Wilton photographer Peggy Garbus has always found inspiration for her family and portrait photography work from her own family and friends.

In fact, it was her experience with her own now-grown children that gave her the idea for her Capturing Family Series that she’s offering on the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, Nov. 27. She saw a need that others likely had when her own kids started leaving the nest. She came up with a way to help fill that need and combine it with a way to give back around the holidays.

Peggy Garbus in JP_Headshot-2015

Wilton photographer Peggy Garbus

“Now that my three children have moved beyond high school years, one has graduated from college and lives in Boston and the other two are in college, I realize that it’s difficult to get everybody together for a photo session,” she says, adding that in past years clients have called asking for full photo sessions on the day after Thanksgiving, when they also have the entire family, or perhaps even extended family around.

“I thought why not set up a day where I can be in one spot, serve many people who have the same need and fill it,” Garbus says.

She has reserved an entire day for families to book 20-minute photo sessions, ideally for six family members or less.

Given the iffy time of year, Garbus needed to find a location that would serve both indoor and outdoor locations, just in case the weather didn’t cooperate. “I was looking for a property that had a barn so that I could use the inside space if the weather was bad.”

She put out a call on Facebook through the Wilton 411 page, and included an offer for a complimentary family photo shoot in return. She quickly had people who volunteered their homes as potential locations. “People I didn’t even know offered, I thought that was so nice.”

She found a perfect spot at the Wilton home of Liz Salguero. 

“I asked Liz how I could give back,” explains Garbus, and of course Salguero had a perfect idea. Salguero happens to be the founder and president of Circle of Care, a Wilton-based organization that supports families of children with cancer. “She said, ‘What would be great is if people want to participate in some way with Circle of Care. It’s Christmas time, it’s a season of giving, it would be great people want to donate an Amazon gift card or iTunes gift card, we can give that to the cancer patients we serve, it would be great to give that to them to use as they wish.'”

Garbus is asking anyone who signs up for one of the spots to bring along a token gift card ($10-$25 or more) that will be donated to Circle of Care as a thank you to Salguero for offering up her home. She’s taken with how the idea came together as a really community-centered effort. “I love that it came together through Wilton 411 and it’s for Circle of Care. It’s all in the spirit of giving and the start of the holiday season.”

As for what Garbus tries to capture when she takes family portraits, she says she tries to capture everyone’s personalities. “And the love that they have between them and the connection. Thanksgiving is a time of togetherness and connection, that is often hard to come by in this day and age, especially when older kids have left home or are working or in college. My photos are about connection, about being close. My goal is to capture that warmth and connection.”

She’ll photograph families, children together, and if time allows, individual shots of each child. The session will cost $299, and families will get not only the session but a framed and matted 5″x7″ image and complimentary online upload. All the details are listed on her website. Proofs will be ready in time for anyone who wants to use the image for holiday cards.

There are a limited number of spots remaining, so to contact Garbus about reserving a spot visit her website or call 203.529.3660.