Tag Archives: family photography

Working with Children and Animals – Studio and Location

“Never work with children or animals” – W.C. Fields

I think Fields advice is probably spot on for actors, tv producers, directors, etc. But as a photographer, they are my favourite subjects to capture. The spontaneity and joy, especially when capturing them together has the makings for beautiful moments.

In the Studio

I am delighted to report that more and more families this year have been bringing their pets to the studio for their family sessions. When Kimberly booked a photo shoot for her partner Darren’s birthday she was keen to include their Cockapoo Lottie as well as their one-year-old son Nathan. Absolutely, I said, the whole family should be included.

JB Moments Photography, Family Photographer, Falkirk
Plans, what plans

My original plan was to give this lovely family lots of different images in their gallery. Dad with Nathan, Mum with Nathan, Nathan with Lottie, Nathan on his own, etc, etc. You get the picture.  Whilst it’s great to have a shoot plan. When working with children or animals you have to be prepared to adapt your plan, or even set fire to it!

Daddy’s Boy

There’s usually a point between around 10 months and 18 months when a happy, bubbly baby becomes a little bit clingy and a little unsettled in new situations for a few months until they find their equilibrium again. Nathan only wanted to be with his daddy and wasn’t happy on his own or with mummy. I’m not in the business of upsetting kids. So we rolled with it.

JB Moments Photography, Family Photographer, Falkirk

And when we added Mum in we kept Nathan on Dads lap.

JB Moments Photography, Family Photographer, Falkirk

Daddy’s Girl

Lottie clearly wanted in on the action and decided that she was happiest on Dad’s lap as well!

JB Moments Photography, Family Photographer, Falkirk

I love this picture though. It’s what family means to these guys and Nathan has got a gorgeous smile going on. I’ll take that as a success any day.

Better yet, mum and dad loved their pictures and that’s the ultimate result I am always aiming for.

On location

Then on Sunday the wonderful team at Blush Boutique in Kincardine asked if I’d help out at their charity fundraiser My Pet and Me. I offered my shooting and editing time for free and they charged people £10 for a 15-minute photo session with their pets. Between that and the other goodies, they had on offer over £350 was raised for Second Chance Kennels and The Edward Foundation. They also collected loads of great donations for the kennels as well.

Under Pressure

Normally for a pet shoot, I have a full hour to get the animal comfortable with the location, the flash and find out what makes them sit and look at me. Now add kids and a cat. I’ve never shot a cat in a location other than their own. GULP! What could possibly go wrong?

Crack for Dogs

Turns out nothing! Nothing went wrong and I had an absolute blast kissing and petting all the pets and high fiving the kids. Thanks to Sam at Dog! playing a huge part by giving all the dogs her amazing Liver Cake that they couldn’t get enough off. The treats I’d bought to tempt them didn’t have a patch on these homemade gourmet delights 🙂

Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography
Did someone say LIVER CAKE !!!
Pepper the Cat

And the cat? The cat was an absolute rockstar. Once Pepper came out of her basket and had a good look around she struck a pose like a total professional.

Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography
Those dogs are amateurs.
Dog Days

I saw old dogs and puppies, small dogs, big dogs and mahoosive dogs. There were rescue dogs and bred from Crufts winners dogs. There was even a tripod dog. All in all, I shot 24 dogs, 16 kids and 1 cat. One thing was the same with all of them though…they were all loved by their owners and they were all GORGEOUS. Here are just some of the highlights from a fantastic day.

Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography

Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography
I wanna talk to my agent about this.

Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography Pet Photographer, Falkirk, JB Moments Photography

Studio Session – Baby Alex

“People who say the sleep like a baby usually don’t have one.” – Leo J. Burke

Like all other baby photographers, I love a sleeping baby to shoot. They curl up well into those adorable snuggly poses and look impossibly cute in all manner of bonnets and costumes in bowls and other props.

I have lovingly created guides for parents bringing their new bundle of joy to a session to help them prepare as much as possible for a sleepy session. The parents diligently read these guides and follow them to the letter. Yet on the day of the shoot….

Wide Awake

BabBaby Photographer Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

Introducing 4-month new Alex. He was fast asleep when he arrived at the studio but as soon his car seat touched the studio floor. BAM! He was wide awake.

After his feed, which he demolished in record time, I swaddled him nice and cosy. “they usually drop off once fed and swaddled”, I confidently said. Alex just opened his beautiful eyes even further.

