Family is Everything

by Douglas Hoffman on March 31, 2021

Maui is a place where people travel and gather to celebrate family and life. These days with Covid -19, needing a negative test to fly, plus all the planning and logistics for a group of ten, travel is quite a challenge. For some it is worth the effort, because family is everything.

I recently was hired to create a family portrait for a group of ten people, who gathered to celebrate an 80th birthday. There were the parents, two children who were grown, married, and had children. After therein portrait I broke the group into sub groups and created portraits of each family with grand parents and without, as well as couple & children portraits.

Originally the client wanted images created in front of their home but on the day, the winds were a consistent 15-25 mph. Knowing these portraits mattered I suggested an alternate site a mile away. The client agreed but was not happy. She had something in her mind and the weather forced a change. Thankfully the cove I selected was protected and the winds were much less. I had the clients face the wind so hair was blown back and started to create portraits. During the session the client kept going on about wanting portraits done at her house, and I said I am happy to do that but in my opinion I could create better portraits at the location selected.

Once all the portraits were created she asked me if I would create more portraits at her home, and I said of course. At that point the sun was minutes from setting and wind subsided. But, she realized that they had a family dinner all set up and didn’t want to be late. So, we made a meeting for the next afternoon and I went home to edit.

I am very picky when it comes to editing and never select more than three of the same pose and location. While editing I realized it was going to be very hard to choose only three. I know thats a quality problem and won’t complain. But the time I was done I selected 52 images that met and exceeded my standards.

I met the clients the next day and began by showing a slide show. After seeing it once, I repeated it, then showed them the images one by one. By the end, the family was beyond happy, and the patron told me she had serious doubts that she would like the images as they were not created in fronton her house. But, she loved the portraits and appreciated my professionalism by making the decision to move.

I always strive to meet and exceed clients expectations and go wherever asked. That said, I am a professional with years of experience and know whats best for my clients and am not afraid to speak my mind. In this case the family loved the portraits and made their dinner right on time.