It is that beautiful time of year again where woods are blooming; covered in a purple sea of bluebells. I love taking the family for strolls on warm spring days and it really has to be one of my favourite places for photographs too. Every year since the girls were born, we have been to the woods for photos and it is something I hope to continue over the years.
This year, we worked with a fabulous photographer called Hiral from HJ Photography. She is based in Chelmsford, Essex so if you are nearby and are looking for some family photography, she is wonderful with children, spends time getting to know them and really brings the best out of them. Hiral comes highly recommended by Popitha – CLICK HERE for her details.
I love photography and am always taking photos of the girls, however, I am not very good. I’m one of those people that has all the gear but no idea!! Whilst talking with Hiral on the photoshoot, I was asking her about taking some shots myself when we are out as a family in the woods. She has very kindly given me some tips so we can all have a go at taking photos of our children ourselves.
Find Your Nearest Bluebell Woods
Take a look on the National trust website. They have a database to help you find the best bluebells – CLICK HERE.
Plan Your Day and the Time
The best kind of light is a bright overcast day. Many think it is when the sun is shining but it is not as this often causes squinting! The evening light is the most beautiful. At this time of year, if you give your little ones an early dinner and then head to the woods for about around 5.45, the light is perfect!
Look for Lots of Bluebells
Pick an area where the bluebells are nice and dense to capture the amazing colours of the flowers.
Snap, Snap, Snap
Get down low, low, low. Anything that gets you away from ‘eye’ level will really help your images stand out from the crowd. Keep away and shoot lots! Digital photography and phone cameras allow you to experiment, so take lots of different photos from all directions and angles.
Have Fun and Enjoy the Moment
Capture photos of your children having fun. This is their childhood and you are making memories for them. Challenge yourself and get in the photos too. Maybe invest in a tripod for your camera or phone!
Do’s and Don’ts with children
Don’t ask your child to stand still and smile at the camera. Instead, get them moving, playing games, making silly sounds – get them doing what they love!
Sometimes things will go wrong, or they will just be grumpy. Don’t worry, try these few extra tips to make the best out of a grumpy situation..
- Don’t go straight into asking your children to pose for photos, when you arrive at the woods, take a walk and let them explore.
- Whilst they are having fun, this is your opportunity to click away but make sure you play with them too or they will get bored, then need some of your creative ideas like looking for bugs, maybe the fairies have left some coins for them to find, play hide and seek or go on a good old bear hunt!
- Bribe them – it doesn’t harm them to do this once in a while and a little encouragement can work wonders!
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HJ Photography offer a wonderful range of different family and wedding shoots, so pop across to their page to take a look – CLICK HERE!
Bluebells are an ancient wildflower but they can be vulnerable to habitat destruction so make sure that when you go exploring your local woods, you cause as little harm to them as possible – don’t pick, don’t trample, leave them as little disturbed as possible.
** The photos session was gifted to us for the purpose of this article but all thoughts and opinions are my own.