The Darlings #01

As any creative knows, when your business is birthed from an original hobby, it’s important to keep your passion fresh. Thankfully, the majority of my work is in line with my love of family, fun and creativity so I don’t have to reignite it often. But every now and then I get an idea and if I can’t incorporate it into one of my client’s sessions,  it sits with me until I bring it to pass.  This project “The Darlings” is one of those ideas.. it’s all about the beauty of friendships, a big bunch of girls, fun things they love, pretty hair and dresses, and sunlight in the garden to backdrop it all. My limitations for the sessions were one location per session, only 30-60 minutes to shoot group shots and a portrait each with a limited number of props and inclusions.  They say you’re crazy to work with kids and animals, but I think it’s one of the best combos out there! Each of the girls involved will receive a beautiful portrait of their own to keep forever. I’m thinking I’ll do more of these in the future, we had such a blast together. I met over 50 gorgeous girls in three different sessions and each one was as beautiful as the next!  Over the next three days I’ll showcase each session. This is the first.  Enjoy! x

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Let’s explore! [family photography]

It’s been a little drizzly in South East Qld this week (poor long weekend campers!) but hopefully the next few days will bring more weather like the skies at this gorgeous session from a few weeks ago.  There is something quite magical about being by the sea.  My own little family has a favourite past-time of heading to the nearest river, seaside or ocean to relax and explore. No goal in mind but to walk,  talk, breath the fresh air and see what gems of nature we find.  From toddlers to teens (and the parents too) it’s nice to get away from the hustle and bustle, leave the technology in the car and get your toes a little dirty. The outdoors have a wonderful way of soothing the tiredest and grumpiest of hearts. Hope you have an amazing weekend!  Maddie xx

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Bushwalking love [brisbane family photography]

When I was in highschool I always loved writing, particularly story telling. And although it’s not words and letters as much these days, I love that for me, when I photograph families, I am STILL telling stories.

Instead of a pen and paper (or keyboard), it’s a camera. And instead of characters and plots, it’s you and your world. But it’s still the chance to write a story of a tale that exists – and to bring my eye and my creativity, wrapped around the story of your life.  And that, brings me a happy heart.

Recently I followed this sweet family on a bushwalking adventure under the Glasshouse Mountains. It’s their favourite space and it’s what they do together every week. Their sweet little girl may just enjoy the ride today, but when she is old enough to ask to go, she’ll be able to see the fun they were having – from the very beginning. Bliss!  Enjoy x

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our happy places [brisbane family photography]

The thing that I love most about lifestyle family portraits, is that there are no rules. You can make your session as simple or creative as you like. You get to wear the things you love (whether thats jeans & T’s or something quirky or extravagant). You can have your session in a place you adore (perhaps that’s your wonderful home or maybe somewhere that you’ve been hoping to visit together for months). You get to do the things you love to do together (from pancakes at your kitchen bench for breaky, to visiting the organic markets, to an adventure at a sideshow alley). YOU get to choose. And you get to have a great time as a little family where the focus is only on having a fun together. It doesn’t matter if it’s just a mum and daughter, or parents with a wild big brood of kids, whatever your story is, that’s what I want to discover. It’s about you, being you.

This sweet family desired to have their saturday morning family tradition captured.  When they are all up and dressed, they head off for a walk together to their local reserve. They explore and have fun. They watch the ducks swim and find cool sticks and rocks to play games with. They laugh and giggle together. Then they finish their stroll with babycinos and coffees at their favourite local cafe.  It’s sweet, pure fun at it’s simplist.  It’s a story that is theirs, memories that will remind these parents of the time when their little ones were young. And as the years pass, they can share these beautiful moments with their children – showing them the very beginnings of their family traditions.  It’s family.  It’s good fun.  I love it x Maddie

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Sugar and spice [brisbane newborn photography]

When I had my own first baby four years ago my husband and I had wanted the gender to be a surprise. So when our baby was born, we were thrilled to realise we had a delightful little girl in our arms (what we secretly had wanted!).   But like many mums, I had a small thought that I would endeavour not to overdo the ‘traditional pink’ look in the clothing department. Within a few weeks though, we were inundated with pink gifts, pink clothes, pink hats and pink shoes. And the funny thing was, I soon realised, that my little girl looked absolutely ADORABLE in pink!  I tried red and blue and yellow and nothing made her look as rosy and sweet as pink did.  But I loved it. So she went on to spend the next few years fashioning various shades of wonderful pink and I enjoyed every second of it!

So far this year, my newborn sessions this year have been a good mix of both boys and girls. But I thought I’d share a real girly one from earlier this year that I’ve been meaning to post. This is adorable little Poppy with her mum and dad. I met them a few months ago and Poppy certainly suited the sweetness of pink. Her mum has done an amazing job creating her nursery too and the whole session was truly wonderful. We all had a relaxing time spending the morning at their family home, a little while inside the nursery and then some time out in the garden.  So cute!

