Disneyland + The sweetest Canadian Family = Perfect setting for the most magical family session ever!
I cannot remember exactly how Julie and I first connected. I think it was in a photography forum online, or maybe it was back in the MySpace days (the world wide web is a crazy yet amazing place) that brought together two photographers from two different countries who would one day connect in real life. We have a lot in common, we both have two boys, we are both photographer’s and we both have a strong love for Disney, our family and all things art. I was trilled when Julie reached out asking if we could possibly connect when they flew out to California for their summer vacation. After a few emails we locked down a location, time, and ultimately decided on the perfect spot to shoot, Disneyland.
Disneyland is truly one of the happiest places on earth so I saying I was beyond pumped to shoot at a place where millions of people travel to experience a glimpse of the magic it has to offer was an understatement. Disneyland is also symbolic to Julie and her husband Travis. For the Jackman’s , Julie shared that with me that Disney has always been a completely magical experience for them. “As a child I only went to Disneyland once. Our honeymoon was my husbands first time on a airplane and we went to Disney world and on a Disney cruise. Our initial hope was to get married on a disney ship, but 17 years ago that wasn’t offered. There are hard to find words to describe it to someone who has never set foot in the parks. Its like eye candy and everyone goes out of their way to make you feel welcome. So much of it is the experience and how you feel while your there.”- Julie
As mentioned above they have two sweet boys, Coen and Carson. Carson their youngest son has Autism and I really wanted to capture some amazing lifestyle photos for the Jackman’s . Julie gave me some wonderful tips of how to connect with Carson sharing his interests of puzzles & other popular little boy things he would enjoy talking about. He did amazing during our family session, laughed, played and enjoying the magical day with his loving family.
One thing I noticed was the strong support and outpour of love that Carson had from his parents, and his older brother Coen. Coen never once hesitated to slow down to ensure Carson had a buddy to walk with, he guided him to rides, he encouraged him when Carson was unsure of riding something that was slightly scary (Pirates of the Caribbean) and was just so patient with his younger brother. The Jackman’s are such an encouraging family and truly rally around Carson which is why I feel he will thrive far in life. I wanted to share some of Julie’s own words regarding what is is like having a child with Autism and tips of how to travel to crowded places yet still make amazing memories so other families can enjoy all that Disney has to offer.
“When we first heard that we had a child with autism I never thought we would be able to travel as we do. Disney makes it easier too. There are quiet spots in most of the parks and the disability pass allows up to wait in the shade away from the crowds for rides. There have been many times too when characters have gone out of their way to approach my little man when he was having a rough day. One day it was raining and a cast member took Carson shoes and dried them because it was upsetting him that they were wet. We also make an effort to travel off peak season through the parks because we know that lines too long will lead to meltdowns. I just want Carson to experience life just like any other child. Sometimes that looks different for us, but you learn to adapt and it just becomes your normal”- Julie Jackman
Jackman Family, thank you so much for having me take these for you, I will never forget the short time we spent together and I loved being able to document a small piece of your Disneyland moments!
Location: Disneyland Parks, Anaheim California
MUA: Crystal Rodriguez
Julie’s dress- Banana republic
Boy’s clothing-Zara Boys
Travis- Shirt- Ralph Lauren