Is it just me or have family photo shoots become more and more prolific over the past few years? Perhaps it's the advent of social media that makes it seem like every family is on this particular bandwagon. I don't remember the family photo shoot being such a thing when I was growing up, which isn't too bad since, honestly, there are more than a few reasons why family portraits are the absolute worst.
Since becoming a mom and having my own family, I have quite envied the softly lit, casual intimacy of a well-staged shoot. The slice of life forever framing frozen familial bliss is always totally accurate, right? (Hint: not even a little bit.) However, our financial situation never lent itself to making a family portrait a priority. So it was with something resembling glee that I volunteered our family for my photographer friend's study on family portraiture last year. That, my friends, is when I discovered the undeniable fact that family portraits, while adorable in their own right, just suck.
Now don't get me wrong, my family is beautiful, if I do say so myself. My partner and I met while working in film and theater, so we know how to put on a good looking show. "We will be totally great at this,"I said to myself, pointedly ignoring the heavy sighs and exaggerated eye rolls from said partner. I approached the day with excited anticipation and when it was all over, I ended up with the following list of reasons why family portraits are a horrible hellscape from which there is no escape.