In Denver, the sunflowers are a big deal. They come out for a few months a year, somewhere near the airport. The exact location changes every year because sunflowers cannot be grown in the same field every year (I am not a sunflower scientist – this is just what I have been told).
When Maddy’s mom, Heather, called me to get her senior photos done, she said Maddy wanted a sunflower field like the ones by the airport. Not knowing exactly where they were, I got in the Jeep and drove around. For 1.5 hours. In the dark. Trying to find sunflowers. They were nowhere. Nowhere. Finally, thinking I had gone absolutely insane and was just driving passed them and not seeing them, I called Denver International Airport. They told me that they were “pretty obvious” next to the airport. If I didn’t see them, they had obviously been harvested.
I delivered the news to my senior (first time in 10 years I wasn’t able to deliver on a location *tear*) and we decided on a local park instead. The day we were set to do photos, it poured. Non stop for hours. Rain and rain and rain. Her mom called and asked if we could postpone. We agree to meet the next Tuesday instead.
The Thursday before, I was scrolling through Twitter, enjoying random nonsense. After a few moments of scrolling, I saw a beautiful photo of sunflowers. The photo was taken in Denver. The day BEFORE. The sunflowers existed!! The twitter feed was from the local meteorologist at 9NEWS in Denver, Cory Reppenhagen. I desperately reached out to him and begged him to tell me the location of the sunflowers. He happily shared.
Then, on instagram later that evening, I saw photos that a friend had posted of her sweet little girls playing in sunflowers. I knew for a fact that this girl lived in the Denver metro area and I reached out, again begging, for details. She happily shared, on the agreement that I don’t tell anyone where they were.
The following night I went out, husband in tow, down dirt roads and through random neighborhoods, past corn fields and deserted fields, searching for sunflowers to surprise Maddy. FINALLY, there they were!!! At a random intersection, completely desolate, and totally beautiful.
I called Heather right away to let her know that I found sunflowers. The drive was a bit of a commitment, but if she was still up for it, I was too.
We met that Tuesday for photos, and I can honestly say this is one of my favorite sessions of the year. Maddy is absolutely stunning, sweet as pie, and genuine and caring. All of the things you hope to raise a child to be.
She is passionate about theatre, and that came out in her photos. Her silly faces and down-to-earth attitude made her the perfect subject for photos. And thrown in the middle of giant fields of sunflowers made it even better.
One of my favorite things about my senior sessions is that for the last 30 minutes I allow them to do photos with a friend or family member. Maddy brought her best friend Alyssa with her (stay tuned for Alyssa’s blog post later!) and the two were absolute magic together.
My personal favorite thing about this shoot is the way that Maddy evolved throughout the photos. She started out nervous in front of the camera,and within a little bit of time had blossomed into a total pro. “My little Kylie Jenner” as I ended up calling her, went from sweet high school senior, to a girl ready to take on the world.
This session was one of my favorites, and I hope you enjoy as well!