'JUST' a parent photographer????
This one is a little bit special to me. You see, I have a lot of feelings about what I do – as a Mum, as a photographer, as an educator. A blog by a wonderful Australian photographer on the importance of photographing your home which I read recently, resonated with me deeply and I felt like I needed to add my 2 pence worth.
People are sometimes dismissive of ‘mums with cameras’, however professional you may be or however many awards you may have picked up. It’s simply because the subject matter feels like it’s not ‘serious’ enough. Like the emotion which drives your shutter finger is something less worthy than capturing the perfect landscape. But what we do, what we capture, those snippets of ours and our children’s lives matter.
I was reminded recently, why it matters, by my daughter. You see, as a proper functioning adult, I sometimes find myself go through my days as if it were a series of tasks. When I wake up, I think of the things I need to do and facilitate – both for me and my family. I see my house as that place that needs to be hoovered, where the kids yet again made a mess ‘eating’ breakfast, where I probably should replace that table stained by the kids art ‘projects’ and that threadbare sofa.
But then, I got chatting with my 8 year old about her ‘Family’ themed school project, and for a moment, I got to see my world the way she did. For her, our days together are not a series of tasks, they’re a series of experiences, learning moments, cuddle moments, laughter moments. The ‘Mum taxi” ride we take together to one of her clubs is the time she gets to have me to herself, for a little laugh and ‘big’ conversations time. Messing about at the breakfast table with her baby sister (who’s sat next to her so she’s out of my way as I run around the house getting stuff ready) a great bonding sisterly moment. The table I want to replace – turns out she loves tracing the outline of the arty stains and can tell me exactly what stain came from which project. And that worn out sofa I want to get rid of – turn out it’s the very definition of cuddles and comfort.
Why am I even mentioning this? It’s because those are the moments that – as a parent – I want to freeze in time, remember forever, never lose sight of. And those are the moments that as a family photographer – I want to capture as beautifully and as faithfully as I can. They matter. There is no outside photographer who can come to your house and capture them – with all the talent in the world, if they’re not living with you, they just won’t know the key moments and the key places. This is something YOU yourself must capture.
And it reminded me that what we do here, at Photography for Parents – matters. The kind of photography we do and we teach - lifestyle photography – no posing, no forced smiles, the here and now – that’s life. Because it matters, those little moments matter. We’re here to give you the toolkit to help you execute your vision in the way it does justice to your family – the tech skills, camera skills, composition skills – but recognising those family moments, that’s something ONLY you can do.
Think of the pleasure you get from flicking through your childhood photos. Recognising yourself in familiar places which may no longer exist. Traveling back through time to emotions you felt at the time. Reminiscing about relationships with family members who may no longer be with you. How awesome to be able to give the same gift to your children?
We’ve been around for over 10 years and had a few thousands students go through our courses now. If for every one of them, learning those skills meant that those little but key family moments got captured – that makes me happy. That means, it mattered.
We’ve re just about to open enrolment for our Autumn term online classes – our Fundamentals of Children’s Photography ( Level 1) will be starting on Monday, 13th September.
That is the toolkit I was talking about – we take you step by step through the camera know how, the composition, the light, the storytelling – it’s all there. Our courses usually sell out fast and we always offer spaces first to those on our waiting list ( with a hefty discount no less) so if you want to start the next school year right, CLICK HERE and put your name down
Make a change. Start documenting your family life like a pro.