country photography

Newborn Portraits

Baby Sawyer and His Big Brother | Niagara County Lifestyle Newborn Photographer

Being a big brother is pretty serious business. That’s the number one lesson I learned from four-year-old Hunter after photographing his baby brother Sawyer’s lifestyle newborn session last June.

I had the pleasure of working with Hunter and his family last spring, shooting his mom’s maternity session on their beautiful country property in rural Niagara County. Normally when working with a family more than once, we would select a different location for each session; but in this case, their property was so beautiful and with so much variety that I was happy to come back and explore a bit more.

We started with a few photos inside, and immediately it was quite clear that Hunter had this whole big brother thing down. He held Sawyer like a champ, and even though he was a typical four-year-old with crazy four-year-old energy, he was gentle and calm when near the little guy. At one point we decided to wrap Sawyer up in his Mom’s gorgeous Free People scarf and let him and Hunter snuggle in for a few photos on the floor. While I shot, Hunter proceeded to show me what he would do if anyone ever messed with his little brother- brandish his (imaginary) Wolverine claws!

Taking newborn photos outside can be hit or miss, but in this case the weather was beautiful and warm, so we decided to give it a go. Just the week beforehand, Hunter and Sawyer’s mom Sara had found a beautiful little wooden footbridge in the woods near her property that was the perfect size for a teepee! On the way back to the house we stopped to say hi to the horse who had just come to live with them.

Walking around their property, I couldn’t get over what a perfect paradise for little boys they had. As Sawyer grows, he’s going to have a blast exploring his little world- with big brother Hunter by his side, of course.

Maternity Portraits

Country Maternity Session | Niagara County Maternity Photographer

A very wise person once said "Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got til it's gone?" I'm finding lately that this sentiment applies perfectly to the small country town in Niagara County where I spent a good portion of my childhood. It's one of those places where the cows outnumber people, where the town literally has one traffic light. We moved there when I was ten, and having come from a relatively suburban town, it was quite a culture shock. I never quite got my bearings, and couldn't WAIT to get out of dodge, to move to a place with sidewalks and traffic lights!  But the funny thing is, the longer I'm away the more I miss some of the little things about living in the country: rolling fields, huge expanses of sky, old country houses and the fact that owning a barn or tractor isn't out of the ordinary. As a now-suburbanite, I still haven't figured out what I'm supposed to do with tree trimmings and brush (no burn piles allowed in the 'burbs!). And as a photographer, I find lately that I'm looking at the beauty of the area with a whole new appreciation.

When I had the chance to work with a former classmate who still lives in the area on her maternity session, I jumped at the opportunity. I was happy to come to her home in Niagara County, and as she described her property - a barn, fields, chickens- my excitement grew. We don't see chickens that often in the 'burbs!

Well the chickens weren't very cooperative that day, but everything else about this session was wonderful. Sara, her husband Steve and four year old Hunter were so laid back, patient and fun, and I loved photographing them all around their beautiful property. Hunter has an amazing knowledge of all things Star Wars - and since I'm a big fan too, we definitely had a lot to talk about. He introduced me to his chickens (who all have names - Stormtrooper, Darth Vadar...), insisted on posing like Han Solo with his blaster, and showed off his amazing tractor-driving skills. This country boy is going to be one amazing big brother.

They say you can't go home again, but I sure love to visit. For someone who couldn't wait to leave, it's funny that I'm finding inspiration once again in the area. Niagara County, I hope I get to come back often and photograph your beautiful surroundings and even lovelier families!

Hunter, I mean Han Solo!

Hunter, I mean Han Solo!

"What's the point in having chickens if you can't take cute photos with them???"

"What's the point in having chickens if you can't take cute photos with them???"