Colours to Wear for your Photoshoot

Posted on October 23, 2017 by Michelle under Photo Shoots Q&A
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Choosing which colours to wear for your photoshoot can turn a snap shot image into a professional family portrait.   You may end up with perfectly posed photos where everyone is looking and smiling at the camera.  But if you’re all wearing similar coloured or styles of clothing, the images go from lovely to outstanding!


The next time you pick up a magazine featuring a ‘celebrity at home’ style shoot where the famous mum is holding her baby and being cuddled by her husband in and around the stunning rooms in their mansion, check out what they’re wearing.   They may only be in jeans for one shot but I can guarantee the colours of their tops will either be the same or similar & complimentary colours.

To be honest if you pick the right patterns & colours, people won’t even notice what you’re wearing.  And this is a good thing as you’re having your photos taken to capture you and your beautiful family.  You’re not booking a family photo shoot with me to show off your wardrobe choices!   However, pick colours or patterns that clash with each other or dress one of you in shorts and another in a suit or evening dress and the clothes will be the first thing you and other people will notice.   I love photography for making time stand still for you by capturing your faces and it’s your faces I want everyone to notice straight away!

So, where do you start?   First are you booking an indoor studio shoot where the temperature won’t be an issue or an outdoor shoot where it could be baking in the summer or freezing in winter?  (for details on which photo shoot to book click here)

Lets start with a studio shoot where you have the largest choice of clothing as you’re not weather dependent.   Decide what look you’re going for – a fun casual family shoot where you can all be relaxed in jeans and t-shirts  / shirts or maybe you fancy all dressing up in your smart gear.   As long as the whole family are in the same style, that’s the first step.    The colours don’t have to be the same as each other.  Yes of course you can all wear white tops in various styles,  or how about all in blue tops but a variety of shades from baby blue to navy?    What time of year is it?  In spring and summer you may wish to go for bright colours or more rustic browns and oranges if it is Autumn.

Okay so you’ve decided on your style and colours for everyone.  But is everyone comfortable?   That last thing anyone wants is a photo taken of them in an outfit that no longer fits or they’ve been asked to wear against their will (insert ‘teenagers’ here… I have my own so know how important clothing choices are).   As a photographer I want to spend the shoot capturing the relationship between you all, the hugging, the laughing, the tender holding hands and smiles at each other…  If someone is pre-occupied by their outfit, they won’t be comfortable during the photos.

Do you want a themed photo shoot?   Is it coming up to Christmas?     Do you all want to come in your bright knitted Christmas jumpers and pop on Christmas hats?   Do you want to ‘photo booth’ fun shoot where you all put on funny hats, wigs and glasses?   How about re-creating a retro 1970’s or 1980’s  photo and come in old fashioned clothes?   The studio time is yours and a small amount of preparation can have a massive impact on your day.



Choosing what colours to wear for your photoshoot outdoors is exactly the same unless its really cold… not may families all happen to have warm coats that happen to match each in style and colour.  Therefore if you will be chilly, think about ditching the coats and putting on lots of cosy jumpers.   Add snuggly hats and scarves to the mix and suddenly you have the opportunity to compliment each others outfits.  I have a large variety of woolly hats you can borrow in autumnal colours.

Colour wheels – you probably learnt about these in Art lessons at school or if you have a passion for interior design you may have used one to match carpet colours to your furniture.   colour wheel, photo, colours to wear for your photoshoot, what colours to wear, chelmsford photographer, essex photographer, The wheel helps pick shades of the same colour and complimentary shades which are positioned opposite each other in the circle.  It shows the warmer colours on one side and cooler colours on the opposite side. You can also pick a colour, example orange, and see that its neighbours of yellow and red are similar enough to go together too.   I always say that black or white go with all colours as would dark grey.



What about clothes with patterns or do we all have to wear plain clothes?    When I take and edit my photos I do it with the intention of the photos being in colour.           

However, if a customer lets me know in advance that they are after black and white portraits, then all this talk of colour can go out of the window and patterns become important.

Patterns in black and white images take the place of colours but adding variety.     However don’t go too crazy with the variety of patterns – maybe all be in checked shirts but don’t add someone in spots.   Stripes are okay in varying widths and would also go well with checked patterns.



