A FAMILY PHOTO SHOOT AT JARDIN DES TUILERIES WITH ANA & SYLVIA

Looking at them you’d think they’re Scandinavian, but they're not. Tall and slim with blond hair, you can tell the Lagos sisters are definitely Latino listening to them talking to each other in Brazilian Portuguese. Ana has been living in Paris for over a decade and her older sister Sylvia has been in London for more than 20 years. Sylvia and her kids, 11-year-old Clarissa and 9-year-old Daniel, are enjoying the school vacation to visit Ana and dog Frère Jacques in the City of Light. And it’s the perfect moment to capture family memories.

 We meet at the entrance of Jardin des Tuileries in front of the big wheel on Place de la Concorde and I recognize Ana immediately, whom I met couple of years ago. But this time, something has changed for sure. She’s not the same, she looks very different. If I had to describe her in 3 powerful words, I would say: stunning, happy and PREGNANT! She is big but not enormous for being a pregnant woman, now at 6 months and you can tell all the weight is concentrated on her belly. And no wonder why! She’s expecting twins! :)

I'm so excited, this is just the kind of photo shoot I dream to have more often: adults, children, a pet and—above all—a pregnant woman! What more can one ask for? And what do you think the icing on the cake is? The weather's been terrible the whole week, but this morning the sun is out and the sky is blue. I'm lucky and must have been good in a previous life! :)

We start our photo session around the terrace garden, as dogs are not allowed inside. We have fun posing during the walk and really connect. I'm so touched seeing how close the whole family is. You can see the love bursting between the sisters as well as the kids! We talk together a lot during the photo shoot. We take little breaks sometimes and laugh and tell each other stories in a whole mix of languages. I speak French with Ana, English with Sylvia and the kids; the sisters speak Portuguese with each other and we all mix the languages up talking to Frère Jacques the dog! :)

What a morning! Lots of walking, making great photo shots and having nice chats. Laughter and a great time in just a couple of hours. I wish every day could be like that, but sometimes bad moments don’t hurt so we can enjoy and appreciate the good ones. I went back home really looking forward to seeing the results! I send a few pictures to the family in the afternoon and the reply is short but says it all: “we LOVED it!”. How else can one feel after that but incredibly happy? 

The one lesson I’ll remember from that session is that success cannot only be measured by the amount of money you make by selling a service, nor the quality of the product or service you provide. Above all, it’s the impact, emotions and happiness that you create through connections with people! Photography is for me the best job in the world.

A PHOTO SESSION IN PARIS, EIFFEL TOWER WITH AMANDA & ANDREW - PRIVATE PHOTOGRAPHER IN PARIS

There are days when you feel lazy and do not want to leave the apartment. Yet I have to as I have a photo shoot at the Eiffel Tower today. Luckily it's not as early as usual; my appointment is only at 11AM. I finally leave the apartment and make my way slowly to the metro station, which takes me to the meeting point in less than 45 minutes. But I end up arriving late all the same which I didn’t want because it’s not professional, but I will say it was not entirely my fault: The train always gets delayed when it’s not the right time, but it still means I have to run to the appointment.

I apologize to Amanda and Andrew when I arrive of course. They’re a young and lovely couple and have traveled from the US. I feel so grateful at that moment: How many foreigners want to see the Eiffel Tower but once in their lifetime, and I actually live here, in Paris, right in the center and I can see it anytime I want. Amanda and Andrew seem not to be typical Americans and that’s the first thing they tell me when we meet: We don’t want to do the classic poses the Americans usually want to do! :) But any crazy ones, just for fun, to remember their crazy time in Paris

We start walking and I was really amazed how comfortable they are with the poses. Amanda jumps on Andrew's back, they hug, they kiss very sweetly, they look at each other tenderly and even though they've been together for over a decade, they look as much in love as if they’ve only just started dating... Lots of emotion wells up seeing that.

After having done all the crazy things they can do, we walk towards the river Seine for a quieter time to capture the final memories. A couple of shots more here and there hand in hand in beautiful light before I put all my equipment back in my bag to run to the next photo session at idyllic Bir-Hakeim Bridge.