The most important thing to note is that as long as the baby is comfortable I will get gorgeous pictures wide awake or fast asleep. It is nothing to get stressed out about.

Counting Sheep

Baby Photographer Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

I even decided to have some fun as he was so alert. Ever since I had got them at the Photography Show I had been dying to use my new sheep props. I love the look he is giving me here!

Chilled out little dude

Alex was super chilled out on my sheepskin cover. He was very content just to lay there and watch what I was up to and to make sure mum and gran were close by in case he needed a little snack.

Baby Photographer Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

He was most disgruntled when I had the nerve to move him from his favourite spot. It was at this point that mum caught me sneaking a kiss to the top of his head and I wasn’t even embarrassed. I mean look at him? You would totally do the same in my position!

Gran’s magic cuddles

After a long cuddle with Gran, the unthinkable happened Alex fell briefly asleep. Not a proper deep slumber but enough for me to pop him a prop to give mum another look for her gallery.

Baby Photographer Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

I literally have the best job in the world 🙂

Studio Session – Large Family Shoot

Super Size Me

Last Saturday my studio had its biggest challenge to date and the Buchanan Family were more than up for the challenge! 6 Adults, 1 teenager, 3 kids and 1 dog (a pointer-lab cross so not exactly small) descended and apart from a rabbit comment faux pas on my part it went really well 🙂

Leaders of the pack
Family photographer near Stirling

These two lovebirds headed up the family as parents to their two sons and grandparents to their four grandsons. They were super cute together. You could also tell they were close to their sons and their families the way they all interacted together.

Firstborn

Family photographer near Stirling

Their eldest son and his family complete with the newest addition, 3-month-old Lomond the dog!

The teenager, who I referred to as ‘the Teenager’ for the whole session was very patient with his younger brother and cousins. He probably would have rather been anywhere but in my studio but he didn’t show it. He also had the most gorgeous dimples every time he smiled. I didn’t point this out on the day for fear of embarrassing him!

His younger brother had the most amazing eyelashes. I was so jealous, they looked like extensions!

Family photographer near Stirling

For a 3-month-old, Lomond was very well behaved. Definitely put Bert and Ernie my two-year-old Frenchies to shame!

The baby

Family photographer near Stirling

The youngest son and his partner also had two cute sons. I loved their cheeky smiles and banter 🙂

Ready-made friends

Family photographer near Stirling

A cousin is a ready-made friend for life. These dudes are pretty lucky in that respect. And look, there are those dimples again!

But did they all fit?

I know that’s what you really want to know and the answer is…..YES!

Family photographer near Stirling

I reckon we could have got another couple of adults and kids in as well!

All in all, it was a blast, family sessions like this give me life.

Grow with Me

On Sunday I had baby Hugo back in the studio for the third session in his Grow with Me package. I love seeing how much these littles change in their first year and I think it is a great way for parents to document and remember those changes.

baby photographer near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

His next session will be his first birthday session with a smash of some sort and then his parents will have the hard job of picking which images from each of the four sessions they will put in the A4 Photobook that comes with this package.

This is what I got back from Hugo’s mum when I sent his latest gallery over,

“Awesome pics yet again Jenny!”

That just makes my heart do happy flips!

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Studio Session – Baby Charlie

Cool Uncle Alert

Baby Charlie has a cool uncle. Fact! How do I know this? Well because he purchased a gift voucher for Charlie’ parents at Christmas for a Newborn photo shoot at my home studio 🙂

Low Expectations

Typically to get those swaddled, squishy baby pictures that a lot of parents want the baby needs to be about two weeks or under. I like to describe it as before they start to unfurl! Charlie was 10 weeks new when he came into the studio. During the pre-shoot consultation, his parents said they didn’t want wrapped or prop styled pictures. In fact, Charlie’s mum said, “we’ll be happy if we get one nice family one and one of Charlie’s smile”.

Challenge accepted!

When two become a familyBaby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Not only did I get more than one lovely family shoot, as well as pictures of mum and dad individually with Charlie. I also managed to get some of this cheeky chaps cool expressions. What a little dude!

Smile!

Capturing this baby boy smiling wasn’t an issue because after he’d had some milk and a nappy change he was all smiles.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Nailed it!
A proper Charlie

Being 10 weeks old baby Charlie had a whole range of facial expressions that he was happy to share with us. I just loved this one 🙂

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

As usual, the two-hour session went by in a flash and after some snuggles, with his photographer, baby Charlie left the studio.

