Michigan Senior Photographer

Mikayla- Class of 2019

I am going to be catching up on summer blog posts all fall and then I will be catching up on fall blog posts all winter. I am just accepting that being slightly behind is part of my life now, and if that means more Leland snuggles and lazy mornings as a family I am totally okay with that.

Since I have Leland home with me each day I have to set realistic expectations for myself. I have learned to pick out three things that must get done that day. I accomplish those three things first, and if there is time for anything else then great. If not, I still feel accomplished and on task. Typically my top three things are editing sessions and getting them back to clients, even if that means they get their pictures back before I get to posting a preview or a blog post.

So that brings us to Mikayla’s pictures! We snapped these at the beginning of the summer. Mikayla was so much fun to work with. We started the session with some family pictures, then her brother and dad headed out to get a table for dinner while Mikayla, her mom and I wondered around downtown Milford. It was clear that Mikayla enjoyed having her mom there, which made the time together even more special. For most seniors, senior pictures are the first of many big milestone events for the year. You could tell that Mikayla and her mom were going to have a whole lot of fun with all of the events to come.

I can almost feel that warm summer sunshine when I look back on these pictures! I hope you are having the most wonderful start to your senior year, Mikayla!

Marli- Class of 2018

I am still playing all of the catchup over here on blog posts from 2017, and I love it! It is so much fun to relive so many of the incredible sessions from the past year.  Up today is Marli's senior session.  I had so much fun working with Marli.  She brought her sister and her mom to the shoot and they were absolutely hilarious.  They were cracking me up the whole time.  Sometimes having a crowd can be nerve-wracking for seniors, but for Marli it was the perfect way to keep her smiles natural and fresh. 

I love Marli's style.  The way she added accessories like hats and jackets to her outfit is another great way to keep the pictures fresh and natural.  We started Marli's session at Maybury State Park and ended in downtown Detroit. I love how the lights started to come out during the end of our time together.  These are some of my favorite photos from the session, and they make me want to shoot even later into golden hour more often!  With an infectious smile, outgoing personality, and boundless confidence, I can't wait to hear about all of the amazing places life takes you after graduation, Marli! 

Brooke McDonald

Brooke absolutely rocked her senior session.  We met at Maybury State Park just as the sun was setting and the sky melted into the perfect fall golden hour.  As we explored the park I noticed that Brooke carried herself with a confidence that most teenagers don't have yet.  She was totally comfortable in her own skin and I couldn't get over what a natural she was in front of the camera.  And while I name off a few more compliments- can we talk about her style?! I kind of wanted to steal each of her outfits for my own closet! 

My favorite part about my time with Brook was chatting with her about high school.  She was just as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside, and her sweet personality showed through in each of her stories. Brooke was such a great story teller and I loved hearing all about her sports, high school activities and school trips.  Brooke recently went to Spain on a school trip- how cool is that?!  She chatted quickly and personally with me about funny stories and anecdotes from high school, and it was so much fun to just enter into her life during our time together. Brooke, with your beauty, confidence and outgoing personality you are going to do some amazing things after high school! Best of luck in the future!

Skylar- Class of 2018

If you have been following along here for awhile you know that I love all things summer. I love the beach, and being in the sun, I love boating and hiking and all of the activities that come along with summertime in Michigan. Now I have one more reason to love summer. Senior season.

I hope I don't sound like a broken record, but senior sessions are so. much. fun.  I get to meet confident, kind young adults like Skylar.  I get to hear about their dreams for the future and chat about all of their current interests and passions.  Each high school senior is so unique and I love hearing what makes them who they are. For Skylar that is being on the basketball team, hanging out with her friends, and being an older sister.  

Skylar is confident, outgoing, and joyful.  She shared with me about enjoying her senior year and also making plans for college next year.  Senior year brings so many fun milestones and I have to say I was getting a little nostalgic hearing her talk about homecoming, attending football games, sleepovers with friends and planning a senior trip.  So fun!  Have the most wonderful senior year, Skylar!

Calista- Class of 2018

Cali was one of the sweetest high school seniors I have photographed.  She made conversation easy and had a calm, kind demeanor about her.  Cali's mom came along for the shoot and it was clear that the two have a special relationship.  Mom quietly watched behind me with admiration as we moved from spot to spot. The two shared with about Cali's plans for college next year, the fun family vacation they had just returned home from and Cali's love for snowboarding. 

