I was hired to shoot footage and photos of a child’s birthday party, the fancy kind you don’t experience that often given the expense and planning involved. Needless to say it is for the superrich. It was a real blowout and I got the job from a friend. I usually do weddings but thought I would enjoy a change of pace. Kids pose different problems in that they don’t hold still for long, but I would solve this dilemma by sticking with candids. The event was in the enormous backyard of a local mansion, the kind that rivals Hugh Hefner’s place. He has a pool and grotto, zoo, walking trails, guest housing, expansive lawns and party facilities. This place was less hip but was a great venue for a celebration. There was a huge custom birthday cake, tons of cookies and cupcakes, magical dancers, a band, and more.

They brought in a pony and the kids took turns going up and down the street. At one side of the driveway was a llama. Why not a camel? A bouncy house was not present as it was considered too commonplace. I was a bit floored by the apparent snobbery, but as it turns out, I was wrong. It turns out that they have a large outdoor trampoline for their kids in a corner of the backyard, much like one of these: https://www.trampolinechoice.com/best-outdoor-trampolines-kids/. No wonder! I had jumped to conclusions, silly me. There was a lot going on and it seemed like the kids were tearing about like bees in a swarm. Some were in costumes and some had party masks. The food was underway but the draw of the trampoline was greater so I planted myself in front of it and clicked away. Sooner or later every guest in the place showed up to either jump or watch. It is not difficult to capture things in motion if you use a camera that features all the necessary settings. People who rely on cell phones don’t know what I mean, although these ubiquitous devices aren’t bad. Just set them to “video” mode and go.

Everyone, kids and adults alike, seemed to be having so much fun and I captured it with a battery of videos and photos. If they have an Instagram account, they can go wild. Meanwhile, I knew that I would be forwarding the best of my work to their mailing list by email. They would also be posted on Facebook. An extravaganza like this needs professional documentation. I knew just what to do. During the fun and festivities, I was on track to a new phase of my career. Kids are energetic and dynamic and they exhibit the most amazing facial expressions. It is the best fodder for the camera’s eye. I took many more photos than I had expected. They are not the kind that go in an album like a wedding, but they will bring back wonderful memories in years to come.