It's a process, this photography thing, and I think I'm finally learning a valuable lesson, one that I already knew but wasn't putting into practice, and it has to do with capturing the person in the picture. You know, who they really are, and not trying to force them into the way you think the picture should look.
I've taken so many more pictures of my youngest daughter lately because she's home so much more and we have the opportunity. So I'm used to her grumpiness, her solemn looks that haunt, her serious face. It's what she came with, what she does and here's how I know. I have picture after picture of her as an infant asleep, just a few months old with the biggest, frown-iest scowl on her face that you can imagine. We still laugh about those pictures. It's like there's a gravitational downward pull on her facial muscles. Contrast that to the fact that she's my giggliest child and you have a real puzzle on your hands.
And then there's my middle child. The soft and sensitive soul. The dreamer. The one so quiet that you have to go looking for her to make sure you still have her. She does not come by scowling naturally. She is peaceful, happy, gentle, a thinker. Photography sessions with her require more spontaneity, a quick click, distraction, a conversation, questions that evoke a certain response and then I can see her.
It is me who must adapt to the situation, rather than forcing my model into a certain box, or a look that I think I want. If I do this, I fail. If I let them be who they are, they shine every time. So I guess you could say I've brought to light a valuable metaphor for parenting. All because I went and bought a camera.
Oh, and the hat, you ask? Organic cotton crocheted earflap hat. Light pink with olive trim. I'll try to put it in the shop soon.