It’s hard to believe how quickly this year has gone by, hasn’t it?
Between baby portrait sessions, both for newborns and older babies, Baby’s First Year Plan, maternity shoots and more… I’m waxing nostalgic today as I sort through the past year’s images. And I’m thankful to have documented so many photos of families as they grow.
As the Harlow studio nears the end of its 15th year, I wanted to look back on my favourite sessions from 2019 to share the images with you – and of course, the stories behind them!
1. A child portrait session as a surprise gift from the grandparents.
Anita and John from Harlow look after their granddaughter a couple of times a week.
One day, they nipped to the studio to create a beautiful Christmas present for their son and daughter in law. They ended up choosing this gorgeous child portrait of their granddaughter in her christening dress.
I smile when I think about this sweet photo hanging up as wall art in a cherished room the house.
2. The first of 3 Baby Club portraits, documenting his first year.
I don’t tend to do many shoots in December, as the cut-off for getting orders returned by the lab is the first week in December. In case bad weather impacts deliveries of the final products, I try not to go down to the wire like this!
However this little chap came in – he was 6 weeks old and who could say no to his precious face?
This was the first of three sessions covering his first year, available as an option for parents through Baby Club.
We finished his final session last month – he’s ready for nursery and Mum is ready to go back to work (and has.)
3. Growing families return with baby number two.
This was a truly special day as there were not one, but two (!) repeat clients who came into the studio with their second baby.
Both babies were girls, and both their mums wanted to capture baby’s first year. This was the first of their 3 sessions of the year.
4. Baby’s first days captured to share with family abroad.
Rose from Broxbourne was 12 days new when her parents brought her in for this shot.
As I’ve mentioned before on the blog, I adore black and white for newborn or baby portrait sessions. It helps keep the focus on the family’s love for their little one instead of mum and dad worrying about their sleep-deprived faces.
As I happily snapped away, I was told that many of their family members were overseas, and eager to see photos of Rose. I immediately got to work after the session to deliver the edits for them.
5. Sassy 6 month old.
One of the things that I hear often from parents is that once they miss the newborn phase, they end up skipping baby portrait sessions altogether.
But not to worry, you can schedule a session at any age in their first year.
Take little Sofia here from Harlow, for instance. She was 6 months old and full of character.
It’s such a great age to capture on camera, as they are full of expression and cheekiness (pun intended!).
#6. Birthday offer for previous clients.
For previous clients, I offer a birthday shoot for their baby. As part of the package, I include a framed 7×5” as my present to them.
Jo then returned with all her girls for her eldest daughter’s birthday.
And we created this montage for the wall to go up in their home.
7. Out in nature.
With older children, I like to go on location, and use nature as the backdrop for their portraits.
It helps me indulge in my first love of landscape photography, whilst giving the subject of my camera a chance to interact with their environment and (hopefully) feel a little less self-conscious!
8. Elegant bump session before baby arrives.
Katy brought this dress in for her maternity shoot, and it was hard not to ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ over the lovely way it highlighted her growing bump.
This was taken on a training shoot – every year I like to reinvest in the business by taking myself off to shoot with colleagues, bounce ideas around, and create beautiful photographs.
It recharges my creativity, and I walk away with stunning shots like this one!
9. Yes, you can capture a toddler in stillness.
Phoebe was 18 months, which we all know is when they’re at their most energetic!
If I’m being honest, the stillness in this photograph represents probably just one tiny second of the entire shoot. She was very active!
No need to worry, over the years I’ve learned plenty of ways of making toddlers like Phoeobe think they are in charge – but ultimately get them to do what I would like them to do. (A bit like husbands, really.)
Learn more about a Photography Session for your children here: https://suekennedy.co.uk/child-portrait-photography/
10. Baby Club boy.
Little Ernest from Stansted in Essex, joined Baby Club (now Baby Milestone Plan) and we took this first photo of him back in August.
His 2 older brothers have also been photographed by me, so they were happy to assist me with entertaining their little brother. And yes, they all had a full head of hair at this age too!
I’m looking forward to the other photoshoots Ernest will have as part of his Baby Club membership next year.
11. From bump to baby.
This Harlow couple was so excited about meeting their new baby, it reminded me of how I felt when I was expecting my daughter. (You do forget!) And this is another little girl that has Daddy wrapped around her little finger.
Even though they’re still running on little sleep, learning the new ins and outs of parenting with their child – they didn’t want to miss a moment.
So they took time to record both bump and baby, as seen in these two different shots.
And they’ve also signed up for Baby Milestone PLan – which kicked off with their newborn session!
To book your own tailored bump-to-baby session, drop me a line here.
12. A prince and a king.
I loved how creative this family was.
They booked this shoot to mark little Jaden’s first birthday. And they personalised with these fab t-shirts. Mum’s shirt, obviously, said Queen.
I’m happy to work with parents to see their ideas come to life in their portrait sessions. But if you’re stuck for ideas, I’ve got you covered, too ;).
And finally, a massive thank you to all the incredible families who’ve trusted me with creating legacy portraits for their houses and homes.
I look forward to seeing more of you in the studio in the new year.
About the photographer: Sue is a professional portrait photographer based in Harlow, Essex and she specialises in baby and child portraiture. Being a parent, she understands just how special your child is to you and her aim is to produce a collection of images that are natural and meaningful to your family. No two moments are ever the same and she wants to perfectly capture those early precious memories and the natural character of your child. For more information please call 01279 433392, or visit the Sue Kennedy Photography website.