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Celebrating 10 years of Pregnancy Photography
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Tag Archives: baby
Spring has sprung, it feels truly wonderful to have warmer days and lighter evenings!! So to celebrate I have decided to hold a spring flash sale. Perhaps this will be the ultimate, low calorie, Easter gift for the whole family!
This means that you can enjoy a family photo shoot, capture a special time in your life, or simply give a shoot voucher as a gift, simply click to choose your preferred option:
HURRY – LIMITED AVAILABILITY AND SALE ENDS ON THE 1ST APRIL 2015 – NO JOKE!!
Types of shoots available in the sale are: Family, Pregnancy, Newborn and Baby shoots.
Each shoot will last for up to 1 hour in a location of your choosing (some travel may be charged)
Your images will be professionally edited, ready for you to view in a private gallery a week after the shoot.
Each package includes a disc of professionally edited images in colour and black & white as well as a unique phone app for showing off your fabulous photos.
All Flash Sale shoots must be taken by the 25th September 2015 (if not then the value will count towards the prices of shoots at that time and are valid for use until 31st December 2015)
Can be bought as gifts.
Limited availability – sale ends 1st April 2015
Oh My! I can’t quite believe that it’s been 10 years since I first started my pregnancy photography business back in 2003.
When I first began photographing bumps back in 1999, NO-ONE in the UK was offering a specialist/dedicated maternity photography service. I know, because I trawled the adverts, magazines and internet looking for someone. In the end a lovely art student took some photos of me, which was the turning point for today. I gave birth to a gorgeous baby girl who was probably the most photographed baby on the planet!! I went back to work in the City part-time but still this niggling voice kept saying “go on you can do it!” I went back to college (St Martins) and sharpened my craft, meeting some amazing photographers along the way! I began asking pregnant women to pose for me so I could develop a style…not many took me up on the offer as they all thought I was a bit weird for asking! Then, the ‘hooha’ over THAT image of Demi Moore kicked up again and suddenly pregnant women ‘got it’! I had a bouncing baby boy in the meantime and planned my business during his first year. I was one of just 4 photographers in the UK offering a dedicated pregnancy photography service. Clients travelled from all over the UK and even Europe (they came by ferry!) to be photographed.
My husband, although supportive, didn’t think that many pregnant women would want their photos taken. He did, however, buy me a bigger camera to get me started. A Pentax with manual everything including focus and film. Imagine! Digital SLR’s weren’t around then, so you had to know your settings and exposures. I found some hand-printers to develop my work, and gradually word spread…..BBC South Today ran a news piece on prime time TV of me actually photographing a pregnant lady and then spent hours interviewing us for a 2 minute piece. I was so excited although I do regret not having had my hair done properly! Next, BBC Radio 2 presenter Janey Lee Grace and I worked together when she was pregnant with baby number 3 and again with baby no 4, much of this work is in both her wonderful books ‘Imperfectly Natural Mother’ and ‘Imperfectly Natural Baby and Toddler’ More book work and celebrity shoots with TV presenters, actors and stunning models followed…usually with me completely unaware of who I was about to photograph ( I am not good at recognising famous people – I photographed an event for a Chelsea footballer, blissfully unaware – sorry boys!) I’ll never forget arriving at the home of one client, to have the door opened by her husband who at the time was a reasonably famous actor and is now a VERY big Hollywood A lister (I won’t name names) and it was an absolute delight to photograph both of them. Becoming a parent is no different, whether you are in the spotlight or not. You still want to do these special things to celebrate such a wonderful time in your lives. More recently I have photographed the wonderful Sir Bruce Forsyth (top man!), Denise Lewis OBE and many more at a charity golf day.
Word about my work spread and for a number of years I worked closely with the NCT (National Childbirth Trust) head office producing their national breastfeeding campaign posters, most of which are still in use today. As well as producing the perfect baby bottom image for Metanium cream!!
Pregnancy photography has been my absolute passion all the way through. In the beginning I was determined to educate women that they can be photographed pregnant and nude and look amazing. I worked with Photography magazines, pregnancy books and magazines, who ran my articles and published my work. Gradually more and more pregnant women realised how beautiful they looked. Other photographers also picked up on this fast-growing trend. I am pleased to say that many styles you see today were inspired by much of my original work, although I am still one of a few photographers who work with pregnant nudes. Women I have never met before, seem more than happy to take the majority of their clothes off and stand in all their glowing glory while I photograph them in flattering ways. Everyone tells me that I quickly make them feel at ease, and that having a bump also acts as a shield for their nudity. I love seeing their expression as they spend precious time interacting with their bumps and thinking of things to come – simply breath-taking.
