We've all heard the stereotype. It's picture day again and your spouse is asking "didn't we JUST get our pictures taken?" Maybe mom and dad are excited but the kids don't want to sit still and look at a camera. And WHAT ARE these clothes you're making them wear, anyway?! Why do we do this every year? Is it really THAT important?
The short answer: OF COURSE IT IS!!!
Sorry. I got a little carried away there with the screamy capital letters. I'll try not to yell-type at you again. I just happen to be very passionate about documenting families, and I'm going to give you 6 reasons why.
1. You're documenting the most important moments of your life!
I have a few friends and relatives who are past the age of having children at home. One thing I've heard from almost all of them was about the "best time of their lives". And the time period is always the same. Can you guess what it is? You've probably heard it too. It's when their children were young and they got to spend each day together.
Kids change really quickly. I'm so blessed to be able to follow some of the same families and photograph their children year after year, and I've learned that 365 days makes a crazy difference when it comes to the growth of babies and kids! Each phase is so short that we don't want to miss a single thing!
2. Photos increase in value!
How many items can you think of that become more valuable to you with every passing day? Other than my home, I can't think of one single thing I own that actually increases in value over time. And even then, home values go up and down with market changes. Only my photographs are guaranteed to become more valuable to me year after year. The baby photos of my children were a treasure to me the day they were taken, but as the kids grew and changed, with every new step, every new word, and every milestone along the way, life changed. It became harder to remember the days of nursing and gummy smiles, fat cheeks and belly laughs, but those photos take me right back to that time. I know that one day my own children will move out. My home will no longer be filled with the sound of giggles and running feet. I know that one day, devoid of bear hugs, cuddles, and arms reaching up to me, I'll look at those photos and they will be worth infinitely more than they are now.
3. Family sessions are fun and enjoyable!
Contrary to the stereotype, family sessions can be fun! I like to make my lifestyle sessions enjoyable for the whole family. You'll be asked to play games, cuddle up, and interact with each other naturally, so you and your kids (!) will genuinely be smiling by the time that shutter clicks and that moment is recorded forever!
4. Photos make great gifts!
Do you have anyone in your life who has everything? Do you ever wonder what you could get them during the holidays that they don't already have? Are you a big meanie who enjoys seeing someone cry when they unwrap the perfect gift? I am! And I got to experience just that the year I gave my mom a wall sized print of our whole family. Whether it's a close relative who'd love a framed photo of your family, or someone who'd enjoy a photo session for their own family, it's guaranteed to be a gift they'll treasure forever! And you might just get to see them cry.
5. Photos are a great way to decorate your home!
There are so many ways to display your photos that you can match any decor style! A large wall gallery is a great way to personalize your space while making it feel like home. One of my favorite parts of a photo session is the ordering session, where I get to show my clients exactly what their photos will look like hanging on their walls! To take your decor game to the next level, you can dress for your family session in clothing that will coordinate with the rest of your decor. Once the photos are hanging, they'll look that much more awesome!
6. You never know when your last family photo will be taken.
This is a hard thought to think, but it's honestly my own personal most important reason to take photos each year. We never know if we'll get one more year, one more week, or even one more day with each of our precious loved ones. With the blessing of seeing families grow and change also comes the tragedy of taking the last known photos of some of my clients' parents, grandparents, and siblings. I've unfortunately seen firsthand what a gift it can be for families to have had a recent photo session when one member passes away unexpectedly. Sometimes we want to wait until we look better or have more money to have our photos taken, but these experiences have taught me that there really is no time like the present to document this beautiful time in our lives, just as they are.
If you get family photos done yearly, what's your most important reason? If not, what holds you back?