Photographing Valerie and Julian’s family was how I got started in photography.  I was their nanny and documenting their day-to-day life was one of my favorite things about my job.  To this day, those kids are still my little loves – they’re just not so little anymore!  

Valerie loves photographs but she loves the orderly kind with everyone in coordinating outfits and smiling sweetly.  Those are just fine sometimes – don’t get me wrong – but the kids are getting older and I feel like we’re approaching the end of an era. Their oldest is almost a young lady and in a blink, they will all be teenagers.  

With this in mind, I really wanted to capture them just as they are right now – in their day-to-day life again while all of the kids are still kids.  I talked Val into doing a true lifestyle session but I think she might have regretted her decision a bit as we arrived and told the kids to go pick out whatever they wanted to wear for the shoot. ;o)  Being a kid in everyday life though, is all about the mix of real clothes and costumes, grass stains, and messy hair.  It’s not perfect, but I think it’s completely beautiful. :o)





















  1. studiojeanie on April 30, 2009 at 5:26 pm

    these are absolutely breathtaking. and i loved what you wrote about grass stains and messy hair. it’s not perfect, but it’s completely beautiful (:

  2. Michelle Hartz on April 30, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    I love the pictures with the horses, fantastic!

  3. Valerie Head on April 30, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    Awesome. We love them all. We will call you.

  4. K. Crafton on April 30, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    Now THAT is true life…all of the images are amazing!

  5. rich on April 30, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    Absolutely stunning :) Gorgeous photos of a gorgeous family!!

  6. Jennifer R on April 30, 2009 at 8:36 pm

    Gosh, the pictures kept getting better and better as I scrolled through! Just beautiful!

  7. Angela Chin on April 30, 2009 at 10:44 pm

    I love these! The life and joy of this family just jumps out of the images. I totally agree with your approach – still traditional portraits have their place but this tells a story.

  8. Krystal :: Mint & Sage on April 30, 2009 at 11:10 pm

    The last few are my favorite faves! I love cozy candid family moments!

  9. Jackie Beale on May 1, 2009 at 7:29 am

    it must be so awesome to live there!

  10. miranda robinson on May 2, 2009 at 12:18 am

    beautiful post, mel. and beautiful pictures, as always.

  11. jane cato on May 3, 2009 at 6:51 am


  12. chris. on May 3, 2009 at 11:02 am

    These are incredible, Mel. So much personality!

  13. adrienne. on May 3, 2009 at 11:07 am

    I LOVE THEM!!!

  14. Shannon Hairr on May 5, 2009 at 7:52 am

    These are awesome as usual!!

  15. Shannon Hairr on May 5, 2009 at 7:52 am

    These are awesome, as usual!

  16. Laura & Casey on May 5, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    These are fantastic! Always looking forward to seeing new things from you guys!

  17. ohana photographers - david & kimi on May 8, 2009 at 10:13 pm

    the doggie one is my fav!

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