A little bit longer at... Bell's at Killcare for Stephen's 70th Birthday

Central Coast Family Photographer

Celebrating family milestones is such a beautiful way of bringing the extended family together. Stephen and his family traveled from all around the country to celebrate his 70th birthday at Bell’s at Killcare. The family matriarch, Stephen’s mother, lives on the central coast. Unfortunately she is no longer able to travel great distances, so the family traveled to her for this big birthday bash.

Stephen’s daughter reached out to me to capture family photographs during the celebrations. These guys were great sports - they did a whole bunch of formal family portraits, indoors. They had planned on having plenty of time outside, enjoying the beautiful grounds at Bells to capture their family photos. Unfortunately, on the day of the party the weather was miserable. Cold. Wet. Yucky. They braved a few minutes on the outdoor veranda, before retreating to the warmth inside.

Stephen’s grandson is a talented pianist, however he does not usually perform in public. At his grandfathers request, he performed a rousing set that had toes tapping and big smiles on faces. The younger cousins wanted to join in the fun, but they haven’t quite yet perfected their performance skills.

bells at killcare
birthday at bells at killcare
party at bells at killcare
bells at killcare function
birthday party at bells at killcare

Best ways to display your family photographs

Family photography central coast

I’m a big believer in printing your images. My house is filled with photographs on our walls and photo albums in every room. My children love curling up on the couch with me and going through our albums. They love to hear the stories behind the images - the family holidays, the birthdays, the adventures we’ve shared. So often the photos will invoke a precious memory - the funny things the kids used to say or do. Our photographs are a testament to the life we are living together.

That’s why I want my clients to print their images too. There is nothing worse than having your precious family photos being wasted sitting in digital storage. Here’s a few ideas for ways to display your photographs.

 

Wall art

I don’t have someone else’s art on my walls - I have the photographic stories of our life. I get so much joy seeing my favourite people everywhere I turn.

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print wall art
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Albums

We LOVE our albums. Sitting together and leafing through these books is like a journey through our year. I have been doing a 365 project for the last couple of years now - that is one photo a day, every day. I’ve documented the big events, starting school, losing teeth and the everyday events, bath time, playing under the sprinkler and climbing trees. These are albums are like gold to me.

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Calendars

Calendar’s are a sweet way to display your photographs. Each year I put one together and give it as a present to our family. It’s a perfect gift for those we love who live far away, it means they still get to see these little faces everyday.

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Don’t be afraid to go cheesy with your images. Coffee mugs and keys rings might be kind of nuff, but honestly, when I’m rushing around on a work day and see my kids smiling faces on my key ring, I get the warm and fuzzies. If it makes you happy - go with it!

Dad friendly photography sessions

documentary family photography sessions central coast



Dads are generally not massive fans of photography sessions. As a rule our poor blokes feel awkward in front of the camera and dread the idea of a bossy photographer asking them to pose in dorky positions and then being told "smile". Yuck.

Fortunately documentary photography sessions with me are as different from this as can be. The whole family is able to relax and be themselves. Here's a few session ideas to get the man in your life keen to be part of a photography session...

 

1. Fishing

Give the man a job to do and he'll be so busy baiting hooks and pulling in fish that he won 't even notice I'm there.

fishing with daddy central coast photographer
 

2. Bush walk

There's something about being in nature that makes everyone feel calm. No need to look into the camera or pose for me.

bushwalk with daddy
 

3. Games afternoon

Get everyone settled in for a games afternoon. Monopoly, scrabble, uno, snap - what ever brings the family together. Let those competitive dads get their game fix

playing monopoly with dad central coast photographer
 

4. Playing outdoors

Get your man busy. Cricket, footy, water pistols… let him and the kids run, play, kick and rumble.

water fight with dad central coast photographer katy allen photograohy-0337.jpg
 

5. Watching the footy on the big screen

"Huh?" I hear you say. How could tv time make for good photos? Actually it makes for great photos. Kids climbing over dad to get his attention. Dad screaming at the tv to help his team. The family in their home, relaxed doing their own thing is always quality. Plus anytime dads encouraged to have a beer during the photo session can only be a good thing. Falling asleep - optional.

