Take my camera....please!

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Take my camera....please!

It was August 23rd, 2017….just 5 years and 1 day previous, I brought her home from the hospital. God, how could it possibly be her first day of Kindergarten!! I thrust my camera into my husband’s hands:

“What do you want me to do with this?” he says.

“Take pictures, it’s a camera!” was my reply.

“You’re so much better at it,” he says, “you should do it.”

“Yes, I know, but I can’t be in the pictures if I am TAKING the pictures”, I pressed on.

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Grandma's Walls...

Grandma's Walls...

Ever since I was a little girl and I’m sure even before then…my Grandma’s walls have been COVERED with photos, artwork and hand-crafted knick-knacks! When I was just a little girl I remember her carrying me around and showing me every single person, telling me their names and their stories. I remember her showing us all the different hand-crafted items and telling us the story of who made it or why she purchased it…because there was always a story!

My Grandma and Grandpa....the lady who keeps all the memories, and the man who loves her!

My Grandma and Grandpa....the lady who keeps all the memories, and the man who loves her!

Grandma’s walls tell the story of Grandma’s life. They are a visual representation of all that is important to Grandma, and all the history that is important to us! They show where her parents got married, Aunts and Uncles who have since passed, her daughter who is now in heaven. They show us as little kids, as pimple-faced teens, as newly-weds, as expectant parents, and as actual parents! Her walls hold actual works of art painted by my father, and “priceless” works of art painted by my children. Her curio cabinets hold precious baubles created by my Aunt before her passing, and exquisite creations made by my Grandpa’s sister!  If you’ve ever sent her a photo card for Christmas (or any other holiday), I can guarantee you will find that picture hung somewhere on her wall!

Why am I telling you this? Because I want you know the importance of having photos hung on your walls, or put in albums for your children to see. My children walk around my Grandma’s house in awe, pointing out all the people they know, and comparing themselves to the photos. There is a picture of me that my daughter swears is her. There is a picture of my husband and I at our wedding that my littlest always looks at and says “Mommy, you were a REAL princess!” They ask my Grandma about places and people and things, and my Grandma happily tells them the same stories she told me! Her walls are connecting many generations….and yours can too!!

In today’s digital age, fewer and fewer people are hanging their stories on their actual walls. We rely on our Facebook wall and our Instagram feeds to convey our stories. Who knows what will happen in the future, but I urge you to print your photos, and hang your “priceless” artwork. Let your walls tell the story of your life for future generations. I want my grandkids to look at my walls the way we look at my Grandma’s walls, I want them to be inspired and feel connected to past generations!

Finding the perfect family photographer.....and why it matters!

Finding the perfect family photographer for you…..and why it matters!

I always dread that one day at the beginning of the school year, the day when my sweet little child comes running into the house, school picture form in hand. “Mommy, mommy, mommy!! Here’s the form for my school pictures, you’re gonna buy some, right?” I hate to break her perfectly pig-tailed little heart, but I’m NOT buying those! I know what you’re thinking, you’re thinking it’s because I’m a photographer and I don’t need to buy someone else’s photos of my kids (you’d be surprised, most photos I get of them are awful!) But, you ask me any way…”Why not?” Well, I’ll tell you….it’s like this: while those photos may LOOK like my little girl, they show none of her personality! They show none of her spunk, none of her sass, none of her “crazy-hair-don’t-care” attitude…they just aren’t her! When I pay someone for photos of my children, I want something that reminds me of how awesome they are, not just a record that they existed in the 3rd grade!

                                   Miss Spunky, Miss Sassy, and Miss "Crazy-Hair-Don't-Care"

                                   Miss Spunky, Miss Sassy, and Miss "Crazy-Hair-Don't-Care"

 

So many things to consider……

The first step in finding your perfect family photographer is to think about what you would like to see hanging on your walls! There are so many things to consider, like: do you prefer being in a studio, in your home, or outside? Do you prefer posed shots or more candid and connected shots? Does their personality work with your family dynamic? Do they offer styling or outfit suggestions? Does your photographer offer prints and wall art? Does any of that even matter?

                               It's the little moments and laughter I want to remember the most! 

                               It's the little moments and laughter I want to remember the most! 

To studio or not to studio?…that is the question!

The location and the style of your photos kinda-sorta go hand in hand! If you love lifestyle photography or a more connected candid look and feel, you will more likely choose to have your session in your home or somewhere outdoors. But if you want a more posed look you could opt to visit a photographer in their studio instead! For example, I have 5 children….I am terrified that they would destroy the photographer’s studio and would prefer an outdoor location where I know they can run around for a few minutes if they can’t control themselves. I can also get pictures of us walking and holding hands, or playing in the autumn leaves. I personally choose a more lifestyle/candid style for my family photos. However, I have friends that love the more traditional posed studio look to hang on their walls. Luckily, we all get to choose what we love!

                                                           Just a boy and his doggy!!

                                                           Just a boy and his doggy!!

Let’s talk personality, session styling, and other services…..

We all have one, sometimes its big and loud, sometimes quiet and shy! Now is the time to get on the phone with prospective family photographers and get to know them a bit. Ask a lot of questions, hear their voice, get a feel for how your shoot will go! This is important!! You don’t want to have email-only conversations with your photographer only to find that their loud voice terrifies your 3-year-old. You won’t have a pleasant experience, and she probably won’t be her smiling happy self! It’s SO important to have in-person or a phone consultation with a photographer before your shoot! You want to be comfortable knowing that everything is going to work out just perfect during your session! This is the time you can talk to them about what to wear, where you want the shoot, and what you plan to do with the photos!

I know…you’re still probably asking “does any of this really matter?”

                                          Two ADORABLE Princesses exploring their castle! 

                                          Two ADORABLE Princesses exploring their castle! 

OF COURSE IT MATTERS!!!! (And here’s why….)

The photos you have taken of your children, of your pets, of your whole family, are what future generations look back on to learn about you! These photos, these memories are what will visually connect the future generations to you. Your children’s children will look at these with wonder as they marvel over Grandma’s hairstyles and Grandpa’s full head of hair! These are their windows into the past…not to mention the gorgeous images you hang on your walls now!! Get them printed, small or big, it is so important!!

 

More on that next time……