What to Do When It All Goes Wrong at Your Seattle Family Photo Shoot

Last month, we had a tear-filled photo shoot with the Lieb family at Ferrel McWhirter Park in Redmond. They had a finger-painting adventure theme for their shoot and it turned into a total emotional melt down. As a Seattle family portrait photographer, we deal with crying babies ALL THE TIME. I want to reassure parents that this is all part of our job and there's no need to feel embarrassed, stressed or upset. We have tricks up our sleeve that make the whole thing more fun for everyone so you can end up with photos that are still happy memories. Here's a little insight from Camille Lieb who survived this crying photo shoot like a supermom!!

"As a mother of toddler twins I don’t have enough time, nor enough hands, to take good quality photos of my kids. That’s why The Happy Film Company is my hero! 

We have worked with Chamonix and her team a number of times now and each time I am blown away. We last used The Happy Film Company to capture my tiny loves turning two. The first important step was thinking of an activity that would keep the kiddos happy, that seems to be the easiest way to get real smiles.

Mother and son portrait  - the Happy Film Company - Seattle Family Photos

We decided to do our shoot at a park that had some farm animals. The idea was we would explore the animals, capture some family shots, and then set up some paint supplies in the park and let the babes make a mess! They love animals, they love paint, and boy do they love messes.

What could go wrong!? Well, the answer is- everything! Because everything that could go wrong, did go wrong. My fun-loving, energetic, balls of energy were whining, crying and rounding out their epic tantrums by throwing themselves (and their dress clothes- which next time i’ll skip!) in the dirt!

It really started to go downhill when I tried to take my son’s stuffed fox away from him not wanting it in the photos. Looking back I would have just let the fox join us, if fox would have made the little man happy, I should have just embraced the fox! Fox or not, The Happy Film Company didn’t miss a beat. Chamonix never lost her smile and just kept shooting all while assuring me that it wasn’t a total fail. It was so hard to believe her.

Mother and son portrait  - the Happy Film Company - Seattle Family Photos

I left the park that day exhausted and really let down. A day I had been so excited about had turned into my worst nightmare. But then… the pictures and slideshow arrived! Sure there were a number of drool and snot filled screaming faces but that’s real life with toddlers! What’s more exciting though is that by some work of magic Chamonix had captured small beautiful moments that were hidden between the tears. A kiss I shared with my little man, my husband comforting my daughter, or the four of us just sitting in the grass during one of the very few happy moments.

Looking at the photos now I laugh because they so perfectly capture what our life looks like with two two year olds. Its messy, and hard, but full of love, and that’s exactly what the Happy Film Company captured." 

-Camille Lieb