I headed to Sefton Park in Liverpool on Sunday morning to meet Suzanne, Matt, Milo and Bethany Wong for their family photo shoot. Emily volunteered to come along too to act as principal bag carrier. She most definitely earned her money!
I went to the park early to try to finalise the plan for the shoot. I had been before the previous weekend but the lighting each day can be so different. It was a beautiful (if not slightly windy and cold for June) day – and although it’s not something I worry about too often, I was worried about it being too sunny and all the pictures turning out with strange shadows cast across people’s faces. Thankfully, we got a bit of cloud cover and all was o.k.
Suzanne and Matt were lovely and didn’t seem to mind me advising them on different poses. Bethany was a bit tentative at first but then got into things – with the help of her brother Milo I think! I think I got some good shots and in the process I discovered which of my ideas worked better than others... This is good as it’s all part of the learning process and I should be able to refine my technique for next time!
Afterwards we all went for lunch on Lark Lane at a great place called the Milo Lounge. That was really nice to catch up with Emily and get to know the Wong family a bit better. I am also quite excited that it is dog friendly and have advised Paul that we should go to Sefton Park one Sunday for a walk with Stella and then go there for brunch afterwards. Sounds like a plan to me. Yum yum.
In terms of the lessons that I am taking away from Sunday, I think the main ones are:
1. Small people move fast. Quick shutter speed required to capture the non-posing, in-between moments!
2. Having ideas of lots of different poses helps to keep attention when little ones are involved. This also gave me the confidence to direct poses and be a little (but hopefully not too) bossy!
3. The Milo Lounge on Lark Lane is dog friendly. This is reason in itself to arrange a subsequent visit with Paul and Stella. The fact that the food was nice helps too.
4. Having Emily there was very helpful as she to not only carried some of props but also to come up with some cute suggested poses that I hadn’t thought of… I do definitely recommend an assistant on a photo shoot like this. Thanks Emily.
5. Drafting a plan for the day by visiting the location ahead of time (ideally at a similar time of day and in similar weather… yes, I know. Tricky!) was really, really helpful.
Next on the list is a session I’ve arranged with a band called Retrospect. This is completely different from taking pictures of a family group so time to start thinking about and planning for that!