Mamas, why you need to be in the photos too

How many photos of your kids have you got on your phone or digital camera? Hundreds? Thousands?

How many of those photos feature you? We bet you can count them on one hand. Two at a push.

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They say every picture tells a story but so often, when it comes to family photos, there is a vital character missing – Mom. Mamas are the center of their children’s life but are all too often missing from family snaps.

It’s easy to understand why. We’re always the ones taking the photos. And – to be honest – we feel self-conscious in front of the lens and shy away. It’s so much easier to hide behind it instead.

Because we’re always looking down the lens we see the fresh and cheeky grins of our kids: pudgy hands holding a bunch of flowers, their little legs in rainbow wellies splashing in puddles. We worry that our messy mom-bun and lack of make-up will spoil the shot.

When you look back on the hundreds of photos of happy moments with your babies and children you know you were always there in the moment. But you’re never there in the captured memory.

One day though you may regret not being in the photos and editing yourself out of the family memories. And, even more so, your children certainly will.

They won’t mind that you don’t look perfect. They never mind anyway. They want to see that wide smile, those squeezy cuddles, your hand holding theirs and all the silly and funny moments you shared. Messy hair, mom-tum or otherwise. We’re not perfect moms and the moments we capture don’t need to be perfect either.

Think about that precious first photo you have when you held your newborn baby in your arms for the very first time. Chances are you were looking far from polished.

With your face bright red from the effort of delivery, your hair half out of a ponytail and wearing a green hospital gown. But it’s still one of your most cherished photos of all. The beauty is in your wide smile and look of wonder as you gaze down at your beautiful baby. And the fact that it was a moment you will never forget.

Next time you feel self-conscious about getting in front of the lens then remember how little it matters in that first photo that you looked perfect. It’s all about capturing family memories of you all together.
One day you’ll be glad you and your children can look back on them and see that mama is in the photos too.

Always there – just as she always was.

Creative ways Mamas can be in the photos too:

● First of all, let me take a ‘welfie’.

They’re silly, they’re a bit cheesy but selfies are a fun way to be in the photo too. Family selfies have got their own term now – the welfie! Bunch up together and take lots of pics together. A selfie stick makes taking these photos a whole lot easier. Pick an interesting background – a winding street, colorful doorways, the beach – and snap away.

● Try a tripod

A tripod is every Mama’s best friend. Set it up and then set the timer and get ready to pose together. It doesn’t matter if not everyone is looking at the camera. Some of the best photos are when you are all giggling, jumping around and being silly.

● Take a little time (lapse)

Time-lapse settings on phones are a great way to capture family moments. You can video even the most every day magical moments and then speed them up to create videos that capture the memories.

Family timelapse from Maui!

● Mirror, mirror on the wall

A lovely way to capture you all together in a photo is to take snaps of your reflections in the mirror. These shots look natural and have interest. If you are in a cafe or restaurant with a mirror then take a snap of you all staring into it. Or use the mirror at home to snap moments when you are looking at the kids playing.

● Hand over the camera

Give it to your mum/partner/friend or even to your kids and ask them to snap away on a family day out or even a family day in. You don’t have to pose. But feel free to do so all together having fun in front of the camera.

Finding ways to be in the photos takes a little thought and a little planning but once you get into the swing of it you (and your kids) will be so glad that you captured so many happy family moments – where Mama was in the picture too.

Written by Mas & Pas a parenting website and community offering positive parenting insights and hacks, fun kids crafts and quick recipes.

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