Everyone's got something. The thing or things that send shockwaves of joy deep into their souls.
"Video Killed the Radio Star" is Oscar's favorite song. If someone plays it, he'll drop whatever he's doing to rock out. He gets crazy excited about it, dances his tiny little heart out...finds a "microphone" and sings along. He lights up. From the inside out. For Winter, it's Chinese buffets. Talk to her about fried rice and a selection of miniature pieces of cake and she will start to glow. For Maddie, just the mention of Harry Potter will spark a small pop trivia quiz. Even little baby Titus begins to shine the moment he sees/hears/smells mom. Everyone's got something. The thing or things that send shockwaves of joy deep into their souls. And through the consultations, the conversations, the questions and the intuitions... I count myself lucky if I can unearth this vital piece of info about my subject(s).
I take photographs to capture real life moments, in all of their true-to-life beauty... to hold them up to you, to me, to the world and to say "See this. See, I told you, it is so beautiful. It's already perfect. Life is good."
I take photographs to capture real life moments, in all of their true-to-life beauty... to hold them up to you, to me, to the world and to say "See this. See, I told you, it is so beautiful. It's already perfect. Life is good." I create images to show others how I see the world, so perfectly imperfect; to share my deep love for the opportunity we all have to try out this whole *human* thing for awhile. I don't know about you, but I don't want to look at photos of my kids and see them perfectly posed on a dock on a lake they'll likely never go to again, in perfectly pressed, coordinated clothing with matching bows in their hair. Sure, that would serve as a representation of what they looked like in this moment, but it would tell me little to nothing about who they are. Instead, I want to see his face when he first realizes his song is playing, or her explosive grin when talking about tiny chocolate cake and an ice cream bar. I want images that connect me to the stuff they're made of now, because that is ever shifting and what brings them joy today could change any given tomorrow and I don't want to forget any of it.
What makes everyone light up as individuals? and What shared activities bring you joy as a family?
What I want to know before a session, (what I think most portrait photographers want to know before a session), what helps to get those images that tug at your heart long after your children are grown and your home falls quiet is: What makes everyone light up as individuals? and What shared activities bring you joy as a family? This information provides me with insight that I then use to personalize your shoot and capture genuine moments/expressions. After you receive your new client questionnaire, I suggest you read over the questions, think about them long enough to begin formulating your responses, and then let it go and come back to it in a day or so. I urge you to not rush through it, instead, set aside some quiet time to really reflect on what's being asked and explore your feelings and responses. Don't overanalyze or try too hard; it's not a pop quiz. There are no right or wrong answers. Think of it as a block of time to meditate on what makes your family unique, on the things you love dearly about them that you would like to preserve. Your images will be better for it.