The Pines Family Session | The Crosby Family

Sonia and Andrew had decided that they didn’t want to get newborn photos of their little boy Easton, but that they wanted to get some taken as a family now that he was a few months old. The day before our first planned shoot, Sonia’s husband came home with a sunburnt face – oops!! We decided to reschedule their session so that his face would be a little less red in the photos!! We met a few weeks later at The Pines in Wanneroo, and although the sun was hiding from us that day, we still captured some beautiful images of this gorgeous family.

One particular thing I noticed was the beautiful affection both Sonia and Andrew have for their boys. Effortless kisses and face strokes, and real un-posed connection. These are the moments I love capturing the most – the cuddles you give your little boy and the way he gives you nose kisses back, the fun moments of dancing and flying and rides on Daddy’s shoulders, and all the little moments that make your family your own. Sonia also wanted me to capture the little swirly bald patch on Easton’s head – that little symbol of babyhood! As with all photo sessions, my aim is to give my families a fun and relaxed experience so that these natural little moments and connections can be captured. These are the moments I value the most and that I love to share with my families.

If you’d like to book a session for yourself, Contact me here and we can have a chat! You can also view my Family Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

 

In-home Newborn Lifestyle Session | Harrison

Anyone who knows me, knows that Newborn Lifestyle sessions are food for my soul, and this particular session did NOT disappoint!! Kat has 18 month old twin girls Sophia and Violet, and new baby Harrison has recently been welcomed into their family (I won’t say that he’s ‘completed’ the family just yet – I think there might be the possibility of more new additions!!). Kat contacted me while she was pregnant because she wanted to capture some newborn images different to the posed ones she captured with her twin girls, and loved the natural and relaxed lifestyle vibe. I’m so glad that she did, and that I was able to capture this most beautiful family in their gorgeous home.

Lifestyle sessions are just perfect when you have other children – it gives them the freedom to be in a familiar environment, to play with their own toys, and have breaks as needed (or in this case, go down for their afternoon nap!). Both girls were a little cautious at the start (there were tears, I won’t lie!), but we got out ‘Where is The Green Sheep’, did a little bed jumping, and soon all was right with the world! These sessions are all about going with the flow, and working around the needs of your little people. When the girls were upset, they had a little break with dad….when they were hungry, they had a little snack from the kitchen…when they wanted to be active and ride their bikes, we included that in the photos (after all, that’s all part of their story!). They weren’t forced to sit still and be actively involved in the photos the entire time, they were simply allowed to just be. And despite any challenge, or any little bout of tears, we were able to capture some absolutely stunning images.

As for Harrison, this little guy was super happy just to be feeding from his mumma pretty much the entire session! In the brief moments where he wasn’t attached to his fave lady, he was cuddling with his Daddy, behaving all ridiculously cute for the camera, or being observed by his big sisters who were fascinated when we placed him on a blanket on the ground!

Kat had mentioned wanting to get some images taken of her post partum body and I’m soooo glad she did. These images have to be amongst my absolute favourites – not only is Kat insanely beautiful (has she really only had a child weeks before??!!), but celebrating these changes to your body is such a massive and beautiful part of the story. I know it can be hard to feel beautiful when you’ve just had a baby. Things don’t fit the same and your body is different in so many ways, and yet by capturing images like this it can show you just how beautiful it really is. This is the body that grew your baby, and is now feeding your baby on the outside. This is magical and precious, and should 100 percent be celebrated.

I’ve actually really struggled to choose images to share with you on the blog, because I just seriously love them all!! To me, they all tell part of the story and so choosing favourites is pretty much impossible!! But here you go – a little glimpse into Harrison’s Newborn Lifestyle session!!

If you’d love to capture some memories for yourself, Contact me here. You can also view my Lifestyle Newborn Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

Our Story | April

April has been a BIG month! I’ve also been behind in editing my own photos, but I was determined to get them done. Giving myself a monthly deadline definitely helps me to prioritise keeping up with our own story. And here it is for April – and it’s a big one!!

Alexi and Alby’s Birthday Party

Alexi and Alby’s birthdays are 3 weeks apart, so this year we decided to celebrate with the family on the same day. I’m all about low key events (and yes, even though it was just immediate family – when your husband is one of 6 kids, every get together is an ‘event’!!). This means that we usually just get take away and keep it all simple. Simplicity is my friend in a world of daily chaos!!

