Some fun & creative things you can do with your photos

Let’s face it - most of us leave our photos on our computers or phones, and just let them stay there, piling up and sometimes even lose them in the digital jungle. It can be quite overwhelming when you have thousands of thousands of photos just sitting there, because where do you start?

Well, I’m as bad as anyone when it comes to this, so for now I’m just going to refer you to the lovely Sara’s blog where she talks about good ways to organise photos - have a look here.

I do, however, have some cool tips on what you can do with your photos instead of just printing them and let them stay in a box. There are lots of fun and creative things you can do, and here are a few things I’ve done with some of my photos:

Tape it!

I do like frames, but often I find them too bulky, or I’m too scared of ruining the wall when hammering in the nails (I know, it’s pathetic…), or just can’t be bothered with hanging up big frames that I might not want in that place in a year or so. So after ordering my prints, often in different sizes (for example from photobox), I tape them up on the wall, just as they are. 

This way they’re easy to move around, and won’t have to worry about big frames, nails, etc.

You can also mix the photos up with drawings, cards or other things, to make the whole display a bit more interesting. (like the below heart art card from my friend / designer / illustrator Becky - who you can find here!)

Stickers!

I think I love these stickers as much as the kids! I got mine from moo but there are other places you can get them from. 

The kids love playing with them; my youngest has put stickers of his sisters and cousins on the side of his bed so he can see them every time it’s time to change nappy. I’ve put some on top of some wall stickers, and there’s lots of other fun things you can do with them.

Note book / photo journal

For her birthday, I gave my eldest daughter a note book with photos from throughout the year, with space underneath where she could add her own text. Although it was one of the smallest gifts she got, it seemed to be the favourite! 

I bought it on photobox and I’m planning to get them again for my other daughter next year.

Add text

Another way to make your photos a bit interesting is to add text. If you’ve got software like Photoshop etc, it’s easy to add something like a name and perhaps date of birth / date of event, or if you don’t have the software you can paint or write something by hand. 

In my son’s room there is a photo of his little newborn feet along with his name and date of birth. We also have a frame with a hand-drawn card in the middle with our family’s last name. 

I hope you liked these tips - there are lots more of course, but these are a few of my favourites!


5 tips for photographing your baby

Taking photos of our babies is something most of us can’t get enough of - I remember having to keep backing up my iPhone for more storage due to the constant snapping! If you’re looking for some tips on how to take better photos of your baby (whichever camera you use), here are five of my best tips:

Light 

This is really important! Try to use natural light whenever possible, and turn off any lights you might have on. If it’s a bit dark, you can almost always get good enough light next to a window. If it’s sunny, cover the window with a light sheet or curtain to avoid any harsh shadows. 

Also, avoid using flash as it can give harsh shadows and can often make your baby squint or get upset.

Bonus tip: If your baby is a deep sleeper, and if the room is fairly bright, open up the curtains for a little bit (once baby’s in a deep sleep) to get some natural light photos of him/her whilst sleeping. 

Details

Don’t forget the little details - hands, feet, the hair, chubby legs - things that will change quickly. Get in close and remember using good light! (see point above)

Contrasts

When they’re tiny, everything else seems so big in contrast! Make sure you take some photos emphasising this, for example daddy holding baby’s hand, baby sleeping next to their teddy, or lying in the middle of a big bed.

Props

Include things that are important for you and that you’d want to remember, like the blanket grandma made or baby’s first teddy. 

Move down

Don’t take all photos standing up, make sure to get some shots taken from your baby’s level. For example if baby’s lying on a bed, move down so you’re on the same level as your baby and take the photo from the side.

I hope you’ll find these tips useful! 


