Q) What type of photos do you do?
I specialise in natural light portrait photography (that means no flashes and no studios and lots of fresh air)! It gives me so much pleasure to create something that makes people happy every time they see it and can take pride of place on a wall instead of being hidden away on a hard-drive. I especially love taking photographs of children but I also do couples and families. I like to capture a person’s character and the essence of what their family is about. I use a digital camera and edit all the photos afterwards. They are all taken in colour but certain shots can look really good in black and white and sepia so I like to provide these too. Some of my shots also have a ‘vintage’ feel to them. I like to take photos that look natural and un-posed, although they are actually set up in an informal way to look the way they do.
Q) Where will the photo shoot take place?
The shoot can take place in the comfort of your own home, in your garden, or in a local park or beach, depending on where you would prefer and partly on the age of your children. Newborn photo shoots are always at home. I love to work with the natural light and colours of the outdoors and it leads to the most stunning shots, so beaches, woods and fields are ideal places. Natural light can also be found at home, from a large window for instance. If you have a special place in mind, I can check it out, or if not I can recommend some good places for us to go around here. I do not charge travel expenses within 30 miles of Ashburton (TQ137AN).
Q) How long does the shoot take?
I will usually be with you from 1-3 hours but we can take longer if babies or children need a break. There is no time limit. Don’t organise anything straight afterwards as it can put pressure on everyone if you are in a hurry.
Q) How many photos do we see and are they all going to be edited?
I will select the 30-100 best images from the shoot and all of them will be edited in my style and ready to print. They are not straight out of the camera files.
Q) Do we need to prepare?
It is important to book a time of day when your children will be relaxed and not too tired, however it is also important we have the best natural light which is usually beginning and end of the day. Surprisingly, this is easier in winter than in summer due to the shorter days. To be able to create the best images, I need the children to be relaxed and spontaneous so tell them it is going to be fun! There is no boring sitting still and posing and …it is ok to get muddy! It’s best not to tell your kids to ‘smile’. It can result in forced smiles and it’s much better if we just relax and wait for the ‘real thing’. If we are doing some photos indoors then it’s good if you have a room with large windows or lots of light. Clear away unsightly things like washing hanging out etc. Photos of kids on a parent’s bed can look good with a plain duvet.
Q) Do we need to bring anything?
You can bring some changes of clothes if you wish, but nothing with big logos that can look dated in a few years. Colour is good and it is best to avoid plain black and plain white. Some tissues and a hairbrush are useful but I always carry spares. Favourite toys, teddies or family mementos and props such as baskets for collecting things are welcomed, even fancy dress if your kids (or you!) feel like it. I like to incorporate things from nature into the photos that kids pick up along the way. It’s a good idea to bring snacks for the kids, but nothing too messy. Fruit is always a good option.
Q) What if the weather is really bad or my child is ill?
No problem, we can either go indoors or reschedule at no extra cost. I have a studio available for use if you would prefer. It’s best not to wait for a really sunny day though as often the best portrait shots are NOT taken in bright sunlight.
Q) What if my child is very shy?
I have experience with children with a broad range of personalities and I have lots of patience. It may take longer sometimes with a shy child, but the reward is greater when we capture the spontaneous smiles that always come.
Q) Can we have the whole family photographed?
Yes! Even if you want the main focus to be on the children, several relaxed informal portraits are good to have and the children love to have copies of these pictures themselves with you in them. Make sure you wear clothes you are happy to be photographed in, and don’t clash with the rest of the family.
Q) How do we order prints and other products from you?
A few weeks after your shoot your pictures will be ready to view. I’ll personally show you the best 30-100 images all of which have been carefully selected and edited. Viewings normally happen in the evening when the children are tucked up in bed, I am happy to come to you. You can order prints, canvases etc. that day, from my price list at a 10% discount or you can contact me at any time to order more images. Payment for orders is upfront. I can help choose frames and mounts and can source them for you if you would like.
Q) Can we purchase the digital images?
There is an option on my price list to buy the digital images in high resolution, for printing, or low resolution for use on the internet. Copyright remains with the photographer.
Q) Can we upload our favourite photos on facebook?
Often I use photos from a shoot on facebook and on my website for marketing purposes. If you do not want me to do this please just let me know, but it can be a way of showing your family and friends the best shots without purchasing the digital images. Often I will put a few of the images online before they are all ready, so you can get a taster of the photos before waiting for the viewing, just ‘like’ my facebook page and you should see them in your news feed (also just let me know if you would rather I didn’t do this). If you buy the digital files and want to upload them to facebook yourself to share them with family and friends around the world, go ahead, tag and share them, just remember to give the photo credit to Cara Griffiths, Sand in my pockets…. X.