Alby’s 2nd birthday

April 12th was Alby’s second birthday. He’s my youngest baby and my last baby, and turning two just brings out a lot of emotions in me, because it really means that he’s not a baby anymore. He’s a real little person with a real personality (a crazy, loud, energetic one at that!). He’s the last of so many things for me. My last pregnancy. My last birth. My last breastfeed. The last crawling baby, and learning to walk baby. The last ‘firsts’ of everything. And it’s gone fast. Crazy, crazy fast. I know in the next year he’s set to grow and change so much yet again. So for now, I’ll just enjoy the way he is and capture him whenever I can. These photos are taken on his birthday as he opened his presents, including a card written by Louie and a watermelon card from Alexi (because he just loves watermelon!). Oh and shh don’t tell him that it’s actually Christmas wrapping paper!

Alexi and Louie

I always love capturing Alexi and Louie together – they have such a beautiful relationship. In these images he’s going to her for cuddles when he’s upset, and then in return he ran to sit next to her on the couch when she hit her head and needed an ice pack. Those two have massive beautiful hearts.

Chocolate face!

So you know how before you have kids you always say you’ll never let them have ‘naughty’ food, and then you know how you do pretty well with the first one….well, there’s pretty much no hope once you get to your 4th kid! I don’t think he’s too unhappy about it either!

Craft table

As usual, there’s always activity on our craft table. Louie of course is there, and now Alby is starting to join in on the fun too! Although to be honest he spends most of his time getting up and down from the chair!!

Easter morning!

Easter bunny was busy in our house and hid soooo many small eggs around the house! They all go into a shared bowl, and we’ll probably spend the rest of the year eating them!!

Easter with the cousins

One of the things the kids love most about special events is being able to spend some time with their cousins! It’s filled with mostly boys – only the older two are girls, and now the youngest as well. All the rest are crazy boys!

Who needs toys?!

Our Easter dinner was held at my Sister in laws house. They’d just moved in and so had a lot of boxes left over – turns out this is all the kids need to have fun! They were entertained for hours in these boxes!!

Jumping on the bed

So one positive to having a photographer mother is that every now and then you get to jump on the bed so she can get some photos! Bonus points for wearing matching pj’s!

Fun and games

Alby in a bucket of soapy water, and bike races in the backyard. These are moments the kids created by themselves, and are the moments I love to capture.

Quiet moments

Does anyone else’s kids set up comfy spots so they can talk to their sibling in the toilet?? Two of these images show just that – cushions set up outside the toilet so that they can keep talking!

Alexi

I love photographing this girl. She’s so beautiful in every way. Whenever I tell people that I have four kids, they always say how much help the oldest one would be. And they’re right. But I don’t know if they realise just how right they actually are. This girl is absolutely amazing.

The washing machine

Lastly, this is another image which features a lot because Alby continue to love the washing machine. Whenever it’s on, he sits and watches it (and sometimes still turns it off!).

 

If you’d love for me to capture some of your own family memories, Contact me and we can chat about whether you’d like your session to be on location or in your own home! You can also look through my Family Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

 

Hyde Park Maternity Session | Kele

Not only is this beautiful mummy pregnant to TWINS, she also had just flown down from her home in Karratha two days prior so that she can give birth in Perth, she has a gorgeous (but energetic!) toddler, and her husband was flying back to Karratha the very next day. She contacted me last minute as they’d had to cancel the maternity session they’d booked in Karratha due to her son Saxon being unwell, and time was running out to capture these memories for her! I was so glad that I was able to fit her in, and especially glad that Adam was able to be a part of it before he flew back to Karratha the next day.

Including partners and older children in your maternity session is just so special. Although the purpose of the session is to celebrate mum’s growing bump and the magic of pregnancy, life also changes a lot for everyone else too. Freezing those final moments of being the family as you are now is something you’ll never regret. It’s hard not to look at your oldest child sometimes and feel sad that this part of life is ending. I know, because I felt that too. But there’s also so much excitement for what’s to come – this magic that’s being born into your family!

