There is a particular electric excitement when you’re in the stands at a high school robotics competition. Teams across the nation have been given the same problem to solve within the same parameters, and they have shown up to the competition field with wildly different solutions – all which rely on any number of details to operate correctly (from programming and circuitry to human player elements). My son was a part of his high school robotics club, which is how I found myself in the stands holding my breath with dozens of other team members, teachers, mentors, parents, and friends. We had a corporate liturgy for the day: Strain to see… Clench your fists… Exhale… Pump the air and scream relief and utter satisfaction… Repeat… Beyond partaking in the spectating and cheering, my camera was always in hand as I was the self-proclaimed paparazzi of the club, availing myself to behind-the-scenes and close-to-the-field action shots. I loved turning around in the bleachers and catching the fans at their best (and sometimes awkward) moments. As the season advanced with the teams’ successes, I got to know more of the students better. One such student was this lovely early-graduate senior: A creative soul with a mind whose gears were always turning, working out her next idea and solving her next problem.
I’m not sure which details about her came out first in the conversation as we sat side by side on wooden bleachers last year, but within five minutes I knew these things about her:
- She looked like her mom.
- She loves robotics; particularly the building of robotics.
- She designs cakes and is an amazing decorator.
- She switched to online high school.
- She was on track to graduate early.
- Kids love her.
- She loves creating.
“Please,” I begged. “Please let me take your senior photos next year!”
She giggled, blushed a little, and said, “Maybe!”
I spent the rest of the year hoping.
In August the wheels started turning! I went over to her house and had a complimentary consultation session with her and her mom (whom she really did resemble quite remarkably). We talked about their ideas, her personality and interests, the ideas that were flooding into my mind, potential locations, and potential dates. I left with a page full of notes. I left them with my prices and all these ideas to talk about. I always tell my potential clients, “Ideas are free. Take them and run with them, if you want. But… If we click as people (photography pun not intended), then let’s do this together!”
I’m was thrilled! This senior, who just graduated in December, is, above all else, kind. She is loyal to her robotics team, generous in her friendships, affectionate toward her family, and smart as a whip (we had a lot of vintage elements to this session, so I thought I’d use a vintage phrase). Her kindness even finds expression in her hobbies, which require a healthy dose of nurturing and patience: Gardening, Lego creations, baking, painting, and music. Her family travels for vacations and she is wired for those adventures. I mean, she loves Marvel and Star Wars, so adventure is just second nature, right?! She is simply the right balance of playful and present. As she pursues mechanical engineering in college, I know that she will be the hard-to-define-but-highly-sought-after unicorn element on any production team.
October was the selected month for her senior session. And, since it’s October in Indiana, I always also pick a rain date. Thank goodness, because the original date was soooo windy! Our rain date was gorgeous! I was a little worried that it would be uncomfortably chilly, but we ended up quite comfortable. Senior sessions are two hours long, which gives us enough time to go to two or three locations and have just as many outfit changes (which this one opted out of). I loved the locations and props that were chosen to represent this artsy, expressive, sweet, sci-fi loving soul that very much enjoys journeys and wants to be a mechanical engineer.
We went to an underpass bridge with a fantastic mural on the B&O trail in Brownsburg, IN (thanks to her dad for finding that) with a Lego bouquet in hand. Then down to Plainfield, IN to a vintage streetscape painted on the side of a barn with vinyl and suitcases for her adventures. We were all surprised to find out they knew the owners of the property as they wandered out to witness our fun. As they caught up in the driveway, I was caught up by the golden hour on full display between trees behind our lovely senior, and so I started clicking away on my camera rather casually. Those spur-of-the-moment portraits ended up being some of their favorites. What can I say? My eye is always seeing things through my lens! Finally we headed to their very own kitchen, where the session got truly sweet with icing and sprinkles going everywhere!
Just a week later we were reviewing the images from that session. Their price list became their worksheet as we started imagining how her personality could come out to play. She’s the youngest sibling, so there was already the “senior wall” that an 8×10 would take it’s prophesied place, but beyond that there were grandparent photo frames to be filled, desks to be adorned, and some unique products that just had to be… had! I love what they choose and am thrilled for a quick turn around by my professional printer so they can have their order in time for her mid-year graduation party.
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- Posted by hellobabs
- On January 17, 2024
- 0 Comment