Thank goodness, the Washington D.C. meteorologists heard my urgent plea for a blissful September day – because the cooler autumn weather arrived right on cue. I was in the midst of a series of back-to-school mini-sessions, and the Z-P Family was the next up to bat. Jamie and I recently teamed up as co-chairs of the PTA at our children’s school, but this was the first time I got to spend time with the rest of her family – husband, Nate, and their two sons, Walker and Phineas.

As with most every family portrait shoot, there are candid moments that take place both in front of the camera and behind the scenes. In this case, Phineas and Walker staged a protest, making it clear that they were not at all interested in sitting together – even long enough for me to click the shutter button.

Thanks to a little diplomacy from Mom and Dad, we convinced the two boys to sit together for just a moment and suggested that Walker lean in to give his little brother a kiss on the cheek. Thankfully, I managed to snap a few frames before that tiny little kiss became more of a tackle. Boys will be boys, right? And little Phineas held his own, fending off Walker’s advances and teaching all of us the beauty of true spontaneity.

The Zimmerman-Peek Family Portrait

On another note, for any moms seeking wardrobe inspiration for their upcoming family portrait session, Jamie nailed it. She hit that sweet spot between polished looks and letting her family’s authentic personality shine through. It was clear that everyone was comfortable in their outfits and she even managed to incorporate a mix of textures and patterns to help give each photo depth and interest.

As Z-P family portrait shoot came to a close, Phineas and Walker looked up at us with those sweet little boy eyes that beg to be set free to go play for real – without the presence of a photographer snapping away and insisting that they hold still for just a millisecond longer. So while they may not fully understand why we spent the afternoon repositioning ourselves on the picnic blanket, I’m sure they’ll understand when they see their family portrait many years from now. And chances are they’ll still be kissing, hugging, and tackling each other just as they did on this gorgeous September day.

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Julie Kubal family portraits Washington D.C.


About the Author:

Julie Kubal is a child and family portrait artist and photographer serving Washington DC, Maryland, and Northern Virginia. She is passionate about creating warm and meaningful artwork through modern portraits and lifestyle photography at a location of your choice!