The final point I would like to make about what colours to wear for your photoshoot is that if in doubt, chat to me in advance of your shoot or bring a change of outfit with you on the day.   This guide is to help you with advance preparation so you consider everyone’s outfits.   If it starts to get stressful, however, then keep it simple.



Booking Maternity and Newborn Photoshoots

Posted on October 22, 2017 by Michelle under Photo Shoots Q&A
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Booking maternity and newborn photoshoots can create questions about what to expect.  Here I aim to provide you with a quick insight.

In the comfort of my studio you will have use of my beautiful outfits, whether they be stunning maternity gowns or teeny tiny newborn bonnets or knitted outfits.

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When booking Maternity and Newborn Photoshoots, be aware that photographers who offer newborn photography should always have been trained. You can rest assured that I have undertaken training with one of the country’s top newborn trainers to ensure your baby is comfortable and safe.  This enables me to capture stunning photos while they are in this newborn stage of their new lives.

Why Book?
Even after a few weeks you will notice differences in both your baby bump and once little one is here.  In fact once baby arrives you won’t believe the speed in which they grow and change.  You will be so relieved you booked your photoshoot to record these precious memories and make time stand still!  To book or ask questions, get in touch with Michelle today!   Full price information can be found by clicking here

Maternity Shoot:
You have a choice of different colour themes and outfits to show off your beautiful baby bump.  The session is short so you won’t be standing for too long but there is still plenty of time for a change of outfits and styles of poses.  You can even include your partner or other children.  

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Newborn Photo shoot Styles:
The newborn shoots is booked for up to 3 hours.  Don’t worry, not all sessions will take this long.  If baby needs mummy cuddles, milk top-ups and nappy changes, it may take a little more time to get the photos.   During this time we will get as many photos as baby will allow.  I will use as many different coloured outfits, in as many different poses and  variety of props and colour themes as I can.  You can choose to shorten the baby posed photos by having parent/sibling & baby photos taken.  If you don’t have any other children and don’t want to be in the photos, then the time will be spent showcasing your new bundle in natural sleepy or awake poses on comfy props. 

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Do we need a contract?
Booking Maternity and Newborn Photoshoots with my company comes with the security of a personalised contract detailing the following:  Date of the booking, the booking fee due, the balance due, the terms and conditions and what is expected by both parties before, during and after the booking.   I will send this to you electronically for you to read and sign.  You can then bring the contract with you on the day of photo shoot or pop it in the post to me.  You may wish to sign ‘online’ by simply stating you agree electronically via message on email or facebook for example.

What Happens during the newborn shoot?
When you arrive for your newborn shoot, you and your partner can relax on my sofa while I take the photos.  Ideally baby will have been fed before you arrive at the studio.  Again, ideally, they will be awake on arrival and will be eager for a quick top-up of milk before falling asleep for the photos.  My aim is to get as many poses and outfit changes as possible within the timeframe.  I want to provide you with a beautiful portfolio of images to choose from and fill you and your relatives homes with.   Yes baby will talk to us about not wanting to be changed and may decide they need a nappy change and more milk and we will listen to them!  A happy baby equals gorgeous photos!  

What should my partner and I wear?
If you wish to be in the photos with your baby, I would suggest liaising with each other so you come in similar styles of clothes.  For example both in jeans, or both in smart outfits and complimentary colours.  Maybe neutral colours would be good then we can dress baby in a variety of colours and you can stay as you are.  Whether you would like to be in the photos or not, some of the photos will be of baby in their skin and as such the studio will be heated to create a comfortable environment for them.  This will mean it is hot for us and I suggest you wear layers so you also remain comfortable!   I will no doubt be in shorts and a vest top with a bottle of water to hand!

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What happens after the photoshoot?
Booking Maternity and Newborn Photoshoots with my company doesn’t stop after I’ve taken the photos.  In fact that is only half the job.   After the photoshoot I will professionally edit your photos by hand, one by one. This is a long delicate process and is the investment you are making when booking maternity and newborn photoshoots with me.   I will ensure you receive the absolute best images captured on the day and fully edited ready for you to view in the comfort of your own home.   Before you leave the photoshoot, I will give you a password card so you can access your private password-protected gallery on my website, located in the Client Area.   

