I have a great business and personal relationship with the Rivera family. It started with teaching Carlos some Mac OS X lessons last year. It continued with some more conversations about Mac hardware. Then I met the extended Rivera family while photographing a birthday party for Carlos' children. I donated a portrait package to a charity auction run by Carlos' mother. Then I got to see everyone again this year at Chris' birthday party, which was again a mix of professional and personal time.
I think most children do not naturally sit with upright posture, shoulders turned at a slight angle, eyes looking into a lens, i.e. the ideal portrait setup. Thankfully Chris and his wife let the boys be themselves and I believe 20 years from now this portrait will be much more valuable to them than if both boys were sitting perfectly still, well behaved, looking into the camera. Perhaps the photograph can also be used to do some friendly embarrassing of them in front of their future girlfriends?
There is nothing like a homemade birthday cake, and the Rivera family was kind enough to offer me a piece. When they saw how quickly I inhaled the first piece, I was offered a second to bring home with me. Having been western cake deprived for most of the 00s while living in Asia, I have been doing my best to catch up the past year and a half.
I feel very privileged to be accepted by the Rivera family and to be invited into their homes to share and photograph their family events. They have a great, warm family atmosphere among them. I look forward to the next birthday party!