Tag Archives: portrait 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 – 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!

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!

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 Session – The Robertson Family

“Love grows more tremendously full, swift, poignant, as the years multiply.” – Zane Grey

The Robertsons were gifted one of my gift vouchers for their Ruby Wedding Anniversary. A family photo shoot with their two grown-up sons, their partners and their super cute two-year-old grandson Lewis.

What’s the secret?

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Married almost twenty years myself I was keen to get the inside scoop from these two lovebirds how to double that number! Without any hesitation, they both said, perfectly in sync, “Patience”. I’m gonna need to work on that then!

Their Boys

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

Before my studio expansion, I wouldn’t have been able to take a mum, dad and two grown up sons image like this. The room was just too small. Now I am able to move around my clients to get the best angle in comfort. As a bonus the rest of the clients not in the image can relax in comfort at the other side of the room.

But wait, there’s more!

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

If I couldn’t do the last shot I certainly couldn’t fit six adults comfortably in. We had space for more as well. Could’ve had a full on party! Although to be fair this crew were so much fun we were having our own party!

I love seeing the bond between family members and watching how they interact with each other in the studio. This family unit was TIGHT 🙂 There were lots of in-jokes, genuine affection and laughter.

The star of the show

Without a doubt, the star of the session was Master Lewis.

Family photographer in Stirling - JB Moments Photography

At two years-old he was killing it in the fashion stakes with his checked shirt and cool jeans (I checked I can’t get those monkey knee patches on adult jeans – actually gutted). He was so good during the hour long shoot as well. He only needed the occasional bribe with some white chocolate buttons to keep going. Especially as he was in nearly all the pictures.

The happy couple has already come back and told me that they “Love, love, love” their photos and I am delighted that the family have some cracking memories to look back on. I’m off to work on that patience thing – wish me luck!

Baby picture - JB Moments Photography

Studio Session – Baby Pippa

“And though she be but little, she is fierce.” – Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

It’s a Girl!

Don’t get me wrong I love all the squishy newborn babies that I get to snuggle in my studio but after a run of baby boys, it was lovely to meet 11 days new Pippa. At 6 pounds 8 ounces she was a small but perfectly formed bundle of gorgeousness. Time to break out the headbands!

Baby picture - JB Moments Photography

Sister Act

When chatting with mum as she booked the session she mentioned that she wanted some sibling shots with Pippa’s big sister Hollie who was two. Not a problem. Although two-year-olds are the most unpredictable in my experience so I had baby’s neck fully supported underneath the swaddling and mum close by before I even attempted the shot.

Baby picture - JB Moments Photography

In this instance, I needn’t have worried as big sister was amazing with her baby sister. But always better to be safe than sorry!

After posing like a champ Hollie went off with Daddy for a babycino like the big grown up little lady she is.

If the hat fits…

I have lots of wraps, outfits and hats for my clients to choose from but I always love it when they bring in something special to them. In this case, it was a knitted hat that had been Hollie’s when she was born.

Baby picture - JB Moments Photography
Bear with me little one!

Is that not unBEARably cute?! (sorry not sorry) 🙂

Bucket List

If I get a new prop I’ve gotta use it and mum was up for it too. Pippa was soooo cosy and comfy all swaddled up she was very content.

Baby picture - JB Moments Photography

All to soon my time with Pippa was up. One more snuggle and kiss of those gorgeous cheeks. Then I had to give her back to her family and get ready for the next little bundle of joy.

Guest Blog – Lorna Shaw on Professional Headshots

Corporate Headshots in Edinburgh - JB Moments Photography

Upon finding myself willingly adding what can only really be described as a bad photo of a senior leader into the header of an email they were going to be sending out, I started questioning my own complicity in allowing this photo suicide to take place alongside an otherwise carefully crafted message.