We met in downtown Birmingham for Cali's session and the location fit her personality just perfectly.  It was one of those beautiful evenings, when the sun sets slowly and as the city lights come out everything turns the prettiest shades of soft, muted colors. We found some really cool ally ways that I hadn't used for pictures before. Thankfully Cali's was a trooper because it just seems that all of the coolest spots are always located just a few feet away from dumpsters.  Totally worth it though for the awesome colors of the brick and bright doors that we stumbled across! I am really loving this session and the way it shows off Cali's cool, playful personality.  Have the greatest senior year, Cali!

Divya- Class of 2018

I have had such an incredible summer photographing the class of 2018! We have explored new parks, visited busy downtown areas, strolled though apple orchards, and waded into rivers and lakes- clearly they are an adventurous bunch! Divya's session took place in Ann Arbor and she totally rocked it.  

I loved Divya's style and was swooning as she showed me her outfits.  She did something that I always recommend my seniors do- she varied her outfits.  She wore a dress, pants, and shorts and her tops were all different styles.  When seniors do this it creates more variation in their photographs.  Certain poses lend themselves to certain clothing styles, so varied clothing allows us to get a range of poses. It is one of my favorite ways to create images that are totally unique within one session.

Not only did Divya have such a fun style, but she clearly has such a big heart. She shared with me how she had just returned home from a mission trip and that she was spending her summer working in a research lab.  The things she is doing as a teenager totally blew me away! The world can be scary and filled with uncertainty, but knowing there are young people like this makes things seem just a little bit better. Thank you so much for spending the evening with me, Divya, it was an honor! 

Madison- Class of 2018

Senior season is in full swing over here! For the past few weeks I have been meeting seniors for evening sessions at different parks and downtown areas around Metro Detroit.  It has been so much fun to see all of their personalities shine through during their sessions.  Madison is a part of my senior rep team so I was so excited to finally meet her in person.  We had to make a last minute change to her shoot location because of a concert in the park where we planned to shoot, but thankfully she just rolled with it.  And I have to say, I ended up loving our backup location even more than our original choice!  Madison was so easy going during the day as we texted back and forth, reworking our plan for the evening, and that relaxed personality flowed right into our shoot. 

We started our session in downtown Northville.  Madison told me about her plans to pursue a degree in teaching following high school, and how she is spending her summer working in a shop in downtown Milford.  Madison's mom came along for the session and it was fun to see the two interact.  I remember my own senior pictures, and picking out my outfits and going to the shoot with my mom. It is such a special experience to share.  We headed to Maybury State Park for the second part of Madiosn's session.  The sun was just setting over the trees and it created the prettiest light over the whole park.  

My favorite moment of the shoot came when we got to Maybury and Madison's mom got really quiet behind me.  Madison kindly asked her mom if she was alright.  While Madison and I had been joking around and getting Madison posed, her mom was tearing up behind me.  She shared that she was just taking in that Madison was actually graduating and that she looked all grown up.  I came home and shared the story with Ted and we started talking about how your senior pictures are really the first big event that kicks off your senior year.  How fun is it that, I get to share that moment with seniors and their parents? I don't take one moment of being a part of this experience for granted, because I know how special these memories are.  Thank you for letting me be a part of your senior year, Madison!

Riley- Class of 2018

If we haven't had a shoot together, let me explain to you how each session starts.  We meet one another, typically for the first time actually meeting in person, and then we spend a few minutes getting to know each other.  From there I let clients know what they can expect from the session.  I let them know that it may take a few minutes for them to get comfortable in front of the camera, but that is okay, it happens to everyone.  From there we start shooting and within 10-15 minutes clients have loosened up and are ready to take the photos they will really love.  The ones that are comfortable and natural.  

Well, that is not how it went with Riley!  I let her know that it was okay to feel a little unsure at first, but that feeling would go away.  And right there, first shot, I was like dang girl, we don't have to worry about those 10-15 minutes we usually take to get comfortable!  She was instantly comfortable in front of the camera and naturally posed, smiled and giggled her way right through her session.  I later learned that she is on the cheer team and does theater at her high school, so that might explain how comfortable she was!

We spent our evening together in Detroit, doing parts of her session at both Belle Isle and the Z Parking Garage.  Both are such incredible locations and I loved all of the unique spots we were able to find to help showcase Riley's personality.  Can we talk about those skyline views at sunset with her sassy attitude- absolutely my favorite photographs from her session! Thanks so much for letting me be a part of celebrating your senior year, Riley!