Family Photography Session at Emerald Hill with Doktor’s family

Hello all,

Emerald Hill has been one of my favorite place because of its unique architectural design… I had privilege to photograph some of these historical houses over the years and each and every single one of them are so unique and interesting. So Emerald Hill hold a special place in my heart when it comes to Singapore.

Its Christmas time… Kelly and Matt just moved to Singapore not long ago and wanted to capture this year’s family photos at a location that is uniquely Singapore. For the past 4 years, I have been photographing family outside our studio… many love the unique side of Singapore, be it the leafy Botanic Garden to vibrant color of Emerald Hill to their own space at home. Most of the location of choice generally depict the “space” that the family enjoy and hence the need to preserve part of this memories.

Anyway, when we started the session with Kelly’s family, Sophia (the youngest) decided it is time not to be in the photos… hahaha… I guess this is the most interesting part of my work as winning the trust of the little people is an art all together as there isn’t one fit all solution and I love it when I win their trust. This is the thing that keep me going each and every time… its the fun of interaction.

I love it when clients send me feedback/testimonial… let me assure you… I am not perfect in anyway… I do have clients send me email and tell me they don’t like the pictures… I had 2 this year…

Here is what Kelly wrote me on the email:

Dear Hart,
Thank you so much for the beautiful family photos!  Your calm and laid back attitude, combined with your expertise, really made for a successful photo shoot.  You captured so many split second smiles and moments with our little ones – we will treasure these images forever.
Fondly,
Kelly and Matt Doktor

Here are some images taken on the day:

I wish everyone is well during this festive season.

 

Regards,

Hart

 


Home Session with Veronica

Veronica wanted some images that the family can cherish and wanted to do the session at home as his 10 months old feels the best at home.

The session started about 8am and took a good 40 minutes or so before the little boy feels tired… the shoot went really well and I am happy to see such a warm connection between the parents and the child and it makes recording part of memories for them very rewarding.

Veronica is kind enough to drop be a testimonial which read:

  ‘We loved working with Hart. He has really captured the essence and spirit of our family in his photos. He was also very good in interacting with our 10 month old baby and making him smile!’

I love it when I could make someone laugh and feel warm when looking through the memories of their family through photography. I thank God for such a wonderful gift.

Here are some images I took for Veronica and her families…


Family Portrait Photography – How Long Can You Procrastinate?

How Often Do You Procrastinate?

Lets face it! Most people put off doing important but non-urgent tasks.  They have the intention to do it! However, when the next important and urgent task pops up and the task at hand gets pushed to the bottom of the to-do list!

People are busy these days. Busy with work, home, kids, life, hobbies and the list goes on.

One of the most important thing and never urgent thing to do is to get in the shot with your entire family.

How many occasions have you had time to “stop”? It is unfortunate nowadays that when we “stop”, our phone is right in front of us, busy with learning, news, kay poh someone else’s social media updates and what not. However, only when we really STOP AND LIVE in the present moment with everyone around during major events. Events such as weddings, funeral, milestone birthday lunches or dinners to have some clear space in the head that we suddenly realize people around us.

Parents seems to have aged..

Their hair are turning more silver…

Children seem to grown taller..

Grandparents seems to walk a little slower … talk a lot more or they just become the complete opposite and become really quiet.

When we look into the mirror, we find more train tracks on the face, extra kilo here and there. Well, thats the cruel reality of life.

For family portrait photography, its even easier to put it off as its a big task involving the organisation of many people for the photoshoot and nobody want to go to the trouble. So Why Bother Doing Family Photoshoot?

My Observations

I have been doing charity shoot for Home Nursing Foundation this past week that involve older generation in the community who live all by themselves. No doubt they are self sufficient, but throughout the day, my observation tells me that, they love having people around them. They kept saying:

“Today, I am very happy, because I have all of you all to bring me around, spend time and talking to me.”

If you ask any parents, what matter the most to them, almost always you will hear:

“MY FAMILY is the most important to me!”

All they want to have is your TIME with them. Talking to them, doing something meaningful things with them.

Older generation don’t need much, the thing that they value the most is the photograph of their family together. That worth more than anything to them.

I understand we can’t be with them all the time, with this little photograph, they can certainly relive the moment, you share with them.

Knowing its importance, how long can you procrastinate then?

Tomorrow Never Comes?

There is only right now, the present. Why they call it “The Present” is because only right this second, you are able to do something. Tomorrow, we are lucky when we are given one more day as tomorrow always seems like an elusive time that never really come. So if I tell you that there is Free Beer tomorrow… you better believe me. Because, there will no free beer today.

10 Years?

Majority of the families I photographed recently had their family portrait taken some 10 years ago. Yes! it is a decade.

