Of all the things you will pay for senior year, the one thing that will outlast them all are your senior pictures.
In fact, when senior year is over, where will the memories be? In pictures. But, here’s a sobering thought; most of those pictures will only exist on a phone, if at all, with many of them disappearing into the dark hole of Snapchat. And as we upgrade our phones again and again, memories will get lost or forgotten. It’s just inevitable. There’s nothing tangible. It’s been said that this is the most photographed generation, that will never have anything to show for it. Nothing in print. No permanent legacy. A forgotten generation.
All of this is hitting me personally this morning, from our family vacation. It has made me think hard about why and how I serve you as a photographer. My family has taken this vacation every year since I’ve known my husband. It is our “official beginning to summer”. My son grew up on these lakes and learned to drive a boat here. My oldest daughter made her Dad super proud when she caught her first fish, and then became “hooked” on fishing with him. It’s only my baby girl’s second summer here and I am so excited to have this be a part of her childhood as well. We light fireworks off the dock for the 4th of July and at the same time watch all the other houses around the lake do the same. In our busy life at home, this vacation is our constant. But just recently, something happened that made me realize how much we take this simple trip for granted: this may be the last time we ever get to be here and it’s hitting me a bit hard. I’m sad that my girls won’t grow up taking the boat to the restaurant for breakfast or fishing until 10:00PM (because the sun sets so late here).
“There’s nothing tangible. It’s been said that this is the most photographed generation, that will never have anything to show for it. Nothing in print. No permanent legacy. A forgotten generation.”
Before our 11 hour drive out to Michigan, I was so busy trying to pack and work that I didn’t have time to think like I am now. I went back and forth with myself about taking my “big” camera and ultimately decided we didn’t need to pack another bag. Especially since, “I always have my phone on me anyway and I’m always snapping pictures with it”. Ugh.
….One. Extra. Small. Bag.
Now, I am so angry at myself. It’s hitting me that I don’t think I will have the opportunity again to do what I do with a real camera; intentionallyimmortalize the family memories we make here. iPhone pictures were “good enough” until I realized that I wouldn’t have the opportunity again. Now I can’t believe all I have is my iPhone to capture the memories from this trip. Let me tell you, there is no comparison. I’m so angry at myself for not taking my camera.
So, sitting here thinking about all of this made me realize something so important; I would have told you to take the good camera, just like I ask you to entrust me with immortalizing this moment in time for you and your child.
As parents, we have to juggle the cost of things: time, money, resources. It can be especially difficult when there are so many costs coming at us at the same time like they do senior year. We look at all the costs as “immediate costs”: SAT registration, college applications, prom, yearbook, senior pictures. But, the problem with this is that only one of these is meant not only for right now, but more so, for later. To capture, intentionally who your child is right now, before they are onto adulthood. Before the SATs and college applications take them to their next phase of life and after all the new clothes go out of style and are given away. Because portraits are not for the “right now”, they are for the “later”. And it’s hard to see that when you are in the “right now”.
We take so many pictures these days and our teenagers they take 10x more pictures than we do on a daily basis. But, a series of portraits is different. My job is to intentionally photograph your son or daughter. To get to know you and them. To provide them with an amazing experience that allows them (and you) to not have to worry about “how the photos will come out” or “how they will look in them”. To smile genuinely, to move freely and laugh authentically. To capture them on their best day in the most authentic way possible. They see thousands of images daily on social media that they compare themselves to and I can guaranteethat you both will love the experience and portraits that I deliver. Why? because, I do everything in my heart and soul to make sure of that.
What I do best is to capture all of that “right now”, and put it in print for you to have later. No, I don’t just throw all these memories onto a disk to be printed on 0.99 drugstore print paper or Groupon’s canvas “deal of the day” that will fade over time. These deals have their place, but it’s not in Portraits. (digital prints today are made for TODAY: quick turnaround, cheap ink, non-archival printing) For my portraits, I believe in quality over quantity because these portraits are a piece of your family history; your legacy.
In my 8 years as a professional photographer, I’ve intentionally sourced the best print labs and products to ENSURE that these memories will be printed brilliantly in color, best in quality and archival for years to come. To ensure that they are there for the later. The same print labs I use to print my own family memories.
We all make stupid decisions sometimes.
I believe in this SO MUCH, yet here I am kicking myself for not taking my camera to intentionally, beautifully capture this time and place with my family. We all make decisions we regret and I’m angry at myself that my real camera is 1,000 miles away and I have to rely on my iPhone. So angry with myself that I couldn’t go back to sleep this morning.
