Day in the Life of a Mom - documentary family films and photos

Shirley Lynne Photography

The person behind the lens and kind words from my clients

This is me, in action with my family. Don't worry, the latte is luke warm at best... isn't that how all Mom's drink their coffee? My family is my world. My number one. But I try to find balance with my many other passions - friends, adventures, nursing, and of course, photography.


I have two daughters and two dogs. The dogs are usually higher maintenance, but they all contribute to the chaos. 

I have a really supportive husband - he gives me the confidence to follow my dreams. (But like most, I still have to convince him to invest in family photos!)

More things I love: ice cream, soccer, outdoor adventures, people (even though I'm an introvert), cooking (except on the days that one or both of the kids are whining), sleep (oh how very much I miss it) and hugs (a warning, I will probably hug you after getting to know your family)!

I live in Calgary, Alberta. I’m a sentimental, community-minded person and I never want to move. But I do love to travel, and am happy to visit small towns, the mountains, or even other provinces for a photography session.

ABOUT ME As your Photographer:

Documentary family photography combines the best of me — mom, wife, nurse, adventurer, and friend — into one meaningful, creative space. I care deeply for the people (and pets) in my life, and my photography clients are no exception.

As a nurse for more than a decade, I find photography asks of me the very same skills: acceptance, empathy, compassion, and patience. I have a deep respect for the fact that I am entering your personal world. I want to capture what makes your family unique and how all the different personalities within your family interact to make it what it is. 

Consider me one more piece in your support network. Someone who understands the challenges that come with motherhood, and who wants to showcase the hard work and love you put into your family. There’s no one right way to be a mom, but the commonality we all share is that we are trying our absolute best, each and every day.


Photography started in the mountains for me, as a way to capture landscapes from various adventures. I created Shirley Lynne Photography in 2013, with an initial focus on weddings. Christina Craft is the photographer who shaped my work most in this genre, through workshops, second shooting opportunities and photographing my own wedding to perfection. If you want to check out the broader range of my work, it can be found at

My documentary family work began in 2016. I did training in that same year with Kirsten Lewis and Jenna Shouldice. (If you're looking for two of the best, check out their websites for stunning examples of what this genre can do.)  Soon after becoming a mother in late-2015, I knew I wanted to focus on motherhood and find a way to capture the daily battles, triumphs, tears, laughs, and lots of love!

Day in the Life of a Mom launched in 2018. Cat McAteer, the most amazing birth photographer, took documentary photos before, during and after my second daughter's birth. This experience solidified the importance of these types of photos - they are by far the most meaningful photos I have of my family and I will cherish them for a lifetime. 

Kind Words

Shirley gave us heirloom photographs that will be cherished by our family well beyond our own lifetime. Inviting Shirley into our home to capture “day in the life” photos was a true pleasure. She has an incredible ability to blend seamlessly into the moment so that real life can unfold. Shirley’s talent goes well beyond the ability to compose a photograph with beautiful lighting- Shirley has an eye for the moments that mean the world to you- the playful moments, the joyous moments, the chaotic moments, the spontaneous moments, the moments you feel stretched and the moments feel your best, the tender moments, and most importantly the irreplaceable moments. Shirley, thank you for sharing your talent with us, it means the world to our family.


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Additional Testimonials


Shirley is absolutely the perfect person to let into your home to help capture the special moments between you and your family! I have used her for maternity photos, documentary photos/day in the life and will be capturing new born photos with her in the near further. Shirley has this way of making you feel so comfortable in front of the camera - my husband doesn’t like “photo shoots” but was totally on board with just being himself and going about our day, interacting with our daughter and then being able to look at the photos and see the love, laughter and occasional tear that was captured. I highly recommend Shirley Lynne Photography for any of the moments in your life that you want to document and cherish for years to come! You won’t be disappointed!

Thank you so much for capturing such precious moments with my family. I feel like time goes by so quickly and my kids change and grow so fast (even in a day) and you managed to freeze time and give us such a beautiful gift of precious moments to look back at.