‘Safe Hands’
by Debbi Nelson

This photo is quickly becoming one of my favorites of all time. I always let clients know what I’m looking to shoot, but often, I will watch how they interact with each other. I find that just letting them be natural often results in the best shots. This beautiful child is safe between his mom and dad. Sun warms his back as though it is a guiding light that will follow and protect him throughout his life. Without specifically setting up this shot, look at how the mom and dad hold his hands. Mom holds his left hand– the hand associated with the heart– with tenderness and a softness that only moms and children share. Her hand delicately covers his not only in a touch of love and gentleness, but to demonstrate protection for her little one. Dad, on the other hand, has a different role, equally as important and loving. Dad grabs his right hand and supports it from below. Dad’s role in his child’s life will be to lift up and push his little one forward into the world. His supportive grasp demonstrates that he will always be there for his child. His son will know that Dad offers a helpful, safe place to fall if the world is difficult or unkind, but Dad will push and encourage his son to excel. It is a family shot where everyone naturally fell into their familial roles for the camera. I love it!

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