A sense of belonging – Your family, your story

by Elis Alves posted 13/06/2018 category A day in the life, Family, Family documentary, Relationships

My only living grandmother has a treasure box: that’s where she keeps photographs of our family from the time of her parents, to her youth and marriage, her sisters’ weddings and all the children in the family since then. A veritable treasure trove of family history. My family’s history.

It shows me where I come from , who were my grandparents, great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents. It also shows me where the color of my eyes came from or the shape of my hair or whose personality I inherited or where did that dimple, that one that one of my sisters and my nephew have, came from.

Photographs are treasures that record our history, that gives us a sense of belonging. They are living memories whose value only increases as time passes. They show us what our parents looked like when they got married, what our grandparents were like before they got older, what was our face like when we were babies or our adventures growing up. So many memories we have have in our minds are based on the stories we hear and the photographs we got! Things we might have never remembered if they had not been photographed.

In an rapidly changing world full of volatile relationships I want to help you give your family and children this sense of belonging, this anchoring that comes from knowing who you are and where you come from.

They say an image can bring back a thousand memories and this is the concept behind family photojournalism, bette known as “a day in the life“. I’ll be your family’s personal photographer for an entire day. From the time your children wake up to the time they go to bed. A complete record of your day just the way it is; with all its ordinary and remarkable details. Those things we wanted so bad to be able to remember years later but, for the fact that they seemed so routine, didn’t seem important enough to be registered. That face and hair your child wakes up with, the food preparations, the various tasks during the day, the interactions, hugs, caresses, the fun. Your home, your family, your story.

All of this just so you can keep it in visual form and remember a myriad of details you had forgotten until you see the picture again. The smell of your child’s hair, that house you bought and decorated with such  care, a part of your story written visually for you to be able to revisit it whenever you want.

If your children are already grown up and your parents are older, I can still be your photographer. You know that family lunch you have every sunday? Exactly. I’ll spend the day with you documenting everything: the food prep, the talks and laughter while you eat, the clean up and naps and interactions after. That grandma who never wants to be photographed, the grandpa who believes photography is a waste of time – those we don’t know how much longer we’ll have around – recorded in natural images that bring with themselves a thousand memories. Photography and video that become ever more valuable as time goes by because they tell your story.

Unlike a traditional family photoshoot you don’t have to pose, put on different clothes or get made up. It’s the kind of record keeping for those who know how much a memory, your relationships, your family history is worth. Those who know that what is truly important goes far beyond what the eyes can see.

All this began with a blog post I read a few years ago by Antonio Prata somewhere on the web. In it a taxi driver tells his passenger, a photographer, how much he missed his deceased wife and how he didn’t have ‘any pictures’ of her. ‘What do you mean you have no photos of her?’ asked the photographer. ‘What about your wedding pictures?’

‘Well, of course I have them,’ the driver answers ‘but only pictures of events that had nothing to do with our normal routine. Pictures at weddings, on the beach on vacation, that kind of stuff I do have. But she’s always different from the way she looked in our daily lives. I don’t have any pictures in which she has her hair up, working in the kitchen, no make up… as beautiful as she was. I don’t have any of these kind of pictures. This woman, these moments now only lives in my memories.’

Below you will find what I’m talking about. In spite the fact that the day was not in the easiest of times for them – she was pregnant with her second child, the oldest had an awful sinus infection and they were preparing for a kitchen overhaul – the video and photographs show well what their days and their routine are like before the second baby comes. In the end, even the oldest child’s sickness became a blessing in disguise because she spent more time on their laps than if she had been alright. And that made for some beautiful moments I could capture in photographs. There were many photographs along the day and you can see some of them below along with the video and a sneak peek of the album. 🙂

If this is what you were looking for your family, get in touch! It will be a pleasure to help you record and keep your family history!

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

Sorocaba, SP - Junho 2015

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E abaixo o vídeo.  |  And below you’ll find the video.

Um dia na vida da Familia Romero Grande | A day in the life of the Romero Grande family from Elis Alves Photography on Vimeo.

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