Family Portraits

Who Wants Ice Cream?

Family Picture in Front of Waterfall in Chagrin Falls Ohio | Kropp Photography

Ok…the answer to that question is everyone. Duh.  So when we scheduled this family portrait session, we had ice cream in mind. Let me explain…

Who Wants Ice Cream?

Let me first say, my wife and I love Chagrin Falls. It’s a beautiful little bustling suburban village southeast of downtown Cleveland, full of shops and storefronts and restaurants serving up delicious food (If you love good food with a view, like we do, grab a reservation at Jekyll’s Kitchen and request one of their ‘best’ tables – you will not be disappointed). Chagrin Falls has an adorable village center with a very unique and charming gazebo and park area as well. But the real draw to the village and what keeps us and many others coming back is the waterfall, the namesake of the city. It’s located right in the center of town, so everything has just sprung up around it. There are stairs that allow you to walk right down to the bottom of the falls themselves and experience the sights and sounds of the falling water, up close and personal. It’s wonderfully relaxing and extremely serene, and this is where the magic happens!
We originally scheduled our family portrait session with the Click family a few weeks prior to when we actually shot it. We were forced to reshedule because unfortuntarely we got rained out.

 

“…we really just wanted the day to be perfect and to be able to give them the most amazing experience we possibly could…Every client deserves that from us, and that is our highest priority.”

My wife Samantha and I were there early on the day of the originally scheduled shoot scouting and preparing when it began to rain. We feverishly watched the radar, hoping for clear skies, but with no such luck. We held out as long as we could in hopes that it would pass, but we had to make the call to postpone the shoot. To anyone who is a photographer, this is not an easy thing to do. You have your heart and mind focused and ready for the session. What made it more difficult was knowing that we had a family with 3 children coming to see us, and getting kids all dressed and ready to go is no easy task. I made the call and informed the family of our decision. The mother was very gracious and understanding of the fact that we really just wanted the day to be perfect and to be able to give them the most amazing experience we possibly could, and with the conditions being the way they were, we wouldn’t be able to create the images that we wanted to deliver to them or that would be to our high standard. Every client deserves that from us, and that is our highest priority.
It was the right decision.

When the rescheduled date arrived, the weather was perfect! We arrived early again, and waited patiently for our family to arrive. We spoke on the phone and were able to arrange a meeting location that was in close proximity to all the locations we planned to use. We greeted the Click’s as the got out of there vehicle, and made our formal introductions. They are a lovely, happy family who we were super excited to see had used our recommendations for attire and wardrobe color combinations. They looked perfect! The children were all as jovial as could be, and seemingly excited for what was to come. And this is where it got fun.

Three Young Children on Gazebo Stairs Portrait
The Children at the Gazebo

As we were preparing to go to our first location, we pulled the parents aside quietly and asked them if it would be alright if we got the kids some ice cream at the conclusion of the shoot (There is an awesome little old fashioned popcorn-ice cream parlour RIGHT above the falls – The Chagrin Falls Popcorn Shop ). And of course they said yes. So, for the remainder of the shoot we told the kids that we had a surprise for them when we were all done, and you could just see them light up! We walked around the city, going from spot to spot, and it went better than we could have imagined. The children were engaged with us, with the camera, and with each other. Even dad had himself a great time. You can see the expressions in their faces in the images we captured. Near the end of the shoot, after we had pretty much gotten what we needed, we kept our word, and those kids had themselves some good ol’ fashioned ice cream cones.

Family Portrait in front of Country Parlour Ice Cream
Family enjoying ice cream and each other

What we got was to see a happy, loving family interact and be themselves right in front of our camera. Capturing that for them and for ourselves might have even been better than that ice cream those kids enjoyed while their parents watched in loving adoration.

Maybe not. I mean come on…ice cream.