You know how when a coworker asks what you did over the weekend, and you can’t remember what you did? Or when you meet someone new, and they ask what you do for fun, and your mind goes blank?
I feel you. I’ve been there.
When you’re looking at a documentary session, you’re probably thinking, “we don’t do anything fun.” Or maybe you think all we do is run errands/clean house/insert other responsibility here. But those everyday things are ripe for documenting. In 15 years do you think going to the store will look the same with a 17-year-old instead of a two-year-old? You will long for those days. You may not want to go back, but you will have those memories.
A day in the life session (or half-day) are perfect for capturing those Saturday routines. I can still remember weekends growing up. We would go to Cubs Food, and if we were well behaved, we got a new pack of baseball cards. Sometimes we got to stop in the movie rental spot and pick out a VHS ( don’ know what those are? Click here). I remember bringing my laundry to my parent’s room and picking up my room. You don’t have to think about what activity you want to do for those sessions because I basically become your personal paparazzi as you go about your daily business.
But if you are doing a slice of life session, we come up with an activity that your family loves to do together. On our pre-consultation, I will ask you what your family likes to do. I’ll put you on the spot. But don’t worry, I have some suggestions to help out if you struggle with ideas.
Some things to consider is the time of year and if we will be inside or outdoors. I don’t mind outdoor sessions in the middle of summer, but not everyone can stand hanging out in an oven. If summer is your jam, we can head outdoors safely for your activity.
Once we determine if we are having an indoor dance party or heading to the great outdoors, we will brainstorm a bunch of fun things you enjoy doing. I’ll ask you a bunch of questions about you, your family, and your favorite things. Not just your preferred activity but places and foods too!
If someone were to ask me my three favorite things to do outside I’d say run, hike, and take pictures but if they dig a little bit, I will probably mention how I enjoy reading a book and drinking coffee on my patio. Oh! And I love taking my dogs for a walk. And going to the pool with my nephew. I love getting an ice cream cone and walking outside. With a little bit of digging, I can start rattling off all kinds of outdoor activities.
When hanging out at home, I love movie night with snacks. Or watching the Dbacks on TV. We like to grill our dinner and sip margaritas. We play with the dogs. Well, with Shadow. Uly is too lazy to play. I do my workouts by going around the dogs who think my mat is for them. It would be a funny thing to do for photos.
What I don’t want for your session is to see something you like but have never done. It will be harder to find authentic fun moments if your family isn’t having fun or unsure of what to do. I love taking photos at the pool, but if your family never goes to the pool, don’t start for the pictures.
Documentary photography is all about your life as it is. We are setting out to capture you in your natural state.
Curious what activity your family could do for a session? Get your free PDF with over 50 different suggestions to get your brain thinking!