So when Natalie and I discussed this session we had NO idea it was going to be between 30s and 40s the day of the shoot! With that being said, and since babies, puppies and cold don’t mix…our outdoor session quickly became an in home session. Not always an easy feat with extended and multi generational family sessions, but they were ABSOLUTE champs about it! And when it came down to it we all could agree that the most important part of the photos was simply having everyone (including 2 cardboard cut outs of those loved ones that couldn’t make it!) together for the photos.
All things considered I could not have asked for a better group of family to shoot! By the time we left I felt like we were all family! So again, even though its not my typical session this was SUCH a great session to shoot! Did I mention how fantastic they were? 🙂
The session actually took me on a trip down memory lane.
I can’t remember how old I was but there was one Christmas in particular that EVERYONE was going to be together on my Dad’s side of the family. This being said, everyone (or at least someone) decided it was necessary to have a group family photo. I honestly don’t remember too much about the logistics of the session but I remember the anticipation and the discussion of location and where everyone would stand and who would sit and who would stand. Who would hold the babies? Would the kids stand with their parents or all group together? I really don’t even remember if we had a photographer. More than likely it was just my dads camera on his tripod. Possibly even the one he later gave to me. (The same tripod I now use)
When I think back to that day I knew it was stressful for the adults but it was exhilarating for me as a kid! I can’t really explain why. But for years, and possibly even now, my Mema has kept that Family Photo hanging on her wall. There were others of course, many others. But none that I remember quite as much as that one. Again, for no apparent reason. And every time I do portraits, but especially multigenerational portraits or extended family portraits, I hope quietly within me that the photos I take will be as memorable and meaningful to the family before me as that portrait was to me and is to my Mema as well.
I pray each session that when the family looks back on the photos from the session they wont just see smiling faces (sometimes crying ones too) or they won’t just see the fancy background, but that what they see will actually be nothing compared to what they FEEL, what the photo makes them remember about the day, or even more than just that day. The important thing is the people, the love, the memories, the FAMILY. Sometimes, like in this case, the fancy background isn’t really fancy, but the smiles and the love… OH I wish you could have been there to feel it! The fits of giggle that erupted with almost every set of photos. (Some of which I couldn’t even capture because I was laughing too hard to hold my camera steady too!) It was such a sweet session and sweet afternoon that I know I’m doing a horrible job at even bringing it justice with these flimsy words. But hopefully, the photos below will do a little more than what I could up here.
Natalie- thank you SO much for sharing your family with us! Thank you for inviting us into your hope and entrusting us to capture three beautiful generations of smiles! It truly was such an honor to get a little glimpse into the love and care that you and your family show each other. I hope and pray that as you finish your sweet time together that these photos will not just remind you all about the moments they were taken but every sweet moment you all shared together. That even though you all may be separated by miles, that the string that ties each of your hearts together will only grow stronger and deeper for each other as time goes on. That God would help each and every one of you grow to be the best person you can be and the family He intends for you to be. I am so happy you all have each other! And I’m thrilled that we got to be part of the family for the afternoon! I truly hope it won’t be the last time we get to see you all!