Adventures in Teen Photography

Apparently, my skills as a photographer have decreased in direct proportion to my son getting older.  While there was once a time that my uplifted camera would elicit funny faces and jumps off the highest perch available, now that my boy is approaching 16, even a slightly raised phone (with camera app on stealth mode) will elicit a groan, eye roll, the baritone siren of “Mommmm” and a loud declaration that this, in fact, is a photo free zone. I have lost my photog-swag to such an extent that my taking photos of a subject will more than likely drain them of their swag as well.

Consider the following examples:

This photo was taken in 2004. Apparently, I was a much better photographer then. The subject is enjoying the shot and actively participating in telling the story of the day. That raised finger is in fact a prop- the subject is entering into First Grade.

Another successful shot. Note that the subject enjoys looking directly into the lens and even humors me with unsolicited funny faces.  The joy is free flowing. Life is good.
Fast forward 10 years. Here, I can not make myself visible to the now teen subject.  My camera makes me invisible and silences my voice requesting him to look up.  I am considering selling this cloaking science to the Military. Assuming of course, we find ourselves facing an army of cool teens.  (A video game console and barrels of Pizza pockets may however work just as well in distracting the enemy…)
This photo was taken just last week. Sadly, in the 10 years since the first photo was taken, despite advanced equipment, Lightoom skills and classes, my proficiency as a photographer has deteriorated. Before the shot was taken, I was reprimanded for being way too slow and a bit “lame”. I was reminded that this was not a necessary shot- and believe that the subject felt inconvenienced at best. I found that the best tool to use to get the subject to stop moving and pause for a shot was a combination of 1 part Mothers Guilt + 1 part “The Look”.  I believe the subject did feel some pity at seeing me a bit of an emotional mess as he walked off into Junior Year High School and gave me a half hearted smirk.

I am determined however, to capture the awesome spirit of this teen creature- and will work on perfecting ways to catch him on film.  It may be dangerous- but it’s worth it. And if all else fails, and the mission proves futile, Mama can always take more photos of the little guy!

Thankfully, the Little One has not yet learned that selfies are lame, especially ones taken with the Mother- and will happily smoosh his face next to mine in public.

 

what joy will you create today?

Comments

  1. Yes! Thank goodness for that!! There's another strange phenomenon that happens with the big one- while I am told not to take photos- I am always asked if I got any good ones lol!

  2. Yes! Thank goodness for that!! There's another strange phenomenon that happens with the big one- while I am told not to take photos- I am always asked if I got any good ones lol!

  3. Your posts always make me smile! I can so relate with trying to get those teen photos. haha Still, today, its hard to get the 20-something and 30 yr old to allow a decent photo by me. 🙂 Great post. Good luck.

  4. Your posts always make me smile! I can so relate with trying to get those teen photos. haha Still, today, its hard to get the 20-something and 30 yr old to allow a decent photo by me. 🙂 Great post. Good luck.

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