4 tips for Father’s Day

With Father’s Day just a few weeks away (19 June), I wanted to share a few gift ideas. These are all tried and tested, and have all made brilliant gifts. So here you go, my top four gift ideas for Father’s Day:

Personalised t-shirt

Last year I had a t-shirt printed with one of the kids drawings - this was greatly appreciated and something that has been worn lots of times. I got the t-shirt from notonthehighstreet: https://www.notonthehighstreet.com/lukedrewthis

Home made photo slide show

This is a bit more time consuming, but really worth it in the end! Put together a ‘movie’ of photos of your kids (and the whole family) together with a favourite song in the background. You could even add video clips to make it even better. I’ve used iMovie for this, but if you have a look online there are other ways you could do this such as www.animoto.com or magisto.com. (Some of the online sites gives you a free trial as well)

‘Tickets’ or ‘voucher’

This is both personal, cute and absolutely free! Get the kids (if old enough) to draw / design tickets offering dad something special from his children, preferably something they’ve practiced and put some effort in, like a concert, play or neck & foot massage. (This is also a good way to keep the kids busy and excited in their preparations!)

Calendar

Even though it’s mid-way through the year, a calendar with family photos is still a great option as you usually can set the start month to any month you want. I’ve bought desk calendars from www.photobox.com

Hope you found this helpful - in the end of the day it’s the thought that counts, and as long as dad gets to spend a bit quality time with his kids, anything else should probably be seen a bonus! :)


5 ways to get natural photos of your children

When we take photos of our kids we usually ask them to smile, which when you think about it, stops them from what they’re doing, meaning you’re not actually capturing what you found interesting in the first place!

So if you want more natural looking photos of your children, and still get a good photo, here are a few tips: 

1. Sneak up on them! Or, if that feels a bit weird, just don’t say anything when you take the photo - let them get on with whatever they’re doing. Most of the time they won’t even notice you’re there with the camera if they’re really engrossed in something.

2. When they’re interacting with their siblings or friends - catch them when they’re in the middle of a conversation (which usually can be quite entertaining and imaginative) and capture their expressions.

3. Capture the details. Focus on the too big shoes they’re wearing, or the toy they’re holding in their hand. Make that object your main focus, and don’t worry about including all of your child.

4. Take the photo from a different perspective. For example from above, to get a different perspective and capture in more detail what your child is doing.

5. Capture your child doing something that’s typical for them right now - my son for example, had a phase where he wanted to put stuff through the mailbox (like keys!!). It’s easy to forget these things as they grow older.

Why don’t you try some of these ideas today - fancy DSLR or your iPhone - it doesn’t matter!

Have a great weekend! x


He’ll always be my baby…

I know he’s nearly two and a half. He’s learning stuff every week, and it’s amazing. He wants to do things himself - put the cereal in his bowl (which has to be the right colour, of course), open the car door, get snacks from the fridge, flush the toilet… Things gets messy, or sometimes slightly un-safe, and it’s not always easy to know when to let him do things without help. 

His speech is starting to become really good - he can count, knows a few colours, tell his sisters off, and tell me what he did at nursery (sort of!).

He’s basically growing up. Which is amazing, and I’m so proud of him. But I do find it really hard at the same time. In a lot of ways, for me, he’ll always be my baby… ❤




Guest blog post - ‘Perfection’

I recently had the pleasure to be a guest blogger over at Olivia Horne’s blog, in one of her ‘Mama talks’ blog series. Olivia is a Happiness Coach for mums, and lives in Chiswick, west London. The theme was Perfection, and in the post I talk about how we sometimes find it hard to live up to the picture of how our lives ‘should’ be, and how we ‘should’ be; and that perhaps it’s just better to embrace the imperfections of our lives.

Have a read here - I’d love to hear your feedback! Do you sometimes feel that the pressure is too big?


Father’s Day gift ideas

Generally, what most dads want for Father’s Day is a nice day spent with the family, perhaps a meal somewhere nice and a hand-drawn card from the children. But if you want to do something extra special, here are three photo-related ideas which I’m sure would be much appreciated!

