Last year, when I was getting serious into photography and wanting to start my own business, I reached out to the moms in Chloe's preschool class for a little help. I needed to put a portfolio together, so I offered to photograph their little munchkins. It was a no-brainer as all of the little munchkins in Chloe's class were absolutely adorable!
I hit the trifecta with one mom, Schaelene. She had not one, but two daughters, as well as a dog. Wanting to photograph kids, families and pets, I couldn't have asked for a better opportunity! We had a great initial session, and one photo from this session ranks at the top of my all-time favorites list. Here it is:
This is Isabella and her dog Taka, who had been recently diagnosed with lymphoma. I was able to get some images of Taka so her family would be able to always have a visual reminder of what a beautiful dog she is. A few weeks after this photo was taken, Taka's family had to say goodbye. I love this photo so much, that I asked my boss at the emergency clinic if I could display it in one of the exam rooms. The answer was yes. So now when a family has to go through the agonizing process of putting their pet to sleep, they have this image of Isabella and Taka to help soothe their breaking hearts. I like to think of Taka as an ambassador to all the animals who leave our hospital to cross the Rainbow Bridge. And what an incredible guardian she has been.
I was pleasantly surprised a few months later when this same mom asked me to photograph her youngest daughter for her third birthday. We had a great time playing at home and running around the park nearby.
Isabella and Claire no longer go to the same school as Chloe, which means I rarely get to see these lovely girls. We have tried to get together for play dates, but have yet managed to coordinate our busy schedules. So I can't tell you how excited I was when Schaelene asked me to take their family holiday photos! This family has become very special to me as they have been with me since the start of my career as a photographer.
We met at Beal's Point on Folsom Lake - a gorgeous local spot. When the girls got out of the car, I couldn't believe how much they have grown up! And not just Isabella and Claire, but their new dog Jessie, who is 6 months old. I also met big sister Emma, who the little girls just adore. Have a look:
Who are these girls? Holy cow... they are practically in college!
Jessie, the fearless black lab puppy
and everyone in a single shot (even the puppy!)
I'm still trying to figure out when these girls grew up...
... and whether Jessie is part kangaroo.
Thank you, Schaelene, for the wonderful opportunity to photograph your family. It is hard for me to believe how much the girls have grown in this past year, and I feel so lucky to have been able to photograph not just your girls, but your entire family. Because much like this past year, time passes far too quickly. And no matter how fast your girls grow up, you will always have these images to remind you not only of how everyone looked in the Fall of 2010, but also how precious this time is.