it's all about me · organising /good ideas at the time · remembering / musing · Uncategorized

Psyching myself up for the family portrait

Being fifty-something, I’m starting to think that there are already too many photo’s of me in this world.

If I was never captured on film (or in pixels) again, the world wouldn’t shift from its axis and I’d be happy enough to be remembered by my pre-fifty-something snapshots. Which is saying something … most of them are shockers.

Let’s face it … who becomes more photogenic with age?

That’s why it was left to the younger generation to suggest we engage a professional photographer to capture a family portrait.

My niece E tells me she was inspired by this earlier blogpost of mine.

Maybe I should have thought that one through more.

How could we say “no”? E was organising it all, had picked a tentative date and had the perfect photographer worded up.

Next Sunday is the day.

It’s looming like an ominous, dark thunderhead on the not-so-far-off horizon.

I’m not ready.

I haven’t lost that 15kg I’d hoped to. (I know: there is not enough spandex in this hemisphere to fix that by Sunday.)

I haven’t grown long flowing Rapunzel-style locks.

I’m looking untanned (some might say pale and wan; I probably have a vitamin D deficiency, to boot).

I haven’t had that crown replaced on that molar (the one that’s been missing now for more than two years).

I feel a pimple coming on just near my lip (surely one outgrows pimples by fifty-something?)

I don’t have a stunning super-photogenic outfit in my wardrobe (not one that fits, anyway).

Still, we have a very loose dress-code, which I’m hoping will work in my favour.

I’m thinking black. Sleek. Slimming. Fade-into-the-background. Invisible.

Maybe a splash of colour to draw attention away from … well, everything.

In a group photo, getting the outfits right hardly ever happens. I just hope we can avoid something like this:

Photo credit:

Or this:

Photo credit:


Sunday is looming fast. I’ve mentally noted some tips for the day (to hopefully avoid some of those inevitable “why didn’t I just …?” moments after the event, when the portraits have been printed in super-size and framed underglass for future generations to view).

Come click-time, I’ll be:

  • standing tall
  • sucking my belly in
  • pushing my chin out and head forward (to unfold those extra chins and swan-ify my neck)
  • hiding my chicken-feet hands behind my back
  • turning slightly to the side (obviously)
  • attempting a graceful ballet-girl stance of some sort (but probably toppling over)
  • jostling for a position at the back (but probably toppling over)
  • fluffing some volume into my hair at the sides
  • checking I don’t have a cocky’s crest of spiky hair on top
  • slapping on some lip gloss (lots of it)
  • trowelling concealer all over that pimple
  • smiling as graciously, genuinely and widely as I can without revealing the toothy gap or emphasising the crow’s feet

Mostly, I’ll be looking skywards and hoping with all my might for the clouds to part and a shaft of Doris-Day-lens-perfect-softening-light to shine its loving little heart down on us.

All of us.

Bring it on.

Do you suppose she has a pimple on her chin? Photo credit:

9 thoughts on “Psyching myself up for the family portrait

  1. Oh Shez! Love this post. Sorry I have caused so much angst. It will be worth it. I’m sure you’ll be thanking me when we get the edited proofs back… maybe… hopefully. 🙂

    1. Aha, Niece E! I don’t blame you at all … I have cooked this angst up in my head. Alll by myself. I’m sure the photo’s will be lovely. I’m just awkwardly insecure. 🙂 xox

  2. Arent you just a gem! It was like reading all my thoughts online. We’ll be fine…once we get there! Is 10am on a Sunday morning too early for a few glasses of ‘dutch courage’?
    See you there!

    1. You will be just fine, Katy, you gorgeous young thing! But just to be sure, I definitely encourage some “Dutch courage” … I’ll see if I can smuggle in a flask of something “brave”. I just saw that E said “edited” proofs in her comment above … so a toast to PhotoShop is definitely in order. 🙂

  3. Ditto…ditto….ditto!! I’ll be up the back, praying that the photographer has the Doris Day lens firmly fixed. Surely it won’t be that bad…….

    1. Looks like you and I have dibs on the back row then, Kez! I’m sure it will be fine. I’m relying heavily on the photographer’s talent … I hear she’s pretty ace and surely she’s dealt with the likes of our lot before. See you in the back row! 🙂 xox

  4. How are the four of us going to be in the back row in the sisters photo? I think that’s the one that will be difficult! No big bloke or little kids to hide behind!

    1. Good point, Sister J. I’ve given it some thought … given we’ll be at the gardens, maybe we can hide behind a hedgerow or shrubbery of some sort … or a fountain or a rotunda. Or poke our heads around sideways from behind a big-trunked tree? We might have to get creative on this one. Sister RH can possibly provide some art direction (along with the photographer, of course). Thanks for popping by. See you Sunday. 🙂 xox

  5. I always jostle for a position in the back. That works for me because at 5′ 2″ I’m always out of the picture.

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