I hate having my photo taken!
I know that this is a concern of many people - you would be surprised how many people say they hate having their photo taken. To keep things relaxed and eliminate awkwardness I spend a lot of time not taking photos - yep! This is important for adults and kids alike. We also move around and change things up to keep things interesting. And I’ll give lots of guidance but will never ask you to say "cheese" - most of the time I don't want you looking at the camera - so we can capture more natural smiles and emotions.
It's important to say that if you often avoid being in photos, worrying what they you look like. But if we put it off till next year then suddenly - and you know how the years fly by - your children are all grown up and it's too late! Wouldn't you like some photos of their childhood which include you - even if, in some of them, you have a few pounds of baby weight? I know that your kids love you as you are right now.
Clients are often surprised how much they enjoy their photo shoot.
What happens after my shoot?
After your custom session, I carefully select and edit your best images and add creative touches to create that extra wow. It takes about 2 weeks for me to process all your images.
Then comes the exciting part - your Order Session. You see your images for the first time and I must warn you, sometimes there are tears - happy tears! We select your favourites, and go through my range of products and look at where in the house you might want to put framed prints.
After Mini Sessions, things work a bit differently because you have less images. So instead, about 2 weeks after your session, you will receive an online gallery for selecting your images.
There is no hard sell and you are under no obligation to purchase. That's not my style, but it also doesn't make business sense! I want you to refer me to your friends, and I want you to hopefully return for another shoot, so I need to ensure you are 100% happy.
When should I book a bump shoot?
Bump/maternity sessions should be scheduled for around 32-36 weeks, or a little earlier if you are having twins. However, at some times of year I am booked a few months in advance so I recommend calling me after your 20 week scan to book in. In the weeks leading up to your bump session we may adjust to a slightly earlier or later date if that suits you better. We are just striking a balance between waiting long enough so your bump is large, but not waiting so long that you are tired and uncomfortable, and baby is about to arrive!
What about tantrums and tears?
To capture genuine smiles and real emotion in your photography, we make your whole session a fun experience for the whole family. Preparation is key, so I'll find out beforehand about out your children and their likes and dislikes. It's then easy for me to build a rapport with them, I can talk to them about Paw Patrol, ponies, or whatever it is they love.
Parents please bring your funniest jokes, favourite songs, and lots of tickles for the little ones. It’s essential you give out positive vibes leading up to, and during the shoot, even if you’re anxious. Don’t tell them they need to behave. Instead, tell them it will be loads of fun because if they arrive upbeat, children are generallly keen and cooperative and love every minute of it.
But don't worry if it doesn't go to plan! I do this every day, and have loads of experience with children’s different moods. That's also where custom sessions work so well, because I take the lead from kids and there’s no time pressure, so we can take lots of breaks and distract them from their mood with a game, a running race or some snacks.
Do you do newborn photography?
My photography style is soulful, environmental, and authentic, as you can see from my family sessions. This style carries across to my newborn photography, to capture your new baby authentically with feeling.
So if you are wanting very stylised newborn photography with hats, headbands, bowls and baskets, I am unfortunately not the newborn photographer for you. However if you want a more natural, relaxed and authentic style of newborn photography I am excited to work with you.
For clients wanting work with me, I have two options on that theme. Firstly, simple natural newborn portraits of your baby, or secondly, a newborn lifestyle session using your home and with a mixture of parent and baby shots. Read more about newborn photography options I offer here.
When are you available?
Do you shoot at weekends?
I work weekdays (except thursday) and a 2 or 3 weekend days each month.
Custom sessions are also available on a few weekend days each month, but as I have young children weekends are limited and often booked up to 3 months ahead. So please book in advance to avoid disappointment - get in touch as early as you can!
The last Saturday of each month I schedule my mini sessions - except during winter.
Do I need to decide what I want before my shoot?
Many clients aren't sure what they want to do with their photos, even after they have seen the images. My Order Sessions are great to going through all the options and helping you decide.
