Helen Bartlett / Family Portraiture

Brothers – A Sibling Shot in West London


I love this picture of brothers, Milo and Elliott, taken on a recent family photography session in Hyde Park and in their beautiful home nearby. I was really looking forward to the session as Sarah and I had spoken on the phone and the family sounded such fun, I knew I would have a great time.

When I arrived Elliott greeted me with a huge grin and Milo was keen to explain his game – building a traffic-jam out of toy taxis around the kitchen table – an excellent way to start the day. While I had a cup of coffee I enjoyed playing with the cars, moving them out of the way for the emergency service vehicles and getting to know the children a bit before we started to take pictures. I love how children are always keen to invite me into their games and playing with them is a great way to build a rapport before we start.

When we arrived at the park I was keen to take some picture of the children together first as this gives us maximum flexibility over the rest of the session and is especially important when one of the children still has a mid-morning nap. I find that everyone is at their most cooperative first thing when they are wide-awake and full of energy. The boys were absolutely brilliant and I have some beautiful pictures of them sitting in the leaves, it’s been hard to choose a favourite.

This one jumps out at me though as I love the expressions. You can tell that Milo has just started to tickle his little brother and that lovely smile on Elliott’s face makes me laugh out loud. It’s such a happy picture and I love that there’s a little story in there too – with Elliott’s wide eyed smile giving the clue to what is happening. Pictures like this draw me back again and again, it’s a classic pose for two little ones but the expressions, real laughter rather than cheesy photo grins, make it something more and that little story, protective big brother holding his baby sibling, but also tickling him will probably play out again and again as they grow up.

It’s such a sweet picture and I hope you like it as much as I do, today’s Just One from my recent family photography session in Hyde Park.

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