and Pensacola.
Not looking for Christmas-styled pictures? Our Christmas Mini Session is the perfect quick session to update your family portraits! Just let me know when booking that you don't need the Christmas setup.
Could this deal get any better?
Well, what if I told you there was a way you could earn additional digital images from your session?
Refer your friends to me. Each new client who books a Christmas Mini Session (or full session) and mentions that YOU referred them to me earns YOU an additional digital image from you session! (No limit!)
Are you ready to have the perfect family photo to make all of your family and friends jealous?
Though a bit of a drive, Carpenter's Park in Milton, FL is one of my favorite family portrait session locations. It has a little of everything I need for a great Northwest Florida photo shoot - water, a cute little bridge, pier, open grassy areas, and lots of natural shade.
The Montserrat family contacted me about taking their first pictures as a family of 3 and I was happy to oblige. Since dad is currently stationed at Whiting Field and they were looking for something outdoors and nearby, Carpenter's Park near downtown Milton was the perfect choice.
As a rule, travel within 25 miles of zip code 32506 is included in the session fee for all of my photography shoots. But, I'm more than happy to travel anywhere your heart desires for a nominal travel fee.
Taking advantage of my love of travel allows us to really pick the PERFECT location for your family portrait session, maternity session, or high school senior portrait session!
School's back in session and summer is winding down here in the Pensacola area. That means it's time for an End of Summer Family Portrait Session Special!
August & September dates are available and include the following:
20 minute family portrait session in Pensacola or Perdido Key, FL
up to 6 people
4 high-resolution digital images
Only 6 sessions are available at this special price!
*A 50% retainer fee and signed contract are required to book
*additional people can be added for $10/ person
*additional high-resolution digital images can be purchased for $15/ image
email or call to book
email@example.com | 251.609.4826
With new clients, most of the time, the start of your session is our first time meeting. With adults, that's no big deal, but with children that's a whole other thing. So, one of the first things I have to do is get the children used to me. You may think I'm babbling, but by chatting with you in front of them, they're learning that you accept me and think I'm ok, so then they'll realize I'm not a threat or anything to worry about.
Often times I'll also get your children to play with me, have them search for the perfect Alabama gulf coast seashell, or get them to "help" me make sure mommy and daddy look right at me for a picture. I find that getting them involved in the family portrait photography process makes them more likely to cooperate when it's time for their beach pictures.
Did you catch that? I ALWAYS try to get at least one good picture of just mom and dad.
I think, as parents, we need those pictures with our significant other!
Over the last few years, I've had the unique pleasure of watching these two sweet girls grow! Not only are they repeat clients, our families have become good friends. K, the younger, was only 18 months old when I first met her - and last weekend I attended her 5th birthday party. Time sure does fly!
Another great thing about repeat clients is the variety of images they end up with over time. The first family portrait session they booked with me was at the West Florida Railroad Museum in Milton, FL. The next year we did fall pictures of the girls in Pace, FL. This spring we decided to mix things up and picked the Naval Live Oaks Nature Preserve in Gulf Breeze, FL for the variety it would offer us - beaches on Pensacola sound and scrubby forest.
I can't wait to see where we end up next!
The Bass family came to me looking for something a little different for their northwest Florida family portrait session. For one thing, baby number 6 had just been born and it had been a few years since they'd had family pictures taken.
Oh, did I forget to mention that all 6 kids were 8 and under?
We decided on a rustic, semi-secluded spot I know of just north of Cantonment, FL. Everything was a lush green set off perfectly by the early evening sunlight.
And seriously, these kids were great!
Besides the usual groupings - whole family, kids with mom, kids with dad, kids by themselves, there's one more picture I always try to get...
Mom and dad by themselves.
I think so often as parents we lose a bit of ourselves and who we were "before kids" once we become parents. And, not that we'd ever take it back, I feel this shot is as important as the rest!
Amanda is the prop buying, location scouting, ponytail sporting, flip flop wearing, owner/ operator/ and woman behind the camera for Finding Beauty in the Ordinary Photography.
Newborn Portrait Photography
Family Portrait Photography
Maternity Portrait Photography
Senior Portrait Photography
From Gulf Shores, AL to Navarre, FL. Covering the areas of Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Foley, and Elberta Alabama and Pensacola, Gulf Breeze, Pensacola Beach, Pace, and Cantonment Florida.