Sometimes, the most memorable moments happen during the daily clatter of life. Especially when they involve children.

Those adorable half-asleep eyes in the early morning hours. A serious case of giggles at bath time. The excitement after scoring a soccer goal. Even a temper tantrum, in hindsight.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports many parents are preserving those candid minutes forever – not by grabbing the family point-and-click but by hiring a personal photographer to follow and shoot their children doing everyday activities.

Known as lifestyle or documentary portraiture, the snapshots look like the stuff of first families – often with price tags worthy of a head of state. Full-day sessions with kiddie paparazzi and the resulting coffee-table-quality books can run into tens of thousands of dollars.

Wedding and Portrait Photographers International, a trade association with more than 7,000 members, has seen lifestyle photography explode, an outgrowth of the popular, photojournalistic wedding pictures that brought spontaneity to the choreographed albums of yesteryear.

“The same photographer wants to do your engagement, your wedding, your newborn, the first birthday, the fifth birthday, everything,” said Abigail Ronck, a staff member with the Los Angeles-based association and managing editor of two trade magazines. “They want to build these relationships. It’s not a session over hours or even days. It’s over years.”

Photo by Philadelphia Inquirer.

Originally posted by Rich Whittle on March 22, 2010 in Ideas.

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