I’m going to tell you a secret.
And my secret is that I know YOUR secret. How, you ask?
Well, I read these exact words on Facebook recently + now I know. “Ugh, I have such a love/hate relationship with Photo Session DAY!”
Granted the person who had written it hasn’t used me as her photographer, so not gonna lie – I felt instant relief. But then I realized, ‘Kristen, this may be the reality of the families that you photograph too…”
My inner dialog protested: “But I really don’t think my clients would feel this way…Kids say all the time it’s the best day ever… And we laugh lots. People leave seeming so happy…so there’s no way they have a love/hate relationship with KC Photograph Co. Sessions…JUST LOVE…Just love, right?…Wait, right?”
Yeah, dream on, self.
On a photo session day, from my perspective, you guys roll up looking adorable, with your hair + make-up looking spot on. Basically, you look like a million bucks.
Your kids look immaculate; dressed in stylized, coordinated outfits. They’re models.
We’re at a gorgeous location. The sun is shining. There’s anticipation. We all hug each other. I’m surprised I’ve never seen a unicorn casually stroll by, it can feel that happy + perfect to me.
And I know the following:
I know you’re at least a little bit happy. I know you’ve planned for this day. I know you’re probably proud of yourself for FINALLY scheduling a photo shoot for your family because they are your rock stars + favorite people on the planet. (You’re probably feeling a little like super mom, as you should.) I know that this day is a freakin BIG DEAL to you. And it is to me, too.
But I DON’T know the following:
I don’t know how your morning, or even week has been like prior to this moment. I don’t know what happened in the car on the way, what temper tantrums were had, what sarcastic, biting remarks you + your spouse potentially had. I don’t know that your loved ones are in pain. I don’t know you’re terrified about a health issue that has recently come up. I don’t know that you’re feeling insecure about yourself these days.
Once a woman told me mid-shoot,”My sister-in-law wasn’t up to making it today…she’s had a rough few days with chemo. But the rest of us are here!”
I would have never known…
There can be a lot of pressure to “GET IT RIGHT” on the day of a photo session. Choosing outfits, making sure everyone is well rested + fed, maintaining harmony within the family (at least until we’re done taking pictures, let’s be real), bringing the right snacks for the kids, having not overdone your makeup while having made that rebellious zit as inconspicuous as possible…you may feel as though you have one chance to appear well, perfect.
Can I just tell you something real quick? Cool. Here it goes: YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT. In fact, if you are, it’ll probably weird me out.
How about this? You just be you. Because you’re wonderful as you are.
Family photo sessions aren’t about getting your crap together + looking like you’ve got things more in place than whoever will see these photographs. They are about pausing in the midst of all that life is and saying:
“Honestly? Honestly, we’ve got highs + lows right now. We’ve got things to celebrate + things that are breaking our hearts.
But mostly, we have each other.”
Your kids may not be on their best behavior during a photo sessions. Truthfully, they very well may not be. But guess what; I can handle it! (I can go get coffee after the shoot, it’s really ok.) They may scream (it’s happened). They may be rude. (It’s happened.) You may be feeling exhausted. (I know that’s happened, too.) But we’re in this together. I will do my best to make you laugh + not take everything so seriously. I hope you see me as an old friend that you can be yourselves around. I know your lives aren’t perfect. Mine isn’t or will ever be, either.
And since we’re being honest here, I have definitely shown up to photo shoots after an awful night sleep, after hearing bad news + in the midst of frustrations or disappointments. We’re HUMAN. We’re all human. You + me. We don’t have to be perfect. And, we’re in this together.
So please, take the pressure off of yourselves. Please don’t have a love/hate relationship with Photo Session Day. Just embrace it. You’re amazing, just as you are.
Wanna book your ‘wonderful just-as-you-are’ Spring Session today?? Email here: firstname.lastname@example.org