As Mother’s Day approaches my attention is drawn to family pictures.
This got me thinking about how many photos do I have of my mother with me? How many of me with either grandmother. I have less than 10 of my mother and myself next to each other. And I have much less with my grandmothers. In fact I have zero of my Grandma Lily (my dad’s mom) next to me in a photo. And I found only 3 of my Grandma Bessie, and of those 3, two are birthday photos and the third is a cute shot of me sitting on the living room sofa in between her and my grandfather, and she is planting a kiss on my four year old cheek. My story is common in my generation – those of us born in the 1950’s and 60’s.
Fast to forward to the Digital Age happening right now. And a similar thing is true. The current generation may be the most photographed generation of all time but often these snapshots are not of the whole family. I would be remiss if I didn’t point out the deeper value of a professional portrait.
The meaning behind #BeInPictures
“Be in pictures” is a searchable hashtag [#beinpictures] used by photographers, on Twitter and Instagram, it is also searchable on the web in general and will bring up various portrait blogs. The two most common forms of the idea are: #beinpictures and #existinphotos.
This seemed like a great opportunity to explore a topic I feel deeply about. It is the reason I am a photographer: to create a legacy for you, with photos that you will be very proud to show everyone that visits your home. Family photos that are in your life, that you see every day, that you deeply love – a series of portraits of your and your family that becomes more valued as time passes.
It is fair to say, personal photography has exploded. Everyone owns a camera nowadays because cameras are built into almost all personal digital devices.
I have seen first hand how mothers love to document their families – particularly babies and toddlers. So when it comes to taking photos that include dad, who is usually missing from the picture? Mom. Because she is behind the camera! Circling back to my message reminding you to exist in portraits, it is for the sole purpose of being in pictures with your children, for your children.
Family Portraits Can Boost Your Child’s Self Esteem
I was looking into this topic further and found an interesting website: https://phototherapy-centre.com/ and learned about the expert, David Krauss a licensed psychologist from Cleveland, Ohio. He one of the earliest pioneers in using people’s personal photography and family albums to assist in mental health counseling and therapy. When asked whether digital or printed photos had the greatest positive impact for your child, he has said: “My bias is very simple. I think they (family photographs) should be on the wall,” and has also said: “I think it is really important to show a family as a family unit. It is so helpful for children to see themselves as a valued and important part of that family unit.”
According to Judy Weiser, a psychologist, art therapist and author, based in Vancouver, family portraits “lets children learn who they are and where they fit.” She goes on to say when a child sees a family portrait with them included, the say to themselves: “These people have me as part of what they are, that’s why I belong here.”