UPDATE: This post was made as Shinn Shots Photography and does not represent the style or goals of Blue Space Photography. Because I believe in knowing where you’ve come from, I’ve left this here as a reminder of the journey that led me to where I am today. I now only shoot storytelling sessions, so be sure to check out my current work in more recent posts! – Lauren
Who does a photo session the day after Halloween at a train museum? This gal, that’s who.
And we had a great time!
I’ve known Shelley for a little over a year now and she’s always seemed familiar to me. You know those people that you meet and it just seems like you’ve been friends before?
When Shelley loaded up on train outfits from Gymboree and told me that she wanted to do a photo session at the Southeastern Railway Museum, I’ll admit that I was a little nervous. Kids have one goal in mind at the train museum. Climb. On. Trains. Especially when they’re two and four years old. And especially when their boys. And although you can get some great action shots from that goal, it’s a bit tougher to get sitting still shots.
As I usually do at my photo sessions, I came prepared with lots of entertainment for the boys and the knowledge that the kiddos would have their own agenda that didn’t include pictures. I prepped Shelley and Kyle that the boys wouldn’t do everything that I asked and that it was ok. Shelley and Kyle did a great job of rolling with the punches (not literally, thankfully!) and letting the boys have a bit of freedom.
Of course, freedom with a two year old is a little different. Jonah is a lot like my Abi was at two. He runs. Abi trained me well to take pictures of busy, running children. At her two year photo shoot on the beach, I have more pictures of her backside than I do of her face. I came with the plan of having the boys run and tackle me, but Jonah had a different idea. Run. Toward. Trains. He wasn’t much interested in running towards me or anyone else. So…I put myself in between him and the trains and we were good to go!
And like any two-year-old, Jonah is an expert at having meltdowns. Of course, that just gives me a chance to get on his level. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- it only takes a moment!
Carter did a great job at the beginning! He was ready to talk with me and happy to smile. What a cutie and what beautiful eyes! His eyes are so unique – a spotted mixture of green and brown. Amazing.
Once we got on the trains, Carter was ready to explore and was completely uninterested in anything I had to suggest…even including a snack! It was alright though. I had picked our trains carefully and there was some wonderful window light coming in no matter where he went. I just had to get him to stand still long enough to snap the shot! (I love his expression here!)
The kiddos gave out eventually and wanted to walk the trains. We got some great shots on the trains too, but the moments of cooperation had passed. I just have to post this picture for Shelley to see – I’m pretty sure it will look familiar to her! This is what happens when you contain two boy on a train. They scream 🙂
The boys had been promised a ride on the caboose at the end of the session. There wasn’t room for us on the first go-round, so we had to wait for the second departure. And, oh my, did that caboose take a long time coming back. I mean, a painfully long time, even for me. You could see the train coming, but it was moving at a snail’s pace. This is how you torture two young boys.
I managed to save Carter from tears by telling him my famed wide-mouth-frog story. I always wait until I’m walking away from a photo session to put my camera up and here’s why:
It’s never too late for a good picture.
While the boys enjoyed their train ride with their aunt Shannon (thanks for coming out to help, Shannon!), I got to sneak away with Shelley and Kyle for some couples’ shots. I was THRILLED when Shelley told me she wanted some pictures of just the two of them. She mentioned that they probably hadn’t had professional pictures done of them as a couple since their wedding. I’ve found this to be true for a lot of parents and always try to make it a priority to get pictures of the couple alone at some point during the session.
This time, however, I was super excited because I’ve been studying up on a new technique to use during sessions (especially couples’ sessions) to bring out genuine emotions and expressions. As Shelley put it during the shoot, “It’s like a little mini-therapy session.” Exactly. It’s more than a photo shoot…it’s a time to be together as a couple and remember what bought you together to begin with. Keep a look out for these “Beloved” sessions coming sometime in the new year.
Thanks to Shelley and Kyle for inviting me along to the train museum for a chilly and fun fall morning!