I’ll regularly take pictures when I visit family or they visit us with my phone and I’ll send those to whoever, no problem. But when I take pictures with my camera, I want to edit them. I’m gonna colour correct, edit out undesirable little bits, crop it possibly, I’m gonna do shit to it before I want anyone to see it. But inevitably there’s always someone who asks to be sent the pictures and it’s always the same convo.
Way back in January, before Covid-19 was part of our lives, (remember that? It was before we knew that furlough was a real word, before we knew what WFH stood for, and before we put anti-bac on everything), I wrote a little blog about what it’s actually like to be a photographer. If you haven’t read it, you can find it here. Lockdown has given me a fair bit of time to think (but surprisingly little time to do – has anyone else found that?!) and following on from that blog, I’ve realised a few things about what takes a family photographer to the next level. They’re things I try and practice myself, or things I admire about photographers that are way further down the road than I am.
A few weeks ago, I was in town and I heard a lady say to her friend “That photo you posted of Sebastian was soooooo beautiful. While you’re on maternity leave, you should totally start doing photography as a business…”. Before I write anything else, I just want to say that this is exactly the kind of thing that my friends would tell me a few years back. And it’s lovely when your friends encourage you to pursue your passion and turn it into a business. But in my experience, starting any kind of business isn’t something that you should decide to do on a whim!
Being a professional photographer certainly requires some skills beyond photography. But this Craigslist ad for a family photographer certainly adds another layer to it. Other than photographing for social media, editing photos and probably posting them too, this family also looks for someone to be a “Mother’s Helper.”
My family and I recently returned from a week-long early spring backcountry camping trip.
This trip involved canoeing in snow squalls and an extended portage where the lake was still frozen solid. Physically, it was a challenge, but it was also an amazing family bonding experience with my wife and our 9 and 12-year-old kids (the golden years when they are useful humans but not yet teenagers).
At the end of the trip I sat my trusty old Fuji X100 (the original model) on a post in the parking lot to snap one final family portrait in self-timer mode.
Then we drove home…
This past summer I was camping with my family and one of the lakes we visited had a perfect jumping rock.
I knew this would be a great photo opportunity, so I brought my camera to snap a few photos of us jumping off of the rock and into the lake.
What I ended up capturing was a perfect lesson on why you need to look for atmosphere and light to improve your outdoor photography.
I’m going to break with tradition a bit, for I usually am not one to talk about celebrities that I keep in touch with from photoshoots. Some of this comes out of professional courtesy, and another part of it is that I am a bit of a private person However, a current project and fun day in the studio has made for some new images and behind the scenes video that I think you will all enjoy. So with that, allow me to talk about the shenanigans that take place when I share the studio with my photographer friend (that plays football), Larry Fitzgerald.
Bonds between siblings can be really special. Brothers and sisters can fight over silly things, but at the same time, they’ll do anything for each other. A teenager named Anthony Angel wanted to do something wonderful for his little sister Anabel’s birthday. He wanted to throw her a special surprise, so he arranged a Disney-themed photo shoot for her. And since their mom Christina Angel is a photographer, she gladly took the responsibility to capture the moments of deep love and bond between brother and sister.
This past weekend I had the extreme pleasure* of attending my daughter’s second (she and I agree last) dance recital.
In what can only be described as a three and a half hour long gong show featuring 56 acts – non stop – it was still an important accomplishment for her, so of course it was up to me to at least snap a few obligatory family photos.
It turned into to interesting lesson on natural light photography and photographing kids that I thought I’d share.
Russian Photographer and mom Elena Shumilova became kinda famous when photos of her kids and family went viral in early 2014. In total her photos were views over 60,000,000 times (and I guess they were viewed outside her profile some 60 million more).
Something about her photography struck a chord with almost everyone, photographers, mothers, father, young and old. I guess the innocence and feeling of childhood that projected from her photos were just irresistible.
Elena shared some great advice on photographing kids with the crew at Smugmug and agreed to share them with DIYP readers.