“Seeing” My Sister Through My Viewfinder

Over the years I have had the great honor of photographing my family. These are by far my favorite people to photograph in the whole world. Photography is incredibly important and personal to me. To capture a moment in time and freeze it right there! I feel that it is my responsibility to do the very best that I can! 

When I was kid I loved photography! I did not own a camera of my own, but I sure used those cheap disposable film cameras to the best of my ability! I would dress my three younger siblings up in matching clothes and hang a sheet behind them and simulate what I thought looked like a photo shoot. Looking back at these photos I laugh! They really are quite ridicules! I cropped my sister’s top of her head off, I can see the wall in the background, and there is a stain on the sheet. Not to mention the photo is underexposed and there is a big teddy bear in the middle for no apparent reason!. My thirteen year old self thought these early pictures were awesome! I felt like a proper professional!

Left to right, My brother Brandon, Sister Crystal, and sister Rachael

Brandon, Crystal and Rachael

In some shoots I got more creative! One in particular I had my sisters dress like princesses and my brother like a pirate and they stood on the dresser in my room. It looks like a picture from Halloween, but no its just a normal day in our house!

As the years went on and I went to college and learned the proper techniques of photography I have had the opportunity to  photograph my siblings again, this time with better equipment.

This last weekend my youngest sister Rachael had asked me to take some photos of her for her college graduation announcements! It was such a honor to photograph my little sister for this momentous occasion. This may sound strange but when I look through the viewfinder of my camera I see more then I do with my naked eye! I see a new depth! A new inspiration!

Looking through my camera I really “saw” my sister!  She was not that tinny little girl with a bowl cut anymore. She was a beautiful young women about to start her professional life! I saw her joy radiate out from her!

I chose a beautiful location on the American River. Sure it was a bit chilly, the ground was slippery, and we often risked falling into the water, but it was a beautiful session!  Right when we were packing up to leave, the sky cleared and we saw the most wonderful sunset! The colors from the sunset reflected from the water and it was amazing! I took out my camera and took a few more photos! These turned out to be my very favorite ones!

Just like my photos from childhood, this photo was not perfect. There was not enough light on my subject because of the bright sunset in the background, but this picture means so much more to me than technique! This photo represents my sister; Warm, colorful, exciting, and beautiful! The whole photo shoot I kept trying to get that excited look from her for graduating, but without it being over the top or staged. When I put her in front of that sunset she literally glowed! I saw and felt her excitement! 

My sister’s boyfriend was a great help during the photo shoot. I tend to get pretty demanding of people around me when I zone in on photography, and he was a great assistant. Not to mention he kept my sister smiling 🙂  We were able to capture some beautiful couples shots as well during this shoot

Looking back at those early photos I see how much we have all grown, how much we have accomplished, and how close we still remain! Photography gives me a special power to capture these moments.I will never stop clicking away and learning new techniques. 

I don’t usually come out from behind the camera but I needed one picture with my sister!

I cant wait to see my little sister receive her diploma in May! I am one proud sister!