Reconnecting with families in the light of the current climate has meant so much to me. We have all been through so much this past year. I would imagine most have endured some pretty unique (and incredible) challenges. I would also dare to say that this probably hasn’t been easy. And funny enough, something felt a bit different this past Fall during these Bay Area Family photography sessions.
It’s hard to explain; I cant really put my finger on it. But it was like families understood each other on a deeper level. They seemed to look at each other more intently …. sometimes words were not even necessary, just a kind look exchanged. They were patient and allowed things to just “be”. There was an ease about things. They weren’t looking for perfection …. or manufactured moments ….. they just wanted to be together. It was like there was this level of underlying calm and grace (even amongst the chaos.). When I watched moms and dads and brothers and sisters sit down together for these family sessions, you could just feel it.
2020, you took us on a wild ride. You placed some major bumps of uncertainty in the road. You flipped us upside-down and turned us about in all sorts of crazy ways. But as we slowly started to adapt, we realized how resilient we really were. We saw bonds tighten, and love grow (exponentially). It’s pretty remarkable really. I am so grateful to all our families for allowing me to celebrate their relationship and share in this past year with them. I will never ever take this for granted. Now more than ever. ~ Kent Avenue Photography
See more of this session featured here on The Motherhood Anthology.
Morgan Hill, CA
Life is funny, right? We have this whole insta-community that we often correspond with, yet how much do we really know about those that we are communicating with virtually? Well come to find out, this beautiful (fellow photographer!) mama and her family lived right in town, just a mile and a half from my doorstep ~ a fortuitous encounter that would soon lead to this beloved San Francisco Bay Area Family session!
Soon after discovering how close we lived in proximity to one another, we made plans with another local photographer friend to meet up for a little outdoor wine night (a la Covid style) and chatting ( … and more chatting ;)). I value these moments with industry professionals so much. There are some people whose paths you cross that bring goodness into your life, and Megan is one of them. She is kind and generous. And talented beyond.
Megan asked if I would be open to possibly photographing her family later that year. Of course, I was thrilled. As the date approached, we decided to drive up the Peninsula and spend time at Filoli, one of my favorite local garden estates. We wandered throughout the incredible sprawling property that brilliantly sunny afternoon, winding our way around gravel pathways and pausing amongst the many magical, hidden garden spaces to capture their family together enjoying the sunshine … and one another.
These Bay Area family sessions bring me such joy. Honestly, I am sad when they come to an end. I enjoy learning about people so much. I find their stories fascinating ~ how they found each other … the twists and turns of starting a family … those bumps and those bright spots along the way .… their life passions … and where their heart is currently leading them. I am captivated by all of it. And working throughout their session to create imagery that speaks to this narrative is so much fun!
Saying goodbye is never easy however going home to await their film in the mail is pretty darn exciting. Thank you Megan for allowing me into your family and giving me the afternoon to capture these sweet moments of you all together! I am so grateful that our paths have crossed! ~ Kent Avenue Photography
It was such a joy to reconnect with this wonderful family for this love-filled Bay Area Family session. I have had the pleasure of photographing them multiple times throughout the little girl’s lives and always look forward to seeing them!
We met on the hilltop that day. To say I was excited to see them and catch up would be an understatement. Their energy is truly unreal. I could not get over how much the girls had grown! The sun graced us with her presence that day, shining brightly on that beautiful golden, undulating landscape. We took our time appreciating all of it as we captured heaps of pictures that afternoon.
As the afternoon began to slip away and the warm sun dipped behind the hillside, we reluctantly began our journey back to the car. The girls walked just ahead of us, being silly and engaging in some deep sister conversation. And then … as little girls do … they looked back at us with a little sparkle in their eyes and took off running, holding hands through the tall grasses, and up an embankment to a large oak tree that stood on the hilltop. We grabbed our bags, laughing and running behind them. I mean, how could you not? Their laughter alone was everything!
When we reached the top, they were standing together on a wooden tree swing that hung from that beautiful oak. The funny thing was, their mama has a thing for rainbows …. and ironically when I looked down at the base of that wooden tree swing that warm, late afternoon, wouldn’t you know, it was covered with them. I thought, right then and there, that this moment was made for them. Hus, you make magic wherever you go! When I looked at them closely from behind the lens, I could tell … there were four hearts there that beat … and ached … and rejoiced …. as one. ~ Kent Avenue Photography
Morgan Hill, CA
It is always such a treat to have the opportunity to capture another photographer and their family! Kristin is one of those extraordinarily talented people with a heart of gold. Needless to say, when I had the chance to capture some moments with her and her babies for this sweet motherhood session, I was ecstatic!
We had been talking about getting together for quite some time, but life kinda complicated things for a bit (ie. quarantine, CA wildfires, thick smokey skies, etc) So, we waited ….. and waited. We held off until the skies cleared a bit (literally and figuratively) and inevitably (as it always does) the sun returned. ;)
I was so excited to meet up around the corner from my house that day ~ a charming, little alcove that I had unknowingly driven past for almost 10 years! What a joy it was to uncover this sweet neighborhood spot tucked in the shade beneath the tall eucalyptus trees ~ an inviting outdoor patio that served as a shared community space. We picked up some warm croissants at the local bakery (Manresa Bread) that morning, packed some crisp white linens to place over that whitewashed picnic table and made our way around the corner … kicking off our shoes and enjoying a leisurely breakfast together in the fresh air. As we ate and the children played, Kristin and I chatted about our shared goals ~ all things family, entrepreneurship and personal fulfillment!