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merry christmas & a little giveaway

Just a quick but meaningful note to wish you all a wonderful Christmas and all the best for the beginning of the New Year! 2012 has been an amazing (and full!) year for me and as I begin my focus primarily on portraits, I am very excited to start a year of even more wonderful people stories. A special and beautiful thank you to all of my portrait, wedding and commercial clients from this year, it has been TRULY delightful to meet each and every one of you. I feel honored that you let me into the most precious moments of your lives and allowed me to capture your story xx  so thank you xx

Also, in the spirit of giving, I would like to offer a giveaway!  I cherish the fact that my photography surrounds me with some of the most beautiful times in life and I know that for many others this isn’t the case. Be in their work industry or just the hard seasons of life.  So for this reason I would love to give away one session as a sweet etta photography gift, to pass on the love. The session can be any type – pregnancy, newborn, baby, child, family, couple, fashion portfolio or individual.  It will include a 30-60 minute session in North Brisbane during January, an online private gallery of 20 images, two linen print display sets and a disc of your ten favourite digital images (valued over $500).  To enter the draw, please leave a sweet comment of any sort below and make sure you include your first name and email (only your first name and comment will show below).  I will draw a winner by RANDOM selection from comments at 12pm on Christmas Eve (noon) and then email the lucky person/people to let them know.  All the best to you and I hope this will bring a little piece of joy to someone’s world who truly needs it xx

As I close off for 2012, I send much love to all and also ask that you too do something kind for a stranger this Christmas – just for the sake of old fashioned goodness!  Pay for a strangers fuel. Cook your neighbour a meal.  Tell someone in customer service what a great job they are doing. Let a car into your lane even if it means you’ll miss the lights.  It keeps your heart rather happy and you never know whose world you may change.  So for now farewell,  I will be returning to work on January 7th and will respond to all emails in date order on my return.  See you in 2013!  x  Maddie

Louise & Ryan (Bangalow Wedding)

I met Ryan and Louise earlier this year and clicked with them from the moment we met (as I do with all my lovely couples!). Hearing them talk about their wedding plans and how they wanted their guests to experience the day was exciting to my love of all things fun, vintage, quirky and creative.  At the time they were both living in Perth, so the next time I saw them was mid year for their engagement session (see it here as featured on Polka Dot Bride!). After the session, I knew the time we spent together was just a taste of the fun I would have capturing their wedding day love story.
Their wedding (10/11/12) was to be held in the region behind Byron Bay, within the quaint town of Bangalow.   After a simple ceremony under the trees, the reception was planned to be an outdoor celebration with games on the lawn and an evening under the stars and pretty lights. However when nature decided it was meant to be a rainy day, Louise and Ryan went with the flow, and quickly took their ideas and recreated it all inside a quaint hall.  This would have been no mean feat considering the detail of their day, but they had amazing family and friends who helped move their outdoor wedding celebration to an indoor one – and it still had the perfect atmosphere!
With one of my talented second shooters Josh Weier by my side, we captured their perfect day and the story that was their wedding.  We truly had a blast with them and enjoyed every minute!  From the delightful details in atmosphere, to the activities for guests, through to the absolutely delicious catering by Fig Tree Restaurant (and Louise’s mum’s special dessert bar!) everything had been thought of.  I especially loved watching the relationships between guests – beautiful speeches, thoughtful words and loads of fun dancing!  As quite the travelling duo, at present Louise and Ryan are crossing the Nullarbor and heading to Brisbane.  I can’t wait to see them in January before they then begin an eight month trip to Africa, America and Europe – loads of fun adventures ahead!  I hope you enjoy this peek at their day x Maddie
Note: I am no longer shooting large weddings from Jan 2013 but am available for intimate ceremonies, registry weddings and vow renewals. I also specialise in family portraits, individual sessions and couples session, so if you like what you see, please drop me a line and I would love to chat x

 





simple, sweet love [brisbane couples portraits]

Lately I’ve had an increase in couple session bookings which has been fun to plan and prepare for. It’s exciting for me to meet new, wonderful couples – there is nothing quite like capturing the loveliness of love. The awesome thing is that this type of shoot doesn’t just have to JUST be for engaged couples. I’ve captured the love of dating couples, couples celebrating their anniversary, special birthday sessions and even simple, private vow renewals.
This engagement shoot session was used as a basis for a creative wedding invitation design, and the styling was pure and simple. It was with my favourite couple models (aka. my sister and her fiance!) and there wasn’t a great deal of planning or props. A boy and a girl in love. A sheet. The sun. And a pretty forest by a river. Simple, sweet love.
When enquiring about couple portrait sessions, I’m often asked what to do or where to go for the shoot and as an added complimentary service to you, if you would like it, I love to offer my suggestions to help make your image collection unique and perfectly about you. I’ll ask you a few questions about yourselves and then I’ll provide you with a fun list of ideas to inspire you as we plan your session. Or as always, you can come to me with your ideas and I’m happy to run with those too!  I’m looking forward to sharing more love story images in the next few months. Enjoy.