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Meeting Maria Franck is to invite yourself into the poetry of her daily life, in the heart of Danish nature. Self-taught, Maria became a photographer at the same time as a mother, capturing, with a Scandinavian delicacy, every little moment of her family life. We let ourselves be drawn into the solar universe of their tribe, let’s meet!
Hi Maria, could you introduce yourself ?
I'm Maria, 34, mother of three little girls - Olivia, 8, Elinor, 6, and Oda Marie, who is 19 months old. My husband Jacob is 35, works as a paramedic.
I have a Master of Arts degree from the University of Aarhus with a major in Danish and English a minor in Journalism.
You work as a photographer, how do you start photography ?
Since I was a little girl I have loved photography. I remember when my mother bought me my first camera when I was about eight years old. I felt so lucky and I took pictures of everything.
When I became a mother I wanted a certain style of pictures of my children but I couldn't seem to find a photographer that would do natural childrens' portraits. I just wanted pictures that were full of love in everyday situations and not something forced. So I took the pictures myself which led to other mothers hiring me through instagram. And from there it just took off.
As a photographer you work mostly for kids brands, what inspires you in the kids photography ?
Children are amazing, they're just so earnest and straight forward. I rarely instruct children that much when we shoot because I just love their moods and how genuine they are. Their free spirits inspire me the most.
What do you like the most about your job ?
I love the creative process and the aesthetic prospect.
I love meeting new people all the time. So many different stories and personalities.
You recently moved to the countryside, how is life there ?
It is very family oriented. Moving from an apartment in the city to a house with a garden close to beautiful nature and the sea was very much a decision we took because of our children The neighbors are friendly, we will literally talk over the fence, and atmosphere is relaxed and comfortable.
You are also the mum of 3 girls, how do you find balance between work and family ?
When my maternity leave with my youngest was over last September, I made the decision to quit my job as a Content manager. I wanted more time with my family and on my own terms. Having three children I know how quickly times passes by and for how short a while the children are little. I didn't want to work 40 hours a week while feeling I was missing out on my childrens' childhood.
Working freelance means that I get to schedule my own time and it has allowed me to keep my youngest out of daycare so far. When my husband is home I can work - we always plan it out so that one parent is home.
Could you share with us, what is a typical day in your life ?
Working freelance means that two days are never the same. When I have a day at home I make my children breakfast, eat with them and get my two oldest ready for school. I think it's a very typical day, nothing exciting. Doing parent stuff.
Then I take Oda to the playground, to the public pool, to go see some friends, we goout for a walk or we take a long warm bath in the bathtub. I might go visit my grandmother, do groceries, prepare lunch or dinner.
While Oda is napping I will get some work done. Edit photos or answer my e-mails. In the afternoon we pick up the girls. Depending on the weather we will go to the beach, play in the garden or watch a movie on rainy days. When every child is sleeping (around 9.30 pm) I'll prepare for the next day so we won't have a stressful morning.
And then I'll pick up some work again before going to bed.
On shoot days I will get out of the house before my family and go to the location. I always nervous, no matter what kind of shoot I'm doing. Portraits of children or a big campaign. I like the nervousness, it makes me my best. I want to do my best.
After a shoot I'm, always really tired but being a mama, as every mama knows, you'll just have to pull through and get things done.
So I'll cuddle with my children when I get home, we wil get something easy to eat and not stress about cooking for too long. My husband will tuck the girls in and I will take a long warm bath
How do you raise your 3 girls ? What values and life skills would like to convey to them ?
Always be kind to others. Be kind to yourself. See no colour, gender or shape. Raise your voice for those who need you to. Raise your voice for yourself. Be aware of your privilegie. Show respect. Demand respect.
You can always learn. We all have flaws. We all have a history You are allowed to feel the way you do. You don't have to be perfect. To me you are always perfect. Try not to judge others. I will never judge you. I love your forever no matter what.
It is very important to me that my girls know that our home is their safe place. I hope they will always feel free to talk to me about anything and that they will know that we as their parents will never shut them down. I respect my children very much and we do our very best to raise humans that will be kind and show respect to others.
How do you choose the products (fashion, food, beauty) for you and your children ?
I don't do impulsive shopping. I always think about what I'm buying, how will it be used in our home, how was it produced, how is the quality etc. It is very important to me that what I buy have a purpose.
Could you share with us your favorite addresses around your place ?
I'll share some tips for Aarhus, the next big city ind Denmark where I lived for over ten years. I know it very very well.
As a tourist I would go see Moesgaard Museum and Aros art Museum.
I would eat at Englen or Oli Nico. Have coffee at La Cabra. Look at toys at Askeladen.
I would go to the playground at Marselisparken, let the kids play, take a walk in the park, and from here you could go to the beach, the habour or to the Danish Queen's summer residence or Tivoli Friheden.
Your favorite thing to do with family ?
Beach days! My kids love the sand and the water and will play for hours and hours.
Your favorite moment of the day ?
When all three children get into my bed in the morning and we cuddle before we have to get up.
And when I get in the shower at night and all three children are sleeping in their own bed
Your favorite Minois product ?
The kids love the Bubble bath and I love the magic balm which have saved my childrens' skin. Especially their little hands during COVID19.
Thank you very much Maria for your time.
Follow Maria Franck on her Instagram account : @mariafranck