This fabulous client also goes by the name of Candice and we met back in 2008 in school. It’s crazy to think that friends from school come and go and sometimes catch up later on in life. Now we are 8 years since school and met up for the first time since for a pre-wedding consultation back in October.

Candice and Tom are getting married this August and after meeting with me in October decided that I will be their wedding photographer. When we met the option for a pre-wedding shoot was discussed which of course I always offer. Candice didn’t just want the standard couples pre-wedding session but to bring their children along too. Which again was a perfect idea! For anyone who knows me know how much I love a family session, so to combine a pre-wedding and family session together was so exciting!

We planned to do the pre-wedding family session in June once the weather started to warmer up and we could get some great outdoor shots without being in coats and scarfs.

Together with some back and fourth ideas we came to decide that Belhus Woods Country Park would be a perfect location. Its a park I have visisted previously and has so much to do! With the session not only being about Candice and Tom but their children too it made magical sense to go to a location that they would all enjoy.

On arrival I was created by them all in the car park area and suggested the route we take for our entire session. We started out in the woodland part of the park that was full of bluebelles and pretty flowers. It is so important for to when photographing families that they all feel comfortable in my presence. I am the stranger taking their photographs and theres nothing more i’d dislike than for children to not feel at complete ease with me around.

Entering the woodland and to let of some nerves I asked the children to all find me a white flower. There was only a few that I had spotted but it was a little way to get some communication going and also for them to start exploring freely without feeling a little nervous. It wasn’t long before they was in full swing of things, okay after a little disappointment that there wasn’t many white flowers to find. The hunt itself made some beautiful photographs!

Then it was heading to duck pond which is on the same track as the play park. There comes a time in all session where children become distracted, uninterested and also fed up. I can image it can get quite boring for them and that is totally not what I want them to experience. Allowing children to be their complete selves is all I ever aim for, although we did really want to go to the duck pond first! With a little persuading of some treats, perhaps ice cream we managed to get the little legs in toe.

The Duck Pond of Belhus Wood’s is very open and a beautiful backdrop. I have to thank Candice and Tom, they really are fun parents. Down for piggy back races and all sorts and no prompting was necessary they just did their thing! It enabled me to photograph this family in their truest form. Yes we may have experienced some little tantrums but would it be real is there wasn’t any on a family day out? More than anything it was all round fun!

Heading back towards the park the children set off like jet skies, they really was excited! I can almost imagine people thinking it would be difficult to carry on a session in the middle of a big play area which was full of other people. Well the answer to that is no, its not! Apart from not photographing other children or them being present in the back ground, being in the middle of a play area is nothing just enjoyment for me. There really is no better way that watching children characteristics, movement and freedom than when they are happy and playing! This part of the session made some of my favourite photographs! Almost like looking through an old family album of a day at the park, full of nostalgia and story.

After the park playing was up a slow stroll back to the visitor centre meant we was one step closer to ice cream. Of course that didn’t stop the family having some fun, they even made a hand in hand walk memorable. With the children eating their ice creams taking a breather it allowed a little time to get some couple shots of Candice and Tom alone in a little greenery area aside from the picnic benches.

I love that Candice and Tom opted for something a little different to a standard engagement session. Having their children with them on the day really touched my heart having children myself and how much love they have as a family.

I cannot wait to document their wedding day and give them visual memories to keep forever.

Shianne is a lovely kind photographer, she was great with our children and made us all feel comfortable. It was such a natural experience no one felt camera shy, she let us do our own thing. She got the kids involved in games and really knew how to bring out the best for out photographs! Loved our family shoot! Can’t wait for her to shoot our wedding in August!