Monday, August 24, 2009

The Photo Shoot That Almost Wasn't.

Every time Ashley visits I am sure to do two things. First, I personally take loads and loads of pictures. I have to make up for all the times in-between visits that I do not have pictures. Second, you can be sure I will schedule a family photo. Sometimes, I plan it for Portrait Innovations, my favorite photography "shop." Sometimes, I round up my favorite part-time photographer, Crystal Lamar. Crystal is a friend-teacher-photog-mom-florist-fellow crafter-galore. The first wedding she ever did was on June 25, 2005 (our wedding). Nowadays she is in high demand, but I still can talk her into spending a day in Auburn to take some pics and eat at Niffer's!
This time, however, we were trying something different. A few months back I stumbled upon this blog. Immediately I was in love. I loved the way that she capture kids and families--really captured them. I could see she was not just a photographer, but an artist and I dreamed of one day being able to afford her. Then one day, she posted a contest. Email her in 250 words or less why you or someone you know deserved a free photo shoot with her and a free CD with all the pics she takes of you. I was so excited I could have screamed, but I was at work, so I didn't.
The sister in me, however, would not let me write to Grethel and tell her why I deserved the photo shoot. As soon as I opened the "compose new mail" screen, my fingers started typing away before my mind could object. My brother, Danny and his wonderful family deserved the photo shoot. The are loving and kind and they have three gorgeous and quite photogenic little boys. I do not think they have ever had a family photo. On top of that, they have el numero quatro on the way. A little girl. Finally. What better baby present to give than a photo shoot with this amazing artist???
Weeks went by and I forgot about the contest. Grethel is quite popular, so I was pretty sure the competition was fierce. Then, one day, I opened the email that told me that I had won. Or rather, Danny had won. She loved the story and could not wait for baby #4 to get here so that she could take their pictures. I. Was. So. Excited.
What could make that even better???? Since I wrote the winning letter, I too was rewarded. I got $150.00 credit to GVE Photography. SCORE.
So, early this month we headed up to Birmingham on a Wednesday morning for our late afternoon shoot with GVE. Although MeMe and Hoppy were not home, we were going to get ready at their house and then head over to the Old Town Helena Park for our session.
We were going to all get ready in color-coordinated clothing, brush our pearly whites, comb our perfect hair and frolic in the meadow while GVE took ge-or-geous pictures of our happy family. Right?? RIGHT? Um, negative.
We were late leaving Auburn, so I agreed to let everyone just take their clothes and we would get ready at MeMe and Hoppy's, shower and all. On the way up, Emma Kate refused to nap. We got stuck in roadwork in Clanton and it pushed us back an hour. When we did get to MeMe and Hoppy's we had an hour fight on whether Ashley needed a shower. I won the argument and in the shower she went, with only 30 minutes left until we needed to leave. Emma Kate was still a wild child and Mike forgot his belt in Auburn. When Ashley got out of the shower, we realized that MeMe had taken her hair dyer on her trip. Mike realized he forgot his razor and had a 2-day-old shadow on his face. Emma Kate spilled juice on my white top. Ashley decided to do her own make-up. I forgot my make-up brushes and attempted to apply it with smashed up toilet paper. GREAT. We were going to waste a perfectly good session with the photographer of my dreams.
I was devastated. Mike was grouchy. Ashley was sulky. Emma Kate was exhausted. We were in for a disaster. Right? RIGHT?
Nope, somehow GVE got some pretty great shots of us. Especially the girls. She captured Emma Kate's personality. She captured the way the girls adore one another. She even captured the way this non-traditional family loves each other, even on the bad days. I love them and now my only problem is staying in budget!!
This is just a sampling of the 60+ pictures I have to choose from!!

Little Baby Girl Thompson will be here on Thursday and I cannot wait for GVE to work her magic with them!!!


Marsha said...

So cool

The Moates Family said...

Those pics are gorgeous!

Grethel said...

Amy, I had no idea of everything that you went through for the shoot!.. I'm so happy you liked them so much and reading your post really made me all teary.. Thank you for letting me be part of your evening!!
ps. I saw a bunch of hits to my blog from here so I had to come and see what it was.. ;)

Tracy Pearson said...

Ok so I stumbled on your blog after coming to send you an email on facebook about something totally urelated..I am now teary reading this one...that is really awesome all around-and the pics are so stinkin cute!!