A few days ago I read a great blog post on Clickin’ Moms about a photographer who spared her children the agony of posing for pictures, for a while, and snapped photos of their toys instead. I loved this idea because I’ve always been a bit sad about favorite toys that were left in the dust. I knew my first toy photo had to be “The Guys” that my little boy loved so much.
The Guys are Baby and Bubba. Bubba is the doggy on the left. My son was given to him by one of my husband’s co-workers when he was born. He couldn’t say puppy, when he was learning to talk, and it came out as Bubba. Bubba was his absolute favorite toy and I was always afraid he would forget Bubba at daycare and we’d be in a world of hurt at bedtime. I thought that we might be able to find a second Bubba to keep on-hand, but the closest thing I could find was a little bear with the same color of fur. The animal I thought would become a replacement in case of emergency, became the other half of a bonded pair. The bear was named Baby and he became one of The Guys.
My son left The Guys behind many years ago, but I’ve always saved them. He carried them everywhere for years and I still get a little choked up remembering my little boy.
On a photography note, I thought it would be fun to get my son in the shot too. I knew he wouldn’t pose with The Guys, so I just set them on the porch when he was out shooting hoops. It kind of shows what he left them behind for. Life for my son is now about sports and not stuffies. sniff, sniff
Now, I’d like you to meet Bubby. When my daughter was born, her big brother wanted to bring her a Bubba at the hospital. We searched and searched… with no luck. The Ty company had discontinued this type of stuffed animal. Luckily, they had this great online marketplace called Ebay, and we found it online. Big Brother brought Bubba to the hospital and gave it to his sister. Lamby became her Bubba’s mate for life, and somehow it was just easier to call them Lamby and Bubby.
(Side story: My daughter took Lamby and Bubby everywhere she went and slept with them every night. There were a few nights when she had hidden Lamby and Bubby or put them in a special place and so she had to sleep with something else. So, we figured Lamby and Bubby were just hiding somewhere when we could find them for a few days. Well, days became weeks and she was getting distraught. We tore the house apart looking for those guys, with no luck. They were missing for about a year, when I was tucking her into bed at her cousin’s house, on the other side of the state from our house. I peeked over at the stuffed animal pile and thought I saw a familiar tail sticking out. I honestly think I screamed. I couldn’t believe we found them after a full year of being missing! At least they were in good hands at her cousin’s house for a year. )
My photography note on Bubby’s picture is that I wanted capture where Bubby lives now. My daughter is 10 now and doesn’t always sleep with stuffed animals. Most of the time, Bubby stays tucked under a blanket by her bed (another gift from one of my husband’s co-workers). I always think it’s sweet when she takes Bubby to sleepover though.
Finally, for my last toy shot, I couldn’t resist the Seahawks Build-A-Bear. I found him shoved in a drawer and it seems like a perfect time to bring him out. Now I am officially the only one in the house without a Seahawks jersey. Even the stuffed bear has a jersey! (If I buy one, I’m buying a Gilliam jersey. He’s the guy who caught the first touchdown of the playoff game two weeks ago. He didn’t get enough credit for that, so I’d buy his jersey. Go Gilliam!!)
I really did enjoy taking pictures of the kids’ old toys. I tried to set them up like real photoshoots, making sure I liked the lighting. It was a really cloudy day, but the tripod helped.
Happy toy photography!