When I talk to them about what happen in the last 10 years, usually, there are some “regrets” because they say they should have done it earlier. Someone has passed on, someone is terminally ill, someone has moved to different country, etc.

Often, I get ask if I could “photoshop” a person or two in a family photo. It certainly break my heart just to hear it.

It seems like, something this important, tend to be left hanging for 10 years and there you go, that’s 10 years of procrastination. How long have you procrastinate to have yours done? if the answer is this long or longer, maybe, it is time to stop and re-think about getting one done real soon!

3 Years?

Smaller and younger families does their shoot every 18 month to about 3 years depending on the ages of the kids. Usually, they will do one for their own family about 18 months when the children is under 7, but when it comes to grandparents, they tend to include them on every second shoot.

It is amazing with even shorter procrastinating timing, we still have good number of clients who tells us that they should be doing it earlier. So what are you waiting for?

Another baby?

If you are like us when we say we “close shop” with 3 children. It is a good time to plan as an annual thing.

Clients do ask us to send a reminder as they want to do it more often. Majority come back and some will forget, well, I will hear the same old story like the sound of broken record.

No Procrastination – Let’s Plan It Regularly

Having said that, there are also many clients who does their family portraits yearly without fail. They make it as a tradition, one album, one canvas or frame to fill their wall of their ever growing family. As we open 7 days a week, it is never easier to plan something in and we make the process simple for you so you can enjoy while we take care of this important thing for you.

So, Lets look at 2 typical scenarios when planning for a photoshoot. Which one can you relate more?

Scenario 1

1. When was the last time we did our family portrait? – 15 years ago when I graduated.
2. Family Portrait Photography – Is it important? Yes.
3. When Should It Be Done? – Soon
4. How Soon? – When everyone is available?
5. When is that? – Christmas, Hari Raya, Deepavali or Lunar New Year?
6. Oh so and so will be away on these dates? Let’s do it another time? – Ok When?
7. Dad or Mum’s Birthday? or Anniversary? – Ok
8. This year or the next? – Next

Ok let’s set a date and start a WhatsApp group to get this organised. – Perfect!

Scenario 2

1. When was the last time we did our family portrait? – 15 years ago when I graduated.
2. Family Portrait Photography – Is it important? Yes.
3. When Should It Be Done? – ASAP
4. How Soon? – Before grandma/grandad/dad/mum have health issue. Do it when they are all healthy.
5. When is that? – Next Week

Ok, set a date, make sure everyone block this time for the photoshoot.

Reflection

As I turn 40, my mind is occupied with a million things that I sometimes forget to be present. I take it for granted that I will see my family and friends tomorrow, and the day after that and after that… or is it really?

I came home yesterday and learnt about the departure of a friend of mine, whom was around my age. It serves as a wake up call for me to be present, grateful and appreciative of every moment with friends and family!

After many years of photographing families, I’ve encountered families who booked the session but was a day too late for the grandparents; or that there is only a small window of opportunity for the photoshoot to take place in between hospital/doctor visits and visiting family from abroad.

It is difficult to comprehend sometimes, when a family asking for a refund as the shoot they planned will never happen ever again because the main person that they want to be in the photograph is no longer there. This shocks me and sometimes leave me battling with my emotion for hours if not days.

Gift of Time

As I grow older, I come to understand the biggest gift you can give people is not things, but time. It is your time that they want the most… as it is life most expensive commodity, as time is finite.

We live in age of abundance opportunities, abundance of wealth, abundance of knowledge for you to chase but the only wealth that older generation usually speak of is often our time with them.

You see, photographs has a super power that allow time to standstill at the point of time that the image was taken. Your time spent with your family is well recorded, proudly hung on the walls of those who know it matters.

Generation Portrait with your parents and grandparents are not a luxury anymore. It is a necessity. If you have to get something for them, why not something tangible that reminds them of the time you spend with them? It can be a birthday gift for them, it can be an anniversary gift for them, it could be a major milestone gift for them, whatever excuse you need to make up, you know you are giving them something that they will cherish for the rest of their life and also pass on to their grandchildren one day.

So how long would you like to procrastinate? Just how much longer do you want them to wait? They won’t ask, but it would be nice of you to offer them.

So, if you have read until here. Wait No More! Give us a call at 8858 0088 or whatsapp us to have a chat on how we can make your generation portrait done for your parents.

Hart was lovely with my 3 year old! He was able to capture the expressions and essence of the moment perfectly, and we have not taken any family photos in the last 10 years. He does definitely have his way with kids. Looking forward to the shoot next year!

Anne Lee
Facebook Review, July 2019

Hart personally took photos for my two boys. My older boy doesn’t like strangers and we can never get a proper photo of his beautiful smile. Hart, amazingly, did it! He captured the true essence of the boys’ smiles and every time we look at the photos, they blow us away!
We loved that he was really efficient, we have been to other studios and other photographers that by the time we were only halfway done, the boys are very cranky and we had to end the day. Hart was also really quick in sending us our chosen shots and to say they were beautiful is an understatement!

