The Importance of Being in a Photograph
Why You Need to Be in Your Family Pictures
“You never realize how important pictures are until they are all you have” -Unknown
If you’ve ever clung to the picture of someone you’ve loved and lost, this post is for you.
Imagine, for a moment, your loved ones remembering you after you’re gone. They flip through photos of family gatherings, family pictures, vacation memories, and so on. You’re smiling and laughing, and your loved ones smile too, in spite of the heartache of losing you. Those memories—the fact that you still exist there in those photographs—brings them comfort.
Did you notice what your family members didn’t say in that scenario? They do not utter, “Yikes, she was heavy that year, I cannot believe it! I wish she wouldn’t have been in this photograph!” or “man, his hair was a catastrophe. It’s too bad he ruined this fun family memory with his disastrous style.”
All your loved ones will care about is the ability to see you, smiling back at them, from that photograph. There is something special about being able to look back and those black and white photos of your grandparents, you know when wedding photography did not include hundreds, if not thousands of images. The evolution of digital cameras and a digital image is often taken for granted today.
We are spoiled with the easy to use point and shoot camera or the one of your phone that we no longer seek out a professional photo shoot. iPhones have made us an amateur photographer as the image quality of an iPhone is better than most cameras that a beginner photographer would have, but keep in mind a printed image of your family, including you, is worth even more.
It’s tempting to see the worst in ourselves, to feel self-conscious, and to say, “no, I don’t want my picture taken.” But when you take a step back and realize these pictures are ultimately about the memories you create with your family and friends, suddenly, you realize how important it is to be in those photographs. Enjoy your moment with your family while someone else worries about depths of field, shutter speed, light passing through their image sensor and all those other technical aspects.
Photos matter before you’re gone, too
Family photographs aren’t just crucial once a loved one is gone; they are also important reminders of our lives as we grow older.
Ask anyone over the age of 60, and they will tell you that photos are invaluable when recalling moments from the past. Family pictures allow us to reminisce about our lives, our kids, our loved ones: they will enable us to relive moments in our lives that define who we are, where we’ve been, and how far we’ve come. Plus, we can enjoy the change in photographic techniques when we look back, remember the floating head from your elementary school pictures?
Photos allow us to look back on our children when they were newborns, then in their school years, at graduation, and their weddings. They evoke emotions of beautiful times in our lives—and sometimes of the difficult times, too. Photographs are a lifeline to the past.
By refusing to appear in photos, you’re taking yourself out of those memories. Next time you want to wiggle your way out of a picture, get in the frame instead and smile wide for the camera. It’s going to be a great memory someday.
Professional photography preserves the best of you
Local photographers train to see your portraits from an artistic point of view, meaning your family pictures will be flawless and beautiful. Whether you’re hiring someone to do newborn photography, family photography, or portrait photography, you’re preserving captured memories in the best possible light.
Chances are, you’re going to be in your best outfits, everyone’s hair will be brushed (hopefully), and you’ll find a location that makes an ideal backdrop. Add in your photographer’s expert editing abilities, and you’re almost guaranteed to get family photos that you will treasure for years to come.
Hiring a professional photographer is an investment in your future memories. It’s worth the cost.
Have authentic moments
Posed and professional photos are great, but it’s also important to have authentic photographs in your collection: memories of spontaneous moments in the life of your family. And it would be best if you were in those photographs so you and others can remember that moment forever.
Maybe you’re the one who usually takes the pictures. If that’s the case, make a conscious effort to hand off the camera to someone else, engage in the moment, and exist in the photographs. These memories will be invaluable to you, your family and friends.
Not every photographer works with a zoom lens, and we are not looking to use our macro photography skills to enlarge your not so favorite spots. We want to provide you with prints and digital photography that you can enjoy for the many years to come.
Leave your insecurities at the door
We are our own harshest critics. We look in the mirror and see the worst, and that mindset makes it tempting to bow out of family photography sessions.
Your loved ones do not care about how you look, if your makeup is just right, or if you’re balding. They care about you. In the end, that picture will be a treasured keepsake, no matter how you looked or felt on the day.
Our memories and our cherished moments exist in photographs. Over the years, we can look back at those moments and appreciate their importance in our lives. When we are gone, we will still exist in those photographs, leaving behind a legacy of smiles and laughs for our loved ones to treasure.
So get out of the shadows, get in front of the camera, and create memories your loved ones can keep forever.
Laura Barnett Photography - Las Vegas Based Photographer - Henderson Photographer - Copyright 2019