Guest post by Gwylan Goddard
So you’re expecting a baby…
And you know you’d really love to document this special time in your life. Whether it be to mark it with a maternity photo session or wait until baby arrives, here are a few reasons why you may choose a session at home. As a visual storyteller, I can’t emphasize enough how much meaning the photos taken at home will hold for you now and in the years to come.
1- No packing or travelling
An obvious reason to choose a session at home is that you don’t need to consider packing a bunch of outfit choices for the kids, snacks, toys, or whatever else they might need when you’re rushing off to a photo studio. When you’ve just brought a newborn home, sometimes the very last thing you feel like doing is heading out anywhere. You have created your little nest and you are just starting to get into your flow and routine of being a new parent. Stay home and there are no worries of getting anywhere or preparing much at all.
2- Go about your usual routine
Have your morning coffee. Breastfeed your new little one in the comfort of your favourite chair. Whatever it might be, in my experience the best home sessions are the ones where very little planning takes place, but where you go about your day-to-day things. You’d be surprised how full of surprises and wonderful moments your life is, and how these come out especially when you are in a place of comfort and familiarity. Loosely “planning” activities that you already enjoy doing together, like cozying up with a good book or cooking together mean you will still get something out of your day.
Your family pictures at home will represent you better than any posed studio portrait ever will. You will wear your usual comfy clothes, you will be hanging out in the rooms where you have had many a conversation, shed many a tear, gotten angry, or been fearful. As you embark on this new journey with a new baby, your pictures will showcase the beautiful moments of nurturing your child: everything from feeding to changing and all of the loving cuddles and kisses in between. Your photos will be filled with meaning and context since most of your memories happen here!
4- Accommodate everyone
Maybe this is baby number two or three on the way, and the idea of carting off the whole family to a studio is one of sheer anxiety. Don’t stress- here’s a really good reason to stay at home. You can include the variety of activities and hobbies that all of your family members are involved in. Also, lots of studios don’t allow pets to join in on the photo session, but at home the obvious reality is that any pet can be part of the shoot!
5- Rain? Who cares!
No need to reschedule if it rains, your home is your cozy shelter from the world. Sometimes backyard or park play is part of these shoots, and it will be up to you if you want to venture out with rain boots and all, but your plans are not squashed by mother nature.
6- Your kids will thank you
Your home right now might not fit all of your ideals, which is often why people refrain from booking sessions at home. Each and every one of us has a list in our minds of the things we’d like to do, to fix, to improve upon. Perhaps we even have plans to move soon, upgrade, or whatever it might be. But your kids are living life with you now, right where you are. As they grow up and look back on old photographs, they will be pleased to see the old kitchen cupboard that they used to pull all the pots out of as a toddler, their old bedroom, the dog you had at the time. These things don’t all last forever, but it doesn’t mean they matter any less. Those changes you hope to make may not happen right away, and that’s okay because life is busy and messy. These are important pieces of their history, and yours. Give your kids the gift of documenting life as it is in your current, wonderful, love-filled home.
Gwylan is the photographer behind the lens at Gwylan Goddard Photography. She works exclusively on location in your home to create the most authentic pictures of you and your family. A native Montrealer, she loves to spend hours working in her garden, practicing yoga, or enjoying a cup of tea or glass of white wine with her husband and kitty cuddled up close.
Her services include two-hour lifestyle sessions for maternity, new baby, or family portraits in the home, as well as half and full day documentary storytelling sessions that include a book of memories. She believes that photographs look best in print, creating tangible memories for you to pass on to your children and grandchildren.