Clare Murthy 2017: Blog http://www.claremurthy.com/blog en-us (C) Clare Murthy 2017 clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) Fri, 13 Oct 2017 11:06:00 GMT Fri, 13 Oct 2017 11:06:00 GMT When Should I Book My Photo Shoot? http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/when-should-i-book-my-photo-shoot Welcome back to the latest post in this series where I'm answering your frequently asked questions. In this post I'll be focussing on the best time to book your photo shoot. This really will vary depending on the kind of shoot you are after, so here's an overview for each of my different services:

Newborn Sessions

Newborn sessions take place during the first two weeks of your baby's life - they're usually still in that lovely curled up position and nice and sleepy which makes for great photographs. But, because we usually don't know exactly when the baby will be born it's not possible to set a firm date for the session until they arrive.

To work around this I schedule a tentative date for newborn sessions with my clients, and then we confirm or move it when their baby arrives. To make sure I've got enough flexibility in my diary to do this I take on a very limited number of sessions each month and recommend that expecting parents book their session at 20 weeks - once they've had their scan. At this stage they can secure their slot in my diary, and we can set a firm date once their baby arrives.

You can see an example of a newborn session here

Maternity Sessions

The best time for a photo shoot during pregnancy is between 30-36 weeks. Usually at this time bumps are nice and round, and the pregnancy hasn't become too tiring. Similarly to a newborn session I recommend getting in touch to book your shoot once you've had your 20 week scan. This gives us plenty of time to plan the location and style of the shoot together to make sure it's tailored to you.

You can see an example of a maternity session here

Family Sessions

Family sessions are much more flexible on timing than maternity or newborn sessions, and most of the time when we schedule it for comes down to the time of year you would prefer to have it. We spend at least part of the shoot outdoors for most of my family sessions and every season is beautiful for different reasons - if you need a little bit of help deciding which season you'd prefer to have as the backdrop to your photographs let me know and we can discuss the different options.

Generally speaking, if you'd like to have your session on a weekend you will need to book a bit further in advance than if you want it on a weekday. For weekend sessions I recommend booking at least 4 weeks ahead. On weekdays my diary tends to be more flexible. It's quite common for families to have a specific date in mind for a shoot - for example if they want to have it on a special birthday or have relatives visiting on that date and would like to have photographs together. In this case I recommend booking even earlier.

One thing to consider when booking your session is that it's also a good idea to give yourself time to plan for the shoot - some families like to schedule haircuts in a couple of weeks beforehand, and you'll also need some time to decide what everyone will wear. Booking a little further ahead can give you the time to do this.

Finally, if you have a baby in the family there are some ages and stages that work better for photographs than others. You can find out more about the best age to have baby photos taken here.

See an example of a family session here.

 

Over to You

I hope you find this guide helpful as you are planning your shoot. What other questions do you have about booking a photo shoot? I'd love to hear - get in touch with me here.

 

Find the answers to more frequently asked questions here.

 

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) faqs http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/when-should-i-book-my-photo-shoot Wed, 18 Oct 2017 05:00:00 GMT
Surrey Maternity Photographer http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/maternity-photographer-surrey Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Bushy ParkMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Bushy Park

I'm excited to share this Autumn maternity session with you today. I'm a big believer that maternity photography doesn't always have to be about bare bumps in the studio (although that can be beautiful too.) It can also be about capturing precious memories, places, the beauty of your bump and the story of your life before your baby arrived. I met Jo in Bushy Park for her maternity photo shoot earlier this month. When we arrived we realised it it was deer rutting season, which we could hear the male deer roaring across the park - it's quite something to witness!

Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in HamptonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in HamptonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Hampton Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in TeddingtonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in TeddingtonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Teddington Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon Thames

There's always plenty of time for an outfit change during maternity sessions, and one of the items Jo brought along with her was this dress from Ankoa (pictured below.) Ankoa isn't actually a maternity brand, but I thought the style of the dress worked perfectly both as a maternity dress and for our shoot together. 

Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Kingston Upon Thames Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Richmond Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Richmond Upon ThamesMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in Richmond Upon Thames Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in East MoleseyMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in East MoleseyMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography in East Molesey Maternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography near Thames DittonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography near Thames DittonMaternity Photographer Surrey - Maternity Photography near Thames Ditton

I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of the highlights from my shoot with Jo. I'll be launching details of my maternity sessions next week - if you'd like to be amongst the first to be notified when they launch drop me a note here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) maternity photographer photography surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/maternity-photographer-surrey Mon, 16 Oct 2017 05:00:00 GMT
What's a Planning Consultation? http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/whats-a-planning-consultation What's a planning consultationWhat's a planning consultationWhat's a planning consultation Today I'm continuing my series of blog posts that answer frequently asked questions, and am talking all about planning consultations - what they are, what they involve, and how they can help you walk away with photographs you love.

In short a planning consultation is just a conversation between you and I that takes place before the shoot. It can be on the phone or over Skype - whichever you would prefer, and generally lasts around 20-30 minutes. We'll usually schedule it when you make your booking, Every one of these conversations I have is different, because every family is different but there are a few topics that we'll cover every time. Read on to find out more about these.

 

What's Important to Your Family

Whenever I meet a family for a photography session, it's really important to me that I get to know them and find out what makes them 'them.' I love the fact that each family's photo shoot can include a little of their personality and character. For most families investing in a photography session isn't something you do on a regular basis so being able to capture the things that are important to you right now helps to preserve the memory of this time.

So what kind of 'important memories' do families include in a session? Here are some examples of special moments and milestones I've captured in sessions recently:

In newborn sessions families have brought along a special blanket from grandma, special cuddly toys and some thank you gifts that one mum had made.

In a recent maternity session my client chose her London neighbourhood as the location for her shoot, so that she could include a piece of her life before children 

In one family session this Spring the youngest family member was just learning to walk so her parents brought along her walker so we could capture this special milestone. In other sessions recently families have chosen to include bicycles, musical instruments, football and rugby balls, books and even a trip to a favourite ice cream stand.

What's a planning consultationWhat's a planning consultationWhat's a planning consultation

Location

For newborn sessions the question of location is easy - they take place at my in-home studio in East Molesey. But for family and maternity sessions we have lots of options. Some families choose to have their session at home, some in an outdoor location, and some will split the time between both. When we speak on the phone this is one of the things we'll discuss. 

