Hello and thank you so much for booking your Summer lavender mini photography session with me, I am really looking forward to meeting you and capturing some special memories of you and your family. I have included some information below to help you prepare for your session and hopefully answer any questions you might have.
It seems like a lot to take in but what I really want you to know is that at my sessions all you need to do is just enjoy being with your children, and lets face it, as far as our little people are concerned, that is one of the things that we are the very best at!
How do we get there?
Details on all travel options to the farm can be found here: https://www.mayfieldlavender.com/mayfield-lavender-farm/
The satnav post code is: SM7 3JA
There is a small entry charge of £2 for adults (children under 16 are free), I understand that you DON'T pay this if you are meeting a photographer. Please let them know at the gate.
The best place to meet is by the small silver coffee van which is parked to the left of the big white cafe tents towards the end of the fields there. It is under the shade of a very big tree, so should be fairly easy to spot. It is not as busy as the cafe and so you should be able to spot me easily enough. I'll be waiting at one of the picnic tables, or standing right next to the van.
The fields get very busy on the weekend, they are very popular with tourists. I have tried to time my sessions for the least busy times, but it still may take a good 10 or 15 minutes to enter the farm and park your car, so please do take this into account when travelling to the session. If you have any problems, feel free to call me on 07881853621.
It is absolutely essential that you are on time so I can make sure your photoshoot runs smoothly and I have plenty of time to capture some wonderful images for you. If you find yourself running late for any reason, please do let me know immediately.
BEES: Please note that there are a lot of bees among the lavender. I have been going there for three years now and have never been stung, but there is a first time for everything! If you have a bee allergy, this is not the place for you. Please do let me know immediately if you have any concerns regarding this.
What can I expect from our session?
It's helpful if you tell your children that you are meeting a friend to take photographs of you all so they know what to expect, it is best not to surprise them.
I will have scouted out the location before we meet to find the best places to take your photographs.
I may direct you to stand or sit in certain places, according to where the light is best, but if you have booked me, then you are obviously not after stiff or overly posed photos. I take a more documentary/lifestyle approach (as you can see from my portfolio). I really want to capture those natural connections between you that make your family unique to who you are. So instead of having everyone posing for the camera for the whole session, I encourage you to play or engage in an activity together to get those natural smiles and big, belly laughs. I aim to get photos of the whole family together, as well as individual portraits so you have variety in your final gallery.
I'm worried my children will not want to smile for the camera or misbehave
Please rest assured that I don't want your children to be anything other than themselves. I don't need them to sit still or 'be good', I have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old who point-blank refuse to pose for me, I've become an expert in taking photos on the run and I have a lot of tricks to make sure that I get those lovely, connected family photos that you are after. Please do not bribe your children to behave for me, I find this never works (especially if sweets are involved). Of course you know your children best and if you want to give them something as a treat at the end of the session, that is entirely up to you.
I find it helps (especially with toddlers and babies) if they have had a nap prior to our session and are well rested. It's always a good idea to have snacks and a drink on hand.
What should we wear?
This is the first question most people ask after booking their session. What you wear is important because it can really enhance your final gallery. I want you to feel comfortable in what you are wearing because that will ultimately show through in your photos.
The first thing I suggest you do is have a look in your wardrobe and think about your own personal style. We all naturally gravitate towards certain colours and textures. Pick your outfit and then co-ordinate the rest of the family around what you are wearing.
The first thing to consider is colour. It sounds like a small thing, but your photos really will look THAT much more amazing if you think about colours that will go with the gorgeous lavender background I will be photographing you against. Bright yellow and red or a deep navy will stand out beautifully against the blooms. Pastel pinks, yellows, purple and blues are also a great idea.
If the thought of picking a colour palette induces panic, neutral colours such as grey, white, beige and navy are timeless and can be mixed and matched on their own or with one main, bold colour to great effect.
Textures such as linen, cotton, denim, corduroy, silk and lace always photograph wonderfully. Once you have picked your outfit, have a look at the rest of the family and co-ordinate with complimentary colours and textures.
The main thing to remember is to choose something you feel comfortable and great in!
Avoid the matchy-matchy look (everyone is black t-shirts and denim will seriously date your photos). Also try to avoid large brand names or logos on clothing as they can be distracting. These images will be in your family for generations to come - so it's definitely worth putting some thought into what you might like to wear.
What happens if it rains?
We all know just how unpredictable the great British weather can be. If rain looks inevitable then we will rearrange the session.
When will I get my photos?
I promise to get your full gallery to you within 10 days of your session. I normally do an initial edit and I like to post some of my favourites on my social media accounts as this helps me promote my business. If you do not want me to share your photos, please do let me know. Your gallery will be live for three months so that you can download, save and print your photos.
One last thing before you go...
If you haven't already done so, please would you email me with your mobile phone number, the names of your family members and (if you have the time) a little bit about your family. Knowing these things in advance helps me to get the most out of your session and capture unique images that reflect who you truly are, right now.
If you have any further questions or want clarification on anything mentioned above, please do not hesitate to message, call or email me. I can't wait to meet you and photograph your family!