Every new photo client of mine is an excitement and an instant challenge (in a good way!) for me to solve. I want to be sure that each session is unique and that it complements each client’s personality as well as that of their dogs. So when some very dear friends of mine came to me with the idea for a winter photoshoot in the forest with their two “babies”, I was overjoyed. How wonderful to have some of my closest friends value my time and passion for photography enough to book and plan a session with me! The weeks prior to this session were spent exchanging outfit ideas, watching the weather forecast like a hawk to make sure we had the perfect day, and my receiving photos of the dogs practicing their posing as well as photos of the location just to help me pre-visualize. I absolutely love this kind of client involvement! Soon enough, the day had arrived!
Let’s just say that no matter how much planning goes into a session, sometimes things can and definitely will go wrong. Obviously the snow and cold bring complications in an of themselves. Seeing that the location for the photos was off-road quite a bit, we needed to ride the Kubota out across the back fields of Matt’s parent’s property and into the woods. Well wouldn’t you know, the Kubota picked this very day not to start. Just when we thought we’d have to settle for a less picturesque spot, Matt's mom, Teresa, came to the rescue with some jumper cables! We piled myself, my lovely assistant Emma, Matt, Alex, and Kermit onto the vehicle and road off with Sterling running alongside.
As soon as we arrived, my brain immediately began racing with possibility at such a beautiful scene! The bare pine trees were covered with just the perfect dusting of snow, as it continued to fall all around. The sun which had previously been hidden behind clouds started to peak through the small cracks in the thick woods as well. Sterling, the somewhat high strung, but absolutely beautiful Weimaraner galloped around, nose to the ground, exploring his new surroundings. His bright blue eyes matched so perfectly with the cool snowy backdrop. Little Kermit was as expected quite chilly, and assumed his natural place in the warmth of Matt's arms.
Although it was a tad difficult to calm Sterling and grab his attention, I did catch it for a few moments which was all I needed! 1/200 of a second is not too much to ask even from the most playful of dogs. I was so thrilled to capture the happiness of this little family in such a beautiful environment. After a few group photos, I let both the dogs and their owners have a little break and worked with only Matt and Alex. I brought them out of the thick woods a bit and into the sun which was really making an appearance at this point. The snowflakes were also more visible as they fell around Matt and Alex. I’m sure they were quite amused with my constant exclamations of, “Omg the snow is falling, this is so perfect!” Even though I know that both guys were getting quite cold, they did so well going along with all of my ideas, and I can’t thank them enough for their cooperation.
After a few group photos, I let both the dogs and their owners have a little break from each other and worked with only Matt and Alex. I brought them out of the thick woods a bit and into the sun which was really making an appearance at this point. The snowflakes were also more visible as they fell around Matt and Alex. I’m sure they were quite amused with my constant exclamations of, “Omg the snow is falling, this is so perfect!” Even though I know that both guys were getting quite cold, they did so well going along with all of my ideas, and I can’t thank them enough for their cooperation.
I captured a few more “action” shots of Sterling (as well as one silly scrunchy face) and contented, snuggly shots of Kermit and ended the session so that everyone could get back to some warmth! Luckily, though, I was able to capture a closing shot of Sterling galloping alongside the Kubota on the way back as well.
Seriously, the biggest thank you ever to Matt, Alex, and my assistant Emma for helping me make this session so great! The cold and dampness of winter can often bring out the worst in people, but you all stayed so incredibly positive throughout this entire session. It makes me sad to think that these two will be leaving to move down South at the end of the year, but it also makes me so glad that I was able to capture this stage and moment in their lives - the moment before a transition away from home. Matt and Alex, I hope you can always look back on these photos and remember the beauty of this area and these irreplaceable moments of togetherness. I love you, will miss you, and wish you the best possible life moving forward!