Each year, the most beautiful peonies bloom in our yard. To me, there is no other flower that has the same old-fashioned appeal. When you have beautiful flowers growing, there is always that question of cutting them or not. They are so beautiful outside, but the when you bring them in, the fragrance fills the air and they instantly brighten the room. A photographer has a different conundrum all together: Do you use them for a photo shoot, wasting them?
The answer last summer was yes.
I included the behind-the-scenes images to show just how cobbled together this photoshoot was. I worked in the garage to utilize the natural light and clamped a piece of tag board to the drying rack.
You often see images of girls laughing and dancing with wreaths of flowers on their heads… I’ve decided that those aren’t peonies. These flowers were heavy and extremely uncomfortable, as the stems aren’t very pliable…. but I loved the result.
This image is much more heavily edited than my usual work because I wanted it to have the old-fashioned, hand-tinted look.
When she was free from the long-sleeved dress and heavy peonies, my daughter brought her chicken, Princess, up to play with the (now wilted) flowers.
Princess was unimpressed.
She did not want to wear the flowers, even when she was bribed with treats.
And as my daughter worked with Princess, I noticed how the sun made her hair glow.
I loved creating that vintage portrait with her, but there is no denying the beauty of the wisps of hair that break free from pony-tails.
These are the wisps that you constantly brush back from your child’s face when you are attempting to make eye-contact… but when the child is in their own world, there is nothing quite so lovely.