Aneira, Simon & Willow - Hitchin Family Session

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This shoot was a really special one…the first of a run of three I did back in January and February time while I was heavily pregnant with baby Eilidh. They would be my last before maternity leave, as I was getting really big with a heavy baby and I was struggling a lot to move around. I mean, I still managed to climb on things and run after kids while I was shooting, but oh boy did I sweat like hell while I did it and hurt like hell when I got home. Pregnancy is a funny time, and for all it takes away from you in terms of physical energy (in the first and last trimesters at least) my experience has been that it has filled me with creative energy and spirit unlike any other time in my life. Something about the cocktail of hormones and emotions makes me connect on an even deeper level with the images I am making, both while I have a camera in my hand and while I’m staring at my editing screen. It’s weird, and wonderful…everything heightened, everything more fleeting.

Aneira, Simon and Willow were so cool, calm and relaxed during our session. They really got on board with what I was trying to capture, put their trust in me and let the session ebb and flow naturally and effortlessly. I consider it a real gift when people, especially families with very young babies, let me in to their homes and their lives at such a special time. It’s pretty intimate, and it’s not always easy to let your guard down in front of a total stranger, let alone to trust them to put a camera all up in your business and come away with something that really feels like you. Like you’ve been seen. But that’s always what I am striving for. True human connection, both in the way that I interact with people and in what I draw out of them through my photographs. I want them to feel something in that moment, and to feel it all over again when they look at the images.

Re-visiting this session after ten months has been such a delight for me. A reminder of a good-for-the-soul kind of morning with a beautiful family, who have since become friends, and a reminder of so many photographs I near forgot I even took. I think there are few things more special as a photographer than when you’re in sync with the people you’re photographing. You’re all working together, as one, creating something together. That’s the magic.

Thank you, Aneira, Simon and Willow for having me. I hope your photos make you as feel as happy as they make me.