Posted in Portraits

Adelaide Childcare Photography

Cheese is delicious, not for the camera!


Where on earth did this expression “cheese” come from?  Really, it’s a wonderful edible delicacy that derives from dairy products – how did it end up as something we teach our children to say when they look at a camera?

Each and every year I photograph many hundreds of preschool children (I now tell people when they ask what I do “I’m a professional photographer and I specialise in photographing children under the age of 5”) it’s NOT for the feint hearted.  Working with young children is rewarding and keeps the child inside me alive.  My job requires me to get kids to relax in front of the camera and play instead of realising I’m there to photograph them, with some kids it’s easy, with others, not so much.

I’m after those genuine smiles, not the teeth grinding, stiff lipped, mum told me I HAVE to smile for the photographer today smile.  How do I achieve this?  It varies with every child, and as part of my daily workflow, I have about 1.6 seconds to work out.  Is little Jonny is excited, scared, shy or brimming with excitement to be my supermodel for a few minutes in front of my camera?  It has to be intuitive with each and every child I photograph.

My job is to capture YOUR child, give you a professional quality photograph and pay attention to the little details that can make or break a photo that is going to be with your family for many years to come. It is a momento from your child’s pre-school years, and as time goes by, these become increasingly more and more precious.  That’s something I take incredibly seriously.  Each and every child’s preschool photograph that makes the “grade” has the Mummy Test (the measure I use every time I photograph in childcare centres).  It’s one simple question:  Would I be happy receiving this photograph as a parent?  Each and every photo I prepare for parents HAS to meet this test.

After more than a decade of working with young children, I still love the daily challenge of creating great preschool portraits.  I don’t just want to record your child’s childcare and kindy photos, I want to create amazing photographs that make you smile every time you look back on this fleeting time in your families life.

I photograph in preschool centres from as far north in the Barossa, Noarlunga in the south and  Murray Bridge in the east.  Here is a little more info about Photoplay Studios Childcare Photography service.

Posted in Portraits, Weddings

What to wear to a family portrait session

Preparing the family for your portrait photography session

One of the most time consuming tasks in preparing for a family portrait session is getting the families clothes ready, it’s not a decision you want to be leaving until the 11th hour.  With careful planning and consideration, you will be setting your family portraits up to be timeless, something you will admire for years to come.

Creating your family portraits is important – lets face it, you finally got your hubby/partner to agree to being photographed, a little bit of planning for your portrait day will go a long way.  I’ve put together a list of suggestions, to help you select your family wardrobe.  The most important thing to remember is to stay true to your families personality as your photos will hang in your home for many years to come.

Before pulling out every dress your daughter owns (or getting online and finding that dream outfit you always wanted an excuse to purchase) consider your family decor.  It may sound like a strange place to start, but you are going to display your family portraits around your home, a cohesive look and feel in your portraits will stand the test of time in the living areas of your home.  You want a classic look and not a “moment in time” to remember that your son was a mad keen ninja turtle fan.

Staying Comfortable

During your photo shoot you are going to having fun as a family, snuggling and giggling with your kids.  Make sure your clothing choices for the whole family are comfortable.  I’m not suggesting you wear your yoga pants but please ensure you and the kids can move comfortably in your clothes.  Ensure your buttons don’t pucker, it’s just not flattering and if you are a little self conscience about your weight, wear sleeves that at least come to your elbow.  Your arms take up more skin area than your face, drawing attention to them.  Keep your jewellery simple so it does not detract from your face, wear a “normal” amount of makeup and if you are planning on having a haircut, arrange to have it done 2 weeks prior to your photo shoot.  On the day, choose a hairstyle suitable for the conditions on the day.  You don’t want to be constantly fighting the wind with stray hairs over your face for your beach family portrait session.  If you plan on a spray tan, please don’t overdo it as you will end up looking too orange.  If you have very young children, I would suggest forgoing the spray tan altogether, children have very fair skin and its quite noticeable if mum decided on a tan for the photo shoot…not a good look.

Choosing Clothing

Lets start with shoes.  You can put the most adorable outfit on the kids but if you don’t give consideration to their shoes and throw their everyday sneakers (which didn’t get cleaned after a trip to the river last weekend) on as you are walking out the door it can spoil the outfit.  You don’t need to purchase new shoes, however please ensure they are clean and neat prior to your session.  If you are having a photo session in the studio – forget the shoes altogether – we use flokati rugs etc and the kids look great in bare feet.  Please choose clothing without branding or logos, it’s just not going to stand the test of time on your lounge room wall.  If you have little girls (under 2) in your family and you plan on putting them in a dress, consider how the dress sits on them when they sit on the ground.  In most cases it’s best to put a cute little nappy cover on them as inevitably we end up with the most beautiful smile, but they have not yet learn’t “how to be a lady” and we end up with them flashing their nappy – spoiling the shot.

