The importance of photography when losing someone you love

This was one of my first thought. I am a professional wedding photographer. Before that, I was a student photographer. I hold a camera in my hand since I’m 16 to document friends, parties, landscapes, news events, and finally, a bit of my family.

The day I lost my father, this was one of my first -painful- thought: I did not take a portrait of my father. And for many reasons. First, because I’m 30 years old and I thought I had so many more years with him. Second, because he did not like to have his picture taken. Third, because as we say "The shoemaker's children always go barefoot".

All these reasons do make up for the fact that I wish I had taken more pictures of him or document my family so much more than I did. I knew he was sick, and I should have taken his portrait, but I remember how I could not bear the situation of taking a picture thinking “in case he dies”.

You search, you find and you smile

Thank you Instagram back in 2013.

Thank you Instagram back in 2013.

A few days after the funeral, we started digging up on old pictures. Fortunately, our childhood vacations were fully documented by my parents and every picture of him we found was like a treasure. We smiled, we laughed, this would bring us the happiness that had been sucked up by our grief.

Like everyone else, as we grew up, we stopped taking so printing pictures during the new digital area. I look through my Instagram account, all our computers as well. I found our USA trip from 2013 and quickly printed an album.

What did my father’s passing teach me?

Memories fade, photographs do not. From our 2013 USA trip.

Memories fade, photographs do not. From our 2013 USA trip.

I’ve always loved being a wedding and family photographer but since my father’s passing a few months ago, I don’t “think”, I KNOW that my job is so important, and I know it more than my clients. When I talk to my clients who are around my age, I want to tell them: “seriously, for the love of God, please please please, make sure you hire a pro photographer to document your family and your wedding”. I am documenting memories and creating photographs that I know -from the pain and the joy of it- that they will be so happy to hold in their hands because once someone you love dies, this is all you have left.

When my clients hire me, they think about how they want the pictures to have and hold. But professional photography is so much more than that. The photographs I create are little treasures that they will dig in one day, full of tears, to remember one of their happiest moments.

Documenting your family with a "Day In The Life" Session

Documentary family photographer

A hug in the morning, the first bath, a kiss at night: all these moments deserve to be captured so they will exist forever. I started family photography when my friends and family started to have children. I love capturing these beautiful moments of life that make me smile behind the camera.

What is documentary family photography? The answer here!


What is a “Day in the Life” session?

From sunrise to sunset, I am following your beautiful family around. No need to do anything special : you wear what you usually wear, you do what you usually do, your kids play like they usually play. I’m here to capture the small moments of your everyday life. You might think that there is nothing special, until you look back to see how fast time goes by.


Why should I hire a family photographer ?

Of course, you are taking pictures of your kid all the time. But what about you. I’d like to think that your children will cherish these photos of you and them. More than that, I will capture things you might not see. As a documentary photographer, I am a storyteller. Though my camera, I will tell the story of their childhood and your parenthood with the real moments that you live every day.


Natasha Lamalle is offering Documentary Family Photography Washington DC, Maryland and Northern Virginia. Read some more ! “This Is Why You Need A Documentary Family Photographer During Your Vacation”


You are interested ? Let’s start the conversation!

Mom and dad's names *
Mom and dad's names

This is why you need a documentary family photographer during your vacation

When the baby tries to take over my job.

When the baby tries to take over my job.

A family photographer for your vacation

As a documentary photographer, I love capturing moments of your everyday life. But a family vacation is an extra special moment between you and your children.

When Sabine and Fabrice invited me on their weekend, I thought it was a great idea and the perfect occasion to immortalize their first vacation as a family of 3. I documented their big activities as well as small moments between them and their first born.

What is documentary family photography? The answer here!

Baby Camille on his dad’s shoulders during a small walk.

Baby Camille on his dad’s shoulders during a small walk.

Why have a photographer during my vacation?

The reason is simple : documenting your vacation is a way of keeping beautiful memories alive, as well as having these photos in an album to keep these precious moments forever near you.

This is also for your kids, that will one day be adults. They will have beautiful pictures of moments with you that they will be able to remember as they grow up. I wish my parents would have done that, that is why I love doing family photography : to make sure that I can capture these memories for you, your children, your grand-children.

We have a camera so why hire a professional photographer ?

First, if not obvious, is that you cannot be in front of and behind the camera! But the main reason to hire a photographer/me, is the unique point of view that I will have during our session. As a trained photojournalist, I know how to tell a story through images.

Family vacations are my best memories with my parents. This is when we laughed the hardest, I bonded with my brother, and we shared incredible experiences together. I want to make sure that these feelings are passed to you, through my photographs.

family session photography.jpg

I love to play with emotion, gestures, light and shadows, to capture powerful , and funny, moments.

family photography black and white.jpg

Wether you are going away for a weekend or for several weeks, allow me to be part of your family for one day to immortalize your best laughs.

Contact me To see more pictures click here.

Mom and dad's names *
Mom and dad's names

Documentary family photography: why it is the best way to capture your family

I am specialized in documentary photography. There is several way to capture your family, and posing isn’t my thing. If it’s yours, good for you, but I won’t be any help!


What is documentary family photography?

Documenting a family is telling a story of your daughter, your son, your spouse. Storytelling is the main focus for a documentary family photographer.

What is storytelling? I really love the definition of : “Storytelling involves a two-way interaction between a storyteller and one or more listeners. The responses of the listeners influence the telling of the story. In fact, storytelling emerges from the interaction and cooperative, coordinated efforts of teller and audience.” This is not just me taking pictures. You need to trust me, to know me. And I’m just the same, I need to know you to be able to photograph who you are on an ordinary day.

Photographe documentaire de famille

Why should you choose documentary family photography?

Kids will be kids right? And that’s what I love about them. Once they are familiar with a camera around, they just are.

They stop being self aware of the camera and they stay themselves. Trying to pose a 2 year-old could be just a torture for her or him, the parents and the photographer. So going with documentary photography will make strong and candid photographs of you and your family.

Family photographer in Washington DC

How documentary family photography differs from lifestyle ?

Lifestyle is one moment, a short and flying moment. We choose a background, your clothes, maybe even directing a little. Documenting has barely any directing. For a one-hour session, maybe I will provide some direction while still leaving your family play and be itself in your house, or in a place that means something for your family. For a Day in the life session, there is no posing, no direction. Just me and my camera, capturing candid moment that will still happen if I wasn’t here.

You can contact your documentary family photographer in Washington DC, Virginia and Maryland : You can look at my portfolio here.

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Documenting a family vacation in California

I feel so lucky that I could capture all these moments with this trip of a lifetime. Just the four of us. It was one of the best trip of my life. With my family that I love more than anything.

Note for clients : If you go to your "trip of a lifetime" type of vacation, you can bring me with you! Prices starts at 700$ for one day. Contact me at


Family session of my family in Monterey Bay (CA)

My favorite photo session are with my family! I loved that I can catch every little moments of our gathering. With my tripod, I just try to do my best to get moments of us.

It is hard because I hate being in front of the camera. The irony : I was the least "natural" looking whereas I was harassing my parents and sibling to do so. Oh well !

Here are some snaps of our trip in California !