Family is the most important thing in most of our lives since gives one a sense of belonging and importance in the society. Having been on location for the last ten years in Kahawa West, we have forged relationships with a diverse range of families, from established, young, single parents, future families (Oh boy don’t we love baby bumps and birthdays!) in our studio.
Over the years, we have seen drastic changes in families that call for photoshoots together. The ability to celebrate every milestone with a professional photographer has been the reason some of them have been able to outgrow turmoil happily.
“……memories stand in a lot of decisions we make in our home even through hard times. While one may be at the edge due to the actions of the other, there are memories that remind us of good times we have had and times when the mutual well-being was visibly of interest from all sides. For us this is with the portraits on the walls from our engagement to our first child all the way to today…..” Karen and Njogu – among our favorite young couples at the studio – narrate.
It may look negligible a thing, or cliché to have a photographer come to your home to take photos. After all ‘He will just press a button’. However, truth be told, some families have been saved from a breakdown by good photos, others only have memories of their significant others in celebrating their family (even friends) milestones. A professional photographer engaging any person is beneficial in terms of the image they tend to receive from you and that which you let them have on the topic at hand—family. As heard from another couple as I interacted with them to establish the objective of their photo-shoot, Marya, a long-time client of mine opened up and said:
“Every session is more therapeutic than the previous [one], we find ourselves bonding and falling in love all over again with ourselves in the photos and as we pose, some of the photos might not make it to the selection but still they are worth the energy used on them. I am a firm believer that a family that shoots together stays together…”
All that has been said was aiming towards a single point: There is no substitute to a good family portrait. The confidence it gives the young and the pride it gives the old. Memories stored in good family photos are more like wealth, rich in culture and expression and a show of love in terms of investing time and money in your loved ones. One can tell the sense and extent of unity in any family by looking at their photos, those who take photos together more often tend to be open to one another and do things together because they enjoy and feel confident around each other. The opposite is quite true for families that do not want or simply don’t spare the time to document their moments and time with one another.
A client once asked me my preference between prints and digital copies. I simply told him I myself hire a photographer every now and then to take photos of my family after which I print professionally and hang them on the wall for all of us to see and interact with. While one may have any size and number of computerized equipment to view their photos on, technological mishaps are a norm and losing or damaging your equipment does occur every now and then. The simplicity offered by professional prints is beyond anything else one can do with their portraits. Your child does not have to key in a password into a device or power it up to feel the comfort brought about by family photos.
However, with the rise of modern technology, one does not have to be afraid of losing their photos as there are numerous storage facilities; some of which do not charge their clients a dime to use. After a photo has been taken and a print done, one can then proceed to uploading the soft copy on to the facility of their choice for future use. A ‘link’ – an address to the online storage facility – is then shared amongst family members in order for them to have access to the content.
By Gad Mwangi