Songs of Life, ‘Radiate’ | Seattle Lifestyle Photography

Hello everyone! I’ve been invited to contribute to a blog circle which draws its motivation and interpretation from songs given to us each month; it’s an honor to be asked and a great opportunity to share something a little bit different. Please make sure to follow all the way to the end to link up with the next photographer in our ‘Songs of Life’ circle! Since this is new thing that I’m doing,  this will be a bit of a departure from my usual pet photography (or fanaticism, depending on how you see it!), but totally in keeping with the direction of where my own personal photography already is, and where my professional work is going.

What I’m talking about is Lifestyle Photography, documenting real life, with all its warts and wrinkles, tantrums and tears. Sometimes smiles and hairballs. Outside of my work with rescue cats, and pet photography, I have practiced my skills within other photography genres that forced me to work with low-light, flash photography, with posing, groups, you name it, I’ve been doing it. But I’m constantly drawn away with my urge to focus on what feels more natural (not always is it easy though): documenting what IS. And THAT is where I am headed, with both my professional pet photography and family photography.

Recently I was lucky enough to be a studio audience member on creativeLIVE‘s course by the talented, amazing, honest and awesome Kirsten Lewis on Family Documentary: Modern Storytelling, and it was seriously profoundly life-changing. What Kirsten stressed throughout is how photography is important because of how it transports us in time, it can be controversial, it evokes an emotion/elicits a human response, and often becomes more powerful over time. With our/your own personal photography, it does most of these, so neglecting our own stories by never photographing them (or by only ever having posed portraits done or getting cheesy smiles for the camera) we never will have those real moments frozen in time in our images.

I’ve been concerning myself too much lately that over this summer, we haven’t been doing much as a family, no big trip…too much comparing to what others are doing. We had a move to make though, the heat slows me down and well, vacationing is expensive. But here we are, at the end of the summer, and these are some of my recently photographed family moments. They radiate light, laughter, smiles, sun, life, childhood. These are moments when my son and my stepdaughter are actually getting along, which usually does seem to happen at the playground. I have kept the imperfections of hair in a mess, the sun flares, the motion blur, and just gone with how these make me FEEL. For me, it’s the joy that radiates from them that has led them into this blog piece. The song that was given was ‘Radiate’ by Jack Johnson, and while I originally just saw moments in my head all week of how it made me immediately think solely of my boy, these are the images that spoke to me.

**Please click on the photos to view them bigger  and to scroll through! The next link in the blog circle can be found below so be sure to follow the circle around!

 

Until I post again  (when I will just HAVE to tell you about my upcoming photography conference trip), remember to come say hi on Facebook.

Next up in this fabulous circle of amazing photographers is Jennifer of Jennifer Snavely Photography and you can find her post right HERE. I spy another little boy coming up…!

 

 

 

More Faces of 2013 | Seattle Family Photography

Happy New Year, everyone!! I’ve learned a lot from the last year, particularly in terms of what I can accomplish with my photography. I’ve done all sorts of things new, and I’m grateful to those who have let me into their lives to document and create. Newborns, maternity, live music, headshots, family, children, cats (of course!), dogs, school portraits…amazingly I did all of it. Many people say it’s not good to be a ‘jack of all trades’ or a generalist when it comes to photography work, but I like to challenge myself. It’s good to discover strengths and weaknesses, and recognize areas that need improvement and change, and that’s what we all aim to do in the new year, right?

So in 2014, I am going to make a promise to myself to better document my OWN family’s life. If you’re a photographer, you know well how easy it is to get wrapped up in other people’s projects and events, and neglect your own. I’ll be creating a personal photography ‘catch-up’ list this week, to make sure I get a start on it! I still have photos to edit from my trip to England in the spring!! Naughty Katherine.

Wishing you all a fabulous year ahead!!

xo ~ K

Copyright K.A.Moore Photography. All Rights Reserved. Do not copy or download.

Copyright K.A.Moore Photography. All Rights Reserved. Do not copy or download.

Photo Session Blog: Older ‘Children’ & Connections

Some weeks ago, I photographed a session of a mom with her two adult daughters, who are now living away from home and are in cities miles away. This was a new kind of family session for me including ‘children’; many families want professional photos taken when their children are in infancy through preschool, and then at a multitude times for milestones like birthdays, graduations and so forth. They are all life passages we expect to capture on camera, memories  we won’t likely forget, but ones we want to memorialize with photos and artwork in our homes. But then once the ‘kids’ are grown up and move away, we have less and less chances to have family photos done, especially professionally. There may be the wedding or a baby christening, but there are fewer opportunities for photos, for example, portraits of a mom and adult daughter(s).

With this particular session, I had the mom fill out my super fun and informative questionnaire (as I do before all sessions) that Schinski 102Clets me know more about who I’m photographing, and to understand the value of my doing the portraits. In this case, the last time this mama had had formal photos of her daughters was at their high school graduations, and not even at their college graduations. She also described her favorite photos of her children as being ones of them together as kids, their closeness and bond, and wanted to have that reflected in photos of them today.

Another important thing that was mentioned was how important a particular photo of her mother is to her; her mother had passed away last year and so having her photo to ‘say hi’ to when the mood strikes, is invaluable: “For me pictures are a wonderful way to stay connected.” That’s it, precisely there in that statement. Photographs represent connections: connections to the people and things in them, and to the precise moments that they happened. This also resonates with me, since I am a continent and an ocean away from my family in England, and I can’t help but think of all the occasions I have missed by being over here all these years. I want to encapsulate the times that I do get to go back home to the UK, and as I get older, to have photos of myself with my parents. The photos that I send them of their grandchild/my son are a way for them to stay connected to us too.

