Most people book a family photographer in the summer.  They want beautiful bright sunny images of their children running through the fields.  They want to conjure memories of carefree summers, long evenings and warm fun-filled days.  I get it.  I really do. But whilst summer is undoubtadly lovely for outdoor family photography, it’s often harder to get great shots.  The sun is high in the sky and the light is hard and bright.  I always schedule summer family photoshoots last thing in the day – sometimes starting around 7.00pm.  This isn’t always suitable for some families – especially with young children.

Winter really is a lovely time of year for outdoor family photography…  “WHAT?” I hear you shout… but wait, I’ll explain…  I love it for a number of reasons. Let’s face it, This is the UK – you can never guarantee the weather at anytime of year!  So here’s why I regularly schedule family photoshoots during the winter months:

1 – Better Light

First and foremost is the light.  During the winter months, the sun remains low in the sky throughout the day and the light is beautiful and easy to photograph in without hard shadows and harsh light.  This gives more scope for shooting at ay point during the day.  It’s especially good for younger children who may not want to be starting a photo shoot at 7.00pm at night during the summer!

2 – Atmospheric scenery

Bad weather often helps create far more atmospheric photos.  Whilst pouring rain is no fun for anybody, fog, mist, dark grey days and snow, all make great backdrops for more dramatic outdoor family photography! 

3 – Colourful shots

Dark scenery and dreary weather give the opportunity for people in photos to really stand out.  Families and children dressed in bright colours during winter family photo shoots look really good.  The contrast between the bright primary colours and the dark wintery backdrop really help the subject become the total focus of the photograph.

4 – Getting the family together

Summer time is often very busy with holidays, trips and activities. Autumn has Halloween and bonfire night, then the lead up to Christmas means it’s often hard to find a time you can all get together.  January and February, however, are often quieter months.  It’s far more likely you can get your family together for a photoshoot more easily.

5 – Bobble hats and scarves!

I’m a big fan of bobble hats!  I just LOVE a great wintery photograph of somebody wrapped up warm with a great bobble hat!

6 – quiet locations

Some of my favourite locations such as Wandlebury Country Park, Grantchester Meadows or Milton Country Park, are much quieter during the winter months .  This makes a family photo shoot much easier for everyone involved and more relaxing for those being photographed.

7 – A great excuse to snuggle up!

Chilly wintery weather is a great excuse to snuggle up and keep warm with those you love during your family photo shoot.  Connection and emotion shown between family members during a photo shoot make much better family photographs!

8 – Warming up afterwards!

Lastly, but my no means least, is warming up afterwards.  What better excuse is there to grab a hot chocolate and warm up in front of the fire after a great couple of hours outside.

Booking your family photography session

If you’d like some beautiful family portraits, you can find more details about my family sessions here.  If you’re ready to book and would like to secure your session date, please drop me an email on louisafrenchphotography@gmail.com or fill in this form.

Louisa Williams is a family and children’s photographer based near Cambridge and working throughout Cambridgeshire, Suffolk  and the surrounding areas.  You can see more of her current work and enquire about commissions here and can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.