watching tv with daddy


Fathers day is just around the corner. if you want get the father figure in your life into the frame, be sure to get in contact


Prousty's 60th Birthday Bash

Central Coast Photographer

Prousty has always been a man that does things his own way. In a time when most families were having less children, he was having more - six to be precise. When everyone else was slaving away at their jobs, Prousty was was taking his Missus and the six kids on year long camping holidays around Australia. So 15 months ago when he received a diagnosis of terminal brain cancer with 90% of suffers succumbing to the disease within 3 to 12 months of diagnosis, Prousty was like “Nup!”.

In true Prousty fashion, he said a big F*** You to Darryl (that’s what he named his tumor) and stubbornly refused to give in to this insidious disease. Through surgeries and treatment, Prousty has continued his bush poetry, hosting gigs around the country. He’s there for every cross country and athletics carnival for the grandkids, with his signature whistle letting the little ones know that Grampy is there watching.

And last week he achieved a feat that seemed impossible 15 months ago - Prousty turned the big 60 and earned himself his senior citizens card. His birthday bash was a big affair at his son Luke’s cafe/restaurant The Tame Fox. Prousty had friends there from high school, work and of course touch footy. Friends and family travelled from all over Australia to celebrate with Prousty. Because Prousty lives big and loves fiercely. And he sets a mighty fine example of how good a marriage and family can be.

Happy birthday Prousty.

kissing couple
central coast event photographer
father and son natural photo
three generations of a family
birthday party photographer central coast

To see more of this hip and happening party click the button below

Short n sweet...with the Cross family

Central Coast Family Photography

It was a blustery winter’s day when I went to the Cross family home for their family photography session. We had planned on being outdoors so their preschooler could be running around, the dog could roam free and we would have lots of options for different backdrops. As it turned out the weather was foul. It was freezing, the wind was howling and the rain kept coming and going. Taryn was a little worried about holding the session in her home - they had renovated part of the house (but not all of it) and weren’t sure if there would be enough variety for photos. I reassured her, even if all they did was snuggle on the couch, we would be able to capture a beautiful gallery of images. Of course with a preschooler in the home, there’s not much chance they’ll sit still for an hour. Taryn made the decision to hold the session in her home - best decision ever!!

Their home was so warm and cosy when I walked in, they were gathered in the living room by the warm fireplace. Her preschooler, Olivia, was happily playing with her favourite toys, so my arrival didn’t disrupt from her game. Baby Lucy was happy on the rug with dad. Everyone was relaxed and warm, doing their own thing.

As was expected, it wasn’t long before Olivia wanted to show me around her home. I got to meet her favourite soft toys, see her Elsa bed, check out the pink bathroom (very 80’s and so cool!) and look at the special corner her mum had arranged so the girls could sit quietly together and read. The girls had a snuggle in the cot together and then a rumble on mum and dad’s bed. Who said there wasn’t much to do during an in-home family photography session?!

cuddles with mum narara photographer
holding hands with daddy
baby photos central coast nsw
baby photos central coast nsw
cuddling mum on the couch

What to wear to a family photography session

I think the number one question my clients ask me is “What should I wear?!”. This is totally normal.

Personally I’m fine with whatever you choose to wear.

Trackies and a bonds singlet? I can roll with it.

Kids in a superhero costume? Sounds like fun!

