A Season Taking Flight: Welcome Baby Audrey | Sarah Gray Photography, Tallahassee, FL newborn and family photographer

Baby number three always rocks the balance of things in a family. The parents are officially outnumbered. When babe #3 is also the first of the opposite gender, something special happens. It seems a new season has arrived. We experienced this change of seasons when our son joined us and his two big sisters. The time before he was born is marked in my mind as a distinctly different time in our family life.

The Clark family welcomed little Audrey to join her two big brothers. The photos of the three of them are some of my favorites.

This session also makes me think of one of my favorite songs from when my oldest daughter was born. Andrew Peterson writes some of the best and anytime I photograph a family welcoming a new baby girl, the lyrics of his song play through my head.  Here is a portion:

“And the leaves were turning gold and brown
And people came from miles around
To see her when she came to town

And then I turned and walked outside
And stood beneath an autumn sky
And felt a season falling
And a new one taking flight

My baby loves me so
She loves me as I am
She lifts her little hands
Her wish is my command
I’ll pick her up forever if I can.”
-Andrew Peterson/Randall Goodgame, My Baby Loves to Dance, from Slugs, Bugs, and Lullabies

Clark family, I pray that you love this new season of your family life.



Baby Kolton | Sarah Gray Photography, Tallahassee, FL, Newborn Family Photography

Sweet, sweet Kolton. You are a doll baby and you are my cousin! We’ve had several new babies in our family this year and to say I’m excited doesn’t do it justice. Round little face, chubby chubby cheeks. I could kiss them all day. I take photos of baby’s toes at every newborn session I do. They are so small, so fully, perfectly formed. Baby toes, and the little wrinkles on the bottoms of their feet just leave me in awe. So much detail. So much perfection in such a small part.  If such care was taken on such an unnoticed detail, imagine the planning that went into the character of each child. I’m amazed every time.

For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be.” -Psalm 139:13-16

Sarah Gray Photography | Tallahassee, FL Newborn Family PhotographerSarah Gray Photography | Tallahassee, FL Newborn Family PhotographerKoltonGlassNewbornWEB-1KoltonGlassNewbornWEB-2Sarah Gray Photography | Tallahassee, FL Newborn Family PhotographerSarah Gray Photography | Tallahassee, FL Newborn Family Photographer

Creativity Trapped

“Every child is an artist.  The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”        -Picasso

This quote resonates with me.  You know that feeling when there’s something you want to do, but simply cannot do?  The feeling that there’s a song inside you that wants to be sung, but you don’t have the words or tune?  I think there’s something to that and I hope I’m not alone.  I love music, singing, photography (duh) and I have for a long time.  As a kid, I was always dabbling in a new instrument.  First it was violin, then clarinet, piano, guitar, and back again to violin (which I still dabble in today). Looking back at my relationship with music, it’s as if it beckons me.  As if there is some part of me that is asleep but wants to be woken up.  Like there’s a voice inside that just HAS to sing and when it can’t, I feel very trapped.  My poor family falls victim to my prison at times as I rearrange the furniture… again.  Tweaking decorations here and there as I go along.  Or painting a chest of drawers on a whim (without moving it from the place it sits and not covering the carpet around it with a drop cloth.  I’m a renegade.  I know it.).  I am so so thankful for my photography.

Sarah Gray Photography | Tallahassee, FL wedding and family photographer - post on creativity

As my business picks up and I am able to share my creativity with others through the lens of my camera, I feel that those prison walls are cracking… the metal bars, weakening.  I can’t help but wonder though, what is it?  What is that feeling?  Why has it been a constant companion through my life?  The more I think about it and the more I study God’s love letter to me and read the writing of other creative believers whom I admire, the closer I come to understanding that I really am made WE really are  made in the image and likeness of God.  Creativity is His trademark. More accurately, He is creativity personified.  He started with creation and hasen’t stopped since.  In fact, he’s busy preparing a place for us now.  So I’m starting to think more and more about this “pull” inside me.  It’s not weird or uncertain.  I know exactly what it is but it’s never satisfied… and I’m thinking it won’t be until that place for me is ready… and I can rearrange furniture in it.

