Photographing Across Generations - Grandparents and their grandkids

As a parent and photographer, I am always wanting to capture the connections between people. I love seeing where we "came from" and who we're connected to. So, it's only natural that I'd bring my "big" camera on our near-weekly visits to the grandparents and attempt some documentary photography across generations.

As my children have grown bigger and louder, these visits to the grandparents have also evolved. We used to all sit in the living room and stare adoringly at the cute baby on the blanket. Well, now those three babies are running and screeching throughout the house and the grandparents tire out very quickly.

I took the opportunity one recent trip to capture what my children find to do in this "non child-friendly" environment. Someday in the future when my children have forgoten how they used to fit inside a kitchen cabinet, I can drag out the photo album to remind just how small they used to be.

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Do you wish you had more photos of you with your grandparents?

Wouldn't you like to create photos of your own children with their grandparents?

I wish I had more photos of my grandparents and of myself with them. So, if you're like me, let's grab coffee and chat about how we can honestly capture on camera the multi-generations in your own family.

Let's Talk

Portraits of Childhood - Capturing the best photos of children's personalities

I absolutely love when I can capture close-up portraits of children. Some children are nervous with a camera in their face while other children use this chance to goof off. I happen to have both kinds of children in my own family.

My oldest and youngest love attention and really love seeing their face on the back of the camera. My middle guy is the quieter one; he lets me capture photos of him absorbed in an activity but does not usually sit for a formal portrait.

When I do have the opportunity to take some "formal" portraits of children, I usually ask them a silly question or suggest a goofy scenario. This lights up their imagination and it just shines through their eyes and face. Sometimes I'll even ask them to show me all sorts of kinds of faces, from excited to sad, scared to happy. In the photo below, I asked my girl to show me a few "excited" faces.

 A young girl making a silly face in her photography portrait.

In this photo, I simply asked my boy to show me several "faces" including his crying face. I really liked the balance with the rain cloud on the pillow behind him.

 A black and white portrait of a boy pretending to cry.

Sometimes when I create a portrait of a child, I don't even need to capture their entire face to really get their personality. I don't even know what my little guy is doing in this photo, but I love the mystery.

 A close up photo of just the eyes of a preschool boy.

Portrait photography needs two vital components: an awesome personality and great light. The personality part is a natural for kids. They can't help but be their awesome selves. The great light is also found almost anywhere, including a hallway (lower left photo) or a bathroom (lower right photo). I drive my family crazy sometimes when we're out walking and I just stop. It's usually because I see an interesting light pattern on the ground and I must know what created it. 

 Portrait photography of a young boy makes great use of shadows.
 Find the great light first when making portraits. This can even be in bathrooms.
 Getting great light is important for beautiful photos of children in Claremont.

Portraits also don't always need to be made sitting down. Some of my favorite portraits of my own children are the quick action shots that I have to nail in a split-second such as when he's running towards me in a tiny tunnel or swinging in a hammock or even taking an evening walk through The Claremont Colleges.

 Portrait photo using great use of light and composition.
 Outdoor portrait child photography in California.
 Scripps College is a great place for family photos in Claremont.

Childhood portraits are such a natural component of my family lifestyle sessions. I love to tell the story of childhood from the point of view of these little humans. Candid and formal images are necessary to fully tell that story. 

Are you ready to capture your children's story?

Let's talk!

Underwater Photography - A before and after comparision

Underwater photography relies heavily on post-editing. No matter the camera - whether I use my fancy DSLR with underwater housing or my GoPro - the image that is straight out of the camera (SOOC) is never perfect. Cameras just can't capture the contrast and detail that a human eye can see. So, I always spend a good amount of time with each photo in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop pulling out those important details. Here is one of my latest underwater photos. I thought everyone might want to see the difference between a SOOC image and the final edited image.

THE FINAL IMAGE

(After getting edited in Lightroom and Photoshop)

 Underwater photography of children in Claremont, CA

BEFORE

Straight out of the Camera (GoPro Hero 5)

My settings: ISO 100, 3mm (ultra wide angle), f/2.8, 1/2500 sec

 
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Underwater photography is really an exciting activity. I have the honor of capturing children completely absorbed in their own activities and everything takes on a bit of magic. How often do we get to fly, float and spin upside down?

Do you have access to a pool and want to chat about creating totally unique underwater photos for your own family?

Your family is coming for the holidays. It's time for family pictures!

The grandparents are coming for the holidays! Now is the time to finally capture photographs of Papa reading books or Grammy baking cookies with the grandkids. Your children will absolutely love looking back on those images that their growing brains have already forgotten. You'll also love having the family photos that show the love between your parents and your children.

Let's talk about how you and I can capture those family pictures this holiday season.

 An in home lifestyle session with a grandmother and granddaughter in Claremont and Glendora with Erica Faith Photography.

I remember during one Thanksgiving trip to see my grandmother. We called her Grandma Rabbit because of my brother's obsession with Winnie the Pooh (it's a long story). Anyway, I remember baking a cake with her. I remember the oval wooden table that had seen decades of use. I remember her teaching me how to make a pretty design on the cake with a spatula. What I don't have is any photograph of her and me together. I would give almost anything to see a photo of the two of us together.

 A fun lifestyle photo session with grandparents and their grandchildren in Southern California with Erica Faith Photography.

What goes through your heart when the parents that held you as a newborn, now hold your own children? Do you imagine what it must have been like for them so many years ago? Do you compare the wisdom and experience they have learned through their lives with the raw potential of the tiny baby in their arms?

 Capture photographs of grandparents and grandchildren with a photo session in Claremont and Glendora with Erica Faith Photography.

Ready to put these memories on paper? Let's talk. It's time to get your parents and your children in the same frame. 

An adorable family session at the Horsethief Canyon Park in San Dimas

I've shared a few of these images elsewhere, but I wanted to share all of my favorites. I got to meet the lovely Candice a few months ago when I asked on a local photographer's facebook group if anyone wanted to swap family sessions. Candice quickly volunteered and we got to planning. She took some beautiful photos of my family and I was excited (and nervous) to swap places. Well, her family is just so gorgeous and sweet that every frame was a keeper. So, here's my massive share. I hope you enjoy your photos Candice! I'll be your photographer anytime!