Category Archives: Family Photography

Damenick and her ‘Joe-Joe-Bear’ are MARRIED!!

OH! MY! GOODNESS!  Could this couple be any more precious?!  The weather was beautiful, it would have been so much hotter if it wasn’t for the crazy wind!  On June 10, 2017 two hearts became one in front of family and friends who traveled all the way across the world to witness this occasion.  It’s not hard to believe these two were meant to be, by the way Joe looks at Damenick when she walks in the room.  Or the way he looks at Avery their daughter when she’s playing off to the side.  These two can lock eyes from across the room and know what the other is thinking.  I have seen it first hand.


D and J (56 of 135)


The day went off without a hitch Thanks to the wonderful and lovely Lisa Heeter and all of the amazing vendors.  The flower arrangements were from Holiday Floral.  They were stunning and lasted forever considering the heat and the wind. The chair covers were from Julie Fell at Julie’s Chair Covers.  Great quality and absolutely beautiful!  Dj was Rich from Encore DJ. Great music, and super nice guy!  And the ceremony and cocktail music was provided by Adam Newton.  Such a talented Musician.  His voice was so perfect, and played the guitar with such ease and grace.  The coordinator from Railside Golf Course was Donna and her lovely assistant Kelsey.  Thank you for being so accommodating, helpful, generous and such wonderful people!


D and J (131 of 135)


I first had the pleasure of photographing Joe and Damenick with Damenick’s side of the family for a family photo session in Fall of 2016.  I was able to meet a ton of family members and it’s easy to fit in with how accepting, patient and kind everyone is.  It’s not everyday you meet people that are so laid back and truly believe in what happens, happens. And, are completely comfortable with the ‘go with the flow’ attitude.


D and J (114 of 135)


From the girls getting ready, to the guys getting ready, to the first look, it was a day full of love and laughter.  Friends and family witnessed two hearts becoming one on a day that will be remembered and cherished forever.  It was a joy and pleasure to be such a huge part of their day.  One that I will truly remember forever and will always hold a special place in my heart!D and J (36 of 135)


After all of the necessary items on a wedding day.  We slipped away to take bride and groom photos, and it could not have been any better.  The beautiful venue at Railside Golf Course was perfectly set up for us.  From the trees, to the green, to the flowers, stairs and tunnel.  There is not one thing I would change, and cannot wait to one day go back!


D and J (2 of 2)Love is such a beautiful thing, and when two people are destined for each other, they will find each other.  There is nothing to be done except follow it’s lead…

Please contact me anytime to schedule your wedding consultation today!

(269) 599-2094

www.kthornphoto.com

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Family Reunion Photo Shoot

I know it was just a Memorial Day weekend gathering, however when it extends beyond just siblings and parents.  I personally call that a family reunion.  And it was parents, kids, aunt, uncle, cousins and grand kids.  So, I would call that a Family Reunion!


 

Dillon Color (53 of 88)


The weather was supposed to rain for several days on this Sunday.  We waited until that morning to fully decide if we were going to do the photo shoot because they really wanted morning photos.  With the direction of the sun, and the view of the lake.  It turned out to be a perfect Memorial weekend this year.


Dillon Color (73 of 88)


Okay, we have to talk about the kids first.  Of course, right!  These kids were absolutely adorable!  They were amazing to work with and honestly, when you get this many kids together you have a tendency to have chaos.  And, in fact we had the exact opposite.  I was able to organize 21 people including the kids and didn’t have to Photoshop a single head!!  (Just kidding I don’t do that anyway! That’s not the type of photography I do!)  The two young ladies were so helpful with their cousins!  It was their help that truly made this photo!


Dillon Color (35 of 88)


Of course we had to get a photo with all of the girls in it.  There’s something about having all of the girls in a family and all of the guys in a family to take a photo. Probably my favorite part of family photos is doing this.  There’s such a special bond between them.  Like almost a family secret that no one knows except them.


Dillon Color (79 of 88)


YES!  That sky is real!  I did not add a fake sky to it!  It was seriously that beautiful outside!!!!!


Please contact me anytime Day or night to schedule your family photo session!

(269) 599-2094

www.kthornphoto.com

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Happy Anniversary!!!

 

Hannah and Kaleb Trash the dress (19 of 43)



Hard to believe it’s already been a year since my first wedding, and my first trash the dress session.  Happy Anniversary to the couple that changed my life, and my career.  Happy anniversary to an amazing couple!!

