I snapped these images of Dori and Adam, with sweet Noah, on the brink of the end of one chapter of motherhood and the start of another. The decision of when to ween a breastfed child is so individual, the signs of such different for everyone.
Just the other month we were out to lunch when I took Sonny into the restroom to breastfeed; the distractions at the table proving too much these days for his little wild grabby hands to settle down long enough to get him to latch. Another mom walked in and said, “aw, you shouldn’t have to do that in here”, insinuating that I was in there for privacy reasons instead of trapping a child that’s not as interested in nursing as I’d like him to be sometimes. After explaining this, she said, “maybe it’s time to start weening him”. The words stung because, well, at that time I was not ready to stop nursing. And truthfully, I knew it was just a phase he was going through.
My sessions with Dori and Adam are always natural, centered around conversation first and shooting second; which is truthfully how I prefer to shoot. We talked about the plan to ween and it was evident in how often he made his way back to her breast that Noah was aware of the plan, too.
The closing of some chapters of motherhood are more painful than others. Even when we know we’re making the best decision for us, there are always seeds of doubt, always a grieving period even when the decision is within our control.
So much love to Dori, Adam, and Noah for inviting me in to capture the end of this chapter. Wishing you guys the best on the pages that have yet to be written.
Past sessions with Dori can be viewed here, here, and here.
Rebecca contacted me in the fall of last year, hoping to surprise her husband with some images of her and their new son, Hunter. I met her at their home in Brentwood and was immediately taken back by how young and beautiful she was. I mean she’s stunning, right? We talked a lot about being a first time mom; the curve for her being a bit higher given that much of her family is overseas. And the difficulties of nursing and pumping and all the stuff you don’t really think about before you’re confronted with it as your reality. In any event, it’s always a pleasure to capture moments like these.
Interested in hiring me for a session? Shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
There usually is no rhyme or reason to nerves before a shoot; sometimes I feel total confidence and other times I feel timid about knocking on the front door and inviting myself in to take charge in a home I’ve never been that belongs to people I’ve never met. I didn’t have nerves going into this shoot so much as I felt pressure on myself; Kelsey confiding beforehand that she’s followed my work on instagram for sometime and never imagined actually getting a session with me ::gush gush:: . Though, in hindsight, I like the challenge of living up to a perception someone may have of me (when it’s a good one, of course). In any event, any pressure quickly dissipated; the way it does when met with warmth and sincerity. This family, they’re kind and gentle and bashful and humble and yet, somehow, still natural even with a camera in their faces.
We had plans of heading to the beach for the second half of the shoot but given the unpredictability of the beach weather this time of year, the wind had other ideas and we ended up staying at their house for the full session; which I really think was best anyways. Shooting in-home being far-and-wide my favorite location.
Interested in booking me for a session? Shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
One of these days I’ll get caught up — so many posts in my draft folder, so many sessions waiting to be shared. The holidays got the better of me so several of the sessions I shot during that time are buried somewhere on my hard drive. Who am I kidding, much of what I shot in 2016 is buried. Alas, here is one of a beautiful family on the brink of welcoming their third, shot in their home in Los Angeles.
Interested in booking a session? Email me: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
I used to think that in the photography business, referrals were where it was at. Then I got a few a few referrals and changed my mind completely. It’s a totally different experience shooting someone that is familiar with your work versus someone who only hired you because their friend said you were good.
Tish has been a long-time supporter of my work and I think this shoot goes to show the value in that. She gave me just what I always yearn to receive and she did so effortlessly. It was such an easy and carefree session filled to the brim with love.
The Carlson Family, Arizona
You can see Tish’s work by clicking here.
Anne Rivera, on the process of wet plate collodion photography, “My camera is from the turn of the century and keeping with the traditions of the past, I use all natural light. There is no adjustable aperture and no shutter, so all exposure time must be done by keeping the lens open to light while the subject remains still for an extended time. I truly believe the lens captures something magical in that long exposure time, something that comes across through the eyes of the subject that can’t be reproduced through any other type of photography”.
You can check out more of her work by clicking here and learn more about Anne herself by clicking here. And you may spy Hooper and I up in the top corner. Always grateful to be on the receiving end of gifts from talented friends.
