My parents came to Swansea for a visit at the weekend, and it was just wonderful to see them.
I don’t get to see them anywhere near as much as I would like, as they live in Kent and it’s quite a long drive for them to get to me, or for me to do too often with 2 young children in the back of the car!
So it was a real treat to have them here, and to be able to spend a nice, relaxed day with them. We took Rhys out for a walk in Singleton park which was great as my Mum got to see the Botantical gardens in all their glory – they’re stunning at the moment, fair play to the gardeners who plant and tend to the flower displays!
The rest of the day was spent just pottering and chatting in the garden while the children played, and then I had a real treat and went out for dinner, just me and my parents while Steve put the kids to bed.
It was a really lovely day (and evening), but I realised when I went to bed that I hadn’t taken a single photo. On the one hand, I was pleased with that, as I’d properly experienced the whole day, rather than worrying about recording it, but on the other hand, I didn’t want the visit to go by and for me to not have any photos of it!
So on the Sunday morning, when my parents stopped by before heading off back to Kent, I made a point of ushering everyone out into the garden for a quick photo shoot.
The thing is though, I nearly didn’t do it. Considering I’m a portrait photographer, I get really quite self-conscious asking my friends and family if I can take photos of them! I’m not even sure why. Maybe I don’t want to annoy anyone, pestering them to get in front of my camera. Maybe it’s that I love natural, candid shots so am a bit resistant to gathering people together in a more unnatural way!
Whatever the reason, I had to fight against it at the weekend, and just declare loudly that everyone had to get outside so some pictures could be taken. Steve took some of me, my parents and my children that I love. And I took some of just my parents to add to my slowly growing collection (I realised a few months back that I don’t have that many photos of my parents together so have been working to change that whenever I get the chance!).
These are a few of the resulting photos of my parents.
These are photos I will cherish in years to come because, despite the situation being slightly posed and unnatural, the photos themselves are so beautifully natural.
My mum in particular ‘gets’ my style of photography and knows that what I love is photos that show genuine expression and that reflect people’s personalities and relationships. And that’s what these photos are to me. They just reflect my parents perfectly.
No fake camera smiles here, just my Dad so clearly still in love with his wife, and my Mum bursting out laughing at something he’d just said that was every so slightly inappropriate. This is my parents! This is what I’ll want to remember in years to come.
So, if you ever want to snap a few photos of someone you love, but feel shy, or nervous, or like it’s just not worth the hassle of getting people to move to a suitable location, please just do it anyway.
You’ll never regret the photos you do take, but you may very well regret the ones you don’t take.
So don’t over think things, just take your camera, take a deep breath, take charge, and take the damn photo!
Oh, and while you’re at it, jump in a few photos yourself too, as much as you want photos of the people you love, know that they will want the photos of you too.