Not Your Mama’s Christmas Cards – Katy Houston Photographer
I simply MUST share my favorite new Christmas Tradition with you. If you do something twice during the holidays and you enjoy it, it becomes a tradition, right?
THIS is how the Wallace Family of Katy, Texas rolls!
Seriously, they’ve got to be the FUNNEST Christmas Family in Texas.
You see, It all started when Mom, Jenny, called in 2017 looking for a fun and unique family Christmas card. They had a general concept in mind, but needed a pro to help them pull it off. Oh my goodness! It was exactly the project that had been bubbling in my own brain for quite a while, and suddenly these people just called me to create it! How does that even happen? Did I ever tell you how much I LOVE my job?
As we began planning for our session, I reached out to one of my photography instructors and friends, Dan McLanahan. Dan is very well-known in professional circles for his amazing skills and talents, but my brain at this time was all-consumed by the reknown “Friday Night Food Fight” composite that he had created a year before. Click on this link to check it out! Dan gave me some pointers to help make our session go smoothly, and he also offered a gentle but extremely helpful critique during the post-production stages of Christmas Kitchen Chaos 2017.
The magic of a project like this comes in compiling several photographs until one composite image is complete. I don’t know what part of this scenario I enjoyed the most.
It could have been Scott’s flaming skillet. (Yes we used real fire).
Or Jenny’s flying flour which looked so realistic because the sons hid behind the island throwing flour and mashed potato flakes into the air until we captured our perfect messy cloud.
Maybe it was Braden’s athletic skills catching a football mid-air with his LEFT hand so that we could still see his face –HOW MANY TIMES?
Josh’s feigned boredom with the whole scenario absolutely cracked me up because it couldn’t have been further from reality. In fact, he offered keen thoughts, insight, and even served as a voice-activated lightstand throughout the session both last year and this year.
However, the story I LOVE to tell about this shoot is about the family dog, Brinkley. This dog is so well-trained that he absolutely refused to steal the lasagna off the counter. In order to make that scenario happen, we had to send dad to another part of the house while Jenny and the sons coerced and tempted him.
This was my first ever attempt at a relatively complex composite image, and it was so much fun. The Christmas card recipients started asking what this year’s card would look like, and the Wallaces quickly realized that they couldn’t ever go back to a traditional smiling family portrait card.
When they called me this year, we sat down together and brainstormed until we came up with a new concept.
Deck the Halls — Wallace Style
The family has actually experienced a couple of real-life falling Christmas tree incidents, so they knew that their friends and relatives would understand the significance.
Everyone maintained their basic persona from 2017. Jenny’s tripping over her own enthusiasm, and so surprised that she’s practically juggling the ornaments as they smash to the floor. Josh is once again absorbed in his technology and light untangling mess. Braden’s adding Santa to the top of the tree — Elf Style. And of course we’ve got Scott, once again about to burn down the house with his Griswold-inspired electrical connection.
We even included last year’s card on the television screen at the back of the room.
Best memory from this year’s photography session? The pure thrill on the guys’ faces when they got to actually throw glass ornaments up into the air, allowing them to smash on the ground. Josh said it was the one thing that you’re always told not to do.
“Don’t drop the ornaments, don’t let them break, be careful with them. Don’t make a mess.”
But on this one day we shattered ornaments on the floor and made a royal mess.
Merry Christmas from SPCcreative Photography via The Wallace Family.
I will let one little secret out of the bag.
We’ve already started planning for 2019.
What will it be? I’ll never tell.