11 Feb

Charlotte, NC Child Photographer | Chocolate Dreams

Charlotte, NC Child Photographer | Chocolate Dreams

Growing up, Chocolate Milk was one of my favorite foods.  It was my breakfast before school (nutritious, right?), and I’d have a glass when I arrived home from school and another before bed.  I do wonder how my parents allowed to occur.  I’m pretty sure I drank about 5 glasses of chocolate milk per day between the ages of 12 and 18.  I had even decided that when I grew up, I would have two dogs – both Chocolate Labrador Retrievers and I would name them Nestle and Hershey.

Well, I don’t have the dogs yet.  But this is what happens when a family photographer that doesn’t cook much takes a food photography class at the NAPCP Retreat with Lauren Carnes. I needed to practice what I learned, so this was the easiest scene I could create and one of the first that popped into my head.  My glasses of chocolate milk never looked this pretty when I was a kid.  And I am pretty certain my children will be requesting to recreate these images this weekend to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Charlotte, NC Child Photographer practices food photography

 

Milk Bottles: Target

Valentine’s Day Decor and Candy: Target

Food: Hershey’s Syrup and Reddi-Whip Whipped Cream

08 Sep

Union County North Carolina Family Photographer | Quiet Moments

Union County North Carolina Family Photographer | Quiet Moments

No doubt about it, life is busy. Careers, kids, spouse, friends, family – sometimes it seems like there’s not enough time to fit it all in. But once in a while, when you least expect it, life gives you a quiet gift. Sometimes it’s in the form of a warm hug, a silly giggle or sweet kiss that keeps you grounded and reminds you what life is all about. These images remind me that in a fast paced world of go-go-go, there are the moments with our families that we want to hold on to and cherish as we tackle the day to day.

 

Union County North Carolina Family Photographer

Union County North Carolina Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan takes playful photos of children and parents

 

 

 

31 Jul

Dreamy North Carolina Childhood Photography | Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

Dreamy North Carolina Childhood Photography | Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

It’s Christmas in July!!!  Or maybe it’s just me trying to catch up on sharing some of last year’s portrait sessions.  I do love twinkling lights in the backdrop of a portrait session.  I also love capturing the bond between sisters – one that is truly irreplaceable. My sister and I have a bond that no other could replace, and the same is true with these two special ladies.  I’ve had the privilege to watch these little girls grow over the last 4 years through my lens and photographs.  This was our 5th session together (and I’m looking forward to their sixth session already booked for this Fall!).    These girls came prepared, as they always do, to show me their stuff- their sassy sister poses, their giggles, their hugs, and especially their fabulous dresses and accessories (thanks to mom!!).

Dreamy North Carolina Childhood Photography Charlotte Uptown Session Dreamy North Carolina Childhood Photography Park Session by Carolyn Ann Ryan Dreamy North Carolina Childhood Photography Urban Session by Carolyn Ann Ryan

17 Mar

Sunny Marvin, NC Family Photographs | I need spring!

Sunny Marvin, NC Family Photographs | I need spring!

I don’t know about you but I’m just about done with winter.  We’ve had snow, the temps have been in the single digits and the holidays are over so I’d be very happy if we could just fast forward to spring. We are so close to it and I can’t wait!

That’s why I had to post these colorful, bright, cheerful photos of this beautiful family of 4!  I can just feel this warm sunshine on my back, smell the green blades of grass and hear the sweet giggles of these two sisters.  Oh spring time, you can’t come fast enough!

 

Sunny Family Portraits by Marvin, North Carolina Family Photographer Sunny Marvin, NC Family Photographs by Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Sunny Marvin, NC Family Portraits

09 Mar

Delightful Waxhaw Family Portraits | Brothers

Delightful Waxhaw Family Portraits | Brothers

Brothers have a special connection – they are playmates, partners in crime and  best buds.  I’ve photographed this special family for several years and nothing gives me more joy than watching these brothers grow not only taller but closer!  I’m so thankful that this family of four has allowed me to capture these special family moments year after year!

 

 Delightful Waxhaw Family Portraits by Charlotte Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Waxhaw Child Photogapher Carolyn Ann Ryan Waxhaw North Carolina Family Photogapher Carolyn Ann Ryan share Autumn family portraits Staten Island Family Photogapher

Fall Family Portrait Session by Waxhaw area Family Photogapher Carolyn Ann Ryan

 

 

 

16 Dec

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Family Photography | A Picnic

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Family Photography | A Picnic

These sweet angelic sisters make my job very easy; their blond curls and innocent blue eyes look beautiful at any angle. When I look at these images, it’s as if I’m peaking through a window in their house.  Their graceful, playful and lovable personalities come through so clearly.  I feel like I can hear their giggles and laughter as they twirl through the grass and share an afternoon picnic.

