8 Front Porch Photos of Portland Families During the Pandemic


2020 has been…weird? hard? unprecedented?

The correct answer is all of the above. Yes, this year started off like most, but quickly devolved into school closings and quarantines. The summer has been a *slight* reprieve, but it’s definitely NOT been how most of us imagined enjoying the Pacific Northwest’s best season of the year.

Most families are spending the majority of their time at home, and parenting during quarantine comes with its own set of challenges. While it can feel impossible to get a moment to yourself at times, there is still beauty and moments of joy in our days. That’s part of the reason I love the images coming out of local “porchtrait” sessions: socially-distant images of families in front of their homes. We know things are strange and uncomfortable, but it feels vital to capture these moments, to be able to look back on and reflect whenever things get back to “normal”.

Here are some of my favorite front porch photos of Portland families during the pandemic.

A Case of the Giggles

A dad, mom, and their two daughters laughing in front of their home by Kitta Bodmer Photography
Image courtesy of Kitta Bodmer Photography

Even though being together all the time can be difficult, many families are still able to find the humor in life. From Kitta Bodmer Photography, once the giggling started for this family, it became contiguous (but in a good way).

Every porch session tells a different story. From engagement, to single parents, to COVID victims, to BLM. We are all going through something together. I don’t remember a time when the world could say that. We are connected, empathetic, and loving about what all our needs are. One common thread in my photoshoots is that families LOVE the time they are spending together. And I love helping them remember it. One Porch Project at a time!

Front-Yard Ice Cream Smiles

A mother looking at her young daughter eating ice cream and smiling from Studio Nagita Photography
Image courtesy of Studio Nagita Photography

Even during days of quarantine, we can find joy in simple things… like ice cream.

Spring weather surely made up for us having to #stayhome #staysafe with the arrival of COVID-19. The Kusaba family decided to have their photos taken in their front yard while eating ice cream. I’ve taken different family group photos, but when having the chance to capture a beautiful moment, this is it. This is why I love photography. It’s about living in the moment. Every family has had their own creative way of embracing the front step project and all have enjoyed this experience in breaking away from the reality of COVID-19.
– Natalie

When Quarantine Gets Real

A Family in their front lawn with two parents and two children. The mom is sitting on the ground drinking wine while the dad is on his laptop and the two young children are running around by Chelletography
Image courtesy of a friend of the author via Chelletography

Laptops, truck in hair, and a bottle glass of wine. This is certainly one of the most realistic front porch images I’ve come across. Keeping kids, especially, the little ones entertained long enough to get any kind of work done feels like a full-time job on its own. At least the Pauly family seems to be taking everything in stride.

Candid on the Steps

Family of father, mother, and three kids sitting on their front porch
Image courtesy of Erika Ellis Photography

Molly Yi took a break from her job as a photographer to be in FRONT of the camera with her own front porch family session by Erika Ellis Photography. Personally, I’m a big fan of candid shots. This particular photo captures the entire family in a way that feels genuine to the quarantine “moment” that we’re living in.

Hits Close to Home

Family of four wearing sunglasses standing in front of their home for Kitta Bodmer Photography
Image courtesy of Kitta Bodmer Photography
I was able to photograph the family of my childhood friend. As a police officer in California, his brother was transferring patients from prison to the hospital and contracted COVID. Two weeks later, he passed at age 52. This was definitely the most emotional porch session I have done. – Kitta

A Very Dressed Up Birthday Celebration

A family of four sitting together on their front steps dressed in various Halloween costumes to celebrate their daughter's 7th birthday (in April) by Studio Nagita Photography
Image courtesy of Studio Nagita Photography
What a special occasion! Joni, who just turned seven, was gifted a session to take photos of her and her family on her birthday so that she could feel extra special and remember her day. This was not a usual birthday celebration due to COVID-19 #stayinghome #stayingsafe. I love how they embraced dressing up in Halloween costumes, even though it was April. The weather was gorgeous and this birthday girl was spending her whole day in a Halloween theme, Zoom party, Halloween cake, Halloween decorations, the works! – Natalie

The Big Leap

A married couple caught in mid jump by Kitta Bodmer Photography
Image courtesy of Kitta Bodmer Photography

All this time at home with our families can lead to fun and creative ways to pass the time together.

[This] couple just got engaged a month earlier. His sister gifted a porch session to them as an engagement present all the way from New Zealand. – Kitta

Waiting on Baby

Family of three outside their home by Chelletography
Image courtesy of a friend of the author’s via Chelletography

One major life event that’s been significantly changed by quarantine: pregnancy.

Doctor/midwife appointments are different, baby showers aren’t the same, limited hospital partners, and more. It doesn’t sound easy (and is far from ideal), but the Dietrich family did it (and now they have a new baby too)! Being able to celebrate in little ways, like having front porch photos, definitely helps.

A special THANK YOU to the photographers and families that shared their photos with us. To get in touch with any of the photographers mentioned, please find their information below:

Kitta Bodmer Photography
Facebook, Instagram

Studio Nagita Photography
Facebook, Instagram

Erika Ellis Photography
Facebook, Instagram

Facebook, Instagram