The secret to beautiful lifestyle family portraits | Richmond VA Family Portrait Photographer Shortpump VA photographer

Lifestyle Family Portraits

The secret to beautiful lifestyle family portraits {Richmond VA Family Portrait Photographer Shortpump VA photographer}

Do you want to know the truth about my photography? It’s directly tied into my philosophy on life. Life isn’t perfect. People are not perfect. It’s our imperfections that make us different from everyone else, yet it’s also what makes us the same. It’s our shortcomings that push us to do better. Life would be such a bore if we all lived for perfection. Who would set the standard for perfection anyway? 

If you are looking for a photographer who aims for precise posing and smiles in every picture I’m probably not the right person for you. There are amazingly talented studio photographers who have mastered this art.  There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this style of photography it’s just not what I do. How boring would the photography world be if we were all the same?

Fall family portraits in RVA

When I’m photographing a family I do aim to get everyone in a pose, looking at the camera and smiling, but that is not my ultimate goal. If I get one great, 98% of the time I do, but it’s not the purpose of my work.  What I’m focused on is creating an environment where families feel comfortable to be themselves. I don’t want actors I want real life people with real feeling and emotions! I want parents to have fun with their kids. I want kids to have fun with me! I want families to look forward to getting their pictures taken each year, not something they dread and have to get over with.

I strive to create the most beautiful images for my families and am constantly educating myself on techniques, upgrading my equipment and refining my editing stye. This is only half of what I do as a photographer though.  I want to give my families an experience beyond beautiful images by creating a warm, safe, fun and friendly environment where everyone can feel comfortable to be themselves. I give 150% with each session, but I need families to do their part for the experience to be complete. When families hire me they are looking for a photographer to deliver more than the perfectly posed image. I can do that if they come to their session remembering to have fun with their kids and leave expectations at home! I have two rules that I discuss with kids before I start photographing and they are:

  1. Have fun
  2. When I ask - look at the camera and smile.   

These rules apply to parents as well. Everything else is fair game. I let kids be silly, I listen to their ideas and I’m not afraid to let them take a picture with my camera (with close supervision of course :) When it comes time for me to ask them to look at the camera and smile 9 times out of 10 they listen! 

The image at the top of this post pretty much sums up what I am all about! Some may consider this an outtake. You get a quick laugh then toss it aside, not worthy of hanging on the wall or being displayed on your holiday card. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions of course and I fully respect that, but I have to strongly disagree. I would hang this on my wall in a place where the everyone can see it everyday as a reminder that life is not perfect.  When things aren’t going as planned you can either ride it out crashing and burning, leaving yourself permanently scarred and disappointed, or you can let go, take the fall together, laughing and just enjoy the moment knowing that once you land, you will brush yourselves off and keep on going! 

Lifestyle family photographer in richmond va

Ok, that was a bit deep, so here’s the short and sweet version of why this images is display worthy. This is a real, genuine moment. Look at the smiles on everyone’s faces! I guarantee that toppling over with mom, dad and Kodi the dog was the highlight of their experience! A memory that would likely be forgotten over the years if they didn’t have this picture. Mom and Dad could have gotten mad that the kids knocked them over, getting them all dirty and missing what could have been the most perfectly posed picture. This reaction though would have likely ruined the rest of the experience for everyone. Instead they just went with it, creating memories and enjoying the moment. Always remember to enjoy the moments because you can never get them back. 

“Don’t wait for the perfect moment, take the moment and make it perfect”

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