kalamazoo michigan family photographer | austin family in-home storytelling session

The Austin fam and I go back a little ways... their first session took place in golden autumn fields & I remember thinking after their session how great it felt to photograph a family that just enjoyed eachother & (for lack of a better term) ignored me & my camera. ;) I was starting to get the itch to move toward documentary photography. 

Their next session took place when the gorgeous baby girl shown below was born. I visited their hospital room for a Fresh48 (a documentary/lifestyle session that takes place within 48 hours of birth). I loved every second of that shoot. Despite tricky, low lighting, and an energetic toddler, I walked away from that session with pure joy in my heart. Capturing a family and the bliss they're feeling after the birth of a new child... there's just nothing like it. 

Fast forward to a couple months ago when I received a sweet email asking if I'd be interested in documenting their typical evening routine, and my heart started beating a bit faster... ;) 

I met the Austin family at their house just before dinner on a normal Tuesday night. They were all relaxed, playing in the yard while homemade pizza cooked on the outdoor fireplace. It felt just like the night when we were in the field, except this time, we were in their most sacred, comfortable environment. I photographed their every giggle, every shared smile. I captured details, like big brother's first time using the strawberry cutting tool, or dad stirring the fire while mom prepared the rest of the meal. After dinner, the family played one of their favorite games, t-ball, and I laughed until I cried (my stomach muscles were literally sore after the next day...), and then we headed inside for some more play before bedtime routine. Bathtime, giggling while putting on pajamas, a couple of great books, some more laughs, and then hugs and lights out. It felt so familiar to me... it's what I do with my own children, and that makes me appreciate it even more.

My job is to capture the mundane, ordinary, everyday moments. You know -- the ones that change suddenly, or stop happening before you even realize things are changing, and then all you have left are memories that fade over time. Knowing that I created tangible evidence of those memories is the very best part of my job... because now you'll never forget the look on your little boy's face as daddy read him his very favorite book in his tiny toddler bed, or the way your baby girl tucked her feet up close to you as you rocked her to sleep. It's documented happiness, even in the everyday, typical moments.

If you've been considering a documentary (aka Storytelling session), can I just encourage you to take the leap and do it? It's the least scary session of them all. There are no outfits to be shopped for, because you wear whatever you would normally wear. There is no location to be chosen, because I come to you, and let me tell you... the size of your house, the amount of light, and whether or not your house is *exactly* as you want it to look does.not.matter. Every person feels this way about their house, whether they live in a fixer upper or a mansion.... and my eyes? They only see the love you wear on your face as you scoop up your child up in a moment of raw emotion.  

So, contact me. I'd love to chat, no pressure. I promise you won't regret it!