Simple Pictures with Big Backstories of 2017

I’ve been using the phrase “simple pictures with big backstories” for a while now. Those 5 words were a 2017 divine download and could not sum up the MARIE in my work better. This has meant less emphasis on well-rounded technical skill and has anchored me in the best way. I’ve let go of trying to make work – both the context and the approach – outside of my personal values.

Meaning, I don’t have to practice layering for the sake of layering. I don’t have to try and create a universally emotion-evoking image.

If I’ve encompassed an honest experience of (my own) personal value in a picture, I’ve succeeded.

This has been HUGE. Simple pictures with big backstories. This is me. Whole-heartedly me. For myself and for my occasional clients.

If you’re curious, let me show you what that means…

These photos from 2017 are everything

The stories behind each are near and dear to me.


Every time we pull out the driveway


ALL of our secret Michigan places come to mind from this one picture


That day when it rained and they used my sweater for cover. my little ducklings.


The day we brought Gramie + Papa to the dairy farm we stumbled upon by accident that became our go-to


The view everytime we were headed out of our hood. I can FEEL this space with this picture. #bittersweet


4th of July, our day-date spot. our just-the-two-of-us experience – riverfront, coloring, pizza, & cannolis – is yet to be determined in our new state.


The day we had a hunch our move was really happening.


“Boy! boy! why he not talk to me?” – Levi


Our backyard bonfire nights. i can hear the “marshmallow” requests from their sweet voinces in this one.


She made a picture for our cat.


That beard & jawline have turned me on since 2007


That kids-are-in-bed-pizza-and-beer spot


My dad’s loving + humorous spirit in a single picture


Determined (+ scared sh*tless) to get the faces of some of my old time, no-longer-in-the-family spaces: grandma + papa’s house, 1951 -2015


I’ll probably never see that trailer + 40 acres again, sold several years ago, but remember the day grandpa + papa were gifted that saw with love and pride


Feels like home. dad’s zone.


Birthdays will never be the same after this year. I feel that change in this.


One new toy and five cousins + friends


Goodbye, my son, until TBD


You see childhood friends, I see breaking my girl’s heart from moving away from those friends she’s known since baby days.


A once famaliar scene on the last morning I stood in my bedroom doorway ready to start the day.


Goodbye, home, you’ve been wonderful.


That’s the pure Michigan sign in my side mirror and some kind of joke to see the no U-turn that trumps it. no turning back now.


Waiting for Dave to arrive with the u-hauls. I feel the pure llight + freedom I felt over the unknown of what’s to come next for our life with this.


A spot I accidentally found as a joke – taking our sassy Kendall to sassafras mountain. joke was on me, incredible view. love how “together” we are here – absolutely symbolic to our life today.


We’ve never experienced a December quite like this. 72 and sunny. bathing suits required.

And those, my friend, are my 2017 favorite simple pictures with big backstories.

Get more intentional on yours by starting a To-Remember list to first ACKNOWLEDGE these micro-values in your life. I’ve got something to help:

Grab your {free} To-Remember List Playbook here


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Marie Masse - Documentary Family Photographer

Author: MarieMasse
I help client documentary photographers fine-tune their workflow + marketing game, so their work is filled with sessions that represent their voice + client values while earning a living. I shoot undirected, off-beat stories that aren’t preserved often enough (like the story of couples before starting a fam or becoming empty-nesters – a dream project of mine), so my clients’ old box of photos is a meaningful, visual diary of their life + legacy to leave behind.

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