Surviving a Family Photoshoot by TaraD

How to make your next family photo session a stress free one.

Family photos are truly timeless and such a great keepsake for future generations.  Getting the family together to take those perfect portraits can turn into chaos if not approached correctly. There is usually a lot more to consider when it comes to a family photoshoot since there are members of all ages, which means that there is some extra coordination involved.

Below are some family photoshoot ideas and tips to keep you and your loved ones calm and smiling the whole way through.

1. Timing is everything. If you have younger children involved in the shoot, try and arrange the photoshoot at a time when they would be well rested. A rested child makes for happy photos. On that note, make sure that all family members have gotten enough sleep the night before as this helps with the fun and relaxation aspects of the session.

2. Dos and don’ts of bribery. Get your family excited about the photoshoot instead of offering a reward in return for their cooperation. This tends to lead to forced smiles and an irritated bunch of people. If you do have small children coming along it’s not a bad idea to give the photographer some bribery options in the form of toys or small food items to make those difficult moments a little easier.

3. Relinquish control. As much as you’ll want to direct your children on where to stand and how to pose, it’s best to leave that to the photographer as they know what works best. Not having this pressure will also make you feel more relaxed.

4. It’s not just about the posing. The best photos happen when you’re having fun so joke and play with your children, hold your partner’s hand and just let the moents happen. 

5. Plan ahead. Discuss all of your requirements with your photographer beforehand so that the family photo session can just flow. Let your photographer know if you want specific pictures taken. 

6. Keep those sugars levels up. If everyone is well fed, the photoshoot will also run a loot smooter. It’s also not a bad idea to take a few snacks and some water along for these who might need it. 

Enjoy capturing you memories.

Read more

Tips for Beautiful Fall or Winter Photos by TaraD

There is a special kind of magic that comes with outdoor, winter photo sessions. The snow lightly falling and icicles hanging from the branches create a lovely backdrop for any photo session. Here are some tips to make your winter or fall photo sessions go smoothly.

  1. Dress warmly. You will be surprised at how often this is overlooked. Since you’ll be standing outside for a long period of time, short sleeves, thin fabrics, and open toe shoes will not be comfortable for very long. Shivering makes it hard to look happy and pose properly.

 

  1. Wear sunscreen. Protecting your skin should be a priority throughout the year, not just in summer. Use a good moisturizer to protect your skin from chilly winds.

 

  1. Watch the weather. Warmer days may seem more pleasant but melting snow can change the entire look of your backdrop. If you are looking for light snow flurries, try and keep an eye on the weather forecast to make sure that you don’t end up with melting or heavy snow.

 

  1. Be flexible. If the weather isn’t exactly what you had hoped for, see if you can still make the photo session work. If you are however scheduling this session in advance, you may just have to work with the weather on that particular day.

 

  1. Incorporate color. Even though fall and winter have some amazing colors to work with, why not wear a splash of color to really stand out in your photos? For example, vibrant shades of blues and greens look amazing amongst crunchy brown leaves.

 

  1. Plan your day. Taking your photos just after the sun rises or just before it sets will provide you with amazing lighting so try and plan your session around those times.

Take some hot tea or coffee along to make your photo session even more enjoyable and get ready for some beautiful results.

 

Read more

And then there were four :)….. by TaraD

So most of you know by now we have been blessed with another beautiful boy!

Dáithí arrived at the end of May on a Tuesday which was really good of him not to interrupt a wedding day! 🙂

All went really well and now our home and our hearts are fuller and life is just that bit crazier! Who would have thought that could be possible?

I have to laugh when I get asked CONSTANTLY is he good? What defines a good baby? One that is happy and healthy and eats and poops regularly?

Does he sleep? Yes of course he does, but does he also wake? Well yes I would be worried if he didn’t wake up for a feed, a cuddle and some play time!

I don’t mind being woke up at 3 am and seeing the amazing satisfaction and pleasure that something as simple as a clean bum and a feed brings to him, makes it all worthwhile. He isn’t asking for much 🙂 His smile could make even the grumpiest person at 3am forget why they were ever grumpy!

So for all the new mums that may stumble across this post, keep doing what you are doing, stock up on coffee (as that helps when you are having a particularly tired day!) and remember that you are AMAZING!

 

 

Read more

Celebrating the men in our lives by TaraD

This weekend we are celebrating the men in our lives.

The one’s who have put plaster’s on scraped knees, built tree houses, cooked dinners, taught skills from tying shoe laces to writing your name. The men who are proud of their children when they achieve a new goal no matter how big or small that goal is.

The men who are also there to pick us up when we fall.
IMG_3623

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am going to share something personal here…

Last week we paid tribute to my grandad and at his funeral I was given some photographs of my father who passed away when I was a child. It is a school photograph so he is roughly the same age as our son Cailean is now and the first thing I thought of is ‘that looks like Cailean’.
It gave a sense of comfort holding a piece of paper with an image printed on it from what must be 55 or more years ago. I wonder did the person taking that picture then realise how precious and valuable that image would be some 50 plus years later? It is an image that in another 10 years time I will show to Cailean and in 20 years time who knows he may show his son or daughter.

2016-06-15_0002

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know it isn’t as easy for others to photograph their families and capture those magic moments (otherwise I would be out of business a long time ago lol!). I often get asked by people, “how can I stop them being blurred, under/over exposed” etc and I suggest that they come on one of our workshops to learn how to shoot like a pro lol.

