Sisters | Lake Minnetonka

I found this little gem of a spot earlier this year during a forced family fun day with 3 of my 4 kids and husband. I recall leaving it and regretting not taking a few pictures on my phone just to remember it by. I got the big eye roll from my kids because I made them wait while I walked back there to take a few quick pictures with my phone. To me this was the perfect backdrop for half pint sessions this fall.

And then you add these girls…..
The Martin sisters are unlike anything I’ve seen in my own house. They are sweet and loving toward each other. My own kids are sarcastic and they show love through an unwelcomed nickname or not kicking you on the couch. What you see in their session was genuine and is a testament to their awesome parents.

……when God gave me a sister, he gave me a best friend.
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Chris | Irondale High School | Class of 2018

I enjoyed Chris very much. He’s your typical senior. He enjoys spending time with his friends and playing sports. He has a well decorated letter jacket as he has lettered in countless sports and clubs. But what I heard Chris talk about most, and what brought genuine smiles to his face, was talking about his time as a Boy Scout. In fact, Chris has earned the title of Eagle Scout. This is the highest achievement attainable in the Boy Scouts and you can see the pride in his face when he talks about his accomplishments. Chris’ mom has been his troop leader throughout his time there. It’s a journey they’ve had together. As a mom, I can only imagine the memories they’ve made along the way. I’m sure a bittersweet end reflecting back on all the trips, service projects, and accomplishments he’s made over the years.
For Chris’ senior portraits it was important for Chris to be in his scout uniform. I thought it was only fitting to include mom as well since this has been their journey together.

For the second half of his session, Chris’ brother and dad joined us at Silverwood Park in St. Anthony. What a great location full of mature oak trees, tall grasses, and Silver Lake for a backdrop. This was a great spot to let Chris and his brother be just that….brothers. Growing up, I didn’t have siblings, and I love watching siblings together. I love how brothers show genuine love by placing each other in a headlock style hug. Who knew!

Chris has a great foundation that has been laid for him. He will do well in whatever his future holds.

Congratulations on your senior year Chris!
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Molly | Class of 2018 | Armstrong High School

Molly. There must be something with the name…. every Molly I’ve ever met has been so nice and sweet. This girl is no exception! I have photographed two of Molly’s four older siblings for their senior portraits. I’ve also photographed her family on a couple of occasions. Through the years, with every encounter we’ve had, she’s always been the sweet younger sister, quiet and smiling.
What I learned was that Molly has another side to her as well. She’s a strong soccer player playing defense for the Armstrong Falcons varsity team. Molly is also a giver. She has been raised in a family who values serving others. She frequently volunteers her time on mission trips and in local feed kitchens, such as Feed My Starving Children, just to name a few.

For Molly’s session we stayed with in Minneapolis. Molly wanted a mix of urban and greenery. Like many of my other seniors this year, she loved the Stone Arch Bridge as well. For me it was important to give Molly a session she wanted but still have it be her own and not like every other senior I’ve photographed at this same location.

I enjoyed watching Molly’s confidence boost as the session evolved. It usually takes about 30 minutes for my clients to relax and let their shoulders down. I try to show the back of the camera a few times to say “see, you’re gorgeous!” (I love the smiles that come from this.) Once they see this the rest of the session usually rocks on. The last shot I took of the night is in the bottom right of the collage of images. It took me a few minutes to get the settings perfected on my flash (ocf), but once I captured it, I showed it to Molly. Amazing! I think she finally understood what I was trying to accomplish. Hopefully she also thought it was worth waiting while I ran back to my car to get my battery pack that I had forgot.
I did spare her a hug after her session since I was sweaty and stinky from running around.

After high school Molly plans to pursue business and is considering St. Thomas University.

A heartfelt thank you to both Molly and her mom for trusting me again to document such an important time in your family’s life.
It has been an honor to be a part of so many milestones.

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Bramlee | Class of 2018 | Rogers High School

I can’t say enough about Bramlee and what a good time she was! I have known this girl since the day she was born. Her mom and I became quick friends the day they moved next door, just weeks before “smart and sassy” was born. I always feel a little added pressure when I’m photographing someone close to me. I want to deliver beautiful images to every client, but I always hold the bar a little higher for myself when it’s personal.

Bram is a HUGE fan of America’s Top Model. This made my job easy since she loosened up in front of the camera instantly. She changed her expression and movements every so slightly all on her own. I can’t help but hear the song “All the Pretty GIrls” playing in the back of my head when I think of this. Teenage girls love the mirror and will spend hours in front of it. I know this because I too was a teenage girl 100 years ago. So Bram and all the pretty (teenage) girls are “talking to the mirror in their underwear!”
Ha! I laugh at this because, since before time, this is what teenage girls do. Yes, even us old parents would practice different facial expressions in the mirror.
Thank you Kenny Chesney for such a true and awesome song!

Outside of being a HS senior and mirror loving fashionista, she dances competitively at Jete Dance Centre.
She also recently started working (insert mom jumping for joy) at a local restaurant.

After graduation, Bramlee plans to attend college for business/marketing at Bethel University.

Congratulations on your senior year Bram!
It has been a joy to watch you grow up into a beautiful, kind, and fun young woman.

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Carter | Totino-Grace High School | Senior Boy

There is no denying high school seniors are my favorite to photograph. It’s an important milestone for them and an honor for me to document it. Once the session is done, the images have been edited, I bring the senior and their parents back to the studio to view a slideshow of their gallery.

Watching the seniors face light up when they see themselves on screen gives me all sorts of feel goods inside. Sometimes it boosts their confidence. Sometimes it gives them a confidence that has been missing. Watching mom’s eyes swell with tears, pride; it makes my heart so full.

Sure, I could post their images on a website and have them pick out their favorite 8×10’s and 5×7’s, but then I would miss the experience of the excitement and emotion. This is the reason I love high school seniors so much. This is my reason, my purpose.

This is Carter. Carter is a Senior at Totino-Grace High School. He is super funny and witty. He is also the son of my uncle; so I guess we’re cousins. My uncle being similar in age to me, is more of a brother, and Carter more like a nephew. Anyway, enough of the family dynamics. My point is, I felt a little added pressure to deliver a gallery I hoped they would love.

Another reason: I know right away if they love them or not. Their faces tell me everything I need to know and I’m not left keeping myself up at night wondering if they love them or hate them.

After graduation, Carter plans to pursue studies in the engineering field. Congratulations Carter on finally reaching your senior year! It’s a momentous year of lasts; last football games, last prom, last high school level/club swim meets, last year of khaki and navy uniforms…. But next year brings a world of firsts, embrace them all. Have a great year Carter and thank you for letting me be a part of it. I really enjoyed spending this time with you. ~Babe

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