Why do people have a family portrait made? Taken every few years, the family portrait provides cherished memories of how the family looked “back then” and a fond record of the children’s growth. Family portraits also document the growth of a family, as new generations are added to the group. In our area, i,e, DC, the number one reason that clients call us to create a family portrait is because the complete family is getting together for some special occasion. Usually, the parents have one or more grown children who don’t live at home anymore. More often than not, this person is married and has a family, as well. This gives us an opportunity to create a three-generation memento. With these extended families, we have photographed from eight to thirty people in one image. Having the family all in one place also gives us the opportunity to photograph a number of secondary family portraits, which will increase sales considerably—mother and father together, all the children together, mother and daughters, father and sons, mother with all the children, all the men or women in the family, and so forth.
What makes a great family portrait
A great portrait captures the warmth and love between family members. The modern-day family portrait should be a fun experience for the family members. Almost gone are the days of rigid posing, replaced by less formal more emotional imagery. Photographing families is a challenge that draws on all of our photographic skills since the family portrait as a whole is only as good as each of the individuals in the portrait. We generally look at each person in the portrait and ask, “Could each of these individual portraits stand alone?” If the answer is “Yes,” then we feel that we have done a good job. The first thing to remember is that each person in the group is interested primarily in how he or she looks. So, that means that we have to pay attention to every person in the group, individually. No matter how good the pattern of the group, if people don’t like the way they look, all our time and effort are wasted. Each person in a group must look great—as if they are photographed alone. We make it a point, in fact, to pose and light great individual portraits within his groups, a technique that takes time and patience to perfect.
Family portraits have changed over the years. With so many extended families, due to remarriage, the family portrait often doesn’t resemble the family portrait of years past. Not only has the structure of the family changed, but so has the attitude of what constitutes a family portrait. A mother and her kids, two young sisters, a dad and his newborn son, even a man and his dog all constitute the modern-day family portrait. The primary connection in any family portrait is the love shared between the subjects. There is a bond that is deeper than association or friendship, and it is the task of the family portrait photographer to render that connection with emotion and honesty. That is what makes a great family portrait.
To know more or if you want to capture your family in a Family portrait, contact us now!