Photographer's children syndrome

 I learned something the other day. I can NOT photograph my own children. I swear, it was worse than trying to herd cats. They were crazy, and goofy, and WHINY. Boy, were they whiny! I just wanted a couple of really great shots to update the photos on our walls. I am ashamed to say that it's been multiple years since we have had professional portraits taken and when I pull my camera out around my family, it's more for lifestyle, in-the-moment type photography. So, I picked out outfits, scouted out locations and got my minions all ready to head to Honeygo Park in White Marsh, Md. It took all of about 3.7 seconds in the car for the shoes to come off, the hairbow to come out and the whining to commence. I tried EVERYTHING. I begged, I pleaded, I bribed, I threatened. "Please just smile for ONE picture!" "If you don't stop and just sit still, I swear I will eat every single piece of Halloween candy you get!" Nothing worked. And then it hit me, if these WEREN'T my minions, how would I shoot them? I realized I was treating them as my children and NOT like someone I wanted to get a picture out of. So, I just let them be their wild and crazy selves. Something magical happened in that moment. We laughed, played, danced. I went from the crazy, raving, lunatic-of-a-mom (we have ALL been there, don't act like you haven't) to just enjoying the time we were spending. So, the next time you want to get a great shot of your kiddos, just let them be who they are. That's really what you want to capture, anyway.