Capturing memories when your children are teenagers…

Two girls having fun at a teen makeover session
A makeover session in our studio may prove the easiest option

School’s out for summer – and for some of our young people, this summer marks the end of an era as they leave the classroom behind and move on to other things.

As with other special occasions, it’s natural to want a photographic record of the day, and perhaps to record the changes from their first day at school to their last.

But teenagers can be unwilling models, and it would be easy to let the whole process degenerate into a frustrating battle of wills.

So, how can you get good shots of your beautiful sons and daughters without the sighing, sulking or shouting?

First of all, it’s important to pick the right time. First thing in the morning, particularly if they have a bus to catch or somewhere to be, is probably not that time. Give them some warning – after all, very few people are happy to have a camera thrust in their face without even the opportunity to run a brush through their hair!

Work with them…you may envisage an adorable photo of them in school uniform to display alongside the one from all those years ago marking their first day, but will they feel comfortable? Their prom outfit, if they have one, may be a better idea, or something else they would wear to go out in.

Involve their friends. Not only will this lessen the chances of the photoshoot descending into a family row, but it may even make it fun. If you want to treat them and turn it into a real celebration, we offer makeover sessions and photoshoots at our studio in Herne Bay High Street that would take all the stress away from you.

Let them see the photos – before they are printed. You may think they look adorable, but they’ll notice any hair that’s out of place or wonky eyeliner. Give them a chance to fix it and then try again. Maybe not 50 times, but within reason.

Relax and have fun. Remember why you are doing it; there’s nothing worse than an awkward pose and a forced smile. If you can both enjoy the experience then the results will be much better and you won’t have another battle over displaying the finished project.

Of course, if this all sounds like too much hard work, you can always give us a call. We have years of experience of working with families and people of all ages and we can make even the most reluctant model feel at ease. We may even be able to convince them to pose with you too for a beautiful keepsake or the perfect present for grandparents.

Good luck – let us know how you get on!

Get Your Tatts Out…

A man showing his tattoos
Show us some skin this summer

This summer, we are asking you to get your tatts out.

Yes, you read that right – show us some skin and you could win a modelling contract and a portfolio worth £1,000.

We are looking for people who will dare to bare and be photographed with their tattoos on show for a nationwide competition. Other prizes include cash, a session with a celebrity tattoo artist and a year’s gym membership.

There are some stunning tattoos out there and now is the perfect time of year to get them noticed.

All entries in the competition will feature on a national website, www.getyourtattsout.co.uk and entry is completely free. A £30 deposit is payable to secure the studio slot, but this will be taken off the price of any photographs ordered or refunded in full. Potential models should be aged 18 or over and there is no limit on the number of tattoos they can have; anything from one to 100 plus is fine.

But the designs should be in an area you are happy to have photographed, so shy and retiring types need not apply.

We’re really excited about this competition because it will highlight and celebrate the amazing talent of some of our local tattoo artists.

We see some really incredible body art around the town every day and can’t wait to create images that will really do them justice.

Will the winner be from east Kent? Quite possibly! So tell your inked friends, or show us your own body art, and we’ll work with you on poses and styles to show them off.

For more information or to sign up for the competition, visit www.getyourtattsout.co.uk or call 01227 370650. Alternatively, pop into the studio in Herne Bay High Street.

Location, location, location…

The 2014 Herne Bay Carnival Court on location

Kent is known as the Garden of England, and with good reason.

We are surrounded by stunning scenery, with coast and countryside both on our doorstep, and with a host of beautiful locations to choose from as a natural photo backdrop.

Of course, there are times when you’ll want the comfort of our fully equipped High Street studio for your family photographs, including newborn shoots when the temperature is key, or bump or boudoir sessions when privacy is important.

But at other times, it’s often a real treat to be inspired by our natural landscape and to take to the great outdoors for some truly memorable images.

We’re lucky enough to be the official Herne Bay Carnival Court photographers, which means that every year we work with Miss Herne Bay and her princesses to take publicity images and to create keepsakes as a memento of their year.

The 2014 Herne Bay Carnival Court on location
The 2014 Herne Bay carnival court on location

There are very few locations we haven’t visited with various carnival queens and the rest of the court over the years, and Reculver is one of our favourites. The ruins of the original St Mary’s Church make a fantastic location for dramatic shots, and the wild and often windswept country park can also be a wonderful inspiration.

The bandstand right in the middle of Herne Bay’s seafront is another location that would be easy to overlook, but with the skills and knowledge we have acquired and the hard work of the council’s contractors and Herne Bay in Bloom volunteers it becomes a picturesque setting.

The beach itself is always popular and there are coves and bays right around the Kentish coastline that suit different situations and moods. We know all the best ones, whether you want seclusion and sand or pebbles and pools, and can work with the light, the tides and our ever-changeable British weather to make sure the photographs are everything you’d imagined, and more.

A baby after its christening
For christenings, whether it’s a Royal baby or not, it’s important to be able to work with the location

Of course, sometimes the location is determined by an event or occasion, such as a christening like that of little Princess Charlotte, who was joined by the rest of the Royal family in Sandringham today.

And in that case you can rely on the Style Photography team to prepare beforehand, identifying the best areas of light and shade and spotting any potential pitfalls.

After all, even if your guestlist doesn’t include the Queen, you won’t want to risk anyone being hidden by a pillar or squashed in a dark corner! We may even have been able to advise the Duchess of Cornwall on an alternative way in that would have avoided the gust of wind that almost led to red faces all round…

The Duchess of Cornwall has a Marilyn Monroe moment at Princess Charlotte's christening
The Duchess of Cornwall has a Marilyn Monroe moment at Princess Charlotte’s christening. Photo: The Telegraph