In the midst of our conversation, I photographed my way around them, admiring the beauty and intricacy of each and every moment. Every embrace and kind look exchanged meant something. I believe it is these small moments that speak volumes. I was eager for Kristen to see what I saw … two children that were madly in love with (and so very proud of) their mama! They looked at her with such adoration! It was one of those grounding moments that I appreciated so much. You are so loved Kristin ~ thank you for sharing such a morning with me! Fresh air, conversation and connection ~ my heart was full! ~ Kent Avenue Photography
A leisurely late afternoon wandering throughout the golden hillside with this beautiful family for their maternity session was just what I needed! It was a chance to relax, to be together with family, to catch our breath and enjoy that warm late summer sun as they celebrated the upcoming arrival of their first daughter … soon to make her debut in just a few weeks.
The last time I saw them, their little one was itty bitty. And now, oh my goodness, what a little personality he has! He is all boy. And all fun!! At one point, we decided to head down to the lake to collect frogs. He pumped his little arms and took off excitedly down the trail, only to come to a screeching halt as he came upon a flowering bush. He turned and looked at me with a wild sparkle in his eye, and said, “Hold on!! I just gotta pick my mom some flowers!!” ( … like he was on a mission that had been interrupted ~ but for a very important reason. ). All boy. And all sweetness. I honestly could hardly take it. I just know he is going to make such a wonderful big brother. And to know the incredible love his parents share for one another, only solidifies this. This little girl is one lucky little girl. It is these moments that I am forever grateful for ~ an opportunity to witness your families grow and to share in these moments with you. This is truly not lost on me. It is such a blessing. You are such a blessing. Thank you for allowing me to walk beside you … and capture all that magic!
Morgan Hill, CA
When you are born during a pandemic and there is a nationwide quarantine, your family photos get put on hold for just a little bit. But oh-how-sweet it was when we were finally able to meet up! This sunny, loungey, backyard newborn session on film was well worth the wait. Our patience spilled into such a love-filled morning. We had heaps of time that day and you could feel it ~ slower, blissful backyard days. Sunshine, fresh air and family. I was in heaven.
See more of this session featured here on on The Fount Collective.
It was the perfect, leisurely afternoon for this Central Valley newborn session on film! Heaps of airy, summery white linens, a stunning hand-painted backdrop, beautiful eyelet and textural seersucker dresses, and a stunning mama and her babies. Pure bliss.
We setup one of Jess’ stunning handmade backdrops outside in the dappled light, beneath the shade of the oak trees that lined her driveway. Talk about talented ~ oh my goodnessssss. She is incredible. I was blown away. Hearing her process, her story, her ’why’, only intensified my awe. She puts so much into her art and it really and truly shows. We popped a little fan outside to keep cool that 103 degree California day, swept that hair into a sweet pony, drank lots of sparkling water, doordashed some yummy lunch and sat (curled up barefoot) in the driveway talking … and took heaps of photos of her loving on those beautiful babies of hers. I had fallen hard for her art … and have since fallen hard for her family. Ah, she sure knows how to bring the dreamy!
See more of this session featured here on Belle Lumiere Magazine.
Central Valley, CA
This San Francisco Bay Area newborn session was a special one for me. It’s funny how life takes twists and turns, bringing different people into your life at different times. Hillary is one of those people. She is all things goodness ~ an incredible amount of humility paired with an incredible amount of talent. Her home is a magical space that she and her husband have created together. When you visit, it is not just a ‘visit’ but a true experience. There is character and charm …. and ‘story’ every which way you look. A white-washed space where the light dances around every nook and cranny. A space where the artwork and furniture (and trinkets) tell you of where they have been ~ and where they hope to go. A space where the music and food linger in the air, calling you in and inviting you to stay.
This is why family and newborn home lifestyle sessions speak to me in such a unique way. They are relaxed … and undone … and beautiful. I love hearing your story and documenting a little piece of your history. I love seeing you in your element … capturing true expression in a lived in space … rather than just purely posed portraits. To really see YOU, that is my goal. Tangled bodies and hearts.
Santa Cruz, CA
I always thought it would be incredible to be one of many siblings! Friends forever. People that understand you like no-one else does. So you can imagine my excitement when I met this family of seven for this San Francisco Bay Area newborn session! They all get along so well ~ not only “get along” but really and truly enjoy each other’s company. It was so special to see!
Watching a family welcome a little one home is always such a treat, but then you add the fact that this is the first little brother to be added to the crew and it was just next level. Those little girls looked at their newborn brother with hearts in their eyes! He was such a wonderfully natured baby. At one point, after hanging out with us for quite a while, he started to fuss a bit. I think he just need a little rest. As I sat back to give him a bit and change my film, his sisters started to sing to him. First one, then two, then three … and then they were all singing in unison until he comfortably settled. The oldest daughter looked at me and said ” He really likes when we sing to him.” I almost cried. This little guy is so (so) loved.
Los Altos, CA
I’ve been thinking a lot about these little ones lately and the stories we will tell them someday about the year they were born. There will be stories of struggle but also stories of how this time has undoubtedly brought us closer. I feel it to my core. And when I met with this Bay Area family recently for a newborn session, you could feel it. There seems like there is a deeper level of understanding, of closeness, of connection.
I was thrilled to have the chance to capture them with their firstborn (a couple months after he made his debut). He is everything ~ I fell hard. ;) Growing with families is my favorite. Getting to know you, seeing your relationship evolve, and your families grow. It is pretty special. I am so grateful for the opportunity to see you through these seasons and capture a little slice of your love for one another.
San Ramon Valley, CA