The Burr Homestead Family Session (Fairfield, CT)

There's a lot to be said for convenience.

All photographers have a burning desire to create the most beautiful images. We all have our methods.. but the dirty little secret is.. it's not that hard to create stunning photographs when you photograph during the 'golden hour' (right before sunset or right after sunrise). The light is already just incredible. All you need to do is point your camera in the right direction and press a button (ok, so it's a little more complicated than that, but you get my point).

And there's a very good reason why, when you contact those photographers, with gorgeous 'golden hour' portfolios, and ask for a family session sometime in the morning (when your kids aren't yet at the point of driving everyone, and themselves, absolutely insane), they laugh and say "Absolutely not. If you want the kinds of photographs I'm known for, you can't do it at any other time of day".

And you seriously can't.

So what's the next best thing? Finding someone who can photograph during the worst time of day and produce a photograph that's still beautifully lit. It's a little harder and takes a bit more practice, but some of the best photographers have perfected the 'full sun' technique to provide that wonderful convenience for their clients. The most incredible solution involves no light modifiers at all (no flash, no reflectors, and no diffusers of any kind). It's the technique I use because I photograph families.. and the last time I checked, no toddler is going to sit still in one spot while you make sure the reflector is just right.

Of course, I do get lucky sometimes and have a family with older kids who actually do stand in one spot, but it doesn't change my process. I still scout the location ahead of time. I still walk around looking like a crazy person, literally spinning in circles, trying to find the best angles for light. I look at the surrounding objects to see what color casts are being thrown around (hello green glass!). And I literally map out the photoshoot before my clients even get there. 

In the end, I don't care what I have to sacrifice. I'm totally fine with looking slightly insane as I walk around a park. I don't mind working a little harder and spending extra time finding the perfect spots, because it allows me to photograph at a location that really means something to the family. And the convenience of being able to schedule a photo session at ANY time of day is absolutely worth it.