But for those of you who do want a quick and fun selection of images to capture the love between father and child, I want to offer something to you…

Daddy and me mini sessions will be available throughout the months of June and July at a massively reduced fee of €129 (usually €200). As this is about giving back and not about making money (we are only covering our time) 20% of every shoot will also be going to the fantastic CUH charity.  We have been working with this charity recently and I can tell you that it is a fantastic service offering “a wide range of life changing and life saving equipment and services for patients attending Cork University Hospital”.
Both Dave and myself are happy to support in any way we can and we hope that our mini sessions can help raise some much needed funds for the charity.
Daddy and me

 

 

 

 

 

To book a shoot contact us on: 085 1555060 or 085 1196528
email info@taradonoghuephotography.com
To buy a gift voucher for that special man click here… 

Finally to the men in my life who have influenced who I am today, my dad and my grandad I miss you today and always.

To my own husband, Dave who doesn’t always get enough praise for what he does day in and day out. Thank  you I couldn’t do it without you!

To all the dad’s today, we thank you, we love you and wish you a very Happy Father’s Day….. x

Read more

Rain gives us life! by TaraD

Boy running in the rain

Ok so I think we are all getting a little frustrated with the Irish weather. It’s april and we really are having four seasons in one day!

Snow in the morning, flooding in the afternoon, a blast of sunshine and even storms brewing at night.
The kids want to get out to play, the adults want to get out for a walk or do some jobs in the garden instead it is a daily challenge to get from the house to the car without getting saturated!!!
It brings everyone’s mood down, makes us all feel a bit rubbish unless of course you are a 4.5 year old!

As many of you might have realised, I learn a lot from my son. Looking at the world through a child’s eyes is an art we as adults loose.

Let’s look at this crazy weather from a child’s perspective…
Anytime that we look out and it’s raining, Cailean says it’s ok “Rain gives us life”. It’s that simple!
So instead of complaining and feeling sorry that we aren’t sitting on a beach right now, I will look at the world through my son’s eyes. Yes Cailean rain does give us life and our grass wouldn’t grow as easily as it does in a drier climate. Our country quite simply wouldn’t be as beautiful as it is if it didn’t rain so much! So instead of complaining, I will pass on another little piece of wisdom I once heard. “There is no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes!” So lets throw on our wellies and waterproofs and make every day count!

Read more

Letters to Cailean, “Stay you”… by TaraD

I have always encouraged you to draw outside the lines, to think outside the box and nurture the creative streak that you have. This means that others may find you “different” and you ALWAYS have to remember that being different is AMAZING! The most interesting people I know are “different”.
What fun is it to follow the herd? It’s boring spending your life in others shadows. So continue to “invent” ways to travel to space, tools to make your day easier, robots to clean your room (I would love if you could organise that LOL). All the inventions that you tell me about daily are amazing for your age. I hope you always have that passion of figuring out how to make the impossible possible. I still try it at 32, constantly questioning but “What if?”
Sometimes it works and I get to try amazing things and other times it doesn’t and I learn from those experiences.
You are an incredibly strong individual. You are making your way in this challenging world and I can already see you developing some pretty smart coping mechanisms in dealing with your peers who are questioning where you “fit in”.
Stay you little man and always remember, “when you follow the herd, you are bound to step in sh*t!” 🙂

Love mum xxxx12832308_10156627771180261_1842384485803187863_n

Read more

Letters to Cailean – Tara’s new year project by TaraD

So as we approach back to school and work, planning multiple goals and new year resolutions (that are often certain to fail), is the norm at this time of year.

Many of us feel pretty shattered from late nights of partying (I wish!). Or if you have been working like us, you may feel delighted to have had such an amazing Christmas working with great people, but you are also looking forward to a few days off and a hot bath to ease the aches and pains. (Having cameras strapped to you for over 30 hours in 3 days makes muscles hurt that you didn’t know you had!).

So back to the resolutions! This year I have decided to do something a little different which combines the two things that I love the most, my family and photography.

I am going to write weekly letters to Cailean (my four year old), with accompanying photographs (which I will also print and NOT LEAVE ON THE COMPUTER FOREVER!)

At the end of it I plan to create a book with the photographs and letters which will be a nice keepsake and reminder of 2016. All going well (now I’m being super ambitious, it may be something I will continue for other years).

I am hoping that one day he may read them and it will give him an insight about life, love and the general day to day chaos that our family is! 🙂 They will be pretty short and sweet, so it isn’t like it will be taking up my already non existent free time 🙂

It is something that I feel will make me focus, give me headspace to take a photo that I am not being paid to take, that is just for me. An image that will record something that I want to take, be it on good days or bad for us to look back on.

I feel that it will encourage me to document our own memories more and as our gift is capturing other people’s stories, why shouldn’t we also be recording our own?

As I have heard many times it is like a painter not wanting to paint his own house or a plumber not fixing his own leaking tap!

So here goes and I am sharing them with you so that I can’t give up easily half way through! 🙂  ….

Dear Cailean,

It’s the start of a new year, 2016, which for many is a time of reflection, planning and setting goals for the coming year.

Usually they include things like:

  • Loosing weight, (which your dad and myself are going to attempt and has already been put off until tomorrow LOL).
  • Save money for holidays, (you have already asked if you can go to see where Santa lives so we better start saving now!).
  • Learn something new, well you do that every day and we also learn from you so you have that one sussed.  The list goes on so I’m sure you get the idea.

Anyway one of my new years resolutions is to write to you, so that one day you can read these and have an insight into what was happening in your mad house and how much we love you 🙂 

Today is a rare day off, we have been working all over the holidays so haven’t got to spend as much time with you as we would like. But we are about to snuggle up in our “cinema” as you call it and watch a movie.

It’s moments like these that make me realise how lucky I am.

 I hope that when you are a grown man you will still want to come and hang out with your parents every now and then 🙂 

Thank you for bringing such life and love to our home.

Lots of love,

Tara (as you only call me mum when you are tired/sick or up to something and trying to get around me!). xxxx

 

 

Read more