One year ago Hannah and Kaleb said ‘I do’.  I remember it was supposed to rain and all of a sudden the forecast changed.  Kaleb sent Hannah flowers and a note while she was getting ready at the salon and in it, it said, ‘P.S. No Rain Today’.

I have to admit, this was a very emotional wedding for me.  I cried all day long along side everyone else.  Hannah and Kaleb were surrounded by amazing friends and family.  Their support system is absolutely beautiful!





The wedding took place at Southern Exposure in Battle Creek, Michigan.  The venue was absolutely gorgeous.  All of the flowers were in bloom and amazing property gave us so much to work with.

Hannah’s mom Ellen was such a huge part of her day.  In fact she is the one I met first.  As a mother myself I know how important it is to make sure your kids have everything they need or want.  And, Ellen was right there to save the day several times. The bond that Hannah and Ellen share is a bond I hope to have with my daughter as she gets older.



I wish Hannah and Kaleb all the joy and happiness this world has to offer. They were such a joy to work with, sweet, kind and absolutely wonderful!  It’s amazing how ‘just being the photographer’ in a wedding means so much.  I was there to watch their story unfold.  I was there to capture memories they will cherish and remember forever.

This is why I am a photographer.  This is why I love my career!

Contact me anytime to schedule an appointment!

www.kthornphoto.com

(269) 599-2094

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Anniversary Shoot

This adorable and sweet couple just celebrated their 30th anniversary.  I have been trying to talk to these two into a photo shoot for a while and finally succeeded!  I am so glad they finally agreed.  Beth and Scott are naturals in front of the camera.  The love they have for one another is a love that all couples strive to have.  A love that is patient and kind and is shown through all aspects of life.  If I didn’t know them, I would seriously guess that they were still in their honeymoon phase the way they talk to each other.


Beth and Scott Hunter (2 of 32).JPG


The original plan was to photograph at their house.  And, due to some landscaping projects that had been on hold and still were going on.  We decided to go to the park where Beth grew up close by.  And, where she raised her kids by.  Milham Park


Beth and Scott Hunter (5 of 32)


I have known Beth for several years now!  It has been a joy and pleasure to know her and Scott.  They are so down to earth, and genuinely caring, kind and absolutely the most wonderful people!  Beth and Scott Hunter (19 of 32)


Normally, most men do not like their photo taken and I usually get that the standard, “Well, that was fun.” Response from most people.  The reason for this is because I do my best to get people to just interact with one another.  I try to capture who they are.  I don’t want people to pretend to be someone they’re not because that doesn’t feel natural and it doesn’t look natural. I want all of my clients to feel comfortable in front of the camera and very rarely do I say “Ok, now Smile!”  I don’t have to say that usually because I can get natural smiles all on their own!


Beth and Scott Hunter (17 of 32)


It’s my goal for my business for my clients to look back on their photos in 10, 20 or even 30 years and say, “I had so much fun during that session, I wonder what Krystal is doing now?!”  If I can leave an impact on someone like that, then my business is a success!  And this is how I run each session.  I do my best to make my clients look great, to have fun and to leave positive lasting memories!


Beth and Scott Hunter (30 of 32)


I say this all the time, and I cannot say it enough.  When love is present it is easy to photograph!  If it’s there, it’s there.  And, if it’s not, it’s really hard to fake love in a photo!


Beth and Scott Hunter (26 of 32)


Please, contact me anytime to schedule your session today!

(269) 599-2094

www.kthornphoto.com

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Couples Shoot

I was extremely excited when Ellen contacted me to photograph her and her husband Mark.  Ellen and Mark are Hannah’s parents.  I met Ellen before I actually met anyone else in their family.  Ellen is a teacher, and you can tell by being around her because of her patience and vibrant personality.  A quality someone that works with children must have.


E and M Huyser (1 of 40)


One of my favorite memories of Hannah and Kaleb’s wedding was talking to Mark right before he saw Hannah for the first time.  I knew it was going to be an emotional moment by the way he talked about Hannah, that this was his little girl.  He was so happy for her and so excited for her to marry Kaleb.


E and M Huyser (13 of 40)


I made a point of photographing Ellen and Mark where I photographed Hannah’s maternity photos.  I wanted them to share a common special place.  Although neither of them knew it, I pointed it out after the fact.

I always say this, but you cannot pose love.  Either it’s there or it’s not.  And, when it’s there it’s easy to capture.