I always like to find out whether there are any locations that are meaningful to your family - if so you may like to take the photographs there. I can also make suggestions of lovely locations around Surrey and South West London and which might suit your family best, and during this conversation we'll usually agree a location for the shoot.

If you have a baby I may suggest that we spend some or all of the session at your home. Find out more about shoots with babies here.

What To Wear

Top of most mums' list when we have the planning consultation is to chat about what everyone will wear. When you book your session I'll send you my digital guide, which includes lots of guidance on choosing what everyone wears, but the planning consultation gives us plenty of time to talk through options and for you to ask any questions about outfits before the shoot.

You can read more about what to wear for an outdoor photo shoot here.

 

Your Questions

The planning consultation is also a great opportunity for you to ask any other questions that you have about the shoot, how to prepare, or what to expect afterwards. I always want you to feel well prepared and relaxed for your session so encourage you to ask as many as you would like! And if you think of any other questions after the call, you can always get in touch to ask me at a later time.

 

Over to you

I hope this gives you a good overview of what to expect from a planning consultation. What other questions do you have? I'd love to hear - you can drop me a note and let me know here.

 

Find the answers to more frequently asked questions here.

 

 

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) faqs http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/whats-a-planning-consultation Wed, 11 Oct 2017 05:00:00 GMT
Mama You Can - Sharing my Story with Surrey Mama http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/mama-you-can-surrey-mama Mama You Can Surrey MamaMama You Can Surrey Mama

Last week I had the privilege of sharing my business story with Sarah over at Surrey Mama. Every Thursday Sarah shares an interview on her blog with a mum who has changed career direction, started their own business or negotiated a more flexible role to fit in with family life. I've loved reading all the other mums' stories in the series, and so it was a real pleasure to be able to share my story there too. You can find the whole 'Mama You Can' series including my interview here.

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) personal press http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/mama-you-can-surrey-mama Mon, 09 Oct 2017 13:42:39 GMT
How to Decorate with Photos - Tips and Tricks from an Interior Designer http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-decorate-with-photos how to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photographyhow to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photographyhow to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photography

I'm excited to share this guest post from Interior Designer Fiona Brass today. Having photos on display at home can bring such joy, but sometimes it's difficult to know where to display them and how. In this post Fiona answers those questions with lots of ideas for decorating your home with photos. Over to Fiona...  

 

“What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce”

Karl Lagerfeld was onto something with this quote. These moments are priceless and are bespoke to each one of us. They make us smile when we think about them and give comfort when called upon.

So, with that in mind I want to talk about decorating your home with photos, adorning your walls and spaces with memories and snapshots of your family, moments shared together. In this post, I will share with you how to decorate with photographs and, of course, making sure the whole thing is styled beautifully!

 

Built to last…and grow

One of the most popular ways to show case photos in your home is by using a gallery wall.

These walls of photos can take on a formal appearance – think one size, thin steel frames, black and white photos all hung in a very distinct grid. Habitat has a superb collection of steel frames to choose fromUsing a laser level will help you achieve perfect alignment when hanging these photographs.

how to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photographyhow to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photographyhow to decorate with photos | Clare Murthy Photography

Picture walls can also be playful and fun. This can be achieved using a collection of various frames and colours with a more haphazard layout (a well planned out haphazard layout!).

When looking to realise a more relaxed feeling for these walls, use chunky wooden frames. Antique frames can also give these art displays a bespoke touch. Colour is welcome in these displays but consider the tones you use, try to avoid conflicting or clashing colours.

When having any professional photographs taken, it is always advisable to make the photographer aware at an early stage of specific colours and tones you would like to achieve for your gallery wall.

One last thing to remember when planning a gallery wall, if possible, include space for future memories to join the past ones. Think of it as an open family album, something that when you walk by it makes you and your guests smile fondly!

Find Clare's guide to creating a gallery wall here.

 

Style around the photos

Picture ledges have been around for a long time but have recently seen resurgence in popularity. By mixing some pictures on these mantles with other special items they can create a really beautiful vignette.

The allure of the picture ledge is that you can chop and change the style as and when you please. There are no nails in the wall holding your frames up and also you can play around with a variety of frame heights and accessories to compliment your photos depending on the occasion. A beautifully framed Christmas card can cost very little and have a wonderful seasonal effect sitting on these ledges alongside other styled items for the event.

These sills come in all shapes and sizes so consider what else you want to add to your shelf before choosing the width and depth. Ikea’s RIBBA Range is a simple ledge that offers a variety of colours and lengths but if you want something a little more special, consider employing a carpenter to build a bespoke ledge to your exact requirements. Your “made to measure” ledge can be painted the same colour as your wall so it just blends into the background providing a perfect space for your photographs and other treasured possessions.

You can find lots of picture ledge inspiration over on Pinterest:

 

 

Only one

One very special photograph that is…it might be a portrait or perhaps an abstract photograph. But this is the one picture that evokes a myriad of feelings when you look at it, one that is too special to sit within a gallery wall or ledge.

Supersize it to at least 50cm x 70cm and bestow on it a very special location fitting to the photograph.

Consider bespoke framing and mount and even a picture light to sit above this beauty. Yes this is a financial investment but trust me if you happen to have one of these important photographs look after it. It’s an important memory that is to be cherished and you won’t regret the investment in the long run.

Consider hanging this photograph on a dark painted wall as the impact will be even more striking!

 

Wired Up

Wire picture frames are a fantastic idea for transient smaller photos that you want to cherish right now and perhaps replace with another in a few months.

They are a superb way of capturing a child’s first year, family occasions or even a holiday. They range in size and shape. Maison Du Monde do a great range of frames that are on trend in copper and bronze at a reasonable price point.

How to decorate with photosHow to decorate with photosHow to decorate with photos

Clever tricks

Finally, if you are running tight on a budget but want a clever option to display your cherished photos look no further than the myriad of washi tape available on the market. Washi tape is a type of masking tape that comes in pretty colours and designs so will add to the overall display of your photographs. Most cost about £1.50 per roll so it’s guaranteed not to break the bank.

If you’re renting or are reluctant to make any marks in the wall, one trick stylists and interior designers use is Command Strips for hanging artwork. These clever things adhere to the wall to hold your frames in place and can be removed seamlessly when you move out or just want to change the location of your artwork. You will find a variety of options depending on the size and weight of your frame.

