What to Wear for Family Photos | Kara Chappell Photography | Summer Style Tips

Summer is here (finally!), and the weather is PERFECT for family pictures in the PNW. Don’t know what to wear? I got you boo! Welcome to my new seasonal styling tips! I’ll be sharing palettes and pieces I love and recommend to my clients throughout the year. I want to help you visualize a stunning wardrobe that will take your family photo session to the next level.

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Motherhood Mini Sessions | Kara Chappell Photography | Rosario Bay

Love is at the heart of what I do. Love and mamas. Mamas give. And give. We don't ask for much, and often put the needs of our family above our own. We see the light in our friends WAY before we acknowledge it in ourselves. We doubt our beauty. We doubt our talent. We doubt our strengths.

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Home at Last | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

Military homecomings have my heart. They are always special, unique, and emotional. It’s even more special when I get to document a homecoming for a friend, especially someone I admire and look up to as a mother and military spouse.

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Rocky Point Summer Sunset Session | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

Military families are constantly in transition. So much so that you’d think they wouldn’t have time for annual family pictures, or that it would be too challenging to plan a family photo session with changing schedules, dets, and deployments.

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A Night in Georgetown | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

Now that Ryan has been in the airlines for about two years, I’m starting to take advantage of the non-rev perks and plan a few trips here and there when our schedules allow for it. We found a weekend that worked where I could go see a few friends in D.C. and shoot a few sessions last month. Friend time and time to recharge my creative batteries? A total win-win, right?

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Help Wanted: Business Assistant Position Available | Whidbey Island Family Photography

Would you like to join my team? Or know someone who is looking for part-time, creative work in the Oak Harbor area? Kara Chappell Photography is growing, and I’m looking for someone to help me grow and manage my social media and back-end business tasks. Apply here!

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Finding Myself Again - February 365 Project | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

For most people, January is the start of a new year. I like to think of February as my own personal starting line. Maybe it’s the holiday hangover that creeps into January, or the optimism of resolutions that keep me dreaming all month, but for me personally, reality sets in on February 1st, and the short month FLIES by before I know it.

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A Month of Firsts - January 365 Project | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

I just completed my first month of my 365 Project, and I don’t feel like throwing my camera out the window. #winning! A “365 Project” is photographer-speak for taking a picture a day for a year. And if that sounds easy, it’s actually not. Because you definitely don’t take just one picture a day (at least I don’t). You take 50, or 400 pictures a day, and then you cull, edit, organize, and repeat.

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Fair Winds and Following Seas | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

I'm still in denial that I'm not going to be grabbing margaritas with this beautiful mama anytime soon. The VR-61 family was so blessed to know, work, and play with the McColloughs. As the outgoing CO (Skipper) of the squadron, Gabe was my hubby Ryan’s boss, and his awesome wife Lindsey was the chief-party-planner of our spouse’s club. She made a huge effort to be here and support the spouses in our squadron, even though her home (and often kiddos) were in the Midwest.

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Hurricane Ridge Family Mountain Session | Seattle Family Adventure Photographer

This session was such a game changer for me. First of all, I love this woman. Whitney took our family pictures on Whidbey Island last year, and they are so beautiful that they cover most of wall space that was left in my home (I may have a “hanging pictures on my wall problem” - or else I need a bigger house!). Ever since then we stayed in touch and developed both a personal and professional friendship - as we are both photographers, military spouses, and mamas to two wild and awesome kiddos.

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Rosario Bay Family Vacation Session | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

Shelly and her boys found their happy place during a summer trip to the San Juan Islands. They traveled all the way from Texas, and now come back every year to enjoy some quality time together while taking in the beauty of the area.

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Savannah + Nick | Rosario Bay Couples Photographer

I am finally getting back with the program and starting to blog all the gorgeous sessions I was lucky enough to shoot this fall. With the weather getting rainy, I can’t think of anything better than grabbing a comfy blanket, lighting a pumpkin candle, and sharing Savannah and Nick’s amazing couples session with you.

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Bowman Bay Fall Family Session | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

I met Carly and Bobby last fall, when we squeezed in the last possible photo session of the season. And it was COLD. Like, had to wear coats, seeking shelter indoors cold. They were amazing troopers, but we knew that this year we wanted warmth, sun, and clear skies.

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Bowman Bay Sunset Beach Session | WHidbey Island Family Photographer

What can I say about this amazing family?? First of all - they are FUN, and they love each other fiercely. I had the pleasure of working with this beautiful family last year, when I convinced them that instead of taking pictures in their backyard (which they had always ever done), we should walk on the ferry and go get milkshakes in Port Townsend. We all had a blast - it was a major adventure and a session I'll never forget.   

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Whidbey Island Beach Session | Seattle Family Photographer

Singing songs, climbing trees, running in and out of the surf. These are the things we do during family sessions. We play, we have fun, we make memories. Or rather - YOU make memories, and I capture them for you to hold on to for years to come. 

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Deception Pass State Park Sunset Beach Session | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

This session was so much fun! Not only did this amazing family fly all the way from Minnesota to shoot with me (okay they were staying in Seattle for a family wedding), but mama is also a photographer (no pressure, right)?!

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A Midwest Family Session at Mahoney State Park | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

The girls and I head home every summer for a few weeks to visit the family in Omaha, Nebraska. We soak up the sun (and the heat), spend our days exploring the zoo and splash pads, and our nights catching fireflies and shooting fireworks. It's a magical time that we look forward to all year. 

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Rocky Point Beach Sunset Session | Whidbey Island Family Photographer

As we waded through tall grasses to get to the field of wildflowers just on the other side of the parking lot, I couldn't help thinking how lucky we are to live in a place where such beautiful spots are literally only a stone's throw away. 

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Party of Five Morning Newborn Lifestyle Session | Whidbey Island Newborn Photographer

A head full of hair. A bed full of snuggles. A tummy full of cinnamon rolls. I spent the morning documenting this beautiful family and all the newness and excitement that comes with welcoming a new member of the family into your home.

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