WE LOVE THIS FAMILY. They eat burgers with us and see Weezer with us and talk with us about friend things and are friends. Cat and Mitchell have been with us for a long time (5 times!), and Cameron has now been with us two times! Together, they all have the best colors of Converse shoes. Cat and Mitchell always have impeccable taste in glasses, and while Cameron isn’t there yet, I fully expect a super cool pair on him at some point in the future, even if they’re fake. Anyway – this year we took their family pictures at the Greensboro Science Center, which was gracious enough to grant us permission for a documentary-style family session there. We followed them through all their favorite exhibits: penguins, sting rays, giant aquarium with a shark who was really good at following photo cues, and a 2001 Space Odyssey style hallway that contained a singular ad for Big Bird which, from what we can tell, is one of Cameron’s favorite parts of the museum. We saw a red panda who defiantly turned away from me once I started clenching my teeth and talking to him in a high-pitched voice about his cuteness. We walked through some colored smoke that made Cameron look like a toddler-God. We took pictures with dinos and green screens and prisms. Then we ate garlic fries and all was right with the world. We’re happy to take pictures and explore with these guys, and so happy to call them our friends.

I can solidly say that no other assignment has had us listening to this much Men Without Hats. I think we listened to the Safety Dance at least a dozen times, each time accompanied by Finn doing the Wheels on the Bus circular hand motions while bouncing up and down for completely inexplicable reasons. He was thrilled. This child CANNOT GET ENOUGH Men Without Hats. On vinyl, no less! He went right to the record shelf and picked out the record, promptly dropped it, then picked it up again and ran to the record player because he is a hipster child. I say this with love. But he is an audiophile, has impeccable wardrobe choices, is in possession of several vintage childhood books, and drives an unusual-shade-of-green-colored Jeep. His popsicles are also made out of things like bananas and kale. I’m just saying… he’s an adorable hipster of a 2 year-old.

In addition to Men Without Hats, he also enjoys this one song that came programmed into his Jeep. It’s super strange, oddly somber for a child’s toy, but sounds kind of like a teenage version of Journey’s Faithfully. Definitely a breakup song. And when he’s done with the Safety Dance, he cools down to that one, accompanied by slower, sadder Wheels on the Bus hand motions. When he’s done feeling sorry for himself for whatever imaginary breakup he’s going through, he heads straight to his kiddie pool to pick up a cup and then literally pour a ton of water straight into his eyes. He does this repeatedly (always aiming for the top of his head but not quite having the rotator cuff range yet so landing directly into the eyes) and then shakes like he’s about to explode with joy. I think he’s cold, but it’s a delighted cold, so it comes across as enthusiastically explosive.

So basically, Finn is one of my all-time favorite children. I also love his parents, Heather and Garrett, whose maternity session we photographed back in 2016 while Finn was still in utero. They have a beautiful house that’s adorably decorated because Heather is an incredible designer and also because they, too, love Invader Zim. They have two flufferistic doggos, Mabel and Castle, who like to follow Finn around and look for food he’s currently dropping, and do zoomies around the house. When we left, Finn pressed his entire face up against the glass like I’ve really only ever seen in television shows because he’s the most amazing kid ever. He also blew me kisses immediately upon my arrival and departure. He did not blow kisses to Geoff, but rather stood super close to him while doing the Wheels on the Bus hand motions and staring directly into his eyes. Not sure what this meant but it was also great. YOU CAN DANCE IF YOU WANT TO.

 

A Family Session.