Slice of Life - family photoshoot in Brockley

I love meeting new people and, as a photographer, I am lucky that I get to do that all the time. A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of doing a “Slice of Life” shoot in Brockley. I had no idea what to expect as beforehand I had only spoken to Anna over the phone to go through the outline of the shoot. As soon as I arrived at their place though, I knew it was going to be a fun and relaxed family shoot. 

We started of upstairs in the play room to get the kids (but also the parents!) used to my camera. I mainly work with a Nikon 35mm when I’m shooting in family homes. There’s often very little space (we are in London after all!) and I find that a 35mm lens allows me to capture my subjects relative to their environment. It really helps you to tell the family’s story and gives the pictures that true “documentary feeling”. This means I’m often quite close to my subjects so it’s extremely important to make the family feel comfortable around you and the camera before you start shooting.

The kids were  gorgeous and loved every minute of the shoot - especially the little girl, Leela. We had a lot of fun dancing to “Frozen” and she absolutely rocked that princess dress. Niko, the little boy, was super chilled and it was lovely to spend some time with this amazing (and extremely relaxed!) family. It honestly didn’t feel like work and that’s a great feeling!


My first wedding shoot!

Last week I did something a bit out of my comfort zone - I did my very first wedding shoot! This was something completely different from my usual family photoshoot. This time I wasn’t chasing kids with my camera, but instead had to direct my subjects - something I normally avoid doing during my family photoshoots. 

I’d already had a great consultation with the bride-to-be, and I knew the venue having been there myself previously. I also thought about what I loved about the photographers at my own wedding, and the kinds of wedding shoots and images that I most loved. But even though I was well prepared I have to admit that I was quite nervous on the day of the shoot. A wedding is such a special day and you basically can’t afford to make any mistakes on the job. There are so many important moments that you really need to capture - and you only have one chance, if you miss them they’re gone. 

I felt incredibly honoured to be part of Anna and Richard’s very small and intimate wedding ceremony which was held in the Southwark Registry Office in Peckham. It was just the couple, their two witnesses and…me! It was important to me that I didn’t interfere in their special day, that they could enjoy it ‘in the moment’ and that I could blend into the background to document it without disrupting the flow.

The ceremony itself was lovely - and I was constantly shooting to try to catch every moment: the rings, the tears, the kiss…  and we were also able to continue the shoot in the garden of the venue, and were blessed with a really lovely sunny day that helped bring added warmth and colour to the photos. 

As soon as I got home I transferred the images to my laptop - to see them on a proper screen, and begin the careful process of selecting and editing. 

One thing I love about wedding and event photography is the way the timeline of the event can help you tell the story of the day and the people involved. 

I’ve tried to combine the big events in their (short!) wedding day with those little moments that speak volumes about them and their relationship with each other, and with their friends.

I hope you like the pictures!


Autumn family photoshoot in East Dulwich, South London

As autumn really gets going, and it gets colder and darker in London, the busy summer playgrounds are suddenly deserted, and there are no more picnics in the park or ice-creams in the sun… I’ve always struggled with the cold. If I could have 25 degrees all year round I would definitely sign up for that! But there are some surprising benefits to autumn! 

What I do like about these colder days in October and November is that the light can be absolutely beautiful. On a sunny day the colours are amazing - blue skies, orange and red leaves, green grass - and absolutely great for a family photoshoot outdoors. Wrap them (and yourself!) up warm and get out there to enjoy a clear, crisp day.  It’s easy to get caught up in work - and for me that means photographing other peoples’ children and family days - and not end up with any great pictures of the time you spend with your own family. So yesterday I took my camera to the playground and had a great shoot with my one-year old. 

Funnily enough I think it’s harder to photograph your own children, whether you’re a professional or not, than someone else’s. When I shoot other families I can disappear into the background and capture the spontaneous interactions between child and parent, grandparent or sibling. When it’s my own daughter she instinctively looks for me and comes to me, making it hard to get those elusive candid shots that are often the most powerful. My husband certainly has to work overtime to keep our daughter entertained if I have my camera with me!

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