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CBM Photo | Carmen Michael bio picture
  • That's me on the left, I'm Carmen! I live in Birmingham, Alabama with my amazing husband, my redheaded son, Walt, and our Jack Russell Terrier, Heidi. I have a B.A. in Studio Art/Photography from the University of Alabama, and I founded CBM PHOTO in 2008.

    My love affair with photography began with a hot pink 3x5 camera. As a little girl, I would pose my friends, toys, and dogs with the goal of getting the perfect shot. Twenty years later I'm still shooting away, always on the quest for the next ideal shot. What else am I (almost always) on the lookout for? Taco Casa, golden hour lighting, newborn props, sweet tea, Walt's lovey, Heidi's collar, Ikea, a parking spot, inspiration, The Office episodes, and John Mayer.

    There's LOTS of info around here, so stay and have a look around. For pricing, info, or to shoot me an email, head right up top. Scroll on down for some of the newest shoots and news.

Sidney | 3 Year Portraits | Hoover, Alabama Family & Children’s Photography

Try if you must, but I don’t think you’re going to find a more expressive 3 year old than Sidney! She gave me EVERY sort of facial and emotional expression she was feeling in each moment of our shoot. Um, perfect! 

I’ve been shooting Sidney’s portraits since she was just a few days old, and this fall she celebrated her 3rd birthday! It’s been such a blast working with her wonderful family and I’m so thankful for our yearly get together’s. There’s a wonderful park in their backyard with beautiful light, so we made the 5 minute walk and Sid was ready to go! If you look closely, you might get a glimpse of the family dog, Radley, running in the background. She wasn’t as thrilled with the orderly portrait making, but we managed to wrangle her into a few family portraits. 

Happy 3rd birthday to one of my favorite girls to photograph…her Mama and Lala are lucky to have such a sweet girl! 

Want a look back at Sidney’s past portraits? Here ya go: Newborns, 4 Months, 8 Months, 1 Year, 2 Year

 

CBM 6171 1024x765 Sidney | 3 Year Portraits | Hoover, Alabama Family & Childrens Photography
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Fall Mini Session Favorites | Birmingham, Alabama Children and Family Photography

This year’s fall mini sessions were the most successful ever! An amazing two days full of adorable families, cute outfits, and plenty of belly laughs. I wanted to share a few of my favorites from each session, though that task was pretty difficult. 

If you’re a new follower, typically I host mini sessions twice a year: spring and fall. I’m SO thankful for each and every client that comes back each year for full or mini session. If you’re an old follower, I’m sure you’ll recognize a few familiar faces in this LOOONG post! 

Enjoy these awesome families and thank you for an incredible turn out this year!

CBM 64491 1024x765 Fall Mini Session Favorites | Birmingham, Alabama Children and Family Photography
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The Road to Growing our Family & Why I’m Thankful for Morning Sickness

maternity 1024x759 The Road to Growing our Family & Why Im Thankful for Morning Sickness
My computer screen is illuminating my 21 week baby bump and baby girl Michael is gently kicking me. I’m officially half way through this pregnancy, morning sickness has mostly subsided, so I wanted to finally share our road to growing our family.

Shortly after Walt turned 1, we started seriously discussing our plans for baby #2.  I’m pretty sure I decided I was ready for another baby about 5 minutes after nursing Walt for the last time. Nursing and being pregnant was essentially on my list of wants. As we welcomed the 2014 year, it was officially the year of baby #2. The decision to have another baby wasn’t an easy one, our first few months with Walt were difficult. Our first born had colic. There were days and nights of walking, nursing, swaying, rocking, and wondering what to do next. The possibility of facing that again along with caring for a young toddler was… daunting. Of course, we both came to realize we wanted more children and this was our time. Difficult times were hard to forget, but so were the wonderful ones.

 After a hand full of months of negative pregnancy tests, those 2 positive lines finally made their appearance in late spring. I immediately took Walt to the bookstore to pick out his big brother book, and we waited impatiently for Kent to come home from work. About 6 weeks along, we were excited to see our baby’s first ultrasound. As Kent struggled to keep Walt’s temper tantrums at bay, my doctor was afraid he couldn’t find the baby’s heartbeat. There was a baby to see, but no beating speck to behold. To say we were blindsided is an understatement. I had no warning signs. Nothing felt off.  It was a missed miscarriage. The tears came and as I rounded the corner to Kent’s mom walking a now sleeping Walt around, my knees buckled and I fell into her arms. I came home depressed and numb.

 The following week, still no signs or symptoms of miscarrying, I opted for a D & C. The hardest part was knowing that I would walk out of the hospital no longer pregnant. It not only felt like we had lost a child we’d never get to meet, but months of trying and pregnancy were wasted. Time was taken away from me. Selfishness and depression were hard to shake. After weeks of recovery, prayer, and a much needed vacation, we were ready to start over again. I’d never done more research and forum reading than I did in that time. My heart was breaking for the women I found on forums that had been trying for years to have a baby. The more I talked about it with friends and family, the more I realized I was surrounded by women who had experienced miscarriage before. When talking with my aunt about the baby we’d lost, she said something that I’ll never forget and it totally changed my perspective… “Jesus’ face was the first thing your baby saw.”

 The week after coming home from our family vacation, I was surprised and overwhelmed to find a positive pregnancy test staring back at me. Naturally, Kent was cautious for the first trimester, even as morning sickness hit me hard and we saw the baby’s sweet heartbeat. I’m not cautious by nature, but I was highly aware of how my body was responding to this pregnancy. Every appointment was reassuring and every pound gained was welcomed. Sure, morning sickness isn’t fun, but it is a daily reminder that all is well with my little one. She’s growing, she’s getting stronger. Morning sickness, I am thankful for you.

 With the second half of pregnancy underway and our guards down a bit, I am feeling settled with what our road has looked like this year. It’s been both joyous and incredibly difficult. The joy of a healthy baby girl is all that we could ever hope and ask for. Walt’s baby sister will make her appearance sometime in late March (maybe even early April), and we are thankful.