I would now love to do more family photography sessions of families with adult children; they are no less important to have done than photos taken at a child’s birthday or at the start of kindergarten. What I found refreshing by photographing adults, was that the now ‘older children’ have a more defined sense of self and know how they want to be seen and portrayed. I didn’t even need to bribe them with candy! We shot at Gasworks Park here in Seattle, with the backdrop of Lake Union, with the Space Needle in the distance, and it was a glorious evening. So now that I’ve shared this, would you consider having professional portraits done as an adult with your parents/family? Is this something we overlook in photography, in this baby and toddler-focused view of parenthood?

Here are some photos from that session: lots of color, beautiful smiles, and sun! ‘Til next time…

xo ~ K

PS. Don’t forget to find me over on K.A.Moore Photography on Facebook

Portrait, Mom & Daughters

Mom & Daughters

Sisters Portraits

Portrait, Sisters

Schinski 132B

Beautiful Mama!

Beautiful Mama!

Photo Session Blog: Growth

I have finally wrapped up my biggest session yet that involved both the growth of a lovely family, as well as growth in terms of myself as a photographer, and I’d love to share.

What started with a grandmother-to-be of a friend asking me to take some candid baby shower photos, this ‘session’ turned into a several months-long photography journey for me, following the family from the baby shower through to photos of twin boys at a few months old. Basically a total of five separate sessions, which covered the shower, a maternity session, a couple’s session and two separate baby sessions of twin boys. And among all that I also took photos of their 4 cats and their dog!! The journey allowed me to explore my strengths as a photographer and presented me with new challenges and types of photography that I had hoped to explore. I also discovered the areas where I need to learn more and improve. Ultimately I feel so grateful to have had this opportunity, and I feel so proud to now have all the prints and products to turn over to the new parents.

When a photographer is invited in to take photos during times like this, it’s not just an experience for the client or family, it is also a journey for the photog. I’ve seen (and personally experienced) the joy and hope that comes with expecting a baby; it was enlightening to see it all from the outside, as I documented it all. I still regret not having my own maternity photos done when I was expecting (or a proper newborn session), so this story unfolding gave me much to reflect on, and it became very important to me to make sure I treated it with the same care and hope as if it were my own photos being done. When I went through my own pregnancy and labor/delivery, I also didn’t have the fortune of having family here, so I was also in awe of this loving, supportive family being a part of it all (and thank goodness, since it’s twin boys!).

A few things that I think are worth sharing:

  • Having maternity photos done is an intimate experience, and one where you are asking the expectant mama to share herself with you and the camera, to capture a time in her life that may only happen one time. I found it to be more fulfilling than I expected, and I appreciated the openness of someone willing to let me in to experience that. It’s a time when you feel vulnerable but there is something so beautiful and amazing about it, it’s just hard for that beauty to not show through in the photos. Plus this was the part where all the animals ended up being models too!! Their intuition about the changes to come was pretty obvious!
  • Taking photos of a loving happy couple about to have a baby (wait, two!!) brings an infectious enthusiasm for life and was a reminder to me of how precious that time is for a couple together before babies take over! The love they have for each other just shone through. Being that I have sadly few couple’s photos of my own (pre-baby and otherwise), I can’t think of a better time to capture that connection and excitement and love on camera.
  • Taking photos of twins babies is quite the bigger challenge than taking them of one, but can be twice as cute. Quite predictably, when one baby was asleep, the other was wide awake, crying or feeding (and then repeat with other baby!). This also was partly why I scheduled two sessions to do baby photos (with one being about a month later) so as to get enough of each twin being a happy, quiet, sleeping baby as opposed to being crying and fussy. As you know, we do like to pretend that they are always quiet little angels and preserve our memories of them like that! The twins are fraternal, so this also means they look different and are quite feasibly running on separate clock, and they also conspired to have ‘baby acne’ at different times to make my editing work ‘interesting’. It made for long sessions and required a lot of patience, but hearing mama ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ over the proofs has already made it worth it. Just wait until she sees her finished prints, wraps and large collage standouts for their walls! Patches (the dog) made sure he continued to be in the baby photos…as if they could possibly show him up, eh?! Piha Babies 69
  • Extra notes: thank goodness the internet makes global communication easy these days. We were able to stay in constant contact about editing and ordering choices while I was overseas in England. Although the process may have gone quicker without a vacation, illness, indecision over which images are favorites, being busy with the twins now that they were born (that’s a lot of work!), but since hundreds of photos were taken over all these sessions, I think extra time made the anticipation greater, my work more thorough, and I think I feel more accomplished with the results.

So tomorrow I get to hand deliver prints, a gallery wrap, a flash drive of images, a couple of 10×20 triptych standouts, two 16×20 collage standouts, plus a few surprises, all in some fun hot pink wrapping and I am just so excited. I have learned so much from this, both personally and professionally (and photographically), and I am grateful. Many many thanks to the Piha/Amato family! I can’t wait to hopefully take more images of the beautiful family again.

xo ~ K

“Growth is the only evidence of life.” ~ John Henry Newman