Many families found their routines altered this year. All right, almost all families…

Maybe a weekend in the country turned into a week.

Or, in some cases a month turned into three. That’s how it was for the family of four I photographed recently along a section of the Windham Path on the outskirts of Windham, New York in Greene County.

The family had come to the mountains seeking a little refuge from the din down below and ended up falling in love with the area. Not hard to do, I know. I moved to Tannersville and lived there less than a year when I started looking around for a place to make  my relocation permanent.

Shortly before they were scheduled to return to the city, they decided to capture the way the mountains made them feel with a family portrait session. They found me, Jonathan Ment Photography, through a web search and we connected.

We talked about locations, from a farm they frequented where one of their boys enjoyed riding the ponies, to private properties and eventually they chose the Windham Path  where they took frequent walks during their time on the Mountaintop.

Whenever I get the chance to work with a family for portraits like these, I always encourage the parents to stand for a few of their own as well as allowing a little time for breakout sessions with the children. After all, when you’ve dressed for pictures and picked the perfect-weather afternoon to get them done outdoors, why not cover all the bases?

I’ve worked with a lot of children over years, not just at family reunions and during portrait sessions, but at weddings – where reluctant ring bearers and flighty flower girls are basically the norm. I’ve also spent a lot of time with big bearded guys wearing red suits, during a stint as a mall photo set manager.

 I photographed a different couple on the Windham Path (link) for their engagement photos back in February of this year. Later, I enjoyed seeing one of those pictures featured on a card sent through the mail. Even though I can facilitate photo prints and photo gifts, albums and more, often clients create their own with the images they own after hiring me.

It’s called ‘rights included photography,’ at least that’s what I call it. You’re paying me for my time and in most cases, you’re buying your photos. Sure, I can help with prints. You can order them from your gallery at jonathanment.com and they’ll be printed by one of the professional labs I contract with.

BUT you also receive the digital files, so we’re not tethered forever. Get the picture?

Back to the path: Photographing this family during a pandemic, I found only a few aspects of the shoot foreign. Wearing a mask when walking past other visitors, for instance, that was new. I’ve mostly just avoided public settings to the extent possible this year. Also new was having the father volunteer to make an adjustment to one of the little ones, where I’d normally have reached in and touched an elbow to help with “right and left” during informal posing.

Whatever the challenge or minor inconvenience, I have got to say it was nice being behind the lens again. Everyone was in excellent spirits. When a set-up looked good with the children, the grownups asked for a turn in the same location.

Smiles were overflowing and our late-afternoon session made for the most cooperative lighting I’ve enjoyed this year.

The mother informed me the next day was her birthday and asked if quick turnaround was a possibility. I had the photo package delivered by noon the next day!

I’m flexible. Whether it’s the way you need to structure a wedding package or engagement sessions, the sort of scheduling you need for portraits or real estate photography, or a tight timeline you’re hopeful for on delivery, together we work to find what is best for you.

Thanks for reading. Reach out, if I can be of any help. You can also find, follow & like Jonathan Ment Photography on Facebook and at www.catskillsphotographer.com and check out the broad-topic’d “Observational Ramblings” of the Ment Media Group’s “Business Blog.”

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