About Me


Hello there! I'm Summer. Most days you can find me with camera in hand, trying to chase kids and even dogs around for that perfect shot. Or I might be tackling my latest project at home, or trying to get outside in nature for a bit.

I’m mostly known for being the go-to family photographer with a big personality and a good sense of humor. Wife to my amazing husband Eric of 4 years and mom to 3 incredible kids of my own and 2 step kiddos {none of them are really kiddos anymore though...}. Of course we can't forget our Boston Terrier fur babies that are super spoiled, who here in Downers Grove doesn't spoil their pups at Happy Dog Barkery?! We live in Downers Grove, Illinois, but love traveling to Oregon and Wyoming to hike and explore. (We are on the hunt for some new places to see, so shoot me a note if you know some awesome spots off the grid we should check out!)

My journey to becoming a photographer... is not your typical, “I had my first baby, got a nice camera and fell in love” story. Nope! I actually hated having my photo taken so much that I figured out if I was behind the camera, I wouldn't have to be in front of it! And now it is so important to me that moms get IN the pictures with their families.

So I started teaching myself how to use my camera and capture people as they are: beautiful and unique. When I was raising my kids, I realized how quickly it all went by. I needed to freeze each moment as it whizzed by, and I fell head over heels in love with documenting life. Then, my friends and clients started growing their families, and I realized what brings me the most joy is documenting all the chapters of other beautiful souls.

I photograph families who desire to have classic portraits and lifestyle photographs capturing their life. I’m lucky to photograph them as their family stories unfold, from maternity sessions to baby's first year milestone sessions and then growing kids and beyond. Over the last 14 years of photographing children and families, I have learned that my favorite part of my job is developing lasting relationships with my clients. By the time we reach toddler years and beyond, I’m photographing friends!

It’s your life. Your story. Let's capture your moments in art and start telling that story together.

I am so glad you’re here!

XO Summer

Summer Brader Photography Downers Grove