I never planned to go on to photograph newborns and babies, that side of the business evolved as clients returned time and again with their growing families. The age of digital meant I could do away with a permanent studio and was able to be even more flexible with where and how I photographed. My first digital camera? A Canon 20D with just 8.2MP!! My Samsung phone has more than that today!! These days I work with a Canon 5D mk I and mkII.
I am constantly learning new techniques and skills, you never stop learning. I began teaching a few years ago running workshops and courses in primary and senior schools, as well as with local councils, teaching their teachers how to use their cameras better and how to engage their pupils using the power of photography. I LOVE running workshops and enabling people, especially parents, how to develop enough knowledge to confidently come off their AUTO buttons and take better photos. Seeing those little ‘light bulb’ moments as everything falls into place is brilliant! I can also proudly watch the successes of people who have now realised their dream of becoming a professional photographer through training they have had with me.
Local community is really important to me and putting back wherever possible is essential. The support I have received from my local community has been fantastic, and over the years we have raised lots of money for the NCT; special baby units; childhood eye cancer (CHECT), and local special needs play-schemes (who has a rather splendid fireman’s calendar then!?) to name but a few. Wherever possible I donate gift vouchers, time and prizes to local schools and events.
These last 10 years have been an absolute blast! I have discovered so much about taking photos and working with various people that I am really excited about the next 10 years!!
So, whats next? Well my business has now split into three distinct sections:
Tina Bolton Photography still offers THE highest standards of professional maternity and newborn photography to a wonderful array of clients (thank you – you know who you are!) with only the absolute best products and two very distinct collections to choose from.
Blue Hedgehog Photography aims to bring a simpler service to a wider audience, still concentrating on bumps, babies and under 3’s, however, I have developed a ‘junior’ team of photographers who, with occasional help from me, will capture your pregnancy or baby’s moments on a more restricted budget.
Cameras and Cake (the name derives from my first ever workshops I ran a few years ago) which provides three hour, fun, coffee morning style workshops, to learn how to use your camera better. I can now announce that the on-line version of this and a few other courses will be launching very soon. Watch this space.
Finally, I would like to say thank you to all of my lovely, lovely clients from the last 10 years. In particular to those who were my earliest pregnancy clients – you were also ahead of your time and you were brave enough to trust me with your glorious bumps!
A wonderful video celebrating the last 10 years to the right!
Runny noses, blotchy faces, scratches….all these things happen just before that special photo shoot don’t they? Will the photographer be able to ‘do something’ in Photoshop with them?
I thought it would be interesting to show you a before and after of a recent shoot in the forest. It was a very cold day and this cute little chap had got everything! Runny, red nose, cold blotches and a scratch on his forehead!
Runny noses are best wiped but sometimes that expression is so fleeting that it needs to be captured quickly and there simply isn’t time to wipe that nose! Plus, who likes having their nose wiped anyway, guaranteed to annoy any small person and potentially ruin the moment.
Children LOVE being outside, so we took this family on an adventure in the woods and went hunting for rabbits and dinosaurs!! The mum was worried that his little red nose would spoil the pictures, as I am sure most mums would, but as you can clearly see, some careful post-production means that his skin is clear and there is no need to worry!
It’s not just outdoor shots that need help, newborn babies are notorious at scratching their faces the day before a shoot or suddenly coming out in ‘baby acne’. All these things are skillfully fixed in Photoshop. I take the time to check each image and carefully remove marks and blemishes. The trick is to make it look as if it’s completely natural. New parents usually look a little tired…some subtle adjustments again means that those dark shadows are all but gone!
So, when deciding whether or not to have a shoot, choose your photographer carefully, sometimes that little bit of extra care in the post production stages can make all the difference. Not everything can be dealt with ‘in-camera’!!
Tina’s Top tips for great Festive photos
Christmas pictures lacking a little something? Follow these great tips to add a bit more sparkle to your festive photos!
- Make sure your camera is fully charged, that there is room on your memory card and your lens is clean!
- For fab party pics of your friends, ask them to put their heads together, lean forward a little bit (never back) everyone looks their best and less chins are visible!!