In other news…I’m an Auntie again 🙂

On the 22nd of January, my newest little nephew was born. At 8:55 pm, weighing in at a whopping 9lb 6oz baby Teddy entered the world.

Due to work commitments, it took two weeks before I could get to see him. TWO WHOLE WEEKS people! Finally, I packed as much of my studio as I could fit in my car and made the 320-mile trek down South to get my snuggle on!

He is my brother’s third son and he wanted a picture of all the boys together. Okay, I thought what are my options here? I swaddled Teddy nice and snug, but who to hold him? As my eldest nephew (12) is on the autism spectrum I thought it might be easier if they all lay on the floor and for my middle nephew (2) to have Teddy resting on him. But no, my usually easy going middle nephew was obviously still reeling from no longer being the baby of the family and definitely DID NOT want to hold the new baby!

You definitely have to be aware of all the family dynamics when posing siblings. My eldest nephew surprised us all by being willing to hold the baby but I knew I had one take and that was it.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Lucky for me I got an image my brother and sister in law were happy with. Phew! Straight after that take middle nephew jumped up and was out of there!

Teddy by name

As soon as my brother told me my new nephew’s name I knew I had to use my teddy bear bonnet on him.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

I know I’m biased, but have you ever seen a cuter Teddy? I don’t think so.

The eagle-eyed amongst you may notice a new logo on this image. The Digitally Altered logo is a safety initiative created for Photographers (specifically Newborn Photographers) to easily mark and identify images that have been digitally enhanced, altered, combined or stitched together in post-production to create imagery that would otherwise be unsafe to reproduce straight out of camera. If someone clicks on it they will get the following info.

“If you have been directed to this page by another photographer or you have seen this logo displayed on another artist work, it means that the image you have seen has been created by combining 2 or more images together digitally to ensure baby’s safety.  The Photographer wants you to know that this image was created safely and that no baby was put into a dangerous position during the creation process. They also want to ensure that for those wanting to recreate a similar image or style, to not do so without further investigation into how to do it safely. “

I think this is a great initiative and I will be using it going forward on any image I manipulate to allow newcomers to the industry, parents and creators alike to understand that the image/s they are viewing requires further investigation into its creation process before trying to replicate it on a real baby.

Just hanging around

Back to the gorgeous Teddy.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Cute, huh?

 

Studio Session – The Competition Winners!

In December I ran a competition across my Instagram and Facebook pages to win a free photo shoot in my newly expanded studio. All people had to do was like or follow me and say what kind of shoot they wanted.

It’s fair to say I got a lot of entries across both platforms and the shoots people wanted ranged from newborn to family, headshots to pets. I took out all the family members that entered (sorry mum 😉 ) and assigned each entry a number based on when they submitted. Then using a random number generator I found on the internet I picked the entry that corresponded with that number.

It was Jennifer and she wanted some nice photos of her son who was two and his new 4-month-old sister. As well as some pictures of them all as a family. She was delighted when I told her she’d won the prize worth £120 🙂

She ain’t heavy she’s my sister

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Not only was this two-year-old turning into a very handsome chap indeed. He was also very well behaved – he only needed one bribe for doughnuts. (to be fair I would do anything for doughnuts as well, just saying). Despite making sure mum and dad were close by, just out of camera, he was very careful with his baby sister.

As for the baby sister…Look at that hair, those eyes, that dimple!! As you can tell I was totally smitten. She was such a good-natured little girl as well. No tears or tantrums here!

I’ll look out for you

This big brother loves his little sister. I think as she gets older she is going to have him wrapped around her cute little fingers.

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
The best gift our parents gave us was each other.
Sometimes you gotta race cars

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

With up to an hour in the studio, you get to mess around with different backdrops and props. It’s important to get shots of each child individually as well and find ways to let their personality shine through. My little red racing car was just the thing for this young man ( I think dad was secretly a little jealous).

Time for my close up

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Meanwhile, this little cutie was perfectly content to sit in the chair and pout and pose for us.

All too soon the session was over and it was time for me to pack the toys away and start acting like an adult again (booo).

The family went off for doughnuts (not at all jealous!) and I couldn’t wait to get started on editing and delivering back their digital gallery.

The sprinkles on the doughnut

Sorry, but that’s all I can think about now…..

The best bit was getting such a lovely review back from my winners.

Fab photos done with our little ones! Jenny was great and made us all feel comfortable so she got the best pics possible of the kids! Will definitely be back for more photos in the future!

