Top 8 Outdoor Family Photoshoot Locations in Singapore

Top 8 locations For Outdoor Family Photoshoots

I can’t help but appreciate the vast amount of greenery in the country as I have lived in this great city since 2008.

From the time you land in Singapore Changi Airport travelling towards the city. The rows and rows of trees along the highway; along the roads, pavements. You are bound to see greenery everywhere. Even when you are on the high rise having a birds eye view from the top of the buildings, one would usually see the canopy of green and the hidden pavements and roads underneath. Singapore’s vision of building a city in a garden is truly realised!

There are so much transformation in Singapore that we need to keep up on where to do outdoor photoshoots because the landscape changes all the time.

For those of you who only got to know about Tomato Photo, Tomato Photo started in 2008 from a tiny little corner of a bedroom and primarily photographed kids and families outdoors or at clients’ home. It was a year later in 2009 that we had a studio. We are still shooting as many outdoor and studio shoots today.

Why Do Outdoor Photoshoots?

Many clients who visit Singapore temporarily as tourists or work/live here for a short period of time would usually opt for outdoor photoshoots to have some form of memories of Singapore captured during their short stay in Singapore.

The other group of clients who opt for outdoor photoshoots are usually families who had done multiple studio milestone sessions in the past when their kids were younger. Now that the kids are bigger and more independent, parents would like to have pictures taken in the environment that the kids frequent and love roaming around their favourite parks during their childhood.

Whilst there has been an increasing number of purpose built outdoor playgrounds around Singapore, the most requested photoshoot locations are still in the iconic landmarks in Singapore. So here, we have round up the Top 8 Most Requested Outdoor Locations For Family Photoshoots.

1. Singapore Botanic Gardens

Singapore Botanic Gardens is located in the heart of the city and is Singapore’re first UNESCO Heritage Site. The gardens is 82 hectares and stretches all the way from Tanglin Road to Bukit Timah Road. The lush greenery within its grounds and its historic buildings and structures (eg. The Band Stand) was the iconic location that many would love to be associated with in their wedding, couple or family portraits. That said, as the Botanic Gardens covers a vast area with multiple car parks and entrances, the photoshoots are often carried out in areas that is best suited for the family in question. We work with clients who are mobility challenged; clients with young kids, bigger extended families to arrive at a location best suited to their needs and wants. More images from Botanic Gardens can be viewed HERE.

2. Emerald Hill Conservation Area

The Conservation Area of Emerald Hill is located just behind the shopping strip of Orchard Road. These charming Shophouses with peranakan tlles, ornate doors and metal grills were former homes to the wealthy peranakan community. Further, as we mentioned previously, Singapore is a city within a garden. You would still be able to capture some greenery within this area.

These intricate details add a different dimension and colours to the portraits. More images HERE.

3. East Coast Park

East Coast Park is a rather special area with loads of mature greenery and a long stretch of beach to add. For those who loves the water AND the greenery, this is the perfect place for a family photoshoot. Enjoy breakfast or dinner after your shoot at the various establishments along the park for a complete day of making special memories with your family.

Do visit our East Coast Park Photo Shoot Gallery for more sample images.

4. Fort Canning Park

Fort Canning Park is a hilltop landmark located at the central part of Singapore. Its historical past is evident from the structures found in the park. These structures together with the greenery forms a picture perfect backdrop for the old meets new kind of portrait for your family. More Fort Canning Images HERE.

5. Gardens By the Bay – Main Gardens

Gardens By The Bay Main Gardens is located next to Marina Bay Sands. The first impression of some are these looks like the set of the movie Avartar set within lush greenery just outside of the city centre.

It is a popular area for family who love a mix of cityscape with greenery in the images as well as the iconic Supertree.

There are so many areas within Garden By the Bay Main Gardens, all you need to do is to meet us there and we will bring you to our favorite locations to scenic place that is also quiet.

See more images from the Garden By The Bay Main Gardens’ Gallery

6. Gardens By The Bay – East (Tg Rhu)

For families who love water, lush greenery park, expansive skies as well as the iconic Singapore city skyline backdrop.

A short 5 minutes walk from the carpark/taxi drop off will bring your family to this beautiful outdoor location. You can choose to have the shoot done early morning or late in the afternoon and you will be rewarded with different looks to the same location.

Here is the link to more images taken at Garden By the Bay East.

7. Gardens By the Bay – Dome

Love outdoors while having AC on all the way? The Flower Dome and Cloud Forest Dome within Garden By Bay is the answer. Your session in a cool climate while having all the outdoor feel to it.

What a better way to have this done. We understand the dome can be crowded sometimes, we do know some areas within the dome that we can still get relatively quiet areas without people getting in your shot.

Visit our Gallery Here for more images capture within the dome.

8. Marina Bay Promenade

Marina Promenade is one of the best location for morning session. It is quiet, beautiful city skyline, as well as the comfort of the cool ac within the MBS Shoppes.

We often focus on the outdoors and then duck in for some cool temperature at the end.

Want to see more? Visit our Marina Bay Sand Promenade Gallery.

9. Home or Studio (Bonus)

I hear you. I know outdoor location is fun and unique and all that. Some of you just can’t survive the heat, and it is totally understandable.

For those who just sweat out when you step out of the shower and while understand the important of having the images taken. Home shoot or our studio session will be your obvious choice.

Let’s see why our purpose built studio is worthy of your consideration.

