Penny + Tim

February 9, 2021


These two wonderful people are my parents and these are some of my absolute favorite photos. Not because their outfits are the most Pinterest-worthy photos, not because we had those perfect sunny rays shining on the beach, and definitely not because my dad played along perfectly – hint: he definitely felt awkward and he made sure I knew that! No, these are some of my absolute favorite photos because they so perfectly capture my parents as they are. Plus, they were taken on a beautiful beach in Curacao for the session!

Now I should probably back up. My parents moved down to Curacao in February of 2019 to pursue unique job opportunities. So of course I HAD to go visit them while they were living the island beach life. Of course I wanted to do a few sessions while I was on the island so my mom was able to set up a couple with some of her coworkers. Well my family and I showed up to the rocky beach a bit early and as we were waiting the time out I convinced my parents to jump in front of the camera for a few shots, comfy clothes and all. You see, my parents were early investors in my photography education (well, all of my education really!) and I said for years I wanted to thank them by gifting them a couples session so I could capture their love and help them have a fun evening of goofing off and snuggling together.

I should mention another reason why these are some of my absolute favorite photos. These are a few of the last photos I have of my parents together because my dad passed away this past August.

This is the only session I was able to have with my parents, and I’m so glad I was able capture them during such a fun and carefree time of their lives. My dad absolutely loved island time and he came to life in a way I had never seen before. He was so happy whenever I spoke to him and he couldn’t wait to tell me about his new hobby: scuba diving. Mom loved the island so much she decided to stay an extra year to soak up all of those sun rays and eat all of the delicious food. I still have my memories of my dad, but I’m so glad I have these images as well of my parents.

Curacao beach session

My dad was the outdoorsy type for sure. He worked outside laying electrical conduit at the Newport News shipyard in Virginia and he played outside, too. He was always active and a few of his favorite activities included hang gliding, rock climbing, and hiking. He encouraged my brother and I to try out different sports as well and would skateboard at the skatepark, play street hockey, and even take a Kung Fu martial arts class with us. So when he got down to the island it was no surprise that he picked up scuba diving.

Curacao beach session

My dad was a real jokester, always trying to make us laugh. We communicated through movie quotes (hence my secret talent!) and he instilled in me my love for classic rock. I went to so many concerts with my dad – Journey, Foreigner, Styx, Cheap Trick, REO Speedwagon, Heart, and Def Leppard just to name a few – and as of 6 months later I will walk into a store playing classic rock and be brought to tears, which I have a feeling will be a permanent struggle.

My parents were always laughing together because they are both adorable dorks.
Curacao beach session
Curacao beach session

This picture is the epitome of my parents. My dad was always cracking up my mom and both of them would laugh together.

Curacao beach session

This is my favorite photo of my dad’s smile. I can’t remember what all was said, but his face just lit up. This shows all of his wrinkles and laugh lines and his goofy smile. Sadly none of these photos really do his beautiful blue eyes justice but they seriously popped whenever he wore this shirt. Though I do feel like I need to apologize to my mom though because I know this is not the most flattering shot of her….. SORRY MOM!

Curacao beach session
Curacao beach session

This was my dad’s go-to when getting photos taken. Throwing them bunny ears!

Curacao beach session

If you would like to see my parent’s full session of giggles and snuggles on a Curacao beach, hop on over here!



Ariel Kaitlin


Serving fun + joyful couples in
North Carolina + beyond