Client Work (3 Family Shoots 1 Day part 1) - Pippa, Dave & Sky

Back in Feb this year I had 3 family shoots in studio in one day.  This is the first of those shoots with Pippa, Dave & Sky who is one of the cutest little girls you will ever meet.

When working in a studio with lights, stands & backgrounds it can be a bit daunting for the children involved so I usually start slow and simple and make a point of arriving in studio 1-2 hours before start to prep the space and make it as safe as possible.  I also use this time to get my head in the mode of shooting.

Have to say Pippa, Dave & especially Sky were great and we all had allot of fun on the day.

We stuck to the white seamless set up for most of the shoot because it works, its simple and it’s clean.  3 Lights, white paper background and a few pieces of white board are all that’s needed.  Ok on to some images from the shoot.

I love this image above of Sky and her Dad, she is trying to figure out the white boards and the set.  Always have your exposure roughed in ready for when the client steps on set, that way you can catch moments like this and have good or very close exposure.

Whole family on set now and Sky looks at her shoes… Cracks me up.  The reflection is made possible by using the white board, I wont shoot full length white seamless with out it.. so much so I bought it for the local studio I use.

As the shoot progresses everyone (including myself becomes more comfortable) and we start to get some great images and moments.  Moments.. that’s the most important thing… not the gear.

The next few frames were not shot on the white seamless set, make sure you have some breaks now and again to change it up and keep it interesting for the child but be aware of your ambient light (windows light in this case) so you can dial in exposure and capture some candid shots.

Back on the seamless set for a few shots of Sky and her Toys.

Sky the budding photographer, taking after her Mum Pippa.

Girls got to look her best whilst photographing.

Yeah this is what happens when you knock you mode dial to bulb mode, Sky looks as impressed as I was.

Sometimes your subjects/client just fall in to something and it works.

Sometime I hand the camera to the child (with my help.. 5D2, grip and lens is heavy) and let them shoot some frames.  The next 3 images are courtesy of Sky,

Then Sky found the hats.  Let me explain.. the owner of the studio I use is a stage / theatre actor and has a few props and hats around which means it’s not uncommon for the kids to find them.

At first the hat was a drum, makes sense I can see that.

Then is was time to try it on.. this is where it went a bit wrong….

This always gets me laughing when I see it. 

Thank you Pippa, Dave & Sky for making it a fun and easy shoot.  Also thank you to Ians Studio for providing the studio space.

Thank you for reading.

Book A Shoot Here ]
Sign Up To My Newsletter ]

Location Shoot: Sarah Mansfield…Castlefield Manchester

This shoot is from back in July 2012.

Sarah Mansfield ...

I first met Sarah at an event at a local Studio I ended up teaching on (was planning to just shoot but ended up taking one group)  and instantly realised she had a great personality for modelling and in general.  A shoot was arranged for the following Monday in Castlefield, Manchester UK.

Castlefield is a well known part of Manchester and hold great potential for location work, I must revisit it.

With travelling in by Train I decided to travel light (for me) along side my good friend Mark Boadey, we had arranged a joint shoot.   Having not visited Castlefield for a number of years I was looking forward to seeing what I could find.

This shoot was the one I made my mind up to finally go Full Frame.  I borrowed a 5D2 from a good friend Kevin Pack and never looked back.. anyway.

The images shown below are some of my favourites from the shoot.

The first frame was a simple head shot, I start with head shots quite often to warm up to the shoot.. how ever getting up close for a head shot might not suite all subjects as a starting point. This image was taken using great open shade with a bright sunny blue sky, I love open shade almost as much as I like direct sun/hardlight… almost Smile

#1  Canon 5D2, Canon 85 F1.8 , Natural Light – 1/250th sec, F2.8 ISO125

Sarah Mansfield ...

The next frame was a full length shot, whilst not over all a favourite.. it could of been framed tighter! I still like it because of Sarah's expression and reaction to what ever I said (can’t remember), I also like how the top echos the shape of the arms in the pose.

#2 – Canon 5D2, Canon 85 F1.8 – Natural Light - 1/320sec, F1.8, ISO125

Sarah Mansfield ...

Next was a few head and shoulder shots, I love the eye contact and the background works well with Sarah’s hair colour and of course the smile in the second one.

#3 – Canon 5D2, Canon 85 F1.8, – Natural Light - 1/160sec, F4, ISO 400

Sarah Mansfield ...

