What is Family Documentary Photography?

Documentary family photography is photography that captures you in your life as you are. It’s not matching outfits and silly prompts. It’s raw, it’s real life, and it’s finding beauty in the chaos. It’s more than just a record of what you did – it’s preservation of what that felt like.

Anyone can take beautiful photos of your family for the Christmas card. I want to show you how you love and how you are loved.

Read more about my “why” here.

Session Types

Birth Photography

I take a limited number of birth commissions a year. Due to my commitment to weddings during the year, as of right now birth commissions are only available for due dates between January and March. 

Birth photography is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever done. Birth allows me to show your child how loved and wanted they were. There’s so much emotion and anticipation and there’s nothing more precious than capturing the exact moment you get to meet your child for the first time. I will be with you for 6-8 hours, arriving before the baby is born, photographing the birth, and staying to capture those first few hours with your brand new little one!

Birth photography starts at $1,500

Documentary Portrait Session

Documentary portrait sessions are designed for families that aren’t ready for a true day in the life session. This is best for families with one small child who isn’t mobile yet. In these sessions we will take a few “posed” portraits as a family and then capture you in your natural environment loving on each other. This is a much more natural alternative to the traditional newborn session- focusing instead on your connection, showing the love in the exhaustion of keeping this new life alive and thriving!

This session is also available to other families, but families with older children and/or multiple children are best served by Night in the Life or Day in the Life sessions!

Documentary portrait sessions last 1-2 hours and start at $300 – average investment is between $600-$1,000.

A Night in the Life

“A Night in the Life” is the perfect session for families with children of any age. They last 4-6 hours and usually start when the kids get home from school or parents get home from work and go until bedtime. There is so much love and beauty in the messy chaos of an ordinary evening. Your story deserves to be preserved authentically.

“A Night in the Life” sessions start at $600. Average investment is between $1,000 and $1,500.

A Day in the Life

“Day in the Life” sessions capture a full day with your family. There for 10-12 hours I’m able to capture it all— the full routine! Trips to the store, the playground, playing pretend, making dinner, bedtime, all of it!

“Day in the Life” sessions start at $1,000. Average investment is $2,000+

THE PROCESS

Not only do I believe that these moments matter and are worth photographing, but I also feel very strongly that these photos deserve to exist beyond just social media and our electronic devices. Once your photos are completed we will get together for your ordering session where we will watch your slideshow, identify your favorite photos, and decide how best to preserve them. Canvasses, albums, and loose prints are all available as well as digital collections.

Session fees are for the time and talent of the photographer and are listed above in the description of each session type. Please contact me for a product guide and more information. I’m happy to help you choose the best session to fit your family and your budget!

FAQ

Why Family Photography?

Because real life matters. My business started in 2010 as a family photography business but I quickly became disenchanted by it. I didn’t find joy from bribing kids to smile for the “picture perfect” photo. It’s a stressful process. Parents have expectations of what they want the photos to look like, and children – especially young children – tend to have minimal patience for anything other than being themselves. It’s not particularly glamorous or fun for anyone involved.

A couple of years into my business I started photographing weddings and fell in love with all of the beauty and emotion of couples’ photography. As time went on, I grew both personally and as an artist and I discovered a love for nuance… the little moments, the small gestures, and I realized that I was doing it all wrong. Weddings aren’t just about the couple – they’re about their family and friends too. Every single person that’s invited to your wedding is someone who helped shape the person that you are. There’s an insane amount of love in one room. It became my mission to show people not just the love between them and their new spouse, but how loved they are by everyone in their lives.

It’s the most fulfilling thing in the world… and I knew it didn’t have to stop at weddings. In our short time on this beautiful planet, the thing that matters the most is connection. There’s nothing more beautiful to me than being able to give you tangible proof of the love in your life.

I want your kids to see these photos and not think back to the day that they posed for a stranger, bribed by whatever candy or snacks were on hand, wearing coordinating outfits in a place they’d never been before and never visited again. I want them to be able to look back and remember what it felt like to be youthful, happy and loved… as they are.

Which session is right for me?

It really depends on what you’re looking for! I am happy to talk with you about your family and what your goals are for the session. Not every session size is the right fit for every family. I’ve had sessions that felt way too chaotic and too short of a time frame and others that were significantly longer than they needed to be. I’m happy to help guide you towards what’s best for your family at this season of your life.

Do you offer traditional family portrait sessions?

The documentary portrait session is the closest thing to a traditional family portrait session that I offer. With those we’ll spend about 10-15 minutes on portraits and then depending on the age of your child(ren) we’ll either do a fun activity with the goal of getting great moments in a limited time frame or focus on candids in the home.

If you are looking for a traditional family portrait session I am happy to recommend you to one of my talented colleagues!

Do you offer discounts for repeat clients?

Absolutely! If I photographed your wedding or you are a loyal family client, all session fees are discounted by $100! I want to be your photographer for life!

Looking for my wedding photography? Click here.