It’s taken me a while to figure out exactly what it was that I really wanted to capture when photographing an expectant family. There’s the glowing mother with her beautiful round belly and the nervous and excited new dad who has no idea what to do with his hands and had to ask his wife, “Wait, what are maternity photos?” before our session. But beyond those things, there’s a deep and unwavering love. There’s the love of the couple who has spent so much time planning for baby that they might not have had a real conversation about anything other than which monitor to buy in months. There’s the love of a mother who is just starting on her journey to loving someone more than she ever knew her heart could handle. And the love of a man who looks at his wife in a way that he’s never seen her before – knowing the enormity of what she is doing for their child and watching her become a mother. The pictures of the belly matter a lot. But what matters most to me is this love story.
Christen and Ryan joined me at Malabar Farm in Lucas, OH, last month to share their love story with each other while I photographed this amazing time in their lives. They sat down on a blanket and talked to each other – something they said they hadn’t had a chance to really do in a long time. They told each other the story of how they got here, why they are still so deeply in love, and how much that love grows every day as their baby grows. They talked about the future, what they wished for their little one, and what they wanted their baby to remember about their love story. They held each other tight and I could tell that sometimes they didn’t want to let go. I didn’t hear them speaking to each other as I moved slowly around them with my camera, but I knew that they were happy and that the photos we were making were going to capture the details of their love for each other. It was perfect.
Christen and Ryan, I am so thankful to you both for choosing me to document this adventure for you and for going along with my somewhat unconventional approach to your session! I loved meeting you and I’m anxiously awaiting your little one’s arrival when you find out the next chapter of your story.