The Walt Family | Kingston, MA

The Walt Family | Kingston, MA

My family and I lived in Plymouth for 5 years before moving to NH. We loved our town, we loved our first home, we loved our street! We made many friends with our neighbors while we were there and its so nice to still continue to talk to them since moving away. This wonderful family lived across the street from us! They had a little girl, Lilly who is the same age as Henry… maybe a few months older than he is, but for the most part, when we lived there, she was a baby baby! My kiddos would get so excited whenever we saw them outside and they loved getting throw the ball to their dog, Chester. We would always look for Chester on our walks, and we had to invest in a “chuck it” for Porter because that is what Chester uses when he plays fetch…something Ethan continues to remember!

I was so excited when Patricia contacted me to capture their family photos! They chose a beautiful location in Kingston, which I did not even know was there- along the Jones River! Chester was able to be off the leash, which being a puppy owner myself now, they are so brave to have him off the leash! Maybe someday I can trust Porter to come back each time, like this guys did. 🙂

Lilly was so shy at first but then she warmed up to me and her personality came out! He’s a doll and I loved getting to see this silly side of her!  Tommy, Patricia, Lilly and Chester, it was so nice to see you all again and I am so honored you contacted me to spend time with you and take your photos! I hope you love these as much as I do!! Thanks so showing me this place too! I can not wait to get back there and bring Porter! I know he would love it!

The Carlson Family | Sandy Neck Beach |  Cohasset, MA

The Carlson Family | Sandy Neck Beach | Cohasset, MA

I just LOVE LOVE LOVE it when families contact me year after year for updated family photos! These guys I met 2 years ago and I was so excited to see them again! I can not believe how big their littles ones have gotten! We had so much fun on the beach playing! Sorry for making you run mom and dad! 😉

Their session was at Sandy Beach in Cohasset, MA and I have to say I loved this location so much! Not just because I got to be there with this amazing little family, but I always need some vitamin sea and this beach had it all. The tall sea grass, large rocks, jettys, a stone wall, perfect sand and the most beautiful colors as the sun was setting!

It was so fun to see Kennedy and Connor’s personalities shine through these images! They were so much fun and had me laughing as I was editing their photos! Their holiday cards are going to be beautiful, I am sure!!! Merideth, Bob, Kennedy and Connor, thanks so much for having me capture these moments for you! I am so honored you contacted me again to update your family photos!! I hope you love these and I can not wait to see you all again soon! xo.

Swanson Extended Family Session | Winthrop, MA

Swanson Extended Family Session | Winthrop, MA

Hi Friends! Happy Tuesday!! It’s been a little bit since I have been able to blog my most recent sessions and I am going to be honest, I am not happy that I had such a long blogging break! Sometimes, and well…many times, life happens and it is so hard to balance it all. Am I right?! Well, while I am not all caught up in all the things, I am making it a priority to FINALLY get my newest work posted to you if not a few times a week, atleast 1 time a week… I think I can, I think I can, I think I can..

Here we are! The end of October… the season of family sessions and weddings! This wonderful family booked their session with me over the summer, just as the busy family season was about to begin! The location was so beautiful, just outside of Boston at the Winthrop Yacht Club! You will see that there are several families in this. That is because this was an extended family session! I just love these! I know I have mentioned them before, and it is so nice to see so many of you going for them. It is not easy to get everyone together on the same date, to do something like this, but this family did it! They all looked amazing coordinating their outfits and I love that it was a gift to the grandparents!

Family Sessions | What to Wear

Family Sessions | What to Wear

Hi Friends! I have had so many people ask me about outfit choices for their family session, I decided a blog post would be a great way to share that information with you! These are just a few outfit coordinating tips that I have thought about through the years but the most important thing is that you are comfortable!

When thinking about what to wear and props to bring, just know that less is more. I do not provide props for sessions but I am happy to incorporate things that you may want to bring. One thing we can do would be styling to add a little something to your images. We do not need to have a ton of things to style with, maybe just a few.

Here are my tips and tricks for getting ready to have an amazing family session!

Styling your Session

Want your photos to look more editorial? Bring a little extra something with you! Fresh flowers bring an extra “wow” factor to just about everything, especially when they’re attached to something else, like a bicycle basket, tree swing, tent, picnic basket, balloons or car bumper. Whether you want to incorporate larger items like classic cars or bikes, or smaller ones like blankets or hats, even planning for just one extra styled item could be a fun way to make your session more unique.

Coordinating the Crew

As you’re coordinating your outfit with your family, keep in mind that your outfits will look the most cohesive on camera when the color palette and wardrobe pieces coordinate, but don’t actually “match.” In fact, I recommend that you avoid thinking about “matching,” and instead think about what “fits” together. This will create more visual interest, and allow each personality to shine through.

How to Mix Colors

The goal for coordinating a family is to visually break up the colors and shades so that you’re not all wearing the same color on top and bottom. The more we can mix that up, the better. I encourage you to think about planning each outfit with “dominant colors” and “accent colors” in mind. A dominant color is the color that you see the most in an outfit, while an accent has a smaller piece of visual real estate. When you’re planning each family member’s outfit, if you can aim for each person to have a different dominant color, and then tie in and vary the accent colors, it’s going to look great all together.

