Being a mum myself, I fully understand the speed that children grow up and the importance of having photographic memories of those special years. I also have plenty of experience in catching these special moments on camera. I realise that children like to feel comfortable and that the way to get the best results from them is during a relaxed and informal photoshoot. They usually end up having so much fun that they forget that they are having photos taken and just enjoy themselves.
Portrait sessions are always relaxed and usually last about an hour. Prior to your session I always discuss what you would like from your session. I will always photograph the whole family together and then each person on their own – but maybe you would also like us to photograph particular groups of people such as all the children, Mum and daughter together etc…. the combinations are endless, just let us know and I’ll happily photograph any combination you wish. You can let us know if there are any particular images you may have seen and would like me to try. There’s plenty of time for you to change clothes or accessories and create a wide range of looks as you wish. I always encourage customers to bring along any favourite items to really personalise their portraits – your toddlers favourite teddy, your eldest boy’s guitar, or anything like that that may be personal favourites to your family members! It all helps me to create unique and personal portraits. Feel free to discuss with me any items you'd like to bring to see if they'd be suitable.
I often get asked what people should wear for their studio sessions. It’s a very good question and something that you may not have thought about, but clothing can have quite a big effect on the ‘look’ of your photographs. So I’ve put together some tips on what to wear (and what to avoid!) at your session. These tips aren’t absolutely ‘must do’ kind of rules, but photographers generally agree that by making you aware of a few points, you’ll get better looking portraits.
Choose clothes that you feel comfortable in – our portrait sessions are about you, not your clothing – but its important to wear clothes that you are comfortable in. Choose clothes that you like and show you how you like to be seen. – let’s capture your personality in the portraits.
In family group photographs, its great if everyone is co-ordinated – which doesn’t mean that your clothes need to match – such as wearing exactly the same coloured tops. Its more about wearing colours and tones which are similar; this visually brings everyone in the group together in the photograph, rather than one person wearing completely different colours and standing out from the rest of the group. Its best to avoid strong colours such as bright reds and pinks which draw your attention to that person in the photograph. We find that plain pastel colours work really well in family portraits because they’re easy on the eye and allow the photograph to concentrate on the people rather than their clothing.
If you like lots of colour, perhaps pick just two colours and make sure that everyone in the family is wearing one or both of the colours. Dressing everyone in blue jeans and white tops is a stylish combination that always photographs well and gives a timeless feel to the pictures.
Wear long sleeved tops – because skin is light in colour, exposed arms will usually draw the eye and dominate the photograph.
Plain clothes work best – avoid clothing with patterns, logos, writing, pictures or anything which will be distracting or will go out of fashion and date the photograph. And yes – it even applies to socks! Its best to stick to plain dark coloured socks for pictures which include your feet, or even have bare feet. Warm or cool colours, pastels and earthy colours look good in family group pictures. Try to wear something that compliments your skin tone – dark clothes may not work on someone with very fair skin. Textures and layers work well – they add real depth to portraits.
Kids portraits are the exception – they love dressing up, so try to bring a couple of outfit changes. Photographing children is all about fun and letting their personalities shine out and the same goes for their clothes – if plenty of funky, bright colours is their usual look, then bring it on. If they’re into sports or a hobby, why not bring along the kit and any accessories to get some special portraits of this time in their lives – showing your kids as they really are, doing what they love.
So to summarise, wear comfortable clothes that you feel good in. For family group photographs, try to wear clothes which have similar colour or tones – so no one person ‘stands out’. To get the most from your shoot, bring a change of outfit, particularly for any children.