On Superbowl Sunday I met up with a local Flagstaff, Arizona Family to help them capture updated family photos. KaDeidra, her husband and their two children were the first family photoshoot I had on the books since the end of 2019 when I met up with a small family in Phoenix, Arizona for holiday photos. I remember coming out of my last family photoshoot session feeling discouraged. The location we had gone to was buzzing with a ton of families and photographers running around for their holiday photos and it was hard to stay focused and confident on the task at hand. I felt very out of my element, as it was the first photoshoot I did after moving to Phoenix in the Fall of 2019.
Something I've been doing to feel more confident in photoshoots lately is pre-planning and researching different prompts for capturing people more naturally (example: on the count of three tell me which sibling gets into the most trouble - the answer usually leaves the whole group laughing and pointing fingers). In my whole photography career I never gave prompts much attention or thought, but since incorporating them into my sessions it feels like everyone has more fun and feels more relaxed. It's also been a really fun way to get to know my clients!
What I loved most about this shoot was that when we reached the end and parted ways, everyone shared how much fun they had during the session. It wasn't just a soul-sucking, posed and cheesy photoshoot with a stranger, it was a bonding experience where I felt like I was an honorary member of their family for the day. I called my mom after this session and said, "I just feel really grateful that I'm getting to connect with people in our community and that people have a really positive experience working with me! It makes me really happy!". Working with KaDeidra and her family humbled me and it was such a gift helping them capture their family as their most authentic selves.
"We had a such a great time, she made us very comfortable. As a family we had a lot fun taking the pictures and just being ourselves. She captured a lot of moments of us just being us which is being silly. I loved how ALL our photos came out. Friends told us that you could feel the love and happiness in our photos. I will definitely recommend and definitely book more sessions. Thank you so much Jess!!"