It’s that time of year in Texas when all the wildflowers are out. You can see beautiful landscapes of blue, red, and yellow popping up for a few weeks every April. If you’re a Texas native, you probably know that having your photo taken in the bluebonnets is a Texas tradition. I know I have images of myself in the bluebonnets when I was little.
I was recently in the Texas hill country visiting an antiques fair in Round Top (I love antiquing!), and I was able to sneak in a photo shoot for my two babies. Abby and Wilhelmina were very obliging despite the fact we had not one, but two separate sessions due to weather. As a baby photographer for babies with and without fur, it is nice to have built in baby models whenever I need them!
The image below is one of my favorites from our mini session with Wilhelmina. I love her little profile, and the fact that the wind is blowing her adorable curls. Just when I thought our shoot was over, my dad sat down next to her and wanted his portrait made with her too. Then my sister, Ted, and I all got our portrait made with Miss W in the bluebonnets. The Texas tradition lives on!
It’s been a while since I did a post in my “A Little Something About Me” series, so I thought I should get to it and share a little something else about me. If you read my “About” page on my site, you probably saw this:
“My idea of the perfect evening is a big family dinner with great wine and (slightly) drunken conversation.”
Yes, this is one of my favorite things to do, and it doesn’t have to be anything fancy either. Most of my favorite dinners usually include a home cooked meal at my parent’s house. As I said, nothing fancy, but sometimes it’s best we stay at home because we can get rowdy!
Things usually start out pretty tame, but after a cocktail and some wine, the volume level increases (mainly from my brother)! And what usually happens at this point? Well, if we are actually out at a restaurant/event/in public, someone inevitably throws a napkin in someone’s face. After the first napkin flies, chaos ensues with at least 9 other napkins sailing across the table. The best is when you think they have all been thrown and someone looks away for just a minute, only to catch one right in nose!
We also aren’t shy about doing this in public, especially at a seated dinner of some sort, and a few innocent bystanders have been hit. Most recently, someone threw a napkin at my brother and hit his girlfriend’s cocktail that splashed all over his shirt. So, what did he do? He proceeded to take off his shirt and put on my sister’s fitted, polka dot jacket instead. Thankfully, we were in a private room. Yes, I do have photos, but I’m thinking I should save them for a time when they’re really needed.
These images of myself, my sister, and my brother sum it up pretty well, even though I did select relatively “tame” images. I’m so thankful that I actually like everyone in my family and that everyone gets along with one another. My brother, sister, and I are at my parent’s house all the time. We all live so close together, which makes it so easy. Apparently my dad asked my mom if we (the kids) were ever not at their house!
Now you know a little something else about me. My idea of the perfect evening is filled with family, food, and maybe a cocktail (or two)!
I really love being a newborn photographer. There is nothing sweeter or more pure than a brand new baby with their soft skin and wonderful newborn scent. They are just starting to adjust to life on the outside when they come in for their newborn portraits. I love being able to soothe, shape, and hold these adorable babies… especially since Wilhelmina no longer fits in the “newborn” baby category at nine months. But, baby Harrison definitely qualifies!
Harrison came in recently for his newborn portraits, and he was such a joy to photograph. He took his time falling asleep (like most babies), but once he was ready he let me do whatever I wanted. With the occasional shushing and rocking, he would go right back to sleep. It’s so easy to forget this beautiful stage of newness from not only your baby, but to you as a parent. It’s amazing how much you don’t know no matter how much you prepare. I am still very new at this parent thing too, and I love being reminded that I’m not alone. The best part of being a parent, other than that beautiful baby, is learning together with them how to navigate the road ahead. Finding out they aren’t breakable and that a dog tongue to the face isn’t the end of the world.
Speaking of dog tongues… those fur babies you have before your baby (without fur) arrives are still your babies, and if I’m lucky, I get to photograph them together. That’s just what happened at Harrison’s newborn session. He brought his furry sister, Coco, with him. Coco was incredibly sweet with Harrison. She sat beside him and would lean over to sneak a few kisses here and there. I love this image of the two of them. She’s not quite sure about him yet… Is he staying?? But, what you don’t see is how protective and loving she is towards him. Harrison’s got a great furry sister looking out for him. Too bad he’s already bigger than she is!
I may have mentioned once or twice before that I’m a baby photographer. The word “baby” may mean something to one person, and something completely different to another. The word baby has a combined meaning for me in that it encompasses both babies with and without fur. Just because your baby wears a fur coat year round doesn’t make them any less your baby. I truly believe in that statement, and I love it when I have clients that do too.
One of my most recent fur babies in the studio was Duke. A beautiful lab mix with personality, sweetness, and one seriously photogenic gene. His dad brought him in for his session, and you could tell right off the bat that they are two peas in a pod. Duke goes everywhere with his dad, and you can tell they have a very special bond. Duke would get excited every time he would pose for the camera, and right after we got the shot, he would run over to his dad for a quick pet of approval.
Despite his incredible sweet and happy go lucky demeanor, Duke has a serious side. This image above is a bit serious with a bit of my ears are about to take flight! He has the most incredible ears. I love the different ways they would perk up and how high they would get. It almost looked like he was about to take off for a quick spin around the studio every time he perked them at my noises!
