Little moments are the foundations of a lifetime. Childhood, with all its sense of wonder and fantasy, serves as the basis for who we become. For kids, it’s easy to imagine an empty box as a roller coaster, a pillow fort as a castle, and crayon art as a masterpiece.
Iwona Podlasinska, a Polish mother of two boys, has set out to elevate the quality of what otherwise could be generic family photos. As an architect by day, this mother dedicated herself to learning photography at night when her oldest son was three months old.
“Creating family albums was an important tradition in my family,” Iwona explained. “I like to make everything esthetically pleasant, so when taking photos of my own children I want them to be unique.”
As Iwona developed her personal photography style, shooting manually on relatively cheap cameras, she joined Flickr to create albums and galleries to share with her family. It wasn’t until nearly half a year later that she got a handful of followers and finally started to realize the creative power of the community on Flickr.
Now, with over 20k followers, she carefully crafts her children’s stories. “Creating that stream for me is like writing a book. My viewers know the background and the main plot – the story of happy, magical childhood. It’s also important to me that viewers see the same places, the same kids, but changing through time.”
Most of the photos in Iwona’s photostream are taken in Polish suburbia outside of Kielce, where she spends weekends and holidays with her family, a place she says is the best to take photos of the kids.
“I spend all evenings chasing [the kids] with my camera. I can let them run, even barefoot, sit on the street, or ride their bikes without having to look around all the time for any kind of danger. We feel safe there.
“To get meaningful photos of children I have to keep my mind focused on them. It’s much easier when I remind myself how I felt as a child and how I felt about the world.”