When our children are born we are overwhelmed with joy and happiness. We are surrounded by love – from friends, family, each other. That time is surreal … it goes by very quickly and is a total blur. If you, like me, can’t remember much from that time, it’s wonderful to be able to look back through photographs and remember those blurry moments.
When our son was about 6 weeks old, his grandparents came to visit. I wanted to get some professional photos taken of the family, and reached out to Jen of All That Jazz Photography. Jen and I had met a couple years earlier at a networking event – before I had a kiddo – but she was so pleasant and bubbly, and her photos so amazing, that she was first to my mind for getting pictures taken. We made our appointment, and headed out to her home studio in Hillsboro, quite a haul with a kid who hated being in the car. But seeing Jen’s smiling face as we entered her home studio made it all worthwhile! From beginning to end, that first shoot with her was incredible. She even made my in-laws comfortable and we got some great shots of Marshall at 6 weeks. And we knew we had found our family photographer.
For the first year of Marshall’s life, we went out to see Jen every month, as we documented the first year of our beautiful son’s life. Her studio, which is in the garage of her home, is warm and inviting – and filled (to the brim) with every kind of prop you can imagine! From old cars and tricycles, to baskets and fireplaces. From chickens and trains, to teddy bears and balls. She also has an ever changing selection of backdrops, from beaches and starry nights, to colorful artwork and patterns. Over that year, we did it all! Marshall learned to sit up, crawl, stand up and cruise. We threw balls, played with trains, hugged monkeys, sat in eggs, dressed up, and drove cars. And in the middle was Jen – capturing it all.
Jen is not your typical “studio” photographer. The passion, energy and silliness that she brings to her photo shoots, light up the room. The personalization she brings to her art shows in the images she captures. And the giggles she gets are real. While it can be frustrating to be the mother of a kid who just doesn’t smile in pictures, Jen never pushed to get him to smile, she just embraced who he was … and is. Every shoot was a total blast. We all left with sore cheeks from laughing and exhausted from the excitement of it all!
We stopped going to see Jen as often after Marshall turned one, and now only make it out about once a year for our annual family photo – which always make it onto our holiday cards. This year, we had a blast with Jen for Marshall’s third birthday, doing an outdoor shoot with her around Portland – rockin out, seeing trains, and playing in the park! The photos she got are priceless!
Ali and I also used All That Jazz Photography when we wanted some professional images of us for our website relaunch in July of 2011. They also do maternity, senior and pet portraits, as well as engagements and weddings.