You see, as a comms manager, part of my role is to ensure that our leaders are presented in the best way. That’s not just in written form but in visual representation too, you know, putting faces to names and making messages more personal in the process.
It was at this juncture that the penny dropped; our management team needed saved from their own photo demise! We needed a photoshoot to get professional headshots done. We needed some sort of credible visual representation of our leaders and these badly cropped photos (was that someone’s ex hanging off their arm?) were not cutting it. We needed JB, is what I concluded.
I’d been on the receiving end of JB’s camera lens before (it’s a very kind and flattering lens, I must add) and knew that she would pitch up, put them all at ease and crack on with taking really good pictures of them all, without so much as a feigned smile or forced grin amongst them.
A natural people person, JB instantly put everyone at ease. Clickity click, click click click and voila! the job was done. The very next day we had all the proofs sent through to view online and choose which ones to get produced in the final hi-res finish. As it happens, the team were struggling to pick which ones they wanted to use – because they were all so good – so JB kindly produced the whole lot in final versions and sent them through.
Upon using one of the new headshot photos in a business email message the following week, the email in question solicited a few comments. None of which were anything to do with the content, but all about this manager’s new headshot photo!
‘Is she a model?’ ‘Wow! What a cracking photo!’ ‘Who’s the photographer? I need one of these!’ were some of the responses it got.
A simple but very effective professional headshot photo can absolutely make or break a communication. So my advice is really straight forward; if you want to be visually represented in the best possible light, literally, then go to JB and let the pro create your show!
These views are all Lorna's own and are in not those of the company she works for. She has also not taken any money or bribes from me!

Back to School Mini Sessions

Child photography in Stirling - JB Moments Photography Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself.” Chinese Proverb

Do you remember being a kid and finishing school for the summer holidays? When six weeks off school felt like FOREVER? The promise of a seemingly endless summer stretching ahead of you. The opportunities felt unbounded…

Then by the end of week four, you’d been swimming so many times you had webbed feet,  your bike had a puncture and your mum was mainlining gin whilst simultaneously comfort rocking in the corner?

Just when you thought you couldn’t get any more bored something magical happened. Back 2 School advertising appeared in shop windows along with pen sets so shiny you couldn’t help but stroke them, pencil cases in every flavour so you could pledge your allegiance to your favourite pop star, tv programme or football team, frantic conversations with your best friends about the merits of a rucksack vs. a satchel, and don’t even get me started about which new school shoes were going to make you look the coolest (I ran away from home once over school shoes – true story!).

Suddenly the place you couldn’t wait to leave felt like something to look forward to. Catching up with all your pals you hadn’t seen over the summer, new kids that had moved to the area and a new teacher to torment learn from. 🙂

That’s what I wanted to capture with my Back 2 School mini sessions. (Want to know more about mini sessions, click here).

Earlier in the year, I’d managed to procure an old school desk but I wanted to add something else. For parents, the first day of school is an important milestone each year and I wanted to capture some of their kid’s likes and aspirations that they could look back on. I came up with a chalkboard idea.

Child photography in Stirling - JB Moments Photography For data security purposes I’m not going to show the kids answers here but needless to say, they were varied and jobs, when they grow up, ranging from Doctors to Fairies! A great keepsake for mum and dad to look back on. As for the kids they had great fun sitting on top of it.

Cute kids in uniforms

I can share a few of the other pics from the sessions though.

Child photography in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Why was 6 afraid of 7?
Because 7 8 9.
Child photography in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
What did one calculator say to the other calculator?
You can always count on me.
Child photography in Stirling - JB Moments Photography
Why is 1+1=3 like your left foot?
It’s not right.

Bad jokes aside if you’d like to be first in the queue when mini sessions are launched sign up for my no spam ever newsletter here.

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography

Studio Session – The Sherrington Family

“It’s not what we have in life, but who we have in our life that matters.” – J.M. Laurence

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography

What do you get when you have two cute kids (8 and 10), a yummy mummy, a reluctant dad and a very naughty granny in the studio for a photo shoot? You get a whole load of FUN. I loved this family from the moment they came in and even Dad got into the swing of things as we got going.

