It started out as a simple thought. Bruce and Linda had not had a portrait taken together in a long long time.
Chances are pretty good that most people who don’t have small kids at home, and many who do, haven’t taken the time to be photographed together either.
They were getting ready to celebrate their 45th anniversary, so Linda called to schedule a portrait session for the two of them. The longer we talked we realized that a basic portrait just wouldn’t do. We absolutely needed to capture the very essence of this relationship, and in doing so we needed to create a true heirloom legacy — something to one day be passed along to their grandchildren and to remind them of the joy and the active life and the romantic feelings that these two have for each other.
If you knew this couple, one thing you would know for sure is that they are every bit as much in love today as they were 45 years ago. They’ve traveled quite a ways together down this road called life, and they still have a long long way to go. We decided to spend the better part of a day together so that we could document a relatively normal day in their life — from breakfast time to a dinner date with some fun stuff thrown into the middle of it all.
Our schedule was a little bit whack-a-d0odle and out of order, but we were aiming for the essence of a day. We came pretty close!
To keep things real, westarted out at breakfast time. Toast and eggs. T-shirts, newspaper, and coffee. It feels like home! That’s for sure.
The garden needed a little weeding and trim work, so after breakfast we headed out to the back yard for a little work session.
And then we all came in to exercise.
… Ahhhhh! So that’s how Linda keeps her girlish figure and how Bruce keeps up with her day in and day out. Did I mention how much I love love love their energy?
Most days find Bruce and Linda very-well connected to their tablets and computers where they check up on their grandchildren, their own parents and siblings, and of course their friends.
Have you heard the old adage about the couple that hunts together? That’ okay. Neither have I. In fact, aside from my own grandparents, I can’t even think of any other couples I know that both people enjoy a frosty trip out to the lease, but every year they hunt together . . . deer, quail, elk . . . whatever else it is that people hunt.
Sooooooo — just for fun we decided to create a Texas Hunting Season parody version of the famous American Gothic painting by Grant Wood. The house next door to them had a peaked gable that worked nicely for the background.
We laughed and laughed.
Fortunately none of the neighbors came out to find out why we were standing in the middle of the cul-de-sac with camoflauge, hunters’ orange safety gear, a deer rifle, and antlers, but if they had we would have made up a crazy lie.
I don’t believe that we could have gotten a more accurate facial expression than Linda’s stern look if we had brought in a professional acting coach. PRICELESS! It was so very hard to keep a straight face.
On another note . . . did you know that Bruce is actually ONE SUPER COOL GRAMPA? Well, he IS! His granddaughter is learning how to drive, and when he takes her out to practice, he lets her drive his “baby,” this classic Porsche convertible. Granddaughter wasn’t with us when we were shooting, but we still made sure to save time for a drive to the park. THIS, my friends, is one sweet ride!
It was a beautiful day to put the top down and enjoy the breezes, and also to take a walk through the park.
As a highlight to our very active day, we brought my makeup artist, Cintya Velderrain right to Linda’s own boudoir for a special hair and makeup session so that she could be her loveliest in time for their at-home date night.
For date night, Bruce and Linda prepared a delicate chicken piccatta with broccoli and artisan bread. Of course they washed it down with some red wine.
Bruce is a fantastic chef, and he makes a mean chocolate martini too, but that’s a story for another time.
Dinner and dancing — Forty-five years of marriage — and the romance between these two is still palpable. There’s something very very special about the way the look into each others eyes.
We took all these beautiful images and a few more and bound them together into a lovely album to showcase their unique relationship and the love that has carried them through the years.
Happy anniversary Bruce and Linda! You are a most special couple. I absolutely love you to pieces!
Hollie and John are getting married on Saturday, and I can hardly wait for their big day to get here.
It rained on us when they came to town for their engagement session, so we caught a few quick images at the park with umbrella and boots, but the skies really opened up, so we skedaddled back into the studio to finish up.
They say that rain on your wedding day is good luck, so we’ll go ahead and claim that luck from the engagement shoot as even more good luck to come.
This wedding is very super special to me — and NOT just because Hollie is a stunning redhead like yours truly. It’s special because Hollie was my very first senior client EVER!
I had met Hollie and her mom through the Taylor High School Cross Country team when she was a senior and my son was running as a Freshman. I attended every cross country meet that year with my camera and photographed the runners as if there was no tomorrow. That was when all that stood behind my photography business was a name, a sales tax number, and a dream in my heart — I had a WHOLE LOT to learn about photography and about the business side of the art.
