Mel’s Story

This is my family’s story in photos.

From the moment it began it was pure vulnerability.

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We love him sooo much we could explode.  What if we’re doing it all wrong?  What if we could be doing it better?  I just want to see my family happy.

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Sometimes wanting “happy” unknowingly shifts to wanting “perfect.”  A picture with everyone looking in the same direction and smiling, only one discernible chin for me.  Clothes that don’t clash and no food particles on his face.  Is that really so much to ask?

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Everyone else seems to have it “together.”  We’ve tried… and that picture, even when beautifully lit and composed, never really looks like us.  I’ve come to prefer the pictures that do.  I’ve come to an honest place where I put who we are above what I think others want to see.   I got tired of having to act perfect all the time, maybe you are too?  Maybe we’re longing to be our true selves.  Maybe, when we see others doing just that, it gives us permission to do the same.  Maybe you want these same kinds of pictures, perfectly imperfect in their joy.

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His childhood is going by fast.  I like that photography stops it for a moment and lets me hold it.

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We all think to take out a camera while we’re on vacation…

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… and during holidays, rich in family tradition.

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We’re also pretty good about documenting big milestones.

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Sometimes I’m there for really big moments for my clients.   I’ve photographed weddings, baptisms and birthdays.  The three births I have photographed changed me profoundly, each in their own way.

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Most of the time I’m called in for a date on the calendar with no special markings.  These days made of so-called ordinary moments lumped together make our daily lives.   Sometimes we stop and record it with a phone and post on social media.  But mostly, these days are long.  Mostly, these days come and go.

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Ordinary days are full of magic.  Sometimes a habit or ritual is so common that you don’t notice it until it’s gone, tossed to the side and outgrown, replaced by something new.

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Childhood is still happening!  Something unique and special is happening right now.   During all seasons of the year and during all seasons of childhood, I’m still photographing life with our tween.  Don’t wait for the time or season to be “right” to have photos taken.  Do it now.  Now is perfect.

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Life is happening everywhere.  Especially in the most familiar places.

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When we get together we can take some pics where everyone looks at the camera because, let’s face it, you’re freakin’ adorable.

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But if you give me your time and trust, we can also have the awkwardly endearing,

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the magically ethereal,

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the playful,

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and moments that are heartbreakingly authentic and universally understood.

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It is brave, so very brave, being seen.

If you have a little courage, I have a camera.  Your ordinary is more extraordinary than you realize.  Until someone shows it to you and it takes your breath away.

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Photographs in this section were taken by myself, fellow photographer and partner in all things, Sam Worthington, my doula Therese Hak-Kuhn (our son’s birth) and our friend Mosca Flint (our family pic).  And an unknown family member who picked up our camera at Christmas and took the sippy cup photo bomb pic.  Thank you, it’s the bomb.

And a very special thanks to our family, of which this section is uniquely composed, for allowing me to share our life and love in pictures here.