I am a documentary photographer. Not everyone knows what that exactly entails in the context of families but it is pretty simple. Much like a documentary photographer who objectively photographs a project he/she is working on, I do the same with families and their Day in the Life sessions – with as little bias as possible. In a class (The Documentary Approach) that I co-instruct over at Click Photo School, we discuss at lengths about the Code of Ethics of photojournalism and what it means to apply it to our own lives and families that we work with. The ultimate ideal for us as documentary photographers is to find a way to gain trust, while not influencing behaviour in anyway.
That said, we don’t live in a vacuum and the mere presence of a stranger in a family’s life WILL cause even the smallest ripple effect.
Case in point, this note, sent to me at the end of the day after spending 10 hours with them.
“Thank you for an amazing day. Both Andre and I both said to each other at the end of the day that we actually had one of the best summery days of the whole summer. You cast a magical relaxed spell on our kids!”
While it is not my intention to influence their behaviour or photograph only magical moments (yes, they did have some tears!), I am glad that this experience of their Day in the Life felt like a magical one. Truthfully, I had little to do with the magic making. Summer days in Vancouver are pretty special in their own right, especially if you can go from picking huckleberries and roasting marshmellows at your cabin in the mountains to enjoying the warm sand and lapping ocean waves at sea level all in one day. Katie & Andre, thank you so much for having me again for this instalment of your sky to sea adventure!
Here is their Day in the Life slideshow. Also, here is a throwback to Katie & Andre’s session from two years ago.
Felicia is a Vancouver Documentary Photographer who breaks the mold and expectations of traditional family portraiture. She takes the good with the bad, and leaves judgement at the door, and captures everyday life just as she sees it. Contact her to find your family’s edition of life story for your visual diary! To follow more of Felicia’s work, connect over at @feliciachangphoto on Instagram.