Thursday, March 25, 2010

Analysis of a Portrait

So, my kid happens to go to school with the kid of a very popular local photographer. And, because she's a parent and loves the school, she does the school pictures for us. Fall and Spring, we have pictures made. We, the parents, buy a CD of images (usually 2 or 3 of your kid and 1 or 2 of the whole class). She charges the school a price that pretty much only covers her materials and the school charges us a completely different price and Voila! Fundraiser.

It's pretty perfect. Simple. Necessary. Plus, we'll all pretty much buy pictures of our kids until the cows come home, right? I have some awesome ones. Really, there is one where Brynna is hanging out in a cherry tree and the tree is all in bloom with pink blossoms and Oh, I can't tell you the perfection and beauty.

This one is pretty great, too. I just want to take a moment to analyze the wonderfulness of this portrait.

First of all, it has a very academic feel to it, despite being outside because of the nice wooden chair and the building in the back. That building, by the way, is not *actually* my kid's school. It's the building that sits directly in front of my kid's school. My kid's school is not all that pretty on the outside. But still. Love it.

Secondly, I did a pretty good job with the ensemble if I do say so myself. Brynna won't do a picture in something too simple and she always wants to be in a dress. The color on this is great and the stripes could have been overwhelming but aren't and the thing I was most worried about, the weird flowers on the top, doesn't hardly show up. So, good for me.

Thirdly, check out that bokeh! Do you read Pioneer Woman? Bokeh is apparently when things are out of focus. On purpose, not out of focus like all of my Santa pictures from Maren's first Christmas. Anyway, it's good in backgrounds and PW is in L-O-V-E with it. Seriously. This picture has great bokeh. Pretty much Brynn and the chair are the only things in focus. Which is nice. You know right where to look.

Fourthly, I love the pose. It's hard to get Brynna to not look weird when she's posing. She gets suddenly stiff. Or she goes all Madonna, And Vogue! on you. Her hands are especially pretty much always doing something weird. There are probably 732 pictures of her as a baby where she is playing with something and seems to be flipping off the camera. Those are some nice, calm hands.

Fifthly, look at that smile. Man, that smile is a relief. She usually has this fake, pasted on smile in every picture for the past year. It's rare to be able to catch her in a moment of real smile. This isn't her greatest, you know, she can really light up a room when your camera battery is dead or the whole kit and kaboodle is in a different room. But, all in all, not a bad smile. Nice, even.

Sixthly... Oh, who am I kidding, it's time to address the elephant in the room. Ack! The hair! I'm sorry, when did my kid become Cousin It? Where are her eyes? You cannot see them at all! Her nose is half missing! How did I not realize how bad it was? How did I let it get this way? Why did I ever think I could handle bangs? I get my hair cut once a year, if that, for the love of all that's good and holy, I cannot be trusted with bangs. I once went 18 months without so much as a trim. And the last time I had it done was in June. JUNE! Which, coincidentally, was the last time she had hers done. That's right, June! (Well, I did trim her bangs once in the interim, but I did such a disastrous job, I swore I'd never touch scissors again. Which was short lived because of well, packaging and crochet and whatever, I don't have to defend my scissor usage to you.)

Where was I? Oh, yes, where else would I be? On the freakin' hair! What was I thinking? I mean, come on. Is that really even my kid? She could be in witness protection with that hair. What kind of monster am I? Really? Really?

And what am I going to do with this picture. I mean, I'm going to buy it, because, as previously mentioned, I'll buy pictures of my kid until the sheep dogs come home, and also, Voila! Fundraiser! But seriously, I can't frame this photographic evidence of neglect. This travesty, this monument to parental laziness. Can that child even see?

Gah. Fail.

We will be visiting a salon this weekend. Probably of the walk-in, $10 haircut variety, but still. There will be cutting. Snipping, layering and trimming. She will emerge with eyes. Unfortunately, this is our last Montessori picture, so next year, we will have the same crappy blue tarp background as everyone else in the country.

Oh, also, since I couldn't figure out how to get rid of that logo (that's kinda the point, Jessi) I thought I'd go ahead and link to Keepsakes Photography's site. They are good people over there. Very good with kids and all-around lovely. They just can't do anything about neglectful parents who refuse to cut their kid's hair. You'd think photoshop would have a tool for that.


Steve said...

It's a beautiful picture of a happy girl. You should definitely buy it.

Suze said...

Steve's right. I think every picture of a young kid needs something that's not quite perfect. Makes it more real, somehow.

Mrs. Allroro said...

You could pretend she refused to get a haircut and that you were just picking your battles.

Jessi said...

Mrs. A - I like it!

My mom has pointed out that perhaps I am over-reacting. Perhaps a picture of my child from the nose down is fine. And, perhaps it is. I suppose I'll think it's cute when she's all growned up. Right now, though, since I don't know when the next time a professional who isn't trying to do 700 kids in one marathon day will take my kid's picture, I'm a little crushed.

Tears In My Shotglass said...

It is a perfect picture of Brynna! Even with a hair cut she manages to cover her face with her hair. It is truly her. Also, I completely agree, the one of her in the blossoming tree was beautiful. Maybe we can figure out a way to skip the school pictures and have them taken at Keepsake around the same time.