Saxon was the cutest little boy and is so lucky to be getting not one, but TWO little babies to look after – a brother AND a sister!! He arrived on his little orange balance bike, and was incredibly amazing throughout the whole session. It’s so obvious how much this little boy is loved, and how hard he loves back. He’s going to be the greatest big brother! I really wanted to capture some moments just between Saxon and his parents too. These moments where he’s still an only child and where he has their whole attention. As Kele said, he really doesn’t know what he’s in for! I think they’ll be amazing though – what a perfect little family who were an absolute pleasure to spend time with.

If you’d love to capture some memories of your own pregnancy, I’d love to chat to you about it! No matter how hard it is some days, or how you feel you look, pregnancy is amazing and it’s fleeting. Every woman is beautiful and this moment in your life deserves to be captured. Contact me here and we can chat about your session! You can also have a look through my Maternity Portfolio for further examples of my work.

 

In-home Newborn Lifestyle Session | Mia

There’s something about walking into the home of a couple who have just had their first baby. There’s an air of fresh excitement, of unhinged wonder as they look at their new baby. Their smiles are always so big, so raw. Of course they are for everyone with a new baby, but there is always that little bit of extra magic when it’s the first. Their whole world has changed, and although it comes with its challenges, it’s such a special time. I always think back to when we had our first daughter – I wish I could relive it all and soak it in just that bit more. I was learning everything – learning how to take care of this new little person, learning how to adapt to a new way of life, and learning how to be a mum. When you have your first baby, you are also born as a parent. You can never get that experience back. You can never have your first baby again, and you’ll never feel quite the same way again. When I look back on photos of my own first baby, I can almost smell the air again and smell her fresh skin. I can remember that indescribable feeling in the air – that feeling where everything is just so NEW. You can’t quite believe that this little person is real (except in the middle of the night when they make their presence very well known!).

Stepping into the home of Mel and Ali was like this. Their fresh enthusiasm and smiles were so beautiful – it’s actually quite contagious! They’ve become parents to the gorgeous little Mia, who was the most divine little graceful doll, and they just doted on her like she was their world. And she is. Newborn lifestyle sessions are such a beautiful and relaxed way to celebrate this new little family member. There’s no formal posing – just moments where you get to sit together, hold your baby and soak her in whilst I chat with you, stand on your furniture, and capture these early days of your new family that you can never get back. My hope is that by having these images, you’re able to relive it all just a little bit. It all goes incredibly quickly (I know, everyone says it – but it’s really so true!). In one week, one month, one YEAR, little Mia will be so different. And while each little change is so beautiful and precious, it doesn’t stop you from missing all of those little stages before. Of missing life as it was back then, even if sometimes it was hard.

I can’t leave this blog without also mentioning their most beautiful dog Nyla who I fell a little bit in love with during the shoot! She completed this  stunning family in the best way possible.

If you’d like to book a Newborn session for yourself, Contact me here. You can also view my Lifestyle Newborn Portfolio and learn more about Newborn Lifestyle sessions here. I’d love to help you tell your story and freeze this most special time in your life so that you can relive it all long after it’s passed.

 

In-home Newborn Lifestyle Session | Sofia

Arriving at Sofia’s in-home newborn lifestyle session, I was greeted by her very excited and happy big brother Alessio (who also happens to share a birthday week with her)! There are so many benefits to in-home lifestyle sessions (Not having to leave your home…memories including your own home, furniture and belongings…not needing to have your baby sleep to be posed in certain ways…the list goes on), and when you add older siblings to the mix, in-home lifestyle sessions are even more perfect. The older kids are already more comfortable because they’re in their own environment, there is no pressure on them to behave or pose a certain way, and they can come in and out as they please. As it was, Alessio was more than happy to be part of the session for most of the time, and we even captured his very FIRST hold of his baby sister! The look on his face when she was being passed to him is just priceless!!

At only 6 days old, Sofia was pretty content to just be fed and held until she became tired quite early on in the session and was put down to bed in her bassinet. Her parents insisted that she wouldn’t sleep, but there was silence for around 15 minutes so she managed to have a quick catnap on her own before waking and wanting to be fed and held again. Those early days learning about your baby and her needs are challenging at times, especially when you have a toddler running around as well. If only we could find that magic ‘sleep’ button and just make them sleep and wake when and where we want them to!! Sleep is definitely a topic you think and talk about a LOT when you have a baby. Sleep and poo, right?!

