Aside from wine and works of art, tangible memories such as photographs, increase their personal value as time progresses and that's the reason why I love photography and photographing families. Family portraits not only make you freeze time and help you remember how each family member looked like at a certain age, more so with the kids who grow up pretty fast! But more important, these photographs document the laughs, fun and the warmth that being together brings.
I had a grand time photographing the Imbuido family, with three generations in tow! I got to witness siblings Leslie, Kat and JP's closeness. And you know that even when each one has their own lives now, you know just by how they hug and laugh together, that they got each others' backs.
Oh and I love the look of their very proud mom, and dad, too! How she looks at her kids, you know that they are her real treasures, and no material wealth will ever replace her accomplishment with them.
And the kids, absolutely adorable. Cousin and sibling love. I'm sure that the family are happy to know that the family bonding will trickle through the next generations.
I photographed Cris and her wonderful family last December for their annual Christmas family portraiture. And this is our second time we did something together, and I feel honored that I get to be a part of the happy experience of documenting the love between owner and pet, and thankful to be part of Cris' healing.
I honestly wish all days were bright and sunny like the time I photographed the pair, running and rolling around on grass . But life has its way of teaching us certain truths, unfortunately, through gloomy days.
Bratley's master was not Cris, but John, Cris' boyfriend whose surprising illness took everyone by surprise. And it was just a few days that he battled with all his strength, but succumbed eventually. He left not only Cris, but Bratley. Both in shock and in grief, taking solace on each other, to face the unsurmountable loss of John.
So no, this is just not a story between a pet and its owner. It's a story about life, how we heal, how we try, how we move on, and how we find strength by holding someone's hand. Or in Cris' case, someone's paw to look back and move forward with love in our hearts.
And I would like to thank Cris for allowing me to photograph their lovely relationship. I admire your strength and your courage. And your ability to look at the beautiful even when it's so much easy to look the other way.