Men at Work

I have learned from experience that most males (especially the grown-up ones) are more relaxed in front of the camera if they have been given something to do.

In this case, I asked Dad to whisper something into his son’s ear that only he could hear. I am guessing at what he said but it did the trick!

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography
If a woman says she’s fine. Run!
Smile

I could’ve photographed the 10-year-old daughter all day long. She had one of those smiles that lit up her whole face and eyes that looked like pools of melted dairy milk **swoon**.

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography

Silly Faces

Another favourite trick of mine, with kids at least, is to ask them to pull silly faces. This time though the biggest kid of all joined in…Granny! She was such a good sport and you could tell the kids really loved spending time with her. Reminded me a bit of my dearly departed gran who was always up for a bit of mischief. I wish I had photos like these to look back on of her.

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography
If the wind changes you’ll stay like that!
In a corner

This is the last big family shoot I’ll be doing in my studio before it’s extension next month and I was a little worried before we started that a corner and a bench wouldn’t create many variations. Well! I’ve got to stop listening to that inner self-doubt because we managed endless combinations and I delivered the family a gallery of nearly double the quoted number of pictures.

Best of all they had a great time with mum saying it was a “brilliant experience”.

Family photographer in Larbert - JB Moments Photography
I smile because you’re my family – I laugh because there is nothing you can do about it!

Age is just a number – Mums and Daughters Photoshoot

“Life really does begin at forty. Up until then, you are just doing research” – Carl G. Jung

It had been a busy week with Corporate Headshots and High School Prom photos but on Saturday morning I sprung out of bed excited about the photoshoot I had at lunchtime.

Sara had enquired about a birthday present idea she’d had for her friend who was having a milestone birthday. Was I up for taking pictures of the two friends and their daughters? Hell yes, I was!

I’ve found my tribe

Those of you that are regulars to my blog know how important printed memories are to me  (and if you’re not you can read about it here!).

I arrive at Sara’s house and it is beautiful. In an area of Stirling, I had fantasised about living in when I was a student at the University there. The inside was tastefully decorated but what struck me instantly about the decor was the number of pictures. On the walls, the mantelpiece, the sideboard, etc. Weddings, family members, babies, you name it, all the memories were there, displayed proudly to be enjoyed. THESE ARE MY PEOPLE!!!

Hot Mama

I digress (sorry I get a bit excited). The birthday girl Tania looked stunning!JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling

Little Stars

JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling

Isla (8), Maia (7) and Freya (6) couldn’t wait to get in front of the camera and to see what props I’d brought with me! All three were totally up for whatever poses I had in mind and the fact that they were all so gorgeous and well-behaved was just a total bonus!

I love seeing little girls this confident and happy in their skins.  Long may it continue!

Flossy the Flamingo
JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling
Cheers to looking fabulous

Now it isn’t a party until there are bubbles and cake and Sara did her friend proud with prosecco and themed cupcakes! The bubbles came served in a flamingo called Flossy that had to make it into the photoshoot (to be fair they were very lucky it didn’t make it into my camera case).

Mum and Me

Both Sara and Tania admitted during the photoshoot that there are very few pictures of them with their daughters. Why? Because they are usually the ones holding the camera, documenting the family moments. This is a real shame as when their daughters are older they are going to want to see pictures with their mums – especially when their mums look as smokin’ as Tania and Sara do. Hopefully, we rectified that a bit on this shoot.

JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling

JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling

Never work with Children or Animals

Rubbish is what I say to that! Bramble, one of the families gorgeous dogs wandered in so we simply had to get her in some shots.

JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in StirlingDo I get extra treats for this?

Life is better with friends

JB Moments Photography, Family photographer in Stirling

It was a great, fun session to shoot and I hope that Sara, Tania and the girls enjoyed it as much as I did. As I drove home I reflected on friendship and how lucky Tania was to have a friend like Sara who gave such excellent birthday gifts 🙂