Skip to main content

Special Portraits of a Special Little Boy


Last year when I was working on my Fellowship panel I put out a casting call for children who would be suitable for the portraits I had in mind. In doing so I received a message to consider this little boy for my project. Unfortunately he was a little young at the time, being under 2 when really 2 was the minimum age I was willing to consider and in the end it turned out that 3 was the youngest I chose to work with. And this was for the simple reason that I needed the children to be able to follow instructions so that I could be very precise in my posing of them. But I couldn't resist this little boy and felt I wanted to work him.


You'll probably notice that the image above looks very similar to the one above it. I couldn't make my mind up which I liked best. To be honest I like the hand placement of the second image and the expression of the first. This is how closely I look at my portraits so try my best to make all elements just so. In each portrait I create I consider both hands and feet along with the lighting, props, clothing and finally the expression. For me the perfect expression without the other elements still just makes for an average shot. Its everything together that makes a great portrait.


I've had experience with children with Downs Syndrome before. As a young teenager I spent a lot of time babysitting one such child who lived down the road from me. I always loved his personality and to be honest never really saw him any different to the other children, apart from he seemed younger than his age. I also regularly photograph children of all sorts of abilities when I do the school photos at Menphys Nursery each autumn and there I've come across some real characters too. So I wanted to see if I could create the sort of portraits I did for my Fellowship panel with a child that might not follow directions as easily.


And it looks like I can. It wasn't as easy as some sessions but it wasn't the most difficult either and that is not to say it was anything to do with Downs Syndrome. He is a young child who has good days and bad like all other children. I've experienced the same difficulties with many other children. It could even go back to the idea that he just seems younger than his age. And not many 2 year olds perform perfectly for these sessions. And we may have been  asking a lot from him. He came to me straight from school which I think could have been part of the problem. Not only were we taking him out of his routine, but we were also asking him to work and be patient after a long day at school. With that in mind, I think he did very well. I got from this session almost everything I was hoping for. The only thing I was missing was the beaming happy face looking directly into the lense. If I managed to get that it would have been a perfect session.


So this is something I'd like to do again. I've been thinking for a while now that I'd like to begin a project that involves all sorts of young children with Downs Syndrome to see just what they can do and show the world that although they have their differences they are still very much the same as other children. In fact, I'd like to show that what makes them different is what also makes them very special.


I look forward to building on this idea of mine and hope to show more in the near future.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Zoe returns, this time with baby!!!

This was a great opportunity for me to experiment in my new studio.  Zoe let me do this with her baby bump a couple of months ago with great success so we took the time again, this time with her new baby.  Some experiments were successful and some where not.  But that comes with the territory.  You can't find new and exciting ways to shoot without finding a few bad ways too.  I'm just greatful that the only mess we needed to clean up in the end was a little wee.  It could have been a whole lot worse.
As usual, Zoe photographs so well and I am again so pleased with the results.  She is going to have some great images to show her daughter when she grows up.  Zoe looks absolutely fantastic, and without any signs of having been pregnant just a few short weeks ago.  Of course, apart from her bump she hardly showed any signs of even being pregnant.  If only all women could be this lucky. 



I had forgotten how easy it is to photograph newborns.  They can't run or crawl away.  Th…

Portraits of a Beautiful Young Woman and Her Guitar

You may remember a while back when I did a casting call looking for teenage boys and girls. Well this is the girl I chose. I had quite a specific look in mind, one which included really long hair. I have always had a thing for long hair. The choice also became quite simple when this young lady put herself forward as she is someone I've been photographing through school for several years and she is a past member of the Hinckley Athletics Club where she has been coached by my husband for nearly as many years. He's always had a soft spot for her, being one of his first members which helped my decision. When I have projects where I want to work with a model rather than a paying client I like to use friends or past clients whenever possible as it enables me to give something to those who have been loyal to me.


Wallis has been a pleasure to work with. She is a stunning, confident young woman. In addition, she could bring props with her that I love. I've been wanting to photogra…

Its a Dog's Life

When life gets tough I always look at dogs or my cats and think how lucky they are. I know not all are treated well but those lucky enough to be in a good home, like the ones who come into my studio, have a really great life. They look so happy and its a wonderful thing to see. 

I honestly love photographing dogs. They are a joy to work with and its almost impossible to produce a bad portrait of a dog which does of course make my life a little easier. I am someone who really needs to love the work I create. I can't help but love the portraits I've created of all the dogs I've photographed over the years. And this shoot was certainly no exception.


I found it a real pleasure using a lighter background this time too. I do often gravitate towards darker looks but seeing as this dog had a light coloured coat I thought I'd produce lighter images. This gave me the chance to use a canvas I painted a couple of years ago but never really used and I absolutely love it now. I don…

Isabelle's Photography Experience

I'm Isabelle Stratford from Redmoor Academy and I've been doing my work experience here at Christina Lauder Photography with my friend Sophie. I'm very interested in photography and currently taking it at GCSE and working here throughout the week has helped me learn several different things about the profession.
 Sophie and I testing out the set up and lighting for prom
Our first day consisted of mainly watching Christina edit some photos and her explain different elements of what she does which then prepared us for the rest of the week when we began doing our own things. She also showed us many of her favourite final edited images that she keeps as samples and told us where she'd got her inspiration from to shoot in the style that she loves. To help her Sophie and I also completed some small tasks that needed doing like filing and clearing up. On Tuesday a client came in for a trial shoot in preparation for a prom so we helped set up for that but then watched as Chris…

4 Merits, 3 Finalists, 2 Awards and a Masters!

This past week at the Societies of Photographers Convention in London was just about perfect in every way. As always I look forward to this event with mixed emotions. As a judge and speaker anxiety levels can be high. And I always know that through both working and socialising it can be an exhausting experience that is often hard to get through. However the high I finish on is simply incredible and worth all the sleepless nights and hard work, in large part due to the incredible people with whom I get to spend this week.

(Photo Credit: Mike McNamee - Sitting on a panel)
(Photo Credit: Mike McNamee - The entire judging team including print handlers)
Being amongst the judging team just gets better and better each year. It is very intimidating sitting on that panel and being resposible for assigning a score and then often providing a critique to substantiate it however the rewarding feeling when doing it well is immense. I know I am still a relatively new judge but hope I can improve each…