Family Documentary Photography: Parenthood, Volume II

The response at our first documentary parenthood collection was overwhelming, so we wanted to publish a follow up collection. 

I asked my group of photographers - what does parenthood look like? What are the quintessential images you've made that capture this incredible role? 14 more incredible photographers wanted to show you how beautiful documenting your real, incredible life can be. 

Let us know in the comments which one is your favorite. <3

1. Eden Photography | 

Letting go of inhibitions and just BEING with your children.  Play. Laugh. Be silly.  Follow their lead - they will take to you magical places. This is where the joy of parenthood lies.


Parenthood is never having a meal to yourself and being perfectly okay with that.

3. Shea Kluender |

Parenthood is elusive. It's overwhelming. It's everything. It's not always as natural as it seems like it should be, and certainly never as pulled-together as it appears from the outside. Parenthood is the ride - it's the exhaustion and the worry and the hand holding and the wrestling and the knowing looks and the miscommunications and the attempts to build routine and rhythm and the spontaneous tickle fights and everything in between. Parenthood brings all of my most honest emotions up to the surface. Every day makes me feel more alive.

4. Katie Hill |

1. parenthood is living in your car 9 months a year

2. coworkers

3. it's like looking in the mirror

5. Lisa R. Howeler |

I love how this mom, who had a newborn and four older children, all under the age of 9 at the time, is still smiling, through exhaustion, at her toddler who keeps popping in to ask questions even as mom tries to find time for a breather.

6. Adriana Silva |

Parenthood is being there for them at all times. And sometimes, just being there is enough.

Parenthood is messy. It's dirty dishes and toys everywhere and never ending laundry piles. It's constantly asking your kids to help clean up. And most of the time they complain or ignore you or do a half-assed job. But sometimes, sometimes you get lucky and they help without being asked. And it's when that happens that you think you are doing something right. Parenthood is being thankful for little miracles and taking what you can get and looking for the light in every day despite the mess.

8. Jessica Strom |

There is an incredibly tangible feeling that comes with photographing motherhood. This photo in particular makes me catch my breath. For mom, this will be a portrait of when they still needed her; those scraped knee and bumped elbow moments that may seem small, even inconvenient at the time. For the girl, this is the safest place in the world. An embrace that can be felt from anywhere.

The tug of a quiet moment cradling your baby to sleep all in the while rejoicing in your toddler's son youthful energy may seem like a paradox, but this is is the wonder of motherhood in a frame.

10. Jessica Hachey | 

Shoe wars…do they ever end? Newborns don’t keep them on, toddler fight putting them on, toddlers then want to do it all by themselves and take FOREVER and then kids and teens leave them all over the house! Time to live barefoot on a deserted island please….

11. Lauren Webster |

This is one of my favorite self-portraits of motherhood because it captures a very accurate depiction of what our morning looks like; toddler searching for food, baby attached to me, and I'm waiting to start our morning routine after we let our dogs inside. 

Sometimes I let my toddler take a shower so I can get other things done like pump, eat, sit in a semi-quiet room. You know, the things you can't do with a toddler around.

12. Emily Henry 

Watching a child create something from nothing is awe inspiring. These are the moments you sit back and soak up who this little being is becoming, breathing in the life you have made.

Bath time has always been a special time to sit back and relax—no matter the day, it is something I always look forward to. 

13. Hannah Terry 

Some of the best conversations with my daughter are over hair washing. There is no alone time in parenthood, and that's okay with me.

14. Briony Walker |

This is my favourite humorous image that sums up 'Parenting' of small kids. You ask your child to do something, you give them the one, two, three countdown (possibly a mention about Santa Claus and/or the Easter Bunny watching), then defer to "NOW!". I am always extra thrilled to get a shot like this from a Day in the Life session because this synchronised moments are so fleeting.

So, which one resonated the most with you in this season of your life? Leave me (and the photographer) a comment below to let us know! <3

Any other collections of images you'd like to see? I want to show you - leave a comment to let me know!