I get it though. You’ve chosen to have this moment in time captured by a professional photographer, you want your family to look their best. If you’re worrying over how to bring together your wardrobe here’s a few tips I give my clients when choosing their wardrobe…

 


1. Start with You

Let’s be honest. It was probably you who organised this photography session. It will be you who is charge of wrangling small people into cute outfits. It will be you who puts these images onto your walls so you can look back in years to come and smile at how lovely your younger family was on this day. So let’s start by choosing your outfit first. Pick something that you love. An outfit that makes you feel beautiful and confident. That you can move freely in to chase your munchkins and wrap them in huge hugs to give them as much love as you can. Choose something just for you, then build everyone elses outfits around that.

family photography session wardrobe inspiration
 

2. Coordinate colours (but no matchy, matchy!)

Keep your colour palette simple across the outfits. Maybe everyone is in a shade of blue - sky blue, dark blue, navy blue, pastel. Maybe everyone has a coloured item of clothing that ties into together - a pop of mustard or brown tones. Imagine what you will look like together in one frame. Will there be any major clashes? If you’re having trouble imaging what it might look like, try putting your outfit choices laid out on the bed together. Tying in your outfits so that there is a little colour coordination will make for a more visually appealing photograph. But if your family all turn up to the session wearing matching white button down shirts and jean... No. Just no. I will make you skip down the beach holding hands and sit in awkward poses because that’s what you get for turning up to a photo session looking like something out a nineties commerical. You don’t need to be matchy, matchy. Just a little colour coordinated.

baby photographer central coast

  

3. look at the colours in your home

These gorgeous photos will be framed and hung on your walls. So have a look around at home. Are you into bright colours? Neutrals? Let your home decor guide your wardrobe choice so that your photographic artwork matches seamlessly with your home.

family photographer central coast
 

4. ACCESSORIES ARE YOUR FRIEND

Accessories add points of interest to your outfit and are fun to have in photos. There is something so intimate about a little one sitting on mummy’s lap and playing with her necklace. Bracelets on your arm are always a talking point for little girls.

baby hand
 

5. use patterns wisely

I love seeing prints and patterns in families wardrobe choices, but if there’s more than two prints or patterns it can end up getting a bit distracting in the final image. Choose patterns wisely and use them sparingly.

pattern in little girls clothes
 

6. Say no to logos

T-shirts with logos are super distracting in photos. Dad’s wearing surf wear brands with big logos splashed across them or little boys with their favourite Lego or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle t-shirts really aren’t want you want to have in your precious photo session. Keep it plain and simple – save the printed tees for another day.

sunset family beach photos central coast nsw
 

7. Leave the fluro in the 80’s

The fluro phase is slowly passing by again, although I know my daughter still has a few favourite pieces in her wardrobe. Just to be on the safe side, fluro dresses are best saved for disco nights.

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8. avoid all black or all white

If you are wearing an all white shirt it easy to blow out the highlights, losing detail in your shirt. All black can have a similar effect. What does that even mean, I hear you ask? Basically when you and your partner wear all black or all white you end up looking like a double blob, there is no detail, no end of you and beginning of him. In saying this, black or white singlets under jackets or cardigans look great (because less is more). Add a layer and break it up is all I’m asking.

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9. Layers and textures are flattering

Scarves, wraps, cardigans and belts help to flatter your figure and adds interest to the image.

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10. think classic

These photos will be hanging on your walls and treasured for years to come. Choosing simple, classic clothes will help to give your images a timeless feel.

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11. Dress appropriately for the location

Be sure to be true to you and the environment of your photography session. There’s no need to dress up for cocktail hour if you’re having a photography session at the beach. Wear something that makes you feel beautiful, relaxed and comfortable. Jeans and a tee is totally ok.

long jetty family photography



12. Plan ahead

If your daughter desperately wants to wear her best party dress for the session, awesome. That’s one less decision you need to make. BUT - make sure you have it washed and put away hiding in a secret spot a few days in advance. There’s nothing worse than waking up on the morning of the session to find your outfit choices in the dirty clothes pile.

picking flowers in the garden
 

13. Rules are made to be broken

Take everything you read with a grain of salt - it really doesn’t matter if your outfits match, or if someone is wearing fluro, patterns or logos. We’ll still have fun together and make stunning images. So take what you will from this what wear guide. It’s more important that you and your family feel happy in yourselves.

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So that’s my top tips on what to wear to a family photography session. If you want more details about what happens during a session head over to my frequently asked questions page.