  • A voucher for an in-home family shoot - you might have thought about it for a while but not really got around to organise it - here’s your opportunity! 
  • Portraits of your children - I’ll visit you in your home or in a park to take some natural looking photos of your children, which you then can give away digitally or beautifully printed on Father’s Day. Bound to be a hit.
  • A voucher for headshots / portraits - if he needs updated headshots for his business, this would make a great gift!

I’m happy to discuss options or ideas that you might have too - get in touch on info@carinthakrar.com or give me call on 07726 136 885 and I’d be happy to discuss!



Two little boys and their mum

For one of my recent shoots, I photographed Jo and her two boys in their Richmond home. I spent some time with them having their lunch, playing in the garden and having a bit of story time. 

To have photos taken with yourself included in them, interacting with your children is something I would definitely recommend to anyone! 




The most adorable twins…

Just a few weeks ago, I met Triin and her family in their home in St Margaret’s, for an in-home family session. Their twins, a boy and a girl, were super-sweet and to a beginning, quite curious about the stranger with the camera :) 

Here I’m sharing some of my favourite photos from the shoot - if you like them and want a similar session for your own family, just get in touch on info@carinthakrar.com!


Mother’s Day offer

With Mother’s Day not far off (shouldn’t every day really be Mother’s Day though…?) I’m offering a fantastic deal which would make a great gift, as well as a treat for yourself. As a mum, I know we’re often the ones taking most of the family pictures (ok, I know I’m generalising here but it’s often true!) meaning we’re not that often in them. Imagine your kids growing up and looking back at their childhood photos, with someone (fairly!) important person being absent in most of them. 

Well, this spring I’m offering a limited dates only ‘mama & me’ in-home session: a photo session of just mum and her kids, in the home, playing, eating, reading or whatever else they usually get up to together. The session is around 30 minutes and includes ten (!) high resolution photos, with the option to purchase more.

A great gift, but also a fantastic treat for yourself! Be quick and book today on info@carinthakrar.com!



Photography gift vouchers!

There are times when you might struggle to think of a good present - baby showers, the birth of your friend’s first baby, a christening, a birthday… Often we end up buying department store vouchers and whilst that’s useful, they can be a bit anonymous and obvious. 

A great alternative to this is photography vouchers - why not get together with some friends or family members and give away a gift voucher for an in-home photo session? You decide what value to add to it and if needed, the receiver just tops up to whichever package they want. It’s valid for six months so there’s lots of time to plan when to have the shoot. It’s unique, it’s unexpected and it’s bound to be well received! 

Get in touch to find out more, or to purchase a gift voucher today!


Three good reasons to have an in-home photo session

You probably have lots of snapshots from around your house, so when considering having family photos taken, why would an in-home shoot be a good idea? Surely the photos will look prettier and more professional if taken in a studio or a lovely park? Well, I’m sure you would get great pictures there too but I believe an in-home photo session is something definitely worth considering! Below I’m listing my top reasons:

1. Your home is where you live your life. It’s full of things that makes you family what it is - the furniture, the kids’ drawings on the walls, the bookshelf, the baby changing unit… To be able to include this in your family photos, gives you a stronger connection to your pictures and helps you remember things that might have been completely forgotten in the years to come. Your home makes an amazing backdrop to your photos!

2. It’s the place where you can be totally yourself, and where you’re the most comfortable. You won’t have to worry about what the studio is going to be like with all its light, or if it’s going to be too windy for that park shoot. And you won’t even have to go anywhere!

3. ‘Natural’ props! Your house is full of things which can be included in your photos - imagine capturing the moments of you combing your child’s hair, feeding your baby or reading a story to your toddler. Beautiful moments of your children playing with their favourite toys, lining up their cars, or getting completely messy at snack time. These are the moments worth capturing!

And remember - even if you have lots of photos already taken in your home, how many of them would you really consider printing and putting in a frame? And how many of them include all of you? 

For more information on in-home photo sessions, please email me on info@carinthakrar.com - I’d be really happy to talk about how I can help you!