Colour Selections

Clothing colour choices make the portrait and you want them to be a non issue.  Avoid bright reds oranges, neons and hot pink (any bright colours really).  These can overpower and the portrait session is about the people, not the clothes.  Choosing solid colours, muted tones and similar tones for both tops and bottoms works great, it’s easier to see all your faces and no individual person stands out. If you chose a white top and dark pants, it will make your top look bigger, the reverse will make your butt look bigger.  It helps to choose a base colour and then build one or two accent colours from there for your group portrait – you want clothes that go well together but don’t exactly match.  Knits photograph well and collars frame the face.  Its a great idea to “google” family portrait photos and scroll through the hundreds of photos  – you will soon see what images you are draw to and which images don’t suit your family style.  It also helps to show you a visual of which colours and tone work well together.  Classic colours that work for both genders are cream & beige, both light and dark grey tones, blues and greys.

I hope this info has helped narrow down your family clothing choices for your upcoming portrait session.  So long as no-one turns up in a neon spacesuit or paisley “onesie” you will look great!

Posted in Portraits

Kids photos AdelaideSchool holidays have been and gone – its been quite a while since I’ve taken time out to photograph my own kids.  I fixed that last week!  My eldest boy is loosing teeth at a rate of knots and growing up in so many ways.  My baby boy – as a kindy kid makes me smile with his fascination and enthusiasm for his world.  To top it all off, they are both enjoying each others company and for the most part playing harmoniously together. It’s a beautiful age and I’m soaking it up!  This photo was a result of dragging a toy wagon a good distance through the park on a sunny Wednesday afternoon in the hope of getting a photo of my 2 boys having some fun.  A small slope, fallen Autumn leaves and a desire to crash in to the bushes at the bottom of the “hill” resulted in portraits of my boys that will make it to my walls!  These photos are not just pictures to me – they are a beautiful memory of a wonderful outing with my boys – carefree spirits – and a time in their lives where life is wonderful, without pressure.  I really am living the dream – I get to enjoy my kids by taking time out during the school holidays, and have a career that I love – not too many people can say that, and I’m grateful.  Life is good. x

Posted in Portraits


Toddler PortraitsBotanic Park family photography Child Photography in Adelaide Family Photography 2015 Welcome to 2015!  Its been a busy start to the year with lots of family portraits in and around Adelaide – and plenty more to follow in the coming weeks.  This was an extra special session, we had family visit from interstate, its been 12+ months since photographing my brothers family, so it was time to head down to the park and update their family album!  I can’t wait to catch up lots of my clients in the next 12 months to add to their family photo collections.

Posted in Portraits

Childrens portrait photgoraphyMy first family portrait session today was bright and early.  I love photographing early in the day – the light is fantastic for portraits and always seems to look just that little bit better – well worth getting out of bed for! The weather was a bit wild but instead of fighting it, we went with the flow.  These 3 were so much fun I could hardly call it work.  The full portrait gallery from this session can be found here.

Posted in Portraits

Kids Christmas PhotosIts hard to call what I do a job when you get to have fun and create so much laughter with kids on a daily basis.  These 2 were no exception – infectious smiles and silly giggles – it was a great session!  Thanks for letting me create some portraits that I hope will make you smile every time you see them ;-).  The full gallery can be found here.

Posted in Portraits

Family portrait Photographer in AdelaideSaturday afternoon I got tot spend time with this beautiful family.  I’m normally crawling around on the ground chasing the odd toddler, but for this session I got to enjoy the company of these great kids!  Thanks for being great sports and jumping around like crazy people at times – I had a blast.  All the photos can be seen in our gallery.

Posted in Portraits

Adelaide family portrait photography Childrens portrait photographer AdelaideAfter a week of wet wintery weather the sun made a welcome appearance yesterday for a portrait session in the gardens.  To view all the images from the session, please see our family portrait gallery.

Posted in Portraits

Family portraits in the park AdelaideIt may have been cold (ok, really cold and icy) and a bit wet in Adelaide today but come 4pm the sun broke through giving us that magic afternoon light we photographers chase.  Thanks Andrew & Grace to allowing me to photograph your family, I hope you enjoy the images as much as I enjoyed creating them for you.  All the images from the session can be viewed in the online gallery.

Posted in Portraits

Family photography Kids photography studio Adelaide Kids portrait photography Professional portrait photographer in AdelaideAnother beautiful Saturday morning spent in Adelaide’s park lands creating portraits – I can’t really call it a job, its too much fun!  I have families visit me from many places but this family traveled all the way from Pinnaroo, SA  for a session.  There is always lots of fun to be had swinging from branches, running down hills and exploring the parks.  Thanks for letting me spend some time with the four of you, I had a blast!  All the images from the session can be found in our family portrait gallery.