E and M Huyser (31 of 40)


The weather is always an issue when shooting outdoor photos.  Living in Michigan we never really know how it’s going to turn out.  Will the sun be out?  Will it rain?  Will the ground be wet?  Will it be overcast?  It’s always a guessing game up until the moment.  On this day it was perfect.  The temp was just right, and the weather could not have been better!


E and M Huyser (36 of 40)


Mark informed me that the only ‘kissy’ photo they had was the one on their wedding day.  So, it was only natural to get one.  Mark had just told Ellen all of the reasons why he loved her, and why she was the one.  This is true love at it’s finest!


E and M Huyser (39 of 40)


One request Mark and Ellen had was to get a photo just like their engagement photo.  And, this is there photo, the one we recreated to match their engagement photo.

It’s always important to get photos of you with your spouse, significant other or you with your family.  It’s not always easy to be in the photos, but it is necessary!!

 




Contact me anytime to schedule your appointment!

(269) 599-2094

www.kthornphoto.com

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Today is my Birthday!

Well, I am 33 years old today.  My birthdays are always bittersweet because of my past.  Every year I go back n forth on if I want to talk about it, and I never do.  I decided this year I will no longer keep quiet.

  “I spent my 18th birthday in a domestic violence shelter after my dad had beat me up for the last time.”  

Growing up I was a victim of domestic violence.  From my mom, dad and sister.  I don’t know how many times my sister bashed my face into the ground, spread rumors through town about me, and did her best to make sure everyone hated me as much as she hates me.  She’s also 10 years older than me, so when I was 8 she was 18.  She hates me to this day and really has no reason to, other than the fact that I was born.

My sister would disappear with her kids for 8 months and during that time my mom would mope around and act like I didn’t exist.  She would ignore me and constantly say how my sister and her kids weren’t coming back.  Then, out of no where my sister would show up, move her and her kids in with my parent and I and disrupt our entire lives.  Anything that was mine was given to her and her kids.  I would have to give up my room, all of my belongings, privacy and anything they wanted they got.  I had to spend the majority of middle school studying underneath the kitchen sink to get away from everyone.  It was awful.  My sister would stay for 3 months and then disappear again for 8 months.  Continuing this perpetuating cycle for YEARS!

While my sister was around and my mom was at work, my dad would sit in his chair and watch TV while my sister would drag me through the house by my hair, bash my face in and anything else she wanted to do.  My dad didn’t do anything.  No one protected me, no one looked out for me.  I was all alone.  Anytime I tried to stick up for myself, I was shushed and treated like an awful person because I thought I deserved respect.

My dad would get mad and that was it.  He would punch me in the face all the time when he was angry.  He threw a shoe and knocked me out one time because it was left in the middle of the floor.   I was the family punching bag.  IN FACT, My left front tooth is mostly fake from being punched in the face.

What mother actually stays with a man that violently attacks her children?!  I never understood it.  I spent more of my life hating myself and wanting to die than actually living my life.  I have spent over two decades of my life trying to get people to just ‘LIKE’ me, that in reality, actually truly hate me and wish I’d never been born.


Thornton Krystal Boudoir (1 of 16)


During all of this I was bullied in school, rumors were spread about me, and I was treated badly at school because I lived in a trailer.  So, not only was I not wanted at home, I was not liked at school either.  When I was 14 I took a handful of Tylenol 4’s from the cupboard and went to bed.  I remember thinking, ‘This is it, my life is over.’  I wasn’t sad, I wasn’t mad. I WAS JUST DONE.

I tried to get help.  I went to a teacher in 8th grade and asked for help.  She told Social Services and a case worker came out to the house.  This person never even talked to me.  They talked to my mom, dad and sister and they all convinced this person that I was mentally unstable.  So, it was my fault….  Again.  Everything was always my fault.  It was my fault the house was always messy, it was my fault we never did anything.  IT. WAS. MY. FAULT!


Thornton Krystal Boudoir (12 of 16)


I spent my whole life thinking there was something wrong with me and when I went to my mom during middle school telling her I wanted to die.  That was it.  Medicated for the next 5 years.  Because I was beaten, verbally and mentally abused.  There was something wrong with ME.  Because I was depressed…  Makes sense right?! The medication finally threw me into a seizure and I was diagnosed with Epilepsy.  Medication induced Epilepsy.

