It’s time to treat the camera-loving mum in your life…. I hope one of these ideas goes down a storm and makes for great Mothers Day!
If you’d like to find out more about the relaxed, on-location bespoke Family Portrait Sessions I offer, you can find out more here
I also run Photography Workshops in Woking, Surrey – including Smartphone Photography and Photography for Parents – and you can buy personalised Gift Vouchers for any Workshop that come gift-wrapped and with free P&P.
I always advise clients to go right back to the beginning and think about WHO they want their photos to appeal to. Hopefully you already have your customer profile/avatar – and if you haven’t, you should definitely do so – Jonathan Howkins has lots of helpful information on this to get you going. Knowing you are talking to will help spark ideas & set the tone for the whole photoshoot.
If you can write a full photography brief, chock full of creative ideas from your marketing department, to hand over to a photographer to work to, then great! However, the reality for most SMEs is that they might ‘kind of’ have some vague ideas but really need some input & guidance. Find a creative photographer that will be more than happy to chat through ideas and make suggestions & you get massive added value.
I can’t emphasise this one enough – a good commercial photoshoot requires maximum planning, so that you can get the most out of it. I always provide a provisional shot list beforehand , which will have been fully discussed so we both have in writing exactly what we want to capture – an experienced photographer will have a good idea of what ‘s achievable in your timeframe.
Once you have your own library of gorgeous bespoke images, then do make sure you make the most of them! Ideally you should be using them for a full range of purposes – within your website, for a wide variety of platforms within social media, for articles & blogging, for printed usage, for exhibitions… the list is endless. And don’t be afraid to re-purpose images either – the more people see your images, the more they’ll associate them with your brand and you start to get instant visual recognition.
Images 3 & 4 used with kind permission from The Guildford Hub
We began by talking about some common-sense rules with photo permissions, then we headed out into the sunshine. It was only just above freezing at the beginning, but this gave us opportunities to capture frost in all it’s natural beauty! The location of the Workshop was around Goldsworth Lake in Woking, Surrey – a really picturesque area that also has the contrast of a brightly coloured play area for fun and structural photography. We headed there first whilst it was empty and we chatted about how light affects our photos and different ways of playing with it to get creative effects. I wanted to keep the talking part to a minimum, so the whole workshop had bite-sized teaching, then immediate practise, whilst I went round to every person to coach and give feedback and encouragement.
After having lots of fun practising in the playpark, and also learning how to get the BEST photos of your friends (super-important at this age!) we went out around the lake edge itself. Even in the depths of winter, we found tons of interesting things to photograph – and realised that if you just use your eyes first – you will find always find something that draws you in. We also learnt how to give a photo a ‘wow-factor’ by trying a few different compositional tricks! We had a brilliant half-time group session where each person showed their favourite shot so far, before heading back out to learn more, including how sometimes simplicity is key and also how the brain and eye works together to find a photo interesting.
It was incredibly rewarding to see how quickly these young adults picked up what I was teaching and they were so open to experimentation! I loved watching them having so much fun with a camera and it was especially rewarding when they came up to me with a photo they were really excited about.
I was genuinely blown away with what everyone captured during the Workshop! Here’s some photos to give you a flavour of the morning.
1) Autumn colour = impact
Autumn as a season provides us with a vast kaleidoscope of colours…. Look outside and it’s happening right now! The greens of summer are already starting to turn into yellows, oranges, reds and browns. There is no doubt about it, autumn makes for the most amazing backdrops to photos and I know this is why it’s my busiest time for Family Portraits. Woodlands and heathlands are both great places to start looking for stunning backdrops to use. Keep your eyes peeled around your area for the best local colour.
Autumn really does turn the outdoors into a complete natural playground… And you can turn this to your advantage and capture some really playful photos of your children. Think throwing leaves up in the air, hunting for conkers and acorns, making giant leaf piles (to then jump on of course)… There’s so many opportunities to let them have fun whilst capturing it through your lens.
3) Incredible light
As much as I love summer, there is no doubt that it’s challenging in terms of the very harsh summer brightness. There are ways around this of course, but in Autumn the sun is lower in the sky and the light is so much softer, especially at the beginning and end of the daylight hours. If you have early risers, then try photographing them outside soon after the sun has risen for really gorgeous early light.
4) Rock the clothes
Autumn allows us to be creative with our kids clothing… Not only do you have the flexibility to introduce super-cute accessories into your photos like knitted hats and scarves, you can also really play about with colours. You can choose your kids clothing colours to either tone in beautifully with the autumn palette (think oranges, reds, yellows) or give a real POP of contrasting colour (think blues through to purples & pinks).
5) Autumn photos make wonderful Christmas gifts!
Sorry for mentioning that word in October but…. It would feel pretty good to be super organised in advance of the festive season, wouldn’t it? Capture some autumn photography of your children and you have ready-made gifts to give.