It seems to be party season for little ones at the moment! I have been inundated with cake smash and Birthday portrait sessions for gorgeous one and two year olds in the first half of this year! It is a good job I absolutely love doing them and what is not to love! Firstly they are amazing fun, high energy and every one gets cake after (a winning combination in my mind)!
Secondly, I don’t think a child changes more than in that first year. I see them as bumps, then beautiful delicate newborns and then they return a year later as sitting, walking, independent little bundles of personality! It is amazing!
Oddly enough, when I chat with parents, this is the session that they most worry about. Their little ones are now mobile, rarely sit still, know their own minds about what they want and don’t want and are quite often teething… which let’s face it, may bring sore gums, temperatures and crankiness! Clients also seem to worry about what their babies should wear, what happens if their child cries or doesn’t like the cake (if it is a cake smash session). One recent client even said she was so worried about the session she considered not coming! She decided to push down her fears and did come, we had a great session, got some amazing photographs and they left with smiles, hugs and delicious cake! This is what she sent me post session:
So let me walk you through how my cake smash/Birthday photography sessions run;
They are divided into multiple sections, this is to give a lovely variety in your images and also allows time for cuddles, feeds and downtime for your little one, helping to prevent them from being overwhelmed.
The first section is always a ‘mini portrait’ session. Some clients like to bring some smart party clothes from home, some prefer to use some of the beautiful, hand made outfits I provide. The set up is very simple, baby focussed and relaxed. We normally agree a colour scheme beforehand and I design a set that has all the gorgeous colours you love and that works with the decor in your home, so when you have these images displayed on your walls everything ties in perfectly together.
Then comes cuddle time… a little downtime and usually something to drink as celebrating your Birthday is thirsty work!
We then have a more relaxed set up, where little ones can bring their favourite teddies and toys. Familiar objects that help them feel calm and secure and I photograph them in a natural and playful way. This is also when we capture one of my favourite shots and it doesn’t matter whether parents prefer their baby au natural and naked or in a little outfit, the teddy set up is always a heart warming favourite. This stage of the photography session also serves another purpose; it allows you baby to relax in this strange environment, to get used to lights flashing and all these new textures before it is cuddle time again and I change the set for the main event!
The Cake Smash! When I meet with parents before the photography session I always go through some tips to help babies relax and enjoy their session. Guiding them in how to encourage all those beautiful cake crumb smiles and to help babies really get into the smashing part!
Now not all babies destroy the cakes… in fact most don’t, which is great for parents as they get to take home one of the fabulous Alison at Alison’s Bakery cakes to enjoy! So don’t be surprised if at first your little one is a little hesitant and unsure of what to do. After all, we are trying to encourage them to be messy, which is not something as parents we tend to do on a regular basis. It doesn’t usually take little ones long to figure out that cake is super squidgy and fun to touch, tastes yummy and many babies love to use their hands and feet to paint the icing!
Of course, aside from the beautiful photographs (of course), the other huge advantage of having your cake smash session with me rather than at home is… you don’t have to do the cleaning up!
… Although, I can’t guarantee that your won’t leave without your fair share of icing hugs and cake crumbs from your little ones… and also aching cheeks from all the laughs we have!
Why not get in touch and we can talk about your baby’s first Birthday celebration portrait photography session. Just click here!