By Hannah Schenker
The series features 12 mothers from her Vancouver community that she found with a kind of casting call through her business and also through an organisation she founded in 2015 called The Good Mother Project. These women were photographed in their own homes doing what they normally do with their kids.
What was the impetus to create this collection?
The idea came about one evening when I was chatting with my husband about what kind of new creative project I could create this summer. I’m a family photographer, and my summer season tends to be a bit slower, so I wanted something that would challenge me creatively, but that would also tie into my blog/online community, The Good Mother Project. When I thought about what I really wanted to capture, I kept coming back to this idea of witnessing moms and their kids, just at home and being themselves.Â So often, we get caught up in wanting to create that “picture perfect” moment – everyone dressed the same, hair and make-up done, sunlit field, all smiles and looking right at the camera.Â Those photos are beautiful, but are they really real? Do they represent real life?Â I wanted to show the beauty in the every day life as a mom.
Why is it important to show parents/mothers in their normal day-to-day life, without jazzing up anything?
Because I don’t think we realize how beautiful it really is.Â Some days it’s hard, chaotic, trying, frustrating – but all of that can be beautiful too. We work so hard as moms to display this “perfect” image – posting filtered, cropped and perfected images on social media, images that often took us 15 tries to capture! I wanted to show what motherhood was like behind this mask of perfection, and that we are all truly so similar, even if our stories are different. We all have days without make-up or a shower. We all discipline our kids. We all feed our kids. We all cuddle and kiss our kids. We all get bored. We all play on the floor. We’re all in the same boat. And I believe all of our experiences are uniquely beautiful.
How did these women feel having you take their photographs?
I was really impressed with how brave all of them were. It’s a really vulnerable thing to do to have a total stranger come to your house – a house that you’ve been asked not to tidy – and witness your real life as a mother. But they were all so incredibly welcoming and open. They let me into their lives and their homes and were so gracious and willing to talk. It was truly an honour.
Do you have children of your own?
I do! I have one little boy, Henry, who is 3.5 years old.
Thank you for sharing your photographs with us Eran!
To read all of these wonderful women’s stories, head over to Motherhood: Unfiltered.