Mother’s Day and how I’m kind of an accidental hypocrite

YIKES. That title is harsh, right? I must be an awful daughter. Let me explain.

Mother’s Day is just a few weeks away and tends to creep up really fast each year. I’ve got married sisters with kids and since I take their portraits throughout the year, I’ve put together a few photo books with images of all the grandkids and family photos for her for Mother’s Day and birthdays. And I add portraits of my dog to the book since I don’t have kids. She’s not super excited about having a grand dog, but I digress…

I wanted to blog about the importance of family photography and promote some Mother’s Day portrait sessions. I mean, really, wouldn’t your mom or the mother of your children love some beautiful updated portraits of the whole family to decorate her home with? Or wouldn’t it be great to surprise her on Mother’s Day with awesome images of the children? Or just a you and mom session? I’ve seen some adult child and parent photography and it’s wonderful, but not a lot of people do it, which is a shame!

Earlier this year, I documented with photography a Celebration of Life for a friend’s mother, lost in one of the most tragic ways imaginable. I was thankful that I had the opportunity to photograph her a few years ago- once with her sweet little dog, and once with her first grandson when he was a toddler. These images were shown at the celebration, along with a bunch of other photos that took those attending on a journey from when she was a baby through her entire life, and I know that these images, the professional ones and the snapshots, are going to be cherished by her family for generations. And I was glad to see several mother-daughter photos as well. While we will always have special memories in our hearts, these visual reminders can take us back in time and keep those moments bright in our minds.

I take photos of a lot of people. It’s what I do. I put their special moments on a piece of paper or a canvas, and it’s a treasure for them to hold on to and enjoy. But since I’m behind the camera most of the time, I don’t really have ANY photos of my mom and I. The last one? It’s an iPhone photo from almost a year ago, and no amount of Instagram filter is going to hide my sweat and lack of make up. Not to mention, my mom isn’t a fan of being in photos anyway, so she’s probably not super thrilled I’m sharing this photo!

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It was a fun night- my family’s first night on our first family vacation in FOREVER. We rented an awesome beach house in Florida, and we were having a great time at the pool. The moment is captured, for sure, but dang, I would really love to have some professional photos of my mom and me! It’s just something photographers never really think of doing for themselves since we’re always photographing other people.

And the photo books I’ve given my mom? She’s barely even in the photos. Maybe a few here and there, but like basically ALL women, including me, there are always insecurities. I think I have a cheesy smile that makes me have fat chipmunk cheeks. But I don’t see that when I photograph other women. I see love and happiness. I love photographing people in mid-laugh. I love photographing a genuine interaction between people that shows real personality and love. It’s authentic and it’s beautiful and that shows through much stronger than the extra ten pounds ladies sometimes ask me to “Photoshop out” for them. Those ten pounds are imaginary. YOU are real and YOU are amazing.

So my call to action here is to take some great photos with my mom, like ASAP. And I can’t just stop there. I need some great photos with the rest of my family- my dad, sisters, brother. These will be what we hold on to a long way down the road.

And what about you? Think about the last awesome photo you took with someone you love in your life. Some people are great about it, and some not (like me). So, with Mother’s Day fast approaching, take the time to at least get some snapshots of the woman in your life- your mom, grandma or the mother of your children- and PRINT them. Don’t keep ’em on the phone, silly!

If you’re in the Kansas City area and would like to give the gift of special memories captured in print, contact me to schedule a custom portrait session. The weather is warming up, flowers are blooming and everything is getting really green and beautiful! Outdoor afternoon sessions are available in the next few weeks leading up to May 14th (check out my blog on “The Art of Light” to see why afternoon/evening outdoor sessions really rock), and I have available studio space in the West Bottoms or in my home studio in Lee’s Summit if you’d like to do an indoor Mom and Me session! Check out my website for portrait session information and to contact me.

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Special thanks to Junik Studio for the floral watercolor elements seen above.

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