When will I be able to see the photos?
To ensure each image is given my full attention during the editing stage, please allow at least 14 days for the photos to be uploaded onto my website for viewing.  I will contact you as soon as they are ready.  Don’t worry if you misplace your password card – simply contact me and I will remind you of your password. 

What style of photos prints or digital files can I receive my images in?
There are x3 photo image packages to choose from.  Each include a wide variety of print styles and sizes and a variety of photo products depending on your budget and how & where the images will be displayed.   You can view the image packages on my website at any point in time (click here).  This is the time to begin planning where the canvases will be hung around your house, which relatives will receive the keyrings and glitter filled photo blocks.  Plan how many prints you want for your desk at work and which friends and family living miles away will receive copies of the digital files via email or on social media. 

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What if I only want to purchase the digital files?
I sell your entire gallery electronically as digital JPEG files, no matter how many images it includes, for just £299.   The individual images can be purchased for £20 each.  Purchasing the digital version of your image means you can send photos to family and friends electronically via email or on a social media website.  You also have the option to print the images as many times as you wish – an unlimited number of times!   Depending on where you choose to get your digital files printed, I cannot, however, be held responsible if you are unhappy.  Sometimes prints will not represent the colour and clarity of the images displayed on my website as every printer has slight variances of colour and quality.  

Can I have the raw files?
Sometimes a customer may ask for the raw file.  This is the electronic ‘negative’ from the olden days when cameras used film.   The electronic negative is what is produced when I click the button on my camera and cannot be opened in a computer without purchasing a professional editing program.   This version of the image is then hand edited to my professional standard and artist creative style.   I do not sell the raw unedited file and even if pushed, I would not sell it for less than £2000 per image.   

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Who owns copyright after the images have been purchased? Copyright of an image immediately belongs to me as soon as I click the camera as I have created the image.   The copyright will always remain with me.  This is not something that can be purchased and even if pushed, I would not sell the copyright for less than £5000 per image. 

What will you do with the photos of my baby after I have bought them?
Storing photos takes up a lot of memory space and as such I cannot guarantee I will still have copies of your image for longer than 4 months.  I therefore recommend purchasing all the images you like as soon as possible before they are deleted.   With regards to whether I will use copies of the images for marketing purposes,  I will always ask for a signed authority from you as the legal parents/ guardians of your child before using an image.   All images I use on my websites and on social media for advertising purposes and to show potential customers examples of the work I produce, as I did for you, will be anonymous.   As such no names or reference to you or your family or even what town you live in will ever be disclosed.   If you agree for me to use an image on facebook for example and you choose to tag yourself in the photo, that will be 100% your decision, otherwise no-one would ever know who the newborn photo is of.  On social media sites I ensure I put my watermark right over the middle of the image.  

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 Thank you for reading and I cannot wait to meet you before and after your baby is born!  Book here: 

Booking a Studio Shoot – What to expect?

Posted on March 21, 2017 by Michelle under Photo Shoots Q&A
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I can bring my studio to you and set up the studio shoot in the comfort of your own home or you are very welcome to come to my studio.   The ‘set up’ consists of a patterned backdrop (you can choose from over 10 designs) and two studio lights using umbrellas to spread / reflect the light evenly.  Studio lighting is so photographers have control over the light and gives you the professional image you are paying for.

What clothes should the models wear?  If the child is being photographed on their own, you have the freedom to choose colours and styles.  Have an idea who the photos are for; if they will be framed on the wall and if so what your home decor and colour themes are.

For siblings, I would always recommend the same style of clothes but not necessarily the same colours.  So if both boys are wearing shirts, tie and smart trousers, they can be different colours.  But always try and ensure the colours compliment each other.  An example of complimentary colours are ‘autumn’ colours:  browns, beige, green, dark orange, cream.

