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Photography tips from an expat expert


No prizes for guessing why we chose Kate Griffith to be one of the judges of this year’s Expat Living Photo Competition (see page 181). Kate is an Associate-level Master Photographer, and was recently named the Best Singapore Portrait and Family Photographer 2012 by Singapore Tatler, as recommended by readers. She’s also creative director of Littleones Photography. Here she gives some insights into the art of photographing families.

What’s the secret to children’s and family portrait photography?

I think anyone can take a photograph – but not everyone can capture a moment. My aim is to capture precious moments of families together in a candid and natural way. The most important thing to me as a professional photographer is to get to know and capture the real person – the personality or “true essence” – in a way that they can relate to when they view their photographs.

What’s the best part of the job?

I feel proud and honoured to be included in special moments in people’s lives and to be able to capture that in a treasured photograph, whether it’s that first “bump” picture, the first pictures of a newborn, tender moments between a little brother and sister, or a granny’s first picture with her grandchild.           

We’ve photographed all kinds of family milestones: graduation, 18th and 21st birthdays, families reunited from all over the globe, and also those “last” family pictures before the children spread their wings and head off to explore the world.

And the hardest part?

Portrait photography can be an anxious experience for many parents as well as children, but with some forward planning and advice, the whole family can have a lot of fun. I love getting to know all the new families that come through our doors; no two days are ever the same. It’s essential that clients feel comfortable and relaxed, so we operate a very relaxed and friendly studio that allows our clients to have some beautiful pictures taken but above all enjoy their photo shoot.

How do you keep things fresh?

Photography is constantly evolving and as a professional photographer I like to keep up with the changing times. I love the creativity of photography and can spend hours researching new design concepts for my clients and learning new and exciting Photoshop effects that can be applied to pictures. We are constantly updating our product range to incorporate the latest designs.

Any tips for families looking to get a special portrait done with a photographer?

Having pictures taken is a hugely personal experience and above all you want to feel comfortable in the studio and with the photographer.

Always check the credentials of the photographer you use, and always discuss with them what your expectations are, to avoid any confusion and ensure you get exactly what you want from your photography experience.

Photographers in Singapore vary greatly according to style, professionalism and cost. I would highly recommended visiting the person’s studio, looking at examples of their work and getting a feel for the environment.

Christmas is coming up; does Littleones do special photography sessions for the season?

Yes, we call it “The Littleones Christmas Experience”. There’s Christmas music and mince pies, and that lovely fresh Christmas tree smell as you walk through the door of the studio. Families are encouraged to bring Christmas outfits and Santa hats – you can even dress up your pets! After the session, we book a viewing appointment, when you can spend an evening sitting back and relaxing with some mulled wine and enjoy viewing your pictures. Then we get everything printed and produced all ready to be wrapped and presented on Christmas morning.

Living in Singapore as an expat means you are usually away from your families and friends at this time of year, so Christmas is a great time to show off the family by having some professional photographs taken and sent home. The excitement of Christmas might fade as you get older, but the joy of having a family of your own allows you to relive that excitement year after year.

Littleones Photography
5 Walton Road
6440 7568 | littleonesphotography.com