Remember when I said our family picture time was frustrating, cold and difficult? I bet you didn’t believe me when you saw those pictures of my sweet, smiling family. Well, I wasn’t tricking. One of the best and worst things … Continue reading
My little guy is so much fun to photograph. I think that’s because he still likes to ham it up for me. He was cold, but had such a great attitude. And he knew that right after we finished we … Continue reading
Payton reminds me so much of his dad that it’s astounding. Especially in the way they smile for pictures. You see, for these guys there are two smiles. The one you show when you are laughing and happy and carefree…and … Continue reading
I know when I insist on taking our own family pictures I am playing with fire. It is destined to not go well. This year was no exception. It was cold. Very cold. Hurt your fingers and make your nose … Continue reading
After taking pics of Ellie, Payton, Shiloh and then the three of them together, we needed to eat, play and sleep. We had smiled enough. So the next morning, as we watched the beautiful sunrise over the hill we got ready for some more pictures in the morning sun. Sunday morning brought more sun, less clouds and some pretty cold temperatures. But it was a beautiful day. A clear and crisp northwest autumn morning.
Now, most people get others to take pictures of their family. I am too frugal for that. So I set up the tripod, set up my family and set the timer. Then I run into the shot, try to position myself to look normal and have good hair and catch my breath – all in ten seconds. What makes it difficult is that most of the time my hair is wild from running, I’m sweating in the sun and I am in a weird or awkward position (which I don’t know at the time because I don’t see myself in the viewfinder when I position everyone else). I think I frustrate myself more than anyone else does when we take family pictures. I just want to scream at myself, “Take a good picture!!!!” But I try to have patience, do retakes quickly and fix things with Photoshop. It’s also hard to get everyone looking at the camera when I’m running towards them, giving them last minute directions and when there is no one at the camera calling for their attention. So, these would probably be better if taken by someone else, but it’s what I can afford.
This weekend was fun, crazy, restful, and wonderful. We had meltdowns. We had frustrating moments. But we were together. And we are always our best when we are together. I feel rejuvenated when we go away together, just the five of us. It’s as if we are a team and we seem to have more grace, more patience and more understanding when we are experiencing life that way. These faces, these hands and feet and messy heads of hair, they are my greatest blessings. My reasons to be thankful. My grace received. My eucharisteo.
If you are just joining us, we’re taking a look at my weekend photo shoot. Of my own family. And if you know anything about capturing images of your own family, it is not easy. Sometimes it’s downright torturous.
After I took pics of all my kids individually and just as I was on the verge of losing my light I gathered them together for “Oh how I just love my siblings” pictures. Shiloh had gotten a long turn on his very special rope swing so he was much happier than before, although he was still a bit of a pill. Oh, two year olds!! He was a bit apprehensive at first because I placed them in great light…right on top of barbed wire that was hidden under the fallen leaves. After that he was worried that everywhere I told him to move was going to make him get stuck in the barbed wire. Maybe I should have scouted better. But in the end they were great and their personalities really started to shine through.
Those last pictures are my favorite. The one of the boys kissing Ellie’s cheeks…with Shiloh’s fish face kiss where he sucks his cheeks in…LOVE! You can tell she loves it too. And the last two where they are holding hands – it gives me the “We’re-gonna-stick-together-through-anything-it’s-us-against-the-world-and-I’m-here-for-you” feeling of a childrens book where the siblings go on amazing adventures together. Maybe someday they will.
So, I spend hours yesterday doing what I never thought I would do. Taking pictures of myself. I am in photography school and I have an assignment to take portraits using different lighting techniques. Since I have no one here to photograph (and it specifically needed to be an adult because another assignment deals with photographing children) I had to use myself.
What I didn’t realize is that it is extremely difficult to photograph a subject you can not focus on. I had to focus manually, set the self-timer, run into what I thought was position, wait for the beeps, tilt my head, hear the click, run back and look at the finished product and then adjust for all the mistakes. I must have taken hundreds of pictures of myself in the two hours Payton was napping. And I’m going out on a limb here and posting them so I can get feedback. I need to turn in one image with ambient window lighting and one with umbrella strobe lighting.
So, now I need your feedback. Which portraits do you prefer? Which is most flattering, has better lighting, looks more professional, has less flaws, is more properly aligned? Which is the one you would choose if you were my professor and why?
I had some big revelations last night, but I’ll have to save those for later. Payton just woke up and wants to play a Sesame Street game.
So, I’m not sure why I created this blog. A part of me wants to say it’s to keep in touch with long lost and far away friends. But, while I miss you all, I don’t think that’s it. Another … Continue reading