natural light photographer

Norah + Evelyn make four // Story-Telling Session // Larson Park, St. Louis, MO

This super fun, artsy, talented (and funny!) family welcomed me into their home to capture some beautiful moments with their two gorgeous girls. We started the session at Larson Park, since it was going to be a hot day here in sweaty St. Louis.. and boy did the heat come fast! It is a good thing we hit the park first. This family was so easy going through the heat and bugs, and they were cracking me up the whole time. At one point we had Evelyn in a basket, with Norah sitting next to some thorns and being SUCH a good sport about it (there may have been bribery going on here people). These two girls are such beauties, and made a great duo! And Norah was a silly thing throughout it all, which I love.

I had way too much fun being a fly on their wall in their home, which had super-dreamy-drool-worthy light. It was just perfectly perfect. Norah is so artistic and will either be a Graphic Designer like her talented Momma (she told me she wants to grow up and be a designer like her). I see some musical talent here too and she also was teaching me about the liver, via a drawing she did! She also drew a beautiful heart (graphic, not the human heart) that was really well designed with textures and layers (I am also a Graphic Designer and respect a good illustration!). Check her out busting out in song on her cardboard guitar (and practicing on her real one with her mermaid friend). Evelyn is just talented at being downright adorable, and grabbing her toes. She was VERY focused on those toes during the whole session. She has Momma and Dad wrapped around her cute, chubby fingers. Can you blame them? Momma and Evelyn had countless moments together that I wanted to orchestrate a music video too. They were just two peas in a pod, and clearly madly in love. Norah couldn't even keep her hands off baby sister! 

Norah was clearly Daddy's girl, and they really perfected the scrunch face silly-expression thing together. Clearly she got it from Dad. I was so impressed with this crazy awesome deck Dad was building, and the kitchen table he made by hand! See what I mean, the talent?? 

Don't forget the adorably perfect golden retriever.... baby + doggy= cuteness overload <3 Thanks guys, it was way too much fun!

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Haddie // Larson Park // St. Louis, MO

I really want to keep this one short and sweet. Haddie is clearly such a beautiful little girl. Her Mom is a hairstylist and has great taste in fashion. But not only are they a beautiful, stylish family, they have beautiful personalities. Haddie and her Mom were so sweet and soft spoken. Haddie took a little warming up, but soon enough was chasing her Dad around, playing peek-a-boo and climbing a rock wall! The last thing her Mom said before we started was "Oh, I just really want some photos that capture the love that we share.". My heart melted.. I wish every client asked for this, because that really is all that I want to do for all of you! Capture the love that you share...

Pat + Michelle // Old Newcastle, DE // 5.14.16

My big brother got married. To a beautiful woman, inside and out. I am SO happy and so proud of him. The love he has for her beams from his eyes. It is adorable! Can you just FEEL how beautiful this day was through these photographs? Doesn't it feel like you are in California, Gettysburg and Ireland all in one day? Well, it just so happens to be little old Delaware, the "Small Wonder" of our country. Where we grew up. The day was so incredibly perfect and the wedding was so intimate. They got married at Penn's Place, in Old Newcastle, which had such a great vibe to it. It was so cozy and romantic.. perfect for this small wedding. The weather was what any bride would hope for, with random gusts of wind flowing in, as if the sky was confirming the union of love that was happening that day.

After the ceremony, we hopped around Old Newcastle, and these big grey clouds rolled in, and I was buzzing with excitement. The light was a photographer's dream! Those clouds and overcast skies create beautiful, even lighting. Sometimes the sun will pop out and say hello, sending little beams of light. We were giddy, racing around to get our bride/groom shots before the storm rolled in, and boy did it ever! What timing! The Gods were on our side that day. Love you Pat, and welcome to the family Michelle, you fit RIGHT in! 

Dylan (again, at 4 months old) + Macro is amaze-ballz

I think it's about time I purchase a macro lens. I always rent it as needed, and just simply love it! You wonder where your investment in my photography goes? Usually, new equipment. Aren't these lashes just drool-worthy? Macro is a lot harder than it looks! You think you can just get up in on those lashes and click away? You still need to keep composition and framing in mind (and negative space). When I first used a macro, I was shocked that all of my photos weren't amazing, lol! Amateur! Like anything, you have to practice, practice, practice. Luckily I have some cute subjects to help out in that area!

