A few months back, we got an email from an editor at Family Circle magazine, asking if we’d be willing to have our family profiled in the July issue. This sounded fun, and so we said yes. We had fun answering a series of questions about our family—who we are, what we do, and how we live. But then there was the matter of getting the photos to go with the article.
Because we live in a state of constant disorder and dishevelment, certain steps had to be taken.
1) Robbi got a haircut (witness the wonder in the photos that follow).
2) We cleaned up our damn house (and studio).
It made us wonder why we don’t try harder to live in a tidy and orderly environment more often.
Even the kitchen—even the REFRIGERATOR DOORS—were relatively clean for the first time in a long time.
But certain aspects of the facelift were beyond our control. When the photographer Ari and photography director Tina showed up, we were dressed for (what we thought was) success. But they took one look at us and asked if they might pay a visit to our respective closets. I was assigned to wear a different t-shirt. Robbi was a more complicated matter. Various blouses were considered before a green-and-black-striped tank top was deemed the winner.
We knew it already, but it is good to be occasionally reminded that we are not on the cutting edge of fashion.
Once the wardrobe considerations were behind us, we moved onto the photo shoot itself. Ari was armed with a minor armada of fancy cameras. The kids, accustomed to being on the other end of a lens, went about their business without a hitch.
I was occasionally enlisted to place them in one position or another.
And was sometimes called upon for inspiration when particularly animated facial expressions were called for.
But for the most part, the kids just played, and Ari did his thing.
And when the shot he wanted did not materialize organically, Ari was not afraid to create a little magic.
When it seemed our living room rug was cramping his natural-wood-floor style…
…we got out the swiffers and reinvented the place.
It made me wonder if maybe Ari was onto something. In addition to being an ace photographer and fashion consultant, he might have a future as an interior decorator.
After getting his fill of family hijinks, Ari moved into the studio. He took some shots of our books.
And some shots of us critiquing some of Robbi’s illustrations. But I did not take a photo of that. Because I was in the photo.
Afterward, we went downstairs for some shots in the letterpress studio.
And then we went outside.
We went to our local soda fountain Stam Drugs and got ice cream. And then we progressed down High Street, licking our cones while trying not to trip on our own feet while Chris (the photographer’s assistant) carried a large photo filter to reflect muted light onto our faces.
We were lucky to have a beautiful day.
And a fun one. It makes perfect sense that the people of Family Circle would be incredibly kind, warm, and patient, but I’m happy to confirm that this was the case.
The profile comes out in the July issue.
For now, we are enjoying a fleeting window of relative calm before the house becomes cluttered (and Robbi’s hair becomes long and unlovable) once more.
What a happy experience! You must be Chestertown’s most photographed family. Congratulations. And I am only slightly miffed that none of the five of you slipped on a Friendship Montessori shirt for at least one photo (even in the one with August dancing on the counter. Although I loved seeing him on the kitty castle even more.)
What a wonderful photo essay!
How lucky we are to have you as neighbors and friends!
Annie, Charlotte and Donald