children's portraits

Delicious Bits of Life - A poem for my 9 year old daughter

Delicious Bits of Life - A poem for my 9 year old daughter

Then the realization that this is it. This moment. This chocolate batter. This cake. This child.

This is the best. The best that life has to offer. I have it. It is mine. It is here. And now. So I savor this. I smell the rich dark chocolate, hear the harmonies of the background song, listen to my daughter chattering on. Drink it in. And smile to myself. I totally win.

Girl

The dichotomy that is being a girl in America with all the elements of pressure that it entails. That is what I want to explore in a continuing series of portraits with girls of all ages. 

The messages that we grow up with that inform us on the shoulds of being a girl...be pretty, be chaste, be smart, be passionate, be a career girl, be true, be a mother, be tender, be strong, be yourself. 

Pursuing what it means to receive and translate all those messages into creating who we are from day to day. How to throw them off or embrace them depending on what's truly inside of us. The fear that comes from, so many things, like standing up and saying no. The drive that comes from endless possibilities.

I seek to find and reflect back the ideas and emotions surrounding these conflicting demands from our culture. I want to explore these ideas through portraits of girls in a storytelling way. I haven't figured out my exact path. I tend to work more as I go along. I have ideas I will try and fail at and will share what I can as the process unfolds. I also still, always, wish to creates works of art. Art with emotion is how I would describe it. 

Here are two different directions a recent session with my own daughter took. I have been planning on portraits with this red backdrop and a red dress. Charlie and I went into the studio to play and she directed much of what happened. She is like a wee sage to me. She is clear on what she wants and feels. And yet, I still see in her the mixed feelings from everywhere that influence her too. 

May these images capture your imagination and heart. Each frame is it's own story and dream.

Call me if you want to join this project and create art with me. 207-318-0467

In Dreams - Jen

 Yah for toothless grins!

Addison's Dream Session...so very dreamy

Addison walked in and was immediately in control of the studio. She was clear on what she wanted to wear and how she wanted to play and dance. I love seeing a girl her age with such confidence and I hope that it stays with her throughout her life! She was comfortable in her own skin which I respect so much. But then it helps when you are 7 and the world is your oyster. (:

It also helps that mama is also a photographer (an acquaintance of mine) so she is also clearly comfortable posing in front of the camera. She did just what I asked of her and knew how to hold a pose! And that hat was obviously made for her!!

Also I really love the juxtaposition of how grown up a child can look like in that first black and white portrait below and then how a portrait will record such an important milestone like the process of losing your teeth and tell you exactly what stage a child is in. The gift of capturing portraits is not lost on me. I have such joy at working with children and getting them to open up for me. And also in knowing that in even 10 years when Addison is 17 this portrait will mean even more for her mama and for herself when she looks back at it.

                                                                                       Love who you are. Right now. - Jen

The Dream Sessions - Playing dress up

When I see these portraits they make my heart skip a beat. I mean that. They take my breath away. I just started offering these sessions. The first one I did was with my own daughter this summer (another blog post about and with those portraits coming soon). When I was in the studio with her I realized, like it hit me over the head, I had to do these for other children. I am in love with this whole idea. My idea was to keep it simple. I wanted to give kids the chance to play, dress up, and have fun while I observed. I sent out the word after my daughters session and I have since done a few more sessions and the idea has taken off. I am so excited to be able to offer the opportunity for kids to come have fun and create works of art for the family.

I love my daughters huge dimples when she smiles, but I am just as in love with her totally intense stare and the way she takes things in. My guess was that other parents feel the same way. I wasn't 

wrong. My favorite portrait from this session (and one that I am so obsessed with in general - I made a 20x30 canvas of it for my studio) is the one right below. You can't really see her whole face. There is a bit of mystery as to what she might be thinking. I wondered what her mom would say about the portrait or if she would like it. She was clearly blown away and she loved it. My guess was right that it's not just the huge smiles that you adore in your child, but the intimate, quiet, thoughtful moments as well. 

Each child has their own intensity. Their own world that they create. You remember when you made up whole movies, scenes, and worlds? As parents we get to observe this time in your child's life. This unique time when play and what you imagine is still so real. I have watched my friends children grow up and I have watched this time slowly fade away. When real life sets in and the innocence is fading for one reason or another. I feel like most grown ups, at some point, all talk about this idea. We can look back and remember, maybe barely, a time when we loved play for plays sake. When everything we played was about saving the world, being dressed up for a party, or pretending we had 6 brothers and sisters (yes, as an only child this seemed really cool). (:

I know that too soon this time will have passed. My question to you is "Will you clearly remember the way she feels right now? The intensity in her eyes as she imagines a dream in her own mind?" 

 If you are interested in booking a Dream Session then call today to book your session and preserve the moments for her...for when she is all grown up, so she can remember too. 207-318-0467 or jen@jendeanphoto.com

In Life and Love- Jen

hanging out with the beautiful girl

i am making an effort to finally get back to blogging after many many months of sickness and now playing catch up with all the work i came back to. i love blogging and have truly missed it. i have learned a lot over the last 6 months. not that these weren't things i didn't know. but sometimes we need a reminder.

take nothing for granted. especially your health.
enjoy every minute cause you never know...
and relax. or you may be forced to.
here are some photos of the most important thing in the world.

charlie.

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smith family photos

nadra photography hosted a fundraiser she calls 'day at the beach' every year at least once and sometimes twice. this year the funds went to the maine cancer foundation. most all of us know someone who has personally experienced the effects of cancer so this money will go to further cancer research right here in maine.

the smith family wanted to do some traditional family shots and then some fun stuff as well. i did photos of everyone in groups for a little more formal photos (not stuffy though) and then playing together. we decided to change it up and not do it on the beach. here are a couple of my favorites.

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with the grandparents...who don't look like grandparents!
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wednesdays with charlie

i have a new summer schedule that includes wednesdays home with my charlie. i feel so lucky to get to spend more time with her. if i had my way it would be more days with her then work, but alas...

so since i am always taking photos of her anyway, i decided to share our wednesday adventures together here. i am constantly looking for new ways to see things and searching for the perfect light...what better way than with a two year old? (:


today the laundry proved very entertaining.
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someone stops over for a visit. who could it be?...
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cousin owen!
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peek-a-boo owen.
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my intense little girl

i love this child more than my being can bear most days. if you are a parent you know this feeling. i could never quite understand it before having charlie.

she is a very intense person. passionate about everything. i love that about her. she wants to wear pink and dresses everyday. then she wants to be naked. here is the best of both. (:

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cape cod with charlie

while we were in the cape i took the opportunity to take a few photos of my own family. here are some shots of charlie chatting and singing while on a skateboard ramp she spied in the yard of the skyfield bed and breakfast . the bed & breakfast had miniature horses, sheep, peacocks, chickens and an african gray parrot. charlie loved it! and so did we...



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i adore the stance she has taken here...she is so excited and ready to run...she's revving up!
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lucas is two!

here are some shots from the latest photo shoot at ft. williams with one of my favorite families! emily and shawn were a bride and groom from one of my weddings a few years ago and they have become close friends. just how i like it! they live about a ten minute walk from my house. in fact this morning we went to feed the ducks together....but, i digress. emily is pregnant with a little girl! yah!! and lucas just turned two a few months ago. so here are some of my favs (though it was hard to choose). they are just all so cute! look how beautiful miss pregnant em is!

i love that i caught lucas walking by and looking lovingly at mama...

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something about this moment i am just in love with....
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and this long shadow of lucas is wonderful.Photobucket


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he's just got a great smile.
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stunning as always!

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there is nothing better then the feeling captured here. it makes me smile every time i look at it.
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