When Real Simple said they were sending a photographer to shoot me with my family, at home, I felt like I was falling down the rabbit hole. It's just the kind of magazine assignment or commercial shoot I usually get. I've been her a zillion times. But I've never been them.
So, yeah, every cliche response I've heard from subjects flew out of my mouth:
"Oh! Our house isn't , um, magazine worthy."
"Do I have time to lose 10 pounds?"
"I'm having, like, a bad hair week"
At least I didn't go for "heh,heh, I might break your camera".
The photographer, Sam Contis, was sweet, and arrived right on time, shooting 4x5 film, available light. Cool. She did the scouting walk-through, you know, when you seem to be making small talk with the subjects but you're actually sizing up their space while also trying to gauge their personality and style, and any physical issues to work around. I could hear what was running through her brain, I swear it.
She posed us in a spot we don't usually gather, I know I do that to people all the time. Only this time I felt the weirdness. Truly, it's odd, you're in your own space, but in a new way.
Love the image. It looks just like us. And, I learned a lot from the experience. I'm taking it along now everywhere I go.