I really love these images of Sofia with her family – this time with her so little is so fleeting, and one day they’ll look back on these photos sentimentally and ‘remember when…’. Life constantly changes when you have little kids. They change. We change. Routines change. It all changes before you know it. And then you forget so much of it, until you’re reminded through a photo or a memory someone has. Capture all of the stages. All of the ‘normal moments’ which are the moments you’ll truly miss one day. I’m glad I was able to capture some of that for Sofia and her family.

If you’d like to capture some of your own special moments, Contact me here. You can also view my Lifestyle Newborn Portfolio for more gorgeous images and read What is a Newborn Lifestyle Session to learn more about one of my most favourite sessions to do.

 

First Birthday Party | Sienna

 

Last year I was there for Sienna’s Baptism, and this year I was also there for her first birthday! Meeting with clients again is always super special, because through taking your photos and spending time with you, you all become way more than simply a client! I love watching your kids grow and hearing news of events in your life, and I feel extremely lucky to have been there for two of Sienna’s special events. Her first birthday party was BEAUTIFUL! The cake was absolutely stunning, and they’d also had some gorgeous biscuits made by a friend who I think could easily sell these to other people! They had a photo memory board (I always love those!) and a wall of donuts (it took all of my will power not to eat one!), and some absolutely delicious looking food! Sienna’s dad owns a pizza shop so he made some amaaazing pizzas, and I have to admit that editing all of these photos made me hungry!! They also had face painting (check out the gorgeous dog face paint and butterfly in the gallery), and a whole lot of people there to celebrate gorgeous Sienna’s first birthday.

It can always be a little overwhelming for kids when it’s their party and suddenly there’s a crowd of people in their home giving them all this attention. Sienna felt the safest being held by her Mummy, but she did so well throughout the day, and I loved watching how her personality has grown since I saw her last. They really do change so much in that first year – it’s so cliche, but so true!! Her big sister was also gorgeous in her white dress, and capturing the joy she had when playing with her cousins was just beautiful. I absolutely loved being a part of Sienna’s birthday party, I think she had an amazing day and that her parents definitely earned a big rest afterwards!! Birthday parties are EXHAUSTING!!

If you’d like me to capture a special event for you as well, Contact me here. Having me capture your event means that you can focus on the party, and be safe in the knowledge that special moments and details will be captured for you to remember. You can also view my Events Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

Our Story – March

At the start of the year I made a little pact with myself that I’d stick to my own personal 365 project, which meant that I intended to take at least one photo every day of the year. I started off well, as most resolutions start, and then gradually faded away. I think I lasted a month and a half on this plan until I began to fail at this daily project! However, I’m still committed to making sure that I take photos of my own family, and that I continue to edit them and keep up to date with them. So here is our story for March!

School Camp!

My daughter went on her first school camp this month! I have to admit this was terrifying – for me anyway! She was so excited to go, and this definitely made it easier on me, although I do admit to some tears on my end!! She however, has this amazing way of taking everything in her stride, and simply finding the fun in everything. As she’s getting older and becoming more of her own person, I can understand more how parents let their kids go. As much as we want to keep them close and in a little bubble, when you see how much something else makes them happy, you just have to let them do it despite your own worries and fears. This parenting thing is certainly teaching me so many life lessons!!

Two year old tantrums!

Alby is not quite two yet (just a couple of weeks until his birthday), but he’s already showing signs of the Two year old tantrums! Triggers seem to be any time anyone leaves in the car without him, anytime we drop the kids off without going into the school, or anytime he’s not allowed food. Sigh. Fun times ahead.

Kohen’s strawberry

Kohen was excited that his plant grew a strawberry this month – it may have been small, but it was a strawberry nonetheless! Since getting his trees and plants for his birthday last year, he’s been dedicated in watering them everyday, and I’ve even watched him through the window as he’s been talking to them! I think plants are good for him. He has such a nurturing side that he can find difficult to show, so he’s able to let that out with his plants.

