Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Cristin's family photo

This is how I came to photograph Cristin's family a few weeks ago.

Many, many, many years ago, Ron became friends with a guy named Kane. Well, his name isn't really Kane.  His name is really Sean, but everyone calls him Kane which REALLY became confusing when ANOTHER guy--who's REAL FIRST NAME is actually KANE--started hanging out with Kane-aka-Sean and then we had TWO Kanes and then we had to start making a conscious effort to start calling the first Kane "Sean" again.


Old habits die hard, and the first guy is still Kane to me. 

So Ron and Kane were friends for a long time and then they went to college together.  Kane was on the baseball team at school, so he roomed with another baseball guy during his freshman year.  (Ron, meanwhile, roomed with a really creepy guy from rural, rural, RURAL Nowhere, USA, and another guy who was NEVER sober and always high as a kite on some ridiculous illicit drug of one kind or another.  One time, this latter guy disappeared.  For weeks.  Just when Ron thought he should call the cops, his roommate reappeared outta the blue.  Apparently, he had been in California and just never told anyone.  Before passing out on (or under?) his bed, he said to Ron that California had been " .... INTENSE. Really INTENSE."  Ron shrugged and set down the phone since the cops no longer needed to be called.)

Lucky for Ron, he and Kane roomed together sophomore year.  (They even got a gerbil that year--the RA discovered it toward the end of the year and just pretended he didn't notice it.) And then they (two boys and the gerbil) got a really nice apartment for the duration of college. But then Kane graduated and moved on and Ron had to stay one more year to finish his MS.  Ron did fine with the roommate situation after Kane, but every time I heard a story about the new roommate who shaved his face on the couch while eating pizza and using a blanket for a plate, I knew it was Ron's way of saying, "I miss Kane."

So yadda yadda yadda, Kane came back to West Chester and spent part of the summer of ... 2006? at the beach with the rest of the gang who you see here in pictures all the time.  And THEN at the beach he met Cristin.

Conveniently for Kane (who is--I don't know--eight feet tall?), Cristin is seven feet tall which totally meant it was destiny for them to get married.  Which they did.

Recently, Cristin and her sister Susan thought it would be a good idea to organize their family for a photo that did not involve A) camera phones B) Instagram C) zombie costumes or D) any costumes (they do host the annual Halloween party, so this is a thing).

We had a really nice day outside in Cristin's parents' backyard--here's what we got:

So here we go with everyone all together.  I was grateful for the abundance of light (no shutter blur) but a little worried about harsh shadows.

So I shifted everyone (and the men shifted all of the deck furniture and opened the umbrella) to see if we could get some shade ...

... and then we moved down to the yard to see if things were easier there.  Don't all of their outfits look great together? None of this matchy-matchy business for them--I think Cristin and Susan orchestrated all of that and then their mom gave final approval.

Poor Matt--I think I deleted maybe twenty shots of him while he's visibly trying not to laugh at whatever craziness his mother and two sisters were yelling at him while he was in front of me.  I kept this one, though. The yelling ran the gamut from, "FIX YOUR COLLAR, MATT!" to "WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR FACE, MATT?" and also "MATT! YOUR HANDS ARE SO AWKWARD!" while Matt would look at me helplessly and ask, "Do you know what I should do?"

More yelling. Notice: The boys find their pose and don't. move. a. muscle. This actually proved very efficient at different points.
Which is better? Color ...

... or black and white?

It should be noted that I took ALL of these photos standing on a step-stool so I could be about 6-8inches taller than my 4'14" self.  I forget which photo I took recently, but I realized that for "very important" pictures I would have to start bringing and using a step stool with me so that my camera wouldn't be pointed UP at my subjects.  Since I'm shorter than everyone else I know, I need to consciously remember to change my default height.  It worked out pretty well here--it appears that I'm on eye-level with everybody (even though really I'm practically on scaffolding).

So there it is--first family portrait done, and I think they turned out pretty well!  If only things were this way for Erin: The weekend after Cristin, I took ANOTHER 200 photos of Erin, Tom, and the twins and got ... nuthin.  Not one where I have all eyes on me and/or limited amounts of baby ennui or distress. Che peccato!

Thanks Cristin and Susan for recruiting me for this--very flattering of you guys to think of me : )  And it's still bizarre to me that I'm photographing the in-laws of the kid who used to sit in front of me in high school calc class.  I weave a tight circle, my friends.  What can I say?

1 comment:

Cristin said...

Thank you so much Heather! I am still laughing at the boys posing and not moving a muscle while we fix our hair and redirect :-)