Christmas Mini Sessions 2018

Christmas comes early to the JB Moments Photography Studio. The middle of November to be precise. This is to ensure that any families wanting to make Christmas Cards from their session can do so in plenty of time to get them printed.

Sleighed it

The antique sleigh from last year made a comeback but this year in the editing I worked out how to add moving snow. I know, right!

Couch Potato

This year I took advantage of the bigger studio and added a ‘cuddle on the couch’ set up. Complete with Christmas throws and ‘The Night before Christmas’ book.

Is your little featured?

I had so much fun I’ve created a video of some of the sessions. Take a look and see if your little one is featured.

 

Kincardine Toddler Group – Photo Shoot

I love taking pictures of kids. My husband says it’s because I’m on their level…I’m going to take that as a compliment because I thoroughly enjoy acting silly, having a jolly good time and getting paid for it!

Always wanted to try my hand at School Photo Shoots. So when Kincardine Toddler Group got in touch for their annual photo shoot I was very keen to make that my first foray into this type of photography.

You see in my studio I get at least half an hour at a mini session or an hour or so at a full session to establish a rapport with the child. That is plenty of time to get their trust and for them to relax so we get some good pictures. My schedule at the toddler group was 34  sets of toddlers and their siblings in 10-minute slots. Could I get them to relax in front of the camera in such a short amount of time? Would I still give the kids at the end of the day the same level of energy as those at the beginning? When would I get a toilet break?…

Thank goodness for a big boot

The Mini Clubman (aka the works van) was full to bursting.  Backdrop paper, studio lights, reflectors, stands and camera gear were all in there. But that wasn’t what raised strange looks from the caretaker when I pitched up at the community centre the toddler group is run from. It was when I pulled out my extendable feather duster, foam sports hand, rubber chicken and giggle bag!!! All very important arsenal for encouraging smiles and laughter from toddlers.

The results

Some of the parents have very kindly given me permission to share some of the pictures of their little ones.

Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Too cute!
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Be still my heart
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Such a fashion-forward bunch!
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Brotherly love
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Can’t wait to see Fern in the studio next year for her first birthday cake smash!
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
That smile!

Even when my backdrop was more interesting than the camera it made for a cute picture.

Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Wreck it Rorie!
Toddler Photography - JB Moments Photography
Butter wouldn’t melt!!

Judging by the number of orders, social media shares and smiles on the kid’s faces I’d say it went well. I learnt loads and before I do another one I need to update the postage and delivery admin side of things. All handy stuff that is easy to fix.

As for me, I loved every second and the toddlers fed my energy and made sure I gave the last kids (four brothers) as much fun as the first one. One mum, in particular, an angel by the name of Naike, made me a cup of tea that I will be eternally grateful for. And you’ll be pleased to know I managed two toilet breaks 😉

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Studio Session – The Murray Family

“Marriage is a relationship in which one is always right and the other is the husband!”

Margaret and Don Murray have been married for forty years. To celebrate they wanted a family photo shoot with their nearest and dearest. Their two sons, one partner, two grandkids and the most important members of their family. Bailey and Tia their Labradoodles.

Bert and Ernie Approved

Those of you that know me know I am besotted by my two Frenchies, Bert and Ernie. I also happen to think they are an excellent judge of character. We first met Don out walking Bailey and Tia and the dogs all loved each other. Not only that, Bert and Ernie took a shine to Don as well. Definite seal of approval in my eyes! And of course, they were right as the rest of the family turned out to be lovely as well.

What’s the Secret?

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

I can’t have a couple that has been married for 40 years in the studio and not ask them what the secret to wedded bliss is? The answer from Don was “do what you’re told!”. I have advised Mr JB of this handy tip immediately 🙂

It’s a Family Affair

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

The family had great banter and you could tell they were all very close-knit. The session was great fun and Margaret told me at the end she had been dreading the session but actually enjoyed it. That’s music to my ears and the reason I do this job.

My newly expanded studio coped admirably with 5 adults, 2 kids and 2 dogs.

Favourites

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Beautiful Lois and child modelling superstar Blair are clearly much-loved grandkids and I could see why. Brilliantly behaved with the perfect amount of cheek, these two needed the least amount of direction from me.

But…

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Everyone was in agreement that Margaret and Don’s absolute favey faves are their fur babies Bailey and Tia. The best bit – because they are so darn cute nobody seemed to mind.

Bailey
Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Woof!

