Helen Bartlett / Family Portraiture

Just One – Maggie – Suffolk children’s and family photographer


I have been lucky enough to photograph a number of large families this year and I have loved all the shoots. As a specialist children’s and family photographer, there is always a lot of variety in my job but until recently it was fairly rare for me to be photographing families of four or more children. But as my clients return to me year-after-year and families grow, I’m finding that I’m photographing larger family shoots more and more. They are so much fun!

I last photographed Maggie and Andrew when they were a family of four with just two children a number of years ago and so I was thrilled to see them again and to meet the new arrivals. Now with four children and my own personal favourite combination of three older boys and one small girl (the same set up in my own family – I have three older brothers!), I knew we were going to have a wonderful day. I also knew to expect a certain level of chaos – four children and chaos go together like bacon and eggs, a fabulous combination.

I arrived nice and early to find everyone feasting on bacon sandwiches and after fuelling the children on food and the adults on coffee, we headed outdoors.

The wheat field at the top of Maggie and Andrew’s garden was the perfect spot for the family picture I have chosen for today’s ‘Just One’ image, with the wheat moving in the wind and at that magical point where it seems to be flowing like the sea. It was a perfect location for children’s and family portrait photography.

I suggested we gather for a family shot with the hills in the background and I captured the mayhem of children jumping one way, the dog the other, everyone laughing and it all just clicked! I fired the shutter and knew I had the shot where everything would come together at once – children leaping, parents laughing and the family dog visible through the wheat.

To me, this ‘Just One’ image sums up what it’s like to be part of such a big family – the noise (you can almost hear the noise in this picture), the movement, the mayhem and the parents laughing at the exuberance and individuality of their children. Everyone is happy, proud and part of this strong family unit but also as friends ready to take on the world. I love this picture and I hope you do too from our children and family photography session in Suffolk.

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