Five Reasons To Hire A Family Vacation Photographer

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I had always dreamed of having picture perfect portraits from our travels. But no matter what I do, I am never quite happy with what I eventually shoot. I don't deny I own a good camera and it returns me beautiful memories to last. So much so that many of you had reached out to me privately about the model I use! However, if I could, I would opt for the same camera that many professional photographers carry as opposed to my handy DSLM [Digital Single Lens Mirrorless] camera.

I said "if I could" because those professional DSLR cameras are crazy heavy! I was carrying one of Stephanie's pro lens and was in disbelief by its weight! I already find my DSLM a tad too heavy for my petite frame so I doubt I will ever be able to handle anything more than what I currently own. Unless of course, I no longer need to run after little kids. My children often get whacked by my lens [they are at that height where their head is on the same level as my camera when I sling it on my shoulder] and would end up crying in pain. I cannot imagine what a professional camera might do to them when my mindless mother brain kicks in.

So the next best option to family portraits [with the mommy in the picture] is to hire a local photographer on the trip! There are many photographers in Koh Samui but only Stephanie Hornby  [Facebook | Instagram] stood out to me. 

Only after becoming mom, I realised how tough it is to photograph children. They never stop moving and definitely ain't going to have the patience to pose for you. In any case, candids are the best way to capture the true essence of being a child. Who can I trust to do such a job other than a mother herself?

We had photographers who are singles attempting to shoot Ewan and Faye before. I have to admit I was tempted to take over their jobs to shoot my kids instead. They counted 1, 2, 3 and then my kid would run off instead of smiling for the camera. I would advise them, "Ok now! Shoot! Don't wait!" or "It's ok to shoot my child crying or looking angry because they are just being children. Being them. It is still worth the capture."

"Be Sure To Hire a Photographer Who Is Also A Parent!"

Stephanie has two children aged two and four. She would have had all the practice she needed and know exactly how to coax a temperament. To make the children intrigued, she told them that a bird might fly out of the lens if they looked closely! Oh that sure made my pre-schoolers pay extra attention to what she said. Well of course we know no birds were going to fly out of her camera but Ewan suddenly exclaimed, "Hey I saw the bird!" Oh lucky us! A bird flew past and there we got a smile.

On top of that, her photography experience in London [before moving to Koh Samui] impressed me! She has over ten years’ experience working at the highest level for national and international newspapers and magazines. Coming from a very fast paced, high pressure news environment helps her to focus on delivering the same top quality that took her to the top of her profession.

Clicking on her "London Press" tab, I saw stunning photographs of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Nelson Mandela and Usain Bolt. It would be the highest honour to have my family shot by Stephanie Hornby!

And here, we have her photographing us just before the storm came. I think we only managed 15 minutes of shooting time before the downpour!

Hiring someone who lives and breathes the country, you get to visit places you'd never have gone if you were alone. They would know every nook and cranny, probably secluded and secret, that is perfect for that family shot. To top it all up, you would probably get the best of your holiday when they recommend you the best seafood restaurant or children's playground to hit while you are there! Just like what we experienced with Stephanie.

Oh since the camera is always in my hand, I am always photographing Ewan or Faye or Meyer. I would attempt some wefies with them but it will always make my face look extra large which end up in the trash bin more often than not. Hiring a vacation photographer will have me in the pictures all the time! Not only do I get to be photographed, I get to be photographed with my family as we play and dance and sing!

As an individual who is interested in photography, I get very critical with what I shoot. Sometimes when I don't achieve what I set out to, I get a little cranky. Disappointed and angry with myself too. I remember when I was in Sri Lanka sans kids, I had high expectations of my photographs because well, my children aren't with me so I have all the time to concentrate, art direct and compose. Yet, I find myself overwhelmed by my own expectations and pressure started to kick in. 

Hiring a locally-based vacation photographer, all these stress would be non-existent. It felt kind of free to be without my camera for once as we headed out to the beach with Stephanie. Although I wanted to turn back to grab my camera, just because it felt funny to be going out without it, I resisted and enjoyed our time at the beach as a family.

We get to blow up high-resolution photographs for the wall and have memories of our travels all captured. It's not like my camera cannot do the same. But the feel of memories taken from a professional is just very different. Our compositions and styles are different and so, different essence of the same place and situation will be captured differently as well.

The number of hours I spend editing is crazy. I had skipped many afternoon naps with my children while in Koh Samui, editing photographs so I needn't have a backlog when we return to Singapore. Having Stephanie with us meant, I just sit and wait for these high-quality, true focus and edited pictures come knocking at my mailbox!

Our little Travel companions 
August 2017 - Ewan at 5 years old and Faye at 3 years old 
Click on our Travel tab to read all about our travel tips and tricks

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A stay at home mum, blogging to widen her social life. 
We want to echo the sound of love through our lives to inspire other mothers alike.


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