I am so excited to welcome Beryl Young to Bump Life. She is an amazing photographer (as you can see below) and hosts wonderful online classes helping moms learn to capture their family’s precious memories, as well as heal and grow through the art of photography. More importantly, Beryl is a dedicated mom (as you can also see below) and truly embodies the spirit here at Bump Life. She and I became fast friends this summer while we both participated in an INCREDIBLE 8-week business e-course. Be sure to head over to berylaynyoung.com and check out all she has going one AND catch my guest post on her site about Quality Time vs Quantity Time. And I can guarantee this is not the last collaboration you see between us!!
It happens to me during every special event, holiday, or family gathering. I get “the phone call”.
The one where someone very non-nonchalantly gets on the line and says, “we’re sooooo looking forward to seeing you….oh and don’t forget to bring your camera!”. One would think that as a photographer this would light me up in excitement and fits of joy. Unfortunately, quite the opposite usually happens and resentment quickly sets in instead of happiness.
Here’s a peek into my self-talk after “the call”:
Did they really just ask for pictures again?
Why do I always have to be the one taking the pictures?
Can’t I just relax and enjoy this get together too?
This is going to leave me with a ton of editing work I don’t have time for.
Maybe I can conveniently “forget” my camera at home.
Or maybe I’ll bring it and the battery will just “happen” to die while we’re there.
OR, maybe I’ll just try to hide the camera and they’ll forget they even asked about pictures in the first place.
There is this assumption that simply because I have a fancy camera, because I am a photographer, that I love taking photos.
I am indeed over the moon, excited, passionate, giddy about my camera and making memories.
But once you put a camera in my hand I enter THE ZONE. When I am in THE ZONE I am not 100% available to my family. I want to get the right pose, the great shot, the perfect moment. Ultimately, when I have my camera out for the full duration of a gathering with family or friends I always end up regretting my actions later. Why?
Because I’ve just completely missed out on an opportunity to be in the moment and enjoy quality time with the people who mean the most to me.
Maybe you can relate?
Maybe you’re the one who spent all summer trying your hardest to soak in all the magic of beach vacations, trips to visit far away family, or sightseeing adventures in a new place you’ve never seen before. But, you’ve done it while squinting to see through the half inch eye piece of your camera. Snapping away and then quickly reviewing to make sure you got that magic captured on film. Later on, while sitting in a hotel room of worn out, cranky, exhausted, or napping family members you realize that you were so worried about capturing the moments, that you forget to enjoy the laughter, happiness, and exploration that was unfolding while you were behind the lens.
Fortunately for you, I have a few actions steps today that will get you on the way to spending more quality time with your kids and family while also capturing plenty of the memories you want to preserve as well.
I’ll also say the steps I’m about to share will also work for those of you that have the opposite problem to the one I described above. Those of you who bring your camera along on vacations, trips, or to special events but come home with no pictures! You never think to reach for your camera because you’re clueless when it comes to what to take photos of or you don’t want to disturb the flow of everyone getting along and having a great time.
If any of these scenarios describe you then I want you to take action now! Ready?
1) Grab a notebook or piece of scratch paper and write down 5 upcoming photo opportunities that involve your family. Could be an upcoming vacation, birthday party, day trip, trip to the local farmer’s market. Figure out the next few places where you’ll have a desire to shoot pictures but will want to spend time enjoying the company of your family too.
2) Once you make your list draw a circle around your favorite activity or event. We’re going to focus on that one for today.
3) Now go download my FREE Momtographer Tips and Tricks Guide. In it not only will you find tips and tricks for taking better photos of your kids, but you’ll also have access to an awesome workbook page where we’ll determine the must have shots for your upcoming activity.
4) Use the workbook to list the 5-10 must have shots you’d like to snap during your chosen photo op. My daughter’s 2nd birthday is coming up and I’ve already been planning my must have list for shots for her
party: the cake, her in her party dress, a picture with mom and dad, her presents, detail shots of her opening
presents, a shot of the guests mingling at the party, playing with friends, the favors, the decor, etc…
5) Circle any of the shots on your list that can be taken BEFORE the activity even starts (if any…) and get those shots a priority!
6) Concentrate your photo taking on getting one good shot of each item on your list. Once you snap them, put the camera away. Don’t think about it anymore. Your job is done for the day and it’s time to relax and enjoy quality time with the people you love the most.
In the comments below I’d LOVE it if you’d share with me how you plan to implement these action steps. What will you take photos of? Have any ideas for planning your shoot or exactly what you might try to capture that you may not have thought of before? Share your ideas here and let’s gear up for some photo taking fun!