Chicago Area Photographer for Children and Families
My name is Marianne Drenthe and I started Marmalade Photography in 2005. My goal then as it is now: to capture beautiful shared moments between family members and document important milestones in children’s lives in a way that is fun, relaxed and joyful. I wish to create memories of a great bonding experience alongside the memories I create for my clients.
My clients choose a variety of settings to showcase their beautiful selves. I often travel to the North Shore of the city to photograph clients in their homes, I often travel into the city, often downtown, to photograph clients in their high rise homes and outdoors using the beautiful city of Chicago as a backdrop. As a family photographer who utilizes mostly natural light creating custom images, I can also easily photograph your favorites in places where the light doesn’t always translate as ideal, we can talk about your ideas for a session when we set up your appointment.
Often you can find me cuddling and snuggling newborns for infant-newborn photography sessions in downtown Chicago, running after busy toddlers as a baby photographer in the suburbs of Chicago and having a great time working with families in their homes throughout Chicagoland as Chicago’s family photographer of choice. I also travel so if you need outside of Chicago photography: I’m your girl!
Some of My Professional Accomplishments as a Professional Photographer
My work has been internationally recognized as a professional baby, child and family photographer, some of which was an important professional milestone for me. I continue to hold my photographic work and customer service to a high exacting standards delivering beautiful images, end products and top notch customer service to my vast clientele.
Some of my travel photography has also appeared in National Geographic Traveler magazine and some other local and international publications. I believe in education on becoming better at my craft and I also believe in helping my fellow photographers along the way. I have written countless articles and tutorials on the craft and art of photography; I have also trained dozens of photographers through the years through my See the Light mentorship and workshop programs and has participated in teaching online to countless photographers via the trade organizations within the professional photography community.
An Open Letter from me, a Chicago Children’s Photographer since 2005
I’ve been blessed to find my true calling so many years ago when I first created Marmalade Photography. I have been blown away by the beauty and grace I see in my client’s every day lives. I have so enjoyed the personal connections that my photography calling has allowed me to have. Lifelong relationships have been cemented and bonded through the viewfinder on my camera and I know all too well how precious these relationships are.
I myself am a mom to two beautiful girls who have grown up before my lens (please see my “PERSONAL WORK” gallery for images of my not-so-littles anymore). My two beautiful daughters are the inspiration behind my creating Marmalade Photography. The name itself is symbolic of my own family and has deep personal meaning to us all:
MAR- MA- LA- DE = Marianne- Madeline- Lauren- Duane
I have personally witnessed the incredibly fast nature of passage of time. Since 2012 I have lost both my parents and a sister in law, have witnessed my daughters grow up from spirited school aged children to sometimes sullen teens and now a 20 something. I have almost gotten through the sometimes tough but often fun teen years and now am living with the reality of my oldest daughter as a college student and my youngest in her senior year of highschool.
In the past decade I have also lost a number of friends, a couple clients and some beloved neighbors who I considered part of my extended family. I regret not photographing some of these friends of mine, spending time capturing their essence, their soul via photos. Honestly I had taken for granted their presence and grace in my life, the soulful brother-from-another-mother who passed away just before my mom did…the lovely neighbor lady who treated my children as her own grandchildren and who will always have a special place in my heart. My former elderly neighbor and beloved friend who passed away tragically 15 years ago. I have also had clients and friends call to possibly schedule sessions, postpone them for whatever reason and within several months a parent had passed away or a brother. The regret these clients and friends expressed at the loss of opportunity to capture them beautifully weighs heavy on them, on me.
If you think it’s time to be professionally photographed…it probably is time
My message to you is that if you’re thinking it’s time for a family photo session or another session to mark the passage of that jerk, TIME, then do it. Because with all heartfelt honesty (and a lot heart break) time passes by too fast.
While in this stage of your life you may be wiping off food stained faces before you know it you will be sitting in the stands at your local high school watching that former toddler graduate and toss their cap & gown high in the air.
Childhood truly goes by way too fast.
Photography of Children and Families in Chicago and in the Suburbs of Chicago
Marianne’s work is most known for the soulful joy filled photography captures that you will find in our vast online portfolio encompassing over a decade of experience photographing families throughout Chicagoland. We love families and we love Chicago!! When you hire Marmalade Photography you may want to have us come to you to photography your family on location in your home or you may want to take the field trip out to the Southwest Chicago Suburbs and be photographed at one of our natural light beautiful locations. Our “Marmalade Locations” are hand picked spots chosen for their natural beauty, seasonal variation and visual interest. But we certainly don’t need a special location to shoot beautiful custom photos of your family – our “On Location” sessions are equally popular and result in equally stunning images.