A lifestyle headshot session

I recently had the pleasure to take some photos of a very inspirational woman who runs a children’s music group in Chiswick, west London. The session took place in her home, and to create a natural, storytelling feel to the photos, we included her guitar in some of the pictures. 

The combination of classic headshots along with storytelling portrait shots, gave a lovely set of photos which can be used for both business and personal use. 

To find out more about these sessions, please email me on info@carinthakrar.com.


The importance of getting in the frame

How many photos do you have of your kids, or of your kids and your partner? If you’re anything like me you’ll have tons of them, and that’s all great - but in how many of them do you feature? Do you sometimes feel like when flicking through the photos that you’re not in as many as you probably should, or maybe even thinking that it doesn’t really matter that you’re not?

It’s not easy to become a part of the photos - often you have to ask someone else (and often there might not be anyone to ask at all!), or try to take a crammed family selfie in which you for once all will be in. And sometimes you might not even feel like being in the pictures - maybe you don’t feel dressed up enough, or having ‘bad’ hair, or other reasons which really doesn’t matter that much. 

What’s important is that you do get in the frame - because when your kids in the years to come are looking back on their childhood photos, and hardly see their parents in any of them, both you and them will probably feel it’s a real shame you weren’t in them more than you were. Your kids don’t care if you had messy hair or food stains on your top - they’d just want to know what you looked like at the different stages of their childhood, and to see how you interacted with them, played with them, laughed with them. Memories do fade, so having photos which helps you remember is something I believe everyone should have. 

For information on how I can help you with your family photos, please get in touch!


Valentine’s Cootie Catcher freebie!

Finally the grey & dull month of January is over (yes, it is my least favourite month of the year, apart from my son having his birthday then!) and we’re heading in to the slightly shorter month of February, with Valentine’s Day being one of the highlights. My children loves this day, and I try to make it a bit special for the whole family with decorations, little gifts and an extra special breakfast. It’s definitely become more of a family celebration for us rather than a ‘romantic’ day (and I don’t really mind!). 

This year I want to share something I have designed for you all out there, and especially your little ones! With this cootie catcher you can have fun together with your children, or just let the children play with it on their own between each other. I used to love these as a child, and I hope this Valentine it will bring some joy for you too!

There are two downloads, one which already is coloured in which you can download HERE, and one that you can colour in yourself (and also save some printing ink!), which you can download right HERE.

Enjoy! xx

PS. I’d love to hear what you think - comments or emails would be super appreciated! :)


Model call - headshots

Are you running your own business and need a headshot for your website, social media and other marketing?

I have two free spaces for an in-home headshot photo session, which needs to take place before March 4th, on a weekday (Wednesday - Friday). Session includes one complimentary high resolution photo. If you are interested, please get in touch on info@carinthakrar.com.



3 good reasons to book an in-home newborn photo session

When you’re a new parent your life suddenly changes completely. You’ve got a new little person that you’re responsible for, and your days often goes by in a blink (or a blur…). Booking a photo session is probably the last thing on your mind, quite understandably! But there are a few pretty good reasons to have an in-home newborn session - these are my top three:

1. With the risk of sounding like a cliche; Time flies. The newborn days goes by so fast, and the days of tiny babygrows, the soft skin, those baby yawns and other adorable things that’s part of those first few weeks, won’t last forever. Have it captured before this time passes.

2. An in-home newborn lifestyle session includes the whole family (as well as just your baby), in the place you’re spending most of your time - your home. There’s no need to stress about getting ready, leaving the house or even dress up. I’ll capture your new little family just as you are, telling your story. Cuddles, feeds, changing, and everything in between. 

3. Even though you’ll probably have lots of snapshots taken with your phone, it can’t quite compare with a professional’s work, who in a combination of composition, light and artistic eye can get the best possible captures of your tiny one.

An in-home lifestyle newborn session also doesn’t need to take place in the first 10 days, as there’s no posing or need for the baby to be asleep. So, if this sounds like something for you, or perhaps someone close to you, get in touch and let me help you!

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