In my opinion, a little bit of chaos is a good thing for a family photo session! Little kids add a certain realness to a photo shoot that you just can’t replicate with reserved adults. This is one of the reasons why I love photographing big families! I took some newborn photos for this family this past winter when their youngest arrived and they decided they’d like to do some family photos in Old Town Fort Collins now that she’s a little older.
I shared this story on my facebook page when I posted their photo preview, but I’d like to share it here too: Their sweet girl reminded me of one of the main reasons why I have such a hard time narrowing down my favorite photos from a session, and why I give my clients “all of the good ones” in digital form instead of making them choose just a few favorite photos to print.
As soon as she saw me last night, she showed me the locket she was wearing and told me that she was going to put a photo from this photoshoot in her locket. All evening, she mused over which photo she would choose. Maybe the whole family? Maybe just her parents? After I took a series of photos of her and her mama, I showed her the photos of the back of the camera and she said “Oh, go back! Farther… a little farther…that one! That’s the one I’ll put in my locket!” when I landed on a of her snuggled close with her mama.
These photos- yes, they’re for her parents who invested their time, money, and emotional sanity into this photo shoot to capture memories of their beloved family. But maybe more importantly, the photos are for her. When I’m editing family photos, especially shots like this one of one parent with one child, I’m always thinking of the kids, and how this might be one of their favorite childhood photos many years from now. A memory of safety and warmth and that feeling of being small and wrapped up in mom’s arms. I just can’t guess which photos will be her favorites, which ones will stir up happy memories when she’s someday holding her own babies in her arms. So sometimes, even though I may already be way over the number of photos I’ve promised to deliver, I’ll throw in a few more as a gift to a grown girl 30 years from now.