April 5 is my eldest son’s birthday. It is China's Qingming Festival and Western Easter. Since he is one year old, for every birthday, I take a group of birthday photos for him. Those photos are his growth record.
In 2015, his first birthday. He was born and I was gifted a Nikon full picture camera by my husband. At that time, I didn't know how to use it. I took the birthday photos with the help of the automatic transmission of my mobile phone. In 2016, his two-year-old birthday, I had studied photography for one year. During this period, I got pregnant again and gave birth to my second child. Those photos were taken on the 31st day after I gave birth to my second child ~ I carefully chose a tulip field, which is an hour's drive away from home. The shooting time was at noon. I was very satisfied with this group of photos at that time, but now it seems that the child's face is too seriously stained by balloons. In 2017, his third birthday. My first son was infatuated with all kinds of cars. Every time he passed the construction site at home, he wanted to drive this excavator. I borrowed the site from the construction workers, took this group of photos for him. At this time, my shooting style changed quite a bit. In 2018, his four-year-old birthday. No professional birthday photos, because I was pregnant with the third child. Pregnant vomiting was serious and I took care of two kids. I used all my energy to hold this birthday party for him. It's his first birthday party. In 2019, his fifth birthday. In the Spring, we went back to China to live for three months. The photos were taken on the roof of my hometown at dusk with a bit of haze. Now when I see this group of photos, I will think of the slight wind and the bustle of water and horses when I took photos for them. In 2020, his 6-year-old birthday. In March, the pandemic broke out in the United States. Wearing a mask, I took my son to the kindergarten where he hasn’t gone back ever since and then brought him to the familiar space needle and the parking market in Seattle. These places are always bustling, but in this special period, they become empty, In 2021, the 7th birthday. The children have grown up so much. We went to the University of Washington at about 8 a.m. I took photos of his seventh birthday under beautiful cherry trees. Those photos show my growth in photography every year. Seeing these photos, I always recall his growth and myself, from being a full-time unemployed mother at home to finding my own interests and hobbies, studying photography assiduously, becoming a photographer, and now being a photography teacher... As my children grow up, my photography will get better and better year after year. Let's all live a better and better life.