If you know me and we are “friends” on facebook, than you are probably familiar with my ongoing “Her & Me” commentary. “Her & Me” is a collection of dialogue from conversations with my 5 yr old, most often referred to as “Her” or, on my blog, “Tiny Assistant”. It’s nothing earth-shattering, just the funny, brutally honest and sometimes inappropriate musings of the Little Miss. She’s quite the character. I know I’m biased, but hey, aren’t we all? She is never shy about letting me know exactly what she is thinking at all times. This includes criticizing my habit of documenting every moment of her life on camera:
Her: You need to put that down or I am not going to make a nice face for a picture. Ever. Again.
She would probably follow through on that too. But, I can’t help it! Not only am I a parent, but I’m also a photographer. Double whammy.
Tiny Assistant has been on to me for quite some time now…she sees the camera attached to my hand and runs. Or, pauses for 1/10 of a second, gives me her “This IS a real smile” smile and bolts out of the frame. I do manage to get the portraits I want, but it’s much, much easier to take pictures of your kids!
While my daughter is really just annoyed that I am interrupting her play by sticking my camera in her face, I do sometimes see a bigger benefit to following her demand: if I am always behind the camera, I am not really participating in what we are doing. Yep – I get it. I need to be present in our activities, not just documenting them. So, I make an effort to compromise – a few pictures if it is really warranted and then all play. One thing I will not give up however, is taking our picture together…since I am always behind the camera, I am rarely in the pictures. So, I try as much as possible engage her in negotiations for taking a picture with me. “Just two minutes, honey and we’ll be all finished with the pictures.” (Yeah, so usually it’s 15 minutes.) Sometimes this works, sometimes not…but it’s the only way I end up in a photograph with my kid.
Bottomline? I probably will never stop taking photos of my daughter, but I will “put that camera down!” more often…
Of, course, I do make sure we do a more formal portrait session once or twice a year, but that round negotiations is a whole other story…
Enjoy your day!