Maternity

Oktavec Maternity & Graduation Sessions | Charlotte Photographer

I met Jessica and Erica when I was 6 years old. My dad was in the Coast Guard, and we had just moved from FL to VA. We moved to a neighborhood of townhouses and they lived next to some mutual friends. Jessica and I were close in age (we share the same birthday and are exactly a year apart), and Erica was close in age to my two younger sisters. We were all close for the 3 years we were in VA, but then we had to move again (such is life for a military family!). Oddly enough, my youngest sister--who was probably 5 when we left--and Erica remained the closest over the years. And their closeness allowed the rest of us to remain close as well. What I love about our friendship is that we're all just there for each other, especially for the big life events. We can go months without talking, but when something important comes up, we're there. We're family.

I was over-the-moon excited when Jessica told me she was pregnant. There is no one more deserving and I know that she will be an amazing mother. I wanted to make sure that she had pictures to remember this special time, so I scheduled a maternity session while I was in town to attend her baby shower. We went to Mason Neck park, which is a beautiful park right along the shores of the Potomac river. It was the perfect location with beautiful sunset!

Around that same time, I learned that Erica was graduating from college -- another big life event! Her mom asked if I'd take some pictures of Erica in her cap and gown, but I wanted to do something special. Because Erica is special! And I knew that the only way to capture Erica's fun and colorful spirit was to find an equally fun and colorful backdrop. So I did some research and found these amazing wall murals in Crystal City. I knew I had made the right decision when Erica showed me the dress she had in mind. Gorgeous!

2018 Peach Tree Mini Sessions | Charlotte, NC Family Photographer

I picked the perfect location for my first sessions since moving to NC -- Springs Farm in Fort Mill, SC. I learned early on that peach blossoms were a big to-do down here and Springs Farm has beautiful orchards right next to an equally beautiful place called Anne Springs Close Greenway. The trees usually bloom in early spring, so the timing was perfect...as were my beautiful first NC clients!

LeBlanc Family Belly & Baby Session | Charlotte, NC Baby Photographer

I waited a long time for these little munchkins to arrive! First, they are my sweet little nephews and made me a proud Auntie x 2! Secondly, I've been excited to show potential clients what a Belly & Baby bundle would look like. I took maternity pictures of my gorgeous sister and her equally beautiful wife at 31 weeks, just a couple of days before Christmas. Who looks that good when they're carrying twins?? I was bigger than that carrying only one...just sayin'. 

About a week after B & G were born I did a combo stylized/lifestyle photoshoot. It's best to shoot newborns within their first 14 days when they spend most of their time sleeping and are their most pliable. My sister-in-law had bought these cute owl hats before the twins were born, so of course I had put the owls in their nest for a few shots. Then I got a bunch of lifestyle shots, which I love to do in black and white to add a bit of nostalgia. I hope they'll look back on these special snuggles and intimate moments when they are sleep deprived, covered in poo and wondering what they've gotten themselves into. 

Congratulations Michelle & Jen! 

xoxoxo