Art with Louie

Louie has this beautiful way of focusing on a task. He’ll often go to the craft table and just sit there for ages drawing and creating works of art. He’s made everyone a birthday card – even if it hasn’t been their birthday – and sometimes he makes things for his little kindy friends. I love watching him create. He’s so calm and beautiful.

Alexi’s birthday photo

I took Alexi outside to take some photos to celebrate her 11th birthday. I’d always wanted to try the photo where I hold onto her face as I take the photo. I love how she instinctively held onto my arm as well – it just shows how naturally loving she is. I also love the photos of her laughing – she’s such a happy girl and I love capturing her genuine laughter. I can almost hear it as I look at the photo.

“Let me out!”

As we were taking her photo out the front, we noticed Alby trying to get out by pressing his hand up against the window. I forgot to mention that this is another trigger for his tantrum – not being let outside! He walked away before I could get the photo, so I got Kohen to come over and encourage him to repeat pressing up against the window.

Louie’s smile

One evening Louie randomly said to me ‘Mummy do you want to take a photo of me and I’ll smile?’. I think he was trying to be extra thoughtful and nice, and he knows that’s the way to my heart! Of course I said yes, so outside we went and he turned on the Louie charm!

Alexi’s 11th birthday morning

Birthday’s always make me sentimental – it’s just a reminder of how time is moving on, and it’s another age I have to let go of. I miss all the little Alexi’s along the way – the ‘just born’ Alexi, the ‘two year old Alexi’, the ‘5 year old Alexi’…and now the ’10 year old Alexi’. I’m pretty sure my kids think I’m crazy, although the older two understand it a little more now that they see the younger two growing up. I don’t think you can ever be prepared for how bittersweet it is to watch your kids grow up. This is a big reason why photos are so important to me. I look back on a photo and I can be there in the memory again.

On this morning, Louie sat with Alexi as she opened her presents and he also gave her the card he’d made for her. Those two have a beautiful bond.

Alexi’s Rose

Alexi’s middle name is Rose and her Nanna calls her ‘Roses’. For her birthday, her Nanna and Grandad bought her beautiful roses in a vase with the words ‘Roses’ written on it.

Alexi’s birthday party

Alexi and her friends celebrated her birthday at Cake Tinz ‘n Thingz which is a cake decorating place. She went there last year as well and loved it. She’s always loved baking and cake decorating, so this is the perfect party for her, and also lots of fun. Bonus is they get to take their cakes home with them!

 

And that’s March over. How FAST is this year going??!! If you’d like to book me for a session before the year is over, contact me here. You can also check out my Family Portfolio.

 

In-home Newborn Lifestyle Session | June

Katy received a gift voucher from her sister in law for a photo session from me, and decided to use it when their new baby June was born and her parents were over visiting from the US. June was only a few days old when I met them at their home, along with June’s gorgeous older sister Hazel. Little June slept the entire time, and was happy to be passed around and cuddled and kissed by all the people in their home (Hazel even had her first hold with her while I was there!). It was so special to include Katy’s parents as well – they’ve been a big help in the home while they’ve been staying, and it’s so special that they were able to be there in the early days with their new Granddaughter. I spoke to them about how hard it must be to live so far away, and how spending this quality time together is so important. The last time they visited was when Hazel was just born, so they plan to organise another holiday without waiting for another baby to be born!

Newborn sessions are just as much for the siblings as they are for the new baby. I love capturing the connection between siblings, but also between the older child and her parents. Their relationship evolves as a new person comes into the family, and it can take awhile to find their new normal. Making sure that they still get focused attention is so important, and I absolutely love watching them all play together and cuddle, and this was very evident all throughout the session. Older siblings also often dictate the flow of a session. When they need a break, we give them one. If they’re feeling it, we take advantage of it. If they need something to keep them involved, we get out their books or stuffed toys and take the focus off of their photo being taken, and onto another activity that they enjoy.

