Felix and Josie–Upper West Side Newborn Portraits–New York, NY

SarahGreigPhotography_stomp_1158When one of my best friends decided to have a third baby, she got a great surprise–she was having twins! And not just any twins–boy/girl twins to keep her family as an even split! Did I mention that she was one of my only friends who hadn’t yet defected to the suburbs, our oldest daughters are besties, and she’s the friend that I put on all of my emergency contact forms and call at 3am to come help when I’m in labor? Yup, that kind of friend. She and her husband have been city dwellers for 15 years, from San Francisco to Chicago and then New York, but if you find out you’re going to have four kids in an apartment, I GUESS I can understand moving out of the city. Cue the tears. My only solution to cope with this “tragic for me but happy for them” life event was, of course, to document it!

We did a mini photo session a few weeks before Josephine and Felix arrived. I wanted to document them in their soon-to-be old neighborhood, and we also did a full newborn session when the twins were one month old. Photographing newborns is a lengthy and tricky process, and twins makes it twice as interesting! We were able to balance their feeding/sleeping/crying/diaper change schedule and after much effort, we got some of them sleeping peacefully together. Victory! And even one of Josie smiling in her sleep! The way they snuggle together and intertwine their limbs while sleeping is so sweet.

Needless to say, their mom is my complete hero for handling FOUR children under the age of 5.5 with such grace and patience, all the while buying a house, keeping up her lawyer gig, and moving 2.5 hours away. And doesn’t she look so gorgeous in these images? I’m glad we captured a bit of the fire escape in the background of some images as we used the natural window light–they are their final images of life in the big city. I also love the one with big brother James keeping an eye on things during our session.

K, B, E, J, F & J, there is a gaping hole in our city life without you here, and I stared blankly at the “emergency contact” space on a school form last week for a good long while. Though we know you’ve landed where you should be, we miss you like crazy. XO

 

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And then there were two more redheads!!

Family Photography–East Village, NYC

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I had such a blast working with this family–just look at that laughter above! I’ve known the parents since college (mascots formerly known as Jeffs) and they have now grown to an adorable fam of four. We started our session in their apartment, which I always love to do as it’s comfy and familiar for the kids and I can capture images in their rooms among their favorite toys–in this case, trains, instruments, and play doh.  I’m pretty sure their mom should design for Pottery Barn Kids, Land of Nod, or Serena and Lily, as I adored their bedroom design and it added nice pops of color to our session. These boys have the bluest eyes and the greatest smiles–though I admit that some 2.5 year old smiles were brought to us by our favorite candy, M+M. I also plan to hire these parents as my photo assistants at my next family session–they were that good!

After we captured some great shots with natural window light (including some bed jumping and a guitar serenade), we attempted to head outside to Washington Square Park to photograph the boys at play in the spring greenery…until it started pouring on the quick walk there. Hailing and gusting winds to be exact! We ducked under cover in a huge arch door at Grace Church, and ended up taking a few great shots there and calling it a day. Sometimes the weather takes over the best of plans, but it was a blessing in disguise as the shots in front of this amazing architectural door are unique and beautiful. I love framing children in architectural elements, as it really gives a good sense of their size in comparison to the rest of their world–and here you can see Luke looking so tiny in the gigantic doorway. J, R, L and W, it was a fun morning and I’m so glad to capture these adorable young guys! XO

 

Summer 2016 Session Info

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SUMMER 2016 PORTRAIT PRICING

Summer Session Fee:   $500 ($50 off regular pricing). Up to four people. For larger groups, please inquire

Price includes:

– A 1-hour photo shoot on location

– Custom editing of approximately 40 images*

– An online gallery (live for 3 weeks) for viewing, sharing, and ordering archival prints from a professional lab

*Session fee does not include digital image files; though they are available for purchase separately–$350 for five, $750 for all

SUMMER SPECIAL

All clients who book a Summer Session will receive:

One 8×12 print custom matted in an 11×14” mat ($100 value)

(values are not transferrable to any other product)

FAMILY SESSION INFORMATION

Details: This is a lifestyle session–I want to capture your family’s personality in a natural way. I try to let kids be kids and avoid a lot of formally posed photographs. I aim for real smiles and fun! Visit my blog to see more examples of my style.

