I was so excited when fellow photographer and friend Yan asked me to document her family in Florida. Yan and I met at a photography workshop in Denver, Colorado in October 2017. We were each assigned a family to photograph over two days and Yan’s family had of four or five kids (I think they were all boys and there were a lot of them). I still remember one silhouetted image she made of a little boy carving a pumpkin, his knife and profile where perfecting positioned in the frame. She’s an exceptional photographer so when she asked me to document her family I was intimidated! She regularly photographs her little one so what could *I* contribute to the volumes of photos she already has of her kid?
A lot, it turns out.
It’s a completely different experience photographing your own children and actually being photographed with them, interacting with them, seeing how they look at you in the moment.
We agreed I’d come to her home in Florida the first weekend in February and I happily accepted the opportunity to spend a a few days away from the the bitter Northeastern winter. Before I came, Yan and I chatted about how the day will be structured and she would make sure her son wouldn’t be looking at any screens during the day I would be there. In the morning he goes to a kid’s workshop at Home Depot (awesome, and definitely doing this with my kids if it’s still available), then tennis (again, awesome) and then since the Chinese New Year was approaching she planned on making dumplings (ummm… YAS!!). She also told me she was giving her son Chinese lessons and would love some shots of his despair as he sits through these tedious sessions. All these activities were PEFECT for me to capture.
In between running around and meals there was quite moments of transition, laundry, play and silliness. I was surprised how much actually happened with only one child who was active, creative, inquisitive and engaged with the world around him.
It was such a pleasure spending time with them and I’m so happy they have these memories of this playful time in her son’s life.