Client work / Portraiture

Getting in a twist


Oliver at 6 days old

Introducing Oliver James – OOAK (One of a kind) design by Chris and Tahni.

I first met Tahni in November when her partner, my friend and fellow photographer, Chris introduced us. She was pretty heavily pregnant with their first child and I offered to take some maternity shots for her. Time got away from us due to other commitments and then Oliver came about 12 days early. Suddenly that maternity shoot was looking like being a newborn shoot.


Cue panic.

  • What if I drop him?
  • What if I drop something on him?
  • I’m not going to blind him with my flash am I?
  • What if he pees on me?
  • Or throws up on me?
  • What if he gets a rash from all the cat hair in my house?
  • He’s smaller than my cat…and I haven’t fed the cat yet….
  • What if he explodes or something because I’ve been stuffing my face with peanut butter Lindor balls all morning? (Oh my God they’re so amazing).

Prior to this, the youngest child I’ve professionally photographed was about 3 months. I did photograph my friend Tammy’s kids at the hospital. Kane at 1 day old and Connor at just a few hours old but it wasn’t quite the same thing.


Oliver’s the first newborn that’s been to my house and modelled for me and I must say he was very well behaved, pretty quiet (he didn’t squeal once) and very photogenic. I’m really thrilled with the pictures. He wasn’t too scary. It was a total pleasure to photograph him and I’m very honoured to have had the opportunity to be one of his first official photographers.

Professional shooting aside…

Right about now I’m envisaging a bunch of my old friends and family members collectively thinking things along the lines of  “She hasn’t even metmy kids, let alone photograph them!”.

Well, sorry about that, it’s not personal, it’s not you, it’s me.

I’m not a chubby, wubby, bubby sort of person. Baby talk makes me cringe (especially the word bubby!) – I don’t know how to talk to them (because I don’t like to be condescending to kids) and it’s all very awkward. I’m quite terrified of babies and small children. I get very anxious around them, especially when they make that high pitched noise. I didn’t even hold my nephew until his first birthday and I think that’s just because he thought I was someone else and I’d had some wine.

Yes some are very cute, very photogenic and for some reason most seem to really like me. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s something sadistic… like cats do? I’m not too fussed about feeling this way, it’s just who I am. The only problem is people not realising I feel this way.

For a long time I’ve been incredibly nervous about saying anything because as a photographer it seems to be a given that you’ll photograph kids. It’s probably better for everyone if i admit that personally, it’s not really my thing, (especially as I’ve had some bite and scratch me for the privilege). Luckily there are so many fabulous photographers out there who love every minute of it, as you should too.

For the record, Oli didn’t get a rash, he didn’t go into allergic shock, he didn’t pee on me…he just lay there and looked serene and we got some lovely pictures.



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