I truly love capturing new families together, it’s such a magical time of life! If you’d like me to capture some memories for your own new family, contact me here. You can also view my Lifestyle Newborn Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

Hyde Park Family Session | The Donnan Family

Hyde Park is one of the few locations where shooting outside of Golden Hour can still produce some gorgeous images, so it’s also a great choice for young kids who can’t stay up until sunset. I met with Jackie, Ben and their two daughters Scarlett and Lucy at Hyde Park last week to capture some images of their family together as she wanted a relaxed family session. I’m all about relaxed family sessions, and I absolutely loved the energy that the two girls had – they were running, rolling around, doing cartwheels and generally being fun and silly. I actually encourage this during a session!! I really don’t want parents to stress about their kids sitting still and looking at the camera – their job is to just have fun, and my job is to capture it all. I promise you that no matter how energetic your kids are, I’ll always find a way to capture them, and it’s usually these genuine moments of play and connection that are the best images from the session. Scarlett in particular was FULL of energy and fun and I truly loved her enthusiasm for the camera and for simply having fun with her sister and her parents. Little Lucy was a little more apprehensive of the camera, but that’s totally okay. Kids don’t need to be pushed to be in the frame – the less ‘pushing’ we do, the more likely they are to just relax and join in. Plus, those moments of tired cuddles are just beautiful to capture on their own.

Scarlett and Lucy also have a beautiful relationship and this was special to capture. They were affectionate and full of fun and joy together – at one point I turned around and Lucy was sprawled across Scarlett’s back! Of course this is a moment worth capturing! Even Lucy’s bunnies joined in on the photo shoot which is gorgeous as her bunnies are such an important part of who she is during this time in her life. Thank you for letting me capture some beautiful images of your gorgeous family Jackie!

If you’d like to book a fun, relaxed family session for yourself, Contact me here. You can also view my Family Portfolio for more examples of my work.

 

 

 

 

Joondalup Extended Family Session | The Lee Family

Last year I captured Amy’s family photo session and this year her and her brothers bought a voucher from me for their mum Mandy’s 60th birthday. Amy is a photographer as well, but it’s so important to also be in the frame, and to capture some images of their entire family together. Photographers also need a photographer sometimes!! They booked in their extended family session, and we chose a spot in Joondalup which overlooks the lake Mandy lives, and the pine forest opposite Amy. Getting the whole family together can always be a challenge with such a large group, but it’s so worth it! It’s not often you get to see how you all look together, and keep some memories of how life looks for you all right now. It’s also a perfect opportunity for cousins to get together, and to watch their special relationship. Little Emily loves her real live baby cousin Taj (who wouldn’t – he is gorgeous!!), and that was obvious in the way she constantly wanted to be near him and to be touching him. The older three were happy to run and spin and play ring a rosy – all gorgeous childhood memories. We also made sure to get some images of Amy with her mum, as they missed out on some together during Amy’s wedding. They’re very close as well, so it’s special to capture that bond. I had some photos with my own mum recently during our own family session, and it means a lot to have them. I hope that my kids choose to have photos with me one day too!

During an extended family session, sometimes there is a family who would prefer their images not to be shared, and that’s completely fine. I’ll always make sure that people are happy for images to be shared, and if they would prefer to keep them private, I’ll make sure not to include them. I had lots of fun shooting with Amy and her family, and I hope they enjoy looking back on their memories forever!

If you’d like to book in a session for yourself, or gift a voucher to someone you love, Contact me here. You can also view more examples of my work in my Family Portfolio.

 

The Pines Wanneroo Couples Session | Josh and Grace

Usually it’s the mum or female partner who contacts me to arrange a shoot, but after a little hinting from Grace, Josh was the one to organise a session! I know that often guys don’t look forward to photo shoots, so it’s extra impressive when someone not only agrees to go along to one, but also actively participates in arranging it! Josh and Grace arrived during the Golden Hour at The Pines in Wanneroo for their couples session amidst a ‘glitter explosion’ in the car – resulting in them being extra sparkly for their photos!

Meeting at good old Maccas 4 years ago, Grace and Josh now have two very young and very cheeky little boys who like to make a mess in the kitchen most mornings – budding chefs perhaps? On top of that Josh works FIFO and Grace studies a double degree at Uni, so their hands are very full. This makes it even more special that they took the time out to have a shoot together to celebrate their relationship – just the two of them, where it all began. I know it can be so hard to be in front of the camera, but these two did so well at having fun together and showing their connection. The end result is some gorgeous images to look back on forever and remember this time in their life. They’ll also be receiving a beautiful photo book to keep those memories safe and all together – there for them to have a trip down memory lane whenever they choose, and something for their boys to look back on and remember their parents as who they are now.

