After 8 months of being a family of three, we finally have pictures reflecting the fact that we are, indeed, a family of three! Being married to a photographer is phenomenal in so many ways (we have a million wonderful pictures of Baby H), but because he is always behind the camera it is rare that there are pictures of all of us together.
We do have a lot of friends in the Chicago-area we could have done a photo shoot with (and probably will at some point in the future, as they are all wonderful!), but we had our sights set on a photographer whose work we’ve loved for a very long time: Anna Kuperberg. I have always been a fan of Anna’s family photo shoots because she is so thoughtful with capturing the true personalities of little ones, and her sessions are so comfortable, so familiar, so real.
Anna is located in San Francisco. We are in Chicago. So I figured that a session with Anna would not be happening any time in the near future. However, we ended up being north of San Francisco for Christmas, so Mr. H arranged a session with Anna in San Francisco before we flew home. It was his Christmas present to the family, and I was so incredibly excited! Since my sister lives in San Francisco we were able to have the session in her apartment. While that worked out well (and her apartment is super cute!) it was a bummer to not be on our home turf and to not have our pup Charlie with us, but in the end we just felt so lucky to be able to have the session.
Here are some tips I have to share, and then we can get onto the “OMG photography goodness.”
If you can, invest in good photography. I think that’s a given for any situation, of course, but so extra important with little ones. An experienced photographer will get great shots and know how to interact with your little ones.
Keep it Timeless & Simple
I’m a big fan of keeping the clothing very simple. Baby H wore dark denim jeggings and a grey cable knit sweater. It’s simple, classic and not fussy. Mr. H and I wore jeans and sweaters. I didn’t want to look back one day and hate myself for a bad outfit choice or be annoyed that I’d dressed Baby H in a dress that was constantly hiked up around her ears. I also wanted to keep Mr. H and I a little more casual because I wanted the photos to feel very relaxed and at home, not trying too hard.
If you took my advice and hired an experienced photographer, you shouldn’t need to intervene when they are shooting your LO. That was something that Mr. H struggled with in the beginning of the session – he was a bit of a “backseat driver,” trying to get Baby H to smile. Anna was quick to correct him and asked him to let Baby H focus on her. I know this was probably hard for him, but we’d hired Anna because we believe so much in her work and it was important we let Baby H focus on her. I think the photos speak to the fact that Baby H was really engaging with the camera.
Most importantly, have fun and enjoy the session. Be silly. Sing songs. Don’t force something that your LO just doesn’t want to do (i.e. Baby H, who usually loves tummy time, just wasn’t into it. So we quickly went onto something else). Have snacks on hand if you need them (we did!). Relish in the fact that you’re documenting a special little snippet of time with your LO.
All photos are courtesy of the amazingly talented Anna Kuperberg Photography.
I might be biased, but Baby H makes some pretty awesome faces.
We were singing “Patty Cake,” one of Baby H’s favorites right now! (we were patting the dough here)
We also clap at the end of Patty Cake!
Modeling is exhausting!
No, she’s not hurt. Sometimes she just loves leaning her head over to the side.
Love this one!
And… she’s about done! (For the record, it looks like I’d just pushed her out there. I didn’t. I was just keeping my hand close by end case she started to fall back.)
Ok, now we’re done!
I couldn’t be happier with the timing of this session. At 8 months, Baby H’s personality is really shining: she’s making the silliest faces, claps and giggles and is so much fun. It was such an amazing opportunity to have this time with her documented so perfectly.
Have you done a photoshoot with your LO?