Bare feet on little ones look very cute in photos and I would suggest bare feet over socks.  Shoes and boots are lovely if clean – the camera will pick up dirty shoes.   Stickers and tattoo transfers would ideally be removed before the shoot as well as distinctive watches, hairbands on wrists etc.  I can help you with this when you arrive.


Once the studio has been set up and you or your little one’s are ready for photos, I will start positioning the model/s.   Sometimes with younger children it is a good idea for mum or dad to sit to the side, ready to leap into action if the model decides to run off or crawl away!    I will turn into a ‘party entertainer’ for the duration of the photo shoot ensuring I capture natural laughing images of your child.

Depending on the photo shoot booked and the age of the child/children, we may have time for a change of outfits, a change of backdrops and change of props.  We will discuss this during the studio shoot but I will fit in as much into the session as I can to give you a complete photo experience and enable your gallery to be full to the brim of a large variety of images.

Safety During a Studio Shoot:  The lights are plugged into electricity and get very hot so safety is always an extremely high priority.  I will tape the leads down to prevent trips and encourage parents to ensure their little ones don’t hold onto, walk into or trip over the light stands.  Please note that the backdrop is attached to a metal stand and taped along the floor.  Young children are often fooled by the patterns thinking it is a solid wall to lean on.  I therefore encourage parents to try and prevent their child leaning on the backdrop as no one wants an accident to happen.


MODEL PORTFOLIO CALL:  If you are attending a MODEL shoot, this is to help me practice new ideas, get images of new backdrops or props, add to my portfolio and create images that can be used on marketing and advertising material.  Such model calls will be a short Mini shoot, (please click this link to my Mini Shoot Blog).  In return for you are giving me authority to use the images for advertising and marketing purposes, the studio shoot will be free, PLUS I will give you a number of images FREE as an added thank you and you have the option to purchase more images from your gallery.

CAKE SMASH:  This studio shoot is so much fun!  How often do we allow our little ones complete access to an entire iced birthday cake?  The images captured are just so lovely as you watch your child get messy with fingers or licking icing off a wooden spoon; grabbing bits of cake and some even going head-first into the icing!   Cake Smash shoots are traditionally for the 1st Birthday however they are just as perfect for 2nd, 3rd and even 21st, 30th or 40th birthdays!!!   Such fun and a great way to remember those precious years.

MINI PHOTO SHOOT:  A mini photo shoot refers to the length of time of the session and is an affordable way to receive professional image.  I will set up a backdrop and book models throughout the day and by not changing the backdrop each time, I am able to reduce the cost of the session.  Full details of what to expect from a Mini Shoot can be found in my blog by clicking this link.


Photo shoots can be a fun crazy noisy time but there are moments when your little one may be tired or just fed up at being photographed.   That’s totally fine and as no one wants a photo of someone upset or crying, we can take a short break and try again in few moments.  Oh and talking of no photos, please do not take photos of any kind during a studio shoot unless we have discussed it beforehand.  Thank you.


I have years of experience photographing children of all ages and to be honest, those parents who say their child never smiles at the camera just makes it a challenge for me to get the shot!  Please read my reviews on my facebook page – I have a knack of getting that smile!     If they won’t smile, should you tell them to or say cheese?   I encourage parents not to mention the word ‘smile’ during the shoot if a child seems to be being stubborn.  I will get there, don’t worry!   Another reason not to ask them to smile is because some children will do a ‘fake’ smile.  I find that the best photos are where the child is laughing or smiling naturally so have faith in my techniques at getting that grin!


You will be given a ‘password card’ which you need to keep safe.   Use the password to gain access to a photo album on my website in the Client Area.   In your album you can browse your images and choose which format you wish to receive them in, such as prints, digital downloads, canvas or on a USB.  Click here for USB orders and details.

If you have any queries about a studio shoot please get in touch.


Mini Photo Shoot

Posted on by Michelle under Photo Shoots Q&A
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Mini Photo Shoot – how does it differ to a normal shoot?

‘Mini’ refers to the length of time of the shoot.  Where I set up an indoor studio mini photo shoot, I put up one backdrop to use for everyone’s shoots thus saving me a great amount of time meaning I am able to reduce the cost of the session.   The mini photo shoot session last approx. 20 mins producing at least 15 images in a variety of poses.

