There's no place like home... for a photo session
One of things I love about living in Philly is that we experience four distinct seasons. As a family photographer, I get most of my request for sessions in the spring when trees are in bloom, or in the fall when colors are at peak. Both these seasons make for beautiful backdrops. However, I find winter to be the best time of year for pictures and a client's home to be the best backdrop. The leaves have fallen, the inside of your home is brightest, and the winter light has a quality that is unmatched the rest of the year. Winter is when you spend more time together at home, where you and your kids are most relaxed and comfortable; a perfect setting for a unique family session.
Documentary photography is about capturing real life that is not embellished or beautified The everyday is not always picture-perfect, yet documentary photography is the perfect way of preserving your life as it is today, and even more so in the intimacy of your home. You can schedule your session around a routine that you want to remember, like getting ready for school, nap time, cooking breakfast on a Sunday morning... The list is endless. Or, you could leave things open-ended, and go with the flow. Both work. I'll be like a fly on the wall, observing interactions and capturing the essence of your family.
Clients can have reservations about hiring a photographer for a home session, instead of an outdoor session in a beautiful park. The main concerns usually are "my home is too small...too dark...overtaken by toys/laundry...." Well, let's see if any of this even matters.
"My home is too small..."
In Philadelphia, most homes are small. Mine is super tiny: two bedrooms and 800 square feet, two adults, two kids, one cat, countless mountains of toys and no storage rooms. Let’s just say I have a lot of experience capturing beautiful images in tight, cluttered spaces. I've taken my favorite pictures of my family at home, despite its small rooms. While I wish it was bigger, brighter, and cleaner, I love it! It's where my husband and I raise our kids, where we have so many memories. It’s where the little details that are routine today will become moments we long for once our kids have moved on to another stage of their lives.
"My home is cluttered..."
When I walk into a home that a client calls "cluttered," I look at it as a house that's lived in. It actually makes me feel better to see that other people's homes look like mine. We are all busy, with work, kids, and all that's going on in life, and keeping the house organized might not be at the top of our list. Or it is, but as you and I know, we clean it up and the tornado that is our kids undoes all our hard work within minutes. I compose pictures in such a way that the clutter that may be there will either be part of the story or won’t be visible if it doesn’t add to it.
"My home is too dark..."
Of all the concerns a client may have, light is the only one that matters. I photograph using natural light (no flash), so it's best to schedule a home session at a time of day when your house is the brightest. As long as there are a few windows that are not obstructed with big trees or a wall, I will make it work. If you have south-facing windows, you’ll get beautiful light indoors between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. And if it's too dark out, because of the weather or time of day, we can always flip a switch.
Your home is like another member of your family
I look at a home as another person to photograph, and the environment that is central to your family's identity. When I photograph your family, I not only photograph what you look like, but also who you are. That includes your home, where the heart of your family lives. The more at ease you are during a photo session, the more meaningful your pictures will be. Where is your child most comfortable? Where are you most likely to let down your guard and completely be yourself? At home.