Often times years go by before we realize how long it’s been since we had a family portrait update – the kids are growing up at lightning speed, and as we age it’s harder to rally the troops together for dinner, let alone to be photographed. On those rare occasions though, the whole gang comes together – grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and it’s a perfect opportunity to document this special occasion. While I typically prefer the smaller more intimate family sessions from a creative standpoint, I’ve noticed more and more the importance of taking advantage of these fleeting moments to capture everyone together as a larger group. Maybe you’ve rented a cottage for a family reunion, or have brought back the annual family camping trip – these family sessions don’t necessarily need to be all that formal, because what matters is that you’re together.
When the Desjardins asked me to capture their group for a special milestone birthday (some travelling all the way from Manitoulin Island) I thought it was a unique opportunity to try something different. I approach Extended Family Sessions the same way I do weddings – leveraging natural light and earthy settings. However, since these sessions include more people, we focus less on the candid moments and spend more time on ‘formal’ group shots, capturing a good mix of everyone in a few different settings. Here are some favourites from a beautiful evening in Wellington Prince Edward County.