Towards the end of the session is always when my pups start to slow down. It’s amazing how much energy they use during these sessions jumping on and off of furniture and making the rounds sniffing every surface and prop. If I’m lucky, they have slowed down just enough to get this last image. It is one of my favorites because of the expression and connection I’m able to get with each fur baby. One of my favorites for sure… Looking right into this pup’s soulful eyes. I see a bit of exhaustion, but most of all, trust. I see this look with my own fur baby, and it makes me smile to see it with yours!
I love being a baby photographer. For the non-furry babies, I love their first year and seeing these adorable newborn babies grow up. It is definitely a perk I get to enjoy, and it’s amazing how fast they grow. I photographed Wyatt’s newborn session when he was just eleven days old, then again at seven months, and now at one year old. Babies do so much growing up in the first few months. If you blink you might miss it, which is why I love it when parents capture these playful, beautiful moments that are gone so quickly.
Although Wyatt is now a big boy, his sweet face hasn’t changed. Neither has his temperament – easy going and sweet as they come. I think I may have to introduce Miss W to him at his upcoming birthday party… Although, I’m not sure his mom, Margaret, nor I are ready for all that business. I say we give it about thirty years or so!
Wyatt recently came to visit for his one year photo shoot, which isn’t complete without a cake smash. Margaret got the best outfit for his shoot from Etsy. It was absolutely perfect! I was surprised at first that Wyatt didn’t go straight into the cake, but his dad, T.J., told me he doesn’t like to get dirty. When Wyatt would get too much cake on him, he would reach for his dad to help him out.
He definitely didn’t mind getting his dad dirty, and I love this outtake after his session. Poor dad had to catch a flight to Dallas right after our shoot and planned on leaving straight from my studio. I guess Wyatt had other plans!
I’ve been starting to give you a little insight into what makes me tick, and why I do what I do. In case you missed the last blog post titled “A Little Something About Me”, I am an intimate photographer for babies and fur babies. That is the what. Now here’s the why… I do what I do to celebrate the bold love a parent has for their baby (regardless if they have fur or not).
Why is this important? I am constantly reminded by how special each moment is with your baby when I look at my own. Yes, I have ones with and without fur. There are moments as a parent that only you have the wonderful fortune of seeing, and if you’re lucky you can capture them on the rare occasion.
My baby, Miss W, gives me the sweetest look when we are playing sometimes. It is always the same: she is lying on her back and she delicately moves her head to look at me. She gives me a smile – not a full smile, but a sweet little smile that says to me how much she loves me. This is something only a parent can appreciate of their child, and I was able to capture it the other day.
This is why I do what I do. I want to capture these special moments you share with your children. Those moments that when you look at it, you can say “that is my baby, and that is exactly how I see them”.
If you have been checking back on the blog recently, you may have noticed that I am changing things up a bit. I have been wanting to shift my work towards a more simplistic style that highlights the babies I photograph, and Baxter and Bella were some of my first pups to photograph in this new style.
I wish I had a behind the scenes video for this session because the personalities of Baxter and Bella are completely different. Baxter is still a puppy at just a year old, and Miss Bella is a bit more seasoned at eight years old. Despite the fact that Baxter’s nick name is Dennis the Menace (yes, he lives up to the name), I was able to wrangle him just long enough to get his portrait taken thanks to his mom, Jeannine. I’m sure Jeannine got just as much of a workout as I did during her pup’s session (which is why I always photograph in workout clothes and claim working as my “cardio”).
Miss Bella would sit perfectly for the camera (love when I get a pup like her!)… probably because it was more comfortable to sit on the sofa than be run over by Baxter! I love this shot of her. She really works this one, and to me it says, “I am the queen bee, and I deserve my own special sofa!”.
Mr. Baxter would run, run, run all over the studio. Running away from his mom trying to wrangle him, and occasionally jumping up to give Miss Bella a little nip so she might play with him. Pretty typically of most fur babies that come into my studio. But, I want everyone to leave with an image of their baby that really captures them as their parent sees them. Baxter may look calm in his image, but if you look closely, there’s a little mischief behind those eyes!
If you’re interested in working with me, I think we should get to know each other. I am a pet and newborn photographer, but that doesn’t tell you much does it? I’m going to give you a little insight into why I choose to photograph babies – both with and without fur. That is why I am doing a new blog series called “A Little Something About Me..” so we can become better acquainted. I’m going to tell you some things that I believe as well as some guilty pleasures of mine. Now let’s get started!
First things first… I believe dogs don’t become family pets just because you have a baby. My dog, Abby, didn’t become a family pet when my little girl was born… she became a big sister.
As a parent, I understand the unconditional love you have for your child regardless if they have fur or not. These are things only a parent can appreciate about their kids like the soft, delicious scent of Miss W’s skin, and the mystifying way Abby’s paws smell like freshly baked bread.
I love finding the intimate yet playful moments that celebrate the bold love parents have for their children by seeing them through their eyes.
My name is Kim Hartz, and I am an intimate photographer for babies and fur babies.