You have lots of "smile and pose (or mug) for the camera" photos of family and maybe a few selfies, but you want to remember more about your next family gathering. You want to create time traveling images that will help you remember how it felt. Here are a few tips to make your photographs of the family events and traditions memorable and tell an authentic story. đź“·Hold your phone or camera horizontally. Why? This is how we naturally see, and when we see a horizontal photograph, it feels more real.  đź“·Don't ask people to smile or pose. Let your family know that you are going to be taking candids and they can relax. đź“·Pick a subject and a story. By subject I mean a person--or two--or an action. This may seem obvious, but the more intent you have in the images you make, the more powerful they are for the viewer and the more memories you'll inspire. đź“·Anticipate moments. The kids have been playing tag or tossing the football while dinner cooks. ...
What makes a photograph significant? Some describe a photograph as a moment, frozen in time. I prefer to think of photographs as pathways. Dynamic and fluid. Connecting past and present, emotion and memory, in a new way with each journey. When I was a child I loved to look at my baby album again and again. I remember the crinkly sound of the plastic as I turned the pages, the pictures bathed in a warm glow. Over the years, I'd pull it out, and the meaning of the images would change even as they stayed the same. Including that photo of my parents in 70's clothing just before I was born, which became hilarious to me as a teenager in the 80's, but now feels retro-cool. Our family photographs were mostly in slide form, and we would often have a slideshow. I loved the ritual of pulling out the weirdly textured roll screen, filling the carousels and setting up the projector. Images as far back as before I was born and my parents were married, when my Dad ...
It's easy to take a million cute and candid photographs of your baby, your toddler, and your young child. As kids get older, we often take less. Our images can become limited to sports, events, or the occasional vacation photo or selfie. And tweens and teens have opinions about these things. Taking regular photos of our everyday can inspire eye-rolls or insistence on creative control. As someone with one child poised to go to college the year after next, and another entering high school, I can tell you how much I want to enjoy and remember our everyday life right now, before it really changes. And as the Mom, I'd like a few photos of myself with the family as well. Do you feel like you have enough photos of and with your teens? What would you do in an natural, unposed family documentary session with teens?  Your family might be past the age of wild hijinks like running through the sprinkler and playing tag and close cuddly moments like snuggling together to read on the ...
I remember standing in line on picture day in school, comb in hand, trying to keep my long hair looking reasonably neat until those few seconds where I'd try my best to look presentable and smile at the camera (it helped if the photographer was funny). And then be herded off so the next student could do the same. This was THE professional picture that many families would have for the year, and it was taken very seriously. We'd wait anxiously to receive our photos in a paper envelope with a crinkly plastic window and see how they looked. Sometimes they'd turn out ok, and then there were the times when we had an awkward half-smile or a weird in-between expression. Our parents would send 8x10's to the grandparents and 3 1/2 x5's to the aunts and uncles, and our Dads would keep "wallets" in their wallets. It would have been so cool to have photos of me flipping backwards off the monkey bars (over pavement, because it was the 70s) while another student ...
Play is often talked about as if it were relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood" ~Fred Rogers  Next to love, I believe that play is the most important part of childhood. And it's good for adults too! As a parent, Music Together teacher, and documentary/lifestyle family photographer, play is at the heart of what I do and seek to inspire. Play is at the heart of our childhood memories.   I remember that wonderful feeling of being immersed in my own imaginative world, free to play for hours, build couch forts, sail sticks down streams, make up games with my brother and friends, pore over books, or just sit and think. Rediscovering play has been one of the best parts of being a parent. My children and I have played countless made up games together--the silly worm (he kept falling off the couch), blue whale in the bathtub (he kept getting wet and getting upset about it), rescuin...
It is a happy talent to know how to play. Ralph Waldo Emerson As a parent, Music Together teacher, and documentary/lifestyle family photographer, I truly believe in (and understand the science behind) the importance of play . What is play? Play is freely chosen, self-motivated, and experimental. It takes place in an environment where there are no restrictions on how to act, think, or do, and where exploration, discovery, and practice are possible without fear of consequences. Most of all, play is fun . And fun is learning . Well documented in scientific research, play is essential to intellectual and emotional development.  When we make time and space for play in our children's lives we are nurturing and cultivating their potential. We are helping them become who they are meant to be.   What play looks like in Music Together...from a Music Together Vivo! Park Playalong Here are my tips for creating a play space and guiding play in your home: ...