If you’d like to book a session for yourself, Contact me here. You can also view my Couples Portfolio and learn about Why I love photo books.

In-home Newborn Lifestyle Session | Baby O

Before Baby O’s Newborn Lifestyle session, I was warned about the yellow walls in their home, the fact that big sister R might be over-zealous in front of the camera, and the fact that Mum found being in front of the camera awkward and might pull weird expressions. Yet I found none of this when I turned up for the session (well, aside from the yellow walls but I actually loved them!). Despite having missed their morning coffee (I told them afterwards that they totally should have had one while I was there!), this family was full of fun and beautiful connection and no evidence of strange faces being pulled!! Baby O was perfect despite having been suffering from a bit of reflux, and little R was a natural in front of the camera – reading books, twirling in the hallway, dancing with her mum, showing me her crafty creations, jumping on the bed, and being affectionate with her baby sister. You couldn’t ask for anything more really!!

Mum contacted me as she wanted to capture some natural images of them now that they had their second baby girl and had recently moved into their new home. She said that they didn’t have many of the 3 of them before baby O was born, and now that she was here, Mum wanted to make sure they had some photos they were happy to look at – ones that showed who they really were.

There are so many images from this session that I absolutely love, and I’m extremely grateful to them for letting me share some. Some images they want to keep private, and that’s totally fine, I just really appreciate that they’ve let me share these ones with you. Although I obviously love being able to share images, your photos are YOUR story, and I would never want anyone to feel pressured to share them. So if you’re wanting a photo session but you’re worried it means that you have to share your photos, rest assured that I’ll never share any you’re not 100% comfortable with me sharing.

If you’d love to book a session with me, Contact me here. You can also view my Lifestyle Newborn Portfolio here and learn more about what Newborn Lifestyle sessions are here.

Things I learnt from having my own family photo session!

Every year my family holidays in Adelaide with my parents, which is where I grew up until High School. We always stay on the beach in Glenelg (which is the only time we go to the beach!), and this year I wanted to get a family photo shoot to celebrate our holiday together in a place that is very special to us all due to all the memories we’ve created there. I’m part of an amazing photography community called Click Love Grow, and through there I knew that I wanted my photographer to be Michelle Crush Photography as I wanted her to capture those candid moments and connections and I’ve seen that throughout her work. Even though I hate being in front of the camera (super awkward!), I also know how important it is to have those family memories. These are some of the things I learnt by having my own photo session:

Styling is Hard!

Especially when you’re trying to style for a family of 6, plus my parents. I knew I wanted to keep it light and that I wanted to include some pattern and texture, and that I wanted everyone to be comfortable. I was pretty sure of the outfit I was going to wear, so I based my colours around that. I ordered the clothes for the boys from Zara online – I wanted them to be similar but not ‘matchy’ – and in the end I decided to put Alby in the overalls to keep him looking a little different (and also because I love the texture of it and he looked ridiculously cute!). Alexi was originally going to wear a denim onesie, but then my mum chose a denim top with some gorgeous texture on it, and with Alby also wearing denim I thought it would be a bit of a ‘denim overload’ so found a feminine patterned onesie for her instead. My husband was the last on the list, but we found something in the wardrobe to tie in with everyone else. Basically I followed my own advice, and started with one outfit (mine) and then worked the colours for the others around that and added some texture and pattern. I also didn’t get the boys hair cut because I actually love their crazy locks – it’s a part of who they are and I didn’t want them to be all stiff and styled. I wanted them to be THEM! You can read my Styling Guide here and more Styling tips to help you plan your photo shoot here.

 

The stress is real!

