Sunday, September 29, 2013

::beach sisters::The Oranen's::

Photographing long time friends is such a joy to me, especially the ones that knew me LONG before I ever picked up a camera.  Erin and I have been friends for 14 years, working together at this very beach as poor, starved college students (literally, starved). :)  That is one of the best summers I can remember and so thankful for her friendship, laughter, long late night talks and walks on the beach.  And now 14 years later, with Andy (who was her boyfriend at the time) and their two sweet babes, it's such a treasure for me to create images on the same shores where we took some rather silly, sometimes unpleasant looking, photos of our days together.  May you enjoy these images too.  Oh, and you live WAY to far away from me now!  But love you anyways!

It was a rare BRIGHT day when we did these, and it was tough for us all not to be squinty with the glare.  But we powered through with a quick 30 minute session after a lovely lunch and chat together.

Erin's entire side of the family was there for the week as well so we took the opportunity to snap a couple rare extended family photos! :)

Love you, friend! xoxoKoren

::18 months old::Iowa::

Another sweet session with one of my favorite little girls to photograph, Iowa.  I've been photographing her since she was about 1 week old, and from that first day, she was so photogenic, probably one of my best newborn sessions.  I feel like part of the family when I can see these little ones grow, visiting every 6 months to nab those milestones.  We had a delightful shoot with her lovely mama at the Reed College campus in Portland, full of trails, bridges and open spaces.  

Her eyes are so beautiful!

Using a little prop that mommy brought, this belonged to her daddy when he was a boy!

These with Allyson and Iowa are some of my favorite mommy/daughter images!

Until next time, sweet pea! xoxoKoren

Friday, September 27, 2013

::a personal post::

While I'm so busy during the summer and beyond photographing your families, behind the scenes is my AMAZING family.  I wanted to share a little bit about us with you.  Maybe it'll make you understand what makes me tick.  Maybe you'll see why I really enjoy working with kids.  Maybe you'll be sorry for me that I need more sleep, hahaha! ;)

One of our favorite things to do is go to the Oregon Coast at Cannon Beach.  If you know the Oregon Coast at all you know that it's rarely a warm experience.  But we don't care.  We spend our day digging in the sand, throwing the football, being buried, and of course, mom "trying" to snap photos of her babies.

Probably one of my favorite photos of all three kids!  This is a huge canvas on my wall. 

::the big brother::Ethan::

This is my boy.  He just turned 10 years old and I am SO proud of this young man.  He has the most tender heart, is generous with hugs and kisses for his mom, doesn't let others push him around and is friends with EVERY human he meets. :)  I love how he cares about the feelings of others and is quick to say prayers for his friends that might be sick or sad.  I love you, Ethan, you make this mama proud!

This photo is one of the very FIRST I ever took with my first camera, a Canon Rebel T1i almost 3 years ago.  Although it screams with technical shortcomings, I love his sweet 7 year old face. :)

Now onto current photos.  If he can stay on his feet, Ethan's quite a studly soccer player.  I love watching my kids play sports, as my husband and I enjoyed playing, and still do, several different sports.  If you hear someone screaming for joy, ahem, that'd be me.

And I just thought it was cute he was walking with a girl. "Mo-om"

We celebrated his 10th birthday by camping (cringe on my part).

I like to give my kids their own little shoot on their birthdays.

He's a long skinny kid, hahahah!

I love how my friend's sons look up to Ethan.  My kids are often among the oldest in our circles and those little boys just worship the ground he walks on.  And he's become such a great role model, I'm so proud of him.  And it's good for me to remind him that those little boys are watching how he treats me or his sisters. ;)

First day of 5th grade, ready to face the world.

Adorable, handsome, silly, kinda nerdy, this guy has my heart forever!

::the mature one::Reagan
This little girl is AMAZING.  Mature beyond her almost 8 years, she never ceases to stun me with what she does.  She's sweet and calm, helpful without being asked, probably the BEST big sister ever, motherly, responsible, honest and so creative.  Not a day goes by where I receive a little note from her that says, "Dear Mom, you're the best mom ever.  I love when you tuck me in at night.  Love, Reagan"  I need to hold onto those treasures.

