May 2nd was a Saturday at the beginning of our busy season here in the Berkshires. I had the date booked originally for a wedding, but due to some changes in the couple’s schedule, it was postponed to a later date. I wanted to use this rare opportunity of a free Saturday on a beautiful May day to do something special.
Lately, I have been thinking a lot about how I wanted to expand my charitable contributions in more ways. I feel so fortunate for my community, my business and most of all my family, and I really wanted to give back. The timing worked out with Mother’s Day around the corner, and I thought it might be nice to allow Moms the opportunity to get in front of the camera themselves and have a session with their children. As a Mom myself, I know that time is precious, and capturing memories is so important. So I knew I wanted to do some Mother’s Day mini sessions.
I had read a blogpost that same week by Sarah Petty’s Joy of Marketing where she put forward the idea of collaborating with a retail partner to provide mini sessions that would be donated 100% to a charity. It fit perfectly into what I had been imagining! I immediately thought of partnering with MacKimmie & Co, a beautiful shop in downtown Lenox that sells gorgeous blankets, throws, and elegant gifts. MacKimmie is located in the same complex as my office, and the owners, Doris and Vetus, are the loveliest people you will ever meet. They care about our community so much, and I knew if I approached them with this idea, they would have an open mind and heart.
I thought about what charity I would like to raise money for. I remembered that Tamara Lackey, a children’s portrait photographer, had established a charity called Beautiful Together, that works to improve the quality of the lives of children as they wait to be part of a family through adoption or foster care. I had met Tamara when I was on Creative Live in her studio audience. I have always been so impressed with her compassion and giving heart, and I knew that if she was establishing an organization to help people in need, it had amazing leadership and direction.
I immediately starting advertising the idea through my Facebook page, and eleven families signed up for a 20-minute session each. 100% of their session fee was donated to Beautiful Together, and I provided an additional $35 print credit to each client.
MacKimmie provided refreshments, including cookies from Patisserie Lenox, and also provided a 10% coupon to all families who were photographed and entered them in a raffle for a Hanley throw. I couldn’t have asked for better hosts!
Thank you to everyone who was involved—it was such a beautiful day! Here are some of the photos we captured, plus a look behind the scenes!