Lele Ng
Google Review, July 2019

This is my first time taking family portraits with my Grandmother. I am grateful to Hart Tan for capturing many beautiful photos. First, Hart allowed me to change my photoshoot date at late notice as my Grandmother was feeling unwell on our first arranged date. Next, he was competent to coax my Grandmother to smile brightly during the sessions :). Third, he was able to capture beautiful photos of my impatient Grandmother in less than 20 mins. I am highly satisfied! Thank you.

Ivan Lee
Google Review, January 2019

There were about 20 of us. Ages spanned from 98 to 2, members of the family who wanted to play photographer, children who did not want to smile for the camera and tired members of the family from travelling. Yet, Hart took it all in his stride. He was easy going, warm and made everyone feel right at home. He took great natural shots of all of us and we absolutely love love love the photos.

Ren Jong
FB Review
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Family Photography in your backyard

Time was 5pm, it was a lovely late afternoon to do a session for a lovely family of 7.

Youngest child usually the most interesting to shoot… it wasn’t easy shoot though… as usual, kids won’t like to be in the shot, kids will just smile funny… a little persistent will reward you with beautiful images of the family.

Home is usually the easiest place to have the family photography session done. There is no travel and kids are in their zone. Usually, home shoot yield a lot of great moments so this may be something to think about for your next family session?

Regards,

Hart Tan
www.tomato.sg


Family Portraits: Why It’s Worthwhile

family_photography_singapore

Your Family, Your Story:

Your life as a family is like a story book. A day a page, a month, chapter, and a year in a volume. 

Storybook of your family should contain beautiful images of your family so everyone remember how they look at that particular time of their life.

Photos can powerfully depict the ties of each family member and the strong bond that they share. Our parent’s generation might not have taken as many photos as this leaves many of us in the lurch when it comes to reflecting on our childhood visually or recalling important memories from events captured in film.  The one of the great wonders of our new generation is the access we have to cameras and technology, all of this makes us less apprehensive about getting in front of the camera and allowing a photographer to shoot away our precious family portrait.

We focus on the all important moments of your modern day family.   Captured digitally are the moments shared between loved ones.  With a focus on fun moments, this is the perfect opportunity to get shots done that reflect your family in its truest form

What People LOVE in Their Life Story book?

My clients often tell us that they love picture that is natural. Something simple, but simple often is the hardest thing to achieve. People say, I want candid photo, what do they mean by candid? are they suppose to do something for the camera? if yes, what to do? If they do it, it become contrive and being contrive is one of the big no no and clients hate it. 

When your kids are under 3, their little silly face is cute, adorable and we certainly love those images, however, same silly face when they are 9 or 10 years old, probably something that we want to avoid. In short, clients love images that is that is simple, natural and images that is age appropriate.

We believes that by allowing children to just be themselves and engage with them as they play naturally allow great images to be captured of your little ones. 

baby_photo_singapore
Here are the main reasons that families choose to get family photos done:

Every family want to feel proud of their family. A beautifully captured family portrait is often a mean to show those proud moment

Secondly, Family want something tangible to show their children’s growth. 

Beautifully capture images offer parents an opportunity to stop the moment as we all know that time waits for noone, as the kids get bigger; or the parents getting older.

Whilst you plan to get your own family portraits done annually, let’s also remember to invite the grandparents to join in the shots; or organise everyone to do an extended family portrait.

After all, many of your parents are providers for you when you were younger; care-givers of your children; it is even more important if they live overseas.

Displaying tangible form of family photo on the walls of your home sends a strong message to your family and everyone who enters your home that your family means more to me than anything else in the world. 

All you have to do is ask someone what he or she would grab if their house were on fire.  I’m sure most people you ask would say their family photos. Family portraits frame freeze important parts of our lives that often remind us why we work, love and live.
family_photo_singaporeContact us to discuss your family photos today! Give us a call or Whatsapp us on +65 88580088

Hart could capture the genuine smiles and expressions on my kids’ faces, and that was what is important for me. The photo shoot was spontaneous and family-directed, i.e. you get the photos that YOU want. – Denise Rachel Yong

Lovely photos we had. Hart was actively engaged with my girls and both my hubby and I do not need to even “control” them. he totally had them under his control. And he really responded back with the photos taken so fast within 48 hours. – Sal Tan

Hart took photos of our family recently, and we were so impressed with his great demeanor and artistic eye. He is great with kids, and he even managed to get our 18 month old grumpy baby to crack a few smiles. Each setting he picked for the photos was really lovely. Very happy with our experience! – Lisa Blackard

More Reviews Here

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