Several months ago I had the opportunity to photograph a day in the life of Chris Janson and family at their farm here in Franklin, TN, then later that evening backstage before his performances at the Grand Ole Opry. Kelly and Chris Janson were kind and gracious hosts as we spent all day on their land, in their home and in their dressing room at the Opry getting a peek inside their life as country music artist and manager juggling celebrity life with real life.
Watching Chris and his son Jesse fish together reminded me of something my husband has always told me about his time hunting with our son…”The outdoor lifestyle is never just about the activity. So many real and meaningful conversations about life happen around a pond, in a field and in the woods.” It was clear that his outdoor experiences greatly influence and feed his creativity as an artist. It was a pleasure to see more of his story through my lens.
Don’t miss the behind the scenes video of our shoot on the Janson farm at the end of this post. Such Good Vibes and a fun day on the job! Thanks to the fine folks at Covey Rise for the assignment. It’s a privilege to have my images in such a beautiful publication.
Here’s a Behind The Scenes video from our cover story shoot at the Janson family farm in Franklin, TN.
Breanne and I met years ago in Birmingham. She was a pilates participant in my classes there and also babysat my kids while she was in pharmacy school. So, when she contacted me to photograph her newborn baby boy at their home in Chattanooga, of course it was an absolute “yes”! Plus, who doesn’t love a road trip to charming Chattanooga? Here’s some of my favorite images from our morning together at their home perched on Lookout Mountain.
My daughter Olivia and I volunteer for Saddle Up, a therapeutic horseback riding program for kids with disabilities, just down the road from our neighborhood. We’ve seen first hand how caring for the horses and riding soothes these kids and brings them so much joy. It’s truly an amazing place that gives so much to families in our community.
It was an absolutely perfect first day of June on the farm with sunshine, blue skies, fluffy clouds and nice breezes. I won’t share all of the jumpers, because this blog post would be too long; but I will share an overview of this wonderful event and the winning jumper, David Jennings, owner of Full Circle Farm Jumpers here in Franklin, and his horse Caddie R. Congratulations! If you are in Nashville and have never attended this event, I highly recommend putting it on your calendar for next year. It’s a great way to spend a Saturday with the family!
Jane Elizabeth and Taylor’s Rehearsal Dinner started with family portraits in the Elyton Hotel’s gorgeous lobby (I’m a little obsessed with its blue walls.) Then, champagne and a sunset view of Birmingham at Moon Shine, the rooftop lounge at the top of the Elyton. Everyone enjoyed a delicious, candlit dinner seated at tables with monogrammed napkins and beautiful florals at Café DuPont. We left with full stomachs and full hearts. Guests parted with a monogrammed gift box of roasted pecans from the groom’s family ranch in Arkansas.
I always get asked the question, “What should I wear for my Engagement Session?” and my answer is always a long, solid-color fluid dress, heels and classic jewelry — estate or family pieces if you have them. Long dresses are very feminine. They catch the wind and add beautiful movement when you walk. That movement adds so much interest to your images. And, the fit of your dress should compliment your figure and show off your shape. If an outfit off the rack needs to be altered to fit you well, then do it to look your best. The reason we love so many celebrities’ outfits is that they are custom made to fit their bodies. My favorite silhouettes? It’s no secret that I absolutely LOVE a one-shoulder dress. It’s a hint of sexy, but classy at the same time. I also love simple slip dresses and wraps that accent your waist.
When choosing a dress, keep in mind that solid fabrics are best, because prints and patterns can be trendy and distracting unless they are tiny florals or classic patterns like stripes or checks. Plus, so many trendy outfits can date your images very quickly. Same goes for big, chunky accessories. Choose simple and delicate instead. I love heirloom, estate pieces that connect you to your family and give just enough sparkle. Ask your grandmother if you can borrow her pearl and diamond earrings, or your mother her diamond necklace. If your location makes it a little hard to walk in heels, you can take them off. Holding your shoes as you walk gives the images a more relaxed feel (even though you are dressed up) and also gives you something to do with your hands.
For a second, more casual outfit, well-fitting jeans with heels and a dressy blouse or a tailored jumpsuit, is what I recommend. Both are always a win.
So, to sum it up in a few words…solid, flowy, delicate feminine, and classic with a just hint of sexy and a touch of tailored. If every piece you choose to wear for your session can be summed up in those words then you’ve nailed it and your images will be beautiful and timeless.
Be looking for my next post, which will be a Q&A with Walton’s Jewelry on how to confidently shop for and choose estate jewelry and antique engagement rings.
It’s always a pleasure to shoot for The YMCA of Middle Tennessee. This Ad Campaign was photographed at the Donelson location last summer to promote their summer swim program. Here’s a few ads rolling out now, plus some of my other favorite images from the shoot…
It’s always a pleasure to shoot for The YMCA of Middle Tennessee. This Ad Campaign was photographed at the Brentwood YMCA location last fall to promote their youth sports programs. Here’s a few images rolling out in their advertising now…