Our Family Portraits :: By David E. Jackson

November 26, 2009 | Family


About a month or so ago Meg announced that we HAD to get a family portrait done. Like, for real.  Knowing how busy we are and how photographer’s kids don’t have photos she said we had to hire someone to do it for us.

That led to the ultimate question… Who?  Who would we want to photograph us?

Well, that list is long but since it was Meg’s prompting she got dibs. Those dibs went to long time e-friend David E. Jackson from Wisconsin. Dave and his studio manager, Trevor, came down this weekend for the shoot. It was an amazing time and we love, love, love our photos.

You can see more on his blog.  Yes, we picked the Prison Farm for our location because we knew Dave would love it and it would suit our personal aesthetic. See his blog to see the images from there!

Thanks again Dave!

Cheers, Zack


  • Allen Ross Thomas said on November 26, 2009

    Jose Ole’ Mexi Mini’s!?! :-)

  • Thomas TC said on November 26, 2009

    Great shot. I love the busyness of the photo, and your “minimalist” t-shirt. Do wish he had taken a second to clone out the softbox in the mirror (center back).

    Lots of cool shots in his blog.

    I was sure I saw a video of the living room shoot, but now I can’t find it…?

  • sean said on November 26, 2009

    Hey Zack,

    Where is the Prison Farm located?

    Really love the shots! They really fit your personality from listening to your critiques with Meghan- such a kick ass family.

  • Charles Verghese said on November 26, 2009

    I think that these photos are so….you!

    Great everything…

    Glad to see that u managed to get the photographer’s family phtos finally.


    (PS – when do we get to see you in Dubai next?)

  • Garry said on November 26, 2009

    Fantastic set of shots :)
    Absolutely love the table shots – so much life and reality in them instead of the usual formality of family shoots.

  • Mandie said on November 26, 2009

    Yay, WI photogs! Dave did an awesome job. Loved the pics on his blog! Your family is so unique and has such a great collective personality. Keep up the family photos! It would be great to see how all the little Arias kids grow up!

  • Frederik said on November 26, 2009

    I’ve just seen the set on his blog. Some awesome shots he made. A nice family you’ve got there :-)

  • Severin said on November 26, 2009

    Haha, cool photos! So not common family portraits and I love it!
    Seems like the kids keep you occupied quite well :)

  • Gill Taylor said on November 26, 2009

    These are most definitely the coolest family photos I have seen in a LONG time :))) Thanks for sharing !

  • Alexandra said on November 26, 2009

    I just saw the rest of them on his blog – they’re priceless :) Great choice of photographer!

  • Takki said on November 26, 2009

    funny, raw, edgy – the best family photos I have seen in a while, thumbs up to the photog and his clients !

  • Monte Stevens said on November 26, 2009

    Love the family portrait, it’s busy and quite humorous. Have a wonderfully Happy Thanksgiving.

  • Hunter said on November 26, 2009

    Absolutely love it. The only thing better than your t-shirt is the look on your face. You must be thinking “this is the ‘last supper’ for the damned” 😉

    Here is what I want to know. On David’s site, there is a picture of Erik. First, what does it say next to “ideas:”.

    Second, does Erik count as family? Because his guest blog at ScottKelby.com would lead you to think he falls into the trained monkey category.

    Really awesome photos! My favorite is second one at the prison.

  • Stacy Hughes said on November 26, 2009

    I adore these portraits! Your family rocks. Your photography rocks. David E. Jackson Rocks. ’nuff said. :)

  • Magnus Bogucki said on November 26, 2009

    great photos!

  • Edwina Cottino said on November 26, 2009

    Hey Zack, these are totally awesome! Only your family could pull off something like this. Also, Meg, love your hair. Zack, have you been in the gym since your last trip to Dubai? (Compliment by the way!) and the youngest Arias before Hawke is without a doubt your copy Zack!
    Coolest family portrait I have ever seen. Great lighting. Was it one light?

  • Greg Avalos said on November 26, 2009

    The Bomb love it.

  • David duChemin said on November 26, 2009

    y’all aren’t quite right are you? :-)

    Great stuff Zack. Who wouldn’t be proud to send these out at Christmas time? Think of the encouragement you’ll give to many as you quietly say “you think your family’s nuts? Look at ours!” through images. :-)

    Happy Thanksgiving, Zack.

  • Justin Van Leeuwen said on November 26, 2009

    Reminds me that I don’t have a photo of me and my son – he’s 18 months now and my wife just won’t do it (I’m no good she says). It makes me sad, I love him, and I’ve setup the tripod and taken some of “us” but it’s not the same and I miss a few details.

    Just strengthens my resole to find someone to do this FOR me. Oh but who in Ottawa could capture our quirks right… hmmmn.

  • Jason Young said on November 26, 2009

    Z in the 2 years I have know you I do not think I have ever seen you with out a hat… I now have an idea why! jus messin!

    great shoot! Who cleaned up the mess?

  • adam(3) said on November 26, 2009

    thats the coolest fam pic ever.
    i love that its so real.

  • Mike Lemovitz said on November 26, 2009

    Absolutely love the photos! Awesome locations, awesome lighting, awesome photographer, and awesome family!

  • Martin said on November 26, 2009

    Zack, I laughed out loud. You, and Meg and the kids totally rocked this series. Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for your stewardship of this great craft. You remain an inspiration.

  • Glyn Dewis said on November 26, 2009

    Love it!!! Dave certainly done you guys proud, and it’s so refreshing to see family photos done this way.