Two hour session
Includes both in-home and on-location shooting
All edited high resolution images with print release
One hour session
Includes either in-ihome or on-location shooting
All edited high resolution images with print release
*these discounted rates are good for bookings made this week only
Not in the SoCal area? I’m hoping to do some travel sessions in the summer / fall of 2017 to Seattle / PNW, New York, San Francisco
“The Untitled Underwear Project is a photographic and cinematic exploration of the lives we lead in our underwear. It began simply, with the goal of capturing people in their more unguarded states in a way that felt real and intimate; moments normally reserved for your best friends, your lovers, your family. I wanted the photos to be beautiful but also to eschew strictly traditional concepts of beauty, to find subjects spanning diverse ranges of age, race and gender.
I thought it would take a few months. It turned into a few years. As time went on it evolved and grew and what I hope it’s become is a celebration of humanity. Everything that being half-naked implies — the liberating, the banal, the romantic, the solitary, the sexy, the domestic, the moments we live for and the details in between.
I’m sure it’s not perfectly comprehensive, nothing ever is, but I’m happy with it. And I’m happy for all that it’s taught me. This was my first photography project. And I don’t think it will be my last. Thanks for lending your eyes.” – Josh Soskin
You can check out more images from the project by clicking here. And just when I didn’t think the images couldn’t get any better, I saw the film…
Josh Soskin | Director | Photographer
I’ve opted to push off all my travel sessions until next year, much to my own dismay. I think we all have a knack for putting more on our plates than we can consume. My back and neck nearly started screaming at even the notion of me traveling anywhere, on my own, with all my gear and a baby in tow. I figure next year, when Sonny doesn’t require feedings every couple of hours, will be better. Thank you to all who reached out, I think I’ve sent each and everyone of you personal emails but if I missed someone, my apologies. Please keep an eye out next spring or summer, when I hope to give it all another go. And if you’re local to Southern California and looking to have your family photographed, by all means, shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
There are certain people that you meet in life that fill your cup; some are lucky enough to remain permanent fixtures and provide the refill when needed, others come and go but regardless of the fleetingness of it all you feel grateful to have met at all. That’s what this family was to me: a cup filler. The kind of love that fooled you into thinking emotions are tangible.
Coleen won me over immediately; offering the warmest of hugs and the coldest of beers. And the love affair grew from there. Carefree and full of the kind of beauty that runs deep into the bones. I learned of all the similarities we share, including a love for photography (as a side note, y’all should check out the non-profit she co-founded — Spectrum Inspired) as well as careers in nursing. Never mind the fact we both wait for our toenails to grow out after getting a pedicure in lieu of taking the time to use nail polish remover.
But what really blew me away about this family was the love they had for each other. You could feel it in every little interaction and you could feel the reciprocation of such from their children; something I honestly always wonder about because the good Lord knows my boys tell me they hate me often enough to make me wonder what the hell I’m doing wrong. I’m not sure what it is they’re doing right, all I know is they’re doing it right. And whatever they’re on, I want.
Sure, Coleen earned major bonus points when a huge wave hit and she went lunging for my camera bag over her children, but that’s besides the point. More to the point, I made the drive home – eager to return to my sweet Sonny (who doesn’t hate me) – feeling fulfilled.
Many thanks, Coleen & Scott, for incorporating me into your vacation plans and for letting me take a peek into what a well-run family looks like. I’d be scared to have you witness what goes on in my home and will be consulting the notes I took during our shoot.
Interested in hiring me for a session? Shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
“It happened by chance. In 2000, I tagged along with a good friend on a two-week trip to Cuba. I took my 35mm camera and a bunch of film. The first thing I noticed in Havana was that the city was dark at night. There were no streetlights, porch lights or living-room lamps. It was pitch black except for the faint colorful glow spilling out of open doors everywhere, and it came from the TVs. The light captivated me. For the next two weeks I wandered around, slipping in and out of strangers’ living rooms. Each time I came across an open door and a working TV set, I would ask if I could take a picture of it. The answer was always yes. Nobody seemed to think it was an odd request and it was usually accompanied by a Cuban coffee or rum.
