Presenting… my new *real* family photography website!
The inspiration behind *real* family photography
A year ago I on was on a plane returning home after one of the best weekends of my life. My sister and brother and I met up in Savannah just to play and be together. It was an agenda-less type trip us adults don’t often do…
We laughed until our tummies hurts, we wandered through old streets and drank too many fancy coffees. We played monkey in the middle on the beach. We allowed ourselves to get spooked on a Savannah Ghost tour (it’s the most haunted city in America they say). We were as carefree as kids, but as adults we could indulge in as many midnight snacks as we wanted. In fact we refer to that weekend as YOLO! (I must admit I didn’t even know what they meant before the trip!)
One late night we were leaning over the wall at a rooftop bar overlooking the river. Each of us gazed at the water but we were talking to each other. We talked about who could remember what about childhood and we ended up comparing our earliest memories. You know, those ones you have to reach for, in which the slight slant in the driveway is a massive hill. Being staggered in age it was interesting to compare.
My brother told me that his very first memory was me being born. My breath stopped for a moment.
I was so touched. But it was hard to say why exactly. Is that sweet? Is that natural considering it probably disturbed his world a bit?
It also made me wish I could remember what my family was like when I was born. Was that when my dad had the early 80’s mustache? And my mom’s hair permed? My mom said she was excited to have a little girl but I wish I could remember, like my brother did, what it was like and how the family changed. There are some photos of course, and I’m glad to have them. But they are line ups on the couch, or if they are in action they might be dark, distant or blurry. I treasure them, but doing what I do today I know what is possible.
A couple of my favorite couch line ups from when I was little.
I am one of 5 kids and as you can imagine there was an ever-changing network of dynamics between us; I love photos of us looking at each other. In my shoots I get one photo of everyone together with no one even aware of the camera. I’d give anything to have something like this from my childhood.
I create for others what I wish I had: real family photography. Photos of the ever changing dynamics between each person of the family. Photos of us in our home, surrounded by the toys, the furniture and the affection that was commonplace to us then. I want to feel what my parents felt when they held me as an infant. I want to feel the wonder, the gratitude and even the exhaustion of their state of parenthood. I want to be in awe of how young, how beautiful, and maybe even how overwhelmed they were.
As a person running a business I always ensure my parents are over the moon about their photos, but I don’t only have them in mind. I’m thinking about what the kids will want once they are grown. What will they cherish? What images will act as a time machine taking them back to their childhood? What images will show them a time they can’t remember at all?
All this was on my heart on that flight home from my family visit. And that was the moment I decided I needed to make these videos.
Because I just don’t know how else to tell you:
An album of real family photos will become your most cherished possession.
And it will mean *even more* to you a decade from now.
And it will mean *even more* to your kids when they are grown.
And it will mean *even more* to their kids when you are gone.
Do you believe me when I tell you that together, we can create art with infinite meaning? “Priceless” doesn’t even begin to describe it…
Baby’s First Year by Maureen Cotton from Maureen Cotton Photography on Vimeo.
Field Trip Family Photo Shoot by Maureen Cotton from Maureen Cotton Photography on Vimeo.
And then there were 5… Perhaps the only time all of us were in one frame and in focus.