Again, at the same time I took Ethan's photo, one of my firsts.  Reagan is my go to girl whenever I needed to practice or try new things.  She's so photogenic (although I'm not at ALL biased) and takes direction well.  We have fun together.  I love her little 5 year old face here.

I just love that she lets me photograph her!  And that's why you see more photos of her than any of my other kids.  Ethan only lasts about 5 frames and he's done, and Jordan just runs away or won't stop spinning.

Her gorgeous eyes are my favorite feature, because she has my eyes.

Another budding soccer star, she is aggressive and tough out there.  No one pushes my girl around.

First day of second grade. :)

Always willing to share the spotlight with Jordan.  Seriously, the most awesome big sister.

I love you, my precious girl! You are one of a kind!

::my baby::Jordan::
This little spitfire has really added some zest to our family. :)  Definitely a free spirit, Jordan resembles me in looks when it comes to all of my kids.  From day one she possessed that strawberry blonde hair, we think it's a recessive gene, but it certainly fits her personality.  She may be the most headstrong of my children, but she is also the most snuggly and affectionate.  She's quick to run up to me, wrap her chubby arms around my neck and squeak, " I LOVE you, Mommy!"  That never gets old.

I'm a little embarrassed to share this photo with my contrasting editing in Picknik. :) But it's nice to see that I have indeed grown as a photographer (hopefully ;) ).  But she was barely 1 in this shot and you just forget how fast they grow.

This is the first year she was not afraid to go swimming!  Yippee!

Attempting some kind of photo. :)

A complete daddy's girl.

Not wanting to be outdone by her soccer playing siblings, we dressed her up in Reagan's old soccer gear  for her own "team" photo. :)

Her pants got wet and she didn't fancy that, so we had half naked girl.



The relationship these two have is so precious.  I hope they're best friend forever.  

 ::the dogs (and a cat)::
I'm the not so proud owner of two dogs and a cat.  While I do not dislike animals, I kinda wish I didn't own them.  It's all a blur as to how I acquired them, but apparently I'm stuck with 3 furry children. Sigh!

Coco, 11 1/2, we adopted her about 2 years ago.  We call her grandma and she snores. Ugh!

Jill, long story short, she's 4 and we welcomed her BACK to our house after living with my husband's mom for 3 years.  The end... ;)

::my love::Nick::
And the man in my life, my husband Nick.  We've been married for 13 years and I have to say the more effort you put into something, the more rewards you reap.  Nope, life's not perfect, he works LONG hours while I take care of the kids and scramble to find childcare for my jobs, but he's so supportive, doesn't bring work stress home and is the BEST dad I've ever seen.  His kids love him and with good reason.  He's hands on, plays with them, tucks them in at night, prays with them, gives them hugs and love, the list goes on.  I'm a lucky gal and wouldn't have it any other way.

 Romance still takes time and effort, but it's worth it. ;)

I'm the first to say that motherhood took me by surprise.  It's the best and the worst job all at once.  I probably cry at LEAST, again at LEAST, twice a week, maybe more, for various reasons.  We pour ourselves out to our families, sometimes they appreciate the thankless jobs we do, but most times not.  It's ok, it's what I signed up for and I'm thankful for the many gifts in my life.  I love my babes, my husband, my home, my friends, my job.  BUT, I don't always "like" them. :) And that's just life.

 I'm the first to strike a pose for the camera, but my friends have gradually learned to follow suit to I don't "outshine" them, hahah, right, or maybe they do it so I don't look quite as foolish as doing it alone. :)

Thanks for taking some time to read this very LONG post and if you made it this far, well done.  I was feeling nostalgic on this drippy day and just wanted to show you a little about the gal behind the lens, prompting you kiss your husband, tickle your kids and looked "relaxed" even though junior may be screaming his head off. "Don't worry, this isn't video, it looks great in a still image"

I love you all! xoxokoren