REDEFINE | BATH TUB SESSIONS featuring Baby Rose Photography

“There is only one sun. We can’t all claim to only have one way to use the light, but we can REDEFINE how we choose to express it.”

Why are you passionate about photographing bath tub sessions?

After I became a mother, I became really invested in making images that really reflect mothering in deep and real ways. I felt drawn to help record mothering as a complicated, beautiful and difficult thing; an intertwined and love filled heart ache. Mothering is glorious and exhausting, it is joyful and frustrating. I wanted to make portraits of mothers deep into their mothering that they can hold onto as their children grow and become more independent.

When did you first realize you liked bath tub sessions?

When I made the first bath tub session, it happened organically and as a natural offshoot of our maternity session. I walked into Shea’s house and doing my normal, pre-session walk through I came into their master bath and saw a dream come true. I basically begged her to consider a bubble bath with her toddler. She was wonderfully open to the idea and as it happened, the serenity and intimacy of mother and child bathing really sparked my inspiration.  I have always been deeply moved by Mary Cassatt’s paintings of mothers and children, especially the bathing ones so I felt like the time was right to pursue this concept creatively.

What are the tips you would share with anyone trying to break into offering bathtub sessions?

1. When picking mamas to work with be sure you are super open about the process; there will be nudity, there will be lots of nudity  (it won’t ever be on film but it sure will be in your eyes).
2. Keep a very loose structure around actual posing with young kiddos involved, mamas will naturally be hugging and holding in the tub, so let the session just free form.
3. Do plan ahead mentally, know your plan for lighting, for editing, for feel and emotion before you walk in the (bath)room. Once things get going they are loose but that just means your artistic game plan has to be pretty tight.
4.  Try and embrace the variety of light, looks, colors and emotions within this genre. This type of work is so specific that it could easily become stale and uniform but instead I’m finding myself inspired with each new mother, new tub, new window light. Enjoy the chaos of creating this special memories for moms.
5. Be really, really open hearted. This images are very intimate, very raw and real. there is lots of crying, lots of connection and at least for myself, I fall a little in love with each family because of the closeness of making these portraits. Mamas open up their hearts and reveal their vulnerability because I am also standing there with them in this season of life. I also am willing to share myself with them. To make something like this work, you have to be just as vulnerable ( but not as naked) as the mama your are making a portrait of.

What were the challenges for you in the beginning?

Initially, that first session was so natural and spontaneous that it just happened like a dream. When I actually started to do tub sessions with purpose and intent, I was super worried that there wouldn’t be a lot of interest. I also discovered that a LOT of bathrooms don’t have amazing light or are VERY cluttered up. I had to learn to create a flow in which i set moms and babies at ease while i worked into a lighting plan and cleared up all the bits of things I wasn’t going to want in the shot ( i.e. that pile of loofahs and washcloths).


About the photographer:

Becoming a mother changed my heart, my mind, (yes, my body, too) and my whole world. Before my son tipped over my universe, I made photographs of families. Now, my eyes look for the strings of love that connect families and I make portraits of your hearts.

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