It was W.C. Fields who said never work with children or animals. He was pretty spot on the money; there are some days it is easier to get a camel through the eye of a needle than it is to get a toddler to sit still and look at a camera. For every money shot a photographer takes of a child I can tell you for free there are at least 30 shots that went straight into the Recycle Bin. Anyone who tells you otherwise is lying.
In March of 2013 my stepdaughter decided she was going to enter Miller, who was then nine months old, into a cute baby competition. He was required of course to wear the sponsor's brand of onesie in the entry photo. So despite having already taken least five thousand gob-smackingly awesome shots of Boy over the course of his short life, we had to shell out twelve bucks and arrange for another photo dressed in the offending jumpsuit.
We ummed and ahhed over what we'd do, how we'd style it, light it etc; which of course is all bullsh&t because when you take photos of a baby anytime past newborn stage, you have to sit them down, make a whole bunch of stupid noises so they look at you then shoot like mad before they start to cry, fall off whatever they are sitting on or both. You should know those cute shots with a baby sitting up on their elbows with their hands cupped under their chin are shot in a sauna, and photoshopped. Google it if you don't believe me.
The morning of the shoot Lauren turned up with Miller and we plonked him on a fat leather Ottoman in our front loungeroom, opened the curtains to let the sun do all the work and banged off 40 images. I'd just had an operation the day before so was feeling super uncooperative and uninspired.
We ended up with this: one perfect moment.
|Butter wouldn't melt.|
But for the record, here are *some* of the outtakes:
He didn't win, but he'd already won our hearts and that was the only prize really worth having.
'One Perfect Moment' will be a series of single, powerful images that tell a story. Sometimes I'll cheat, like today, and provide backup images to better illustrate the tale.