There were some fascinating developments in the living rooms of Old Havana. Many of the sets that I saw in 2000 — 1980s Russian models and mid-century TVs from the U.S. — had been replaced with shiny new imports from China. The cheap, new TVs were surrounded by the same vintage fans, rickety ornaments and faded family photographs. It seemed the only thing that had changed was the TV itself.
In Cuba, TV seems to carry even a weightier cultural role than it does in the U.S. During broadcast hours in Cuba, all TVs are on. The TV is on during the day, when it is background noise or the main event. At night, each airing of the latest telenovela is like a sacred viewing party when friends and neighbors gather. My sense is that watching TV is a cherished activity that everyone looks forward to, especially when favorite telenovelas and Hollywood movies are aired. …
The stories that I take from Havana are mainly in the photographs. I was welcomed without hesitation into so many living rooms, which is telling of the openness and generosity of the people I met. My living room stays were often brief, as I don’t speak much Spanish. The encounters consisted of animated gestural exchanges fueled by the ubiquitous cafe Cubano, almost always offered by my host.
People introduced me to family members in framed photographs who had left for the U.S., and who remained perched on top of the TV set. I often watched a little TV with my hosts in between making photographs, because it was a shared experience and almost a form of communication, as we could all react to the broadcast. After a final smile and thank you, I would take off down the street in search of another glowing TV set and an open door.”
Simone Lueck | Cuba TV
San Francisco | August 11 – 16
Seattle/PNW | September 8 – 13
New York | October 5 – 11
One hour in-home shooting
There will be one slot for a one hour on location (outdoor) session per day (first come, first serve)
Price includes all edited high resolution images with print release (approximately 100 images)
I met the Fischer family here, in San Clemente, at a home they’ve been renting for the last several months in an attempt to escape the winter in their hometown of Colorado. I suppose I use the word ‘hometown’ freely because if you entered into conversation with these guys, you’d quickly learn that they’ve lived all over the place. All of us here in San Clemente were lucky to have them for the (relatively) short time they were here; myself, a bit bummed I didn’t run into them a earlier in their stay. I mean three kids nearly mirroring the ages of my own not to mention a dog; and an anxious one at that. One that, not unlike Jimmie, you could hear yelping from the window after we left for a walk down to the beach. We actually got the dogs (and kids) together a few days later and despite Van stepping on a cactus, all had an enjoyable time.
In any event, we spent some time playing inside, the boys quick to show off their legos, shoot me with their guns, and engage in a throwing-stuffed-animal fight. It was like I never left home. Later we made the short walk to the beach, the coastline covered in a heavy marine layer with June gloom inviting itself in just in time for this lovely family to pack up their car and make the trek back to Colorado, where hopefully the sun was waiting for them.
Interested in hiring me for a shoot? Send me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
Anytime I get to catch up with Dori is time well spent. The last time I photographed her and Noah together was when Noah was just a few months shy of one year old and now, nearly a year later, on the brink of his second year. It’s always a privilege to capture the relationship between mother and child, even more so the second time around; the juxtaposition with the year prior showing the growth of not only a growing little human, but also in the roles of mother and child. The way she speaks to him in her native Hungarian, the way he asks to breastfeed and the way she plays with his toes while he does.
You can check out past sessions with Dori by clicking here and here. And you can check out Tribe de Mama, which she founded, by clicking here.
Interested in hiring me for a session? Email me: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
I received an email from Anne-Marie stating that her and her family would be in town to visit friends; they are from back East. My heart was warmed immediately; to be included in a family’s vacation plans? To say it’s an honor is an understatement. We toyed around with meeting up in the desert but Anne-Marie is more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kinda mama, which I love, and ultimately I ended up meeting them at their friend’s beautiful home in the heart of Venice.
Her husband Jay was equal parts relaxed and kind, their daughter Masie perfectly adapted to their spontaneous lifestyle (they’ve already traveled with her to several countries, which I think is so wonderful). We spent some time in-home, where Masie got some ballet lessons from Willow (Anne-Marie used to nanny Willow in Willow’s younger years, which I also think is so beautiful and added to the richness of the shoot).