An afternoon at Long Jetty with Sticks

Family Photographer Central Coast

This is one of the sessions that was a little bit special. Amy had got in contact as she wanted to do an extended family photography session with four generations of her family together for the afternoon. A chance to bring everyone together to capture time with her nan, Sticks. Only a few short years ago Sticks was an outgoing octogenarian, a committed swimmer and avid walker. Sticks’ health had declined in recent years, much to Sticks’ disgust.

Sticks wasn’t as stable on her feet as she used to be, so walking on sand at the beach wasn’t going to be an option for our photo session. We decided Long Jetty would work as it’s level ground and a short walk from the car for Sticks, with plenty of open space for the grand kids to play.

These guys had come prepared for a picnic with cheese, wine and nibblies. The had games, footies and scooters, so plenty of things to keep everyone happy. The whole afternoon was super relaxed, we did a few posed group photos, then let the kids run wild, exploring the foreshore and the jetty. Sticks is a determined woman and no way was she going to miss out on the action, so she made the journey out to the end of the wharf as well to watch the gorgeous sunset. I hope when I get to her age, I have the same stamina and zest for life, enjoying time with the great grand kids.

It was so good to spend with this awesome tribe.

sunset photography long jetty nsw
holding hands with nan
looking at the water at long jetty
kids playing at long jetty
extended family photography long jetty nsw
cuddles with mum long jetty

short n sweet... with Nelli, Asti and Jelli

Central Coast Family Photographer

This is the third year I have photographed this gorgeous family - from the time Asti was just a bub taking his first steps and Jelli was a big ol’ bump in her mummies tummy - through to now, with these two sweet siblings running wild through the forest and down to the beach. It’s pretty special that we get the chance to do these sessions - these guys now live five hours away, but they always make time each year to catch up for a family photography session with me when they are visiting the Central Coast.

Sunset photography sessions are fraught with danger when you’ve got toddlers and preschoolers, it’s universally accept that this is the meltdown hour, and both the kids had fallen asleep on the car ride over. Lucky for me, they got into the spirit of adventure quickly enough and the promise of ducks to see and dogs to pat was enough to lift them out of their afternoon grumpiness. The chance to watch the birds, throw a few rocks in the water and then get wet themselves made for a great afternoon out. Mum Nelli is an old hand at these sessions, she’d packed towels and snacks so that when they had had enough of the water and were cold and hungry, she was ready to refuel their tired little bodies.

The sunset was sublime, making for more beautifully memories to add to their yearly family album.

kisses with mummy macmasters beach nsw
playing in the lake  cochrone lagoon copacabana
sweet little girl portrait
sunset swims copacabana beach
watching the ducks copacabana

Mother's Day 2019 - Part Two

Central Coast Family Photographer

Continuing on from my previous post with some more of the beautiful mums I have photographed over the last 12 months.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Sam and baby Sienna

newborn baby photos avoca beach

Sam and Sienna spent a cool autumn morning snuggled up indoors for their newborn photography session. To see more of their session click here.


Kieran and Sienna

newborn baby girl

Snuggles were the order of the day for newborn baby Sienna. She was happy with mum, dad or her older siblings, anyone who wanted to give her love was alright by Sienna. To see more of her newborn photos click here.


Sal, Lachie and Eddie

sunset beach photos avoca beach

Super mum Sal was game for anything her boys wanted to do during their family photos. Sal was even climbing trees in this gorgeous dress. Nothing was too hard for her. To see more of their fun session click here.


Rach’s maternity session

comparing baby bumps

There was lots going on with Rach’s three older kids during her maternity session - everyone wanted to be snuggled close to mum. I think Nellie showing me her baby bump might be my favourite one of all. To see more of this beautiful family click here.


Dionne, Lee, Leni and Xavi

laughing kids

A brand new block for their brand new house - documenting the journey of this family was gorgeous as they enjoyed the beginning of many new adventures. To see more of their family photography session click here.


Rach and teagan

breastfeeding photographer central coast

This was a beautiful, quiet session with just mumma and bubba home together. To see more of their newborn session click here.


