Almost nine years ago I started my journey as a professional photographer. That meant I took in clients and I got paid. But in reality, I’ve been a photographer my entire life. Not in the way that most would think. I didn’t go to school and study photography or art and I never owned a really nice camera (SLR) until my uncle gave me his film one after purchasing his first digital. I have, however, always had the artistic gene or eye in me. Coming from a bloodline of artists, it just came naturally.
My senior year of high school I considered, for a very brief moment, becoming an interior designer. Like I said, it was in me. But that meant four years of college and I had had it with school. Not to mention, I didn’t know how I would pay for it. So I didn’t go. Instead, I followed an extremely attractive young man to Bible college. That lasted only a year, but the man, I still have him. 😉
Seven years later I became a first time mom. After several years of taking pictures at family reunions, of scenery and of holidays, my camera had a new calling. My sweet, precious baby girl. Mind you, I was taking pictures with an extremely inexpensive film camera. The kind I could carry in my purse. It didn’t produce the greatest quality images, but the artistic thought was there and it didn’t really matter because I was getting shots of my little princess.
Documenting my life and the lives of my friends and family was and is extremely important to me. I believe in having annual family photos taken because you never know where life will take you. I believe in taking my children’s photos annually because I know that some day (sooner than later) they will be on their own and it won’t be as easy for me to do a special “another year older” shoot. I believe in capturing the every day moments because those are the ones I will always remember.
Now, 21 years later, I have had a few different “real” cameras. Some better than others but all far better than what I had in the beginning. My craft has gotten better, as does anything with practice. I have learned that posed pictures do not speak to me nor do they allow me to use my talents in the way I feel God intended them specifically for me.
When I am shooting a family, I want to get them in their most raw and honest moments. There is nothing that makes me cringe more than when I hear a parent telling their child, “say cheeeeese!” That is a liberty I have always given my kids. I don’t think they even knew cheese was something other than dairy. Don’t get me wrong, we did our fair share of portraits. Boring, perfect, staged portraits. I much prefer it the way we do it now. Silly, crazy, loud and weird.
In order for me to love what I do, I have to do it my way. And that means saying goodbye to staged portraits and hello to real life. The good, the bad and the ugly of it all.
I will forever remember our weekend in Omaha this past Christmas because I took the time to enjoy my family and to capture them mostly when they were unaware. This also allowed them to be themselves and to have a good time without having to pose for their crazy photographer mama.
If you have an excursion planned with your family and want it documented so that you can enjoy your time without the fuss of snapping pictures with your phone, please contact me so we can discuss your next session.