when hummingbirds land

“But why is he trying to kill the baby?”

Some idiot asked the other day, “But why is he trying to kill the baby?”


So, I guess I need to explain, lest this image is wasted on another who cannot see.

Daniel has been a friend of mine for over a decade - he's one of the first I called to announce each of my pregnancies over that decade. Being a mother is the greatest joy (and trial, and defining action) I have on this earth, so when he told me that he and his wife Jocelyn were having their first baby, I was ecstatic! I made it very clear that I wanted to photograph them - if they would have me.

When I got to their house they were hanging out in bed with their little guy just doing their Saturday morning. When I caught this moment, Daniel and I were having a conversation and sharing memories. There was no posing, no pretense, no posturing - just hanging out.

Being with them that morning, in their element, I realized that what I knew of him as a friend and person translated completely into who he was as a brand new father. As long as I have known him, Daniel has been so sure of who he is and his strength as a person, and even as a new dad, he shows no hesitation. His grip on his baby is so sure, so strong, so steady, and natural to him. The most amazing thing is, I swear that baby looks like he feels so secure and safe and like he’s ready to follow in his father’s footsteps, because he has his father to hold him up. This shows so much of who my friend is. It describes him in a way that I cannot do with words. For me, it is a portrait of a man, and not just a photo of him and his baby.

This image, by far, defines who I am as a photographer more than any other. There is so much expressed in this little rectangle. I don’t care if you love it or hate it; I care that it tells a story.

Beth Rose GoinComment