“Go get your paper out of the trash, Aimee, and finish the assignment on that piece of paper – not a new one.” The metal feet of my chair squeaked against the tile as I pushed myself away from my desk to go dig my paper out from the trash. As if it wasn’t bad enough that I had smudge marks from my eraser on the thin, grey penmanship paper, now it was all crinkled. I had intended to start fresh. I knew I could write a perfect set of the cursive letter “A.” However, in order to have the perfect row of “A’s,” I needed a new start. Too bad the kindergarten aid had caught me and made me finish what I had started. Really, it was a lesson that doing my best involved mistakes. But, a perfectionist like me wants it to look pristine. I haven’t changed too much since I begrudgingly finished out my letters on that day in 1986. Unfortunately, that means that I will redo an assignment until I am 100% sure every single element is correct.
This perfectionist approach to editing my first newborn session made it a rather…mmm…long assignment. I quickly realized that, despite all the advances, Lightroom 4 was going to limit my ability to create creamy skin tones and the picture perfect edited photograph. Oh, yeah, and the fact that I am just learning to use this software. After watching a whole bunch of Lynda.com tutorials, and even more trial and error, I gave myself a deadline. It would be nice, I thought, to deliver these images before this baby is practicing her penmanship in kindergarten! So, without further delay, re-editing, doing is all over again…Here is Miss Ellie:
I once had a professor who complained that her family had spent hours attributing each feature to various family members. It was to the extent that she lamented, “There wasn’t anything of my baby left after they got done!” I’d guess that most of us, myself included, tend to remark on the likeness of a baby to the mom, dad, siblings, grandparents, etc.; but, what a miracle that all these features are combined in such perfection as to reveal a new and completely original little being.
There is something so precious about newborns. You get those first days with only a few (or many) waking hours in which to admire how perfect each feature has been formed inside your belly. Asleep so much at the time, they slowly unfurl their fists and let their arms fall to the side.
Miss Ellie’s aunt showed up with heaps of baby clothes lined with pink ruffles. Most of them were embroidered with Ellie’s name, because that just how you do it in Texas! I know that she will talk like a Californian, but I imagine her having a southern accent like her mom in these photographs. “Y’all just can’t get enough of me can you?” No, most definitely not, Miss Ellie!
Now, I know what y’all are thinking (Yes, I’m totally stealing “y’all”). It’s not fair to complain when you have such a pretty and sweet baby to work with. True. This baby girl definitely gets an “A.” In fact, Miss Ellie gets a perfect row of cursive “A’s”!