 

Over to you

I hope you've found all of Fiona's tips helpful - there were quite a few I hadn't thought of before. What about you? Let us know how you got on in the comments below.

 

Find more photography tips for parents here.

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) photography tips for parents http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-decorate-with-photos Wed, 04 Oct 2017 05:00:00 GMT
How to Take Great Photographs of Your Children at the Pumpkin Patch http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-take-photographs-children-pumpkin-patch How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

Autumn seems to have arrived very quickly this year, and before we know it it'll be Halloween. Going to a farm to choose your pumpkin has become really popular in recent years, and it's also a lovely opportunity for photographs. But did you know that simple things like the clothes your child is wearing, or the time of day you visit can make a difference to the overall feel of the photographs? Read on for five tips for great photographs of your children at the pumpkin patch.

How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

1. Choose the right colour clothes for your trip to the pumpkin patch

It might seem a bit excessive to plan the colour of your child's clothes so that they coordinate with the location, but the fact is that the right colour clothes can make a really positive difference to your photographs.

There are no set 'rules' for what your children wear to the pumpkin patch, but some colours will complement the surroundings better than others. I recommend starting off by thinking about the colours at your location, and then about which colours will complement them. Generally speaking, most pumpkin patches will be a combination of orange, and soft browns and greens and I find that autumnal colours complement these tones well. Here are some colours that you could include in your child's outfit:

 

How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

The other important thing to note is that you don't need to include all of these colours in your child's outfit! In fact, just choosing two or three colours is much better. If you have more than one child I suggest choosing a maximum of three or four colours for the whole family to wear. This guide to dressing your family for outdoor photographs explains more.

 

2. Visit the pumpkin patch early in the morning, or late afternoon

The obvious benefit of being the first or last people at the pumpkin patch is that you'll hopefully have the place to yourself, and won't have to worry about lots of other people appearing in the background of your photographs. But the bigger benefit is that you'll have better light. In most pumpkin fields you'll only have shade at the edges, and that's only if it's surrounded by tall trees or bushes. Visit in the middle of the day, and you may end up with a lot of bright, direct sunlight which can result in lots of shadows and contrast. At the beginning and end of the day you should avoid direct sunlight, and your photographs will have a much softer feel. You can see this in the photograph below which I took very late in the afternoon.

How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

3. Sit back and let your children explore

Once you're in a lovely location it can be tempting to immediately try and get your children to sit still for a nice photo. But as most parents will find, this is the last thing the children want to do! Let your children spend some time exploring and deciding which pumpkin they want to take home. This is a lovely opportunity to take some candid photographs of them, and once they've chosen 'the one' it will be much easier to keep them in one place! 

 

4. Get down low

Once you do start taking photographs be sure to get down to your child's level. You'll have a much more natural perspective and will also be able to capture much more of their surroundings than if you are standing up and pointing your camera downwards towards them.

How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

5. Capture the whole process

Keep your camera out through the whole trip, and you'll also be able to capture the different stages your child goes through - from exploring the field, to selecting their pumpkin and (depending on how big they are) picking it up.

How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch How to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin PatchHow to take great photographs of your children at the Pumpkin Patch

Over to you

I'd love to hear how you get on using these tips when you visit the pumpkin patch this year. Let me know in the comments below.

 

Find more photography tips for parents here.

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) photography tips for parents http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/10/how-to-take-photographs-children-pumpkin-patch Mon, 02 Oct 2017 05:00:00 GMT
How Do We Decide What To Order After Our Session? http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/how-do-we-decide-what-to-order-after-our-session One of the most common questions I'm asked before a client books a session with me is "do I need to decide what to order now?" The short answer is most definitely not, and I thought it would be helpful to tell you everything you need to know about ordering your photographs (i.e. the long answer) in this blog post. 

 

What happens before my session?

When you book your session, paying your session fee secures the date. This session fee includes: a planning consultation with me (usually on the phone), my digital session guide which covers everything you need to know to prepare for your session, the photography session itself and an online proofing gallery where you can view your fully-edited photographs and make purchases.

The session fee doesn't include any printed products or digital files - you can purchase these after you've seen your proofing gallery, but when you book I'll also send you my product guide so that you can see all of the products available to order.

 

 

What happens after my session?

Within two weeks of your session I'll send you a link to a private, online proofing gallery where you can view the fully edited images from your session. The reason that I do this, rather than invite you to a viewing and ordering appointment is to give you time to view the images, and think about how you want to enjoy them. I know I wouldn't want to make my decisions in a couple of hours and I don't want you to feel that pressure either.

Your gallery will stay open for 7 days, and during that time I can be as hands on or hands off as you like. If you feel you need a little help to decide I can make suggestions - for example which photographs would work well grouped together as a gallery wall, or within a storyboard frame. Thanks to some wonderful modern technology I can also show you how different frames, and frame sizes would appear on a particular wall in your home, or mock up frame or album layouts. Alternatively, you may want me to stay out of it completely!

Once you've decided what you would like to order, I'll confirm all the details with you and then send you an invoice for your items. Then you can sit back and relax! Your products will be delivered to you within 4-6 weeks of payment being received.

 

 

Can we see the product guide before we book our session?

Absolutely - I strive to be completely transparent about pricing. I hate the thought of anyone having a session with me and not knowing what the prices were. You can view all of the products in my range, and the prices here.

 

Can we see the products in person?

You can. I have samples of all of the products available to order - if you'd like to see them before, during or after your session just let me know and I'll make the arrangements.

 

 

How much should we budget to spend?

To give you a guide most of my clients spend between £600-£2,000 in total, including their session fees. What you spend is entirely up to you, and there definitely won't be anyone pushing you to buy one thing or another. I do recommend making sure that you're familiar with all the prices before booking so that you don't find that the things you want are out of budget afterwards.

 

I want to order more but my budget doesn't cover everything I want. Can I order some more products at a later date? 

Absolutely. When you book your session, the product prices will be valid until 28 days after your session. You can still order additional items after this time, and I'll send you the latest product and price list at this point so that you can choose your items.

 

Over to you

I hope this guide is helpful in explaining the ordering process and answering some frequently asked questions. What other questions do you have? I'd love to hear. You can get in touch with me here.