    Good on ya!

    Best wishes,

  • Eric E said on November 26, 2009

    Gorgeous family bro. Happy Thanks Giving!

  • Saravmit Singh said on November 26, 2009

    OMG this is so amazing.. i really love the expression of everyone…lol you really inspire me alot…

    Best Wishes

  • Ian said on November 26, 2009

    Newcastle Brown Ale!

  • Will said on November 26, 2009

    I love the teaser shots on Twitter and I am glad they are done. Great stuff!

  • Elliot said on November 27, 2009

    Ha, Didn’t know you can’t get Newcastle Brown Ale on the other side of the Pond! :) Epic Win

  • steve said on November 27, 2009

    One word, Awesome!
    Happy Thanksgiving.

  • jacy joypals said on November 27, 2009

    Absolutely priceless…love it all, great work and the inspiration is natural and so fun and reallllll! Truly prime time!

  • Justin Gill said on November 27, 2009

    Shout outs to old Paper Brigadiers.

    Dang, I don’t know how you juggle all the things you do: Family, traveling, blogging and photogging.

  • udi said on November 27, 2009

    1. This is not that messy
    2. 3 out of four kits are actually holding a bite and looks like they plan on taking it. you have it easy, man.

    Great family and great family portrait.

  • tom said on November 27, 2009

    hi zack,
    dont know if critique is welcome,
    – aggressive killed shadows

    – looks motion blurred
    and oversharpened afterwards

    love the shot though

  • Martin said on November 27, 2009

    Love the series Zack. Awesome. Hoping to see you on the 2010 tour.

  • kent corley said on November 29, 2009

    love ’em.

  • steph said on November 29, 2009

    your boys are absolutely precious, and your wife is beautiful. couldn’t stop smiling at the dinner shots. you are a blessed man.

  • meg said on November 29, 2009

    Brilliant family portrait, love it!

  • Heather said on November 29, 2009

    Wow! I love love love this shot.

  • kristi said on November 30, 2009

    nothing short of fabulous

  • Darien Chin said on November 30, 2009

    Damn I didn’t know you had so many youngins. And you don’t even live in Utah..

  • Dijea said on November 30, 2009


  • Annette Whelan said on December 1, 2009

    Checked out the link…awesome pics…you have a beautiful family Zack!

  • Geoff said on December 1, 2009

    Great shot… Great Subjects… Props on the New Castle!

    But, I see the light box in the mirror.

  • Amanda said on December 1, 2009


  • Vicki said on December 1, 2009

    Terrific choice. I love Dave. I’m so happy that he’s in my ‘hood!!

  • Jaroslav said on December 4, 2009

    Fantastic – I love the photos and mood :-) Great Family! Congrats!

  • Adam Cavanagh said on December 7, 2009

    Such a cool family photo!!

  • Robert Walker said on December 9, 2009

    Awesome shot! I love photos that capture the realness of the moment. That is my style as well! GREAT SHOT, GREAT SHOT! I cant say it enough.

  • jan said on December 13, 2009

    Hey Zack, nice family pics. But u make ur glasses look good. What is the brand and model of ur glasses? :I

  • Denver Engagement Photographer said on December 17, 2009

    I love that shot, it’s great, and looks about right for kids at the dinner table.

  • carrie said on December 22, 2009

    does your wife play piano?? i think i recognize her from playing at buckhead church..

  • Tim said on December 23, 2009

    Priceless! My girlfriend and I are laughing our arses off!

  • sheri said on January 1, 2010

    what fun pics! he did a great job :)

  • lia minou said on January 12, 2010

    great shots! i love the spontaneity!:)

  • Catherine V said on January 12, 2010

    Thanks for sharing that image. Love it.

  • Pazi said on February 22, 2010

    that beer… the first time ive ever had that beer was at your place for the “pre”viewing of the one light DVD… Cheers lol Great shot!!!

  • Brian Carey said on April 13, 2010

    You guy’s definitely need a daughter!;-)

  • Jon said on June 24, 2010

    we’ve had two boys and we finally just had our daughter. It’s such a relief. I recommend taking one more gamble! lol

    Is it just me or are the gritty settings a tad forced feeling? Maybe I’m more of a conservative family guy and your family runs a lot more modern than ours. I’m the sort that needs those utopian, heavenesque settings that speak of the nurturing environment a family needs. As a guy that doesn’t actually know your family, it just looks like it was an edgy and cool background selected for the sake of looking cool. Just trying to be the devils advocate. I do love the photos, and the BGs are way rad. I know they seem much more ideal for glamour work.

    don’t give up on that girl! 😉

  • Hunter said on July 29, 2010

    I love these shots, your kids are truly badass.

  • Autumn Pittelli said on October 29, 2010

    LOVE it!! It was really great meeting you guys at Groupp’s. Hope to see you again one day.

  • Todor said on November 2, 2010

    As someone who is starting to build a photography career – one of my areas being family photography – this picture goes to show that there are so many different compositions that work. Gone are the days of going into the garden/park/studio! This image speaks volumes, and gives the viewer a 3 dimensional insight into your family and family life! Lots of love, happiness, and a great atmosphere!

  • Wedding Photographer Sydney said on April 28, 2012

    Photography at it’s best. Zack, you obviously went to lengths to set up the lights in the room. What amazes me is how natural the image looks even though it is clearly staged. Great work mate.

  • kedR said on July 1, 2012

    Love your family and this image. Would love to see some more from this series. 😀

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