Peyton's West Creek Portrait Session

With only a few days left of summer, I am trying to squeeze in as much photo practice as I possibly can. After gaining a little bit of skill and confidence, I decided to post in the Beach Haven West community forum in search of a young family or couple that felt comfortable getting in front of the camera for a mini photo session. I had so many inquiries that I felt slightly overwhelmed and decided to connect with a young family who wanted portraits of their soon to be 3 year old, Peyton. We had a time and date set, all I had to do was come up with the right location. Leading up to the day of the session, I did that thing where I try to psych myself out. That downward spiral of negative thoughts and totally irrational emotions such as I can’t do this because:

I’ve never done this before.

I’m not familiar with my new camera yet.

What if I can’t change the settings fast enough? Maybe I should just shoot in auto.

I don’t have a website.

I don’t really know how to edit yet.

How will I deliver the gallery?

What if they hate the finished product?

What if they hate me?!


So instead I put that counseling degree to good use and challenged those thoughts and came up with some damn good reasons why I should do this:

I’ve always loved photography.

I want to capture moments that make the people looking at the images feel something, so…

My heart is in the right place.

I have the summers off which gives me a perfect opportunity to create a personal business.

I am building a portfolio.

I am learning.

I am trying something new.

I have so many people that are cheering me on.

Speaking of those people cheering me on, let’s talk about my Dad for a second. He went with me to scope out locations and even found a pretty little spot that we ended up using for our photo session. In the car, we bounced ideas off of each other for what a summer photography business down the shore might look like. He always says he’s my biggest fan and he means it. My dad = the best.

That evening, I met sweet little Peyton and her family. She was an absolute beauty and so much fun to work with. I have to admit, I was nervous at first. But after a few minutes, Peyton and I both loosened up. The backdrop was the back creek of Beach Haven full of high grass and wildflowers. Peyton’s TWO outfit choices went perfectly with the setting - girlfriend even had a flower crown. I learned that bubbles are always a good idea and when it doubt, put on some tunes that everyone likes to jam out to. In Peyton’s case, it was Inner Circle’s Bad Boys - totally get it. She was the absolute perfect first “client” and the finished product is something that I’m really proud of and will most likely use for my portfolio.

So that downward spiral of irrational thoughts can step off.

Meet, Peyton.