I opened the "doors" to Little Story Studio in 2012, but it wasn't until the second part of 2014 that I found my niche documenting family life. The very first session I shot in this fly-on-the-wall style was that of my good friends, Carolyn and Justin. They were totally open to letting me come to their house and follow them around for the evening. At the time, I didn't even have the correct gear, and some of the low light pictures could be technically better. But their session still gives me the feels when I watch it back.
That got me thinking-- if my eyes well up with tears watching this old video, what do my friends feel and think when THEY watch it back? So, I asked!
Here are the questions I asked Carolyn:
- Are there memories in there from the kids' stages that you had forgotten? Do you feel differently about those stages now than you remember feeling then?
- How did rewatching the video make you feel/ how did you react?
- Would you ever be interested in this type of session again?
Here's her video:
And here's what she said about it one and a half years later:
Its powerful to watch it just 1.5 years later, so I can only imagine what it will feel like years down the road.
There are so many details in the photos/video that it brings all the feelings back when I watch it. The way the furniture was arranged, the gates around everything, the baby getting into tissue boxes and constantly unloading the dishwasher. Watching it then and now gives me the same overwhelming feeling of joy that i'm able to live out this life.
The Story of a Day photos enable me to remember exactly what the kids were like when they were taken because you can see life in its full detail, the details of how they played and their interactions and bonds with each other -things I would never see or remember from looking at a posed photo. Little details like the way my oldest held onto my leg while I braided her hair and the joy of the girls laughing as they goofed around together before bedtime -- you feel the joy and beauty of those moments when you watch it, that is way more powerful then just remembering what they looked like at a particular age.
Yes, I really only want these kind of photos from now on. They make the mug shots seem lifeless. I'd also would really like to organize a story of a day session including my grandma because I want my kids to be able to remember HER in the future not just what she looked like.
So there you have it! If you've been putting off a documentary session with your family because your house is messy, you don't like cameras, you think it would be weird.... delay no longer! Keep your eye on the future. Imagine how much more Carolyn will treasure these when her kids move on to middle school, high school, and beyond. Imagine how you will treasure these pictures of your life RIGHT NOW - in all it's imperfect, life-with-kids glory.