For example, if you’re wearing a blush dress, soft blue earrings and nude heels (blush being your dominant color), then he could wear a navy coat with a white button-down and gray pants, paired with brown leather shoes and maybe even a blush pocket square (making navy his dominant color). Your daughter could wear a soft blue top with a white tulle skirt (making a soft blue her dominant color) while your son wears light beige pants with navy suspenders and a white button down (making white his dominant color). Now each person has their own dominant color while still incorporating a few touches of the others that will pull all the looks together. This will break up the color visually and highlight each personality. Most of my moms choose their dress first, and then build the rest of the family’s outfits based around that.

Remember, I recommend selecting those softer, lighter tones and avoiding those ultra-bright, bold colors. The camera loves shades of soft pink and muted blues, mixed with sophisticated light neutrals like heather gray, creams, leather brown and white. Feel free to vary the shades of the colors, too. That softer color palette fits beautifully into a natural environment, and can easily be paired in so many different ways.

Mixing Up the Pieces

If you have multiple children, don’t feel like you need to put them all in the same type of outfit. For example, one of your daughters could wear a dress and flats, while the other wears a skirt and boots. One of your sons could wear a bowtie, while the other one wears suspenders. Mixing up the wardrobe pieces will bring a great visual interest to the photos.

Prepping Your Little Ones

Before your session, pack a bag with snacks, water and any small objects (like toys or lollipops) that might help me get their attention when it’s time for them to look at the camera. If they are old enough to understand you, it’s a good idea to prepare them for what’s to come before the session starts. Explain how much the photos mean to you so they know to be on their best behavior. A lot of families discuss and pick something fun in advance as a treat after the session if they’re good listeners, like an ice cream cone, for example. It also helps if they’re bellies are full and they’ve has some good rest beforehand. Once you prepare them physically and mentally, then feel free to give them (and you!) grace! They’re little, and I know that some days don’t always go as planned. I’ve seen it all and will make sure to get you great photos, regardless of their moods. My goal is to make this as fun and stress-free as it possibly can be for you and your family!

I hope this is a helpful guide when it comes to getting your family ready for your photography session! If you have any questions or more things to add, let me know, I would love to hear from you!

xoxo,

Alex

THE BRIDE: Getting Ready | my thought process during these moments

THE BRIDE: Getting Ready | my thought process during these moments

Sometimes I am feel like I struggle with what to write… What do brides want to know? I was a bride once…. what were some things I wanted to know when planning my own wedding? Today’s post I am going to be focusing on specifically what is going through my mind when the bride is getting in her dress!

During this time, I am looking for a few very important things:

  1. Access to natural light. I do not like to use the lights in a room and typically you will see me turn them off. I want all the natural light I can get and it needs to be full length if possible. What I mean for this is that I do not want to use a small window that is high because that will only expose the brides torso properly when the full body/gown is what should be photographed.
  2. I am looking for a clean space, neutral with zero distractions in the background! This means that I might ask the bridal party to clear out any clutter and trash from earlier in the day in one specific area of the getting ready space.
  3. I need mom and bridesmaids to be dressed before the bride. I usually will begin to let them know they can start getting ready about 20 minutes before the bride gets in her gown.

So, once I have those things and the girls are changed and ready… now it’s time to process through all of the “must-have” shots that I want and need to capture.

In my head, this is what I am almost always thinking when the bride is about to get in her dress…. and I’m actually going to write it like I process it internally so that it really does show you how I work and achieve my end result :

-Okay soooo Let me just scope out the area to see where my best light is coming from… She’s going to get dressed over near the large window there but I will need to over-expose the background and if I don’t have any reflecting light inside the room to bounce back on to her, I am not going to want to stay in that spot for very long incase the back lighting is too strong and the photos do not come out. So I will do a few back light and then I can change my position over here but we will need to clean up the half of the room to get zero clutter in the background. hmmm I might be able to pull her veil around her to soften the light on her too so the light is not too harsh on her face.

– Next, I’m thinking about vertical and horizontal…. I always need some vertical shots of the “getting in the dress” process for blogging purposes. These vertical shots show the whole dress and once I take that vertical shot, I scoot in close for another vertical shot that is tighter. (I do this because I’m thinking of the blog post! I also want to capture one of two gorgeous horizontal shots of this part of the day too! Horizontal shots will break up the blog post AND give my couple get options for their album design!)

– After the bride is zipped, buttoned or laced into her dress, then I have a whole new list of things that I want to capture. I work hard to capture some vertical shots of JUST the bride acting like she’s putting her earrings in. I usually use my 50mm for these shots so that it’s focused just on the bride and the background is out of focus.

– Now is the time when I get to be creative because I’ve gotten my “must have” shots. Many brides will have their mom or MOH help them get ready, or even both! When its time for putting on shoes and the veil, I am more relaxed knowing I go those first initial important moments I can move around and get different angles and if I am in an angle I really like, I might stage a few of the getting ready ( zipper/button shots) again from a different view.

So before I go I should probably share that EVERY wedding is different and this is just ONE example to learn from!!! I hope that it was helpful walking through my thought process during this 10 min span of the wedding day!!! If you like hearing my thought process and my approach to certain parts of the day, let me know and I’ll keep doing them!! 

xoxo,

Alex