a surprising start to 2015

There's no denying that most of my portfolio features black and white photographs. It's been a preferred format for a number of reasons - that it allows for a focus on emotion and expression, that it feels classic and timeless, and that it is simply the way i see, think, feel and create. So much to my surprise, I've found myself not necessarily moving away from black and white, but beginning to embrace color a little more, particularly when the background is neutral and color actually helps to bring in the focus.

This was an entire session photographed in the woods on an unusually warm day shortly after Christmas with a four year old who insisted on wearing a new princess purple dress and spotted coat (from Santa) and a mama who outfitted her four boys (rescue Australian Shepard dogs) in red bandanas. I chose late afternoon for the soft low winter light and on this day, the quality was sensational. If I may add that I had my reservations on the inclusion of the four dogs, but damn - I've never seen four happier, more connected "we are family" (though they arrived from different shelters at different times) dogs. You'd think they'd been together since they were pups. I'd also note that as the lil quickly lost interest, I found asking her to help us find the right spot turned into more than I imagined - many of the portraits were taken in areas SHE chose! (and yes, she chose very well). And as you can see, nearly all of them are in color.

I will end by saying that this was a session I gifted for this single mom who's been away from her family in basic training for the Army Reserves. Reading her posts on how much she missed her daughter and her boys, knowing how hard the transition was for her family, it pulled at my heart. And as I believe in giving where and when I can, well this feels like the right way to start off a New Year - into the woods with a beautiful family and a lot of love.