The end of the school year is quickly approaching and I will be forced to let go of another Senior model team, losing them once again to graduation. Fortunately though, I was able to squeeze in a dramatic cover worthy photoshoot at the Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm. What I loved the most about this photoshoot was that it was a family affair, mom sweetly holding my light stand in place and Dad gently tossing this beautiful skirt in the air for an little extra drama.
For this particular styled senior photoshoot I brought two looks, one drama and one that screamed Dutch and needed to be matched with Tulips. What is your dream senior photoshoot? I want to help you bring it to life!
I met Danielle for the first time in the office of my make up artist, Kelli Thomsen. I remember that she was wearing a t-shirt that stated specifcally "Jeep Hair, Don't Care," as she asked if she could ride with me to her senior photos so as not to mess up her hair. Instantly I was in love and my thoughts drifted to that song, American Girl, by Tom Petty as we chatted together, myself, her mom, and her awesome mom's best friend. You know the one, right?
"Well, she was an American girl
Raised on promises
That there was a little more to life somewhere else
After all it was a great big world"
and the Heartbreakers
Maybe it was the American flag she wanted to include in her photos. Maybe it was her fresh smile and shining blue eyes. Or Maybe it was her love for accounting, fishing, and jeeps. It could have been that we drove to take her senior photos at a location close to her heart. I look forward to seeing where life takes this young lady and I am hoping that she keeps her word and comes back to be my accountant some day...because everyone knows that most creatives, myself included, could always use a great accountant.
I have the soul of dancer however I am abysmally untrained so when I had the opportunity to take the high school senior photos of a ballerina my whole heart danced with excitement. I love incorporating the individuality and unique beauty of my seniors into their sessions.
We spent about 10 minutes of our session dancing....well she danced, this happy valley photographer took photos. Her cellular phone was set off to the side playing some beautiful classical tune inspiring this sweet ballerina, Emma to dance. Her mom shared with me that this is a hobby of hers, putting on her cell phone and dancing. Isn't it a beautiful one?
Dancing is like dreaming with your feet - Contanze
Another thing I loved about this senior photo sessions is that I get to capture so many different personality shots. I love seeing so many different smiles and expression emerge from my seniors.
Congratulations Emma! June is just around the corner. I can not wait to see what you do next and can not I wait to purchase tickets for your next ballet.
Often I am asked by both customers and other photographers how and why I specialize in high school senior photography. Many times I have heard, "Especially girls! They are so much drama." Hmmm....I am not sure about that drama thing. Possibly I have just been super, fantastically lucky to have had only clients that inspire me to do my best, try new things, and like to have fun. How lucky am I? My time with my girls truly makes my heart sing and honestly, who doesn't want their heart to sing all the time? I know I do.
In all seriousness though, let's talk senior photos. For example, let's take mine. Now I do not want to age myself so I will not go into too many details but I will reveal that wore a navy blue tennis sweater....which was very much in style that year...I think??? Whatever, okay so I wasn't very cool. I am getting of track here. The whole point of this blogpost is that my high school senior photo experience left me feeling self conscious, creeped out, and embarrassed. Thanks for choosing the weird, lonely photographer man in his 50's to take my photos, Mom. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) I am not saying that he was at all inappropriate or asked me to do anything out of the ordinary. I am simply saying that I did not feel comfortable and all of the photos reflect my uncomfortable feelings. Bummer...senior photos happen only once.
I love watching my girls transform from unsure to confident. To their unique selves in front of the camera. I try my best to keep my sessions light and fun. I spend the extra time getting to know each and every kiddo because I really do care that they enjoy their photo session. It is important, it happens only once, and it should reflect your real smile. It should be fun and make you feel beautiful.
High school senior sessions are one of my favorites. I love getting to know and spend so much time one on one with each of my clients. I sit with them and chat during their hair and makeup session finding out all of the amazing things they have planned for the future. Rarely do I get the opportunity to spend so much time with my clients.
Sometimes when I am photographing a high school senior a different personality emerges with each costume change. It is so interesting to watch the process from behind my camera.
This Sherwood high school senior photo session at Happy Valley Park and ended it in Portland. This particular high school senior started out our session as the goofy, sometime clumsy girl next store. Always ready to laugh and smile sheepishly around turn while I took for photos. Some how by the end of the day she had morphed into a fashion model right before me eyes. I loved every moment of your session Audrey and all of the personalities that emerged.
This Clackamas High School Senior knew exactly what she wanted for her Senior photos right down to the little details. She has a great sense of style which must run in the family because her Mom looked perfectly put together too. She even chose the perfect eye make up to bring out her gorgeous eyes.
We choose two locations for this photoshoot, one dreamy and romantic and the other a field of sunshine. Both reflect her bubbly and glamorous personality perfectly!
I love my job so much! It is so much fun to get to know my Seniors and help them truly shine in their photographs.
I love chatting with them during our hair and makeup session and learning what makes them laugh and their plans for the future. It truly makes a difference in my photographs that they trust me and know they look amazing.
It's Senior Portrait time and I am loving it! One of the most common questions I get asked is what should I wear?
First of all, I like to suggest bringing at least 3 complete outfits and by complete I mean shoes, hats, sunglasses, jewelry, etc. It's okay to bring a lot. We can always scale back. All of the details matter.
Make sure all of your clothing is pressed and hanging. Do not bunch it all up in your backpack. We don't want to remember your wrinkles forever. Lol.
This year I am offering professional make up with all of my sessions. It really makes a difference to have a professional that knows what kind of make up looks the best on camera applying it for you. My talented make up artist, Kelli Thomsen, was just featured in Oregon Bride. How exciting! She really knows how to do it all. Whether you like a glam look or something more natural, we've got you covered.
I love to spend my time chatting with you while you are getting your makeup done. Getting to know my clients really helps you feel relaxed and comfortable with me. If you are comfortable and confident you will really shine in your photographs. That's what I want. I want you to be pampered, confident, and to feel really beautiful. Your photos will be fantastic!
Would you like more styling tips? Enter your email information for a link to my Style Guide.
This is the first year I put together a senior model team. They were such a fun group of girls and from different local area high schools. I was so impressed by how quickly they were having fun, joking, and laughing with each other. Hooray for Class of 2018!
We started our day off at Sublime Clothing boutique in Happy Valley. We shopped the boutique for a couple of hours trying on different looks. We finally decided on one daytime and one evening. Styling was completed by Rose Jubb, professional wardrobe stylist.
Then we headed over to Kelli Thomsen's SE Portland studio to complete the looks with hair and makeup. Our theme for our shoot was Boho Chic. She exceeded my expectations for high school senior styling with her inspiration looks. The girls excitedly picked them out. Each look was only complete with fake eyelashes a must have for every 70's inspired photo shoot.
Once hair and makeup was completed and these Clackamas and Sherwood High School senior girls were dressed in their first look. Our first stop was a park in SE Portland. The park could not have been a more beautiful setting and complimented our daytime look beautifully.
Next we headed off to Oregon City. The downtown area is so cute. I had researched a couple of alleys that are perfect for that urban look if you are not wanting to go all the way downtown Portland. I can't image 4 more perfect models for my team. I can not wait to work more with all of you!
Lori Best - mother, wife, and photographer.