In my last blog post, I talked about the idea of it's how it feels, not how it looks.
Today I want to go into a little more detail, because I know you want the visual results.
I know you want to take better photos of your kids - photos that capture the beauty of the moment as you experienced it. Photos that you're excited to share with your friends, whether it's on Facebook or Instagram, via email or, imagine this, in beautiful albums and on the walls of your home.
So, the question is: How is focusing on how it feels going to get you these results?
When you focus on how it feels, not how it looks, you will find that your concept of the moments that are worth capturing immediately expands. It is no longer about the "picture perfect" moment, when your kids are smiling and looking at the camera.
It's so much more than that.
It's their reaction to a new food you tried to give them at breakfast. It's the tea party they set up in the living room using all the sofa cushions to make a table and chairs, and their favorite red cape as a tea cloth. It's your child and their best friend whispering and giggling together at the playground.
It's also the mixed look of pride and surprise as your toddler conquers the stairs in your house. It's the baby taking a giant yawn before setting down to sleep. It's your older child reading to a younger sibling for the very first time.
It's so many moments daily that make up a life - your life.
It's the moments that can be easily forgotten or overlooked in the daily grind of diapers and feedings, tantrums and power struggles, homework and sibling conflicts, laundry and dishes.
Yes, we know that everyday parenting is filled with moments we'd rather forget too.
But when you use photography to help you let go of the bad moments and focus on all the positive moments, you can find more confidence and joy in the day-to-day experience of being a parent. Instead of dwelling on what didn’t go well, you’ll be reminded of what did. Instead of feeling guilty about areas where you could be doing better, you’ll be able to see that, overall, you are doing a great job, and that everything is going to be ok.
The amazing thing here is that the process feeds itself. Once you find that confidence and joy daily, that feeling will provide the fuel you need to start taking better photos that really capture the moments you love experiencing with your kids.
With a strong emotional foundation based on who you are as a parent and photos that better reflect the moments you experience and want to remember, you'll be motivated and inspired to learn more creative and technical approaches.
With some success under your belt with your iPhone photos, you'll finally find it worthwhile to take out your DSLR and learn how to get the most out of it.
And with photos that you love, you'll also have built up the momentum and impetus to organize, backup, edit and share them - online, in beautiful slideshows and albums, and on the walls of your home.
You'll get the visual results that you want.
But you'll also get these unexpected benefits:
- more joy and confidence in your life daily as a parent - and less guilt that you are not spending enough "quality time" with your kids
- the means to leverage the time you do have with your kids, even if it is not as much time as you would like
- the ability to use your camera to be more in the moment and closer to your kids, rather than having your camera ruin the moment and come between you and your kids
- a quick and easy medium to express your love for your kids and share that love with friends and family
- a support network that experiences a strengthened bond between you and your kids through your photos
- a means of focusing on what is good in your life - a practice of gratitude that increases your sense of satisfaction and well-being
- the increased confidence your kids will feel as they develop a sense of their own story through your photos
- peace of mind knowing that no matter what happens, your family's story will endure for generations to come
In my next blog post, let's look together at what might be getting in your way, preventing you from achieving the photos you dream of taking - and what you can do to work past it.