Sandra Coan: Fall Is In the Air

So, I've never posted my own photos before.  But the other day, I had a conversation with my friend Amy Grace about fall, and back to school time,  and how we are both feeling a little sad about it all.  That conversation got me thinking.  I've had such a lovely summer.  Such a great time being home with my boys.  I'm a bit sad to see them go back to school. So why this post?  Why these photos?  Well, I took these the other day out at one of Seattle's most glorious places, Carkeek Park.  It was a spectacular evening.  The sun was out.  It was warm.  And I just adore this family.  But even though it was such a lovely evening... it felt like Fall, and it looked like Fall.  The light has changed.  It's beautiful.  But it's also melancholy.  And that is how this season always feels to me.  All of the change... kids growing up, going off to school, the end of  a season, preparing for the winter.... all beautiful, but also a little sad.

I know that this family is preparing for back to school, with the youngest heading off to kindergarten.  My own boys will be starting first grade in a matter of days.  And it's exciting.  But it does happen all too fast!  I just wish sometimes that we could hold onto the days like this one that I photographed... and I guess that's why taking pictures is so important.  To freeze such moments in time.  And to hold on to the sun, even as winter is knocking on our door.

-Sandra Coan

About Sandra: based in Seattle, WA  / website / contact / facebook

Scroll down to the end for Cat’s take.

Cat's take:

I've always loved Sandra Coan's work, and this session is no exception. She takes classic family portraiture that will never lose its allure over time. The last shot in this series could easily go on someone's dining room wall and never, ever come down: a family, looking off into the sunset, and the ocean and mountains beyond - just gorgeous!

That's what Sandy does for her clients: she repeatedly creates, year after year, classic, consistent images of growing families. I say repeatedly, because most of her clients have been going to her for years and years and years. When you start having Sandy shoot your family, you realize how easy and fun a portrait session can be, and how wonderful your pictures can be. She becomes your friend, and having a session with her becomes an almost a therapeutic experience, each time. She understands parents, and she really, truly understands children. You show up to a session with her, and she does all the work for you, she makes it all happen. Before you know it, the hour is up, and you have a bunch of amazing shots to choose from.

I know all of this because I have had many sessions with her, including engagement, maternity, and newborn sessions. Each time I'm blown away by how well she understands her subjects and what it takes to create keepsake images. And it comes so naturally to her, that it's easier on YOU, the subject. That's what makes sessions with her so enjoyable.

I can't wait to share more of her work, which I will be doing soon, because she is too modest to do it herself. :)

- Cat Thrasher