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The mini accordion albums came in from this Little One’s session and I thought I’d show you a little peak! Everyone seems loves these handy albums, as they are perfect for a purse, fridge, or desk. It really is a great way to show of your family! And it comes with most sessions!

When Sarah comes to visit, I use it as an excuse to do some testing as she is very willing to play the role of any character I dream up. I happened to have a dress that fit her – yes even though I’m 28, I can still somehow manage to fit into the same clothes as a 13 year old. The dress had a slight vintage feel to it, so to continue the feel we curled some soft waves, braided a bit and made a wildflower crown.While many photographers have children of their own to photograph any time they wish, I do not yet have this opportunity, so Sarah makes for the perfect model to experiment with. Sarah and I explored various parts of the property surrounding my parent’s home and ended the woodland walk on the Skinny Road glowing with the evening sun.

 

I’m a big fan of imagination. I love books and how your minds eye can create the scene and characters, and really make a book come alive. Sessions are kind of like reading and writing books for me. I have certain things in mind to help create a story, but as the session begins, the story unfolds into something magical – always based on the characters in the story, a child or a family. They help me write the story. One of the props I brought to this session was a yellow parasol. I had expected to use it in someway, and I’m so glad I was able to watch Abbi’s little story unfold. I call the series Dancing on Sunshine.

I had several pre-session detail shots from this recent session that I thought deserved a separate post. I also thought I would share how I made some of the items for the session for those other crafty people out there that are like myself.

My session theme was based on color and location, and I instantly thought of lemons and berries when I saw what the children were wearing. I didn’t want to do the typical lemonade stand so I made a fun yellow and white cotton canopy (idea from here), and set up a small table and tree stumps for chairs. I included some other props in the scene that could help occupy little hands such as lemon crisps, lemons, berries, and a yellow parasol.

The most time consuming project was the canopy, but it was definitely worth it. I cut 3.5″ strips of yellow and white cotton about three yards in length and sewed each strip together, alternating colors. I hemmed the top,  bottom, and raw sides but gave a larger pocket at the top to allow for different things to fit. Think of curtain panels. I ended up just using a bent wire clothes hanger for the top, but you could also use an embroidery hoop. I then used safety pins on several inner sides to tie a thin rope to, and then tie it to the tree branch. You could also use matching ribbon to make it more decorative.  I knew I wouldn’t have the whole canopy in most shots, so I didn’t see it as necessary. It happened to be a very breezy day, because of this, we used the safety pins again, only this time on the inner bottom to tie the looped rope to attach the canopy to tent stakes. I’m thinking I might use the canopy another time in the future for an outdoors newborn session. If you have questions, just let me know.

I also made paper fans and hot glued them to small dowl rods to incorporate the kids names into the session.

The lemon crisps were from this recipe and they were tasty! And easy too!

I really liked the feel of this session… sweet, bright, and sunny.

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What makes The Whimsy Tree different. . .

When someone schedules an outdoor family or little one’s session I ask some basic questions, one being “what colors does your family plan to wear?”, and sometimes I’ll even give suggestions. From that point I let my imagination run wild with ideas based on colors and their age. If parents share details about themselves or their children, it adds an extra source of inspiration that will complement their own personalities. You’re not just scheduling a session to get pictures taken, but rather, your scheduling a sort of play date. This play date will most likely have whimsical scenes or elements with different places to explore and play. You and I won’t just show up at an agreed time as if it were an average studio session, instead I will be there hours early, scouting the perfect spots and setting up different scenes before your arrival. This not only allows for more natural expressions, but becomes a fun, lasting memory of something the family’s experienced together. What’s created in the end are beautiful works of art, something worthy of hanging in your home for years to come. I know these days there so many different kinds of photographers, but as for me, there is this continuos development of style that embraces the childhood imagination and the closeness of family… this is what makes my heart happy.

The image below is a color inspiration for an upcoming Little One’s Session and it reminds me of sunshine.