Hello, my name is Joseph… sounds like a beginning to one of the _Anonymous meetings… I have been privileged to enter video/photography/memory capturing industry from mid 90s. Over the years, while being primarily a wedding photographer, I have seen the start of many families. However, it was the incorporation in family photography where I began to see the growth of family. In high school, also the time when I first entered the industry as an assistant, someone once said, “read the last chapter in the book first and then start from the beginning, this way you know where the story goes”. Naturally, for any school-related assignment, I stayed with that tactic, however in life, it doesn’t work like that. Perhaps it is one of the hardest things in life, to see the story unrevealing right in front of you…
About five years ago, a young boy, Dillian, came with his father for a newborn session. Unlike the ideal age of under-two-weeks, Dillian was 3 weeks young. Nonetheless, he mastered every pose, every angle. Meeting these two gentlemen 🙂 was also cultural education, where mommies do not leave the house for the first month and have family and friends attend their needs. I might have some details off, but it is a pretty cool tradition. As a parent of four kids, going through 4 deliveries, mommy definitely can use the time to rest and recuperate from the overall experience.
Creative freedom was the name of the game, and we chose to put Dillian with Teddy bears & The Boat as props.
Angel and Derek, signed up for watch me grow plan, where they brought their super model back every 3-4 months and we captured the milestones that he was going through his first year.
At three Months-Session, the milestone in tummy-time.
Family pictures aren’t typical at milestones sessions, however, when you look like a million bucks each, who are we to say no to three million 🙂
The six Month Milestone, is baby sitting, Parents provided the outfits, we discussed the theme and Dillan rocked yet another session. We typically incorporate the season and current holidays in our watch-me-grow sessions. His 6 month session was around the time of Christmas/New Year and Santa was the perfect addition to the set.
For the 9 Months Session, we decided to revisit previous set and show how Dillian has grown. Compare it to the newborn 😉
Since being a little newborn, his look, his closeups always stood out as in “feed me information, I want to learn the world”
Unlike the moon before, this time, we decided to go with the hot air balloon. It’s a tough prop to use, because it is somewhat enclosed and if the child has any degree of stranger-danger/separation anxiety, a normal part of growing up, this prop will not work; Dillian, has other plans and was giggling throughout this set 🙂
For the first birthday, We also photographed his party and the studio session. It was fun to see how his interaction in a different environment.
Over this time, we established a very pleasant relationship with his parents. Like many of our watch-me-grow clients, we thought after Dillan turns one and ‘graduates’ we won’t see him. It was a pleasant surprise to get an email for his next session…
As Chinese New Year came around, we met again 🙂
He loved the hot air balloon so much that we did another variation of it. It would be cool to do an an outdoor Hot Air Baloon… hint hint… We’ll see what the future holds.
As spring started coming around, we went to Prospect Park | We kind of were semi-out of luck, it was a beautiful day but cold. Unfortunately, because of the schedule and weather, this was the only we day we could have done the session. Nonetheless, the family were all game, ready to go and we got a nice gallery of images.
The next logical (lol) session after spring, is summer. So we went to the Boardwalk
I love he colors in the sky, the carousel, and the interaction between mom and her big(er)-little boy
When Dillian was 4, he came back to us for another fun shoot. We had to work a little harder this time, to bring out his personality, but our efforts were successful. Variation of Boy’s Garden, is a popular neutral setup that can be applied to nearly any age of the child and would match many outfits.
Classic Cars, is another fan favorite, it allows to incorporate different types of cars, let the child play with them and doesn’t limit the cartoon cars (which I happen to love, by the way).
And then, there’s simple, basic portrait setups, that add a little bit of flavor to already great set of images
Roughly a month ago, Derek reached out to us for another session, this time we chose to go to Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass. DUMBO is a very special place. On one hand, going there during the weekend, feels like a wedding convention with no room to maneuver, on the other hand, it offers variety of scenes just turning left/right or even tilting the camera.
This shot is one of my favorite shots from this session. Thinking back that I know this kid since he was three weeks old, now he is 5 YEARS OLD… Time flew, he is looking into the future, to see what obstacles it’ll bring and how we will attack them.
It has been a blessfull five years of knowing this family, working with this family and watching them grow. It is an honor and a privilege to be one of the THOUSANDS of photographers in NYC to be chosen as their family photographer. We hope to be here for many more years to come.