Photoblog: September 2017 Archive

Storytelling Family Photography

Posted in Family at 18:07 on 29/09/2017

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I love story-telling family photographs, pictures that go beyond sitting still and looking at the camera, pictures that tell us about the families, about the children and about the fun that everyone has together.

Family portraits can tell stories in so many ways - they can tell us about how a child looks, their smile (or their grumpy face) how their hair was cut at a certain age and when their teeth fell out. But they can also tell us about the children’s personalities, are they boisterous or quiet for example. These story-telling pictures from Penny’s family photo shoot in London tell us so much about the family and for that reason will, I am sure, be treasured as the children grow up.

Our photo shoot started with Penny and baby Theodore, older brother Aristos needed a lie in as he had been up in the night. We had a lovely calm start to the morning, playing in the attic, which was an incredible space with fabulous light. Baby Theodore was so joyful, happily crawling around and playing with his shaking jar and then with his brothers toy plane, you get the feeling that it’s fun to play with the toys when he has the chance.

When older brother Arisots woke up then the photo shoot got a *lot* more energetic. He was fantastic, a photographers dream, not sitting still for a moment but full of fun and laughter. I love the pictures of him jumping on the bed, his baby brother sitting watching clearly thinking ‘I’m sure the photographer said we should both sit quietly’ while the photographer was enjoying getting much more interesting story-telling pictures. I love these shots and the insight they give into the children’s’ personalities.

I love how storytelling images can tell us so much about family pets too and the relationships between animals and children within the context of a family photo shoot. The dog clearly loved the children and really enjoyed running around with Aristos in the garden.

I love to see the joy on parent’s faces as they play with their children and the interactions between parent and child have so many stories to tell. Taking these photographs and providing them to my clients so they can enjoy looking back on them as the years pass is such a privilege. To be invited in to family homes and asked to photograph them, to tell their stories is something that I know I will continue to love until I’m too old to hold my camera.

If you like this approach, this idea of story-telling images and family portraits that capture everyone’s personalities shot in a really relaxed documentary fashion then do get in touch, we still have some availability in the run up to Christmas and I’d love to hear from you.

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Notting Hill Family Photography with Tennis

Posted in Just One at 08:21 on 23/09/2017

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It’s always a highlight of my year to visit Emma at her beautiful Notting Hill home for our annual children’s and family photo shoot. This year was just as much fun as I expected, we had a brilliant morning together, and I think the pictures are our best set yet. There are beautiful portraits of both the girls, lots of fun family photos and brilliant pictures of everyone having fun together. Working to provide my clients with a really interesting and varied set of images, year on year is one of the most fun parts of my job.

We had a brilliant time taking family photographs in the stunning garden square opposite Emma’s beautiful Notting Hill townhouse, it’s such a great location for family portraits and has a brilliant playground as well as lots of greenery and thick bushes perfect for hide and seek. The girls loved hiding, preferred not to be found but were also brilliant seekers finding my cunning hiding places much faster than I expected, perhaps the clicking of my shutter gave me away!

At the end of the session we jumped in the car as the girls had tennis lessons and we thought it would be lovely to get some shots of them playing as this is the sport that they have really started to love this year. It’s such fun to photograph the children’s hobbies, and who knows, if either girl is a future winner of Wimbledon we will have these pictures to look back on. I’m sharing one of each today, a Just Two as I love both the images, they are such fun pictures, each showing such personality.

Above, the image of Hannah is full of personality, raucous laughter as she enjoys the game. Hannah chatted all the way through her lesson, a running commentary that kept her instructor and I in stitches. She has perfect comic timing and is so much fun. I love how the joy just radiates off Hannah as she clutches her racket, guffawing at her missed shot, a smile to light a room.

The picture of Rosalind is so different yet also shows the essence of her personality. The photograph captures the intensity of her concentration as she returns her forehand drive. Her eye is fixed on the ball and we can feel the movement as her arm swings past her head, driving through to the end of the shot. There is a focus to her play that makes me think she will go far, clearly loving her lessons and returning shot after shot as I worked the light for the best picture.

I do hope you like these pictures, a sneak preview of my recent children’s and family portrait photography session in Notting Hill in West London. Autumn sessions are booking up fast and if you would like to arrange a photo shoot for your family in the run up to Christmas then do get in touch and we can get that booked into the diary.

Do take a look if you would like to see more of my Family Portrait Photography in Notting Hill


Get in touch to book a shoot


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A Portrait Photograph to Celebrate Ben's Birthday

Posted in Just One at 08:16 on 22/09/2017

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It was a beautiful day for Ben’s thirteenth birthday party and I was thrilled to be joining Ben, his family, and his friends to celebrate this special day and record the event in my documentary family photography style. It was a fantastic day, we had such a great time and I’m looking forward to sharing some more images in due course. Today, as a sneak preview for Ben and his parents, I’m pleased to share this stunning portrait.

Before the party started I joined the family while Ben opened his birthday presents and to take a few portrait photographs in the garden before his friends arrived. This picture is one of my favourites. I truly believe that black and white is the perfect medium for family portraits and this picture of Ben has so much of what I love about it.

It’s an image with immediate impact, as Ben looks straight at the camera, happy, confident, and about to have the most brilliant birthday party. By working in black and white we are drawn straight to the important things, to Ben’s expression, to the bright intelligence in his eyes and the glimmer of a smile on his lips. The colours in the background - the grass, fence and trees, don’t distract us. Instead we have a perfect canvas of textured greys on which to present our portrait.

