Helen Bartlett / Family Portraiture

Just One – family photography in Richmond Park, London


Today’s ‘Just One’ preview image comes from my fourth family photo shoot with Richard and Nicola, and I’m tempted to say it was the best one yet! I love seeing families again and again over the years, catching up and seeing how the children are growing up. We’ve moved around a bit too – from our first shoot in Putney, then out to Tunbridge Wells where the family were considering country life, and then back to Putney. This shoot took place in the wonderful Richmond Park, a short drive away and a wonderful location for a children and family photography session.

I’ve always loved Richmond Park as a location for family portraits as it has all the things I love – big trees, interesting and varied areas, lots of different activities to do, and the all important coffee shop if it is necessary to stop for snacks. We had fantastic light when we visited too, which was brilliant with the low early morning sunlight catching the tops of the long grasses and providing a magical setting for our pictures.

The image I have chosen for today’s ‘Just One’ preview image was taken towards the end of our family portrait session in Richmond Park. The children were getting a bit tired after a busy morning and we were thinking of heading home for snacks and some pictures with the family’s new puppy. We then found an incredible den built down towards the bottom of the park and we spent a while playing in and around the den. It made a great setting for ‘forty-forty-home’, an interesting and exciting climbing frame, a good place to hide and a lovely spot for a game of make believe. It was also where I heard that Richard used to be in the army and I learnt some great new skills for how to make a fire (we didn’t make a fire in Richmond Park I should add, as there are many regulations but I will be trying my new stick rubbing techniques at the next bonfire).

The family sat down to discuss fire making techniques and other survival skills, and I took a step back to watch and see how the family would interact in this lovely setting. I wanted a wider shot to really show the location and keep the family small within the frame, making the most of the stunning setting and showing off the fabulous den. I love how it has framed the family and given context and shape to this picture. I love how the family are interacting – Tom explaining something to his father with the confidence and conviction so typical of seven year olds; little Alice smiling and giggling, happy to listen to her brother and to be playing with her parents; and the parents themselves, Richard and Nicola, chatting to their children, clearly so happy to be spending a fun day at the park, enjoying the opinions and ideas of the young ones.

It’s a lovely picture of a lovely family and I’m so glad to be sharing it with you today. I do hope you like it, today’s ‘Just One’ preview from our children and family photography session in Richmond Park.

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