It’s a really wonderful thing when you get to know people through working with them several times. It’s been about a year since I saw the Tompkins family last, when their sweet daughter was just a new baby. And I’ve had the pleasure of photographing this little one since before she was born since I also took their maternity pictures as well. There is the sense of familiarity, and things generally seems to flow better than the first time when people get to work together again and again. In addition to knowing tidbits about each other’s lives, there’s also inside jokes from sessions past that make for great fun and relaxed composures. All these things are awesome and pros for sticking with one photographer over time.
Jess had a vision of what she wanted, and that included an expectation of making beautiful family images on a delightful autumn afternoon. There was the foresight that adding an adorable, yet independent one-year old into our mix might cause a hiccup or two. I have photographed lots of newly independent, walking little people and really, what I’ve learned is that one can never really know what to expect. It’s been a while since I’ve had this lesson, but I learned it again this day. Sometimes we just have to let them do what they want to do, corral the best we can, seek momentary opportunities, and in my corner particularly–document it in the best possible way.
I think mama left feeling a little defeated–but I knew there were lots gems in the mix of their toddler on the move. I won’t get the film shots I took that day back for a little bit yet and I think even though the experience didn’t go perfectly as planned, their life together is beautiful and it looks beautiful here. Real life is an ever evolving experience of adjusted expectations, this I am learning over and over again. But it is amazing what joy can come from the little bumps, even in picture form. Real and messy life is the best stuff, the kind that makes chuckle-worthy memories and the fondest of smiles later… the kind that pulls on heart strings when we realize time is fleeting and all of it is just so good.
Thanks so much to the Tompkins family. I’m such a fan of your story and am blessed each time I get to work with you. =)