It would be the very first time that my entire family would be together in one place at one time. A family portrait would definitely be in order, and I knew I wanted my friend Rich Chapman to shoot it.
It’s weird to go from photographer to subject. I couldn’t leave the photographer in me behind, so I moved the furniture, worked on the window light and “helped” Rich get the groupings down.
With almost 30 people, it was chaos. But then again, my family is always chaos. Even when there are only a few of us!
As we grouped together, and re-grouped, and re-grouped again, I realized how important these portraits would be to each person in them.
Mom and dad with us, five daughters; the “baby” Nickey in her 30s, the rest in our 40s.
The grandkids with mom and dad.
Aunt Char and Uncle Jack.
My dear Rick and our kids.
This record of family was the highlight of a rather challenging 2011. I felt triumphant. Joyful. A little melancholy. And so grateful to have it come together.
And not just because it’s going to look phenomenal in a 40×30 canvas on mom and dad’s wall, but because it is our family’s story of a Christmas celebrated together in laughter and happiness.
And now, it can be remembered forever.