You might remember the Lee Family from two years ago. We travelled to Taiwan to document their family vacation to Sun Moon Lake when Esme was a feisty 2 year old and Flynn was a sleepy newborn. We were supposed to meet up with them again last year at Disney World, but unfortunately their trip was cancelled at the last minute so we missed the opportunity to photograph them there (side note, this might have been for the best as I was freshly pregnant with our daughter Charlie and let’s just say the Happiest Place on Earth was the “Puke-iest” place on earth for me!)
This time, we met up in Paris, one of our favourite cities, and we got to be the translators for a change! While the kids have grown significantly, a lot has remained the same: good appetites (I cannot get enough of watching Esme eat!), followed closely by food-comas, diaper changes on the go, tons of personality, and the occasional meltdown of course (Flynn’s turn now!).
While we love photographing weddings, there is something so incredibly special about documenting a family vacation. Travelling with our own kids is one of our greatest joys in life and being there to document the experience for another family is just so special. I love the idea that Esme and Flynn looking through these photo albums years in the future, looking back on experiences that shaped them despite not having any memories of. I just hope that our images can allow them to see how sweet and spirited and hilarious they are, and how loved they are by their parents.
We are excited to keep this tradition going and look forward to many more trips with the Lee Family!
It’s been a quiet year on our blog… but it’s been everything but quiet in our lives. 2016 was a challenging one for us in many ways, giving us one of our highest highs: our daughter Charlie, and one of our lowest lows: the sudden loss of Daniel’s father.
But back in June, before either one of these events rocked our world in completely opposite ways, there was a spontaneous trip. A trip we’d intended to take 5 years earlier for our honeymoon, but that we never got around to actually taking. It took a seat sale and our favourite motto: “Just Do It” (borrowed from Nike), to convince us, and before we knew it we were on our way to Iceland with our 2 year old son Max and my 7 month pregnant self. We rented an RV and planned a rough itinerary to take us all the way around the country in 7 days. We planned some stops, but mostly we planned to be surprised.
It’s hard to describe this place, or this trip. The scenery, the fresh air, the adventure that allowed our little family to have… it was just so special.
We pet Icelandic horses on the side of the road… danced in front of waterfalls at midnight… skipped rocks on a lake reflected by an endless sunset sky… ran through smelly sulphuric clouds on an otherworldly geothermal field… drank glacier water straight from a river… watched the waves crash into bright blue icebergs… got our hands dirty with black sand (well, that was mostly Max)… ran halfway up a mountain in the pursuit of a herd of sheep (Max again)… soaked in a 100 year old pool surrounded by mountains… and again in a cliffside hot tub at midnight… and again in a geothermal pool in the rain…
This magical place gave our family of 3.5 exactly what we needed at that moment in our lives; solidified us and gave us a life-long priceless memory just before life threw some major changes and challenges our way. We can’t wait to return when the kids are older and make some new memories in a land that now holds so much meaning to us.
“Love in it’s truest form has no language or words, it just has a thousand and one actions we all wish we could describe” – K.B Emery
Daniel and I are no strangers to travelling to faraway locations for photoshoots; and since the birth of our son Max, we have several thousand photos to prove that we have also become quite used to photographing the every day life of a child! Travelling halfway around the world to photograph a family, however, was a first for us. When Lily contacted us to see if we would come to Taiwan to document a weekend in the life of her little family, we were so excited to take on a different kind of photography assignment, and one that we felt was very much up our alley.
For 3 days, we joined the Lee family on their family vacation; driving several hours from Taipei to Sun Moon Lake in central Taiwan, making pit stops along the way to grab a bite and stretch our legs, wandering around the park, and taking a boat trip around the lake. We didn’t need to speak the same language to get a sense of little Esme’s dynamic personality, or to know that she is a daddy’s girl through and through. We observed little Flynn, who at only a few months of age is mellow and quiet, and seems content to leave the spotlight to his sister. There were naps in the car, diaper changes, and a few meltdowns; real, every day stuff that we photographed for this family to look back on fondly. And you know what I love the most about all of this? These real moments, as we photographed them, all made Lily and Ray’s album selection.
At the heart of it all, of course, is the love described by Emery in the quote above. Love, in it’s truest form, the kind of love parents have for their children. A new love I personally experienced when I became a mother; a love I still struggle to put into words. Attempting to capture this love for the Lee family in Taiwan, through the “thousand and one actions,” was an unforgettable experience and we look forward to documenting this family as they grow. Lee Family, thank you for inviting us to Taiwan and for opening yourselves up to us and our cameras. See you at Disney World!