Are you ready? Because this “secret” is hardly a secret to anyone who has had a child/family photo session. Or to any photographer.
The secret is that they almost never go as quickly or as smoothly as you hope they will. Almost every session there’s a snag. Maybe the kids are fussy or tired. Maybe they’re being silly. Maybe they’re just a little rambunctious and excited. No matter what the reason, the end result is that they’re typically not doing what you want them to – sitting still and smiling at the camera!
As the session progresses, and despite my reassurances, I can see Mom and Dad getting a little frazzled. A little frustrated. And inevitably someone says, “You must have the patience of a saint.”
So I’ll let you in on another secret:
With other people’s kids. You see, I can completely empathize with Mom and Dad. Because I have two uncooperative children of my own. And I assure you, when you think that your children must be the most difficult kids I’ve ever photographed, I can honestly tell you that they’re not. Because mine already have that title sewn up and in the bag.
Every year I’m painfully reminded of just how hard it is to be the parent and try to bribe, cajole, trick and threaten your child into compliance when I attempt our own holiday photos. And every year I end up frazzled, frustrated, exhausted, dejected, discouraged and ready to sell my children to the first band of traveling gypsies that happen to cross our path.
I’m kidding about that last part of course.
I wouldn’t do that to the gypsies.
We’re making attempt number three at our family photo session tomorrow if the weather cooperates. Yes, I said THREE attempts to get holiday pictures of our family. To explain why three sessions are necessary, I’ll simply offer up to you Exhibit A from Attempt #2 :
Yup, that would make my husband and I the only ones looking at the camera. Dylan is apparently quite taken with the grass. And Logan is fussing and mashing his head into my face. Fun times.
But you know what? It’s my family. And it’s pretty true to life. And it makes me smile. So maybe it’s not a complete failure…