Lauren and keelan

newborn baby boy

Lauren and Keelan were kept company throughout our session by their two gorgeous hounds. To see more of their newborn photography session click here.


Aimee and newborn baby george

newborn baby boy cuddling with mum

Little George and his amazing hair had my heart - there’s nothing quite like the soft downy hair of a newborn. To see more of their session click here.


Lauren and remi

mum cuddling with baby

Newborn baby Remi was so quiet and placid, it was beautiful to capture some quiet time between mum and bub. Pretty sure her big sister Ava was jumping on the bed behind while I took this shot. To see more of their newborn photography session click here.


Cat and Marissa

little girl holding hands with mum

Little Marissa was so exuberant and outgoing. She was keen to show me the nursery for the baby that was on the way. to show me her room, to show me the backyard. But when she had a fall and hurt herself, all she wanted was to be close by her mummy’s side. To see more of their session click here.


Liz and Leni

kissing baby in mummy’s tummy

Leni was all dressed up in her special dress for her mummy’s maternity photos, but when I arrived she decided it was time to wear her Little Red Riding Hood dress instead. Lucky for me mum Liz and dad Dean are super laid back and let Leni take the lead. She rocked that dress all day. To see more of their session click here.


Alexandra and Jack

baby bump photo

Jack was your typical little dynamo - keen to get out and run amok. Mum Alex set aside a time for some gorgeous indoor maternity photos before heading to the lake for paddle boarding. To see more of this session click here.


Liz, Dean and Newborn Baby Henry

newborn baby with mum and dad

Hanging out with this cruisy family is always fun. Newborn baby Henry was happy cuddling up with his mumma. To see more of their session click here.


Rachel and theo

little boy cuddling with mum

Cuddles with mum are always the best and I am so in love with Theo’s hair. To see more of their session click here.


nanny cuddles

Nanny Carol was given a photography session as a Christmas present and made sure her grandson Khan was there to be part of the fun. To see more of their session click here.


Leanne and Amelia

teenage girl and mum

This family had a gorgeous afternoon on their amazing new property. To see more of their session click here.


So that’s my wrap up of a year of photographing some amazing mum’s.

Want to buy a photography gift voucher for your mum?

You can download it from my website now.

Mother's Day 2019

Central Coast Family Photographer


To celebrate Mother’s Day 2019, I’ve put together a collection of some my favourite mummy photos from the last 12 months. This is part 1 - there will be another blog post to follow (I can’t narrow it down - I love all these images!!).

Here’s to all the beautiful women in our lives.

Happy Mother’s Day!

 

Melissa and baby Lexi

baby photos central coast

The Francis family were given a gift voucher for their photography session and rather than do it when Lexi was a newborn, they chose to wait until she was 10 months old and so freaking cute!! To see more of their session click here.


Tara and baby Charlie Rose

breastfeeding photography

This beautiful mum was taking everything in her stride during our photography session together - broken sleep and a fussy newborn didn’t worry Tara at all. To see more of their session click here.


Ashley and baby Sonny

baby photographer central coast

This is a beautiful quiet moment between Ashley and Sonny. I can guarantee you that just out of camera is big brother Finn who was waxing lyrical about all things philosophical. He was an absolute crack up! To see more of their session click here.


Jo, Matt and Jack

maternity photographer central coast

Jo was absolutely glowing for her maternity photography session. She was more than happy to go bushwalking with her little family to get some gorgeous images. TO see more of her session click here.


Kate, adam and khan

newborn baby photographer terrigal

Kate and Adam were living overseas when Khan was born, so a newborn photography gift voucher was the perfect present for them when they came back to Australia for a visit. To see more of their session click here.


Zena and Family

teenage photographer central coast

Zena was watching her adult children prepare to leave home and so decided to book in a photography session before she had an empty nest. This gorgeous family had a great afternoon hanging at home and at the beach. To see more of their session click here.


If you want to buy a photography gift certificate for Mother’s Day click on the button below.