It took me years to realize that the way my mind works during portrait creation made for an intriguing experience for my clients. I didn’t grow up with portrait traditions, so I had no idea how it was typically done. I just have my eyes wide open to create something amazing for every single client who trusts me to do just that for them. I’m relentless about making that happen and squeezing the best out of every single session, regardless of the obstacles (which there are on every single session). Clients crack up while I’m climbing in streams, straddling fences in muck boots, laying in pastures full of you know what, squeezing inside goals… Who knew watching a crazy photographer do whatever it takes to bring the vision to life would make portrait creation a fun time? I joke that I’m helping to bring men around to love portrait creation as well! Then when a husband contacts me to purchase a gift of portraits for his wife, for a 2nd time, that tells me I’m hitting the mark!
I met the McGrews a few years ago when Greg contacted me to surprise Becky with a newborn portrait session in their home. They were celebrating the arrival of precious Sawyer in their family and the healing in their marriage by the hand of God. So when Greg contacted me again to mark down the blessing of his family on their farm, I was eyes wide open for the potential to create in meaningful ways to them.
We were all over the farm finding favorite spots and interesting nooks which always abound on a farm! The average farmer is often taken aback by the beauty of his property, but is also consistently slightly overwhelmed by the amount of work to manage a property that requires daily hours poured into it. Little farmers like Sawyer are mostly just busy climbing everything in sight while the older kids wrangle and tend to the animals!
Greg loves tractors. It’s his hobby and it’s his business. As we walked the farm I saw the antique tractor pictured in the first family portrait and I mentioned I’d love to create with that, but didn’t want it to be a hassle. Greg and Grady jumped into action to pull out the tractor. I am always amazed by the ease with which farm kids operate heavy machinery. Grady was a boss in that thing!
I’ve noticed a common thread to so many of my families, especially my farming families: an incredible graciousness to trust my vision and get all hands on deck to help make the magic happen.
Audrey, Grady and Keagan got involved in the cattle showing world a few years ago. They very quickly fell in love and they travel all over to show their prized heifers! Sawyer, at his tender age of 3, was even allowed to step in the ring once, unofficially! He cannot wait for his turn to as he hopes “show a blue cow Daddy!” These kids take a lot of pride in their show animals and work hard to keep their heifers and pigs fed, cleaned and trained for the show ring.
Creating on farms is always a favorite of mine…for exactly what you see here. The unparalleled beauty of wide open spaces, being worked by the hands of the family, to produce what we all require for life is a beautiful thing.
My heart was stopped by this piece of Sawyer below…just a three year old little farmer in the making, contemplating farm life while he munches on his pb&j…doesn’t get any more precious than this!
Greg and Becky were a dynamic duo to help make all the portraits you see here happen. They wrangled a lot of details to mark down this fleeting and crazily beautiful time in their life. They are very aware of God’s hand of blessing on their life and are eager to mark that down in ways that will make them smile all the days of their life!
McGrews, may you always sit under the stars and count your blessings all the days of your life! And remember with great laughter when the heifers got loose during your session to create just a bit of the crazy chaos so typical of family life!