What can I say about our session with Jessica Ceason? Not enough, that’s for sure. I don’t really like to be in front of the camera but at the same time, I treasure the annual documentation of my family. I like to see what we look like each May as our boys grow and as Matt and I age. (I’m not too afraid of aging. I’ve seen my mom age well and I’ve heard I look just like her… I’m down with that. And about Matt aging, well, I’ve always had a thing for older men.) So I get over the dislike of being on the lens side of the camera and try to smile so that my double chins don’t stick out… there’s a method, I promise. When I figure it out, I’ll let you know.
I remember going to Olan Mills as a kid and having my pictures taken. I didn’t think much about it. I also remember going to Sears with my BFF, Sarah, when we were in middle school. We wore similar flowery dresses and poufed bangs. We posed like we were sisters, because we sort of were. And when Matt and I got engaged we were lucky enough that his church was doing directory pictures and we got in line and had our engagement pics taken.
I really should dig all these images out of the albums and scan them in for you… if you’re lucky I’ll find time eventually. You’ll get a laugh or two out of them.
But when we had Hayden we wanted something a little different. I wasn’t taking as many pictures then as I am now, but I already knew I had a love of documenting photographically my son’s growth. We found this unique store that did things a little differently from Sears or Wal-Mart. I was quite pleased and for several years we utilized The Picture People. Looking back I see it was a step toward lifestyle or journalistic photography. Then I just knew it was something other than the painted tree backdrops of other studios. Monday, even as we were having our pictures taken Matt said, “This is so much better than Picture People.” Now, I’m not knocking that company and I don’t dislike the pictures we had done there. It was by far the best we could find and it was at the top of what we could afford. So, I’m glad I went and am thankful for the pictures that now line my hallway showing how the Hamricks looked each May.
But. Then I saw these pictures. And these. And I wanted our pictures taken in a way that told our story. Not just what we look like on the date the pictures were taken, but who we are, what we are about. What we like and how we interact with each other. I like my family and I wanted the pictures to demonstrate that. So, I set an appointment with the photographer who took all those pictures. We got amazing shots and I am very happy to say that a year (and a month) later they are still the wall and slideshow/screen saver on my iMac as well as on the physical walls of my home, in real live frames. To see the pictures from our first session with Jessica Ceason, click here or you can go to the Shutterfly account and see them. If you need the password, feel free to ask for it.
On that first shoot, I was not disappointed! The boys had skateboards and scooters and their favorite new toy: Parker. I love how Jessica captured the love each of the bigs has for his littlest brother. Priceless.
So, it was time again to have our pictures taken and without hesitation I contacted Jessica once again. Neat story: I loved these pictures for two reasons. I love the people IN them and I loved the distinct German backgrounds. I told Jessica I wanted to go somewhere similar to where Holly had had her pictures taken and right away Jessica knew where we’d go. What’s neat about this story is that the night before our session we were driving home from Paris and Matt said, “I hope we take pictures somewhere “Germany-esque.” Our minds are in tune, I tell ya! So, the day of our session we got ready and I can say the hardest part was making sure the boys had pants with no holes. (In the end, two decided on shorts eliminating the problem altogether.)
Jessica rode with us, getting the FULL experience of running around town with 5 boys (counting Matt, of course). The back row was full of boys who had been toted around Paris for 3 days and stuffed in a Durango until midnight the night before… it was a recipe for disaster, but they managed to behave. In fact, I thought they did pretty good during the shoot, even when their surprises from the Eiffel tower (light-up helicopter things) were an epic failure. (One got caught in a tree and one broke as soon as it was opened. These things were a hit when Nana and Papa bought them for the boys last year… not the same coming from mom, I guess.)
In the end, you can see the personalities in my family and our feelings for each other in these pictures. I do hope Jessica Ceason will find welcoming clientele when she arrives in her new home in the states. I also hope she finds her way back here for a few weeks next May. Maybe I’ll start to line up a good group of clients so she’ll find it worth her time/effort to get back over here!
(Here are a few pictures and to see the rest of them, click here. Again, if you need the Shutterfly password, just ask.)