Light. It can make or break a photo session.
For outdoor sessions, I like to start photographing early evening about an hour before sunset or early morning (15 minutes before sunrise) in order to take advantage of the best light possible. This time of the day is known as Golden Hour when the light is very soft and flattering on the skin.
During the summer when the sun only sets at 7.30 pm, keeping children out this late can sometimes pose a problem especially when I’m dealing with babies and munchkins of 6 years and under.
TIP 1 : NAPS, SNACKS & WET WIPES
To overcome this I always advise the parents to let the little ones have a nap in the afternoon as late as possible and something to eat before the session, this way they should be in a reasonable humour and stay awake for the shoot.
Also think of possibly bringing a couple of healthy nibbles or drinks to snack on too in case the little ones get hungry and cranky during the shoot, please avoid sugar at all costs as this just winds them up even more. Wet wipes are a handy thing to bring along as well, let’s face it, kids are messy!
TIP 2 : STAY CALM AND CARRY ON
If however despite all our no sugar precautions, we have a melt down, or kids start pulling each others hair – don’t panic, it’s not an issue and I will document everything as it happens and we’ll still get fabulous images. It’s vital though for the parents to stay calm otherwise the situation can really escalate.
The other bonus of staying calm is that when it’s time for you, the parents to have some photos taken alone, just the two of you without the munchkins, your relaxed and happy state will reflect in your images. You can’t hide emotion from the camera. So relax, everything is under control even if it doesn’t feel that way. I got you.
TIP 3 : BRING A CHANGE OF CLOTHES
It can get chilly as the sun begins to set so make sure you are all dressed warmly enough or have a jacket, shawl or jumper to put on if the weather turns cool.
Some Moms bath the little ones before the shoot and pack PJ’s to change into for when we are done with the session, that way the munchkins can go straight to bed when they get home if they want to.
“There was brotherhood between people who had fed from the same breast, a kinship that even time could not break. – Amir”
― Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner
“A touch communicates what can’t be said.”
― Marty Rubin
“Soak up every moment, be generous with your love, and be thankful for those who love us back.”
― Jacquelyn Middleton, Until the Last Star Fades
“Your children are not your children.
They are sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you.
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.”
― Kahlil Gibran
“I peek up at his features, at the crooked grin I want to savor, at the color in his eyes I’d use to paint a million pictures.”
― Tahereh Mafi, Shatter Me
“Do you think I’m pretty?
I think you’re beautiful
You are so beautiful, it hurts sometimes.”
― Richelle Mead, Vampire Academy
“Let there be spaces in your togetherness, And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping. For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together, yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.”
― Khalil Gibran, The Prophet