This delightful picnic took place at Memorial Park in the Riverside area of Jacksonville, Florida. This picnic basket was used for this couple’s engagement session and an anniversary session. I love that they incorporated a prop that has seen their family grow. Plus, it just gave a cozy feel to all of these spring time photos.
Every age has different challenges with photographing them. The 18 month old crowd is challenging because they can’t sit still. BUT with it’s challenges there are far more rewards. The 18 month crowd while busy is SO MUCH fun. They delight in peek-a-boo, movement, and play. As you can see from these photos we had lots of fun. I love to see how much the parent’s delight in their toddler as well. We go for the posed portrait but also capture the love, kisses, cuddles, the quiet and rambunctious. Even though there is only one child there is numerous poses that can be done to showcase the loving connections between parent and child. It’s so special.
Another benefit with 18 month old is they can’t fake smile. They only smile if they are truly delighted. Those little smiles and laughs just erupt. They are the best and you can see all the little teeth that are coming in. I hope years down the road when these photos are looked at this little boy will see how much he is loved. Also when the parent’s see these photos in months to come they will see how fleeting this time is with our babies and cherish the happy busy child.
I told mom she looked like a beautiful mermaid at the beach for these maternity photos. These maternity portraits were taken at Washington Oak Garden State Park.
Even though these were taken in the summer there were still beautiful flowers. Look at the height of the roses compared to the children. They are the tallest roses I’ve ever seen. The weather played with us all day. I started the session saying- there is a chance we are going to get rained out and we will have to reschedule. Luckily we didn’t have to reschedule, it did sprinkle on us the entire time. The benefit of the rain was that it kept the summer temperatures down. The rain got heavier as we moved to the beach. You can tell their was a storm rolling in at the end of the session. As I drove away it really started to pour. We were so happy to not reschedule because the baby came early. A baby girl came just a little over a week after these photos were taken!
Isn’t this mama to be beautiful? She looked like a gorgeous mermaid at the beach. I can’t wait to show everyone how cute the little girl is that was inside. She is going to be so loved by her two big brothers. The grandparents were along for the photo-session and helped entertain the boys while these portraits were taken. The boys did great though- there is so much room to explore at the state park. It was helpful to have an extra sets of hands to transition between the two locations.
While the gardens and beach are part of the same park it’s best to drive between the two locations. A complete photo-session could be done at either the gardens or the beach.
There is so much anticipation (excitement and worry) on the arrival of a new little one. Every birth is such a miracle and I feel privileged to take a small part in telling part of the families story.
Whenever I am asked for location ideas for family beach photos in Jacksonville, I always mention the rolling hills of Guana State Park. There is a small parking fee but the beach is generally less crowded and there are no homes on the beach. The lack of homes makes me think I’m on my own private beach. The park rangers close the parking lot right before the sun sets. Anyways, these photos were taken in the spring in Florida. It was right when everything was warm but not scalding hot in Florida.
So, after I get my own family photos I look at them time and time again. Well, here’s a little something about me. I look at the photos I take again and again. Every person I photograph leaves a little mark on my heart. I just love looking at the happy memories that were created in our short time together. I won’t even tell you how many time’s I’ve looked at these photos. If you want to talk about your photos after I would be happy to talk about them and to remember all the giggles that happened. It truly makes me happy to see the beauty of family.
On to this beautiful family, this mom does everything perfectly. I knew that she would be perfectly on time, and prepared with snacks, toys, and change of clothes for the kids. She chose perfect outfits for everyone. The kids clothes were from Carters. The eyelet dress adds great texture and detail. The hat for the little man was the perfect beach accessory. It’s too hot to layer so hats, jewelry, belts, and hair bows are great additions.
ADVICE FOR FAMILY PHOTOS
One final note, the one piece of advice I like to give parents at family pictures is to smile through everything. It’s hard to do- I know! It’s my job to work with the kids- parents just smile. We ran, we played and we got wet. The parents were the best and did smile through it all. I think these family photos have the perfect mix of the sweet quiet interactions along with the playful joyful images.
So, what would you like in the background of your beach photos homes, a pier, rolling hills, sand dunes, boardwalks or just water?