You absolutely don't need to decide right now whether you want an album or some framed photos above the fireplace. However, if you have something in mind they please do let me know - I can tailor your shoot to your end goal.
Can I just buy all the digitals?
However I don't recommend buying ONLY the digitals. The problem is, as parents, I'm guessing you have pretty busy lives. I want you to be overjoyed by your whole experience with Dandelion Photography. But if you only purchase digitalsand your USB stick sits in a drawer for 2 years, I know that you won't feel joy. You'll only feel stress and guilt!
However, I understand that you want to have the images "forever". I'm completely with you on that one, so that's why I include your digitals in my product packages. But before you purchase ONLY digital images please consider if that's really the best option for you.
What is our child is ill on the day of the shoot?
If your child is ill on the day of your shoot, don't worry we can reschedule free-of-charge to the next available date. This applies to both custom sessions and mini sessions. Just call me as soon as possible to discuss.
The last thing we want to do is to force a poorly child to give us false smiles for the camera, and realistically we simply aren't going to get great results from children who are ill.
When we do reschedule due to illness it is usually so last-minute that your session can't be re-allocated to another family. Therefore if we have to reschedule a second time due to illness, there is a £40 reschedule fee for both custom sessions and mini sessions.
How many photos will I see?
For custom sessions, I aim to show you 50 images so you have a great mixture of different images and more than enough images to make a spectacular album should you want one.
For mini sessions, you will see around 15 images in your online gallery, from which you can choose your included digitals or other products - read more about mini sessions here.
When are the best stages to schedule a baby shoot?
The different stages of development present us with a rich variety of opportunities,a nd it's amazing the variety of images we can get of baby over the course of the first year.
Newborn - There is nothing more beautiful than your incredible new baby at the start of their life. For newborn portraits, sessions must be done in the first 10 days of life - find out more about newborn shoots here.
Smiles - If you miss the newborn stage, a lovely alternative is a photo shoot at around 3 months of age when baby starts smiling. This is a similar session to a newborn lifestyle session, usually done in your home and capturing you and baby as a family.
Sitting - When baby starts sitting up, at around 6-8 months old, is a magical time for portraits as baby will sit still and respond to mum and dad with wonderful giggles and smiles. It is important to try and time this stage carefully, so they are sitting but not yet crawling away!
Walking - When your child starts walking, around 12 to 18 months of age, suddenly your journey through the toddler years has begun! We can have a lot of fun photographing them exploring the world and toddling along on their own, or holding hands with mum and dad.
Should I wait for a nice sunny day in summer?
What if it rains?
Summer is both a challenge and a gift for your family shoot. We can get some fabulous light and the warmer temperatures mean lovely summer outfits and everyone summer smiles. There are some disadvantages, as the light is most flattering are very early morning and late night - not practical for most children - but we can still make it work at other times.
But don't assume you should wait for summer for your custom shoot - there are pros and cons with all seasons. The short days of winter, for example, mean that we can have ideal light at about 1pm but the colder temperatures mean extra planning is required for wardrobe choices.
I do not usually reschedule due to weather, unless there is constant rain - cameras and water don't mix! The weather on the day is not often an issue - we do not need sunshine, cloudy days are just as good for great photography.
Should I choose a custom session or mini session?
Mini Sessions are 25 minutes so although we can be led by your wishlist, we can't achieve as much variety and as many shots as a custom session which is 90 minutes long.
Mini Sessions are scheduled by me on one morning each month, and I will be photographing 4 families on that morning. Because of the appointment system, I can't be as flexible as I would be for a custom session. I do have years of experience working with kids and getting them motivated and excited so I rarely have any problems, but if your child is very reluctant or difficult to manage, I would recommend a Custom Session. With a Custom Session we customise the whole experience around your family because I only schedule one custom session each day.
Want to ask something else, or go ahead and book a session?
Just send me a message and I will get back to you very soon.