Once in a while, a family crosses my path that makes quite the impression on me.
Now, before you gasp and wonder why on earth I would admit that, I actually mean it in the MOST positive way. This family - 23 members strong! - was wonderful to work with, kind and considerate and most of all... LOVING.
Marj and Dick were celebrating 50 years of marriage - yes, FIFTY! - and wanted to have their entire family photographed together. We met at the beautiful Serenity Farm in Oconomowoc, WI on a gorgeous summer day. (The beautiful weather was my gift to them.)
From our planning discussions leading up to the session, I knew that having some photos that "coordinated" would be important. Can't you just picture these being part of an amazing wall gallery?
Each family had their portraits taken in different spots on the farm. They picked the places that they wanted to use. I love the uniqueness of each group.
Through the planning we did before this extended family session, as well as the time during the day of the shoot, I got to know each part of the big group more and more. One thing that stood out is that they all love and admire Marj and Dick TREMENDOUSLY.
At one point, while my assistant was setting up the next set for a big group shot, I snagged the couple and we snuck inside the barn, away from the noise, chaos and excitement. I sat them down close together and put a long lens on my camera so I could distance myself from them. Meanwhile, I had them talk quietly to each other about the day they met... about how they knew they were "the one"... about the rich life they built together...
A tear or two may have been shed. These were the resulting images.
When working with the individual families to create their own albums and wall displays, one of the grown kids said something to me that truly tugged on my heart. We were finalizing the order of the pages for her album. Cathy wrote to me, "I am also toying with moving the pages with my parents from the back to the front. I like the idea of them in the front because without them, the rest of the book wouldn't exist."
That is storytelling at its finest.
I think it's safe to say, "they lived happily ever after."
Planning a family reunion or a big family session for your extended family? Let's talk! Contact me today so we can start getting dates figured out. Getting a date that everyone can agree on is the #1 the hardest part. Once you do that, the rest is EASY!