Meet the Robinsons
How I became a documentary family photographer
I have a secret to tell you. When I first began my photography business I really disliked photographing families. I would take them to parks or beaches. We would talk about what they *should* wear. I would find the pretty light and pose them, giving them prompts or placing them in the most flattering positions. I would hope so hard that the kids would behave so I could get the shots that mom and dad wanted.
It didn’t take long before this felt like work to me. Not the enjoyable kind of work that leaves you feeling like you’ve poured yourself out in serving others, but work that felt somewhat empty an inauthentic to who I am, what matters most to me, and honestly to my clients as well.
It wasn’t until I took a long, hard look at the stories that have shaped me- the joys, fears, disappointments and delights- that I was able to bring the way I am made to how I photograph families. The things that matter most to me are not how a family looks at a given point in time, though making portraits is important to me as well.
What matters more to me is how a family feels, how a home feels. Forget the park at golden hour, lovely though it may be. What makes my heart sing is to see the real you, the culture of your home and family that is completely unlike anyone else’s. You can’t find that on your Pinterest inspiration board.
It’s an amazing privilege to be invited into a family’s life for a day- even a few hours- to get a glimpse of the unique beauty of their love and connection. The highs and lows, the messes and triumphs are all a part of it. I don’t want to see your home picked up for company. I want to show you how perfect it is right now, because it reflects who you are, in this very moment- fully known, fully flawed, yet fully loved and accepted. Isn’t that the best news?
And sometimes we need to see ourselves through someone else’s eyes to practice radical self-acceptance. It’s a vulnerable thing to put yourself in front of anyone’s lens. I never take it lightly.
Sarah and I became friends through social media a couple years ago. I’m so glad I risked sounding like a total stalker and asked her out to coffee. Turns out we are practically neighbors, and have become friends. She is an inspiring, honest, bold, bad-ass woman in her own right, and seeing her juggle motherhood, work and running always makes me reflect on what really matters to me (and how fast and far I want to run). And she and Owen love Tacoma as much as me. Tacoma loves you too, Robinsons!
Sarah and Owen have created a loving and inviting family, a beautiful home, an intentional life. I couldn’t be more honored to get to see it and share it. An ordinary Saturday is always anything but. Magic happens in moments unseen to you most of the time. Little did we know this day that I photographed one of Desmond’s last nursing sessions. Oh, the bittersweetness of that.
Thank you, Robinson Family.
“Perfection!! I’m so happy we did this. Owen is too, and let me tell you- that guy was on the fence. BUT we’d have paid…for just that pic of us all taking off Desmond’s pants. You are a true artist. anything I can do to promote you just say the word. “
“SWOON. Tears delivered. Thank you for these treasures.”Owen