Rebekah likes Lord of the Rings. I mean, she really likes Lord of the Rings. So much so that in our first emails to each other, she asked about incorporating her Lord of the Rings sword into the photo shoot.

Lord of the Rings? I’ve never read the books or seen the movies. A sword? This was new territory for me. I admit I was a little tentative as to how to approach this shoot, but I’m always up for a new challenge.

As it turns out, I had nothing to be concerned about. Rebekah totally owned the sword and chose a great look to complement her treasured prop and LOTR necklace. 

I had a blast working with Rebekah and her mom. Rebekah had been referred to me, but it felt like I had known the two of them for years. 

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Meet Taylor.

This talented gal graduated last night from Anoka High School.

It was extra special for me to take her senior photos because she is my niece.

Taylor has been very involved with band over the years. Incorporating Anoka and her passion for percussion in many shots really embodied who Taylor is.

All the best to Taylor as she heads to college this fall!

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In elementary school, Picture Day was a big deal for me. I’d plan a special outfit and even a different hairstyle than normal. One year, my mom encouraged me to look like myself. She said friends and family would want a photo of how they knew me. Today, I offer the same advice to people I photograph.

So what if, like me, you wear your hair straight some days and curly on others? That was the dilemma for a high school senior I photographed last July. The solution? A photoshoot with straight hair in the morning and a second shoot with curly hair later that day.

The day was hot and humid, but Rachel and her mom were upbeat and great sports. It was a joy to photograph Rachel!

Fun side story: As noted in an earlier blog post, my other passion is teaching. I got to know Rachel’s mom from school after substitute teaching for her class on many occasions. We learned we had one of those “it’s a small world” connections when we discovered her family is good friends with a family that goes way back with mine. (See April 27, 2016 post.) In fact, the daughters from both families, Rachel and Greta, are very close friends. I love it when my worlds collide.

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I’m so flattered when high school seniors ask me to take their photos. These are images that will mark a significant time in their lives. Since starting Molly B Photography, I have usually photographed about one high school senior per year. But this past season, I captured more than a half-dozen members of the Class of 2016. 

With graduation season right around the corner, I thought it would be fun to present a special mini-series highlighting each of these high school seniors.

 

Greta was the first senior I worked with. We had an early-morning shoot just a few days into her summer vacation. Greta and I roamed the quiet park as her parents and their dog hung out to the side and enjoyed the surroundings. Greta was so relaxed and natural. It was a joy to spend time with her and her family.

The shoot was particularly special for me because Greta’s dad and my husband, Jeff, have a friendship that started in early elementary school and continued through college, our weddings, and beyond. I was thrilled to play a small part in Greta’s last chapter of high school. All my best to her as she leaves Gopher Country to become a Badger.

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One thing I love about photography is when I get to do something a little different. Last month I photographed five members of Christ Presbyterian Church. Their stories (and my photos!) appeared in the church’s magazine last month.

Stories begin on Page 4

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Michelle photo shoot - Part 2 (see previous post for Part 1)

My memories with Michele include our days in theater in high school and community theater. Wait, make that a handful of middle school productions, too.

So it was no surprise to me that Michele had this idea for a stylized photo shoot - ‘50s-style. Though it can cause some apprehension, I love trying something new and outside my comfort zone. 

Michele found some great props and we spent an hour in her kitchen cooking up some great shots. As I expected, the actress in her made this such a fun experience.

By the way, does the first image remind you of a famous sitcom character from the past?

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Back in 2007, I was one of four high school classmates (3 gals and a guy) who met throughout the year to plan our 25-year class reunion. After the reunion, Michele, Kathy, and I discovered we were all at pivotal decision-making times in our lives and we continued to meet once a month for a few years. During this time I started Molly B Photography, and I looked forward to each meeting time to seek their advice and input and to catch up on life.

Last summer, I photographed Michele, who needed a profile photo for fitness classes she was teaching. 

Kathy, Michele, and I go back to middle school days. Though our monthly meetings faded, I still treasure the time I spent with them and the encouragement they gave me in my photography pursuits.

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Newborn photography is not like it was several decades ago when the hospital would throw a blanket over a baby carrier in front of a backdrop and call it a day. Photographers now specialize in pregnancy and newborn photography.

I love babies, but this is not my area of expertise. However, soon after a friend announced she was expecting, she asked me to do the newborn photos. I immediately turned down the job, suggesting someone who focuses on this area would be more fit when the arrival time came.

But she insisted she wanted me and talked me into it. For the next half year, I researched newborn photography. I watched videos and followed conversations on  forums to prepare me for this shoot.

This little man was four days old when I photographed him in his grandparents’ home (I was so fortunate with the location). He was a doll, and did such a good job for me. He even grinned for me...okay, it was probably gas, but in my book it was a grin.

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Meet Lulu. Her high school senior photo session was my first of the 2015 season. She is sweet and relaxed, and made my job fun.

Lulu’s life story started in China, as did my own kids, which is an extra special connection for me. Lulu just graduated from Hopkins High School late last week. At the graduation ceremony, students carry in flags from the countries where they were born. Lulu was chosen as the flag-carrier for China. (Cool fact: 23 flags/countries were represented among the Class of 2015.) 

Way to go on all you’ve accomplished, Lulu!

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As a senior in high school, my classmates and I were given an assignment to write about three careers that interested us. My three: elementary school teacher, photographer, high school teacher.

I attempted student-teaching high school (that’s a story for another day). The other two choices? I can’t believe I have been able to pursue both. 

I just completed my first year on staff at an elementary school since 2000. 

Meanwhile, I am excited for a new season with this other passion of mine: photography. This next chapter begins with a brand spankin’ new website and beginning this blog.

I’ve been rather quiet in sharing my photography adventures over the last couple of years, which included several “firsts” for me.

Stay tuned for a mix of new shoots, as well as revisiting some shoots from the recent past.