Black and white is a timeless medium. Looking back on this image when Ben is in his thirties or forties this image will have retained it’s impact, it will not have dated and will look just as great then as it does now. I hope that Ben will look back on this picture as an adult and will be reminded of his thirteenth birthday. I hope he will call up the friends he has kept in touch with and fondly remember the others. I hope he will visit his parents and chat about this brilliant day they had together and the amazing party they arranged. This is what family photography is about, a medium to conjure memories of the past and, in images like this, a portrait of Ben as he moves into his teenage years, to make us think of the wonderful people we have around us now, our family and friends while also encouraging us to look forward to all the wonderful things that the future will bring. Photography is an amazing thing and it’s such a privilege for me to be invited into people’s homes to contribute my photographs to their memories.

Family Photographer London - at Kew

Posted in Family at 10:33 on 18/09/2017

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One of the most fantastic gifts you can give your children is photos of their childhood and, particularly, pictures with you in and this is where annual professional photo shoots come into their own. With the ubiquity of iPhones more and more of us take pictures each and every day. This is brilliant, I love how having a phone on me at all times means that I capture more moments, more memories. But I am sure I am not alone in only rarely printing those pictures. Also, for so many of us, there is one family member who takes the pictures and it’s lovely to make sure that everyone is in some of the photos. Many of my clients choose to have annual photo shoots to redress this balance, to ensure that everyone is in the pictures and, through albums and framed prints for the wall, make sure that the pictures are looked at every day and are preserved for the future.

Jennifer has arranged regular photo shoots for her family since Stella was three months old and I’m so pleased that I have been the family photographer for so long. After fifteen shoots I really feel I am part of the family and it’s always such great fun to visit the family, to have adventures together and to take pictures that everyone enjoys - the children particularly enjoy looking at their albums and Jennifer and Carlos always an album out on the coffee table for friends and family to look through.

In this session we visited beautiful Kew Gardens and spent a wonderful morning with the children, exploring the amazing gardens and taking pictures while everyone enjoyed themselves. We had amazing low light which made for such dramatic pictures. Using dramatic light takes experience and after fourteen years as a professional family photographer you can be sure that I can work with whatever the weather throws at us.

Annual photo shoots give us the opportunity to track year on year how children have grown and changed. I love looking back over a selection of images taken over the years and see what has changed and what remains the same - which expressions are there from the very beginning, a child’s smile, their laugh, and which poses and mannerisms are picked up over time, a mixture of home, friends, family and school and can lead to much hilarity for the adults. I know that, as the years pass these pictures become more and more important, looking back on the older shots is so interesting. I could, and do, spend hours enjoying photographs of my family that are framed all over my house and in the family albums that we all treasure, giving this gift to my clients is something I feel so lucky to do.

If you are thinking of starting to document your children’s lives in this way then today is a great time to start, there is no time like the present with the beautiful autumn weather it’s a lovely time to get out and about.

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Newborn and Family Portrait in North London

Posted in Just One at 14:47 on 16/09/2017

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I first met Elsa for a newborn photo shoot at the family home in North London when she was only a week old. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to visit the family twice more; for a brilliant photo shoot out at the park, a day to remember with Elsa and her parents when the family was still only three. Then, recently, I was so thrilled to go back again to meet baby Freddie and take his newborn portraits, pictures to document his early days and the excitement of his arrival into the family.

We had just as brilliant a morning; after a cup of coffee and a brief race around the kitchen on a tricycle designed for a two year old (I’m always one to enjoy a game even if my knees did cry in protest) I was ready to get to work and, knowing we it was going to rain later in the morning we started outside in the garden for some group shots and also to give Elsa a chance to calm down after our tricycle race and let off some steam. Working with toddlers and newborns is always great fun but always a challenge and I feel it’s so important to make sure the session is fun for the older child as it’s an extraordinary time for them with mammoth changes, all good but all taking a bit of getting used to.

Elsa was so excited to introduce me to her baby brother and insisted that I carried him and sat with her in her den behind the ‘monster barrier’ (necessary to keep her breakfast cheerios safe from any passing monsters) I knew the day was going to go well and it did, group shots outdoors and then a wonderful morning of indoor pictures, shots of the children individually and together, pictures of Freddie that record all the little details, his tiny toes, his delicate eyelashes, the details that will be so lovely to look back on when, even in a few weeks time, he will have grown so much.

Today’s just one is a picture that I took right at the end of the session and is a picture that harks back to one taken on Elsa’s North London newborn photography session. While I always approach each session as a new session, not repeating images from one to the next, it can be fun to carry an idea forward over the years, to see how the family grows and changes within the environment and how that early newborn peace and tranquility evolves to a wonderful and boisterous chaos, full of laughter and noise. I love this shot as it tells a story of how things are now with tiny Baby Freddie so calm and snuggly in his mother’s arms and Elsa, full of laughter and happiness ruling the roost and making sure Freddie learns how to sleep through a bit of noise.

It’s a picture that reminds us of the time that has passed and makes us curious as to the future, next time I visit it will probably be both children on their feet, laughing and shouting, full of fun and excitement as I take their photographs.

It was a brilliant day and there are so many lovely photographs that I will share soon. In the meantime, I hope you like today’s Just One from my recent newborn baby and family session in North London.