Filled with warmth and love, we adore The Cantrell’s cozy in-home family session. Nothing beats the comfort of home and mama Alex who is also a wedding planner has a keen eye for detail and after years of renovating, created the aesthetic of their abode. With every corner of the home so perfectly designed, all five members of the family lit up each space with their energy and smiles. Nashville family photographer, Erin Fox Families focused on capturing the real, raw moments rather than those that are perfectly posed. The personalities and abundance of love in each image are so evident; making us love each photo you’re about to see that much more!
Tell us all about the family!
Sarah (photographer): The Cantrells are a very warm and inviting family. They are down to earth, fun, loving people. Alex is an incredible designer and wedding planner. She has a very distinct style. This style runs through their home, their wardrobe, and everything she does. I have worked events with her in the past, and each is truly unique and personal. Just by walking in their home, you can feel the warmth of this family and their space.
Alex (Mama): Hi! We are the Cantrells. We have three boys- Leo (5), Jack(2), and Hank (7mo now..3mo at the time of the shoot). My husband and I met at Lipscomb. I grew up here and he moved here for college from McMinnville, TN. We were married in 2014 and started the process of adoption to bring our firstborn, Leo, home in 2016. I am an event designer and also have my hands in some home design and real estate, and TJ is a Nurse Practitioner in the ER. As a family, we love to be outside, create lots of crafts, cook, go to the zoo, and simply just spend time together.
What was the concept for your shoot? What was your vision?
Alex: Erin had the vision! She wanted the photos to be candid moments of us in our home. This worked out great for us because getting all of our boys to look at the camera at the same time is nearly impossible. I photos perfectly capture the phase of life we are in, and I love having those memories on film.
Erin: I wanted to create imagery that felt very genuine to them. I went in ready to embrace the unexpected, leaving room for real moments to unfold instead of forcing a narrative or heavily posing the family. We shot in some of the living areas in their home and their front yard – I just wanted them to feel like themselves. The two older boys broke out their toy blocks and showed me their rocket ships and robots. I wanted the photos to be a reflection of the kids’ imagination and personalities. We went outside for a few photos throwing leaves. The big kids were ready to run around so I encouraged it and it made for some really sweet photos. I told Alex not worry about what the house looked like, or if they kids weren’t “cooperating” for photos. I truly believe some of the best moments in motherhood and parenthood are the messy ones, and those deserve to be captured and shared just as much as anything else. However, when you look at the photos, you don’t think a thing about the house, or if the kids are cooperating, you just see a family being a family – and I love that. They are really a sweet bunch!
How did your kids react during the photo shoot?
Alex: Whew, it was a rough day. They are typically pretty good at listening, but this day in particular they were pretty difficult to get to cooperate. Erin was so patient with them and us and made me feel at ease even though the kids were going crazy. I really appreciated her calmness and patience with us. Our main challenge was getting the boys to cooperate!
Erin: They were great! I just wanted them to do what they do every day – play with their toys, run around outside, love on their new baby brother.Three kids, all at a very young age, and one a baby, always feels like a challenge. Especially for the parents. But I went into it looking for the imperfect specifically, and encouraged mom and dad to embrace the crazy, and because of that we were able to get some really sweet and raw moments.
What was it like working with your photographer?
Alex: She was wonderful. Erin is so patient, kind, and calm amidst the chaos. It was a great experience and we would love to take more photos with her in the future. I love that she uses film. The quality of film is so beautiful and timeless. She is so talented!