America The Beautiful
America The Beautiful~ Our Children.
I had this idea, an idea to capture some of the fantastic kiddos from our own beautifully diverse County over the Independence Day Holiday. Even with it being incredibly short notice(like 3 or so days before I wanted to do the shoot) as well as a very popular time for family’s to vacation, I was able to gather together a nice handful of Tweens who attend 4th-7th grade at different local schools who were all a great representation of our United States Of America.
We had so much fun moving around my friend’s property in the late day sun capturing everyone’s individuality. Each of the kiddos brought along with them something that represented a bit of their family’s background. A necklace, a statue, a tee etc. Some knew of each other, others perhaps had played on a team with another or attended the same school. One would have thought that they were all old friends~ they blended together immediately and were incredibly comfortable with each other and silliness was immediate. Just what I had envisioned for the shoot. We all had so much fun, we ran around in the damp grass in our bare feet, we played with smoke bombs and sparklers went through lots of gum and even had an encounter(well almost) with a rather large snake ~ it was an amazing evening!
The six children that I was so blessed to capture together the eve of the 3rd represent America but also have deep roots in the following countries:
India, Belgium, Norway, China, Trinadad & Tabago, Ireland, Mexico to name a few!
The children were asked what they love about Independence day and some of the responses were: ” I love the fireworks!” , “Being with my family & friends” , “Campfires and Grilling out”, “All the parades and candy” . All their responses were pretty typical of children and are indeed some of my own favorite things that we often do during the 4th of July Holiday. I will admit though that as I’ve gotten older a bit more reflection sets in as those veterans pass by in the parade and as the fireworks come to a close with the 1-2 dozen loud booming fireworks. The goosebumps often appear and I reflect on those in my own family who years ago came to America for a better life and for those who I love living and gone who have served throughout the years to help bring us all a better life. That is what Independence Day is for me. What is it for you?
Embracing being an American, feeling pride for our country and being ever so thankful for those who have served and sacrificed so much throughout the decades so that we may live in the free world is important for our children to know, understand and appreciate. Equally important is that our children are able to embrace who they are to be themselves in a safe and loving environment, to grow up understanding their family’s heritage, their story and to feel so much pride in it. Everyone has a story to be told ~ to be heard ~ to be known.
My newest project is Children Of Door County. Find the group on Facebook and schedule a complimentary studio shoot with me. Details are posted in the group 🙂