All families

    Since my divorce three years ago, I have been passionate about representing families outside the “traditional family” structure and its values.

    A year ago, my son said to me, after refusing to invite friends over: “Well, we aren’t really a family”. Explaining to me that he felt weird inviting his friends over to a home that didn’t “look” like a family home.

    Of course, that cut deeply. It hurt to hear him say that, but I could understand why. We are bombarded with images of the nuclear family ideal and most often the closer you are to the norm of two parents and two kids, the more adequate you feel. {what makes you feel Inadequate are questions like: sooo, when are you having kids? Don’t you want your son to have a baby sister or brother? Are you thinking of having a third? – You get it}.

    In general, if you live outside the norm, there is a survival instinct that kicks in: you either decide to force yourself into the norm, or go against the grain. Both are extremely taxing on the body and mind. But going against the grain has one perk: freedom to be who you are, now.

    My son, who is 10, just wants to be normal, he wants to fit in. It feels safe, and good.  He doesn’t want to be different. Since then, it’s gotten better. He invites his friends over, and it feels good.

    As a mom, I want to recreate a NEW NORM. Make what is “different” today, the new normal. We are getting there, but we still need more visual representation.

    As a photographer, my goal is to REPRESENT ALL FAMILIES.

    Families like mine, and the ones I grew up in (my parents are divorced and live in two very different countries/cultures!).

    My son and I ARE a family. I’m still working on saying this! Societal norms are strong. And representation matters.

    What is a family? What is home? BIG questions. NO easy answer.

    I believe that no matter what the structure and dynamic, a family gives you a sense of belonging.

    I LOVE photographing extended families, reconstituted families, same-sex families, community living, adoption etc, etc, etc…..

    Do you know a family who would be interested in participating in this documentary series? Let me know, and share this post with them !


    This photo session is part of a larger series that I started before the pandemic, documenting family structures that are different from the normative family structure we are used to seeing placarded everywhere, from magazines, to instagram feeds, to Facebook posts, books, tv  and more.


    PREV. POST NEXT POST Black and white image of a family in their home. The parents are kissing and the children are having fun running around them.
    Nicole Seguin Photography
    August 22, 2022