Even though I wasn’t after the perfect ‘everyone smiling at the camera’ photo, I was still anxious about the kids moods before the photo shoot. I was worried about their sleep, and the fact that we’d be up well past their bedtime (sun sets in Adelaide around 830pm and the younger ones are normally in bed by 7pm!), and I was worried about them cooperating. These photos were important to me, as I know they are to anyone who takes the time to organise a photo session, and I wanted them to go ‘well’. Luckily I also had complete faith that my photographer would be able to capture something even if the kids were tired and not cooperating. Which leads me to my next point…

 

There is no ‘perfect time’ for photos

Don’t wait for the ‘perfect time’ for photos. There is no more perfect time than now. The kids don’t need to be a certain age, the weather doesn’t need to be a certain way, the time of day doesn’t matter (it’s one late night), everyone doesn’t have to behave a certain way, you don’t need to have the ‘perfect outfit’ or be the ‘perfect weight’. You just need to be YOU. NOW. YOUR FAMILY. There may be things that make it more stressful (young kids), things you’d prefer to be different (no gaps in their teeth), or other things that aren’t quite ‘perfect’. But when is that perfect time? There’ll always be a reason to stop you, a reason to make it harder or to put it at the bottom of the priority list. But who you are now is not who you’ll be tomorrow, and you should capture today. Look back on it in years to come and remember it – the good, the bad, the ugly. Life isn’t perfect, and neither are we – so don’t wait for that perfect time for photos. It certainly wasn’t the ‘perfect time’ for us in the sense that being out until past 9pm with an almost 2 year old is never going to be fun – yet that’s what our life is now, and I’ll remember that when I look back on the photos. And that’s real!!

 

A photo session should be done more than once

I’ve actually never had a family photo session (Shock, horror!) aside from capturing my birth with Alby, and then his newborn lifestyle session. But I’ve never had a photo session just for my family and this experience has taught me that me taking photos of my kids and occasionally handing the camera to someone to ‘grab a quick one of me too’ is just not enough. It’s taught me that I plan to do way more of these photo sessions – I want to capture my family all together at least once a year. I want to capture the connections and the changes, and us interacting whilst someone else observes. I want to see us through the lens and keep those memories precious for my kids, and for me.

 

It’s way better than a selfie

I can’t even explain to you how emotional I actually felt looking at these photos of ME with my kids, and even with my mum and husband. A photo beyond a selfie, or beyond passing the camera to someone. It felt like I was glimpsing into my life from the other side – I was seeing the cuddles from Louie and his little hands around my neck – I was seeing the way I bend down to talk to Alby and all those other little moments. These photos mean a lot to me, because as much as I love taking photos of the kids, it’s only part of their story when we’re not in them too. Seeing us in the photos too, seeing me in them, made their story feel more complete.

 

The investment is worth it

And yes, it’s an investment. I know how much time goes into a photo session before, during and after the session. It’s way more than just ‘clicking the camera a few times’. Yes, anyone can ‘take a photo’ but not everyone can create a beautiful image or capture a beautiful moment in an artistic way, and if you want someone to do that for you, then it’s an investment which is well worth it. Frame those photos afterwards, put them in a photo book. If it’s important enough, there’s always a way to make it happen and invest in some precious memories before everything changes again.

 

A huge thank you to Michelle Crush Photography for her amazing skills, patience (grumpy toddler/resistant 8 year old), and for delivering me some beautiful memories that I’ll cherish always. If you’d love to create some beautiful memories of your own family, I’m more than happy to help you out! Check out my Family Portfolio and Contact me here.

The Agostini Family

Corrina is the face behind my logo, and she’s also designed some lovely Gift Vouchers for me – I would have been lost without her help when starting my photography business! I wanted to provide her with some beautiful family photos as a thank you, although her husband Marco took a bit of encouraging to attend and be in the photos as well. This is very common – men often don’t like the idea of a photo session – but I think it’s so important to encourage them anyway. One day your kids will want to look back on photos with both their parents – those memories will mean so much! I’m so glad that Marco decided to join us. Alex wasn’t overly thrilled to be part of the shoot either – but we managed to sneak in some beautiful images with him anyway – and ALMOST caught him in a smile (simply by telling him NOT to smile!). Miss Gemma loved the camera as much as it loves her – I absolutely loved capturing the connection between her and her mum. They have since bought photo books of their images to give to their Grandparents as gifts, which I think is a lovely idea. Follow this link if you’d like to find out more about Why I love photo books.
If you’re interested in capturing a family session, Contact Me for further information. If you’d like to view more family sessions, look at my Family Portfolio.