May 9, 2012

Introducing … Storybook Albums!!!

Hello folks!  I know I’ve been talking about the coming of this momentous occasion for some time now.  Well, it’s finally here.  And to celebrate its long awaited arrival, this just might be a doozy of a post.  Hold on to your hats.

Why?  Well,  I’m really excited about these albums.  And when I’m excited, I tend to talk a lot.  And go off on tangents.  I’m going to show you these albums, but first I want to tell you why I think they’re so amazing, and give you a little back story on why I feel so strongly that you should have one of these, or some other tangible form of your photos, in your life.

So.  This fifth baby of mine, The Life in Your Years Photography, is really not a baby any more.  It’s well into the toddler stage, actually.  And as it has grown and evolved, I have come to realize that something has been missing.   The more sessions I do, the more I realize that many of the photos in each session — my favorites, always — are not the kind of photos whose future involves being hung over the mantle as a 30×40 gallery wrapped canvas.   Hopefully there a few of those that in each gallery.   But many, many more of them are of the type that make you stop in your tracks, smile, and think something along the lines of “I love that kooky little smirk he makes”, or “Goodness gracious, isn’t she in her glory there — she has spent the entire year in dress-up clothes!”, or simply “What a goofball!”  I love these shots.  You love these shots.  Not because your child looks especially dashing in the outfit you chose for him, but because that is WHO your kid IS right now.  Or the one of your family sitting together on the couch, one kid pulling daddy’s hair, one draped over mommy’s shoulder, one with a devilish grin reaching over to tickle his sister, and mom and dad just hysterically laughing at the chaos.  That’s it.  That’s your family right now.  That is your life right now.  You need to have that shot forever.  Because someday, that’ll be your history.  The story of your family.

So, what to do?  You could wallpaper your whole house with every print from the session.  Sure.  I can help you with that if you want, but … that option is not for everyone.  (Don’t laugh.  Have you been in my house?).  You could choose a few for your walls and buy the session DVD as a way to have all the rest.  This has been the option I have felt pretty strongly about in the past.  That slideshow.  Pretty awesome, right?  I’ll bet if I took a poll, I’d find out that I’ve put a lot of notches in my “made you cry” lipstick case with that slideshow, right?  But there’s a problem, I’m afraid, with putting all your eggs in a digital basket.  Where are you keeping that disk?  Is it in the bin with all the Dora and Team Umizoomi DVD’s in the family room by the TV?  Uh oh.  Even if you’ve got it wrapped in bubble wrap in the fire safe in the attic — what will it mean to your kids in 30 years, or to your grandkids in 60?  Will they even know what to do with it?

OK now, brace yourself for major tangent number one.

In 1997, my beautiful, amazing grandmother passed away and we, her children and grandchildren, found ourselves cleaning out the Park Slope brownstone in which she had raised her five kids.  The house had been in our family since the late 1800’s, when my great grandfather, Paul Murphy, came over from County Cork.   In the space of almost 100 years, the two family house had been inhabited by my great grandparents, their four children, and eventually those children’s families.

We found a treasure trove of photos in that old house.   Formal portraits from the 19th century.  Albums of postcards and photos sent over from Irish relatives in the early 1900’s.  Albums full of shapshots from to vacations to Havana in the 1920’s.  Albums full of family members I had never seen — some that even my dad had never even seen.  Portraits of my grandfather in his short pants, sitting with his three sisters in their dresses and giant hair bows.  Wedding photos in the 1940’s when — did you know? — they didn’t wear white dresses because of the war.  Then later that same decade, photos of babies propped up in giant prams and of toddlers peering over the rails of big wooden playpens set up in the front yard.  Boxes and boxes of photos that had been sent to my grandmother by her children as they spread out all over the world to start their families.  I remember sitting with my aunt on a rolled up carpet in the big bedroom on the second floor (“the girls room”) thinking how amazing it was that three generations of history was recorded in these boxes.

I’m not going to go crazy showing you all of them — I promise.  But, just a few.  (You really have no idea the restraint I’m showing here).

The handsome mustachioed man in blue on the right is my great grandfather, Paul Murphy.

I have no idea who these people are.

They seem to have had a lot of fun back in the ’20’s …

These albums and many, many others live in my attic now.  I’ve hung many of the photos on my own walls (maybe I’ll show you some time).  Every once in a while I’ll scan one and post it on our family blog, which is named after that old house.   These will be what my kids and grandkids will find themselves sorting though when I’m gone.  Along with these …

… all the albums and photo books I’ve put together since our first child was born in 1999.  Yes, shocker — I’m seeing that the collection grows.

Now.  End of tangent.  Without any further ado (there has been quite a lot of “ado” in this post, I know),  I’m finally going to show your the NEW Storybook Album collection that I’ll now be offering at every ordering session.    I think I’ll just show them to you, tell you what I named them and why, and promise to bring them with me the next time I’m over.

The McGuire Storybook Album

Because … “Wherever time may take you in your life, remember this was beautiful.” ~The Pat McGuire Band

Gorgeous, luxe cover materials.  Sturdy lay-flat pages.  The highest quality archival photographic paper.  Full panoramic spreads.  And an optional cute peep hole on the front cover showcasing a favorite photo from your session.  Charming and handsome — especially as part of a set. 😉


I’ll have these samples with me at every ordering session from now on so that you can see the quality for yourself.  If you are already a client, guess what?  It’s not too late to get one of these on your own shelf.   I’m offering a limited time special for albums made from past sessions — contact me for the details.


Thanks for reading!