Don’t stress about having a perfectly clean home.
I have kids, I know what life is like, crumbs happen, boys miss the toilet. If you feel better doing a quick vaccum and a wipe of the benches then go for it. I won’t be checking the inside of the microwave or the leaves in your gutters. The main thing is just to remove/tidy any objects on floors and furniture that you don’t want photographed.
Don’t stress about having perfectly ironed clothing, the Queen isn’t coming.
If your kids live in their undies (like mine), I really don’t care if they are in their undies. If they want to wear an Elsa costume or batman mask, that is cool too. This is their childhood and as much their story as it is yours. If you’re all dressed up like you’re heading off to your cousins wedding it won’t look sooooo realistic.
For these sessions I’d aim for a nice version of what you’d usually wear at home. Having said that, I’ve put together a handy guide with a few things to avoid and pointers if you feel you need it - view my What to Wear guide
Don’t stress about your kids misbehaving.
I have kids, I get it. Sometimes they are angels, sometimes life happens. I’m more than happy to go with the flow and let them run the show. I might make suggestions on where to go or what to do next, but if they aren’t keen we can change it up, whatever you would do in your regular day. Otherwise negotiations, tears and tantrums are part of the everyday, so I might photograph that too!
Your mood effects your photos.
I know it’s hard, trying to get your kids, your partner, your house, your SELF ready. But once we get started it’s time to leave all that behind. This time and space is for you to connect with your family. Have fun with them, laugh with them, ask them questions, play. If you’re having fun, so are they and it will come through in your photos.
Don't forget to show affection to your partner.
Don't force it, but don't be shy because I'm there. I won't ask you to kiss or do anything cheesey, but if you might normally hold hands or put your arm around them, any kind of physical affection makes for a much nicer photo than standing 1.5m apart. Remember, you might just be in the background of photos of your kids too, so the less filthy looks you give each other the better!
Some other stuff...
I also have a questionnaire you will receive, if you can please answer as much of this as you can (any time before our session), it really helps me to create the best photos of you, that truly show you and your family as you really are.
If you have any more questions at all check my FAQ's or welcome to email, DM or call to chat!
A few notes on what to expect…
These sessions are SUPER chilled. Whatever you guys would normally do in your house, that’s what I want to take pictures of. If you’re not a cookie baking Mum, please, don’t bake cookies for your session. Grab a box of tiny teddies and spend the time doing something you love. These sessions are not about pretending to be perfect, they are about capturing the real joy in the everyday things you actually do as a family.
We’ll usually start off indoors. As much as I like to just capture things as they are happening, it’s great if we can have 2 or 3 ‘activities’ planned. This is your time with your family, so relax, be silly, have fun and most of all be present. I might give you a few ideas about the best place to stand/sit/dance etc just so we are making the most of the light and space in your home, but otherwise the more you can forget I am there, the better. We will spend an hour or so in your home with as much time as we need on each ‘activity’ to get all the shots we need. If the kids are over it or want to do something else, that’s cool! Happy to go with the flow on the day. The best photos naturally happen when they are having fun. It’s all about capturing their real personalities, not just the smiles.
After all the home shots, we will head to your outdoor location (or vice versa depending on what we decide is best time-wise). This may be on your property/your backyard or we can head to your favourite local park or beach. Just to keep things moving it would be best if you can have everything you want to bring ready to go before I arrive, but I’ll grab a few shots of everyone getting ready to head out, if people aren’t happy with their outfit choice or drink bottle, I might photograph that too, that’s all part of life with kids! We will aim to have around an hour of shoot time outdoors, and finish up as the sun sets. If you are wanting a few more traditional (still relaxed) ‘family photos’ we can grab those as soon as we arrive, then you’re free to play and explore as you usually would, bring a wine and forget I’m there!
Firstly, THANK YOU for booking this session with me, I understand it’s not so easy to invite someone into your home to capture your lives ‘for real’ but these sessions hold a VERY dear place in my heart as I know how truly special these photos will be for you and your family, not just now but even more so as the years pass.
HOW TO PREP