So, about this photography thing...
For as long as I can remember, I have been framing the world into compositions. Long before I owned my first camera, I would sit in the backseat of my parents' car, peering through the square hole of the seatbelt tongue and framing the world beyond the window. Framing the world this way gave me control over my experience: leave out the ugly, include the pretty. .
Over the years, I had a series of cameras placed in my hand, and still I chose to focus on the beauty and leave the unsightly beyond the frame. I also did a lot of this in my personal life--pretending all was rosy, even when there were times when life was anything but.
Now, however, time and the realities of life have invaded my vision and experience. Motherhood, with all of it’s messiness and gritty realities, happened. I'm no longer interested in ignoring the less-than-picture-perfect details. Instead, I choose to find the beauty among them. I want to embrace the unique, the slightly crooked, the well-weathered, the scarred. I want to see the world exactly as it is, and actively search for the beauty among the mess.
I know that one day, when my children have moved from home and I have nothing but echoes of their youthful shrieks and giggles lingering in my home, I won’t really cherish that stiff portrait of us all standing on the beach. Instead, it will be the photo of my daughter, sleeping in the early morning light, her hair curling softly over her shoulder, that makes my heart contract. Although the Christmas card portrait of us all standing in a row has its place, it is the image of my son’s crooked smile, skinned knees and scuffed tennis shoes as he plays baseball with his dad that will truly thrill me. The days are long, but the years are short, and I want to preserve these precious days as best I can.
My desire as your photographer is to spend a few minutes grabbing that posed portrait to share with grandma, if that’s what you really want—but then, I want to really capture your family, where they are RIGHT NOW. Your daughter’s scrunched-nose giggle. Your son’s jack-o-lantern grin as he climbs his daddy’s shoulders. Your kids jumping into an unforseen mud puddle in their portrait finest, to your horror. The sparkle in your eye as you gaze lovingly into your toddler’s eyes and whisper, “I love you.” This is how we freeze time. This is the true magic of photography: preserving childhood and the story of your family, in all of it’s messy glory, for the ages. If you'd like a little of this magic in your life, please reach out by email, contact form or social media. I can't wait to meet you and capture the unique details of your beautiful family--in all of its messy, imperfect glory.
Angela Parker is a primarily natural-light photographer currently located in Lithia, Florida, part of the extensive Tampa Bay area. A professional nomad, she has lived and traveled across the U.S. and enjoys using photography to document her adventures. Previously an attorney, Angela discovered her love for photography in 2013 after the birth of her children. When she isn’t gazing through a viewfinder or designing graphics for the nonprofit Forget the Frock, she enjoys hiking with her children; traveling with her husband, Brad; searching out eclectic neighborhood restaurants; and experimenting with mixology.
About the Name
For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. -Matthew 7:14
As a Christian woman, this verse contains great meaning to me. It is a reminder that the path I have chosen as a follower of Christ is narrow–it isn’t popular, and it certainly isn’t easy, but it is rich in love and grace and relationship.
But this verse also reminds me to look up, look around, and try to find the true path in life. You see, it is easy to blindly follow the path of least resistance. To follow the masses, trudging forward through our days, chained to our cell phones, texting as we stumble to get from point A to B. There is a better way to travel, but you have to search for it. You have to look up, take notice, study the lay of the land and concentrate on where you place your feet. You have to truly see the world around you, for all of its beauty and ugliness and weirdness. It is why I lug a camera and lenses with me everywhere, it is why I throw my energy into capturing the smallest of moments of beauty each day. I want to follow that faint trail and find that tiny gate into a life of meaning and true happiness, and along the way, invite those who wander blindly to join me in sharing the journey.