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  • Writer's pictureShana Watkins

Classic Black and White Heirloom Pictures

Updated: May 30, 2023

Have you seen my latest ob-session? Get it? So punny, right?!

If not, let me tell you what I've been up to! I'm bringing classic, black and white heirloom portrait sessions to St. Louis. Traditional in the South, these sweet portraits are everything I love about photographing children. They focus on THE most important things…the sweetest expressions, the details of every feature and a style that will never be dated.

Imagine that one day these portraits will be passed on to your children's grandchildren. Think about that for a moment. How can we preserve memories and connect generations in the days of instant and disposable?

I think this is the answer - archival, fine art children's portraits.

I would love to have portraits like this of my parents, and it reminds me of portraits I love of my grandparents. Gone are the days of stiff traditional portraits and boring, serious sessions. In fact, I've never laughed so hard in a session as I do with these hilarious kids.

Q: What if my child doesn't sit still?

Not an issue. At all. We tell jokes, play games, and the session is over before they even realize it started. They don't even have to be still (you'll have to see my strategy in action to believe it), and I love that we get the one-one-one time to chat about the things that are most important to them...Star Wars, koalas, the color purple…

With two decades of photographing children under my belt, it doesn't take long before I have all the expressions we need to choose the portrait that best reflects each unique child. Meanwhile, they're having so much fun that they're not ready for the session to end.

My hope is that they leave feeling like the celebrities they are! A 4 year old I photographed told his Mom afterward, “I think I did a very good job. I was VERY handsome.”

Q: What's the best age for these sessions?

Every age is the perfect age for a children's heirloom portrait, and I would say the sooner the better if you're even thinking about it now. It's a huge regret of mine that I didn't photograph Jude in this style when he was younger. If only I had known about this style then.

Just for comparison, you can see the difference in photographing my son Archer at 3 and also at 7 years old. What a difference 4 years makes when they're growing and changing every day! I love these so much, and I know you will, too.

Q: What do you recommend for clothing?

Classic, timeless styles work best. It will vary depending on age, but I recommend European style children's clothing for the youngest set. Think Peter Pan collars, smocking and embroidery or lace. For older boys, polos or oxford shirts work well. A white cable knit sweater can also be a great choice for boys of any age. For girls, a classic dress, bubble or white shirt with a classic collar is an easy answer. Pale pastels and white work best to keep the focus on the face and the background bright. Locally, Woman's Exchange has perfect options for the littles.

Q: How soon can I book?

It's never too soon! You can absolutely call to see what's available or also be added to the list for future session openings. You will be the first to hear when I open new appointments.

Interested in a timeless, heirloom portrait session at my St Louis portrait studio? Please call us at 314-644-1616.

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