Today we live in the world of Pinterest. Great recipes we can’t wait to try, DIY projects that can turn junk into gems, kids activities and party ideas that are creative and amazing and lots and lots of awesome photographs of everything you can imagine. I myself love Pinterest and I am one of those crazy people that actually tries many of the recipes they pin and get party and school ideas from there as well. It was also very helpful in building the house as I could pin styles I liked as well as specific lighting fixtures, paint colors and decorating ideas. But, as a photographer, I have a whole other opinion of Pinterest.
I love when my clients have great ideas for pictures and moments they would like me to to capture. I get excited over cool new prop finds cool props finds as well as other fun things that make the session pop. But, in this ever changing society, sometimes it can be discouraging to get an email full of Pinterest pictures from various photographers and sessions and (and sometimes all my own prior sessions) with the hope that we can replicate these pictures in their own session. Why does this make me sad? Well, the problem is that with this expectation, the client will always be disappointed, no matter how great the pictures are. Why? Because it is impossible to replicate a picture. Your child/self will never look just like that subject nor will they have the same clothes, location, backdrop, props, editing, etc. Just the natural light alone can vary so much from one day to the next based on cloud cover, season and time of day. Even the best session ever with all the same props and backdrops is still never going to be the same as the original. Plus, we have already seen that same picture before so some of the excitement just isn’t there. And, I remember once spending a good 10 minutes at a wedding trying to replicate a specific picture and it just wasn’t happening (it is actually a pretty funny story if you ever want to ask me in person) and then my second shooter moved on to try herself for another 10 minutes while I had moved on. Imagine the amazing pictures we could have used that 20 minutes for? So, I have decided to think of Pinterest as an inspiration in life but one to use only for slight guidance with a twist of yourself to make things truly an original.
In the case of this family, we chatted many times about doing a lifestyle session to capture who they are and what their life is like right now…at this special and fleeting moment in their lives. Their mom wanted pictures of the family just being themselves and enjoying each other and that made my heart sing. She also wanted to include nursing pictures (which turned out amazing and those pictures will stay private) which means a lot to this mom of two. But, before we decided what and where to shoot around their home, I did a little research and showed them some images of other nursing/lifestyle pictures to get an idea of what I was envisioning and to see this family wanted a similar style. Mom loved the ideas so we set out to capture something wonderful. But, once we started, the clouds shifted and all of the key pictures we had looked at were taken in the bedroom and by this time it was simply too dark dark. So, I took that concept and then used my client’s amazing house and we found where the natural light was streaming in to get the look I knew we all wanted. The result? Pictures I love and even more important is that my client loves them. After viewing the gallery a few times, she texted me that she wanted to wallpaper her house in them. I love that. Of course, her awesome decor, super cute family and killer natural light (plus a little studio light help from me) resulted in something special, one of a kind and completely unique.
Thanks to this amazing family for letting me capture your family at this special time