Spring in Seattle

I have three favorite times of year….fall, winter, and spring. Right now I am firmly stuck in the belief that spring is the most glorious of them all…especially here in Seattle. How magical that the sun and the rain can share the same sky practically at the same time. How beautiful are all the trees blossoming. How cheerful are the daffodils poking their heads up from the soil.

I walk my dog three times a day on Queen Anne Hill and every walk I am astounded by the new forms of life that have popped up since my last tryst down the Avenue. What a time to be alive <3

An hour north of Seattle my parents have a flower farm. The allure of spring is even clearer there. There are baby chicks chirping, swans migrating, and brightly colored blooms everywhere coming into there own.

Last week my mom brought a bit of the farm spring magic into my Studio. Our Easter sessions featured chicks, flowers, and sweet children and I don’t think there is anything cuter in the whole world. Here are some photographs from one of the sessions <3

Much Love, Kiana M.

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Mila and Summer

When I was seventeen years old I got on a yellow school bus for the first time in my life and headed off to Nathan Hale, the third and final high school I attended in my teen years.

I was nervous for a lot of things…would the other kids like me. Where would I eat lunch. Was this outfit as cool as I though it was this morning. What would my classes be like.

One class in particular had captured most of my thoughts. Photography class. I had signed up for it because an art credit was required and frankly I was too embarrassed by how terrible at art I was to do something like paint in public.

I was excited for photography though. More excited for that class then anything else about going to a new school. As that yellow school bus crossed the Ballard Bridge I snapped photos in my mind. I noticed the rose bush that blurred by, the kids running in the field to the left, the sun reflecting off a lazing sailboat.

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After I had shot my first roll of film I found myself in the dark room a week later. I stood in front of my enlarger carefully watching the timer tick down. I placed the paper in each of the chemicals like you were supposed to. Then it happened…my entire life changed. I will never forget the magic of that first photograph in the developer. Never forget how the image slowly appeared. A picture of my brother sitting on the steps with a skateboard in our back yard. I actually teared up a little. I was euphoric. This was the closest thing to a miracle that I had ever witnessed. From then on I was hooked.

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I remember bringing that first photo to Mr. Kuhns. He gave me 50 out of 50 points and wrote “Very Nice!” on the back.

Mr. Kuhns was the best teacher I ever had. He believed I could do photography so I did it.

He put my work in gallery shows. When I decided that I wanted to intern for a photographer as my senior project he helped me put together a portfolio. When I told him that I thought I maybe wanted to do photography with my life he told me to go to The Brooks Institute of Photography.

So I did go to Brooks. My mom and I got on a plane and visited the school and I came home sunburned and convinced. He went with me to pick out my first digital camera that was required for my new school.

Mr. Kuhns gave me the tools to do what I love in life…and that is all you could ever ask for in a teacher.

A few weeks ago he said that his two granddaughters were in town and that he wanted me to photograph them. I leaped at the chance.

That shoot meant more to me than I can explain. It felt like coming around full circle. Going back to my roots. It reminded me of when I first fell in love with photography. Mr. Kuhns and his lovely wife came to the studio for the image premier and I was shaking with nerves. I wanted to do a good job on this…wanted them to still think that I could do photography. I felt like I was 17 and in high school again. When they liked the pictures I was so happy. He always thought I could do photography….so I do.

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The Stack Family

There is something magical about photographing a family in their own home. Home has a special magic that can’t be duplicated anywhere else. It has a comfort an ease about it. This sweet family invited me into their house to photograph their recently expanded family. The older girls were so sweet and so obviously infatuated with their new little brother. It made me long for the days when I was little and my brother was even littler. When jumping in the rain soaked grass was the greatest thing ever.

Much Love, Kiana M.

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Anders is One!

Many moons ago Hope came into my studio to do her maternity photographs. By the time she came back in for her premier Anders had already arrived in the world and I have been watching him grow since then! His one year shoot was a magical day…he took his first steps right in front of my camera! I feel so blessed that I could capture his grin as he wobbled a few feet toward the mirror in my studio.

Anders is a sweetheart and the perfect model because he always turns his head towards the light ūüėČ I can’t wait to watch him continue to grow and hopefully witness more milestones!

Much Love, Kiana M.

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The Banahan Family

I am in love with this little lion. Seriously, Emma is so cute. This sweet family came in for a newborn session about a year ago and decided to come back to me several more times to document Emma’s first 12 months of life. I couldn’t have been more blessed that they walked through my door. Emma has transformed from a sweet little newborn to a big baby with so much personality. I can’t wait to keep watching her and her big cousin grow over the coming years!

Much Love, Kiana M.

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The Chambers Family

After every single shoot my dad asks me: “How did it go?”. After this shoot my response was: “Well, they all looked like models so it was pretty easy.”

This family was so adorable. Boe just adored his little sister and they were so cute playing with leaves together. The sun came out once again and it was yet another perfect day for family portraits in Seattle. I no longer take the sunshine for granted like I did when I was in California attending photography school. Now I thank the universe for the beautiful Autumn’s that we are blessed with!¬† (Especially now that we are in the midst of winter!)

Much Love, Kiana M.

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The McShane Family

The McShane Family was so beyond sweet and wonderful. Emma was smiley and so full of joy and her parents are some of the nicest people I have ever met. This family radiated warmth and love and I feel so blessed to have been given the opportunity to photograph them. The day of their shoot turned out to be a gorgeous and sunny Seattle day, perfect for family portraits in the fall leaves! Every day I thank my lucky stars that I was blessed with a studio on Queen Anne in Once Upon a Time because it has brought so many wonderful people into my life including this adorable family.

Much Love, Kiana M.

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The Hanauer Family

Every once in a while I cross paths with people who leave me completely grateful for every choice I made in my life. They make me glad I went to photo school, moved back to Seattle, and opened a studio. These brief encounters always leave me inspired for my future and happy for my present. Photographing this family was one of those moments. They were so sweet, their love so palpable, and after their image premier I left thinking: “Yes. This is why I do this.” Joe and Kate have an adorable son with huge soulful eyes. They were so much fun and honestly, the shoot felt more like just hanging out in a park then anything work related.

Much Love, Kiana M.

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Baby Theo

I spent this Mother’s day with this oh so adorable baby boy and his family. It was so special to have not only his mom there but his mom’s mom too! I can not think of a better celebration of motherhood and family than a photoshoot with multiple generations and I feel so blessed to have been a part of it.

Can’t get enough of Theo and Company? Check out their full slideshow here:¬†http://animoto.com/play/deiOT1zGLBD7SExYmPAXbw

Much Love, Kiana M.

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Troy

This was my favorite senior session EVER. The morning of the session I woke up and looked out my window and sighed at the dense clouds, rattling window, and the constant downpour of raindrops. To my absolute delight, however, Troy agreed to go puddle jump with me and brave the Seattle elements for his senior portraits. We had such a blast running around downtown, freezing to death and laughing the whole time. I should have known better than to worry about our shoot being canceled, Troy is a fellow Alaskan. In fact after graduation he is heading back up there to work in Skagway. I am so excited to follow his adventure.

Much Love, Kiana M.

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