How many photos do you have of your kids? I’m guessing it’s probably in the hundreds? How many of those include you? Not many? Maybe a few selfies? In the years to come, are your children going to want to see 1000s of them or a few of you as a family?
These are questions that I’ve really had to ask myself since we got back from our holiday earlier this month. We had an amazing trip and have memories that we will treasure. I also have 100s of photos, many of which I’ll never get round to doing anything with, but I can count on the fingers of 1 hand the ones that include me, and I regret that. Here they are just to prove it!
So why don’t I have more?
- I’m always the one with the camera in my hand
- I hate having my photo taken and always feel really self conscious
- I’m a bit of a control freak
Any of this sound familiar? Maybe we all need to do something about it? Our children will thank us for it in the years to come.
Give your camera or phone to someone else - partner, friend, grandparent - and ask them to capture you playing around. Posed photos can be awkward, there are very few people who can be totally relaxed when they know there’s a camera pointing at them. However, if you don’t know it’s coming you are more likely to be yourself. I don’t mean get someone to jump out at you when you are least expecting it, I’m talking about someone in the background capturing the occasional shot of you playing around with your kids; being you.
Your children won’t care that your hair may not be perfect. They won’t notice that you aren’t all dressed up in your best gear. Their attention won't be drawn to that weak spot that you hate so much. They will love looking back on a bit of the everyday, seeing the way you used to play, read stories, mess around.
Of course, you could always hire a professional! I’d love to capture you and your family at home or at one of your favourite venues. I will be in the background and you’ll soon forget I’m there.
Whether you use a timer, get a friend to do it or hire a pro, don't put it off. Summer is the best time to start - evenings are longer, the sunshine puts everyone in a good mood, you are more likely to have time off for holidays. Make today the day you step in front of the camera.
And I am going to take a piece of my own advice. I’ll let you know how I get on!