What is Documentary Family Photography?
Documentary family photography uses the principals of photojournalism to document your family life. Following these principals, I do not direct or pose my clients during a session. I don’t move furniture or adjust the lighting in anyway. I strive to be unobtrusive and respectful in your home. When it comes to editing your photos. I stay true to reality and keep post-production to a minimum. I want your photos to look like real life, just a little bit better!
Because nothing is better than real life!
What does a Real Life session look like?
I will come to your home and take the first few minutes to photograph details in your home. Your kids may even be excited to show me some of their personal favourite things in the house for me to photograph. It’s a great time to break the ice!
At some point in the session, when the timing and lighting is right I’ll suggest a quick family portrait. Even though this isn’t in true form of documentary photography, I just can’t leave your home without snapping some portraits. And so we’ll gather, and pose, and smile!
The rest of the session will depend on what you’d like to do. Playtime, changing diapers, nursing/feeding and naptime snuggles, lego construction, a game of UNO. Plan to do activities that include everyone in the family, things that are true to your family at this time in your lives.
…. I’ll tag along, snapping away!
Why take photos at home?
I love shooting in your homes. Everyone is relaxed and comfortable, the kids are happy to settle into their routines, read a book and play with their toys. They’ll forget I’m there in no time, and that’s when the magic happens. Real Life sessions are a way to take a snap shot of your everyday life, I encourage you to take the dog for a walk, make pancakes, have bath time. I’m happy to document it all for you!
How do we prepare our home?
I understand. Maybe you’re thinking about all the cleaning you’ll need to do for this photo session. You might be concerned about the amount of natural light available in your home. Inviting a photographer into your home can feel a bit scary. My advice is this. Don’t do a thing! My home is not always (if ever) neat and tidy, so I definitely won’t be judging you. Also, we want to capture your life as it is. It’s totally ok that you have a pile of toys in your living room. I’m going to take some photos of it, because it wont be there forever, and in ten years you and your kids will look at these photos and remember all those toys, the macaroni necklace cracking under your feet and laugh! If the thought of doing nothing makes you even more nervous, I encourage you to focus your tidying efforts to one or two main locations, perhaps a room where you and your kids spend most of your time together. But remember if you are stressed, your kids will (pronbably) act up, so relax and enjoy the time together!
What time of day is best for a Real Life session?
That all depends on what you would like for your photos.
What part of day is your favourite time with the family? Is there something that your family loves doing together? Maybe your kids are going through a funny phase and are hilarious at 5:30 in the morning in their pjs. I’d actually be very excited to see what your kids are doing at 5:30 am!
Maybe you even want to capture the dinnertime meltdown! That could be exciting! Tears, meltdowns, and laughter are a part of the family, don’t I know it!
Just a heads up: I won’t shy away from snapping photos at emotional times, but please let me know if you would like some privacy during a session.
Please don’t worry about the best light, I have fancy cameras that works in low light – I use them to take pictures of my own family in our very dim house!
What do we do while you’re here?
I strongly recommend that you follow your family’s natural daily rhythm. I know that kids thrive in routine, and my presence alone might be enough for them to adjust to. Below are some suggestions as to what you can plan for our time together.
- Plan for activities that the kids are comfortable with
- Plan an activity that the whole family can do together
- Highlight your kids’/families current interests (let’s document what they’re into)
- If you really want to capture a certain acitvity (say bathtime) we can schedule the session accordingly
You want to stay how long!!??
Real Life sessions start at 4 hours. I would stay all day if you'd have me! This may seem daunting, but hear me out. My mission is to capture your natural family life. Kids (and parents) can stay pretty well behaved, putting on a bit of a show for a guest in the home for a couple of hours. But after some time, kids start to break, parents need to parent. Everyone is used to me in your space, relaxing more and more, as I become a natural part of your family’s day. The more you and your family relax and feel like yourselves, the better I can do my job at capturing you candidly.
If you are willing to have me stay past your comfort zone, I can get photos that will truly capture your family’s nitty gritty personality.