If I could go into the absolute most common note during or before family sessions, it’s the "I/He/She doesn't like having her photo taken." 100%. That and "can you edit that out for me?"... another discussion for another day.
I can totally understand this. I, like a lot of photographers, realize how awkward it can be to have a camera in your face. I for one don't particularly enjoy it. I force myself to get headshots done now and then, just to remind myself what it's like to have a camera pointed at you. It's uncomfortable, makes me nervous, and I try my best to do my part as a subject, but I feel loads better when it's done with. So that being said... I GET IT! I recently attended Camp Go Away (a retreat for photographers & videographers) where we were given the time, space and resources to just create. To try something we have wanted to but just haven't. So with that as my goal.. I took a self-portrait. I wanted to try something, to document myself. To show the world how I saw myself. It was scary and uncomfortable, but I LOVE this image.
But here's where my spiel comes in. Think about your family in say... 10 years. 10000% different than right now, right? Your kids are grown, won’t cuddle with you anymore, and act as though you are the weirdest person ever. I know looking back at my childhood photos, I wish there were more. We are in a time where photos are everywhere. Easy to take, easy to share and easy to forget. Why not be a little more intentional with the photos you do have? Hire a professional who "gets you" and understands what you want out of a photo session. Pick someone who's style you like, see photos from their website that you want of your family! This is not your time to get everyone stiffly posed and smiling. It's an opportunity to have an ARTIST show you how they see your family and your love. I use the term ARTIST boldly because I feel like it becomes lost in this field. Photographers take their work seriously, and are picky about what they share with the world... just like a painter, sculptor, dancer, actress etc. I have a unique vision that I long to share with you and your family.
When your significant other brings up hiring an ARTIST to document your family for you and your kids to enjoy for years to come, try not to think about how much you hate getting your photo taken or how "un-photogenic you are" (this is a lie by the way... EVERYONE is photogenic). Think about what these memories mean to your partner, your kids, their kids, your parents, and so on. When I meet people for a session , I don't see "paying clients"...I see dad's that are loving and devoted, mom's that rule the world, and kids that adore them both. And you are my inspiration. I want to show you how the world sees you and more specifically how your family sees you. So don't worry about your kids running crazy or if they keep sticking their tongue out. Don't stress about your "natural smile" or trying to show your "good side." Just be you. You are beautiful and loved, and deserve to have something special to remember that by.