Jackson turns 3! // Forest Park // St. Louis, MO

Obviously I absolutely love photographing people (kids especially, sorry grownups). Sometimes I have the pleasure of photographing friends or family. It is TWICE as much fun because I am hanging out with people I love, and doing what I love at the same time. And we are all usually super relaxed. That is just what I did a couple weeks ago during Jackson's 3 year photoshoot. Jackson and his parents have become good friends of mine— and I am more than honored to capture their little man on (digital) film, looking so grown up! The light was golden delicious evening light, pouring all over this adorable family! I hope I can get some more sessions during this time of day, it really is INCREDIBLE.

Jackson is a hoot. I've seen him sprout up over the last year, and I have seen his baby face start to look a bit more grown up (waa). He is such a handsome little boy, and has such an amazing attitude towards life. Jackson seems to go with the flow, wherever the wind blows.. or where there are rocks to throw! Lately he seems to run wherever he needs to go, stretching his arms back behind him, ready to take flight! Probably because he looks like a little cherub??! My son Finn LOVES playing with Jackson. I know he is just as happy as I am to have become friends with this awesome little family that we randomly met at Earth Day over a year ago!

Sweet Henry James // April 16th, 2016

Being a photographer is a pretty amazing job. I meet so many amazing people that let me into their lives. They let me into their homes. I get to meet their squishy new babies and teeter-totter toddlers. I get to photograph their teenagers as they are about to float off to college. I see babies turn into toddlers and toddlers turn into fearless children. I mean this when I say that I LOVE WHAT I DO. I have a deep curiosity for human beings, and I love photographing them more than anything (dogs come next). My point here is, that this sweet little angel was born (on the luckiest of days- the 16th is also my birthday- but in September) into an incredible home, with incredible parents. The love in this house, oh the love is indescribable. Can I just say that the chills that I felt during their maternity shoot were quadrupled during our story-telling newborn session. I will stop typing and let you see for yourself. But first, here are a few words to describe the day... 

Baseball, baseball, BASEBALL! (you guys moved to the right town) • sweetness • love, love, LOVE! • dog breath and kisses • more kisses • soft singing • orange & black • GIANTS! • Great Grandma • confidence • pride • beauty • powerful motherly love • proud Daddy • curious eyes • free thinker • independent • gentle • blue eyes • strawberry hair • did I say sweetness yet? ;)

Enjoy and congratulations Maggie & Patrick (Bart & Homer too!).. you are blessed with a sweet little man. 

Hello Dylan (a.k.a.) Dyl Pickle // St. Louis, MO // 12.12.15

Welcome sweet baby Dyl Pickle. You were the fourth element in this family that was meant to be here all along. My heart feels like it has always known you. It was that way with Finn, too. And Finn says he has always known you. Finn has been talking to you before you arrived, and singing too. He says you talked back while in my belly ;) Since day one you have looked at me with knowing eyes, as if you have a secret you are bursting to tell me. Matter of fact, you started baby talking much earlier than I remember Finn babbling. And you really seem to know what you are saying. I just wish I knew this big secret you are trying to tell me! 

Dylan means "Son of the wave, born by the sea." In Welsh it is derived from the word IIanw, meaning "tide" or "flow". In Welsh Dylan was a god or hero associated with the sea. (We are not Welsh, nor do we live by the sea.. but we always have lived by a sea/ocean and love water. The name just felt right!)

Richard is his middle name, after his Pawpaw White (Rick), who is an incredible, adorable, lovable, hilarious, sweet, sweet man (when he isn't being sarcastic or teasing me)—with the twinkliest blue eyes you've ever seen! Dylan did not get his twinkly blue eyes, but I swear his hazel eyes (so far), do have a twinkle. The name Richard is derived from "ric" (ruler, leader, king) and "hard" (strong, brave), and therefore means "powerful leader". 

Dylan was born just two days (and three years) after his big brother Finn, just before Christmas (take notice of the angry elf photos, lol- it was nap time). He was sweet enough to wait until we celebrated Finn's birthday. He also weighed two ounces less, not wanting to trump his big bro ;) He is as sweet as a sweet Dill Pickle, and as snuggly as I had hoped and dreamed. I am beyond smitten over him, as he appears to be with me (but as soon as he realizes how cool and fun Daddy is, it'll all change). He smiles so so so much. I am so glad that he has his Daddy's laid back demeanor! We are so thrilled to have you here Dyl Pickle, finally!

