Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Wetlands Portrait Session

A rainy and cloudy sky greeted me as I drove into the little southern town of Titusville on a January morning. This day had excitedly been planned to get together with two of my dearest friends for a photo shoot. The lovely Jean Marie is also a photographer, and since we've both been so busy shooting others, we desperately needed new head shots. And then Becca joined us because she's the most amazing friend ever and didn't mind following us around wet marshes and down muddy trails, also helping us with our supplies, filling the time with more joy, and blowing us away with her gorgeous posing skills. All that to say, this is probably one of my favorite portrait sessions ever, and I can't help but fall in love with each shot of these gorgeous ladies. Their beauty is deeper than their precious smiles, and I can't say enough how blessed I am to have them in my life.

The location of our shoot was perfect: the wetlands of their local wild life refuge. 
We pointed out a few gators and numerous colorful birds along the drive, watched the tranquil clouds blow by in the gray sky, and tried to avoid the light rainfall descending on us.
And then we captured life, the beauty of who we are today, and the joys of what we love to do as photographers. And we laughed a ton. Pretty much the whole afternoon was full of deep, heart felt laughter. Those rain clouds couldn't steal our joy.
Florida humidity y'all. It's crazy some days.

And now some of my absolute favorites of this gorgeous lady...

Hidden swamps roads, wild weeds, and cloudy skies made this portion of our shoot simply perfect.
{And I could have stayed there all day if it were not for the baby gator hiding on a cool, muddy bank of swamp's edge, not but five feet from where we were walking}

           And then our gorgeous model Becca just shines in these casual, captivating moments. I literally just turned around and found her naturally posing like this. oh this girl. <3

We left this beautiful marshland and drove until we finally came to our next and final location. It was a quiet little river with a metal dock overlooking serene, rainy day still waters. Dolphins and manatees played carelessly in the undisturbed river, while the sight of a few fishermen along the shores added even more tranquility to this peaceful haven.
A little walk brought us to what is now one of my favorite spots in Florida.
Imagine a quiet wood, only disrupted by the gentle sound of rain drops and an occasional bird.
This wood, comprised of Australian pine trees, held an outer layer of  trees with deep green pine needles, and once you enter in, somehow light leaks through and fills this beautiful place with a delightful soft light. 
Its as if the whole world stops in this quiet little wood....
as if for the first time in a long while, you can just pause and truly breathe.

Calm waters beckoned us to the shore line, and then a happy dolphin found its way into Jean's lens.
The whole setting was so serene. The soft raindropscontinued to gently fall upon us; the quiet, clear waters splashed upon the rocky shore as an occasional boast passed by, and the hearts of these three, now soaked adventurers, were stilled by the majesty of it all.
And then hysterical laughter commenced, and the calmness disappeared into the deepest joy.
This day is one that I shall always treasure.... a day filled with abounding joy and sacred hearts. 
A day of cloudy skies and soft light.
A day of adventuring through wetlands, marshy weeds, and peaceful waters.
A day spent savoring the gift of life and capturing it with not only our lens, but also our hearts.


  1. You did such a fabulous job with these, Shannon! The pictures reflect Jean and Becca so well! <3

  2. Wow, Shannon! The more I scrolled down, the lower my jaw kept getting! You are developing a wonderful eye and showing that through your photos & your style is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!