Tina contacted us to schedule a family session centered around celebrating her daughter, Alina’s, sitting milestone. She looked through our website and loved the garden setting, so we set a date for their session the next month. The gardens are typically only available on weeknights, so if you’re hoping for this location for your session, you’ll need to plan to be available on a weeknight evening.
Tina also asked to add on hair and makeup services, and we sent over our style guide to her to look over. Our style guide isn’t intimidating at all! It’s a short and sweet read, and it really helps our clients understand how to mix and match wardrobe pieces for all session participants to have a cohesive look. If you want more assistance, we are more than happy to look at iPhone snaps of whatever combos you’re considering, or we can have you stop by the studio for an in person style consult. You simply bring all the clothes you’re thinking of with you, and come by to spend 20-30 minutes with me. I love meeting my clients in advance of their sessions, or getting a chance to catch up with clients who have worked with me before!
The evening of the session, I met the Tina, Danny, and Alina at the gardens. It was a beautiful evening and the temperature was perfect for June! Tina had been worried the week before that it would rain on the day of our session. We reassured her that it was too early to make a weather prediction and that we would watch the weather closely and reschedule to a different time if it was a problem. Atlanta can be unpredictable when it comes to weather during the summer, so we often will make the call the day before or day of and then reschedule for a future date that works for us both. We also give our clients the option to move into the studio for a studio session if they don’t want to (or can’t) reschedule for another day in the future.
Alina was a curious and happy baby. I loved the dress Tina had chosen to wear, and the outfits she had brought for Alina were adorable. We started with family images to get Alina comfortable and used to the sound of the camera. I am very respectful of little ones and approach them slowly and quietly until they have indicated that they’re ok with me and feel safe. The best way for a baby to feel safe is in the arms of their parents - so that’s why I always start with that! Tina and Danny absolutely love their little girl, and they did such a great job snuggling her and following my verbal prompts for interaction with her.
After the family images, Alina was completely comfortable with me, so I moved into her solo portraits. Because she was sitting up by herself perfectly with no wobbling, I knew it was safe to have her sit on the stone pathway. After a few shots from there, Tina changed her into a second outfit, and I pulled out the sweet little quilt I had brought along.
At first, Tina and Danny were calling to Alina from behind me and trying to help. I always ask parents to stand off to the side and not to call to their child or wave like a windmill being my back. There’s a couple of reasons for this request. Firstly: your child knows and loves you. They’re going to look right at you, and not at my camera, and it will make getting those gorgeous images with eye contact to the camera very difficult, if not impossible. Secondly, your child is in a new place with a new person, and will easily become overstimulated. Overstimulated babies and children tend to do one of two things: (a) decide they’re done with it all and withdraw (b) feed off of all the energy and become super excited to the point where they are too busy running/rolling/wiggling to want to interact with me. That being said, if I feel that a little one would do better with a parent behind me after I’ve assessed how they’re doing, I will absolutely ask for some assistance. As soon as I explained this to them, they immediately stood off to the side and watched quietly, and voila: Alina decided she was interested in looking at me. I encouraged her to play with her feet by tickling her toes and putting her foot in one of her hands. I really love when babies grab their feet because it’s such a unique part of that particular stage in their life… and it’s just about the cutest thing ever!
After I finished up with solo images, I rounded up the family for a few more family shots, and then we were all finished. Both Tina and Danny mentioned how much fun the whole experience had been and that they had enjoyed themselves so much. I’m always happy to hear this from my clients, because I work hard to ensure that your time with me is fun and relaxing - not stressful. I know how much work and time you’ve put into your session on your end, so when you arrive, let me handle the rest. Even if you’re concerned that your little one isn’t “cooperating”, let me assure you that they are. All you need to do is follow my guided prompts and love each other, I promise.
Enjoy some of my favorites from Alina’s milestone/family session!
Do you want to capture your baby just as they are now before time completely slips away and you’re packing their car for college? Contact us and we’ll chat about your vision, your goals for your session, and our approach to see if we’re the perfect match for your needs!
If you're expecting a baby or already a parent and looking for a newborn, maternity, or family photographer, I would love to work with you to create images that you will love for a lifetime. Watch this video to hear about my philosophy and see how I work in the studio so you can determine if I'm the right fit for you. I can't wait to meet you!
Lily Sophia Photography specializes in newborn, baby, maternity, and family photography in Atlanta, Georgia and surrounding areas.