 

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Family Photography by North Carolina Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Family Portraits by Carolyn Ann Ryan North Carolina Child Portrait Session by Carolyn Ann Ryan

10 Dec

Playful Marvin, North Carolina Family Photographer | A Wish

Playful Marvin, North Carolina Family Photographer | A Wish

Throughout our lives we wish for different things.  As children it’s typically a toy, as we get older it’s a car, then as we become adults, it’s a family.  Family is where we feel the safest and can truly be ourselves.  I was honored to capture these special moments where mother and son could let loose, be themselves.  There is such a special bond between these two, and I enjoyed watching them have fun together – isn’t that what family is all about?

 

Playful Marvin, North Carolina Family Photographer | A Wish Staten Island Child and Running Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Playful Marvin, North Carolina Family Photographer Smiles Giggles and Fun with Mom and Son Staten Island Family Photographer

28 Nov

Dreamy Waxhaw, NC Family Portraits | Give Thanks!

Dreamy Waxhaw, NC Family Portraits | Give Thanks!

Thanksgiving is about eating, laughing and most importantly spending time with your loved ones.  It’s a time to GIVE THANKS for all that we have.  Life is busy and sometimes we forget our greatest treasures are the people right in front of us.  During this session, this beautiful family of four took the time to celebrate their family and give thanks for each other.

Today, I’m so thankful for my amazing family and friends that support me, even through the busiest of seasons, and also thankful for every moment that I get to spend doing something I love.  Thank you to my husband, children, parents, sister, sister-in-law, my entire family and all of my friends and clients!

Wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels to be with the ones you love!

Dreamy Waxhaw, NC Family Portraits by Carolyn Ann Ryan with Thanksgiving Theme Waxhaw NC Child and Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Wahxaw NC Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan shares dreamy family portraits

13 Nov

Delightful Waxhaw, NC Family Photography | Feet

Delightful Waxhaw, NC Family Photography | Feet

Feet are funny! In those first few years they are so adorable and cute.  I love how babies and toddlers are always fascinated by their feet but what makes me smile about these twins is how he seems more interested in his sister’s feet than his own!  It was just instinct for him to grab his sister’s foot as soon as she kicked it forward.  It speaks to the connection between them, and I really I hope that connection simply grows, as they grow up together.

 

Delightful Waxhaw, NC Family Photography | Feet Delightful Waxhaw, NC Family Photography Twins First Birthday Portraits Delightful Waxhaw, NC Family Photography Twins First Birthday Portrait Session

28 Oct

Charming Waxhaw Family Portrait Session| USA

Charming Waxhaw Family Portrait Session| USA

It is so important to teach our children the how lucky they are to live in the United States.  We live in a place of opportunity and freedom.  I doubt this little girl realizes or understands what our flag represents that but I love how her parents have embedded their patrioism in their family photos.  I’d be very curious to see how the meaning of this photo changes for her as she grows up; something tells me our flag will be as important to her and it should be to all of us!

 

Charming Waxhaw Family Portrait Session| USA Patriotic Portrait Session

Charming Waxhaw Family Portrait Session by North Carolina Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan Waxhaw Family Photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan photographs charming portrait session in home

 

 

10 Dec

Waxhaw, North Carolina Family Photographer | Childhood Enclosed

Waxhaw, North Carolina Family Photographer

Wow, it’s been over two months since I have had an opportunity to blog my family portrait sessions and I have a long list of sessions to add to the blog!  It’s been a busy holiday season, and I’m so grateful for all of my wonderful and amazing clients!

So, now we are jumping all the way back to August to begin a marathon of family portrait session blog posts!

This sweet family requested a downtown session right in the beautiful town of Basking Ridge.  I absolutely loved having an opportunity to just wander up and down the main street and find different backdrops and settings for creating family images.  After walking up and down the main road, we ventured off to a side road and down to an open park area to complete the session.  This sweet little girl loved being photographed and might just be a model someday! She has sweet eyes and a beautiful smile, and I just loved her dress, side-ponytail, and the beautiful blue ribbon with her curls.  OK, so maybe I just loved everything about this session.  And I hope do you as well.

This is the perfect way to kick-off the upcoming marathon of blogs and family photos!  Enjoy!

Family Photographer, Carolyn Ann Ryan captures portraits in Basking Ridge

Family Portrait Session in Basking Ridge, NJ

11 Sep

Charlotte, NC Child Photographer | Tiny Tuesday – “Someday we’ll tell you what this all means . . .”

Charlotte, NC Child Photographer | Tiny Tuesday – “Someday we’ll tell you what this all means . . .”

On a rainy day in August, and we traveled to Jersey City and spent the morning at the Liberty Science Center.  But upon leaving, we found the sky had cleared, and I wanted to visit the Central Railroad of New Jersey historic train station located inside Liberty State Park.  It was a short drive from the museum and I knew the kids would enjoy seeing a view of the NYC skyline up close.

But when we got out of the car, my husband and I quickly glanced over and saw the Empty Sky Memorial.  Of course, we immediately remembered that day 11 years ago, and our hearts grew a little heavier.