 

Find the answers to more frequently asked questions here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) faqs http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/how-do-we-decide-what-to-order-after-our-session Thu, 28 Sep 2017 05:00:00 GMT
Family Photography in Teddington http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/family-photography-teddington Family Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy Photography

We had a wonderful summers morning for this family photography session in Bushy Park last month - not too hot, and rain-free! I was due to photograph this family a month before - and we did start the session but unfortunately their daughter wasn't well so we decided to reschedule until she was better. I think this was definitely the right choice - she was happy, chatty and into everything when we did meet again which was exactly what we hoped!

I always like to keep family sessions moving fairly quickly - it keeps things interesting and enjoyable for everyone, but children in particular. During this session we explored lots of the park which gave us lots of different backdrops. I've put together a little selection of my favourites from this shoot - I hope you enjoy them!

Family Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy Photography Family Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy Photography Family Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy Photography Family Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography in Teddington | Clare Murthy Photography

I hope you enjoyed these photographs. You can see more from my family sessions here, and read about pricing here

I am a newborn, baby and family photographer based in East Molesey close to Hampton Court. I cover Surrey and  South West London, including Esher, East and West Molesey, Thames Ditton, Cobham, Weybridge, Haselmere, Farnnham, Frensham, Virginia Water, Teddington, Richmond, Kew, Chiswick, Twickenham, Chelsea, Fulham, Putney, Wandsworth, Wimbledon. 

Contact me to check availability or book your session.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) bushy park families family photographer photography surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/family-photography-teddington Mon, 25 Sep 2017 05:00:00 GMT
What to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo Shoot http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/what-wear-autumn-family-photo-shoot What to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo Shoot I know that deciding what everyone is going to be wear is one of the things my clients spend the most time thinking about before a family photo shoot. After all, the photographs are an investment in recording your family's history and you want to be sure that everyone looks their best. The good news about having a photo shoot during the autumn is that almost any colour will work, and with a little bit of planning you can pull together a really cohesive look. Read on for my guide to choosing what to wear for a family photo shoot.

 

Decide on a Colour Palette

As I mention in my guide to planning outfits for an outdoor photo shoot, choosing a small colour palette to build everyone's outfits from will really bring your photographs together. During the Spring and Summer lighter colours tend to work really well against the blossom, daffodils, greenery and long grasses so I recommend families stick to a fairly neutral palette. In the autumn however almost anything goes, and bright colours can really complement the golden yellows, oranges and browns of the autumn leaves.

If you'd like to add something in a bright colour to your family's colour scheme I suggest choosing one bold colour - for example a mustard yellow or bright red, and then choosing 2-3 more gentle colours to complement it. Here's an example of how you could do this:

What to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo Shoot

From left to right: 1. Blue Shirt by Barbour, Chinos by Selected Homme  2. Berry Jumper by Warehouse, jeans by NYDJ  3. Navy jumper by Little Joule, brown cords by Boden, 4. Yellow cardigan by Boden, denim skirt and navy tights by Next

 

There are some rules do that apply all year round - black and bright, neon colours don't work well against nature's softer backdrop and can make people look washed out. I recommend avoiding them for your shoot.

 

Be Prepared for All Temperatures

Whilst autumn is beautiful, it's not reliably warm or cold. I remember meeting a family for  a shoot on a bitterly cold day last autumn, but having another shoot in December where it was so warm nobody had to wear a coat. After all the hard work you've put in to planning everyone's outfit, you don't want to find that you'll have to put a coat on top of it, or take off the coats you had planned on everyone wearing. Think about what everyone will wear in both situations so that you have a plan B you're happy with.

What to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo ShootWhat to Wear for an Autumn Family Photo Shoot

Embrace Layers

Being outdoors in the autumn doesn't have to mean thick coats - layers are a great way to stay warm and add lots of interest and texture to your photographs. Some ways you can introduce layering are with gilets, scarves, and thick cardigans. 

 

More Inspiration....

Just in case you need a little more inspiration as you prepare for your session you can find my Pinterest board full of ideas below. And, I'll be on hand for all my clients in the run up to their shoots to offer support and ideas as they need it.

 

Over to you

I hope you've found this guide helpful as you prepare for your autumn photo shoot. What other questions do you have? Let me know in the comments below.

 

Find the answers to more frequently asked questions here

 

 

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) families family faqs http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/what-wear-autumn-family-photo-shoot Wed, 20 Sep 2017 05:30:00 GMT
Product Photography in Surrey with Tilly and Cub http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/product-photography-surrey Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography

Over the last few months I've had the pleasure of working with Jo from Tilly + Cub on a couple of different shoots. Jo is a fellow Surrey-based mum who has started her business whilst juggling life with a young family. Tilly and Cub launched in June this year, and stocks beautiful and fairtrade Moses baskets, homeware baskets, changing baskets and more. I've been in awe of how Jo has built her brand in such a short time - in just three months she has grown an Instagram following of over 4,500 and been featured in Baby London magazine. I've loved hearing about Tilly and Cub's journey and I thought it would make a great addition to the brand stories series. Over to Jo to tell you more about her story...

Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography Tell us a bit about yourself and your family

I'm Jo, mother of a fiesty 2 3/4 year old + pregnant with "Cub" due later this year. My husband is Australian and we had been living there until last year when we moved back to my childhood home: Surrey. I both love being home and miss beautiful Oz in equal measures, but having my family nearby now is invaluable.

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What inspired you to start Tilly and Cub?

Creating something I was equally passionate about and which worked for my family has been a priority since my daughter was born. I had always wanted to start my own business, but somehow everything just came together organically at the right moment and Tilly + Cub, aka my third baby, was born!

Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography Two things that really stand out about your brand are the story behind your baskets and the fact that you give back to charity - can you tell us more about these?

The Baskets and their weavers are the true talent behind Tilly + Cub's products, I just have the privilege of sharing them with a new audience and bringing them to famillies across Europe. The Baskets are handwoven, a process which can take up to four days. They are made using natural dried elephant grass and traditional techniques. Because the Baskets are fairtrade, they empower their makers to support their own famillies and communities. 

Tilly + Cub gives 5% of sales from every basket to a variety of different charities. I believe in responsible, sustainable business and that we can each play our part in this. Our packaging is recyclable whenever possible, we support other small businesses and independent makers and support fundraisers whenever we can. Beyond our baskets we offer some lovely handmade moses basket sheets, all of which are handmade by mothers. Even our matresses are manufactured by a company which has been run by the same family for decades.

Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography You've grown your Instagram following very rapidly since starting your business - what advice do you have for other business owners who are looking to do the same?

Instagram is an incredible Community, and I think if you approach it as such (as opposed to simply a sales platform) you get the most out of it. Working from home could be isolating, but knowing there are so many other parents out there doing the same thing and being able to connect through Instagram is fantastic.

I support other businesses through purchasing, and sharing their products, and by commenting on their posts. Taking part in group giveaways is also a great way to collaborate. I have been really fortunate to have been welcomed by some really talented creatives and business people.

I actually prefer selling the baskets directly on Instagram than in our store. Although store purchases are logistically far simpler, I love getting to know the families who are purchasing the baskets, hearing their stories and even better- being updated of safe arrivals of beautiful babies. I love packaging a basket knowing where it's headed.

Instagram is a visual platform, so imagery is key. I have long been a champion of the power of professional photography, and it was something I prioritised investing in straight away. I work to blend my own images with the professional ones. Using apps such as VSCO and Mosaic help me create a cohesive feed. I took an online course with Sarah Tasker (@meandorla) which I have found really helped me understand things like hashtags and the algorithm. I think most of all, I really enjoy Instagram, and that goes a long way. 

Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Product Photography | Clare Murthy Photography How have you found the experience of starting your own business with a toddler at home? 

I really love being able to use my mind in a different capacity and doing something "for me" again. Working around my daughter is both wonderful and exhausting. Of course there are days I bank on a nap to get things done and it just doesn't happen. But she can be the sweetest little assistant and is chief of both stickers and the stamp so it's very much a team effort. My husband really helps too both practically and emotionally.

Surrey Product PhotographySurrey Product PhotographySurrey Product Photography Surrey Product PhotographySurrey Product PhotographySurrey Product Photography And finally...what's next for Tilly and Cub?

It seems to have a life of its own and has evolved very much organically. It's exciting to share new products with our customers and meet their needs. We hope to bring a basket stand out in the near future, and there are mini Moses baskets for teddies and dolls coming soon! Next year I would love to get out to Ghana to visit the talented makers and see the work of one of the charities we support, but it just depends how newborn life is treating us. As always, family comes first.

 

I hope you've enjoyed hearing more about Tilly + Cub. You can keep in touch with what Jo is up to over on her website, and on Instagram and Facebook.

 

Find out more about how I work with small businesses here

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) brand story photography tips for business owners http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/product-photography-surrey Mon, 18 Sep 2017 05:00:00 GMT
Our Stay at Featherdown Farm in the New Forest - A Holiday Photo Journal http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/our-stay-at-featherdown-farm-in-the-new-forest---a-holiday-photo-journal Featherdown Farm imagesFeatherdown Farm imagesFeatherdown Farm images Last week we spent a few days away in the New Forest, and stayed with Featherdown Farms. It was our first experience of glamping as a family, and we had a lovely time getting to know all of the animals on the farm and exploring the local area.

We stayed in a log cabin (about as far away from camping as you can get!) which was really well equipped and the only 'creature comfort' that we missed was electricity. This one thing forced us to slow down - we used candles and paraffin lamps for light, cooked on a wood burning stove and spent a lot of time with our phones switched off to save the battery.

On our first day we had a tour of the farm, and got to meet all of the animals who were staying there. We were based at Midgham Farm, which was home to goats, pigs, horses, calves, ducks and hens. The tour was lovely for children - they helped to feed the animals, learned their names and even joined in with grooming the horses. Each child was also able to collect one egg each day from the hens.

Featherdown Farm ImagesFeatherdown Farm ImagesFeatherdown Farm Images As well as all the animals, there was lots of other entertainment for children - trampolines, sandpits, logs for climbing on, and my daughter's favourite...lots of muddy puddles!

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The first thing that everyone has asked me about the trip is how we cooked! Each lodge or cabin has it's own wood burning stove and a BBQ so we did most of our cooking on those. We also shared a camp fire spot with the neighbouring cabin, and made the occasional cup of tea there too. Twice a week there's also the opportunity to use the farm's wood fired pizza oven and we took full advantage - the pizza was delicious, and since everyone congregated around the oven it provided a nice opportunity to meet the other families staying there.

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Each day we divided our time between the farm and day trips. Since we have a Peppa Pig fan in the house, we spent one day at Peppa Pig World which was about a 30 minute drive from the farm. We spent another day walking in the New Forest, and found some buggy friendly trails from the Blackwater Car Park. The third day was very cold and wet, which gave us the perfect excuse to have a lunch at The Pig - somewhere we've been hoping to visit for a while!

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Over to you

Are you planning a family getaway soon? If so you might like my tips for taking great photos on your family holiday

 

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) personal travel http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/our-stay-at-featherdown-farm-in-the-new-forest---a-holiday-photo-journal Thu, 14 Sep 2017 21:57:20 GMT
London Vacation Photographer http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/london-vacation-photographer London Vacation Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyLondon Vacation Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyLondon Vacation Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography This summer I've had the pleasure of getting to know families who are visiting London and would like to have a photo shoot to record their vacation memories. These sessions have been a lot of fun, and I am excited to share this vacation photo shoot from July with you today.

This family had spent the summer staying close to Hampton Court Palace, and since they had made so many happy memories there we decided to base their photo shoot in the area surrounding it. I always love it when families bring their personality to the shoot, and when we planned this session we talked about the things that had made their summer so memorable. You'll see some of these memories through the photographs - from learning to ride a bike, to some very special ice cream!

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I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of the highlights from this family's session. If you'd like to book a shoot for your family you can get in touch with me here. I'd love to hear from you.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) families family photographer photography http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/london-vacation-photographer Mon, 11 Sep 2017 05:30:00 GMT
An Autumn Family Photo Shoot in Surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/autumn-family-photo-shoot-surrey Autumn Family Photo Shoot Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot Surrey | Clare Murthy Photography I was in Bushy Park for a family photo shoot last week, and I noticed that the leaves on some of the trees are starting to change colour. It's very subtle, but since then I've started to notice it everywhere - autumn is definitely on the way! Autumn is one of my favourite times for outdoor family photographs so I'm pretty excited about it's arrival (you can read more about why autumn is a great time for a photo shoot here), and I remembered that I have a couple of family photo shoots from last Autumn that I haven't shared with you yet.

