Dancing on St. Pete Beach

One of the greatest joys and privileges I have as a photographer is getting to witness the most precious and intimate relationships and interactions within the families I photograph.

Photographing the Garcia family is a memory I will cherish forever!! They are the most loving, affectionate, joyful family. Whenever I seated or positioned this family, their natural reaction was to grab onto the person next to them and snuggle in and often give that person an affectionate kiss on the cheek, on the top of the head or even the lips.

I have heard it said before that peer pressure is only as strong as family identity is weak. If that is the case, then this family has nothing to fear. Their family’s identity is rich in love, joy and acceptance. Every moment with them was full of the most beautiful little moments that are just evidence of their rich affection for one another. Joy was just oozing all over the place and it was wonderful to get to witness and of course to photograph.

Some of the sweetest moments occurred when I asked Alex Garcia to walk each of the women in his family down the beach, turn around and walk back to me and then stop and twirl them. Alex, the loving and thoughtful husband, father and son – walked each of them down, explained to them individually what they were going to do and then they practiced – then they began.

In these moments, I cannot express the love I have for them or for God. My heart is always so full. I feel like I am watching God at work in the hearts and lives of people made in His image. It is such a beautiful thing to watch.

There is nothing more beautiful or freeing than knowing you are loved so completely!

The Instruction & The Dance

Typically, I remove people in the background when I am shooting family photographs. I want you to be center stage in my images. However, in these next few images with the eldest Garcias – I really loved the contrast of ages, experience and depth of relationship. These two and their love and affection for each other is such a presence in this family and was such a wonderful example for me personally of what is really important in this life.

A love that withstands the tests of time is a love worth investing in!!

There is no greater gift parents can give their children than the love they have for one another.

Like all siblings, these sisters could not be more different, but together they are a force to be reckoned with.

At the end our time together, I asked the oldest daughter if she would mind laying down at the swash line for a couple images. She loves the water and agreed immediately. She talked her sister into getting down there with her. Her sister did NOT want to get wet. Their mom just loved watching them and decided to get in with them. Watch each of their reactions as the water creeps in.

A rising tide lifts everything in it’s wake. If this family is a rising tide, clearly they lift each other up. After spending an evening with them, I would venture to say that they lift everyone around them in their wake. Just as watching the tide roll in is beautiful – so too is this most precious family.

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