Five Photo Resolutions for Mothers in the New Year

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While spending the holidays at my childhood home, I came across our old family photo albums. With five siblings, you can imagine how many albums my family has accumulated over the years. Looking through all the pictures, I couldn’t help but think about how I photograph my own family, so in the new year I wanted to share some of my own photo resolutions. 

1. Print your images. 

Get your photos off your phone, whether it’s printing an album or a couple of pictures every now and then. Nowadays there are so many wonderful apps and mobile subscriptions that make it very easy to print your photos. Take advantage of all those resources! Going through my own photos, after the mid-2000s when the world began switching to digital, there’s a distinct lack of printed photos. Can you believe I only have one of our wedding photos printed?! And that was seven years ago. I really need to get on that! 

A is very into books right now. Maybe in the future this love for reading will continue to grow or maybe she’ll transition to something else. Either way, I’ll have this image and remember how much she loved reading and all the funny positions she’d get into to get comfy while she read.

2. Embrace the imperfect, candid moments. 

As a photographer and in the age of social media, this is an especially hard one for me. If there’s bad lighting I usually won’t take a picture. If someone’s hair is out of place, I’ll take another photo. But in 2022, let’s enjoy those candid, unabashed moments. When I look back at my childhood photos, those are the types of photos I love the most. There’s random pictures my mother took when no one was paying attention when we were just having fun and enjoying ourselves. Don’t just take pictures for the ‘gram; take them to make those memories last.  

This was a dark spot surrounded by trees that I would have normally passed up on taking a picture, but I love that my niece, A, didn’t care and took a picture with her film camera of her sister, N, anyway.

3. Photograph the “ordinary” moments.

Some of my favorite photos of my family are of them just hanging out. It triggers those long-forgotten memories of what life was like back then.  Capture the walk to school, your kids on the playground, your spouse coming home from work, etc. Go ahead and capture those milestones, but don’t forget those sweet moments in between.

This is a photo of my brother getting a last minute haircut from my sister-in-law before I took their family picture. I love this little glimpse of their life and A dilligently sweeping up after her mom.

4. Get in front of the camera. 

I love taking photographs of people, but that usually means I’m nowhere to be seen in photos. Did you even go on that trip if you’re not in any of the photos? I know for my mom friends, many of them have endless pictures of their family members, but so few of themselves in these moments. Challenge your spouse and, especially, your children to take photos of you. As a bonus, you get to see how they view you and the world. Plus, it gives a unique and well-rounded feel to your family’s photos.

Another photograph on film by A of me and her sister, N. The funny thing about this picture is I hadn’t realized how tall N had gotten until I saw her height in relation to mine. She had a big growth spurt during Covid and it was jarring the first time I saw her after a year and a half of being away.

5. Don’t take pictures. 

Yep. I said it. My mother was a kindergarten teacher, and sometimes she’d have me photograph the kids during graduation. One thing I remember vividly is all the parents with their cameras out, missing the silly and unexpected things the kids would do. Sometimes, it’s better to live in the moment and enjoy the experience rather than capture it in a photo. So, if you’re the person who’s constantly taking pictures, take a step back, relax, and soak in the memories. 

I hope this post inspires you in the new year.  Get those cameras out (or put them away) and enjoy every bit of this new year to come. 

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