Saturday, 10 January 2015

Being Mum in front of the camera.

23. Have (updated) professional family photos done (Completed September 21, 2014)

This was a goal I was both excited about ticking off, but also dreading.

I was one of those mothers.  I was going to lose weight and have photos!  Except instead of losing weight, the number on the scale was going up.  And I realised that if I waited until I lost weight, I was never going to have photos of my family that included me.  Because despite the fact that I take photos of families for a living, and despite the fact I am constantly telling mothers to get in to photos with their children - I did not practice what I would preach.  

I cried when I went shopping for an outfit.  I came home empty handed and frustrated and in a very self depreciating mood.  Ty hid from me.  It wasn't a fun experience for either of us!  I went back without him.  I went back in to one shop, decided I wanted something in navy blue, and set myself the task.  I didn't look for long.  The first thing that looked ok was what I got.  Turns out, I rather love that dress.  It's pretty, it's comfortable, and it doesn't cling to my fat rolls.  Fingers crossed, Gina.  Hope for the best.  

Still, right up until I actually got there?  I wanted to cancel that shoot.  I made up many excuses in my head as to how I could put it off until I lost that weight.  For the record, if I did, I'd still be waiting.  And our photographer was not going to let me out of it - she knew exactly where my head was.

Mandii from Xanthe Photography is my kind of person - fun, silly, natural.  We've developed a friendship through our love of photography, and I am so grateful to have her in my life.  She was having none of my self-hate.  And despite not loving myself very much, I trusted her.  And she was great.  And she is amazing at what she does.  And I am so in love with our family photos.  We now have 2 beautiful canvases hung in our lounge room - a family portrait, and one of our 3 gorgeous kids with their favourite soft toys.  I am soon to create a photobook displaying my 60 favourite images.  And I 100% LOVE showing our photos to people, and absolutely do not care what people think of me in these photos.  Because they are so beautiful, and they are so us.  And they make me SO happy.

And here's the thing.  I surprised myself.  The first image that Mandii gave us a sneak peak of made me cry.  Me and my baby boy.  Not "OMG look at how awful I look", but "OMG I finally have a stunning photo of me and my Memphis".  And it is.  And I actually kinda love myself in it.  I look at it and think wow, he's so tiny yet suddenly not so tiny.  Look at his cheeky grin and those little fingers.  Those beautiful big eyes.  And look at me.  It's nothing to do with the fact that I  actually don't look that fat and everything to do with the fact that I look HAPPY.  That's me and my baby.  (The colour version is amazeballs, by the way... I've attached it further down!)

The first image I saw from our shoot.

All of our images captured our family exactly as we are.  Silly, cheeky, fun.  The kids had fun, and were able to explore.  Ty and I were comfortable.  The end result is a beautiful gallery full of happy photos.  So many people have made comment on how happy we look.  How much fun we must have had.  And fancy that, not one person has commented about my weight.  I've had nothing but positive comments.  And sure I still need to lose weight, but I needed to have these photos more.  It wasn't really about waiting for me to lose weight, in the end.  It was capturing my family as it is now.  Young, fun, silly.  Memphis just before he turns 1, Zavian as his cheeky 3 year old self, and Lexi, our 5 year old school girl.  Still in those stages of innocence that seem to evaporate far too early these days.

I needed these photos as much for the kids as I did for me.  They'll look back on photos I myself have taken, sure, and there are many many many images of the 3 of them and also a lot of them with their Daddy.  But images with Mummy are sparse because I hide behind the camera.  Ty rarely takes photos of me with the kids and a lot of the photos of me with them are selfies from a camera phone.  So now they have beautiful images.  Images that they will look back on and say hey look, there's my mum.  I can pretty much guarantee they'll be looking at our family and how happy we are.  And that they won't give a rats ass about the size of my body.

Go and have photos taken with your children.  Every child needs a beautiful photo with their mum.  But more than that, every mum needs one with her children.  Lucky for me, I now have quite a few.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, stunning pics Genes. Such a beautiful little family <3