I love to see clients come back time and time again as their kids grow older - it's wonderful to regularly document how much bigger they are and their developing personalities! I first photographed 4 year old Jack at his naming ceremony way back when he was a baby, and then again when he was just learning to walk (I still have a photograph of him in my child and family portfolio looking up at the slide at the playground) - he seems so grown up now!
Natural outdoor family photography
As this collection of portraits show, children's photography doesn’t have to be complicated, or styled, or heavy with props.. running around in the grass on Hampstead Heath with sticks to play with is all that was needed here! Neither do you have to worry about what to wear - a simple vest top and pants in soft pastel colours were perfect for this natural summer photo shoot. Neutral clothing in gentle colours make sure that the focus is fully on the child's expressions (or in family photos, on the interaction between parent and child). Sometimes bright colours can be a little distracting in photographs, and can also reflect unflattering colours onto the skin which can be difficult to remove and so I advise avoiding these.
Best time of day for kids' photos
As a photographer, it's fair to say that I am a little obsessed with beautiful light! As a rule this means aiming to schedule my outdoor family photo shoots as early in the day as possible, or in the evenings during summer. However, I appreciate this simply does not work when photographing children, especially little ones, when there are nap times and dinner times to take into account! There is still soft, luminous light to be found throughout the day, even when the sun is high in the sky - if you know where to look and how to use it. For example, these photographs were all taken around 3pm in the afternoon and the portraits are filled with soft, flattering light on the skin and light sparkling in the eyes.
I wanted to illustrate how much I strive to capture a whole range of natural expressions when I'm photographing children, and not just the big smiles for the camera. As far as possible in the space of one photo shoot, I think it's really important to photograph kid's personalities as they are - cheeky, pensive and everything in between. Often the really good, relaxed stuff happens right at the end of a session. Here's a few of my favourites of Jack!