I’ve found backyard parties a quite magical place where families come together and are most able to be themselves. Working as a photojournalist, I have been documenting backyard parties for years and continue to add to the Backyard Families photography series collection, whether it’s a dinner party, a photograph of three generations of a family posed with ball gloves, or a simple barbecue with family and friends enjoying each other’s company.
Many people have big summer parties, some even make it into a family reunion. These are my favorite to photograph. But why do so many big summer family events go without a photographer? Photos like these aren’t possible with a smartphone, but need a documentary photographer to make, the eye of an outside observer to really capture the moments of the day.
As a photojournalist working to create photographs for a feature story, these photographs add up to tell the who, what and why of the day. They truly show people at their best, outside of a formal event in the comfort of home, and with their closest friends.
I will be adding to the collection this year as the weather becomes warmer in Colorado. Who knows where this project will take me, who I will meet, and who I will make once-in-a-lifetime photographs of–photos that will get printed and put into a small album–it’s trending, known as a Brag Book.
Just like a wedding wouldn’t happen without bringing in a real photographer, and just leaving it up to the guests with their phones, backyard parties need a hired photographer as they are a great way to get the family together and make the best photographs that really show them as they are, engaging with one another, sharing stories and laughs. Engaged in life.
After all, what’s more important than our families? They are the VIPs of our world and should be photographed by a competent photojournalist who knows how to tell the story of the day in pictures. A true professional who will amaze you and your family with the joy they’ve documented.
If it’s not worth it to you to spend on your family, to get photographs that savor those special moments of life together, then what is?