She’s from Vietnam, he’s from California. They met as students at UT and fell in love with each other and Austin. Three years ago, they put a love lock on the pedestrian bridge and then moved away from their favorite city for work. Over Labor Day weekend, they came back for what she thought was just a visit. They walked the bridge at sunset and searched for their lock. Then he asked her to marry her and she said yes.
I was so honored to be asked to capture this surprise proposal and am so excited to finally share my favorites from this awesome session. Congrats, Anthony & Dung!
In my work, I am given access to some of the most intimate moments in a family’s life. As a documentary photographer & a human who gets emotionally involved and cries too easily (for example, when I cried on the side of the road holding the bird I accidentally hit & killed, for like 20 minutes while people were commuting to work), I am often at odds with myself. It is a privilege and honor to be in invited into my clients lives but man, it is so hard to hold back the ugly crying I feel surfacing all of the time.
This job was one of my favorites of both my career & life. This sweet momma of three children, ages 10-15, was marrying a man who she met while they were both 3rd grade teachers at the same school and who used to teach both of her sons. A man who is not just committing himself to this incredible woman and mother, but to these children as well. On a early Monday morning, this family of 5, their pastor & myself, gathered at their new home & ate breakfast tacos & Mexican wedding cookies together. We talked about our children & our lives & connections to NYC & Iowa (two of my favorite places on this earth).
Before they sent their youngest outside to cue up the iPod that softly played Cat Power, Amanda led her three children into her bedroom & I quietly followed. The boys sat on the bed & fidgeted with their clothes while Clara, their daughter, sat poised on a chair. Her ten years seeming like 30 in that moment. Amanda tells each child that she loves them with her whole heart & then whispers a personal message to each before giving them a kiss on the lips. She remarks at how beautiful Clara is & asks her sons if they see it too. They grunt in the way of 12 & 15 year old boys & she gently corrects them & says “you always tell your sister that she is beautiful”. Without hesitation or shame, they do. It is at this moment, I am fighting tears, and I see that Amanda is too. She then grabs my shoulders & thanks me for being a part of this day & envelopes me in the most genuine hug.
It’s these moments that feed both sides of me. I don’t take this life or my clients for granted, thank you for allowing me to witness such beauty.
Happy 50th Anniversary to this lovely couple! Their daughter in law so was so thoughtful to gift them with a family portrait session to celebrate half a century and three generations of love. Here are some of my favorites from this intimate session in Leander, TX.
I was so happy when the Houston’s, former Austinites who have recently relocated to Tennessee, let me know they were coming back to town and wanted me to take their family portraits. With three gorgeous children and a whole lot of love, this was one of my favorite sessions to date.