I did it. I hired a professional photographer to take my family's pictures. I did it for a few reasons... 1) I wanted to experience what it would be like for my customers, I wanted to be in their shoes to help me provide the best service possible. 2) We needed pictures done! 3) My friend does incredible work and so I couldn't wait for her to take our pics, + she's been a mentor and so helpful to me.
I don't have much experience with hiring a photographer, ironically. Well, actually only 1 experience. I hired a photographer several years ago when I was pregnant with my son. I found her on Craigslist, she came to my house and took my maternity pics. After my son was born she came back and took some family photos too. She was ok and at that time I was looking more for a deal than for quality. But I am so so grateful I had them done because those precious moments fly by so fast and I have the pictures to cherish that amazing time. But I do know better now... you definitely get what you pay for. Well EXCEPT when a small business owner is launching their business and offers fabulous introductory prices, ahem.
So it was time. She offered a mini-photoshoot and then the planning and anxiety began!
Well, wait, I am going to digress for a minute but it will all be relevant... bear with me. So I have to tell you I started this blog because of a friend. She is a gorgeous, smart woman, has a beautiful family and is an inspirational entrepreneur. I talked to her a few months ago and told her about my new photography business. I remembered I have never seen a family photo of theirs on Facebook, and if it's not there it doesn't exist, right? So I asked her about it and told her about my introductory special. She had confirmed that they have never taken one and confided that she always felt too fat and didn't want pictures taken of that. Now, let me tell you that this woman is not fat! At all! She works out regularly and looks amazing! Her comment hit me hard. We all have our insecurities but I felt sad that this beautiful woman didn't want pics taken of her with her family. I think the reality is that many people feel that way. I've seen it before during photoshoots and hate to admit I have definitely felt it myself. But personally, I try to push all that aside to celebrate where I'm at now. I'd be happier 50# lighter but it's my journey and what a wonderful way to honor it than to photo-document it.
TIE IN HERE... So it was time to begin planning my family's mini-photoshoot and the anxiety began! I started to think, "well, I haven't lost the weight I wanted to, maybe I should reschedule for when I lose some weight. I didn't get my nails done like I had planned". I then thought of my beautiful friend and how I should not let my silly insecurities interfere with my photoshoot, capturing my family now, as we all are. Because my babies are growing fast and I want to cherish every milestone, every phase and that includes my journey as a mother, as a woman too. I thought of how wonderful it will be when we get our pictures taken NEXT YEAR and I have lost some weight (maybe find the time to do my nails). And my babies are bigger. And we can celebrate our lives as it is then too.
Another thing I learned is the pressure of picking the outfits. Geeze! It was a great process for me to experience all of this so I can become a more thoughtful and attentive photographer to help my clients through the process of capturing their true lives. Investing in a photo-shoot is about celebrating who you are, who you love, your journey. It's about capturing a time of where we are in life. I'll remember that during our photo-shoot my son had a difficult time standing, just standing for 20 minutes, and my baby girl didn't want to smile! At all! It's life. They're kids. Maybe someday my girl will become the camera "ham" & we can't get her to STOP smiling for the camera, and my boy will not complain every 10 seconds of his "legs hurting" and we'll look back at those pics and see how much we've all grown from that time in our life.
So where's a little recap of what I learned from hiring a family photographer:
1) Don't arrive late, especially to a mini-shoot because time is limited! (it's a cultural thing for me, and I'm sticking to that story!)
2) Read all correspondents from photographer because there may be pertinent information about locations or forms of payment received. (oops)
3) Check out some Pinterest boards for outfit ideas (I'm building TLC's Pinterest page now!)
4) Most importantly, enjoy the experience and let the professional lead the way.
5) Oh and be patient AFTER the photo-shoot because it takes time for the photographer to sort through and edit the images (i'm still working on that!)
Here's 1 of the pics from our photo-shoot. I'm trying to patiently wait for the others but it usually takes a photographer 2-3 weeks to deliver the goods and it's only been a week, so i'll enjoy this one and share it with you.
Thanks for taking the time to stop by!