This feature in our "Meet the Photographer" series was sponsored by Boston Baby Photos. We are pleased to recommend this service to our readers!

When I first spoke to Jess McDaniel of Boston Baby Photos, I knew the photos she would capture of our family would make me smile for years to come. Jess is a South Shore mom of two and she so clearly loves what she does. When we chatted about our upcoming session, Jess explained that her style is mostly candid and that her goal is to take photos that really capture our current phase of life — which, with three little boys, includes lots of giggles, talking at the same time, and the occasional finger in someone’s nose. 

Getting ready and change of direction

Going into our session with Jess, the plan was to photograph our boys in their natural element, doing what they love to do. So we had discussed some potential setups, such as outside in the backyard, riding their scooters, and helping feed the baby. I dressed them each in casual shorts and T-shirts, a little less dressy than I would typically do for family photos, and was ready to head outside for some action shots.

Well, we never did make it outside because the boys had other plans — as preschoolers, toddlers, and babies tend to have. Instead, we wound up starting the session in our family room, where we spend most of our time, with the boys snuggled up on the couch. We then moved to the floor to include our dog in some photos of all of us together!

“Tell me what you love”

Jess made a point of asking each of the older boys what some of their favorite toys in their room were. While I was getting the baby ready for the next set of photos, Jess went in the big boys’ room with them and snapped some individual photos that really capture each of their personalities perfectly.

It meant so much to me that Jess spoke to our older boys directly and included them in the process in such a meaningful way. She snapped a photo of our oldest wearing his pre-K graduation hat and holding his trusty binoculars up to his eyes and, trust me when I say, that is exactly how I’ll remember him at age 5. The smile on his face in that photo is so genuine and so big because it’s a photo that is so authentically him.

Capturing a special time

In addition to the photos of all of the boys together and our whole family, Jess was able to capture some truly indescribably precious photos for me. When the baby got hungry about halfway through our session, I turned to Jess and asked, “Would it be crazy to get some photos of me nursing him?” Her enthusiasm and immediate, “I LOVE nursing photos!” was the perfect response.

While I fed the baby, Jess worked her magic. She captured everything from the way he holds my finger while he nurses to a really beautiful shot looking down at him from my point of view. Up until this session, the only photos I had of me nursing my babies were selfies I’d taken myself! These photos may never be framed in our family room for everyone to see (although, who knows… maybe they will be!), but I will cherish every one of them and am so grateful to Jess for giving me the gift of really beautiful photos of this very special phase.

Even more baby photos

One of the best things about working with Jess is that she knows every parent wants more photos of their baby. She offers a few different options for purchasing photos, such as an annual plan, which includes a beautiful coffee table album. We all know how quickly our babies grow and change during that first year and how badly we want to bottle up every month, milestone, and stage.

I can’t recommend Jess of Boston Baby Photos enough — I’m so thankful to have photos of our current phase of life and all of its loud, messy, energetic beauty.