motherhood | a portrait series

in the past i've offered mini photo sessions for mother's day but this year i wanted to switch things up. a portrait of motherhood, a celebration of it, but no kids allowed. so a few weeks before mother's day, i made of list of my local mama friends and sent the following email : 

i'm currently in the throes of the tiny early days - little sleep, lots of spit up and i couldn't tell you the last time i washed my hair. so much time and energy and love and literal tears poured into one tiny helpless being. these emotions continue of course throughout the years, they just take different shape. you give and give, pour out yourself to those around you over and over. some days you may feel overlooked yourself, or perhaps like no one really understands how much of your body and soul is so deeply wrapped up in mothering and loving. like the dishes and laundry and diapers or the homework and soccer practice will never end. the day in and day out routine of tiny tasks has meaningful and longterm significance though some days your hard work feels unseen.

so in anticipation of this mother's day, i'd love to gift my mama friends with a portrait. a photograph of the bad-ass woman that you are, giving body and soul. to give you the opportunity to be seen. to felt lovely and beautiful and strong. they'll be simple but i hope meaningful. and not just for you, but years down the road, for those little ones. a snapshot of the woman that loved them unconditionally. no matter how meaningful or monotonous your days may feel right now, this is a chance to slow down for a few minutes and document it. i think you'll be glad you did.

so squeeze in a shower, throw on some lipstick if you like and let's hang out for fifteen minutes while we celebrate you in this wild and wonderful stage of motherhood. there will also be champagne and treats so really you have no excuse. details below, i'd love to hang out.

to be honest i expected to receive a list of excuses and "so sweet but maybe when i lose 15 pounds" emails in response. but you guys, almost every single mama responded with a super enthusiastic yes (the bribery of champagne might have helped). and while there was still the typical "i'm an awkward mess in front of the camera" banter before we started, it was beautiful to watch each lady slowly relax and share their true selves. and fabulous portraits aside, talk about a super fun day - it was like i had 15 play dates scheduled but there was booze and no one interrupting! and the challenge to photograph so many subjects in a unique way within the walls of our tiny home was a welcome one amidst the creative roadblocks of newborn parenting. 
enough chatter - have a gander at these lovely ladies, inside and out, beautiful for so many reasons and in so many unique ways.

and baby makes four | silver lake maternity session

oh boy oh boy these guys are something else. talented designers, expert curators and parents extraordinaire. photographing families over time has got to be one of the best parts of my job. i shot molly + brandon's intimate wedding back in 2011 and then molly pregnant, james turning one and now as they were awaiting baby boy number 2! (he's arrived, healthy and delicious!) besides excellent hair and superb style, these parents are passing down so much love and sincerity to these little men and l.a. will be better for it. also, come on with those tiny squishy butt cheeks, right?!

eagle rock maternity session

these two. they mean the world to our tiny family. and they're becoming three.

we met art + reika one unassuming sunday evening at our tiny church plant in columbus, ohio five years ago. they walked into the old chapel and i thought "whoa, too cool. probably never gonna be friends with those cats." boy am i glad i was so wrong. A+R are two of the most genuine souls this earth has ever known. i had the pleasure of celebrating and photographing their fantastic backyard picnic wedding a few years back. fast forward to reika being one of three gal pals that dropped everything to drive across the country with me when we moved to l.a. Fast forward another six months and we get a phone call that art's job with jeni's ice cream was moving him to los angeles (i don't think i need to tell you the happy tears that flowed all over my lonely face after that call). fast forward another two years and here we are, each expecting a baby boy within months of each other.

leaving our community in ohio was so hard not only because the quality of those friendships was unlike any we'd experienced before, but because those people knew us. they grew with us. during transition, trial, ups and downs. we did life together on a daily basis. they helped us welcome ruth into the world and loved on us in a myriad of selfless, wonderful ways. to be able to continue that kind of friendship here in los angeles has been life-giving. 

we cannot wait to meet you, baby boy. any day now. and we cannot wait to love you, head to toe. you are one lucky little man to have the love of your mama and daddy. we have been the recipients of it for years and know the kindness of christ and the beauty of friendship because of them. you will be so very loved.