Cross Country meets take a long time, and you wander around with the rest of your team parents a LOT … so we got to be friends. Then, in the springtime, Hollie’s mom, Sarah, actually hired me — did you hear that???? HIRED ME!!! — for money — to take senior portraits for Hollie. I don’t think I netted $40 on that job, but I DID get paid! It might as well have been a $4000 session as excited as I was. To be honest, though, I am very disappointed in those senior portraits when I look back at them today because –well, I was a beginner. Like so many people, I had a great eye and a lot of passion, but I had barely started honing my skills. Still, I will ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be grateful though, that Hollie and Sarah put enough faith and support behind my dream to start my baby steps.
Now HERE’s a flashback!
Hollie and the other senior girls on the team started a tradition that lasted for several years. They would run in the last “extras” race but would drop out somewhere along the course to get muddy before running in together. OHhhhhhh how I loved their spirit!
Hollie still plays in the mud, but in a serious way — now she wears coveralls and a hard hat as an oilfield engineer with Schlumberger. I STILL love her spirit and sense of humor — oh and she snagged herself one of the sweetest guys EVER while she was studying in Kansas.
They’ll both definitely be rocking a more formal look on Saturday, but I’m sure there will be plenty of spirited antics with these two — and I’ll be there to capture the whole event.
Days around our house have been busy and exciting lately. You see, we’re especially looking forward to a very important wedding in January. At this wedding, I will not be allowed to have a camera because the groom is my first-born son. (Don’t tell anyone, but I’m seriously looking for a pretty evening bag that will accommodate our Canon C-9 Point and Shoot, just in case I start going into photography withdrawal tremors)
I DID, however, get to spend a little very special time earlier this fall with Ian and his lovely fiance’, Lisa, to create some memorable engagement images and a Save the Date card. Here’s what we came up with!
This is the front of our 5x7 Save the Date Card
And this is the inside spread.
And this is the back of our little card.
So as you can tell, I’m getting a beautiful new Daughter-in Love — and of course Grand-dog Jäger adds laughter, tail wags and slobber to the scene.
In posting these photos, I’m a little gushy and proud today. I can’t help but share our music video as well as some of my favorite picks from our outing.
Naturally, I’m a bit biased, but I think you’ll agree that we’ve got one heck of an adorable and so-in-love couple.
Ian and Lisa . . . I love you both BUNCHES and thank you for allowing your dopey mom to follow you around one afternoon with her camera.
For more engagement fun, here’s a video I created with all of the proofs from our session. Pour yourself a cup of coffee, sit back, and enjoy young love and One Big Dog!
Just yesterday I photographed the super scrumptious, gorgeous, and oh-so-fun wedding for Aubrey and Michael. Getting to know them over the last few months has been a wonderful treat, as I’ve come to absolutely adore their quirky dry sense of humor and the special love language that they share with each other.
After their engagement session earlier this year, they chose to make their album into a guest registry book to collect signatures and sentiments from the guests at their wedding.
Just as we rarely, if ever, share bridal portraits before the wedding, I didn’t want to spoil any surprises they might have in store by posting the album before they shared it with their guests.
So today, here is the engagement album and guest book for the brand new Mr. and Mrs. Skinner!
For their engagement photographs, Aubrey and Michael participated in a Beloved Experience Session. Beloved, developed by Canadian photographer Jesh De Rox, utilizes a collection of exercises that Jesh calls experiential invitations. These invitations lead the couple through a variety of emotions, feelings, and expressions. During a Beloved photography session, we play games, sing and dance, tell secrets and stories, share hopes and dreams. When I get to host one of these amazing events, I feel very privileged to document such precious and heartfelt moments and to create images that will serve as a love- legacy for years and years to come.
This particular album needed lots of open space for writing, so we left wide margins and open space on several of the pages.
Congratulations and best wishes to you Aubrey and Michael. I look forward to seeing you again very soon to relive your wedding .
Michi and I started sorting through the images today, and all I can say is WOW — WOW — WOW!
When Laura and John asked me to photograph their wedding, I was beyond excited.
Laura and I first met several years ago through our positions in medical nonprofit public relations, and we’ve been involved in several projects together since then. Her gutsy “Take-on-the world” spirit has always impressed me, and the sparkle in her eyes only begins to reflect her generous caring heart. You’ve GOTTA love a gal who devotes her days to saving lives by promoting organ donations all across this great State of Texas.
And John . . . well, he is absolutely head over heels in love with Laura. Good choice, John! Great catch, Laura!
We met for engagement photos on the grounds of the beautiful Houstonian Hotel and Spa. This is where they had their first date and also where John proposed to Laura, giving her his grandfather’s heirloom diamond in a beautifully–set ring. Sentimental? Oh yeah!
After our session we just HAD to swing by Tasti Delite, one of their favorite hangouts for frozen yogurt. Oh MY! It is GOOD STUFF!
I can hardly wait until their big day — January 21, 2012 — and I’m sure they’re a bit excited as well!