#4 - Canon 5D2, Canon 85 F1.8, – Natural Light - 1/160sec, F4, ISO 400

Sarah Mansfield ...

Now its time for something more dramatic and wide angle, I love my 35 F2 lens but so far had only use it on a APS-C DSLR.. now on the 5D2 it was a real wide angle… play time.

The rail bridge that travel over the Canal hides some great locations and bridge structures, the next series of images were made around that area.

#5  - Canon 5D2, Canon 35 F2 – Natural Light & Flash – 1/200th sec, F11, ISO100, Flash 1/4 Power ish.  Thanks to Mark Boadey VAL duties.  1:1 crop in post.

Sarah Mansfield ...
#6 - Canon 5D2, Canon 35 F2 – Natural Light & Flash – 1/200th sec, F11, ISO100, Flash 1/4 Power ish – Some of the shadow shapes in this are created by shooting through a bridge barrier.

Sarah Mansfield ...

#7 Canon 5D2, Canon 35 F2 – Natural Light & Flash – 1/200th sec, F11, ISO100, Flash 1/4 Power ish

Sarah Mansfield ...

#8 Canon 5D2, Canon 35 F2 – Natural Light & Flash – 1/80h sec, F5, ISO100

Sarah Mansfield ...

Time for something lighter and warmer.

#9 - Canon 5D2, Canon 50 F1.8 II – Natural Light & Flash – 1/200th sec, F3.5, ISO400, Flash 1/8th Power ish with CTO Gel.  Just a small tree and a man made sun.

Sarah Mansfield ...

Now a little more dramatic with Grids.  Love these things.

#10 - Canon 5D2, Canon 50 F1.8 II – Natural Light & Mostly Flash – 1/200th sec, F8, ISO200 – Flash with 1/4 Grid at 1/2 Power ish. 1:! crop in post

Sarah Mansfield ...

#11 - Canon 5D2, Canon 35 F2 – a Natural Little & Flash – 1/200th sec, F8, ISO100, Flash 1/2Power ish with 1/4 grid.  - The grid keeps the flash off the wall.

You can see a video of my edit of this image here

Sarah Mansfield ...

#12 - Canon 5D2, Canon 50 F1.8 II – Natural Light – 1/400thsec, F5.6, ISO640 – A Bit of fun during last light. Never understood people who try to get rid of shadows in any photograph, they create shape/ depth.

Sarah Mansfield ...

#13 - Canon 5D2, Canon 50 F1.8 II, – Natural Light - 1/640thsec, F1.8, ISO640

Sarah Mansfield ...

#14 - Canon 5D2, Canon 50 F1.8 II, – Natural Light - 1/500th sec, F1.8, ISO640

Always keep your camera ready incase your Model decides to go climbing.
 Sarah Mansfield ...

We wrapped the day off with some good food and a few drinks.


Thank you Sarah for an enjoyable shoot, look forward to working with you again.


Personal Work – In Studio – Model: Alana Elliot

Alana Elliot...


This shoot took place a little while ago back in January this year.  I had the luxury of looking after and running a friends Studio (Ians Studio)whilst he was away on holiday, in-between running some events at the studio I booked a model along with Mark (newtophoto co-host) and had a day in the studio working on some personal work for my portfolio.

You can find out more about Alana on the links below.

Her blog - 

Her Model Mayhem - 

Alana’s communications pre shoot were great, and she was amazing to work with, professional, great range of poses and expressions and was able to connect with the camera  (you could feel it) and nail the shots.  I will be working with here again soon, thank you Alana :)

Below are some more of my favourite images from the shoot, some of which are in my galleries on this site. All images shot using the Canon 500D, 50 F1.8 or 24-105 F4L, but remember the gear does not matter.. what ever you have go shoot.

#1 (By the way this was taken at ISO400, perfectly clean in good light) Don’t be afraid of increasing the ISO, it can help shoot faster with flash as a lower power is needed.

Alana Elliot...









#2 , #3

Alana Elliot...Alana Elliot...

#4, #5

Alana Elliot...Alana Elliot...


#6,  After the softer images above I went for something harder and more dramatic using hard light.  30’ Grid

Alana Elliot...








#7 , #8


Alana Elliot...Alana Elliot...

Love these images, especially number 1 in fact its been printed and I am in the process of finding a frame I like.

Thank You