A family photoshoot in Warwickshire - the Mum's concerns beforehand, and how she felt a couple of years later.

What do you want your children to remember most about their childhood?

Before her family photoshoot, Gemma (not her real name) was concerned about her 5 year old daughter. Milly was very shy and had been really stiff at a previous photoshoot with a different photographer. We chatted about it on the phone beforehand and I reassured her. The location we decided on was their big garden (bursting with Springtime colour), providing a meaningful backdrop of the family home.  Milly would also feel more confident there. And we could include Gemma’s elderly mother-in-law and the rabbits!

I spent some time with Milly before getting a camera out. We played with her toys, she showed me round the garden with all its hiding places, and soon we were best buddies.  We then created some fabulous photos in the daffodils and even using a family heirloom item of clothing for Milly.

Afterwards Gemma said “I love the photos. I was amazed at how Milly took to you. She is usually so shy.“

A couple of years later in lockdown, she thought about the real value of the photos: “It’s two years since you took those wonderful photos of us all and we were just looking through them. During these times, they seem even more precious than before, and we are so grateful that we have them. Thanks for everything you did and for that little bit of magic you seem to add.”

Sometimes, it’s also the long view that’s important. The photos take pride of place in Gemma’s home now. In years to come, they’ll be even more valuable. For Milly, they’ll bring back lovely, comforting memories of her childhood in that garden, and her close relationship with her Grandma, her family (and the rabbits).

I’m a specialist children’s and family photographer based in Warwickshire, UK, and travelling internationally.