Today I'm sharing this lovely family of three's session from last November. We met on Esher Common on a very cold morning but were rewarded with beautiful light, and lots of golden leaves. This family's little boy was one of the smiliest I've ever met, and such a superstar through the whole shoot! I hope you enjoy seeing these favourites from their session. 

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Find out about family session information and pricing here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) families family photography surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/autumn-family-photo-shoot-surrey Wed, 06 Sep 2017 05:30:00 GMT
Everything You Need To Know for Great First Day of School Photos http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/first-day-of-school-photos With most schools starting back this week, a big priority for lots of parents will be taking some first day of school photographs. Not only are these memories lovely to share in the moment, it's wonderful to be able to look back at them in years to come. In fact, here are a couple of mine...

Over the last year I've written lots more posts about photographing your children, so I've created a summary of everything you need to know when it comes to back to school, or first day of school, photos. Read on to find out more...

 

There are so many factors that make up a good photograph - not only the photographer's ability to use their camera but also location, timing, how the subject is feeling and much more. This guide to better back to school photos takes you through five steps to capture the moment perfectly.

Even if you are using your phone you can still take excellent photos. These tips on getting the most from your phone's camera are sure to help. I also love this recent video from Apple about taking great portraits with your iphone.

Once you've taken the photographs, be sure to back them up! My 5 Tips for Organising Your Family's Digital Photographs will take you through the process step by step

And finally, if you'd like some reassurance that only the people you want to see your photos can see them on social media, check out these tips for sharing your back to school photos safely online from social media expert Isil Simsek.

 

Over to you

I hope these tutorials help you to capture some lovely memories of your chiuldren going back to school this year. What other tips would you add? Let me know in the comments below.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) photography tips for parents http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/9/first-day-of-school-photos Mon, 04 Sep 2017 06:28:06 GMT
How to Share Back To School Photos Safely Online http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/share-back-to-school-photos-safely-online Share your children's back to school photos online safelyShare your children's back to school photos online safelyShare your children's back to school photos online safely

I'm excited to share a guest post with you today from Isil at Social Thyme. Isil is a Surrey-based mum and freelance social media manager who helps businesses plan and execute their social media marketing strategies. I asked Isil whether she would write this guest post, as so many back to school photographs are shared online at the start of September each year. I'm sure it's really important to the parents sharing them to know that they're doing it safely. I found Isil's guide really useful and I hope you do too. Over to Isil...

 

It is nearly back to school time! An exciting time for the whole family especially if your little one is just starting  school. On the first day of school, my Facebook and Instagram feeds are often filled with lots of smiley faces with their uniforms, posing at school or in front of their house.

As a social media manager, I notice that people unwittingly give away too much information about  where they live and which school their child attends. From an online safety perspective, the more personal details you share on social media, the more vulnerable you and your child will become.

Being mindful about the photos we take and how and where we share them minimizes the risk. Here are five tips to consider:

 

1. Check your location settings

First things first. Check your location settings. When uploading photos and videos check your privacy settings on the social media services you use as well as on the device. You can change the privacy settings to control who sees your photos. 

Follow these links to learn how to change the privacy settings on your photos for different platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.

 

2. Check the background of the photograph

Be mindful about the place you are taking the picture. For example if you’re taking a photo at the school gate, people can see which school your child attends. If there’s a landmark in the background, again you are giving away information about your location. Make sure your house number is not displayed if you are taking a photo in front of your house.

 

3. Check for names on display

Be mindful about displaying your child’s name if they have a name tag on their bags or if they have a uniform with school logo.

how to share your back to school photos safely onlinehow to share your back to school photos safely online

4. Ask other parents for consent

If you are taking your child’s photo at school with a group of their friends, make sure you ask for consent from other parents, before sharing these on social media platforms.

 

5. Consider your captions

When sharing the photos online, make sure these can only be viewed by your friends. You might also want to consider what information you are giving out with the captions. When we say “Little Sam, 4 years old, starting at XYZ Primary today!”, we are giving away too much information!

 

As parents, it is difficult to keep on top of the ever evolving social media platforms, but these basic tips will help your family stay safe online. Today’s children are learning about staying safe online at school. If they are old enough, use this opportunity to get them involved and role model how you share photos online.

 

Thanks Isil for sharing these tips with us. You can find more tips for using social media over on Isil's blog, and find my tips for taking great back to school photographs here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) photography tips for parents http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/share-back-to-school-photos-safely-online Wed, 30 Aug 2017 05:30:00 GMT
Clapham Newborn Photographer http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/clapham-newborn-photographer Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography I'm popping in on this bank holiday weekend to share some of my favourite photographs from a recent newborn session with this gorgeous baby boy. I met this little fellow and his family in July, when he was just 9 days old. I always start my newborn sessions by settling baby to sleep and taking some lovely, natural photographs of them on their own. As you can see this little boy was a perfect model and after a a few big yawns he settled down to sleep.

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Whilst I'm photographing baby on their own, I'll also be sure to capture all of the tiny little details that make them unique. These little features don't stay little for long, and it's always lovely to have a record of them in the first few days.  Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography

After I photographed the baby, I moved onto family portraits. My favourite photograph from this family's session is the one below - capturing three generations of the family in one frame - grandmother, mum and baby. Clapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographyClapham Newborn Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography

I hope you've enjoyed seeing some favourites from this session. You can find out more about newborn sessions here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) babies newborn photographer photography http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/clapham-newborn-photographer Mon, 28 Aug 2017 05:30:00 GMT
How to Do Your Own Makeup for Photo Shoots http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/do-your-own-makeup-for-photo-shoots How to do your own makeup for a photoshootHow to do your own makeup for a photoshootHow to do your own makeup for a photoshoot Make-up is one of those things that you may not think about when it comes to having our photograph taken - we want to look natural in the photographs, so surely it’s better to just wear the same makeup we wear every day?

Unfortunately not. Generally speaking, the makeup we wear day to day won’t show up as well on camera as it does in real life. And since you’re investing in professional photographs it’s well worth investing some time in your makeup too, so that you walk away with a set of photographs that show you off at your best. Here are my recommendations for applying your makeup for photographs yourself:
 

Apply your makeup in natural light

Just as the kind of light you take a photograph in will make a difference to the final result, so will the kind of light you apply your makeup in. Since I almost always work with natural light on photo shoots, I recommend that you apply your makeup in natural light too.

