Getting the best from a 15 minute mini-shoot with Mel

Four Sundays every year, I run the £99 mini-shoots in Wimbledon. These 15 minute fast shoots are aimed at families or couples. Every client gains 8-10 beautiful shots. These are professionally edited in both colour and monochrome, making up to 20 negatives in total. These are delivered within 10-14 days of your shoot on a USB key.

 

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I love how some clients come back every single year. It gives their children a chance to get used to one, preferred family photographer. It speeds up the giggles and gains couples like Martyn and Louise great imagery every time. You can read more about why the Worsley family keep coming back in their thank you message here. Some families mix and match their bookings to get a different backdrop each time they come. Spring is often under canopy, Winter more likely to be under shelter. But, if you have been captured before, just remind me to use a new backdrop.

Lots of parents ask for clothing tips and, though I strive not to be prescriptive, my big three tips for a group image with children are below:

  • Choose 4 colours to use across the group so you visually look like a family. So if dad is in jeans and navy and one child in navy skirt and cream and one in cream and denim and mum in something complimentary… you avoid looking like a group who met accidentally in a photograph.
  • Consider avoiding large logo clothing or patterns. Ultimately, you want the giggles and facial expressions to shine and not be dominated by clothing design
  • Layer up! Few parents want wall mounted images of their family in coats and rain jackets. But mini shoots occur in November and early spring. Double layer those vests, shirts, sweaters and bring coats to shrug off last minute. Your youngsters will be far more co operative if they aren’t uncomfortable from cold

 

melwildephotography hd2 children 2016

I pride myself on being a very honest, family photographer. So, I mention in the contract that mini-shooters gain fantastic imagery but the speed has to suit your family. If your child is over 4 years old, or quick to warm up to new, fun people then a mini-shoot will work just fine. If your child has already had a full 90 minute shoot with me and is meeting me for a second or third time, then the mini-shoot will be great.

But, if your child is shy, dislikes cold weather, or if your child is very young and pre language, a fast shoot may not be as great value as it sounds. I don’t believe in coercing youngsters, it can put them off a camera for years. For small children, who don’t yet understand language, a fast shoot with parents  tense about getting those great images, it adds pressure to you all. If one knows in advance that you are all going to feel pressured, a slower 90 minute package is your best bet. In a full shoot, you gain a 30 minute consultation before the day on your choice of location, your children’s ages, stages and interests to build quick rapport. We also chat colour and how that might support composition and links to your location and your group’s clothing.  This bespoke guidance isn’t offered with a fast shoot, though some fast tips are above.

My family gallery gives a great insight to what you gain on a longer shoot. Then we have time to stroll, play and build rapport at a pace better suited to some children. Be honest with yourself about your child and if you book the right session, those images will be stunning.

 

hd family 2 mel wilde photography

Ultimately, it is always for a client to decide which type of shoot will work best for their family. My clients tell me I have a real knack with children. I can get the most cautious or distracted to warm up relatively quickly.  But, think about your child’s temperament and age before booking a fast shoot. Mini-shoots are:

  • non refundable, and dates not alterable
  • specifically scheduled on Sundays in March / April & November
  • not weather dependent. They go ahead in rain, because my location choices always offer shelters to be captured in, if needs be
  • set in colder months of the year, so it pays to layer up on clothing for a cold day
  • not roaming shoots, like long 90 minute shoots. I determine where we will capture you based on light and weather, always with one backdrop
  • designed to capture family & sibling shots quickly, and if children are content to have solo shots then we capture those too

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The Christmas 2018 mini shoots will sell out quickly, as they do every year. Booking super early is advised. The next mini shoots are in November 4th and November 11th 2018. There are only 14 slots each date. If you’d like to book, mail me for a contract via [email protected] or message me on 07725736982. Please note mini shoots are priced at £99 because there are tncs about your imagery possibly being used for marketing, with all subjects anonymised. Full shoots give opportunities to opt out of marketing use and retain full privacy.

The shoots take place in Cannizaro Park on the west side of Wimbledon common. If you have been captured before, I do my best to offer a different backdrop if weather permits. There is meter parking along the road beside the park entrance and on side streets near the Common on Sunday mornings. Parking in the Hotel Du Vin carpark for Cannizaro House is free to those clients who stop for a beverage or a bite to eat before or after their shoot. I look forward to seeing you in front of my lens xx

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