Don't Forget To Capture The Little Things | Michigan Documentary Photographer
I have always spent most of my time photographing others that all of the family photos we have, or even ones of my son, are predominantly taken with my phone. –Bummer, I know. It really is hard to print and frame a decent phone picture without it looking like complete crap. (Sorry, I couldn’t think of any other way to put it).
I could just grab my family and force them to pose for pictures in front of my camera placed on a tripod and use a remote shutter, but I don’t feel that would be genuine. I like genuine, actually I love genuine and to me that just isn’t what it is. Sure, I would love a family portrait of us all looking and smiling, but then I realize that that isn’t what our life is about at all.
It’s about those little in between the smile moments.
As much as I like to think my life is picture perfect, it’s really not. We deal with toddler meltdowns, a chaos of a house, and food surprises in every nook and cranny imaginable. It’s life –I wouldn’t want it any other way, but then why don’t we photograph those moments?
I have always considered myself to be focused on the little details, and to not overlook those in my client’s sessions, so why do I forget when it comes to my own life moments. Maybe it’s my busy schedule, or because I don’t have my camera at that moment in time, or possibly it’s just mom brain. (I use that excuse more than I should probably admit though). Either way, it was time for a change.
I decided to take a few days and to follow my son around and document our life, and appreciate the little things that might normally annoy me on a daily basis. The messes, the constant defiance of the word “no,” the little smart-a** grins because he knows he’s in trouble, and the moments that make me just remember why I love being a mother. I made sure to capture it all; because they come and go before we know it and then what do we have to remember them by?
Smiles, we have those picture perfect smiles that society deems makes the best picture. In reality though, that’s not how our children are. They don’t smile big every single moment of the day, they have multiple personalities.. most might drive us insane, but we still love them regardless. It’s important to not overlook those memories, to cherish them the same. I know I want to look back a remember how AJ looked when he was concentrating, how he felt when I had the camera in his face, the good, bad, and funny moments of what seems to be an incredibly short time of life before they are “too cool” to be mom’s best friend.
I mean smiles aren’t bad, I personally love my little toddler smiles I get on the daily, I just feel like we don’t capture the whole picture. As photographers, that should be our calling.. showcasing it all. Every tantrum, every mouth full of food as they try their first purees, the bumps and bruises as they learn to walk, those are the symbols of advancement and growth. I will admit, I missed capturing many of them with my son, but I hope that others will learn and grow from my mistakes.
Capture it all.
Currently, as I am writing this, my son is pushing my phone into my lap, hoping I will sit and watch Paw Patrol with him. It's these moments that may irritate me, because I have so many things to fix at work that are just stressing me out, but I remember that these moments won't last forever. One day, my little, messy, constantly playing in the dirt, temper tantrum throwing, mootie giving, cuddly toddler will be grown. He won't need Mom to make him feel better when he hurts himself, he won't need Dad to make him his eggs every morning. As much as I hate the teething, the constant whining, the always tornado of my house, I learn to not take those moments for granted. Appreciate the everyday little things.
And this last one because we all know how toddlers are...