So maybe it costs a little extra for a meaningful and professional experience. Maybe it’s extra time. For me, it was an extra piece of luggage.
Whatever it is, just do it. You will never regret having brilliantly colored prints that don’t fade and not having to worry about corrupted or lost digital files when you need them. Set the extra money, time or space aside to make sure that your portraits are intentionally, carefully created and last forever. This is how and why I serve you and your family as a professional photographer; the same way I should always remember to serve my own.❤️
Senior Sessions start at $150 with no minimum print purchase. Want to know more? Send me a message.
SIX LITTLE THINGS THAT COULD MAKE OR BREAK YOUR PORTRAIT SESSION.
DON’T...BE LIKE A LOBSTER. Don’t try getting that last bit of tan in the day before your session. Sunburn happens and it does not feel good or look good in forever Portraits.
DON’T...BE WRINKLY. Don’t bring a bag of clothes because you came straight from last minute shopping at the mall. Planning is VERY important to ensure that your outfits match the color and style of your location. And...wrinkles, no, no, no!! Just say no to wrinkles.
DON’T...NOTICE OTHERS. People are curious. They will stare. Let them. If people ask me what we’re shooting for, I always answer, “a magazine editorial!” because that’s exactly what we’re doing and that is how I want you to feel, rocking your CONFIDENT SELF!
DO...SPEAK UP! Make sure to talk with your photographer before your session about any ideas that you may have AND what you plan to wear. Again, I can’t stress enough about how the color and style of what you plan to wear can make a good photo great, or a potentially great photo, blah.
DO...SNOOZE. Go to bed early the night before your session. Grumpy does not look good in photos. Neither does the matching baggage you’ll get under your eyes.
DO...ARRIVE EARLY to your session - about 15 minutes early. Take that time to review the location and your outfits with your photographer as well as reviewing what you hope to achieve out of the shoot.
Have you booked your senior portraits yet?
I can guarantee that you will love your photos FOREVER! That’s my specialty.❤️
ADVENTUROUS | POSITIVE | CARING
I do snowboard and would love to go to Colorado or Utah because they have some of the best mountains for snowboarding. My favorite part about this shoot was definitely the modeling part; getting to see behind the scenes and all the work that goes into a photoshoot. I had never modeled before this shoot and never realized how much I would love to start doing from now on.
OUTGOING | ENERGETIC | DETERMINED
I do not ski or snowboard. You can usually find me instead walking around the city all dressed up! I love that I got to meet new incredible people! (at this photoshoot) and that it really took me out of my comfort zone being able to do a shoot for something I don't usually do: ski and snowboard.
GET TO KNOW
MILFORD HIGH SCHOOL | CLASS OF 2018
"I didn't have any fear before we hired you! I was very excited to have you as my photographer and I'm so thankful I had the opportunity! Everything was my favorite. I enjoyed every aspect of the day!! I wish I could do it all over again!"
What was your senior experience like?
A Best Friend Session with friends Kyra and Paul.
What do you like to do when you are not in class? Play a sport? Chess team? Choir? Volunteer? What do you LOVE to do?
I am the captain of both of the volleyball and track and field teams at MHS. I'm the Vice President of Student Leadership, a member of student council, a member of Best Buddies, and I'm also apart of Peer Mentoring.
Who inspires you most and Why?
I'm most inspired by my parents. They push through any obstacles on their way and are the kindest people I know. Both my mom and dad have such big hearts. They have shaped me to become the person I am today.
If you could sit down and share a meal with anyone (deceased or alive, famous or not) who would it be and why?
I would love to share a meal with my Grandfather. I never got to meet him. He died before I was born. My mom always says how great of a man he was and how much I would've loved him. I wish I had the chance to meet him.
Tell me about an experience that has shaped your life and how it has changed you.
This is very recent, but my great aunt who I am very close with has been fighting breast cancer for about 7 years. She has always been a fighter, but we just found out her time is coming to an end. We weren't expecting this at all. My family has had to come to terms with everything and learn to appreciate life because you never know when it's going to end.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, or even spend a month living in another country, where would it be and why?
I would love to go to Italy again. It is one of the most amazing countries I have ever been to. I would also love to go to Australia. It has always been a dream of mine.
What advice would you give to incoming Freshman asking you about high school?
Enjoy it. Don't hold back and take any opportunities that come your way. Make memories and friends that will last a lifetime.
Anything else that I missed that you would like to tell me about you?
Just like you, I'm an Aquarius!! I love the beach and fall.
[I love you Kyra, my fellow Aquarian!!]
"With brave wings, she flies."
Makeup by Claudia Frustaci
Hair by Kelly O'Grady