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The Family Narrative Part One

Earlier this month, I was invited to teach at the Family Narrative, a retreat for family photographers in New Orleans. It was my first time teaching a group of talented peers, and it was both humbling and rewarding. Little did I realize that I would walk away feeling inspired by this diverse group of women, who came from all over the country. As self-employed artists we live in our own bubble in spite of our many social media connections. There is no substitute for real life connections, and the boss ladies of TFN created this beautiful, intimate space that successfully filled that void. Thank you Annemie, Meghan, Posy and Kate! Most of us left feeling a renewed sense of belonging, with ideas that we can bring back into our businesses.

I taught a live family session on the streets of New Orleans which was a first for me. Typically when I do family sessions, I tend to plan ahead to ensure a fair amount of success. With children and moving parts, there are always things that happen organically and one has to be ready for it. Despite my type-A leanings, I didn’t have an opportunity to location scout ahead of time. Then, when demo time came, one of the children in the model family turned out to be sick. In so many ways, it was much like the challenges that we as family photographers experience in real life. In that imperfection, there are the make-it-work moments where you go with all of what you have to capture the beauty of the real-life humans in front of you. Ultimately, I love capturing moments – happy or sad – and was grateful for this opportunity to do so. My session was with a lovely local family from New Orleans, the parents and their three children. I am grateful to that family, and to the receptive and engaged attendees of the class. I wanted to give a shout out to Tim Ryugo of Kodak film for sponsoring the film which was also provided to the participants. And a huge thank you to Albany of Richard Film Lab who sponsored the film processing and scans.

The images below were created with a Contax 645 Medium Format Camera and Kodak Portra 160 and 400.

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