How do you approach the unknown? Are you scared, nervous, or excited? The start of 2020 brought me a rush of unknowns. For the first time, I was boarding an airplane. For the first time, I was using natural light to photograph a newborn, and for the first time, I was completely out of my element (studio) making it happen with what I had on hand. I would be lying if I had said I wasn’t at all scared, nervous, or excited.

My younger sister and her husband are stationed at Fort Campbell where he is serving in the United States Army. My niece, Adilyn Wren, arrived on Friday, December 13th, 10 days before her predicted due date. I had already bought my ticket to come see them, for four, short days in January. The thought of the plane ride thrilled me. I have been aching for my first plane ride for years and never had an opportunity. But the unknown of how I was to accomplish my goal of photographing a now three-week-old newborn in natural light without my bean bag and a studio full of props, backdrops and my light, left me uncertain.

The one advantage I had there was time. I was not on a schedule and could work around her sleepiness. At first when I started to pose her, she was wide awake. I tried for about 30 minutes and handed her back to her mom for a feeding. Soon she was fast asleep and didn’t mind me contorting her into a squishing pose for me to swiftly go through my newborn workflow.

As I said, I did not have my beanbag. Those of you who have seen my beanbag in action know what I am talking about. It is an impressive size that can hold up to quadruplets and has a fold down back to save me lots of space and time in my studio. The room I used to conduct my Fort Campbell Newborn Photography had a medium size window that was more then waist high off the floor. I needed my surface in which I was to pose her on, to rise to the window. I rearranged my sleeping quarters, using the queen size air mattress as my base. I then dragged both crib size mattresses from my nephews’ crib and batman toddler bed to build it up a little more. After I added all the blankets for comfort, I had the height I needed for the appropriate light in the window. I was a tad impressed with my scene. For certain newborn poses, Cassandra and Jenee helped me out my holding up the back blankets giving me a creamy backdrop falling out of focus, just like I have in my studio.

Time again was an advantage while I stayed at Fort Campbell. I used day one to focus on just Adilyn. Day two was for family portraits. I had talked my youngest sister to fly down with me as a surprise to Cassandra. She never saw her coming! Jenee is a talented, natural hair stylist and I had forgotten about this until the evening before family portraits. Jenee used her skills to create an elegant hairstyle for Cassandra of long locks of curls. Mr. Mills even had his Class A uniform cleaned for the occasion. My mom had made the boys patched vest from upcycled wool suits for Christmas, and they looked dashing for the family portraits.

One Pintrest pose Cassandra wanted was her baby in a bird’s nest. Cassandra refers to Adilyn Wren as Baby Bird. She sent Mr. Mills to Walmart to pick up a couple of bare wreaths in the craft department. We used scarves, knitted wraps to create a comfy base around the nest. I then wrapped her in an “egg shell’ wrap to finish Baby Bird’s portrait.

I am grateful for the experience the unknown can bring. Facing these fears as allowed me to train and grow as a Fort Campbell Newborn Photographer. If you are in need of a newborn photographer for your sweet baby, please give me a call for my full experience at (315) 297-1816 or email me at

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