My daughter is in the midst of that part of toddlerhood where the determination for independence constantly clashes with fine motor skills...always slightly behind where her mind wants to take her. The frustration is more than palpable, but it's sweet to watch her put feet through shirt sleeves and polka dots over florals in a series of slouchy layers. I offer my help but it's constantly rebuffed and taken with offense - a resounding "NO" with a chubby hand flung in my face. We are both learning lessons here. It's okay to let her struggle sometimes, fail, and keep trying until she gets it right. And shirts can't be put on through your pants.
Being able to remember this stuff is why I love being a storytelling photographer. Documenting a little slice of life, reminding us that in the rush onward towards greater aspirations, our lives were pretty damn good all the while. I say this now as much of a reminder to myself than to anyone else.
So what exactly is storytelling photography and how is it different from traditional portraiture?
It's all about telling an authentic story in a beautiful, natural way. A series of images that depict a typical day in the life of your family. No matching outfits, no rearranging your entire house until you barely recognize it, and no finding the most beautiful place in your town that you would otherwise never go to. It's about doing what your family actually loves to do - it could be as fun as going to Playalinda Beach or as simple as the interaction between you and your local Publix deli worker creating your family the most amazing sub.
[I'm totally joking on that last one. Although, getting a Publix sub is something my family truly loves to do. But I feel like an Instagram picture of that might suffice, so bust out your phones and tag me on that one.]
Making pancakes on a Sunday morning. Going camping at Blue Spring (um hello, yes). A trip to Orlando to walk around Lake Eola. All of these things make great stories.
Even laundry fights on the bed. :)
PS - There are a lot of amazingly talented photographers out there who are perfect for a more formal family photo - and I would be happy to refer you to them if you realize the storytelling route is not for you!