Most of you know me as an Edmonton family photographer, but I haven’t talked a lot about how I got here. When I first picked up a camera, I didn’t know that documentary family photography was “a thing”. I just knew the everyday moments were hugely important. It honestly terrified me to think that I might not remember things about my kids. It still does. Not on the days they were scrubbed up and inserted into the perfect outfit for a portrait, but just the usual. The regular everyday and all that goes along with it. Feeding babies with food smeared all over the highchair, the floor and themselves. Bedtime stories with little fingers touching my cheek. The monotony of chores. The meltdowns. Oh, the meltdowns. Lazy summer days jumping off the dock and naked filthy bodies covered in dirt and popsicle drips. The craziness of getting out the door on school days and even the days clutching a barf bucket under a quilt on the couch. I’ve compiled quite a cash of photographs over the years. They are my most prized possession.
As I immersed myself more in the photography world, I started looking for people like me. Photographers who had little interest in creating the perfectly posed, perfectly coiffed portrait. People who celebrate perfection differently….in the gritty, messy imperfect moments that life brings. I joined some communities and then was beyond excited when the Documentary Family Awards were founded. Don’t get me wrong. That doesn’t mean I entered anything in their first competition. It’s a juried photography competition. That is some scary shit.
In January, submissions opened for the next competition and I went for it. Thousands of photos were submitted in six categories by photographers from 40 countries. I was elated to have one photograph place 9th in the Nothing Is Better Than Real Life category and another place 2nd in the Environmental Portrait category. And finally, my environmental portrait was awarded 3rd place in the Best Overall.
Watching the judging was an incredible opportunity for feedback. I cannot wait for what the rest of 2019 will bring!
If you’re interested, you can watch the full live judging HERE
or you can see all the awarded photographs HERE
You can also see our top placing images from the 3rd Documentary Family Awards photography competition in 2018 HERE