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  • Lisa Her, Makeup Artist / Photographer

Happy 12th Birthday, My Sweet Penelli - Summer Pictures at the Horse Farm

I can't believe how fast time flies, especially when you become a mother. My life has literally evolved around my three children throughout the last twelve years. I still can't believe I have a tweenager! So, as any mother would want to treasure their children's youth, I wanted to remember my sweet Penelli with pictures. She's growing up so fast and I use to take pictures of her every other month before she started going to school. Now, she's a middle schooler and I've been slacking so, this was my chance (and excuse) to get some cooperative shots before she gets any older (and refuse to take cheesy pictures with Mommy.) Since Penelli's birthday was in the summer, and the weather has been so nice, I thought it would be perfect to do an outdoor shoot around some of her favorite things - beautiful scenery and horses.

As much as Penelli admires horses, she has not been around them much. We use to flip through horse picture books and draw horses together. That was the beginning of her admiration for this beautiful, magnificent creature. The horses at Fort Mill, SC are so friendly. We were not anticipating on being this close to a horse but this mother and foal loved our company. They were extremely calm and gentle and we were lucky enough to get some captures of the kids petting them.

Well of course this was Penelli's shoot, but I always try to get any captures I can get of these three together. Recently, candid shots are the only ones that turn out the best. Kids get too smart and bored so quickly that they will only sit still for 30 seconds. Plus I love to capture them at their true, natural selves.

I thought something whimsical would look pretty for a second outfit, so I asked one of my bridal hairstylists, Katy, to make some flower crowns for the photo shoot. We decided to make a leaf crown for my stud muffin too because he would feel left out. Katy laughed and said, " He will look like little Caesar," and she was right. Nano loved his crown and started posing like a little prince as soon as we put the leafy halo on is sweaty head. Katy did such an amazing job using fresh flowers she picked up at a local grocer. They were perfect for the sweet whimsical feel.

As the sun was setting, we got some soft golden light which was perfect for Penelli's second outfit.

These two sisters are like cats and dogs! Both so similar and different in so many ways. I'm so glad they have each other to learn and grow together.

At this point in the session, Penelli was ready to call it quits. She decided to be a good sport since Mommy said the lighting is perfect right at this moment. It sure was.

My husband says Penelli looks and acts just like me when I was this age. I think she is far more smarter and talented than I was back when I was 12. Happy Birthday, my sweet Penelli. May you achieve every thing you dream of and like Rod Stuart says it best.....

And may sunshine and happiness surround you when you're far from home And may you grow to be proud Dignified and true And do unto others As you'd have done to you Be courageous and be brave And in my heart you'll always stay Forever Young, Forever Young

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