With two teenage boys, our mail brings us numerous high school graduation announcements. Unlike the announcements ordered from the yearbook company when I graduated from high school in 1982, today’s graduation announcements typically feature the graduate’s senior photo. Some announcements feature the whole photo shoot! I enjoy them all.
For a number of years our yard has been the setting for many high school senior portraits. Local photographer Stacy Walker (walkerstudiophoto.com) knocked on our door years ago to ask permission to shoot pictures in our yard. So it’s a common sight in the spring, upon hearing Jed bark at the window, to peer out and see a lovely young lady in the swing with Walker behind the lens; or a handsome student on our rock bench, where we took our son Maxwell’s senior picture (with Jed!). I was inspired this year to take my own picture in the swing.
I knew Walker must have amassed a pretty large collection of photographs taken in our yard, so I asked him. He shared the pictures he took in our yard just this year. I asked him about his process:
“It’s funny because I have these type locations all over town. What I typically do is tell the senior where we’re going once they come in and I see all their outfits. For instance if I’m using your home, I’m typically at the State Hospital right before that. So I may select an outfit for the State Hospital and then another one for a ‘really pretty yard’ I know of right by there. Then when we pull in front of your home I assure them I previously knocked on your door and got permission. It always amazes me because in 15 years no one has EVER said no when I asked to use their yard. I’ve even had people offer to sweep and move things out of the way for me!”
Of course, Walker reminded me he always is really quick and never reveals the name of the homeowner, though some kids obviously knew — because I know them!