Why Should I Print My Pictures if I Have Them All on Disk?

Why should I print my pictures if I have them all on disk?

Okay, I’m going to really lay out the core of my feelings about the importance of printing your images.  Bear with me as my thoughts unfold.  They might be messy and disorganized but I’ll try my best to convince you why you should print any picture that you value as opposed to only keeping a digital copy.


I get it, okay.  I know it costs money to print pictures.  I know that they take up room and it requires you putting them into photo albums or frames and that can be messy and time consuming.  I get that you’re busy and that your budget may be stretched pretty thin.  I get that it was quite an investment to purchase that disk from your session to begin with, and that you intend on printing those pictures for Christmas gifts for grandparents.

Sarah Gray Photography - Why you should print your pictures

But, here’s the thing… most people don’t end up ever printing their images from the disk they purchased.  They like “just knowing” they’re there and that they have access to them. I get that.  I love knowing that I have all my clients sessions digitally archived from back when I started my business years ago.  I take comfort in that, but if I want to look at those images, it’s pretty time consuming to shuffle through folder upon folder from years past to find what I’m looking for… and I at least have all my files on an external hard drive as opposed to my computer alone!  I have clients who save their session disks in a fireproof safe as an extra precaution (and that’s a really great idea).  However; here’s the other thing about our changing world and the pace at which things progress… digital formats change.  Disks will become (and ARE becoming) more obsolete.  Apple now makes MacBook Pro’s that don’t even have a disk drive.  The “e-world” is moving at an incredible pace and it can be hard to keep up.

Sarah Gray Photography - why you should print your pictures

I mean think about it.  How many 8-track cassettes (they’re called “cassettes,” right?) do you have? … exactly.  And I’ll bet your parents are anxious to get your childhood home VIDEOS converted to DVD as soon as possible. Why?  Because that medium has all but gone by the wayside. “But I have them all on facebook,” you say.  Great!  But what about all the pictures you used to have on myspace?  livejournal?

I hope you’re getting my point.  I think you are.

All this to say that I think there is no greater investment to retain your family history than actual… printed… pictures.  Those things you hold in your hands, organize in an album, frame on your desk and wall.  You send them in cards to family far away and then THEY display them on their refrigerators and think of you and your family every time they make a sandwich.

Sarah Gray Photography - why you should print your pictures

Whenever I go visit family members we flip through old albums and look through family pictures.  I love doing that.  What happens when my mom comes to my house is something more like, “Mom, I want to show you these shots I got of the girls the other day.” (cue me flipping through images on the computer and my mom says…) “Oh, Sarah! I want a PRINT of that!”  You see?  People want tangible.  People want to hold and to touch and to know that if technology fails, they’ll still have the print. Yes, fires and floods happen but not as often as computers crash or disks are scratched.  Your digital files are what photographers call the “digital negatives.”  We all have old family pictures somewhere that we love to look at but we sure don’t know where the negative to that picture is.  Why?  Because that’s not what we want to look at when we want to see the picture.  You see?!?!?!

Sarah Gray Photography - why you should print your pictures

Okay.  I need to stop.  I’m getting a bit feisty and that I try to reserve only for my family and closest friends.  But I think I’ve made my point.  I want you to have PRINTS of those pictures you love so much because really, it’s what I think you ultimately want and I don’t believe I’d be giving you the best custom photography experience if I didn’t implore you to take the time to print the beautiful images from your session.  And, if you want to guarantee that they’ll last as long as your great grandparents portraits did, I’d be happy to print them for you.  My lab guarantees all prints to last at lease 100 years.

Sarah Gray Photography - why you should print your pictures

I leave you with this… these pictures that I most cherish from MY family and childhood.  They’re all throughout this post.  My dad was our family photographer and he did a great job at it.  These pictures embody memories that I have and I LOVE to look at them in the photo albums my mom carefully placed them in when I was young.  I hope we can all pass along albums like that to our children.

Sarah Gray Photography - Why you should print your pictures

Sarah Gray Photography - why you should print your pictures