Helen Bartlett / Family Portraiture

On the swings in Kensington W8 – a fun family photograph

03Nov

Today on the blog we have a shot from a recent children’s portrait photography session in Kensington. Half-term has been brilliant with lots of portrait shoots seeing many of my regular clients and meeting new families, families like Melinda’s who I hope I will see again in the future – we had such a great time!

It was so hard to choose a favourite to share as we had such a great session, the children were so much fun and I loved chatting to them about all the important issues of the day – who is the best superhero, which Bond baddie is coolest – subjects that I’m happy to discuss all morning. I loved hearing all about the plans for Halloween too and I wish I’d seen all the decorations and costumes once they were in place.

I decided on this swing shot for my Just One as I love the symmetry of it. As you can imagine I spend a lot of time photographing children on swings and one of the real pleasures is trying to get something different each time, whether it’s an angle or the use of light, something that makes the shot stand out from the crowd. With this one it was the perfect symmetry, the children in identical stances with such big grins. The circular shape of the giant net swing really holds it together.

I love how all the lines interact. The bar at the top anchoring the swing in solid space and the covered swing chains taking the eye back down to the base of the image from one side and back up on the other. It’s an image with recurring triangles, the shape of the swing chains both in the larger sense of the whole image but also smaller triangles from the two chains on each side. More triangles if you look at the children with the chains, both from top to bottom anchored by their feet and also heads to arms and back up the chains. Even the net swing is covered in smaller chain triangles, each shape reflecting the others and all combining in this wonderfully composed image.

But best of all are the expressions, the children having so much fun on the swings in Kensington during our family photo shoot. I’m so pleased with this picture and I hope you like it too.

And the question for the end – how many triangles can you count in the picture?