I pulled out of the parking spot, smiling, happy, and with the energy of a 2 year who just got chocolate and soda wasted. Jumping around singing along to what ever cd has been in my car for the last few months. When I got home, I began to tell my mom about the session I just had, talking a mile minute and gasping for air in between sentences. Tripping over my words and making absolutely no sense. An hour later, I crashed and found my equilibrium once again. Then it hit me, this happens to me every time I get home from a session where kids are present. By kids, I mean those under 11 years of age.
Most recently, this happened when I met with the Baeza Family at the UCR Botanical Gardens for their session. This was probably my most memorable family session to date. Their 4 year old son would not look at my camera. He'd talk to me but when the camera went up to my face, he'd look away, shut down. Or, run away from me. I was at a loss, trying to think of what to do, which technique to use.
I know God was listening because in that precise moment, he began talking about Diego and Dora the explorer. He looked up at me with bright eyes, and said, "You can be Dora and I will be Diego." From that moment on, I had him.
It takes a lot of energy to photograph children. You have to be willing to jump around and act a fool. Sing along and clap your hands. Spin around and chase. Make believe and be the kids best friend. And when a kid tells you to be Dora, you damn well better be Dora. Otherwise, you might miss the real expressions that make their personality so unique.
Hasta luego amigos!
**In all fairness, I do kind of look like Dora, lol.