Last week I took a lovely relaxed walk along the riverside with newly engaged Annalise and Michael, we visited Berwick Castle and ‘The Boat’ - a beautiful boat sculpture made out of driftwood by a local resident. You don’t have to go far in Berwick for some stunning backdrops and locations.
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Recently some children from Drama classes, ‘Scripts to Stage’ in Berwick have been selected and signed up to an agent so I have started taking portfolio head and full body shots which bring out their individual looks, these images will appear in Spotlight magazine (which lands on casting directors desks all over the world), it is a very exciting opportunity for them and I hope the photographs will make them shine out from the rest, fingers crossed for some great acting and extras parts!
Elaine and Wayne wanted some photographs as memories of living and bringing up their little boys in the Greenses near Berwick Beach as they are moving house and wanted to mark the occasion. We walked around to the Stanks for a woodland type background before going down to the beach to build sandcastles. I can't say the session started that well as the wee one head planted the ground and gained an egg on his head but he managed to pull himself around after a good hug from mum, these boys are made of tough stuff!
Lisa chose 3 locations for her beautiful family to have their photography session, we started at the family home, in the garden and inside for a few then we went to a local park which was down by the stream, we ended up at Cocklawburn beach (it was a good idea to end there because, sand). After looking through our what to wear guide, Lisa had 3 outfits outfit ideas so we matched them up with the locations before we set off, I would usually advise against 3 changes as children can become impatient but these two were troopers right through. I loved this shoot and I'd love know which location you prefer, let me know in the comments below, beach, park or home... I think my favourite was the beach at the end of the day - it was that really misty weekend that we had, remember? It was like pea soup at the beach!
Let me know your fave location in the comments below :)
Linda wanted some fun photographs of her lovely grandchildren at the beach, these kids had a great relationship together as cousins and we all had a fab time!
We started the session at the studio (see last pic above) but all agreed that we prefered the outdoor shots most.
Thanks to Mel and James for having me at their super informal wedding party, everyone had great fun at Marshall Meadows in Berwick. James and Mel married at Brighton a few weeks earlier (same day as the Royal Wedding!) so the party in Berwick was to celebrate with friends and family from home. Congratulations!
After taking a break from weddings over the last couple of years, here I was shooting a pre-wedding session for Chloe and Martyn on Saturday who are getting wed this year!
I have been photographing Chloe, Martyn, and their 2 children for the last 5 years (starting with a lovely black and white maternity session if I recall correctly) so when they asked me to photograph their wedding I almost squealed with excitement - Chloe has the most amazing taste and the venue they have chosen together looks utterly gorgeous. https://www.cherrytrees-kelso.co.uk/
I thought this would be a good session to blog about as it is quite 'typical' now for a pre wedding session to include the couples children and pets, including children allows them to get used to my being there and photographing them with a big camera ahead of the wedding day which means they wont find my unobtrusive approach at all unusual or unfamiliar at the wedding, making the big day much more relaxed for everyone involved.
Ooops! Well we did still manage to turn things around and get some lovely family shots on the beach..
We then left the kids with granny and grandpa and headed off, out of sight for a few couple photos in preparation of the big day! I always think it is a good idea to book a session like this before a wedding, alongside creating a beautiful set of portraits to mark your engagement I can show you both how to look your very best together, Ill pose you in a way that looks as natural as possible.
Here we are on the way home minus a bunch of balloons but plus 2 penny floater balls, compliments of Granny and Grandpa who kindly came along to help with the Daphne the dog and also to give us some time without the children to practice the couple photography!
It’s not long now until Christmas so I thought I'd post 7 quick tips on taking better group photos on Christmas Day that might be useful to you, even a couple small adjustments to the way you take these photos can have massive visible results.
1. Time it well: Group photos are usually taken at the end of the evening or day when everyone is looking at their worst. For a ‘fresher’ shot take it once everyone has arrived.
2. Plan ahead: think about where you might take the shot, your home will likely be all twinkly with lovely decorations so be sure to include some of your favourites to give the photo some context, make sure you choose a position where your group will fit and where there is enough light for the shot (windows light is great, make sure the group are facing the window).
3. Pose the group: In most cases your group will pose itself pretty naturally (we’ve all done it before). Tall people will go to the back, short people to the front. But there are other things you can do to add to the photo’s composition: Make sure no ones head is hiding behind another person and tell everyone to raise their chins a little – they’ll thank you later when they see the shot without any double chins!
4. Continuous shots: One of the best ways to avoid the problems of not everyone looking just right in a shot is to take multiple photos quickly. I often use my iPhone in ’burst mode’ when taking photos of people and shoot in short bursts of shots. I find that the first shot is often no good but that the one or two directly after it often give a group that looks a little less posed and more relaxed.
- To use burst mode on an iPhone:
- Launch the camera app from your iPhone or iPad's Home screen.
- Hold down the Shutter button or Volume button to take a burst of pictures.
- iOS will automatically choose the best photos from the burst. If you don't like photos it chooses, you can choose your own.
5. Go outdoors: If you don't feel that your house has the space for everyone in front of the tree, take your camera outdoors for a lovely pre or post dinner wintery family walk but remember the sun goes down just before 4pm in December so make sure you go out before that.
Yes YOU should smile! There’s nothing worse than a grumpy stressed out person taking photos. Have fun and enjoy the process of getting your shots and you’ll find the group will too.
Get ready to enjoy better group shots!
P.S. You are probably feeling a little bit stressed out trying to think of what to get everybody for Christmas at this point, well.. I can help you with some amazing Christmas gift vouchers for mums of young children (or young children who love to dress up)..
Our limited edition mini studio shoots are fun themed shoots, perfect for children and available on different dates throughout the year, check out our mini shoot page for ideas of what they could do.. (think, fairys, superheros, disney princesses....)
You can choose vouchers from the following:
£195 – a themed mini session of her choice plus a 16×20 wall box frame – a luxe gift that will let them hang their favourite image in their house right away. Perfect for a family who just moved, added a new member, or deserves special attention.
£100 – a mini session plus a set of 3 archival prints – perfect for someone who would love a mini session, but who might not have space for a large piece right now or you aren’t sure what they’d want.
£25 – gift someone a session with one print. Perfect for repeat Happy Photography customers who are already familiar with the photography process.
Just call us on 01289 302832 we can arrange this over the phone and post out the gift voucher pack to you.