Preserving Memories Not Perfection | Minneapolis Family Photography

mother being hugged by her three girls

Whether in family, maternity, or newborn photography sessions, my goal for you as your photographer is to preserve memories. To me, the messiness of family is beautiful. The runny noses of a toddler, untamed curls of a preschooler, the incredible energy and motion of every 4 year old, and the quirky smiles of a toothless 7 year old are priceless. The many facets of motherhood: the unconditional love, the comfort, the joy, and yes even the chaos, and exhaustion are also filled with beauty. One step further, I also see motherhood as incredibly powerful. A woman’s body that produces life, nurtures little humans, and is full of comfort is also, to me, incredible! As a mom of girls who are now getting older, I also recognize that these things are not permanent. In fact, they are fleeting and the details they represent can be easily forgotten. I recognize how much I have changed both physically and emotionally as I get older. Our bodies change throughout our lives and, to me, the softness of our bodies during our pregnancies and early motherhood are to be celebrated because they reflect creativity, tenderness, power, strength, and love.

All of these things being said, I face a struggle time and time again with many clients who are moms. They seem to carry this burden of shame regarding their bodies. Body image for so many women is such a struggle. I won’t go into how society, fueled by social media contributes to these negative perceptions, but I will talk about how we can turn these pressures, stereotypes, and distorted ideas on their head. Much of it lies in how we see ourselves and others. What if we, instead of hiding our bodies, or desiring them changed in a photograph or by a certain pose or, dare I say photoshop, we instead celebrated what they truly are? What if we decided that every wrinkle, every curve, every aspect of who we truly are is beautiful and worthy of being deemed art? What if we looked at a photograph of ourselves and we praised the love we saw for our children, the strength of our arms around our babies, the softness of our touch toward our tween, the joy in our eyes as we are surrounded by the chaotic energy of our toddlers, the way that our husbands look at us in awe, or the way our little boys hold onto us like they never want to let go? These are precious moments beyond measure! When our kids look back on these types of images, they are not going to analyze mom’s body type, the size of her stomach or the wrinkles forming around her eyes, they are going to think about how beautiful she is because she loved them so much!

This is what I promise you in your photography sessions: beautiful, joyful, authentic, emotive photographs that illustrate the beauty of being a mom and a family. I am not here to make you look “perfect” or pose you in a certain way that makes you look thinner, all of those desires need to be set aside, left at the door, and thrown out the window!

So, dear mom, embrace who you are. See your strength as you multi-task a million things for your family every day. See your beauty as a source of life, love, comfort, and wisdom for the little and big people who are in your lives. Approach your session with excitement as you are styled in a beautiful dress that allows you to run, cuddle, and love on your kiddos. Focus on the experience of your session as you snuggle with your newborn and breathe in their newborn scent! Hold your kids tight as they wiggle and squirm in your arms and just let out a big laugh about it all! As your hair blows in the wind and your toddler holds it tight as they give you a big kiss, let go of whether or not it is messy, and anticipate how beautiful that image will be of those dimpled hands and the joy in your eyes as you take it all in. This is what is beautiful. This is the art of your memories.