Before I got pregnant I only ever took photos on my iPhone, we owned a DSLR camera, however, it was older than gods dog!! I always knew I wanted to start a Instagram page for Nandy but had no idea what constituted a decent photo. I snapped away happily on my iPhone and posted the photos on his feed. Soon enough I started to see other Instagram accounts sharing their photos which were of significantly greater quality and much better form than mine, which got me thinking, I need to improve my photos!
So, I dusted off the old sony DSLR camera and went to visit Sarah @peagreenboat photography. Sarah has taken some awesome photos of my bump and all of Nandys’ newborn photos, so it made sense to go and get a tutorial from her on the in’s and outs of form, light and how to set the camera up manually instead of “auto” which is cheating!
Sarahs’ photos have been featured in vogue magazine, she recently worked with Peter Andre and Emily on an advertisement for N Power and her super power abilities to put babies to sleep and recently had “image the day” from the Guild of photographers – not bad ey!
Baby superpowers with Peter Andre, Emily and Sarah @peagreenboat
So let’s start from then beginning – Lesson 1 – It was a cold December day and the light was poor, we had to make best use of large windows in her studio to allow me to try and capture some snaps. Nandy only lay down at this point and didn’t sit up of his own accord so taking various shots was difficult to achieve. I learnt about how to deal with light and using the camera settings to get the most out of the situation by adjusting F stop, ISO and white balance.
Merry Christmas – Lesson number 1
Still something wasn’t right, I was having to upload the photos to my iMac from the camera and faff around then emailing them back to myself to upload to Instagram. There must be an easier way!
I reverted back to using my trusty iPhone, it was easier and more convenient. But wasn’t giving results. I started taking photos in the conservatory at home over winter as this was the brightest place in my dark house! Even with natural light flooding in – it still wasn’t enough – that’s when I took the plunge to buy a new DSLR. I read a few reviews and sought some feedback from other mums and it seemed the best choice would be a canon or Nikon.
I decided on the canon – it was relatively cheap for my maternity leave budget and would take crisper photos even with just a kit lens (I’m still to upgrade to the 50mm fixed lens!!!).
Immediately I noticed a difference in my photo quality and it made uploading my pictures to Instagram way easier due to its in built wifi function!
I’d gotten used to taking indoor photos against a homemade white background but I hadn’t yet explored outdoor photos – I needed more help, so we went back to see Sarah….
Me (taken by Sarah)
Sarah owns a beautiful property in Worcestershire with some beautiful grounds – flowers a plenty and a view to die for. It was the perfect setting for some outdoor photos. The sun shone and the photo opportunities were aplenty!
I did want my Instagram feed to have an overall “whiter” feel to its appearance so we scouted out places around her grounds which would lend themselves well to the look we were after. We found doorways and flowers all keeping with the white theme.
It was when I passed a beautiful magnolia tree that I couldn’t resist taking some less than “white” photos with his toes in the grass. He was loving the attention and full of smiles and eating everything he shouldn’t.
Sarah showed me how to meter for the change in sunlight – amending the ISO settings, white balance and adding in a reflector board / shade to keep the sun off his face and create shadow (which caught the wind and smacked poor Nandy in the face).
I struggled with the change from shaded areas to direct sunlight – but with a few tweaks to settings I was back up and snapping away again.
The camera lens does limit my photos and my post production / editing skills need to improve but it won’t happen overnight. My next trick is to buy and then teach myself photoshop so I can make professional edits to my pictures.
So far this is just a hobby and I’m enjoying it. So that’s all that matters really.
Thanks to Sarah @peagreenboatphoto for her help and support – if you’re interested in having some photos taken of your newborn / baby then contact her below …