Thursday, August 11, 2011

Chasing Balls, Bubbles, Balloons and Books

Danielle simply couldn't wait to have another shoot with her family. I first photographed them when they were only three - when sweet Zack was only 2 and a half. I then was lucky enough to capture baby James' first weeks and they were some of my favourite newborn images I had taken. Since then, Danielle has been keen to capture the two boys together, yet it seems to have been impossible. They are always on the move and not at all interested in "posing" for photos. This coupled with a dad, Chris, who is also not a fan of having his photo taken has left poor Danielle longing for some good shots, but she also was sure I would have my work cut out for me. She has been very interested to see how I fared with the little energy balls that her sons are and I just hope I can live up to her expectations. She has also taken one of my portrait photography workshops so she knows even more about what is needed so the pressure was definitely on that day.

The family decided Southlands and the beach opposite would be the ideal locations as they live very nearby and they spend a lot of time in both places and have some wonderful family memories that they would love to capture forever before the boys grow up too much more. They ride bikes on the road, explore the forest and swing in the trees. It is where the boys feel comfortable and both parents also feel relaxed and free - all ideal choices for a shoot location.

The two brothers have loads of fun together but Zach being 5 and James being 18 months means that they are always on the move. Danielle was right and I definitely had my work cut out for me chasing these two around.

Zach is a very chilled and relaxed child and questions everything around him. He was happy to sit and listen to his parents and to watch them being silly while I snapped away.

James is extremely active, is strong willed and knows exactly what he wants. This included not spending too much time with the annoying lady with the big black box in front of her face (that would be me), no matter how silly the words were coming was from behind it.

Luckily, Danielle was prepared for this and came armed with distractions. If it is not too windy, bubbles are always a big hit. I am a bit allergic to the plastic bottles they come in - I mean in terms of their aesthetic. I need to find a pretty antique bottle with a wand - wouldn't that be heaven. But the bubbles themselves are beautiful and children are always mesmerised.

Hello blue eyed boy! Wow.

James loves nothing more than chasing a ball - perfectly matched to the colour of his eyes.

Danielle also brought some party poppers - they were so cool but very tricky to shoot them actually popping out. But Zach's smiles were easy to capture and this made me happy.

The family also wanted to combine the beach with the greenery as to them, this is the real Bermuda and will be the view they miss most when they eventually have to leave this beautiful island. To ensure James remained occupied and entertained, Danielle brought an abundance of props. Balls, books, balloons, jelly babies, watermelon and their bed time cuddly toys. Sadly, the balloons had lost their floatiness due to the fact that the shoot was rescheduled from the previous night due to bad weather. But unfloaty balloons are a small price to pay for the evening we had in exchange - it was the most glorious evening.

This series below really needs to be framed all together horizontally, but there is not room on the blog to present them properly so you will just have to imagine the final product!

The watermelon ended up in the sea which was not ideal and Chris ate the last of the strawberries which upset James, but nonetheless, they managed to cheer him up again with a little love and cuddles.

And more balls - always going to sneak a smile from this little guy when we give him a ball - so sweet.

James happens to be scared of the sea, so when I requested they walk down to the water, Danielle was rather worried it would be a disaster. I said not to worry because his back would be to the camera - how callous must I have sounded - traumatise your youngest for the sake of a shot. But they were game and I think despite the cries, the image is lovely and I know in the future, he will love the ocean and be thankful for these images.

Danielle and Chris - you had nothing to worry about - your family is utterly beautiful and full of fun. I hope I did indeed capture as much of all of your spirits as you hoped - I had a great time thinking up new ways to entertain the littles and hopefully they actually had fun too. So glad you found James' fave bed time bunny when you went back to the beach in the dark later that night - now you will definitely never forget that day. Kisses to you all, xxxxx

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