Monday, December 8, 2014

Family of Elves Holiday Photos - South Florida Portrait Photographer

"So, my mother-in-law bought us all these Elf pajamas for Christmas..."

And that's how GREAT photo sessions are born!!


This family was all about doing something fun and different this year for their holiday photos. (Mission accomplished!) It's really such a special story. Mom & Dad were on a date years ago...dinner and the movie, Elf. Dad proposed that night. So a tradition of watching Elf began and continues today with their boys enjoying this now family classic.

I'm SO thrilled to be a part of such a special memory & tradition in their family.

(Buddy/Will Farrell would be SO proud of Dad jumping on the bicycle!)

xo Mary

CLICK HERE to head over to YouTube to see all the cuteness in a slideshow!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Super Boys | South Florida Portrait Photographer

I would have never thought that I could get these boys photographed in 3 different outfits...with a flyby rain an hour. Wonders never cease! These boys were made for photo shoots!! ;)

Our goal was to update their photos from last year (see those here), but we had some time towards the end to mess around a bit with some "super hero" moves! Great stuff!!


Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Childhood Happening - Telling the Story (without the faces)

You can do a lot with an average cardboard box. But, WONDROUS moments can come from a GIGANTIC cardboard box.

This is the message I get from my brother..."I brought home a couple of dishwasher boxes." Even at 40-something, I know what this means!

Although they are pushing their way to pre-teen status, when my younger girls get with their youngest cousin...they fall right into precious imaginative play. These cardboard boxes were glorious...despite the 95 degree heat in the garage. Still magical.

Oblivious to me, I just spent my time hovering in and out and around their afternoon while they played with this cardboard "fort" and eventually made their way out to the sidewalk where chalk filled out their canvas. I sat on the ground with my camera and just watched the moments unfold.

Spying some favorite stuffed friends lying among the chalk, I went for my favorite vantage point (nice and low) to start capturing the afternoon's moments.

Best part...hardly a face to be seen. But not necessary to tell the story.


Sunday, August 31, 2014

My Mermaids | Underwater Photography

Living here in South Florida puts me in prime real estate for taking underwater pictures. I just can't justify the $$$ for the housing at this point. So when I realized my own daughter actually owned an underwater point and shoot...I said, "Hey, can I borrow that for about a month...or so?"

I've yearned for trying my hand with images in the pool and the ocean. The girls love going over to the city pool to swim laps and play in the zero entry. This was my chance! And I learned a few things in the process.

It was actually quite comical at first.
Tip #1: I don't recommend a dive mask...use goggles, then you don't have to deal with the fogging of your mask. I gave up and tossed the mask.

As humans, we are not MEANT to sink to the bottom...we float.
Tip #2: Dive weights would have been helpful for both me and the girls. BUT, I managed to work around that once I quickly figured out the optimal range when I held the camera out from me underwater AND that the girls were doing some VERY cool things just looking down in the pool.

You grew up in South Florida dummy...put sunscreen on yourself.
Tip #3: Don't be so concerned with your kids' sun protection that you forget to take care of yourself.
(Amateur move.)

And finally...
Tip #4: Just go shoot! I had this idea in my head of what I wanted to accomplish. NOT a single image is even close to what I sought out to shoot that day. I may get to shoot that image in my head someday, but just shooting and getting input from the girls themselves was 10X cooler.


Sunday, August 17, 2014

Painting Canvas Photo Session...Capturing Moments

A field...a canvas...jars of paint...a family. 

I call it a Love Canvas.

I've had this idea for a while, but getting the planets to align with everyone's schedule has been challenging. Of all the months in the year for the planets to align...August. (insert sigh...ugh...sigh here.)
But, it is what is is and I got the girls together early one morning to laugh, paint, create and capture.

The idea in my head was one thing...the reality...more than I expected. The girls had a blast! I got quite the workout running hither and yon dodging the paint with my camera. The little girls even got to splatter paint white sneakers to keep.

The images near the end of the little girls laying on the white sheet are some of my favorites! These were done a bit later in our backyard. It was getting crazy hot and the big girls had to run off...Busy girls! Getting "real" giggling makes for some awesome moments. An added bonus...I got my fence painted!!
(Don't tell anyone...but I just might love the fence more. J )

Love now hangs in our dining room.
(Let me know if you want one for YOUR dining room!)


And I almost know I HAD to do a VIDEO!! J

BONUS...I got my fence painted too!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Unscripted Exploring with Kids | South Florida Photographer

I love these moments. Unscripted. Childhood. Moments....Childhood happening.

I so enjoy photographing my girls and capturing beautiful moments in the process. It makes my heart swell...truly. This time we're on vacation, enjoying a great day out exploring. I was thinking, "Maybe I can get a nice portrait. All of them participating in a smile."

But, walking up and down the beach, picking up sticks, trying to catch crabs and stacking was all we needed. Just part of exploring with your kids and enjoying your time with them.

As a photographer...and a mom, I occasionally I add some words of encouragement for YOUR own photographic efforts. Sometimes I'll challenge you (yeah, there with the camera) to take a different look at how you see photos and hopefully taking pictures yourself.
I posted some of these recently on Facebook with a bit of a statement:

Yeah, I said blurry is OK.
I believe telling the story is MORE important than having "technically" perfect images. The movement of the girls digging in the sand or walking across a fallen tree. That's more important. The story of our day is what I'm capturing.
Think about telling a story the next time you pick up your camera, and maybe not so much about everyone smiling looking at the camera. (Or god forbid...saying "Cheese.")

I LOVE the first group of images...not one of them is looking at me. This was actually towards the end of the afternoon...they were getting tired.

Another favorite is the one of my youngest laying on the tree branch...oh my heart.

Her sisters were busy running over, under and around the fallen trees that were scattered on the beach. And she's simply laying on the tree.
So, I ask her, "What are you doing?"
She replied in a very quiet, still voice, "I'm listening to the ocean with the tree. I could sleep here like they do."

Like I said, oh my heart.