Each one of us sooner or later in his life becomes the subject of an awkward family photo…
And so why not trying to collect these kind of shots from all over the world? Two American guys had this idea back in 2009. Awkwardfamilyphotos is the result.
I had a chat with Doug Chernack, one of the founders.
Q. How did you have the idea of the website and when did you started?
A. The site started in May, 2009 when my childhood friend and writing partner Mike Bender noticed an awkward vacation photo hanging in his parent’s house. It was an awkward ski vacation picture where he and his family were doing a rockettes kick on top of a mountain. He was describing it to me at lunch the next day and I mentioned that I had plenty of awkward family photos too and we thought that if we have these types of pictures, then other people probably do too. And wouldn’t it be fun to create a place to celebrate all of those uncomfortable moments we have with our families?
Q. You receive pictures from all over the world, don’t you? Is there a country that normally has the weirdest pictures or when it comes to family shots all the countries are the same?
A. We receive submissions from around the world and while there may be details specific to a certain region (matching outfits seem to be quite popular in the us, while shirtless dads are apparently big in the UK) the pictures have proven that awkward families are all across the globe 🙂
Q. Do you publish all the pictures you receive or are there specific standards to meet in order to be featured on your website?
A. We publish about 5-10% of the submissions we receive. In terms of what we’re looking for, there are a few classic elements of an awkward picture: matching outfits, overly planned poses (such as a family stacked on top of each other), props, a strange location, something odd happening in the background, an insight into the family dynamic (mom is angry with dad, a sibling fight, etc.) and anything that leaves us feeling generally uncomfortable usually makes the cut.
Q. What is your mid/long term objective with the website? Where do you see it in 3/5 years time?
A. The long-term objective is to continue building the awkward family photos brand. We’re starting to get into awkward family videos, we’re about to publish our third book, we have afp greeting cards, an app, and a t-shirt line that is debuting later this year. And we also in talks to tour an Awkward Family Photos physical exhibition.
So… What are you waiting to be the next one featured on the website?
Looking forward to see you there… 😉