Sunday, October 18, 2015

A Quiet Knowing

Sometimes I show up for a photo shoot and it ends up going completely different than I originally envisioned. All those Pinterest poses I have pinned in my head never reveal themselves. There are families that love traditional photos with formal poses and props and this is often where I start as I feel people are looking to me for some sort of direction on where to be. This is so tricky as a photographer because if you do not know the family, you are making first impression assumptions on their relationships with one another. For example, is a husband comfortable giving his wife a kiss or tossing his child in the air? Or is he not an affectionate and playful type, preferring a less engaged pose. I consider myself to be a fairly good judge of character and I try and read the family dynamics as quickly and as accurately as I can, but there are times that I am off. However after a few posed shots, the candids start to creep in and that is when I find my camera guiding me. As families start to feel a little more comfortable with me, they begin to reveal their natural rhythm guiding me to poses that speak to their story.

I recently photographed a family with a two month old. I rarely agree to this age as it is not an easy age to photograph and takes a certain patience and skill level that I feel are not my strongest assets.  After a few cute posey outdoor shots, a feeding and diaper change led us inside. The fear of indoor light often trumps my attempt to become creative, however I happened to have my external flash on me and I decided to take a chance. The sunlight filtering through the bedroom window was perfect as this sweet baby girl was changed and fed, and I found myself capturing quiet, every day moments. These are the moments that posed photos do not speak to.

As I photographed this mama rocking her baby, I remember the hours I spent in that same spot. The feeling on her face, was my own. My camera came alive as though its job was to connect my soul to hers, a quiet knowing. I had to trust that light or no light, my camera would capture that honesty. I have few photographs that show those quiet times, those late night feedings when it was just me, my baby and the night.  Or when Brian and I would just lay in our bed and look at this little person we created, like he was some sort of magical creature that somehow we were lucky enough to be granted permission to raise. I felt grateful that this family allowed me into their intimacy, their quiet moments. Sometimes the purpose of posed photos work solely to create an ice breaker, leading to a comfort of allowing a more intimate connection between a person and my lens. 

Love & Light,

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