Nest: Multi-Family Photoshoot in Connecticut

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Nest: Multi-Family Photoshoot in Connecticut by Zorz Studios

What happens when five veterinarian friends decide to bring their newly expanded families for a retreat? For this 17-people multi-family photoshoot in Connecticut, I drove 200 miles one way. The reward was a joy-packed craze of opportunities.

Vetz Are Back!!!

Does a veterinarian ring a bell to my regular readers? Remember the urban chic wedding of two vets, a veterinarian and a veteran? I later did a long maternity shoot with the tropics, smoke, police calling, and underwater for them. And then Vetto was born. (Too bad that’s not how they named him.)

Vetz: Nicki + Adam = Industrial-Chic Wedding by Zorz Studios (1)
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So here’s my Nicole, who started with a conceptual boudoir with me in 2018. A few months ago she reached out to me and said five college girlfriends—all vet school graduates—are getting together for a retreat to celebrate two occasions. First, four of them gave birth in the past year, including Nicole. The fifth one was getting proposed during that retreat, unbeknownst to her. They saw that as a perfect opportunity for a multi-family photoshoot in Connecticut, where they’d travel from CT, MD, FL, and NM to an Airbnb rental in Groton, CT on Thames River next to The Submarine Force Museum.

On to the Craziness!

How could I say “no”? Newborn and babies are prominent in my portfolio after 15 years of shooting weddings. Yet, haven’t worked with five families at the same time yet! A perfect challenge for me. A 4-hr drive isn’t the longest I’ve taken for a client and with this potential for something chaotic and fun?! I jumped on it. (Tip: you save a lot of money this way, ladies!)

Tip: you can save a lot of money with a multi-family photoshoot, ladies!

Sadly, one father got sick and couldn’t make it so I ended up working with 9 adults and 8 children. I spent half a day with them, navigating my way between the toddlers’ naps, meals, and mood swings. The idea was to get each family separately, then grouped variably. The grounds offered different backdrops, including rocks, bay shore, railroad, birch trees, decks, lawn, etc. I brought my studio light but immediately assessed it uselessness in such a dynamic setup and tight timeframe.

Individual Families

Let me start with Nicole and Adam, who made it all possible.

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Then come the next three families:

Finally, the engaged couple. Each with children already, they couldn’t wait for me to come and document the surprise proposal during the shoot, as originally envisioned. He had already proposed, but I could still add my engagement flavor to their family photoshoot.


The five girlfriends deserved their own spotlight. At a point, I was pulling off some moves that really worried them. They rushed to remind me they are veterinarians, not doctors. I still had trust in them (come on, five of them!) and carried on.

Kids, Kids, Kids!

I was aching for the craziness that comes with a multi-family photoshoot approach, especially with the little ones! First, we tried the kids. It had to be two rounds to improve the smiling part and came close…

Then I suggested a “moms shot”. You can’t imagine how much locomotion such attempts to get toddlers’ attention would involve… I can make lots of noise when it’s all on me, but thankfully, I got dads behind my back now. Got a shot for you to illustrate that, too. Threw dads in the mix afterwards.

Next, I asked what they thought about a flying babies shot. Some barely took off, but I grabbed what I could. I know how it is with the firstborns… At the time, wouldn’t even dare showing them a photo of my youngest flying!

Child Swap

The mood at the end of this multi-family photoshoot in Connecticut was incredible. Non-stop laughter, good vibes, and playfulness led me to the concluding idea of swapping the babies. Maybe I also needed to suggest mixing up the adults for a complete mess. Such an awesome finale!!!

Wishing you all health, love, cuteness overloads, and happiness, guys!

Ed Hafizov
Ed Hafizov
Ed Hafizov is a creative director and lead photographer of Zorz Studios, Manhattan-based boutique photography studio, offering arousing and daring fashion, commercial, beauty, and wedding photography. Multiple Fearless Photographer™ award winner, named among the top 50 US wedding photographers, top 10 NY wedding photographers, winner of Adobe contests, featured by Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Elle et al, Mercedes Benz Fashion Week photographer, and a distinguished member of Grace Ormonde Wedding Style‘s Platinum List, he is eager to step out of his and willing clients' comfort zone to pursue original artwork with a lasting impression.

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