Time: To take advantage of the sweetest summer light, I hold portrait sessions 1 to 1.5 hours before sunset.

Place: Any location can be accommodated. A beach, your home, a lighthouse, farm stand, beach club, on a boat or at a marina– you name it!

How to Book Your Session:

  • Secure a date and location with Sarah
  • Fill out a client questionnaire and contract, sign, and return with a 50% retainer fee, payable by check or credit card. Dates cannot be held without payment.
  • The remaining 50% is due 7 days before your session.
  • Get excited for some family fun!

 

Moms and Their Babes–Mother’s Day 2016

SarahGreigPhotography_stomp_1102It’s been a crazy few weeks here! We moved–still in the city, but more to come on that later. I was a puddle of nostalgic tears when we moved out of our home–eight years and two kids later, the move wasn’t pretty. It even involved the infamous “couch doctor” of NYC sawing our couch into parts at 9pm that evening to get it into the new place. My office (yes, a real office with a door that closes!) is a pile of boxes, yet I didn’t want Mother’s Day to slip past without a few images and some thoughts.

When I became a mom five years ago, it was a rough transition. Since I spent a lot of my life either caring for and/or coaching and teaching children, I thought I was pretty equipped for whatever challenges I might face. Which now looking back on, was sort of hilarious to think. I had a really hard time feeding my daughter and it was hell for both of us to get her to gain weight. A few days were great. A lot of days were horrible. I wondered how anyone was equipped to be so selfless and felt really frustrated and defeated at the beginning. Of course things improved and I adore my two girls (my second one had even more issues eating and gaining weight, and if you follow my blog, you’ll know all about that.) The minute I became a mom, I gained a whole new perspective on what my mom had done to raise all four of us, and still wonder how the hell she managed it with such grace, love, and happiness. I feel like I’ll never be as awesome as she was, but she is a great inspiration. She’s the top of Everest, and I’m operating on the Colorado Rockies level, if that.

I photograph a lot of family portraits, and moms often just want me to photograph their children while they remain out the frame. In some ways, this makes the session easier (fewer people to get to look at the camera, parents nervous energy not being passed on), but I always encourage parents to get in a few photos. Your kids will want to see pictures of you with them when they were young. I promise. I LOVE photos of my parents from when I was little. Really,  just get in the picture. I understand the hesitation, because once or twice a year, I force myself to get in front of the camera and do family photos with my children and hubs. It’s not always comfortable, and it can feel awkward. You worry that your hair may not be perfect, that you had some baby weight that you were hoping to lose first, that you have bags under your eyes because one of your children was up all night, etc. But here’s the deal- when you are relaxed with your children and I can capture that moment, you are beautiful. You are mighty. You are their hero. You literally hold other people’s lives in your hands on a daily basis and succeed at the hardest job in the world. And these fleeting moments with your small children are so worth recording.

Here are some of my favorite mom and child captures over the last two years or so. And thank you to Clare Stephens for recording me with my gals, above. Happy Mother’s Day to all. Keep up the good yet seemingly impossible work. And thank you, Mom, for being an inspiration. XO


FIVE–New York, NY

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We’ve got a newly minted five year old in the house. As always on her birthday, I’m writing a few memories and posting a few photos of the wonderful journey in the last year.

CMG,

I wanted you to stay four forever. Four was full of joy and wonder, sparkle, curiosity, independence, laughter, growth, and more. But time marches on and this month you turned five. Five is major. Five years ago I held all 5 pounds and 11 ounces of you in your blue and pink striped hospital swaddle, and now I’ll be waving you off to kindergarten this year. You’re on the edge of so many new experiences.

