photographysimply joyful moments

5 Reasons to Take Fall Family Portraits

Can you guys believe that it’s already almost mid August?!? So many kids (including my own 4) had their first day of school this week, Pumpkin Spice Lattes are coming back to Starbucks in just a couple weeks, and stores are in full fledged fall mode. And can you feel the slightest little chill in the air?? Ok maaaaaybe that’s pushing it since it is 97 degrees outside right now haha 🙂

But regardless of it still being August, the fall season is creeping up fast and will be here before we know it! Yep, that’s right, it’s almost time for flannels and leggings and apple cider scented candles… and fall family portraits! Fall is SUCH a wonderful time to update your family pictures that are hanging on your walls (or if you don’t have ANY hanging yet, then this is the PERFECT time to get some done!)

Don’t believe me? Need some nudging? Well here are 5 reasons why fall is a great time to book those family portraits!

1. It’s FINALLY cooling down.

Yeah I said it. I know it’s hard to imagine anything other than these 90+ degree muggy sunny summer days right now, especially if you live in the deep south, but those cooler fall temps and even *gasp* chilly fall mornings will be here before we know it. This lets you take portraits without your face literally melting off and your hair poofing up from humidity.

2. Cuuuuute clothes!!

Let’s face it… fall clothes are SO stinkin cute!!! Chunky sweaters, knee high leather boots, sweater dresses for little girls and button-up long sleeved plaid shirts for boys… perfect for portraits! Plus all the soft neutrals and bold autumn jewel tones add the perfect pop to your pics.

3. All the pretty colors!

I mean who doesn’t think a maple tree in the fall turning from bright greens to warm yellows and fiery red oranges isn’t one of the prettiest things ever?!? And yes, I know here in Georgia we don’t get as many trees changing colors as say, Vermont, and the fall season is later and shorter than other places… but that doesn’t mean that we don’t get some pretty amazing changing leaves here. I have several spots that I love to use that have incredible colorful leaves during late fall.

4. Earlier sunset means no more missing bedtime for the littles.

Photographers know that the best light is usually the hour prior to sunset. In the summertime, when sunset is as late at 9 or 10pm in some places, that means a very late start to an outdoor session. This can often mean trying to give your little one a late nap or trying to keep them up past their bedtime. Often this can lead to meltdowns and crying, and the kids usually aren’t that happy about it either. 😉 Suffice to say, a session at 4 or 5pm usually works out better for most kiddos and families.

5. The MOST amazing warm golden Autumn light.

If only I could describe to you my love for autumn golden light. It’s right up there with SoCal mexican food or a Friday night Friends marathon. There is just something magical about the evening light in fall… the way it glows even more gold than normal, the way it wraps everything in warmth as it reaches through the trees and falling leaves. I always say I wish I could bottle it up and use it year round 🙂

So there you have it. Five pretty awesome reasons why fall is the perfect time to update your family portraits… or have some taken for the first time. Let’s get those moments and memories documented so that way you have them to look back on forever. Your kiddos will never be as little as they are right now, so bring the fall magic to them. Let them throw those leaves in the air and run through that incredible golden light in their adorable sweaters and dresses.

Reach out and book that family session. You’ll be glad you did.

It’s finally HERE! Brand new website, and why I decided to redesign it

I’m so unbelievably excited that the new website is finally DONE and ready to share with the world!! The entire site has been completely redesigned, with YOU in mind! I wanted to make the new site streamlined and easy to navigate, and also true to the SJM brand.

If you are a past client, you may see one or more of your images throughout the site. It was so fun going back through past sessions and getting to see all your precious faces again!

session information and online booking

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a Simply Joyful Moment’s client? Want to know what to expect before, during and after your session? Now there is a TON of info about all of that and more! You can find pricing information and even book your session online right now! There is also a frequently asked questions page with even more info. And if you still can’t find the answer to your question or if you just want to say hi, you can send me a quick message, and I will get back to you super soon. 🙂

client reviews

I am proud to say that client referrals are my largest source of new clients, and that is definitely what I strive for! I aim to make the entire process smooth, easy, and enjoyable. I not only want to provide clients with high quality when it comes to the photographs I take, but also in the service I provide. You can go to the client review section and read about what some recent clients have to say about their experiences.

portfolio pages

Now it is easier than ever to view my portfolio and see the style of images I like to capture. From maternity, newborn, milestone, and family sessions, each category has its own page where you can see multiple images from recent sessions.

all about the studio

Did you know that Simply Joyful Moments now has a 700 sq ft studio in historic Uptown Columbus?? The studio has a dedicated office space for consultations and gallery reveals, two separate shooting spaces, a comfortable seating area, coffee and snack bar, a full collection of maternity gowns (that all SJM maternity and newborn clients get to use for FREE!), and two full walls filled with newborn props, outfits, wraps, headbands, hats and blankets. You can read all about it and even see some pictures from a peek inside. I’d love to have you stop by and say hi!

and so much more!

