When James was shopping for a family photographer, I was over the moon when he asked me to officially photograph his family. As long time friend, I jumped at the chance to spend the afternoon with his bunch of hooligans. When I look at this family, I see what love looks like. James’ wife, Amberlee and I decided on the hamlet of Rowley, because, as Amberlee puts it “of the unique settings inside the town which made for awesome backdrops”. Scheduling a session with this bunch proved difficult as they often bear a hectic schedule, with 5 kids, and a career in Health and Safety, it’s no wonder we had trouble nailing down a date. But on a very cold day in mid-November we waded through the snow to capture the smiles of the Swayda bunch. Antoine, a comic book junkie; Gabriel, an avid bicycle rider; Hunter, the football star; Harrison the breakout baseball player, and little 7 month old Lily, who now at 15 months loves to dance and kiss all over her big brothers. Truth be told, it wasn’t very hard to get smiles out of these guys. The trick? Gummy treats. Even James was thrilled with the idea of trading gummy treats for smiles. Amberlee recommends every family come prepared with gummy treats to trade for smiles with the kids. We kept their session casual, because that’s the Swayda style. We also kept it moving quick because I’m really not kidding when I say it was cold! When we were all wrapped up for the day, I asked Amberlee what her favourite part of their session had been. Her response tickled my heart-strings, “We enjoyed the session because it was time spent together.”
I only had one request for a photo, and that photo came from James. He asked that one photo be edited in a “sepia tone”. Now, sepia toned photos are not my style, but I obliged his request. I waded through all the photos we had taken that day, and I picked the one I thought James would appreciate the most in his sepia tone. Not only did he appreciate it, he made it his Facebook profile picture!