That’s the voicemail my mom left on my phone after she saw my last blog post with her photo on it. Her message made me laugh because she can be really funny, even when she isn’t trying to be. But she really wanted me to take that photo down… but… I didn’t.
I didn’t take the photo down, partly because she is my mom, and not a client, but more importantly because I LOVE THAT PHOTO, because it is my real, uncensored mom, and because it was a great day with a great hike, and because that is a look that I know and love so well.
I was a little nervous though, because she said that I could never take another photo of her again, and I do have some family members who mean that. So I thought I should at least try and take a photo that she might not hate, because to take a photo of her that she would love would be impossible. So on our hike in Pt Reyes, during her Thanksgiving visit, we happened to stop in a spot where the light was just perfect and I talked her into trying one more time. Hopefully this time she won’t hate the photos… we’ll soon see.
Most people do not like photos of themselves, even really good photos of them, and that is one of the hardest parts of being a photographer. Before the shutter is ever pressed, the protests come… “I am not photogenic,” or, “Your camera might break.” And sometimes the offensive body parts are listed, one-by-one.
But if I want to be a photographer then I have to ignore all protests, because if I didn’t then I would never take another photo of a person again. So I say,”You won’t break my camera. You probably are photogenic, but you may not have had a photographer who understands what makes a good photo.” I promise them that we will end up with photographs they will like… and I won’t put any photos that they don’t like on display to the public… (as long as THEY are not my MOM… sorry mom… I love you. Thank you for being a beautiful, trusting, understanding, supportive and a patient model/mother!!)
And… here are a couple more from the hike that I love too.
About the author paige green
Paige Green is a documentary and portrait photographer, whose storytelling approach to photography frequently addresses issues involving agriculture, land use, and food. Her work is featured in nine books and has been published in Glamour, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GQ, Country Living, House Beautiful, and Culture. Paige lives in Petaluma, CA with a house full of boys.
Give me Louisiana
My Brain On War… (And FREE Photo Shoot for those who match my donation to relief efforts in Ukraine)
When the World Feels Upside Down… Together We Can (plus: bonus photo of me in middle school)
I really like the second one, and the one with her and A is pretty funny!
I am number one Saudi fan of your photography. I am not married yet but I do wish that you take my wedding pics!!
You’re an artist, an amazing and a very rare one!!
your mom looks adorable here 🙂
Hey Paige – I just love these! Such a beautiful lady!