Find a large, bright window and face towards it as you apply your make-up.

 

Prepare your skin first

Using a primer to prepare your skin before you apply your makeup can help to give a better finish, and make your makeup last longer. If you’re not sure which primer is right for you, this guide might be a good place to start.

How to do your own makeup for a photoshootHow to do your own makeup for a photoshootHow to do your own makeup for a photoshoot

Use a full coverage foundation

Day to day I wear a tinted moisturiser rather than foundation, but this never looks good in photographs as I hope. As I mentioned before, make-up rarely looks the same in photos as it does in real life - it tends to look less vibrant. With all of your make-up I recommend going heavier than usual - and in the case of your base use a full-coverage foundation.

 

Avoid shimmer

Anything with a shimmer in it is a no-no for photographs. All that shimmer will reflect light, and not give the look you’re after. It’s not just eye shadows and highlighters that you need to watch out for here - lots of foundations have a shimmer too, including mineral make-up.

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Talk to a Pro

If you’re not feeling confident about applying your own make-up, do talk to a professional. This doesn’t have to mean booking a professional make-up artist (although I do recommend doing this for headshots in particular.) Instead you could go to your local department store and spend time at one of the beauty counters there. Usually if you’re thinking of buying a new product, the consultants will be happy to apply it for you, show you different options and give you advice on the best way to use it. Some counters also offer makeovers or make-up lessons for a fee, and if you really aren’t sure where to begin this could be a great option for you.

 

Over to you

 

I hope you find these tips helpful as you prepare for your photoshoot. Let me know how you get on with them in the comments below.

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) faqs photography tips for business owners photography tips for parents http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/do-your-own-makeup-for-photo-shoots Wed, 23 Aug 2017 05:30:00 GMT
Small Business Photography in Surrey For Communicate With Me http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/small-business-photography-in-surrey-for-communicate-with-me Surrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography

I recently had the pleasure of getting to know Charlotte Wood, a Surrey Based Speech and Language Therapist . Charlotte asked me to take some photographs for her business, Communicate With Me, and I'm excited to share her story (and photographs from our shoot together) with you today as part of my brand story series.

I always spend quite a bit of time on the phone with business owners before our shoot - it helps us both get clear on the vision for the shoot, and make sure that they walk away with photos that communicate exactly the right message. What struck me every time I spoke to Charlotte, and during the shoot is her passion, professionalism and energy for doing a great job for the children she works with. During our shoot Charlotte did real therapy activities with the children and you can see her in action in the photographs below. I hope you enjoy hearing her story.

Surrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography Tell us a bit about yourself and your family life

My husband and I are parents to our much loved son Thomas and our doggy Milo. My husband and I seem to be on an endless journey of renovating our house in Worcester Park. We moved to the area about 4 years ago and now feel pretty settled here. We are close by to some lovely parks, Milo loves being able to roam around off lead and Thomas delights in watching him get up to mischief.

One of my big passions or even obsessions in life is food. I try to cook most days and weeks, and am guilty of filling my Instagram with mostly pictures of food (and pics of my son). We love spending time together as a family. Both my husband and I love being parents and in the future we would really like to expand our brood.  

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I’d love to know more about your business. What do you do?

I'm a children's speech and language therapist. I find a lot of people don't know much about speech and language therapy, and our jobs are really so varied depending on the client group. 

 

I have to admit that I didn't know much about speech and language therapy either until we started working together on your shoot. How did you specialise in working with children?

Over the last 10 years I have was lucky enough to have worked in spilt posts where I practiced in different settings e.g. a couple of days in schools, half a week in a clinic or a couple of days visiting children in their homes. Throughout my whole career though, I have always worked in primary and secondary schools with school age children who have Special Educational Needs. Many of these children have learning difficulties, and often have diagnoses such as global developmental delay, general learning difficulties, dyslexia, dyspraxia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and speech delay, speech disorder, language delay and language disorder. Dyslexia and dyspraxia are disabilities that are close to my heart and I understand well as I also have these specific learning difficulties myself.

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What does your work involve?

The most common disabilities in childhood are speech, language and social communication difficulties and they represent the most prevalent type of special educational needs. My job is to work directly with the children improving all aspects of their communication and learning skills including attention skills, vocabulary, speech articulation and conversation skills. Having a good rapport with the children is absolutely essential. When children are motivated and captivated their potential for learning is immense. I strive to create fun, engaging therapy activities and programmes that children delight in. The best time to teach a child new knowledge and skills is when they are happy, interested and intrigued.  

My job also includes assessing these children and writing reports and recommendations about therapy and educational provision. This is a very important part of my job that I am also passionate about, as it's a way of ensuring that the children I work with are given every chance that they deserve at succeeding in school and making friends. A huge part of my work involves working directly with parents and teachers advising, training and demonstrating how to support their children at home and in school. I am qualified tutor and have really enjoyed training and accrediting adult learners such as teachers and nursery staff with GCSE and A-level equivalent qualifications in speech, language and communication difficulties.

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As we worked together, I also learned that you work with children before they reach school age, and I saw you in action at our shoot! When would you work with young children like this?

Throughout my career I have also worked with much younger children, pre-schoolers and toddlers, who present with similar but also very different needs. It's common for children to have speech or language delay in their early years. Almost anyone you meet knows someone or may themselves have been late talkers, had speech sound difficulties or stammered. Although speech and language difficulties are common, the importance of these skills shouldn't be underestimated. Communication skills are the most sought after qualities needed in today's workforce. Reading, writing and listening carefully are some of most fundamental skills needed to develop working relationships and friendships. The time before a child starts school is critical for their visual, language and emotional development. There is a small window of opportunity in identifying speech, language and social communication difficulties early, intervening with appropriate support, and preventing speech, language, social communication, and literacy  difficulties from persisting into later childhood and adult life. 

I work with parents, child minders and nursery staff in identifying children whose speech, language or social skills may be delayed. Sometimes all that parents need is reassurance their children are developing age appropriately. Other times they need some advice or a few sessions where I can give more detailed recommendations and demonstrations on how to structure everyday experiences so that there are opportunities not barriers to language development. In other cases where a child may have speech sound delay or disorder, or language difficulties e.g with vocabulary or grammar it is important that I provide more direct and intensive speech & language therapy with the child and their parent, and this often takes the form of a block of weekly or fortnightly therapy sessions.   

Surrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography What inspired you to start your own private practice?

Working in senior therapist roles in the NHS was rewarding but also demanding. There were many aspects of my job that detracted from being able to give face to face time to the children. It was frustrating when I couldn't work with certain children in their schools because they lived in the wrong postcode! I also found it heartbreaking when I had to discontinue therapy or transfer children to a different team because they had started or changed school.

I really value the importance of developing lasting relationships with children and their families. I have been fortunate enough to have been employed directly by the same school for six years. I have personally seen  the huge benefits to both myself in terms of my professional development and to the children and their families in having continuity of the same therapist. 

I had grown a passion for and gained experience in working with 3- 16 yr olds, and had found a particular niche with special educational needs. I had also gained experience in training other speech and language therapy students, managing other speech and language therapists, and leading on service development projects. After years of specialising I felt it was the right time to set up my own speech and language therapy service for children and young people in my local community.   

Surrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography How have you found the experience of setting your practice up whilst balancing work and looking after your son? What advice would you have for other mums wanting to do something similar?

I have found the experience both exciting and nerve wracking. I am so fortunate to have supportive friends and family around me. I have a really amazing husband, we work as a great team and have supported each others careers at different stages in our life. The best recommendation I can give is to meet and network with other parents who are self employed too, it's useful to network with similar professionals in your own field, but also different business types as it encourages you to 'think outside the box'. 

Surrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Small Business Photographer | Clare Murthy Photography

What made you decide to have professional photos taken for your business?

I have always been wary of the medical model that was associated with my profession when I was employed by the NHS. From my own gut feeling and talking to other parent friends I felt that this could sometimes put parents off, maybe they'd had bad experiences with a particular NHS trust, they felt that they were going to a doctors appointment, or they felt like their child was being tested or their parenting skills judged. I wanted my Speech and Language Therapy services to represent me and my holistic therapy philosophy rather than a clinic or a hospital. 

 

How do you plan to use the photos from our session?

I will be using the photos for my website and Facebook page, and social media accounts. I will also use the head shot photos of myself for Linkedin, and on the listings page on the Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice (ASLTIP) website.  

 

Thank you Charlotte for sharing your story today. Where can readers find you if they want to know more?

You can find me over on my website, and on Facebook and Instagram

 

Find out more about how I work with small businesses here

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) brand story photography tips for business owners http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/small-business-photography-in-surrey-for-communicate-with-me Mon, 21 Aug 2017 05:30:00 GMT
5 Reasons Why Autumn Is A Great Time for A Family Photo Shoot http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/5-reasons-book-family-photo-shoot-this-autumn Autumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy Photography Although most of us are hoping that summer will last just a bit longer, I’ve already got my mind on the autumn. It’s one of the most popular times for outdoor family photo sessions, and my diary is already filling up. If you’re thinking about booking a family photography session, here are five good reasons to do it this autumn.

 

1. Autumn is a beautiful backdrop for photographs

Autumn is such a beautiful time of the year - the beautiful golden yellows and burnt orange colours of leaves, misty sunrises and golden sunsets. Mother Nature really does put on a good show, and this makes a gorgeous backdrop for your photographs. 

 

2. You can start your photography session a little later in the day

To catch the most beautiful light for my client’s portraits I always like to start early in the morning, or late in the afternoon. In the summer this can mean a very early start! In the autumn and winter we can start a little later as the sun spends more time lower in the sky. This means more time for you to prepare...and perhaps even a little lie in!

Autumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot | Clare Murthy Photography

3. You can wear bright colours

During the majority of the year, I always suggest wearing softer, muted tones for your photographs. They work well with the pretty flowers of spring, and the long grasses and hazy days of summer. Autumn however opens up a whole new wardrobe of options - you can still opt for softer tones like cream, navy or brown, but pops of bold, bright tones such as red, mustard and purple also work really well. 

Read more about choosing what to wear for your photo shoot here.

 

4. Playing in the autumn leaves is fun 

It’s so important to me that children have fun at their photography session - not only is it more enjoyable for them when they do, but it’s also more relaxing and enjoyable for their parents too. I always come to shoots with lots of games up my sleeve, but autumn provides extra fun...who doesn’t love running through or jumping in big piles of autumn leaves?

Find out more about preparing your children for a photo shoot.

Autumn Family Photo Shoot in Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot in Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyAutumn Family Photo Shoot in Surrey | Clare Murthy Photography

5. The photographs will make lovely, personalised Christmas presents

After your shoot, not only will your photographs be special for you, they’ll also make wonderful Christmas presents for your friends and family members. Prints, albums and gift portfolios all make very special gifts at this time of year.

 

You can contact me to book your session here.

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) families family photographer photography surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/5-reasons-book-family-photo-shoot-this-autumn Wed, 16 Aug 2017 20:42:53 GMT
Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender Fields in Banstead http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/family-photography-at-mayfield-lavender-fields-in-banstead Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead, Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead, Surrey | Clare Murthy PhotographyFamily Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead, Surrey | Clare Murthy Photography A few weeks ago I ran some lavender sessions at the stunning Mayfield Lavender in Banstead. In total I had sessions with three families, and I'm excited to share a few highlights from each family's photo shoot with you today.

Despite a few unexpected showers during the morning, I had a lovely morning at the lavender fields. The lavender makes such a pretty backdrop, and the rows are perfect for running up and down which was a hit with the children!

The family pictured above were the last family I photographed, and this was their first family photo shoot. I really hope these photographs give them a happy memory of this moment in time.

Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography

The second family I photographed had a 17 month old son, who really enjoyed running up and down through the lavender as you'll see below! I also discovered that I had photographed some of their friends a few months beforehand, and it was lovely to make the connection.

Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography

 

For the first family I photographed, this was their second session with me. You can see the first here. It was lovely to see how their children have grown and developed since their session last year. Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography Surrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy PhotographySurrey Family Photography at Mayfield Lavender in Banstead | Clare Murthy Photography I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of my favourite moments from these sessions. You can see more from my family sessions here.

 

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clare@claremurthy.com (Clare Murthy 2017) families family photographer photography surrey http://www.claremurthy.com/blog/2017/8/family-photography-at-mayfield-lavender-fields-in-banstead Mon, 14 Aug 2017 05:30:00 GMT