Kent, Washington Senior Session ~Alisa

Alisa is an amazing woman.  She is finishing high school and her second year of college at the same time.  Even more amazing is that Alisa, “Leese” as her family calls her, is the editor of the college news paper.  Alisa wants to be a journalist when she is through with her education.  She is also a fabulous play write having written and performed in her youth groups production at her church.  She is super talented.

One of Leese’s loves is to gaze at the stars.  She has a telescope she uses and sometimes hooks her camera up to the eyepiece to give us all a glimpse of what is going on in the heavens.  Here favorite summer pastime is volunteering at the Seattle Aquarium.

Kathy, Leese’s mom, went with us on the senior session to places that would document Leese’s growing up period.  We traveled over to Gig Harbor to a place where Leese’s and her siblings met up with her Grandma and Grandpa  on a docked boat and stayed a week or so and learned how to sail and other activities.  This day the air was cold and the water glassy and only one boat on the dock–the caretakers.  It was so quiet and so beautiful there was a temptation to stay awhile.

Leese and her telescope.  There was a beautiful cloudy sky behind her with sun rays poking down through them.  I was hoping to use that as a background for the telescope shot.  Shooting into the light is always difficult and to keep Leese in the light I had to over expose for the sky –so I lost the detail.  I think that if I bracketed the shot–taken three or more images at different exposures including over exposing and underexposing I could have combined them and had that beautiful sky behind Leese.  Also, I could have exposed for the sky and used a flash to lighten up Leese.  The only good thing about hind sight is that you learn from it.

In the same area as the telescope but the light is falling on Leese now.  Gig Harbor–Tacoma Yacht Club out post.  The water had a mirror finish to it.

I shot through some plants to give the soft vignette to the at the bottom –I love the warmth of sepia tones.Leese is very adventuresome and did not hesitate when her mom and I coaxed her to climb through some sticker weeds to get down by the water.  She hardly had a place to sit. You can see how beautiful the water was.I wanted to get an image that tells a little bit about Leese’s love for books and that she some of her summers with her grandparents. While it is not summer–but a cold spring morning, Leese still put on a sundress–she never did go back to her sweatshirt–she told us “it isn’t cold out”.  Didn’t take my Northface off to find out.This is one of my favorite images of Leese.  She was just spontaneous.  Those are the best images I have–the real deal.Another candid of blue bubble gum. This tree grew at such a delightful angle that it begged to be used in a photo.  A perfect place to stop and relax.  This tree was great for a posed image–what I didn’t think about is shooting from ALL  angles.  Kathy brought her camera and got a stunning image from a different pov and I learned from that.  Kathy is naturally creative and we both share the fact that we are divergent thinkers–which is very typical and a help to creative people.Kathy set up this shot–she is really quite talented.  Leese is sitting on a rock directly below the gang plank.

I like this image–Leese seems so relaxed even though we are doing a lot of shots.  This is desaturated–I liked the way that her eyes were still so intense in spite of the faded color.

We are now at Point Defiance Park.  Another tree just begging to be used.  It has just the perfect little curve in the trunk to be used as a seat.  I was dealing with bright sunlight and trying my best to keep the shadows at bey.  We asked Leese to walk across some water on stepping stones–tiny little stones and she just went for it.I needed lighting on Leese to make this shot really work well.  She is under the shadow of a tree.  I included it because it is such a beautiful setting.I had Leese squat down in a tulip garden.  Her mom held a gold reflector.  I like the way the reflector warmed the skin and took care of the shadows over the face.I love this image as it really shows how beautiful Leese is.  I used a gold reflector to throw light on her face.  the gold mixed with the blue in her eyes added reflection of the yellow flowers gave Leese’s eye a green tone–I like it.Same area–just sitting on the fence with that awesome mass of tree limbs as  background.Leese has learned Japanese in her school years and wants to use it sometime in her future–so she wanted to include some shots at the Japanese Garden.It is getting more difficult to keep the shadows from making designs all over her face.  It is near noon–not the best time of day to shoot–but it can’t be avoided–my goal is to be able to shoot in the bright sun as well as great conditions.  It is necessary.Here I used the reflector–but Leese’s eye were super sensitive to the light–I had her close her eyes and then on the count of three open them This image was taken with the sun behind her and I have a little sun flare on her cheek–then desaturated.Another location on the beach along Commencement bay.The sun is so bright now–it is getting more difficult to shoot what I want.One thing that can save a shot you want when dealing with the bright sun is to shoot in black and white.  One of my favorites.  Leese rarely busted open with a full smile–not even in her mom’s photo album.  She is stunning.  The sun was clouded over just for a few minutes and the light was coming behind and up high.  I knew I could get a pretty shot without pronounced shadows just at this time. I don’t remember what make Leese smile so engagingly .  I just love this image.I spotted this building when we got out of the car–so on the way back–I asked “Just one more shot—Pleeeeeeese?”  she got animated at that point and I caught it–this is the fun side of Leese.I enjoy senior sessions.  I love teenagers–they are the most fascinating people on earth.

I learn so much each time I shoot and by sharing the things I learn I hope others learn as well.  I am forever studying other photographers and what they know and are willing to share.  I know that my clients are satisfied with their images and I hope to do sessions with them again.  Please leave a comment here if you visited–I would love to know.

Thanks for stopping by.

About ~ ~ joanne.thomas.photographer~~

I am retired, starting a new career. I love shooting portraits. People are so fun and interesting--I try to bring out there personalities and capture them in images. Children are especially interesting little people, who love to tell you all they know and are so uninhibited. I enjoy shooting weddings to capture all the details and emotions of the day. Between photo sessions I keep shooting --to learn, to experiment--to create art. The industry is ever evolving and I want to give my clients the most exciting and lasting images, full of their love of life expressing their personality.
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2 Responses to Kent, Washington Senior Session ~Alisa

  1. Digital Gold says:

    She’s beautiful and she makes for a great model. One thing I love about your portraits is that you take the time to find out what interests (i.e. golf, guitar, star gazing, etc) your subject has and you incorporate it into the shoot. The use of props really does help tell the story of your subjects.

    Fantastic work Joanne!

  2. Sharon says:

    Beautiful senior portraits. Well done!!

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