upon announcing i'd be coming to Portland, OR at the end of October, a sweet old friend from high school reached out to express the perfection of the timing. she explained that she was due to have her first baby in september and was about to write and ask me if I knew any like-minded and like-styled photographers in her area whom she could hire to photograph their family after the birth. now, instead of seeking a referral, we were able to actually schedule a session! :)
at the time i arrived, detta and mike were just beginning to come up for air, having spent the first several weeks of mila's life as most of us new parents do, that is to say totally in survival mode and a bit shell shocked. working through breastfeeding challenges, adjusting to the around-the-clock care of a tiny person, accommodating visiting family who came to help with the transition, and just...well, it's just so much a haze and blur, isn't it? i cried SO MUCH during those first weeks with my own firstborn.
and what's hard about that adjustment period is that it can at times be so overwhelming that it gets hard to see the beauty, or to even slow down long enough to grab hold of and savor the sweetness. my job, as i see it, is to carry my camera into the thick of that hot mess and offer a new perspective: "this is beautiful and you are doing such a good job. someday -- believe it or not -- you will be sentimental about this."
my own baby (age 7 months) came along with me to this session (that's not typical, but i didn't bring a nanny on my trip. haha). at one point i had to pause shooting to tend to his cries for food, and i left detta, mike, mila and their doggies on the bed where we'd been shooting. when i returned, they had settled more deeply into an affectionate cuddle, had exhaled, and exclaimed how unusual but wonderful it was to just BE together. if a photo session can gift a family with a little time to look one another in the eyes and sink into the comfort of one another's presence, then i'm a happy photographer.
besides all this meta-analysis of the newborn phase/haze, i just have to also point out that this baby girl is GORGEOUS. and the moody light of a rainy morning in the Pacific Northwest is to die for.