Themed Mini Photo Shoot sessions:   Christmas and Easter means we can have some fun and attempt to include accessories i.e. santa hat, reindeer antlers, bunny ears etc…  I also have a large selection of general accessories /  fancy dress outfits from bow ties, skirts, flower headbands to hats and cute caps.


Where is the studio based?

Chelmsford, Essex, UK.  Parking is on a public road and is free.  The studio is a home-based studio and space is limited to the model/s and a maximum of x2 grownups.

How Many models can attend a mini photo shoot session?

Due to the length of time and my promise to you to create as many beautiful photos as possible, I limit the number of models to x3 siblings per mini photo shoot.    If there are more than three, I strongly recommend that x2 mini photo shoot sessions ‘back to back’.  This will give you the full range of images, however if you wish to stick to the one mini photo shoot that is fine so long as you understand I will only have time to create photos of the whole group.  (With 3 or less children I would photograph them separately as well as together).

One family per mini photo shoot session.   If you are coming with cousins or friends, I am afraid they will need to have booked their own separate mini-shoot but feel free to book them back to back if you wish to  have x1 group photo all together.

If you would rather book a full 45 minute or 1 hour photo shoot instead of a mini photo shoot, please go to the Prices page in my website for full details.   Book here:  Contact Michelle

What Age can the Models Be?

Due to the length of time of the mini photo shoot, the older the child the more images will be taken in the most varied number of poses.  This is purely down to older children being able to pose themselves from verbal instructions.  For the younger children, a parents hand is always helpful to guide them into the best position and to prevent any escapees who may crawl or run off!  For babies that cannot yet sit up independently, I have a variety of props we can use to create the photos.  This will take more time though and will result in less photos being taken in the time available.

Newborn babies – Unless an older sibling is very capable of holding their newborn brother or sister, or the newborn is coming on their own to the shoot, I’m afraid a mini-shoot may not be suitable this time.  Head to my prices page for full details on booking an hour long shoot where we would have more time to pose baby and younger siblings.

Parents can of course be in the photos too – a maximum of x2 parents plus children please due to the space available.  For a larger family photo shoot, please head to the prices page in this website for full details on booking an hour long photo shoot where we would have more options to cater your needs.

Terms & Conditions:

The mini shoots are being held at my home studio and the number of appointments available are limited.  As such I need to ensure models who book their appointment attend.  In the past I have found the best way to ensure this happens is to receive the Session Fee paid in advance & is non-refundable. Contact me for methods of payment.

Occasionally I use images from mini photo shoots as examples of my work to show potential customers on my website or facebook page.   Please confirm in writing if this is not permitted.  No names are used against the images used so no-one will know who the child is.

Please do no take photos during the photo shoot unless you have spoken to me in advance, thank you.

What happens after the mini photo shoot? 

Please give me a minimum of 1 week to edit your images and create the photo albums on my website.

I will provide you with a password so you can gain access to your photo album found on my website in the ‘Client Area’.  Here you will find all the fully edited images from your mini shoot.  Viewing on a phone?  click the image of the shopping cart to view the products. Viewing on a computer or laptop, use the drop down menu below the image to view the products.    All prints and products are processed at a professional printing lab who will deal with your order.   For those of you ordering digital images, these files will be sent to you in an email on the day they are ordered & paid for.  You can then click on the link in the email and save the images to your computer.

Shall I order the physical Print or the Digital File?

All printed images are processed by a professional printing company guaranteeing quality of product, print, colour & clarity.   Once you have the physical image please note that it is against copyright law to take a copy of this image.    If you purchase the digital file, you can make as many copies as you like!   For a Christmas Mini for example, you may choose to create Christmas cards from your images; email images to friends & family and of course upload them onto social media sites.   The options are endless!    However, I cannot be held responsible for the quality of the prints you make from the digital file.

When will I receive my printed products?

The products will arrive within x1 week from the order date, however, for Christmas mini’s, the closer to Christmas that you place your order, this time may be longer.

What to expect during a photo shoot?

I have written a separate BLOG on my website providing even more information.  Please have a quick read and if you have any further questions simply get in touch.



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