We first ventured into the train station and looked around, and then returned outside to see the skyline again.  I have a bunch of images that I love from that afternoon (I’ll post more tomorrow), but as we turned to head back towards the car, we decided to walk through the beautiful Memorial standing tall between us and the parking lot.   It was so elegant and peaceful.  It deserved a quiet respect.  As my husband took my smiling three year old son’s hand and began to slowly walk through the Memorial, I heard him whisper, “Someday we’ll tell you what this all means . . . “.

I paused for a moment with my daughter.  In front of me I saw a man with a heavy heart, clutching the sweetness and innocence of childhood right at his side. When I saw their reflection in the side wall, I had to capture the moment.  And yes, someday we’ll tell our children what it all means, but not just yet.

Today’s Tiny Tuesday post is in honor of all of those who lost their lives, especially the heroes who gave their lives to help save others.

05 Nov

Vibrant Waxhaw, NC Family Portrait Session | Childhood Enclosed

Vibrant Waxhaw, NC Family Portrait Session | Childhood Enclosed

Lately, I find myself constantly saying how much I love my job.  When you get to see smiles like these on a regular basis, how could you not love what you do?

A few weeks back, I met this adorable family and we had a wonderful afternoon.  The sun was warm and shining in early October, and the light was just perfect everywhere we went. We started at their home in the backyard, which gave the family dog an opportunity to jump in a few images, and then we headed to a park in Edison, NJ after a quick clothing change.  I love watching a family just have fun together.  You can see the happiness and smiles just shine through in these photos!

Vibrant Waxhaw, NC Family Portrait Session by family photographer Carolyn Ann Ryan

21 Sep

Lovable Marvin, NC Family Photography | Nieces

Lovable Marvin, NC Family Photography | Nieces

I am blessed to have four beautiful, little nieces living not too far away.  They are my daughter’s best friends, and we just love spending time with them.

I think my sister loves having a photographer in the family, but I don’t mind. It is a pleasure to spend a few hours with these girls and capture their beautiful smiles and watch them grow.
This year, some of my favorites are of my youngest niece, because she made me work for some of those smiles as you can see below, but capturing all of her personality (including the “fake” pouts) was just so much fun. Sometimes, those are the images that make me giggle most when I’m post-processing the session on my computer.

Here are some highlights from our End of Summer session last week.  {Thanks girls for being so wonderful and fun!}

Lovable Marvin, NC Family Photography highlights adorable portraits of her nieces

18 Jul

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Child Portrait Session | Somewhere in a historic village . . .

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Child Portrait Session | Somewhere in a historic village . . .

My little girl will soon be one year older, and we are starting to plan her 6th birthday party, which will take place just a few days before she begins first grade.  Earlier this year in her Kindergarten class, her teacher read the book “The Wizard of Oz” to the class, and my little munchkin (which has been my nickname for her for years) absolutely loved the story. Although she is still too timid to watch the movie, she loves the story of Dorothy.

So, she picked “The Wizard of Oz” as the theme for her birthday party.  For the last few years we have included her birthday portraits on her invitations, because I love being able to look back each year to see how much she has grown.  This year we decided to include the theme of her party as part of a very special portrait session for her.

Believe me, being a photographer does not make it easier to take my own children’s portraits.  It’s sometimes harder, because I’m not a new or interesting person to them and they already know all my secret, special tricks for making children giggle and smile.

But this year, I made her birthday portraits a full day event complete with costume, hair appointment, red sparkly shoes and a stuffed animal puppy in a basket. We talked about this special session for two full weeks, and I blocked off my calendar to create a special day for just the two of us.
My little girl was completely swept up in the magic of this day from the moment she woke up that morning, and came rushing into my room with eager anticipation. We started early at Anthony Michael Hair Salon in Westfield, where the wonderful Pam Sestito created the braids that would start my little girl’s transformation. We then journeyed about 45 minutes away to Historic Richmondtown in Staten Island to give our session a complete period look with historic homes, barns, fences, and gardens.

Of course, twenty minutes into the actual portrait session, the heat of the day and the itchiness of her costume was causing her to pout, so that’s when I used my bribery plan and explained that if she cooperated for the remainder of the session, then we would get ice cream afterwards. I’ll let you guess which image below shows her reaction to that announcement.

Sometimes portrait sessions might seem stressful and frustrating, because we are trying to get our children to cooperate and do something for us.  But, I’ve learned that by turning a portrait session into a fun day that is all about the children, and becomes something they WANT to do, then it becomes much easier to get their cooperation during the session.  And if you choose to use bribery, don’t tell them about the rewards until you really need to use it.  The pictures are worth it!

My daughter and I had a wonderful day complete with ice cream for lunch (something I would never do on a regular day), and we have these beautiful images of our little girl growing up. I love my job and I love being a Mom to this wonderful child. Thanks to my little munchkin for all her cooperation, and her beautiful smile.

(Now I have to brainstorm a special day with my little boy!)

Enchanting Waxhaw, NC Child Portrait Session

Costume: Chasing Fireflies

Hair: Anthony Michael Salon (Westfield)