Twenty-seven days. That’s how long we were in Europe this summer, re-learning the art of appreciating stillness, of really tasting our food, and seeing new places and things through the fresh eyes of our ten month old. It was restorative to leave behind typical worries, even in exchange for new ones (like how to get a month’s worth of luggage and a baby in a stroller over the dozens of steps and bridges to our hotel in Venice). And although the entire trip was a luxury, the real richness for me came in slowing down just enough to really watch our son develop, to see how he blossomed when both of his parents were there with him, day and night. It was the abundance of time that felt really indulgent — and I would trade it for absolutely nothing.
Apparently, three and a half year old Isaac was not really into the idea of a photo op the morning of our session — though he could have fooled me. Although he was adamant that he should swap out the sweet little blue and white checkered shirt his mama had chosen for his much preferred John Deere tractor tee, he was a perfect little gent for me from start to finish. Had I not been forewarned of his sour mood, I may never have known that he turned on the charm just for me!
Some babies are just meant to be in front of the camera. Niklas, with his sapphire eyes and infectious, tug-at-my-heart-strings giggle, is most certainly one of them. The morning of our session, it was all I could do to keep up with the cuteness each time his face lit up in response to Dora’s slobbery kisses or his parents’ snuggles. Not that I’m complaining (wink); he made my job rather easy. Needless to say – and I think we can all agree on this – Lauren and Eric have a little darling on their hands.
This. This is why I love my job. Because even though I guide my clients toward beautifully lit areas, and suggest ways they can better position themselves in front of my camera, there’s no staging or faking the joy and connection that’s captured once my shutter clicks. And it’s in every darling moment I shared with this blue eyed family of three.
Brody is a grinning, giggling, mop of curls two-year-old with the most contagious enthusiasm for the world. Rebecca and Jason, his adoring parents, won the lottery of toddler cuteness, that’s for sure, and we squeezed out every ounce of it that we could in the setting spring sun. Even in his quieter moments, he engaged fully with those piercing blue eyes, rendering some of the sweetest photographs that I know his family will cherish.
I get it now. There’s a reason why everyone loves Annapolis. And, having grown up on the sea, I understand why people flock to harbor towns during the summer. But for the same reason, I also know why these charming little towns are such hidden gems in the winter: they are peaceful — deserted, except for the sea gulls — and they are breathtaking.
Annapolis is no different. It sparkles under the late afternoon winter sun. The water near the pier is a deep green-blue beneath the frosty glass that covers it. Boats are moored amidst cracking ice, and people say hello to each other from behind their scarves.