Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas Photo Flop

Here's just a little background.

If you know me well, you know I'm always behind on Christmas cards. For some reason, it just ain't working for me to have them in the mail at a decent date. Mostly the reason is because I was busy taking photos of everyone else's family. But, this year I slowed my roll on doing Christmas photos and just did a few that I booked way in advance.

In year's past, I've included our entire family in the photos and my sister has graciously snapped one of us and endured the chaos.

However, this year I decided to nix the chaos, walk to the barn doors seconds from our house, and snap a few of my girls wearing snow hats and cute Christmas sweaters. I had the entire photo session in my brain as I usually do before I go into a photo shoot. I knew what I wanted the end result to be.

I wasn't wanting anything fancy. Just a photo of my two beautiful girls smiling and standing next to each other with the barn doors as the background. I was thrilled with my simple plan.

Jason was thrilled by not having to endure the dreaded Christmas photo session this year. I kind of secretly was to. I'm awkwardly large right now so it didn't sound very appealing to me either.

While supper was cooking, we dressed the girls up and headed straight for the barn. It was approximately 5:15 pm. It gets dark about 5:45 pm so we had roughly 30 minutes of daylight left. Photos are the absolute best right before sunset. See, I'm telling you. I was methodically flawless in my strategic plan.

This photo madness can best be explained through the lens of my camera as we witnessed the Christmas photo disaster unfold before our very eyes. These photos are in EXACT synchronized order as they should be when telling the order of events.

Once we got to the barn, I had Kaylyn in place for the test shot I do to make sure lighting is right.

Next, I had Jason simply put Laney Rae down on the ground right next to her sister. I was ready to fire away. This moment, and this moment alone is when it all went to pot.

Jason picks up Laney Rae to comfort her so that we didn't have Mr. Streaky Red Face pay us a visit. She is such a daddy's girl! All is well. We gave her candy corn. That makes everything better.

Kaylyn- looking confused as to why she is being the good one and not receiving any candy corn.

And then, she just got irritated at the whole situation...............

because this is what was happening on the other side of the lens. Jason decided to let Laney Rae "roam" around and let off some steam as she loves to do on any other day of her life except this particular one.

Kaylyn was looking too cute up against the barn doors. I decided to snap some of her and seriously thought for a brief moment. "Okay, fine. This will be our Christmas card photo this year." But, that is so NOT right to include only one member of your family on your Christmas card.

Doesn't this photo just scream,"Merry Christmas from the Kramer family"????

Meet Mr. Streaky Red Face! He officially paid us a visit. Once he shows up, there isn't much left to do folks who have fair skinned children.

But, for some reason I wasn't fully ready to surrender to Mr. Streaky Red Face. I still thought in my twisted mind that there was still hope of capturing a Christmas photo.

My plan B (because a good photographer always has a plan B) was for Laney Rae to do her own thing and for Kaylyn to casually walk up beside her. We were shooting for the "two sisters walking serenely in the sunset beside each other by a picket fence" pose. Brilliant!

Not so much. Every time that Kaylyn got near her, she did this little number and took off running.

Then it got downright ugly from there. The madness had to stop. Laney Rae was turning to toddler violence- the infamous push the gut. Here is Kaylyn taking one for the Kramer team.

From that moment on, the rest of the photos were all a blur. Literally. Laney wasn't still enough for my camera to capture her active body at 5:45 pm. The sun was gone and we were out of light. I'm not a fan of photos with lots of flash and white faces in them, although I'm most certain Laney Rae's face would have still been red in anything close up.

Jason and I held our heads in defeat as we walked back to the house. It was supposed to be the most low maintenance Christmas photo session ever.

Was it the pink snow hat that threw her universe off kilter?

Was it my ginormous off-camera flash that scared her?

Did she, in fact, know that candy corn was present in Jason's pocket when he sat her down the first time?

Was she mad that the snowman on her sweater was missing a black button eye?

We'll never know what went wrong this year. I thought all of these things as we laid in bed that night.

I'm still in limbo about sending a card vs. not even sending one. Jason with his sweet fatherly heart said to me as we walked back to the house,"Maybe we can try to get one of all of us later."


Later. I'm good with that.

As in when Laney Rae is 3. Its a much better age to photograph I will admit. But, it just doesn't seem right that we don't have a photo to go with our Christmas card......if I do in fact send one out.


Anonymous said...

This made me laugh and made me terrified to ever agree to do a photoshoot that involves kids of any age! Thanks for sharing...

Also... what's this talk about an "off-camera flash" is that new?

The Montalbos said...

You crack me up.

The Montalbos said...

And just send a New Year's card.

Ashley McWhorter said...

So funny and I so feel for you. Been there too many times. It would make for a great Christmas card, though. Just showing true, everyday life with toddlers. :)

mandi said...

oh man! that made me laugh so hard! here are my thoughts- use the cuddly pics in the post before. i can see it now all 3 pics with the nose to nose one in the middle. and then a note about having a peaceful christmas. see?- i have it all planned out. me, who is sitting here with no christmas card plans what-so-ever.

Sharon said...

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QuiltedSimple said...

Oh my gosh I'm dying laughing here! Seriously that would be an awesome christmas card photo with the girls - I'd try again. And I haven't even figured out if I have a picture of the 2 kids together yet to put on a Christmas card to send out. Guess I ought to think on that one here this week and do something about it this weekend! I'm shooting to get my cards in the mail on the 23rd!

Jennifer Bacak said...

Lyns, this was great! KK looks beautiful, standing there by the barn door! Are those Emma's pink boots she's wearing? I hope so! I hope she's getting wear out of them. And as I was catching up on your blog, I LOVE your Christmas decorations!

Aldape family said...

This made me laugh and made my day! I love your dramatic life. ...And KK, wow she is just beautiful. Well, maybe New Years cards would be a better option.(That seems to be what our tradition is going to be!) ..Thanks for sharing!

Grace said...

I loved the story...although my enjoyment came from your frustration! I'm sorry that you had to endure such a "flop" but you managed to tell your story with such color that you had me laughing! Pretty funny!

Kirby said...

They're both so cute...I think you should send this whole story out as a Christmas letter with all the photo's, too!

The Kramer Family said...

Thanks so much for all of your comments and encouragement!

I know what I am going to do.....New Year's cards. Yep. I'm hoping for at least one photo to be randomly taken (thus to catch LR off guard) in front of someone's Christmas tree over the holidays. Surely this will work!

We shall see!

The Kramer Family said...

Oh, and Ryan. Be afraid. Be very afraid. I'd almost write it into your contract that you will not take photos of any child between the ages of one and three. But, that's just me.


Country Girl said...

I chuckled scrolling down through the photos. I remember those years...wasn't long ago.

texasmcvays said...

Okay when you said Mr. Streaky Red face I was thinking ...huh? I do not know him but we do know Mr. Red eye lip stuck out! Light brown has it's advantages! I love the pictures especially the ones of Laney crying...I personally think you should send them out with her little personality in full effect. Now what you need to do is add sound effects and I'll send you a voice recording of Pearson threating folks to have a "MERRY CHRISTMAS" like she is some kind of big meanie!
Merry Christmas!