Why documentary family photography?

My brother, Aaron, and I grew up in a small trailer house. I give this detail because, if you’ve been in one, you’ll recall that hallways, doorways, etc., are different dimensions than in a house. The hallway from our living area to the bedrooms is what I remember with fondness. It’s where I practiced the splits, and it’s the path my Dad walked to carry Aaron and I to our beds after we’d fallen asleep on the couch.

He’d carry us such that our bodies, against his, made a cross, of sorts. Our heads dangled on one side, legs on the other. As he made his way down the hallway, our heads would knock against the wood paneling and/or door jams. My uncle used to tease that we needed helmets at bedtime.

I wish I had pictures of my Dad’s trek down that hallway. We get a good laugh out of it now, thanks to the visions in our heads. I can only imagine how we’d nearly pee our pants if we saw a picture of it and my Mom’s face as it happened.

I’d also love a photo of us in the kitchen — with cream(?) carpet. That’s right…carpet in the kitchen. Who does that? Alas, no photos of that, either.

Before you start feeling sorry for me, I’ll tell you that we do have photos from my childhood. Lots of them. My favorites are the unposed, unscripted ones. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy and appreciate the studio family photos, too. I mean, they, too, capture a moment in time. Like the time my Mom dressed us in beach wear, water skis crossed behind us, life jackets dangling nearby, and our dog, Annie, lying next to us. We still get a good laugh out of those images. It’s nothing against the photographer at all; it was my Mom’s choice of props, in a studio, that make it funny. But these aren’t the photos I LOVE.

My wish for my clients is to have images that make them feel something. The Johnsens, for example, will always have these images (below) to remind them how they tackled bath time with twins.

Why documentary family photography?


My friends, the Kluses, were moving, and they wanted me to capture the last night in their house.

 Why documentary family photography?

 The Anderson family welcomed a baby girl this year; she’s adored by her older siblings. We captured a day in their life while mom, Nicole, was on maternity leave. Each morning, Nicole’s Dad walked down the street for a cup of coffee, conversation and a snuggle with baby Nadine.

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AST_6690webHaving someone (me) with you for a day is probably intimidating. But I’m fun and easy-going. I’m not there to capture you at your worst (morning, bad robe, no makeup?); rather, I document moments, routines, laughs, cuddles, homework and more.

If it helps ease your nerves, I’ll bring you a cup of coffee to start off the day. 🙂