Bluebonnets were tough this year. The patch behind our house was a little sparse and our weekends were jam packed in March. I was running out of time, so I finally took the kiddos out for pictures one day after school. It was way too bright and 3:30 is a pretty miserable time for my youngest, but I didn’t want to risk not getting a our traditional picture this year. So here was our bluebonnet shot of 2014. But since they were already dressed and ready for pictures, we decided to move to better lighting and at least get a nice spring time picture, even if it was missing the Bluebonnets.
I’ve talked about Bluebonnet pictures being a yearly Texas Tradition a couple times now. In 2013 I was excited to take Monkey #3’s first pictures in the Bluebonnets. For a camera toting mama, she was at an absolutely magical age… whenever she saw my camera she did a big old “CHEESE” smile. I have some really fun pictures from about 6-12 months. We did these right behind my house again this year.
As I’ve mentioned before taking pictures in the Bluebonnets is a Texas Tradition, unfortunately 2011 was a really bad year for Bluebonnets because of the extreme drought conditions. Thankfully, the Bluebonnet patch behind our house made it’s triumphant return in 2012. I remember my son being really uncooperative that year and my daughter had a bright pink cast on her right arm from monkey bar fall earlier that month. Not to mention we were having professional wild flower pictures taken by Allison Notgrass from Focal Point Photographics later in the month. So I didn’t take many pictures that year. This was my favorite of the few I took. It was really bright that afternoon, so I had a hard time with the exposure, I was also trying to shoot around the cast. It’s not my best work, but as always, I’m more worried about capturing that moment in time. So despite the shadows and washed out background, I love the sweet looks on their faces and the way my daughter is snuggled up to her little brother.
I am Michigan born and raised, but followed my career aspirations to Texas over a decade ago. My kids are Native Texans and as Native Texans it is required of them to be photographed in a field of Bluebonnets every spring (and personally, I love the tradition). We’re really lucky to have a beautiful patch of Bluebonnets sprout up right behind our house every year.
The Monkeys were 3 1/2 and 2 this year. It felt impossible to get a picture of the two of them looking at me and smiling. This was the closest I got. However, going back and looking at the pictures from that day again, there were a lot of great ones that I dismissed because one kid or the other wasn’t looking. Four years later, a shot of one kid smiling and another playing with a flower or making a goofy face, is something I’m glad I kept and didn’t erase.
Speaking of “goofy faces” this is so stereotypical of my son… always a ham! This shoot was one of the first times I tried to play with manual settings, and unfortunately I wasn’t checking my image monitor enough. I screwed up the white balance and over exposed about 2 dozen pictures of my son with beautiful, genuine smiles. In the end I still got this big laugh, so all was good.
My daughter LOVED the Bluebonnets this year! She kept picking them and saying that she wanted them to be her “wedding flowers”. I later learned that picking Bluebonnets (the Texas State Flower), is apparently illegal, so we won’t be having a Bluebonnet wedding bouquets in the future. I’m hoping anyone seeing these pics will let this one infraction slide ;-). Anyhow, I got a million great shots of her that day, but these were my favorites.