A Minute In the Life – Pregnancy Announcement Style

I photographed Shannon and Ian over three years ago in celebration of their engagement and upcoming wedding. Every single time I photograph an engagement session or a wedding, deep down inside I’m always hoping I get that future call back for a maternity or newborn session. Obviously there are some times when the universe has different plans which is totally okay but really, getting to document couples as they enter new chapters in their lives and then having the opportunity to document them again as they start brand new ones later is such a privilege. It’s an honor to be included and trusted with what will eventually be their fondest memories as a family.

When Shannon contacted me with the news I was over the moon. These two have amazing chemistry together and it’s no doubt that will be a wonderful gift towards their journey in parenting. Those of us with kids know how important it is to have that in a partner and how grateful we are (or at least should be) when we have it. These two are going to make an amazing team and I was so excited to help them create an announcement that would let the world know that one of their dreams was coming true.

Enjoy this sweet Photo Story shot by Amanda Ballard and let us know what you think in the comments! And don’t forget, if you have a special announcement, story, milestone or memory that you want us to tell through photographs send us an e-mail today!

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Lucky Elephant Photography serving Broward County South Florida. Specializing in photography that tells a story.

Story Sessions with Lucky Elephant Photography

Somewhere along the lines I lost touch of my true passion in photographing people in what I thought were the technicalities of portrait photography. The things I thought I had to do in order to gain respect or be looked at like I knew what I was doing. I spent a lot of time and investment in learning poses and techniques for setting up people to look their best. Positioning them nicely in a park or a beach. I even learned studio posing, for what I thought I needed. Telling my clients to, “Say Cheese!” or “Open your eyes at the count of 3!” wasn’t something I ever felt proud of doing but it’s what I thought I had to do to get ‘that shot’. This is the traditional way of portrait photography and it’s the way most people think it has to be. It’s the way I thought it had to be and what I thought was the ‘must do’ to be a professional family photographer.

Then I had an epiphany one night while trying to select three of my favorite photographs of my daughter for a frame. Suddenly it clicked in my head and I realized that posing and forced smiles or fake emotions aren’t present in any of them. Most of them are beautifully composed, yes, but they are all genuine real moments. All my favorite pictures of my own family and of others’ families have always been the candid ones too. Once this dawned on me I instantly realized why I’ve had a hard time promoting this business. I didn’t believe in what I was doing. I was stoked to be taking pictures of people and wanted to keep doing it but the people in the frames weren’t behaving naturally and it always felt off to me. Who just stands in the middle of a field with their family, all facing the same way, arm to arm, smiling in a certain direction instead of at each other? The answer is no one. It wasn’t what I loved in my heart. I didn’t feel like I was capturing real people and that’s what makes my heart sing. That’s what fuels me to work so hard. I couldn’t bare to take more time away from my family while posing others in ways they would never naturally be.

Story Photography by Lucky Elephant Photography

While I love each one of my clients and the experiences we’ve had shooting, a whole lot of me wishes I hadn’t been so worried with poses and techniques, backgrounds, baskets and props. I wish I could have sat down with my clients, gotten to know them a little better, then accompany them on an adventure or spend a day in their home, capturing real moments between each other, telling their individual unique story.

To me, it’s not the nice park setting with the pretty trees. It’s not making sure to stand in the direction of the wind so that your hair won’t fall in your face when posing out on the beach.  It’s not the perfect smiles or the fake laughs. It’s not wrapping up newborns and setting them in buckets. It’s not jingling bells so babes will look at the camera. It’s not about props and backdrops. It’s about the love and the connection – and I let the poses and the technicalities get in the way of that.

To me, it’s about the way a child looks at her mother, or the way a daughter’s hand can fit inside of her father’s just so. It’s about the miracle of birth or joining hands in marriage. It’s about a first trip to the zoo, children wide eyed with wonder. It’s about a carnival date between two lovers, sharing funnel cakes and kisses. It’s about celebrations and parties, exploring and adventures, days spent at home and evening walks on the beach. It’s about tears over spilled milk. It’s about the real moments. Most importantly, it’s about the small little things that we don’t think to get captured but end up missing the most over the years.

Story Photography by Lucky Elephant Photography

 

The standard posed portrait is the way people think it’s supposed to be, the way they think it has to be. Well I’m here to break the tradition of the standard portraits. I’ve done them and I’ve not done them and now I know I don’t need them. I want to capture real genuine moments. I want to create photographs that will become family treasures. I want people to look at my images and be able to feel something. Those small special moments or special occasions that time takes away too quickly, I want to preserve them forever and that is exactly what we are doing here now. We are telling real life stories one beautiful album at a time.

