When we were children we loved paging through our family photo albums. We'd haul them out of the bookcase and throw ourselves onto the floor to look through them. We giggled over photos of our parents looking 'young' and dressed in such 'funny-looking' clothes (70s flares anyone?) and we chatted excitedly about the memories the more recent photos evoked.
Those images of us as children lying tummies-down, ankles crossed, flipping through album pages on the living room floor are at the forefront of my mind when I'm about to do a family session. Because those are the kinds of memories I want to capture for you. Photographs that will evoke a sense of time and place and - more importantly - the love and connection your family has.
A golden hour session
This lovely family visits Richmond Park often. They picnic in the Isabella Plantation and wander down to Pen Ponds. They've watched the deer, hunted for stones and played many a game of hide and seek among the woods and trees. When they look back on their favourite photos, I hope little Anna will recall her delight in being thrown in the air by her dad, how fiercely she threw herself into the tightest of hugs with the two people she loves best in the world and the simple pleasure in twirling with her oh-so-elegant mum, almost-matching skirts flared in the setting sun.
I met the Hollways about 90minutes before the sun was due to set and the sky above Richmond Park certainly wasn't lacking in drama. There were heavy clouds above us, with the thinnest strip of blue banded along the horizon.
I knew those overcast skies would give me lovely, even light for some gorgeous portraits and that if we were patient (and the wind didn't pick up) when the sun dipped below those clouds towards the horizon, something magical would happen.
We weren't disappointed, after examining the nearby herd of deer, hunting for stones and playing a game of hide and seek in the trees nearby, the sun slowly started to appear beneath the clouds. And we were able to make the most of that beautiful buttery light streaming over us. For once, Golden Hour lived up to its name.
The light may have been enchanting but, for me, the true wonder in this kind of photography is capturing each family in their own unique way. That is where the real magic lies.