When I was 17 I had, had enough.  My dad had punched me for the last time and ended up being put on probation for it this time.  I spent my 18th birthday in a domestic violence shelter.  Do you know what it’s like to spend such a monumental birthday in such an awful place?  Not the place, but the fact that your mother would rather stay with an abusive man, or that the people who created you, hated you so much they would rather beat you, break you and let you disappear without a trace than to actually care or even help you…

“What doesn’t kill you definitely makes you stronger!”

That year I lived out of a clothes basket and lived at 8 different places.  Losing an item I never regained at each place.  I was in a relationship with a loser and ended up getting pregnant at 20.  I dropped him like a sack of potatoes and pushed myself to succeed.

I worked full time, went to school full time.  My dad had left my mom and my mom watched my daughter.  That is until I met the love of my life.  My knight in shining armor.  The person that changed my life for the better and does still everyday to this day.

I am a high school drop out, with a G.E.D. and a Bachelors’ degree in accounting.  I own my own photography business and it’s thriving!


Practice Self (6 of 6)

I don’t talk to any of them.  I don’t need them, and I refuse to let people who hate me, or wish I didn’t exist bring me down anymore.  I spent over 25 years of MY life trying to get these people to like me.  I will not waste another second!

All I have ever wanted was to feel loved, to be happy and not feel the emptiness that my past has created.  I spent so many years thinking about the person I could have become if I would have had a better upbringing.  I’ve dealt with so many hardships in such a short lifetime.

 

There’s more, and maybe some day I will tell the rest.  But, for now, this all I am comfortable with telling.  It hurts still, and the wounds may never fully heal.  But I will look at this emptiness and tell it everyday of my life ‘You will not hurt me anymore, You cannot have me, and I don’t belong here.  I belong in the light!’



Practice Self (4 of 6)




I honestly, want to dedicate my success to television, movies and TV shows.  If it wasn’t for watching Rocky‘ ‘Goonies‘ ‘The Cosby’s‘ ‘Family Matters‘ ‘Full House and ‘Tool Time‘.  I don’t think I would have known how awful my life was back then.  I knew it wasn’t right, I knew things were off.  Because why would all of these TV shows depict decent people doing decent things.  Being honest, hardworking all while loving their family, if it wasn’t supposed to be like that.

If you ever thought that movie, or TV show that shows good families hurt or help kids.  Then, here’s your answer.  I know it was TV that saved me, and wanting that ‘TV Family’.

Because of my rough past it make it so very important to me to be able to capture the happy moments in people’s lives.

While I had an absolutely awful upbringing, and never knew what true love was until I met my husband.  I know that my life is better without them.  I know that I am destined for great things.  And, when I get there, I will wave from the top!




Contact me anytime to Schedule your Session today!

(269) 599-2094

www.kthornphoto.com

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com

Willson Maternity

Well this past year has been a whirlwind for this mama.  Marriage, a house, pregnancy and deployment of her husband.

I first met Hannah over a year ago when she interviewed me to be her wedding photographer.  Not a day goes by that I am not thankful to have met her and her wonderful family.  It has been quite the year for Hannah and Kaleb.  I can look back and see how all of these obstacles have brought them closer together.


Willson Maternity (1 of 26)


Photographing such an important moment in their lives is truly a treasure.  It’s not everyday you have a baby and it’s not everyday you can document these moments.  And when you are able to, you should!

I can’t wait to meet baby Willson!  He is such a blessing!  And look how beautiful pregnancy is on this gorgeous Hannah!!


Willson Maternity (25 of 26)


Willson Maternity (16 of 26)


Willson Maternity (13 of 26)


Willson Maternity (11 of 26)


This dress was so beautiful!  It is made out of stretchy material and fit Hannah perfectly!!!  The crown was an addition that I absolutely loved!


Willson Maternity (9 of 26)


Willson Maternity (3 of 26)


It’s a joy and an honor to be a parent!  After having each one of my children I have always wondered how I survived without them.  Here are these little people that come into your life turning it upside down and it never goes back to normal.  You never love the same again, you never feel the same again, and most of all you never live the same again.  How is it possible that there was life before a child?!  After having a child your life is more full than you have ever known or have ever experienced.  You imagine what it will be like, but never truly know until that moment when the baby looks you in the eye for the first time and in that moment your life changes completely!  All for the better!


Contact me as soon as possible to schedule your Maternity session today!

www.kthornphoto.com

(269) 599-2094

krystalthorntonphotography@gmail.com