Singing in the Rain, Family Photography in Spring

With warmer weather on the way Kim and I were planning out our sessions. We were running through our normal spring warm spell and we were talking about the effect the Pacific Ocean has on us in the Willamette Valley. In western Oregon the summer months are really July, August and September with rain a really possibility through the 4th of July. Global warming has increased our dryness but also the erratic behavior of the weather.

I have talked about scheduling in the past with weather, and some uncertainty wasn't going to stop us form charging into a Saturday without a little dance. With two outdoor sessions, one morning and one evening, we were hoping for smooth sailing through the day. The family photography session that we had in the morning was looking good at sunrise with some sun and blue skies but it started to shift and off we went.

With our planning for our clients we stay in close touch by text and Kim and I arrived at the location unsure which way the wind would blow. We scouted a beautifully flowered Jenkins Estate in the middle of Washington County, Oregon and were ready to go. The family was on the way, and so was a little rain. It is hard to leave things so touch and go till the last second, but the springs held on right up until they arrived.

Now our equipment is ok in the damp weather but it is not good in rain so we were on the fence. What do you say to a family who is all ready to go when your really unsure of the weather. No matter how much you try and predict your in for a surprise. So we chatted, and they ended up arriving.... to no rain. WHEW, we went out to the location and shot some amazing work for an hour. It was amazing.

Now rain in a session causes hair problems, makeup, kids to get muddy, etc. so it is just difficult. 99.999% of clients are not going to want to do a wet look session especially families so it is a balance of time management and expectations. I know it isn't my fault but I still feel bad when it doesn't work out. The plus is that the air is so clean, flowers are fresh, grass is green, and so on. 

For those of you interested in what to bring as a photographer:

  1. Towels, hehehehe.

  2. Barrier, large plastic bags, plastic sheeting, etc.

  3. Blankets

  4. Hand warmers if it is cold

  5. Umbrellas

That is pretty basic but we learned that barrier plastic under blankets is amazing for even the wettest setup.

As a client be prepared to be flexible, bring your makeup to touch up and we will take care of the rest.

The evening was a polar opposite. The clouds cleared by mid afternoon and we went to an open vista location at Cooper Mountain Nature Park and had bright sun. The temp was great but our big savior in this type of condition is a 6x4 diffusion screen. It is difficult to get anyone to smile or look at the camera in bright light. The little baby was extremely sensitive but once I was holding the screen he perked right up. The vista was amazing and we have some stunning shots for that family.