The usual suspects

The power of a picture is pretty amazing. When we glance at an old photo a rush of emotions washes over us. When my friend and studio manager Lisa suggested we get all our children together for this session I loved the idea. These kids having been playing together for years, many since they were babies. We are always taking phone photos in the backyard. I have even brought my professional camera to parties. I have taken portraits of each of these children with their families or siblings. But I had never done a studio or formal portrait of them as friends. I thought about how fun it would be and immediately starting getting ideas about what to do and how to work with them. 

Then out of nowhere I remembered a photo from my own childhood. It was of the group of us that always played together. We didn't stay in touch over the years after we moved into adulthood, but I vividly remembered this photo and how much it represented what those years of my childhood were all about...my friends. We played Star Wars together. Spent hours outside running and concocting all kinds of games. Endless hours riding bikes, running, and all of it spent in the freedom of our imaginations. Playing outside until someone called us in for dinner. 

I spent a long time looking through all the photo albums I had. Hoping beyond hope that this wasn't an image that had gotten lost. I found it!! There we all were. I am so grateful that someone had printed this image! (My plug here for the printed image instead of one that would live in some digital format to be lost as technology changed.) I put my hands on this and just stared. Some serious and others smiling. There I am holding a turtle. How funny that my own daughter in the images from this session is holding her guinea pig. I didn't even realize that until after our session. We both have our love of animals included in the portrait. I love it! (: 

I think that many years from now as this group gets older they will be so grateful to have this immortalized. For them to see the joy they had in each other as friends. To remind them of all the time they spent playing together. 

And of course, this is my own take on the group. I wanted to play with them. Letting some of the images be very serious and others goofy, just like they are! I loved that they got dressed up and look like movie mobsters. A tip of the cap to that film noir genre that I love. And that then, of course, they laughed until they fell over. 

This is what life is all about. The good times. The moments that we can look back on with fondness and realize that the most important thing we can do in life is enjoy it. May these images take you back to something wonderful from your childhood. Or maybe they inspire you to call your friends and do something fabulous. Or maybe you want to gather your own children and their friends and have them come to the studio to hang out with me. If so email me jen@jendeanphoto.com or call my 207-318-0467. I can't wait to meet them!

In Dreams - Jen