SUMMER BEACH PORTRAITS
In August, I had not wanted to let Summer end without posting a beach family portrait session. But, after a busy late-Summer/early-Fall wedding season, I find that Summer has indeed ended (some time ago!) and without the aspirational blog posting. Now it's a rush to post before Winter arrives!
The Jelks family portraits highlighted here were taken on the beaches near their home in Swanson, North Carolina, in early July this year. Swanson is part "North Carolina rural" and part "North Carolina resort." The nearby small towns and country vistas are picturesque Americana, while the coastal beaches and byways offer idyllic seaside landscapes. With so much to explore there photographically, I cannot wait to return!
Laura and Jessie wanted portraits to celebrate their growing family. While their new baby boy is a natural center of attention, I wanted to document the entire family -- mother, father, sister, brother -- all together and in small groupings. I usually like to start off with a formal portrait of the family together, continue with formal portraits of different subgroups, and finish up with fun relational portraits of the family interacting with one another.
I love the variety of images we created for Laura and Jessie. In each of the portraits, -- whether mother and child, father and child, mother and father and children -- you cannot help but feel the love and pride of family unique to those relationships. And, taken together, the group and subgroup portraits reveal much more about the love this family shares than any single portrait might.
The Jelks' family portraits were taken using only natural light in the late afternoon. I love photographing people and places at this time of the day as the light is soft and flattering. To enhance the variety of images, I experimented with different angles and backdrops, including the sand, the water, and the sky. Simplifying the background in each individual image keeps the focus on the family; while the variety of backgrounds, seen together, speaks of the complete beach experience.
For me, variety is all about the storytelling.
Congratulations, Laura and Jessie, on your growing family! And thanks for letting me share in your family's love.