 

If you’re interested in having your family’s memories photographed by us send a message via the Book a Shoot page or call and leave a message at (954) 900-9927. Because I am super duper excited about this change, we are currently offering session discounts for a limited amount of time if you let us come along and capture something super fun and unique! Let’s chat!

Those of you that read along or that continue to work with us, thank you!

Much Love,
Amanda Ballard
Owner of Lucky Elephant Photography

 

Richard and Whitney {Engagement Session}

Richard and Whitney are two very cool, down to earth people. If you get the pleasure of spending more than a couple minutes with them you can see they are more than just lovers, but best friends. Most anything he says is guaranteed to make her laugh and the way he looks at her is just perfect. Whitney and I got to spent a lot of time talking about her family and their upcoming destination wedding out of the country!! How is amazing is that?

Their love for each other is just a small part of why this session was so special to me. It was the end of an era for Lucky Elephant Photography but the start of something new. You can start to see bits and pieces of the change if you snoop around our website but that’s all I’m saying for now. Get excited and keep your eyes out for a future blog post because this one is all about Whitney and Richard!

All the moments spent with these two were a breeze and fun! Here are a few of their favorite pictures from their engagement session.

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Lisa and Donny {Engagement Session}

Lisa and Donny were our first engagement session of 2015. An engagement session is meant to capture and celebrate the love between two people. They are a wonderful and fun way to start off any wedding story! We shot at my favorite of our exclusive parks and it was such a pleasure. The lighting was great, the weather was perfect and the two of them were super cute with great chemistry to boot. I really really really can’t wait to capture the rest of their wedding day story in October! They are going to love their photographic heirlooms. Here are just a couple of our favorite digitals from the session!

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Chelsey & Corey {Beach Elopement}

From the moment Chelsey contacted me about her and Corey’s beach elopement I was ALL ON BOARD. I mean, common’.. I was getting chosen to capture something so intimate and romantic, in such a beautiful location with beautiful people! When I arrived at the hotel I found out that Corey was getting ready at a separate location and Chelsey’s sister, Courtney, was taking pictures there. Suddenly it clicked in my head and I realized her sister is none other than professional photographer Courtney Ortiz. Talk about NO PRESSURE… haha, yea right! Once Chels was finished getting ready we headed down to the beach to take a few pictures before she saw Corey at their ceremony.. which couldn’t have been more perfect. They lit unity torches and said their “I do”s in a ring of seashells, with nothing but us, the sand and the sea to witness it. Perfection! Here are a few sneak peeks for you all!

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Shannon and Ian {Engagement Session}

Warning!! These guys are almost too cute to handle, and that’s coming from me – a romantic! This session was a blast. This couple was spontaneous, silly, easy-going and not to mention totally photogenic. If the sun hadn’t gone down I might not have ever stopped shooting. Editing this session was a lot of fun too. Their happiness is contagious.. Just check out some* of these pictures from their session! If you don’t smile once you’re doing it wrong. 😉

*Like I said, I got carried away! <3

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Carmen & Matt {Engagement Session}

I was SO excited for this day! I’ve known Carmen since highschool and was so happy for her when I found out she was getting engaged (I love love!)! I was even happier when she asked if I could take their pictures. When I showed up at their house they had coffee and breakfast waiting for me. How nice is that?! For this session we took a walk around their housing complex which gave us a lot of beautiful, different options. Those are my favorite kind of locations, ones that mean something to my subjects and will be completely unique from others. It was a great time. Matt battled spiders for us. We got worried when we heard the water sprinklers turning on around us – and then were relieved when they turned back off. Also, most importantly, I got to meet their dog, Toby. Look at his bowtie!! Enjoy these (few) from our session! <3

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Nicole and Bud {Couple’s Holiday Session}

Nicole and Bud are two of my closest friends so it was with great pleasure that I was able to take their pictures in a more serious, professional light. If anyone knows Bud in real life, they would be just as impressed as I was at how great he was in front of the camera. Seriously, he was giving off a very Fabio-like vibe anytime he wasn’t wrestling with Nicole, or licking Nicole’s face, or performing any of his general Bud-like actions.. hehe. I had such a fun time with them both and am looking forward to more of these as plans for headshots for Nicole are in the works! Here are some (a lot) sneak peeks from their session. I couldn’t pick just a few.. I always forget how much I love shooting couples until I shoot couples. <3

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