Around this time, 2 years back, I made the visit home to showcase my newborn son to my family in Birmingham…in particular, my mother, father, and sisters. It was a great visit and everybody immediately fell in love with Ashton. The highlight of the 2-week trip, which included a week visiting my mother-in-law just outside of Atlanta, was a photoshoot that I participated in with my father and son. It produced one of the most cherished keepsakes in my possession. That brings me to this week’s moment in the Flashback Friday series: the Appear Photography generational photo.
How I first came across this moment? The idea for the generational photo actually goes back to April 3, 2018. Mercedes basically nagged me until I took a picture of her and her mother with the newborn version of Ashton. For them, it was 3 generations—grandmother, mother, son. Knowing we had the trip down South in the mid-to-late part of June, I talked to my father about participating in a photoshoot. As I was researching photo poses, I put “father-son-grandson” in my Google search and one of the images that popped up was of a father holding a picture frame with a picture of his son who was holding a picture of his son. When I met with Lori Cummings at Appear Photography in June, I told her that I was willing to give her artistic freedom in the photoshoot but I absolutely wanted a photo where my father was holding a picture of me while I was holding a picture of Ashton. She made it happen.
What it meant to me then? The photoshoot happened on June 11, 2018. With the post-processing I discussed with Lori, I didn’t expect the images to get back for at least a week. But she was very diligent in getting the photos back to me as quickly as possible…like the next day as quickly as possible. I was absolutely shocked when I saw the generational photo. It was far better than I even imagined. I felt a bit emotional looking at it. In that photo, I didn’t just see my father and my son with me sandwiched in between. I saw 3 generations of oldest living sons. That meant a lot to me.
What it means to me now? Some 2 years later, the photo is one of my all-time favorites. With Father’s Day on the horizon, I’m gifting my father with an actual canvas print of the photo that he will no doubt prominently feature in his residence. The image itself still means the same to me today as it did 2 years ago. As Ashton is growing and better understanding the world around him, I plan on sitting him down and explaining to him the significance of the photo. Hopefully, in 20 years or so, we’ll all be able to come back together for another generational photo…this time with Ashton’s son as the baby.