You emit joy. You are a terrific hugger and hand holder. You bring so much energy and happiness to everything that you do–you are even excited to accompany me to the grocery store or the chiropractor, and you clap your hands about a trip to the dentist. Seriously. I never tire of seeing your exuberance for life as you skip into your classroom every morning after a brief obligatory goodbye, and I love seeing your huge grin when you spot us at afternoon pickup. You love to be busy. You are happiest having a long agenda and a set schedule (we’re soo related). This year we instituted a checklist at bedtime and you love to follow along–pjs, teeth, potty, stories, snuggle. Bedtime is also filled with requests to download what we did for the day and what exact plans are on the horizon– “Can you tell me what we’re doing tomorrow and the next day and the next day and the next day?”

It was another year of growth–physical, emotional, and social. Physically, I can’t keep you in clothes that fit. Your pants and sleeves are always too short as your long limbs continue their march to be taller than I am in a few years. Despite purchasing most of your clothes in blue and green, your favorite colors this year are pink and purple and you’ve taken a liking to dolls and Barbie. Sigh. Your goal this year was for your hair “to grow as long as Rapunzel,” and you’re getting close. Emotionally and socially, you have really matured in the Rainbow Room–you’ve made great strides in learning to take turns and collaborate on projects with your friends. You love school–you mastered writing this year and worked hard on your letters and numbers. You have emerged as a definitive lefty. You write your name on everything, followed by “CMG”. You are dying to read and can “read” a few books that you have memorized. Your vocabulary continues to grow by leaps and bounds every day and your creativity astounds me. You can happily paint and draw all day long, and especially love to create books out of paper and colored tape, complete with pictures and wild stories.

You still love your city. You enjoy taking the express subway, raising your hand to hail a “band” taxi as you call the new van taxis, and navigating your favorite museums with aplomb. You’ve taken an interest in architecture and drawing spaces, right down to the furniture placement.  You love to create buildings with any materials–magnatiles, blocks, and even jam and sugar packets at a restaurant.

You are my favorite sous chef–in addition to watching Giada and Ina, you love to prep recipes and help me cook. You won’t eat most of the food that we cook, but maybe that will come with time. You adore gymnastics–and not just during gym class, as every couch is your trampoline and every elevated curb is your balance beam. You love to dance, especially on top of things–kitchen tables, coffee tables, and couches. Santa brought your first bike this Christmas and you love zipping around the parks with it, creating a streak of hot pink and purple. You’re still very competitive–everything is a race or a contest. While I know this will serve you well in your future athletic endeavors, it still gives me pause. Over the summer you discovered golf, wiffle ball, and competitive bingo. You don’t like to lose. You learned to dive for sticks, swim like a fish, and fearlessly boogie board in the waves.

This past fall you were dragged to many new schools for interviews and play visits as we went through the arduous (and somewhat ridiculous) process that is trying to find a kindergarten seat in New York City. It shouldn’t have surprised me, but your personality was born for this. You loved visiting new schools, checking out their classrooms, meeting new children, chatting/telling your life story to adults that you had never met before, then shaking hands and–completely unprompted by us–asking when you could come back again. It was truly amusing to witness, but it also filled me with pride about your sense of adventure, adaptability, and true excitement for school.

You remain curious and thoughtful. You are a great sister to a hyperactive and wild baby sister who wants nothing more in life than to show her love by destroying your intricate magnatile creations, changing the channel while you’re engrossed in a show, and pulling your hair until you cry. But the way she shrieks and lights up when you enter a room and sweetly calls you “kai-yeeee” must be worth it, no?! You still believe that the earth revolves around your cousins and the state of Connecticut, and it makes me smile to see how important your extended family is to you.

I love you and am really proud of you on a daily basis. I wish time would slow down, but I can’t wait to see what FIVE brings. Just don’t get too much taller this year, ok? Happy 5th.

XO

Past Birthday Reflections:

FOUR

THREE

TWO

ONE

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Top photo by the wonderful Clare Stephens.