Day In The Life: Wilde Party of 7
A day in the life of the Wildes... Have you wondered what a Day In The Life session looks like? Here's a glimpse of what you can expect from this session--my FAVORITE session--the session that gives you the most intimate, most real, most powerful and ordinary images of your family that you never knew you wanted.
I'll arrive before the kids awake, and capture the sweet waking moments that as mothers we (usually) love so much. Right from the start, I don't direct or change anything about the scene I'm shooting. I tell the story of what is already happening.
I work to capture the simple but intimate interactions between parents and their children and to show how hard parents work. Danielle had just brought home twin girls, and I don't need to point out to anyone how hard her job as a mother of 5 will be. I make pictures of that without ever directing or changing the scene. Messy blankets and pajamas only help to make the image more authentic and lovely.
Danielle probably hopes that she will always remember how hard Jackson, her eldest, worked to help her when she brought home her twin girls, the last babies she'll have. She and Jackson have a sweet relationship that I feel is unique because of the way that Jackson always wants to help. It was important to me to make a picture that captured the way Jackson loves his mama and loves his baby sisters and the way that love brings them all together.
These three Wilde boys love to rough-house. And I love to capture it.
The boys played in the toy room while their mom fed the girls and I just watched and made pictures. I love the way motion brings images to life, and I love capturing the laughter and the tears as they beat each other up. Some day I hope they look back on these images and remember what it was like to be a brother.
See the cardboard in the windows? See the pillows askew and the toys on the floor? I know you'll worry about those things before I come into your home, but I hope you can see how these things only add to the beauty in the images we make. This is real life, and it is so beautiful.
Of course I love capturing the sweet moments between siblings as well. I thought I'd die of sweetness overload when they kissed their baby sister like this. These moments are all too fleeting and I'm glad I captured this moment for Dani.
Babies at even just a few weeks old have personality already, and I think their expressions are so fun to shoot.
Each kid is unique and has their own talents and likes and dislikes. I try to observe and capture the beauty in simple moments like this, when a child sits alone and makes his own artwork or reads his books.
I strive to show the deep love a mother has for her children and the way she expresses it. Dani is very affectionate with her babies and her boys, in different ways. She inspires me to show my love with more embraces and kisses.
While pets can sometimes take the back seat (or the trunk? or the roof?) when a new baby (or two) come into the family, they're still loved and appreciated and they have a special place in the family. This dog used to be mine before we moved abroad, so this is an especially emotional image for me because of the connection that remains. I also made images for the family of the dog interacting with the boys and protecting his baby girls by planting himself right in between the cribs.
Jackson really is such a sweet big brother. I was so impressed by his care of those baby girls.
Every day tasks like doctor's offices deserve to be captured, too! And taking a newborn (or two) to the doctor is not without it's stress and chaos...
... and sweet moments.
Grandma watched the boys while Mom took the babies to the doctor. When we returned we found her teaching Grayson to read and his mom was really excited about his progress. I loved the pride on his Grandma's face and the love from both women and the way Grayson stuck out his tongue from embarrassment.
Sometimes Mama and babies take a nap and big brothers spend some quiet time painting...
...or playing pirates.
The Wildes evening ritual in the summers is to turn the hose on, stick it in the trampoline, and let the boys go nuts. This made me giddy, because nothing inspires me more than motion and joy like this.
When Seth came home I could see how much he'd missed those baby girls all day. I couldn't wait to capture the love he felt for those little ones.
And there you have it! A day in the life of the Wilde family. Of course there were many more images and more routines that I worked to capture. Overall I was so pleased with the moments we were able to shoot and turn into priceless moments or artwork for their walls. And all we needed was their real life and my camera, knowledge and experience. I loved spending time with them, just as I always love spending time with the families I shoot.
This shoot was extra special to me because it's my big sister's family. Jackson was my first nephew, the first of my parents' grandchildren. He was the first baby that I ever fell head over heals in love with. Watching her family grow has been a formative experience for me. As kids, Dani taught me how to be a girl, how to take care of myself, how to be a friend, how to heal from a broken heart... and then as adults she taught me about what motherhood is. Spending this week with her family in Arizona this summer (while my sweet husband kept our kids at his parents' house across the country) helped me reflect on all the ways she and I have grown and learned from each other and from motherhood. I feel so honored to have documented some of the first moments of her family of seven together.