- Remember: your camera flash will only work up to a distance of about 10-12 feet maximum, on smaller cameras even less.
- Make sure you have the ‘red eye’ flash on your camera, remember that the first smaller flash is followed by the bigger flash.
- For those cute, adorable nativity play shots, Choose either a front seat OR an aisle seat so you can stand up without blocking anyone’s view from behind. Use flash only if you really have to. Most camera’s have a night-time function which increases your camera’s ability to take low light shots without a flash.
- Wait until the end of the play – or the ‘gathering around the manger’ bit as this is usually well lit and everyone is still.
- Christmas cards, we love the cute ones of our kids in a Santa* outfit!! (*Or whatever you choose!!) Make time to dress them up and pose them, sit them safely (deep in the sofa perhaps), as near to window light as you can and take some pictures. Better still come to one of my free toddler group mini sessions with that special outfit (see below for details).
- On Christmas Day – have that camera to hand ALL the time, especially for when Grandad falls asleep and you manage to draw a moustache on him!
- Take a photo of each present your children opens, you can then print/email this out as a thank you to the person who sent it, they’ll love seeing the smiles of delight.
- Make sure you are in one or two pictures with the kids as well, looking suitably festive!
Have a lovely Christmas!
When you open that new camera on Christmas Day, remember to book your place on one of my photography workshops in January, so you can REALLY get the best out of your camera – better still, make sure that a workshop gift voucher is part of the package!! Download Tina Bolton Photography festive photography tips as a pdf.
Mini Santa Shoot Sessions are being held as follows:
Thursday 8th November – NCT Small Talk & Baby Talk, United Reform Church, Petersfield, 10-12
Wednesday 14th November – Baby Sensory Classes, Greatham Village Hall, 10-12
Monday 19th November – NCT Haslemere – Royal School, Hindhead, 10-12
Tuesday 20th November – Baby Sensory, St Alban’s Church, Hindhead 10-12
Thursday 22nd November – Baby Sensory, Haslemere Prep School, Hill Road, 9.30-2pm
I will also be at Stepping Stones in Sheet, date to be confirmed.
Phew, these last few weeks have been an absolute whirlwind of Jubilee photo shoots. Thank you to everyone who has been involved so far…there are still more to come! (Details at the bottom) At one school we had great fun with an amazing Union Jack Scooter…
Even I got in on the act!
I wasn’t the only one, many of the teachers and even some of the Mums hopped on too!
The Jubilee shoots were for children of all ages and we visited many toddler groups and nurseries. We did a special Jubilee shoot in Cute of Petersfield (a wonderful children’s shop!) which helped to raise money for the www.owenbishopcharity.com fund and www.wave105.com/cashforkids
Your feedback has been wonderful, thank you, one mum said: “I just wanted to say that the Jubilee shot of my daughter is fantastic!! In every other supposedly professional shot we have, she is always pulling a self conscious ‘photo-face’. She tells me that having the photos taken were great fun and that she enjoyed it – definitely a first! Order already placed, thank you so much.” Clare, Liss
There is still time to place your orders – you should have received your gallery password by now. Here’s a few more to make you smile!
Finally, we will be at the Baby Sensory classes in Hindhead, Haslemere and Greatham w/c 11th June, no need to book just come along! See you there!
This is a question I am asked most often. The answer I usually give is it is your choice. I love photographing children, who are capable of walking, out and about – jumping, chasing, exploring. The light is usually great and you can capture them in a very natural environment. Sometimes though, a cleaner, ‘white’ look is required – in the style of the iconic GAP ads. If you are considering a shoot and don’t think your home is suitable, think again! The majority of my work is in client’s homes. Some of these shots are most definitely taken on location, but which were taken in the studio?
It was an exhausting day for everyone and after a quick lunch and some restorative cups of tea with cakes (for the adults not the babies!) We were asked to use one of the lovely hats that Mum had brought which we think worked really well..
All in all it was a fantastic day and a big thank you to everyone involved. Thank you to my two lovely assistants Michelle and Natalie for endless cups of tea, ‘poo watch’ 😉 , photos of me in action, and general all round lots of cooing!!
Newborn babies need carefully handling, lots of patience and a warm, calm environment in order to get the best out of them at a photo shoot – so you can imagine the fun when twins arrive at the studio. Luckily these two gorgeous boys were very chilled…most of the time!