I photograph High School seniors a lot. In fact, I mostly photograph High School seniors. When people ask what I like to photograph best, I tell them that because people are so different, I really enjoy many different shoots, as each one has it’s own special feeling to it. However, with that said…I really love High School seniors. Why? Let me tell you about it!
Every senior shoot is an adventure. When I originally talk with a mom on the phone the question is always, “Can we go on location?”
“Are we able to go anywhere?”
“I tramp through swamps, walk up mountains, almost get hit by cars, take rides in boats, get chased by crazy roosters, encounter rattlesnakes, I expect to be eaten alive by mosquitos, and I am a pro at walking in fields.” In other words, yes.
Am I exaggerating? Actually, no–I really have experienced all of the above.
And why do I LOVE it so much? Well, I really love adventures in general. I also love that look on a girl’s face, when she feels beautiful. I tell her the issue is actually because her friends take crappy I-phone pictures, so she doesn’t know how photogenic she is. But that’s not really the case. Our culture is bombarded with “how women are supposed to look.” We are told there is only one type of beauty, and we are given strict guidelines on what that is supposed to look like. I love to get to know someone, and photograph the personality that comes out when she feels comfortable. When that confidence comes out, and that beauty of heart pops out of her eyes? I realize all those mosquito bites are entirely worth it.
Most of the shoots are 2-3 hours. I photographed a lot of girls last year. They would come in with their laundry basket FULL of clothes, and ask, “What do you think I should wear?” We design their shoot together. We pick a place that fits personality. We laugh a lot and talk a lot.
With that said, I don’t only photograph girls. I photograph a lot of guys too. But that’s different. I don’t look for beauty to pop out of their eyes. We just have a grand adventure and I make fun of them a lot. They like it. Really. I guess my goal with guys is to “call out their inner stud.” I’m not going to explain that. Let’s just think GQ.
To prove my point that I really don’t exaggerate, I am posting a few photos…
This rooster chased me. I took a photo of him for prosperity.
I jumped into a cow pen once. Did you know cows can sometimes be mean? No? I didn’t either. I named one cow Bob.
This guy was in Clarkston’s Hockey locker room. I’m glad my sense of smell survived. It was a close call, really.
This girl rocked out her photoshoot, but she also went home and texted me after the shoot. Her text read something like this, “I counted and I have 59 MOSQUITO BITES!” We were pretty much in a swamp. Epic.
This field may look gorgeous, but it is also where I saw a rattlesnake right next to Meagan’s foot.
We were able to capture this photo after her mom and I convinced her that the area around her was now safe, since the snake had “obviously” left.
I go into all kinds of fields. Some are definitely safer than others.
Boats are super fun
This girl really wanted to incorporate her love of Qdoba. I told her I would join her if she bought me a burrito. Win-Win.
You know how I told you I climb mountains? Well, I do. I climb the highest mountain we have in Oakland County. You have no idea how high Pine Knob feels when you climb it without the aid of a chairlift. You practically have to make oxygen choices.