The site is full of beautiful imagery and of course a ton of details about my sessions. (There’s even a new About Me page where you can learn all about me – my not-so-little family, things I’m obsessed with, and even how I got started in this crazy world of photography!)

New blogs will also be released weekly with helpful content, information, and of course super cute snuggly babies! 🙂 Make sure you’re on the SJM email list so you never miss a blog post and be first to know about any giveaways, specials, or VIP offers I send out!

I’d love to have you take a look around the site and let me know what you think!

Baby plans: what are the best ages to photograph milestones at?

With so many Baby Plans and Pinterest posts out there these days, I get this question all the time from new and expecting parents: What ages/stages should we schedule milestone portraits at?

Documenting the 4 main stages in your baby’s first year is the best way to truly capture all the ages and milestones that your little one goes through. This is the best way to ensure you don’t miss anything , and also makes sure that you aren’t spending extra money and time photographing baby monthly if they haven’t changed all that much yet.


NEWBORN

The first age that should be documented is the NEWBORN. That typically is when baby is about 7-21 days old. They are still so brand new, so sleepy and snuggly. We can get those suuuuper squishy and adorable posed shots that everyone loves. This age is a can’t miss, and if there is one stage in baby’s first year that you absolutely should capture, it’s for sure this one. They will never be this small again, and do yourself a favor and have some images taken with YOU in them as well. I promise you that you won’t regret seeing how tiny they were in your arms. As your kids grow, they will love looking back and looking and pictures of you holding them when they were so little.




TUMMY TIME

The next age that is perfect for a milestone session is the TUMMY TIME stage. This is usually about 3-4 months, when babies are typically very smiley and interactive with their eye contact. They can’t yet sit on their own or crawl away, but they chew on their fingers, grab their toes, can hold their head up during tummy time, and much more. These are so much fun to document and always look back on. Their expressions and gummy grins make the perfect milestone images for this age.




SITTER

The next stage that is perfect for a milestone session is the SITTER stage. This is usually about 6-7 months old. Babies this age can sit independently and love to babble and laugh. Some are even crawling and rolling, which make for super fun sessions! 🙂 This age is one of my very favorites to capture. Babies are usually so happy and full of smiles, and love to be photographed. These sessions are usually full of singing and clapping, and of course lots of giggles!





ONE YEAR

The final big milestone in baby’s first year is of course their ONE YEAR session! These sessions are usually when baby is about 11-12 months old, and little ones are usually standing, cruising, and some are even walking. These of course are such great milestones to capture and really show how much your little one has grown over the past year!



Of course birthday cake smash sessions are also super fun! This is a great way to incorporate balloons, decorations, and a cute smash cake into the session. Watching baby dig into their cake for the first time is always adorable, especially when they get really into it and end up super messy! 🙂 This type of session makes a great ending to baby’s first year, and these images are perfect to use for their birthday party invitations or even to decorate baby’s first birthday party with!



I offer several different Grow With Me packages to help you document your baby’s milestones and stages. All packages include a beautiful custom heirloom album with images from each of your sessions. Maternity sessions can also be added to these packages to complete your baby’s story.

Interested in booking your baby’s sessions? Send me a quick note, and I’d love to chat with you more!

When should you book your newborn portraits?

The simple answer is… as far in advance as you can. Realistically though, I know that finding a newborn photographer is not at the very top of the list for most people. You have to find an OB or Midwife, decide what hospital you want to birth at or if you would like a homebirth, figure out baby’s name, etc. And as you get further along in your pregnancy, the to-do list can keep getting longer and longer (and trust me, I have 4 kids, and I definitely know how that feels! lol)

I also know that once your baby is born, you’ll be so infatuated with him or her and also be focused on resting, nursing, and figuring out how to get into a routine with your new baby and possibly your older children as well. Selecting a photographer might not be top of mind then also.
 
 
That’s why it’s best to book your baby’s photo session between two and four months before your estimated due date. Booking at least 2 months in advance will secure your newborn on my schedule, ensuring that even during the busy times you will have a space on my calendar. This will allow us to meet up to go over everything for your session, plan color schemes and poses, and even allow you to look and feel all the high quality products I offer, from heirloom albums to canvas wall galleries. I want to help you from start to finish, and tell your baby’s story in the perfect way.
 

Ready to book your session or have questions? Send me a message and I’d love to chat!

 
 

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photographysimply joyful moments

We specialize in custom portraiture including newborn photography, maternity photography,

and family photography in Columbus, GA, Fort Benning, GA, Phenix City, AL and surrounding areas.

740.461.2121
hello@simplyjoyfulmoments.com