So long Virginia

In case you hadn't heard, I am moving to St. Louis, MO! I am knee deep in boxes, getting ready for the big move, which is all happening suddenly, with little time to even think about it. My husband started a new job at St. Louis Magazine, as Art Director of the editorial art department. I am SO excited for him, and for my family's new adventure in that sweet little town. 

The move is bittersweet, since I will be leaving family, friends, and clients behind. I feel like we were just settling into things here, and the wind decided to whip us away. But I think in my heart, I always knew we weren't going to be here forever. My inner vagabond is excited for the change, while my nesting Momma Hen side wants to stay in our adorable little house, in the comfort of our routine. But you can't resist things sometimes–and it was clear that this move was meant to be. And how nice it is to mix up your routine sometimes. But oh how I'll miss this house! It has dreamiest natural light that a photographer could hope for. The light pours into my bedroom in the early morning, and follows Finn and I downstairs into the living room. In the late afternoon it floods the kitchen and Finn's bedroom with the warmest rays… almost as if the sun was taking an afternoon nap in his room. This image often causes me to stop and gaze into Finn's room at times, trying to hold onto the image like a photograph in my head- forever. Do you ever take mental photographs? I do, all the time. But they just aren't as good as the real thing ;) 

All of these moments sneak away from us as quickly as they grace our presence. As I sat in Finn's room today, snuggling on the chair with him, reading a book– I forced myself to take multiple photographs in my mind of the fat snowflakes falling from the sky outside of his window. I couldn't have asked for a prettier 2nd-to-last day in our perfect little house. Flash forward 6 hours to me cursing at the 8" of snow on my driveway, shoveling and thinking of all of the packing I need to be doing!

finn turns 2 // Alexandria, VA

This is a continuation of the below posts, journaling Finn's 2nd year; leading up to his 2nd birthday in December 2014. I will be posting all week. The final post taken the week of his 2nd birthday will be up tomorrow!

I love these two photo sessions seen below. The first one was taken in September.. on one of our last "summery" days, at the park around the corner. This was Finn's favorite place to go all summer long (besides the beach). I am so glad I decided to grab my camera as we ran out the door that day. These will be some seriously treasured photographs for years to come. I taught him to run the bases (although he preferred to run the wrong way). He slid in the dirt, as if he already knew how baseball players slide (natural instinct for boys I think). His spirit was free here. I have a hunch this little man is going to love baseball. You should see his throw.

The second series was taken on our way to the local Halloween parade. Finn wasn't feeling well, so my super-talented, crafty husband made a school bus out of our radio flyer wagon. He made it with the box it came in, and painted it himself! Finn still rides it around and refuses to let us take the cardboard bus off. 

Mel + Joe // The Tea Barn at Fair Hill // Elkton, MD

These two crazy, adorable kids are the epitome of fun. I was so honored to take part in their special day. When I say that they know how to have fun, I mean it. Silly string at the engagement shoot? Um, yes please. Circus themed wedding at a barn with a kissing booth, ring toss, super-sized Jenga game, skee-ball and corn hole? Um, dream come true for a photographer. From the games, to the countless details scattered throughout the venue, this wedding was asking to be over-photographed. Which it was. And to make matters worse, these two lovebirds were extremely photogenic. 

The wedding took place on an unusually hot day in late September. The sun was shining brightly over the barn the entire afternoon and until sunset. Mel and Joe carried their big spirits everywhere they went that day, barely letting a moment pass without a big smile or laugh (Mel has a great, big, throw-your-head-back kind of laugh). They danced until the sun went down and left in a colorful shower of silly string. They were surrounded by a lot of amazing people that day, who clearly knew how much these two loved each other. And through it all, one big thing that mattered to them on their wedding day, was that everyone was having as much fun as them, including the vendors. What an extremely big-hearted, cool couple. Thanks for having me Mel & Joe!

Vendors: Wedding Planner: Danielle Crumlish | Getting Ready Hotel: Courtyard by Marriott | Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Tea Barn at Fair Hill | DJ: Andre Verlander | Officiant: Randy Franco | Videographer: Valley Creek Productions | Second Shooter: Kelci Alaine Photography | Catering: The Wood Fired Pizza Shop | Catering: Little Baby's Ice Cream