The Smith Family
I have so much fun when I end up having a session with friends, people who have known me for a while and decided they wanted to have photos taken. It’s only after the session when I am looking through the images that I am struck with a huge helping of gratitude and humility.
I recognize that it takes a lot for people to hire a photographer. Beyond the initial investment, you have to set aside time out of your regularly scheduled weekend to dress up a little bit and hang out with someone who wants to talk to you but will also stop mid-sentence to say things like “This light is great, can you look off in that direction?” Or, “Can you do what you just did again?!” If you’re a family, not only are you inviting someone into your home but you also have to do all that and make sure your kids are comfortable, well-fed and somewhat energetic (which can be quite the task). I get it, because we (my family) have gone through these things, too.
It can be a lot, and because of this I am so incredibly grateful when anyone asks me to have a session with them. When good friends ask me, though, I consider it a huge honor. Why? Despite all of the little nuances to hiring a photographer, those friends are saying that documenting their life and family is important to them. They understand that time goes by way too fast and they want images to capture them as they are, right now. I don’t take that request lightly.
...Which brings me to the Smith family. Patti and Kenneth are two of our (my husband and I) best friends. We’re close enough that whenever someone asks how we know each other, we tend to stumble on our words a little bit and then launch into a five minute explanation of how Kenneth and Reece when to kindergarten together and Patti and Reece met in youth group, and then I came into the picture but wasn’t totally friends with everyone yet and then we all went to college and...you get the idea. It’s actually a pretty great story. :) We’re very blessed to have them in our lives.
Their son is turning two in a few months here and is definitely one of Bernadette’s best buddies. Like, legit best friends. She loves him and he lights up every time he sees her. It has been so fun seeing them grow together and we are so proud of Patti and Kenneth and who they are as parents.
They asked if I would be willing to come by for a session last weekend, which of course didn’t take any consideration on my part. Pretty sure my response was “YES! When can I be there?!” It was such a special session because it was literally just the three of them hanging out, doing their thing, and I got to be part of it for a little slice of time. That’s my favorite type of family session, folks.
Patti’s mom passed away in the middle of last year and it had a huge impact on our little community. She was a very strong woman and her family and friends loved her very much. As tough as it has been to watch our friends go through this, one of the coolest things since her passing is seeing the ways that she still makes herself present in the lives of each of her family members. I was hoping to capture some of that during the session and turns out I didn’t have to do much, it’s like she knew how to be present without being overwhelming. You can see glimpses of Jan throughout these images...on a blanket, the special pillow, and the way the sun hits Zeke’s hair.
Here are some of my favorite captures from our time together:
Thanks again for having me over, you guys. Hope you love the photos.