Our studio is on lift landing level, which is easy for children who is still on stroller, or grandparents who has mobility challenge, there is no stairs to climb and our studio is less then 20 steps away from the lift landing.

Once you step inside the studio, you will be greeted by the cosy and welcoming feeling of architecturally design studio. We have thought of every details from the layout, the flow, the decor, the amenities, the backdrop, the temperature, the scent, etc to fit Hart’s vision of his perfect man-cave… well we mean photo studio.

Here is the link to see what you can achieve in our studio.

10. Koon Seng Road Shophouse (Bonus)

I hear you. I know outdoor family photography location is fun and unique and all that. Throw in some colorful heritage shophouse in the mix, you are in for an unique images for your family.

This stretch of the shophouse is one of the most instagrammable images that you can have for Singapore.

The bonus is, Hart lives just around the corner so he knows the in and out of the places including some interesting area that tourist will often missed.

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
Google Review

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
Google Review

Hart was great on our family photo shoot – we had quite a large crowd to accommodate (with family visiting from overseas etc.) and an 18 month old toddler. As you know, toddlers are never predictable but Hart was excellent working with our daughter and managed to engage with her quickly and kept her “interested” and captured all her many facial expressions. It was a fun session with both an indoor and outdoor shoot and the entire family had fun. The ordering process was also very simple/easy and all online, with the products delivered to your home.

Su Yenn Goh
Facebook Review
View More Testimonials

Children Photography Tips For Photographing Your Kids

Children Photography Tips 101

Parents with young kids, you are not alone.

There is a lot to learn about photographing our own children. But it can be done! This article about Children Photography Tips was first published in 2014 and fast forward to 2022, I’ve just managed to have time to do a minor update. I hope this article help you parents who would like to try and capture memories of your kids.

So What Are The Main Challenges With Photographing Children?

We all know that children at the age of 0 to 5 years old are super cute and irresistible. However, it is not an easy task to capture photographs of them.

Firstly, you will need a lot of patience when photographing infants and capture images of your kids in different ways.

1. Behaviour Of Child 

Each child is unique and the more we can understand the children, the easiest to get the real emotion from the child.

For example, a strong-willed child usually like to be challenged, so challenging them will work wonders on them. However, on the other hand, a very shy child usually need a lot time to build the rapport and gain their trust. So different strokes for different kids.

2. Manage Our Own Expectations

As parents, you want to remember every moment of your child’s life. But it can be hard to take pictures that capture the essence of your child when they are constantly in motion.

Here are four tips to help you take pictures of your children that will help you capture their personality and their memories:

1. Don’t expect perfection – no one is perfect, especially children. Don’t sweat over drool on the shirt. It’s ok.

2. Just relax and have fun – if you’re having fun, your child will too.

3. Let them be themselves – don’t try to make them pose or do things they don’t want to do.

4. Take lots of pictures – the more pictures you take, the better chance you have to get that perfect picture. It also allows you to have some self discovery on the type of pictures, angles etc that you like.

Know what you are looking to capture as memories. For example, if I am looking to preserve memories of my child at a particular stage, I will look for the “milestone” type of image, such as taking the first steps. I’d focus the shoot on the child toddle/walking with their hands balancing their centre of gravity etc.

Children Photography Tips for Different Scenarios

My idea of photography is simple, capture the memories for the child as you interpret it as their parents. Allow them to be who they are and add or remove elements that you want to be in or out of those memories so we can remember them.

When Kids Are Sleeping

When child is sleeping, they really don’t mind what you do as a parents. Use smaller and un-intrusive camera would work well in this setting. Child’s room tend to be dark, use of small flash light bouncing away from the child should give the right illumination that needed to get the images.

When Kids Are Playing / Doing Sports

If they are playing in the house, don’t interrupt them, let them do what they do and capture those moments as they will grow out of it in not so distant away. If they are playing sport soutside the house, try to use longer tele-photo lens (something like 70-200mm works the best) to capture them without interrupting their activity.

When On Vacation & You Want To Include The Background Scenic Location Too

Vacation is the best time to do the shoot as you tend to be relaxed and there are a lot of things going on during the vacation. Bring a small camera and bring one zoom lens instead of a lot of them. Spend time capturing what you want to remember of them. Forget about bringing tripod, find somewhere to lean on and stabilise the camera by pulling the strap down and pull the camera up gives you the stability on the go. In short, keep it simple and focus on what you want to include as part of their memories

When Doing Portraits

Control of lighting is crucial hence, usually off camera flash works better to control the shadow or find somewhere that has a big window. Use bed sheet as backdrop. Remember portrait is about the subject, set your camera and forget about it. Talk to the subject and find out the interesting expression of your child. You will be surprised you see a lot of genuine expression when you talk to them like a little friend.  Don’t criticise them and keep the session short.

In Water Or Pool

Waterproofed your camera!
Those plastic enclosure works really well and go in the pool with them. Give kids directions on where to swim towards so you can control the overall image. Be patient! It takes a bit of time to focus in the water. Children usually like to do things repeatedly so just ask them to repeat them until you get the shots. That said, keep it short on each repetition.

When You Have A Group Of Them

In the group, you need to find the “leader” of the pack if they are older than 4 years old. Guide the leader and the rest will follow.

For kids younger than 4, just give them something that will make them sit down together… whatever… food, drawing, activities… etc.

General Children Photography Tips – