Maddy & Chris have welcomed their second son and I caught up with them last week to capture their in-home newborn lifestyle session in Wollongong.
The Bell Family
Meet Saxon! I just love in-home sessions! Even more so, I love telling the stories of the extended families of my previous clients. This was the case with how this session came about, when Sam, one of my 2016 wedding clients, contacted me about a newborn session for her brother and sister in law, and their adorable new arrival, Saxon.
Saxon was 5 months at the time of our session. Newborn sessions are generally best held between the first 2 weeks earth-side if you're wanting the cuddly, sleepy, more or less standard style of newborn photos. Rebecca & Jono thought we'd wait til little Saxon was a few months older, so we could have his personality shining through and I'm so glad we did!
Towards the end of their gallery, you'll see we included sentimental gifts that had been given to Saxon by his family. Something tells me given his eye's never left it, and that grip was super tight that we may have a footy star here as he grows up! He just loved that football!
You'll notice from this gallery that my in-home sessions are a documentation of what "daily life" could consist of for your family. I like to stand back and watch the interactions amongst my subjects unfold, rather than rigid, stale posing. A lot of laughs, a lot of tickles, a lot of your own inside moments all the while allowing your personalities and love within your family shining through your images.
I'd love to capture your family's story!
When I first put out word that I would be in the Quirindi/Tamworth region briefly between Christmas and New Year, the Graham family were quick to respond! They were actually due to have their bundle of joy right at this time - I mean, talk about perfect timing, right! Due to the uncertainty of actual due dates, and when babies decide they'd actually like to enter the world, there was a very real possibility that we may not have gotten our session in. However! I got a wonderful email the week before I was leaving, right before Christmas saying that baby Archer had arrived earlier than planned!
9 days old at our session, and his parents hearts so full of love for their first-born. This is the perfect session to answer a few questions I'd had recently about how I conduct my newborn sessions, and what "in home lifestyle" really means. In short, these sessions are essentially all about capturing what's going on in a "day in the life" kind of way. So no un-natural activities, more or less capturing your family, in your home with your new baby, if it's an in-home newborn session (I offer in-home maternity, family and couple sessions also!).
You'll see from the starting images here, I captured bath time. It can get VERY warm in the Liverpool Plains region, being inland it doesn't have the coastal breeze I've become to take for granted living in coastal Wollongong. So we started our session with a bit of a cool off, and bath time for Archer, which he loved - I mean check out those adorable facial expressions!
I look around your home (not in stealth mode sussing it out, just glancing!) for little decorative elements that make your home unique (signs, photos, etc). I just loved the quote that serves at the first image of the series about loving you more than chocolate! With newborns, this is also a great way to include heirlooms and sentimental gifts. Handmade toys, clothing or blankets I LOVE to include, not only due to their intrinsic value, but also as the Grandparents/Godparents/Extended friends and family, etc love them also, as it shows that their gift is being cherished.
And I love pets too! Though I saw these gorgeous pup's in photos on the wall, during this session I didn't meet any four-legged family. But with a lot of my sessions, indoor cats definitely get some shutter-time! Four-legged family to me are part of the family network too, and I love to include them in your in-home session.
If you're situated within the Liverpool Plains region and were interested in booking in a session with me, please get in touch! I have family in the area and am planning on heading back up in the near future.
Margaret & Peter
It’s not very often that I shoot for myself (this is one of my New Years resolutions!). It’s also not very often I see my Grandparents who live 6 hours drive from me, in a town called Quirindi which is situated about 45 minutes south of Tamworth, NSW.
Between Christmas and New Year, you know the few days that most are still recovering from the aftermath of Christmas? Not me! I took the trip up to the Tamworth region to visit, and I thought I’d kick off this resolution early and capture them in their backyard garden, being one of their many pride and joys!
Growing up, my Grandma had 2 cats, both whom have since passed. Their current cat just kind of found them, and decided that she'd like to spend her time over at their place. It's crazy how animals can just have this sense of belonging about them, and just decide that they'd like to be here or like to be there - just find their own fit!
This was a very special session for me, and also one of the shortest I've ever captured. This entire series was shot over probably 10 minutes in their yard, in the warmth of the December Summer afternoon. But it's sessions like this that hone in to me on how and why capturing the people you love is so important. This year I aspire to shoot a lot more for myself, as it's images like these that just hold so much significance to myself and extended family - I feel like I was one of my clients receiving my images back when I finished processing this set!
Jess & Harper
Jess and Harper are high school sweethearts. Although in different years at school, their story begins at a high school swimming carnival. 7 years on from then, here we were at our session yesterday. They've got a full of beans son Elijah who's too cute for words!!
Harper started on testosterone earlier this year, commencing his female-male transition. Prior undergoing hysterectomy surgery to further continue the transition, Harper hopes to bear a child, just ticking off that last box of woman-hood. On his personal Facebook account, Harper has teed up with a fellow trans friend of his, and they've filmed Q&A videos explaining all about themselves, transgender and the process involved, and everything in between which is being widely viewed by the community!
I truly had a blast with Harper, Jess & Eli yesterday. So much love within this little family, and we connected instantly like we'd been friends for years. Just such a down-to-earth couple and even though all Eli wanted to do was play on the nearby playground his lollypop bribe kept his attention for our session!
Today the results of the Australian Marriage survey came in, after the tally of our nation's say has been counted. The result was a majority YES, and I truly hope to see that in the future, Australian marriage laws are changed to allow same-sex couples to wed.
Amy & Nicole
These two gorgeous women have been together for 9 years! And, they tell me they're still as much in love now as they ever have been.
This session is part of our free mini sessions for those who identify as LBGTIQ. Under the #rainbowloveau initiative, created by the lovely Nic over at Fox & Kin, I am the Illawarra photographer offering free 30 minute mini sessions to LBGTIQ. Read more about this on Nic's blog. There is an insane amount of photographers who have jumped onboard all over Australia, and now branching internationally. How awesome is that?! Check out the blog if you're outside the Illawarra and interested in a session to find the photographer in your local area.
Our entire session was full of their inside jokes, embracing how ticklish Amy is, avoiding spider webs and exploring through bushland.
Tash & Mike // Couple Session
From the moment that Tash enquired, I knew we were going to have an amazing session! You can tell a lot from how people word their emails, and Tash's were filled with emoji's and exclamation marks - my favourite! :)
We met at one of my favourite spots in the Illawarra, with angry looking skies to the north, but clear blue skies with radiant sunshine to the west. I was greeted with 3 absolutely beaming smiles, and excitement for our session! Tash is from Sydney, Mike from the northern suburbs of Wollongong and have been together for a while now. And then there's the beautiful Amani, such a beautiful 6 and a half year old, with a giggle that'd make the crankiest smile!
Mike was telling me that alllll Tash wanted was water shots. And this was totally okay with me! Thankfully at the spot I chose, there's waves, but there's also a deeper rock pool that is sheltered and the water is almost still. Thankfully being Spring, the water is quite temperate!
Tash and Mike are such a beautiful couple. I have tricks and ways to generate the natural emotion out of my couples, as having your photo taken can be an awkward thing and take some warming up to - but with these two I didn't them! They just have so much love for each other, and just like to have fun together, which made my job an absolute breeze. Capturing these personalities together exactly as they are, relaxed, raw and real.
Well, what a year Candice & Rhys have had! From wedding planning, to becoming new parents!
Initially, they were to be married last month - but when they found out they were expecting this precious bundle of joy, plans changed. So just like that, we'd changed their wedding booking to a maternity/newborn - and now for when the time comes again to get back into wedding planning, they have beautiful Piper there to spend their day with them! I've heard many reasons as to why weddings have been called off/postponed, but I think this one is the best!
So here she is, Miss Piper at 2.5 weeks old!
Baby Cameron was delivered at home just 4 weeks ago with the love and help by Dad and close friend Tegan, the amazing creative behind My Little Peony! He arrived by surprise, and from the direction of medical staff over the phone he was delivered safe and sound!
He is the 3rd edition to their family - poor Belinda is outnumbered in a house full of boys!
They reside in such a gorgeous property near Hornsby, which backs onto a nature reserve. What a view to have in your backyard!
To sum up the Wallis family - A family so full of love & the proudest, cheekiest big brothers I've ever met!
Baby Sage had a bit of a rocky start to her life, spending a bit of time in her first few weeks of life back and forth from the hospital. She is so precious, and her parent's hearts are absolutely full of love for their little one.
Miss Sage was blessed with lots of cuddles and kisses from Mum and Dad in our session, and even her favourite sounds from a phone application of a vacuum cleaner which she absolutely loves!
Alicia & Max // Couple Session
This session just came about by chance. Alicia was my 'fresher' at our residential college at university. Kinda the similar way that the American system has sorority/fraternity hierarchy, Australian residential colleges have adapted a similar concept for new residents to mingle with old residents - thankfully without all the other steps of initiation that we see and hear in the media!
Aaanyway, we got to talking, and Alicia mentioned she was interested in a session with her boyfriend Max. The connection between these two is unreal. They are so incredibly in love, and this showed in our session. This session was a lot of fun!
Natali & Jake // Anniversary
This was the first time I'd been contacted to capture a first wedding anniversary - but I thought, what a good idea! A year on from marrying the love of your life, should absolutely be celebrated with a photo session to commemorate this first, of many annual milestones. Mia, their Rottweiler fur-baby tagged along and of course, stole the spotlight!