We finished the shoot on the beach, the setting sun behind the mountains serving as a picturesque backdrop to their California holiday. Memories I can only hope they treasure for all the years to come in spite of all the new memories they’re sure to make, being the adventurous family that they are.
Interested in booking a session? Shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com.
When I arrived to Jamie and Ben’s home, the screen door was shut and I locked eyes with the most welcoming and brilliant smile from sweet baby Townes. He’s seven months old and apparently is stoked by the idea of strangers showing up on his doorstep. Scratch that, this baby is stoked on life in general because I got nothing but wide eyes and smiles for my entire time there. I’m sure Jamie and Ben could tell you about the sleepless nights and other hardships that come along with an infant, but you won’t get anything but good cheer out of me. Seriously, how cute is he? Rhetorical question because I’m pretty sure he’s cuter than my own kids.
I met the Street family in their home in San Diego, a quaint bungalow-style home decorated beautifully. We spent most of the time indoors, catering to the typical needs of two youngsters: snacks, favorite records, pillow fights, breastfeeding, and some good old-fashioned cuddles, along with some time in their backyard, where Henry was hard at work gardening. And when I say gardening, what I really mean is destroying plants because that’s what little boys do, right?
The entire shoot was perfectly carefree, an ease that comes when photographing another photographer, I suppose (you can check out Jamie’s work here and find her on instagram here).
Interested in hiring me for a session? Shoot me an email: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com. You can also check out my website for more information.
I met the Gulas family at their home in Queen Creek, Arizona, which was an added treat to our most recent visit to the area, back in February. I love photographing somewhere different and the desert landscape did not disappoint. Nor did the beautiful Gulas family, who just added their fourth babe to the mix, and who checked many of my proverbial boxes: large family (yay for more chaos), breastfeeding (my latest obsession in terms of photography), maternity (because it’s close to home and I’m “feelin’ it”), and well, as mentioned, Arizona (something out of my norm).
We spent the first part of the shoot in-home, capturing some candid moments as well as some posed family portraits — I’ve learned to welcome both in my shoots because the reality is that if it were strictly candid, you’d never get a family of this size all in the same frame. Chances are Tatum, who is 14, would be hiding out in her room like I’m sure most 14-year-olds do. We ventured out, just before sunset, to the Salt River; a place I’ve been numerous times now and love more and more with each visit. We shot until all the people that were there when we got there had left along with the last bit of light. I swear the light seems to linger just a bit longer in Arizona. And those colors? They rival even California’s palette. Or perhaps it’s just the change that is nice. Whatever the case may be, it was a beautiful session, with a family I hope to have the pleasure of photographing again.
Interested in hiring me for a session? Email me: ashleyjennett @ gmail.com. You can also find more information by visiting my website.
Mothers of the universe,
Daughters of the earth,
Sisters of the divine consciousness:
We hold the light of our past.
We are the women who create our future.
We are all MAMA.
I had the honor of shooting the cover for Tribe de Mama’s online magazine, you can download it for free…
Tribe de Mama | Rebirth
Bethlehem, West Bank
Hidalgo, MexicoGujarat, India
A while back, I wrote a post that may be one of the ones I hold most dearest to my heart to this day – The Overprotected Child – which highlighted the change in how children have come to play and interact with their environment over the years. You can read the original post by clicking here. In any event, play has always been a subject that interests me and whenever I travel, I always try to make my way to the schoolyards… I’ve photographed kids from Thailand, Belize, Cuba, and India, to name a few.
Photographer James Mollison recently published a series of photographs in a book called Playground, “inspired by memories of his own childhood and his interest in how children learn to negotiate relationships and their place in the world through play. For each picture, Mollison sets up his camera during school break time, making multiple frames and then composing each final photograph from several scenes, in which he finds revealing ‘play’ narratives. With photographs from rich and poor schools, in countries including Argentina, Bhutan, Bolivia, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Nepal, Norway, Sierra Leone, The United Kingdom, and the U.S., Mollison also provides access for readers of all ages to issues of global diversity and inequality”.
You can learn more abut his work by clicking here.