Heather is an old co-worker and friend of mine, so when she reached out asking me if I would take a few photos of Victoria to celebrate her upcoming graduation I happily accepted. It had been quite awhile since Heather and I had seen each other and I was excited to catch up. I was equally as excited to finally to get to know the rest of her family–whom I have heard so much about over the last several years but never had the chance to meet.
At first, Victoria made it clear that she wasn’t so interested in having her picture taken, and she held on to her smile as best as she could. Even hugs and silly interactions from her brothers weren’t doing the trick. But then Heather suggested we turn on some music, and one dance party in the kitchen later Victoria was full of sparkle and smiles.
While I was there, I snapped a few portraits of Victoria’s brothers. Aaron and Nathaniel were total naturals and stepped in front of the camera like they were made for it.
Ethan, on the other hand was quite the goofball and had me laughing at his antics–and funny faces. BUT you’d never know it from his photos as he looks just as dapper his brothers.
While we’d hoped to go outside for a few family photos, the rain had us housebound. We made the best of it and everyone gathered around on the family couch and in the dining room.
As I was packing up to leave, I noticed Victoria sitting at the table looking out of the window with such natural happiness and peace. Heather shared that Victoria was in her favorite spot and I knew I had to break the camera back out and sneak a few more photographs.
I sent the gallery to Heather a few days ago and she replied “You captured Victoria’s spirit. That is powerful.” I was incredibly humbled by her response and almost reduced to tears. In that moment I thought, “This. This is my ‘Why’ as a photographer.” To preserve memories and document connections, that’s something that I always have on my mind when photographing. But to capture someone’s spirit—that IS powerful! I am so happy I was able to do that for such a wonderful family.
And to Victoria— Happy Graduation! I wish you nothing but the best as you begin the next step of your journey.