My Fave Pic: Adrianne O’Kane

Photographer Adrianne O’Kane lives for “capturing sweet moments for families.” Her love of photography began before she even realized it was happening. Growing up, she would look through family snapshots, which helped give her a sense of family and history. Photography classes in high school sealed the deal and eventually O’Kane scored her bachelor’s in photography from the University of Central Missouri. How did she become so deft at taking pics of kids? “I was hired to go to preschools to take pictures and later became a studio manager at a volume portrait studio,” says O’Kane. “Both positions gave me the opportunity to really hone my skills at getting kids to take adorable portraits, while still having tons of fun and being silly.” Now O’Kane owns Zendejas Photography in Lee’s Summit, Missouri—where her focus is on people. From babies to families, high-school seniors to weddings, she’s found her niche in creating unique, memorable portraits. “I want something you and your family will be able to cherish for years to come,” says O’Kane.

When asked about her all-time favorite photo, one came to mind quickly. A spontaneous photo that she caught merely by happenstance. Here’s how the shot came together:

“This particular family has allowed me to photograph many milestones in their lives—including an engagement session at the Liberty Memorial with Union Station in the background and their wedding in Belton. I was privileged to photograph their sweet baby, Emma when she was just about a week old. I loved being there for all the precious moments in their lives.

When I took this image, I knew it was magic. I love when a family is connecting and being themselves and enjoying each other. That—combined with a great backdrop—that’s how I know I’ve got a great shot. I was setting up and they were just entertaining their little one. It made for a perfect moment for me to capture.

The photo just shows how much love the husband and wife have for one another while also showcasing their love for their little one. I coach my clients through many poses, but sometimes the best poses are ones that they do while just being themselves. On top of the emotion in this image, I love the leading lines of the bridge. It draws your eye towards the family. The family also did a great job of tying their color scheme together nicely.

The one thing that always kind of surprises me is when people are so shocked at the images and say, ‘That is so Emma!’ or ‘That is so Finn, that looks just like him!’ I’m able to catch those natural expressions they see at home all the time—the ones we sometimes lose when there’s a camera in our face and we get self-conscious about having our picture taken.”

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