Well, it looks like summer may have arrived and everywhere I look there are families having fun in the sunshine, which has got me thinking more about family photo shoots. I love doing family shoots and don’t do enough of them in my opinion. They have changed a lot in the last few years and more natural shots are taking the place of the setup studio style.

      At Michael Briggs Pictures it is all about having fun with your family, relaxing, getting out and about and engaging in a natural way. As cliche as it sounds, we really do want you to forget we are even there and just have a good time in the most natural way for you.

      One of the reasons I love family shoots so much is (if done in the right way) they are 100% authentic.  Shooting children is the best way to achieve authenticity because; let’s face it kids will not be told what to do and how to pose and if they are it is obvious in the photographs, if they are left in a fun environment, playing and having a good time their personalities come pouring out and the results can be amazing.

      I like to find out a bit about the family I am shooting before the day; what does a day out for your family look like? What characters do we have in the family? Where are your favorite places to relax? I find that when it comes to children having a camera in your hand has a pied piper effect on some children and in a world of smartphones and selfies they are more than happy to pose and pout but once the novelty wears off they relax and that’s when I get the most wonderful shots. Some children are a bit more reserved or shy in front of the camera and in these cases, I give them time to feel at ease and get used to me and the camera, I also find letting them have a look at the camera and explaining how it works helps children to join in. Mum and Dad often feel the most awkward being photographed, they are usually the ones taking the pictures so it feels a bit alien to be in front of the camera. These photos will be your treasured memories for years to come so do what feels natural with your family, enjoy the session, forget about us and you will be fine! It really helps to be somewhere familiar to you, no studio setups for us.

      Living in Leigh on Sea, Essex local favorite locations for family shoots are the beautiful beaches and lush woodland surrounding us. Both perfect settings for a photo shoot with their gorgeous backdrops and space to run around and unwind. The woods offer some amazing rich colour in the autumn and the beach is bright and blue and striking in the summer.

      Family shoots are all about capturing all of the personalities that make your family who they are, turning those everyday moments into everlasting memories.

      Here are some of my favorite shots from family shoots that I have covered, I am looking forward to sharing some more with you this summer!