Bailey arrived on the scene first and was named after a well-known drink because of his creamy colour. He was the couples first Labradoodle and they were soon totally smitten. So much so that they felt he needed a wee sister.

Tia
Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Did someone say Sausages?

Sticking with the alcohol theme along came Tia. I had the pleasure of meeting her as a pup during our walks and she is a total cutie.

So there you have it. Families take many forms and all of them should be celebrated. This was such a fun shoot to do. Reason number 634 why I love my job 🙂

 

Studio Sessions – Three generations and Hugo

“I am a strong women because a strong woman raised me.”

Ever since Samantha gave birth to gorgeous Thea 15 months ago her own Mum has been desperate to get a photo of the three of them. Unable to get a good one by themselves they booked me to capture their three generations of women for them.

Family Photographer near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

I am always really honoured when I get to capture these types of moments as it will be amazing for Thea to look back when she is older at her heritage.

Baby Blues

Thea certainly kept us all on our toes but was easily bribed with Cheerios :-). She had the most amazing blue eyes that mum had emphasised with her pretty blue and white floral dress.

Child Photographer near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Who run the world (girls)

Any excuse to quote Beyonce (am I right?)

Family Photographer near Stirling - JB Moments Photography

But with this amazing Mum and doting Gran I think Thea will go on to do anything she wants in life – maybe even run the world.

Baby Hugo

Who can forget gorgeous baby Hugo and those immensely kissable cheeks? Well he was in for the second of his Grow with Me sessions now he is 4 months old (I know, where has that 4 months gone?!).

You think they can’t have grown that much in 4 months! As I used my vintage suitcase prop at his newborn session I thought I would use it again at this stage to chart how much he had actually grown…..WOW!

Baby Photographer near Falkirk - JB Moments Photography

There wasn’t even any room for Ted this time!

I’m going to use the suitcase at all his sessions as I think it will make a cool montage at the end for his mum and dad. But I don’t think he will be in it for any more sessions!

His next session will be around the 8-month-old stage when he can sit up by himself. Then we round off at around one year old when he can stand by himself (or with a little help). I absolutely love it when parents book a Grow with Me package as it means I get to see these little people grow and develop. It was amazing the range of expressions Hugo has now and how much he recognised his mum’s voice. He still let me snuggle him as well so that was an added bonus 🙂

Coming Soon

The next few weeks in the studio are busy busy busy! I have a pet shoot this weekend and more pets in the coming week for family shoots. Then it will be Christmas Mini session madness! This week I am getting to try something new photographing handmade jewellery for a local college. Watch this space…

Arnprior Farm – Pumpkin Mini Sessions

The best part about memories is making them

Down on the Farm

I make no secret of the fact that I love Halloween and all that comes with it, especially pumpkins! I always watched with envy as American friends on social media shared their grand days out at pumpkin patches picking their own pumpkins. I thought in the UK the only picking I got to do was between which supermarket I could get them from.

Oh My  Gourd

Imagine my excitement then when last year I discovered Arnprior Pumpkins. A pumpkin farm in Stirling!!! I wanted to go there immediately and use it as a fantastic photoshoot location. Unfortunately I was too late last year and so I impatiently counted down the days until they were taking bookings this year and bugged the heck out of the owner (Sorry Rebecca!). Until I got a slot during half term week last Friday.

The day started cold but with the most amazing sunrise as I drove over to the farm. Rebecca, Duncan and the family run an amazing experience. As well as many varieties of pumpkins to pick you can also pick potatoes and turnips (if you’re old skool). There is also chainsaw carving, face painting, gourmet food and drink trucks, a kale maze, pop up crafts and quad pods which need to be seen to be believed (check out the video on their page).

And mud – SO MUCH MUD. But even if you don’t come prepared the farm have thought of that and hire out a huge range of wellies. It’s the sort of good, wholesome, clean air, mucky fun that the whole family can enjoy. And for those that wanted some of those moments captured on Friday I was there to do just that 🙂

Please enjoy some of the moments captured in this short video.

Pumpkins sprouting up everywhere

I also had the cutest little pumpkin in the studio last week.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Boo!

Meet 4 and half month old Amber who came in rocking her first Halloween outfit like a total  Boss.

Baby Photos near Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Does my bum look big in this?

Look at that hair! And those eyes. What a cutie pumkin pie.

I’m off to carve my pumpkins and make soup and muffins with the innards. I’m already counting the days down until I can get back on the farm again.