Extended-family sessions can seem overwhelming when I first arrive and have over a dozen names to memorise in the space of an hour. But they are so rewarding! I've enjoyed every extended-family session I've ever shot because I love that a whole family makes the effort to get together to document one of the most precious things in life; the love, strength and beauty of being a family. It gives the smaller family groups a chance for their family portrait too & I enjoy finding out who is the joker of the family, how the cousins love being together and how proud the parents are of their tribe.
I learnt early on that it is just about near impossible to get that 'perfect' shot of the whole collective family. Between parents trying to maintain the attention of their kids, to kids trying to entertain each other, to the 'blinker' in the family! So I embrace all family sessions with the idea that while I want to capture the moment perfectly, sometimes the moment is beautifully imperfect anyway.
It was an absolute privilege to document the Geerlofs family last month out at Dolamore Park. Some came from far away for the shoot & it was a pleasure to be a part of their weekend. By the end of the shoot I just about knew everyone's names too! And I had quite a few photography conversations because it turns out there's a few keen photographers in the family!
How cute is Ayla! Those big blue eyes!
I love that cheeky wee grin Lachlan!
And I love it when family means including Lisa the exchange student!
I've shot at Dolamore Park a number of times now & it never gets boring. There's so much variety in one place & the place is even more stunning in spring!
Thank you Geerlofs for having me take these portraits for you & a special thanks to Lisa for thinking of me when you decided family portraits would be a perfect gift for your parents! xxx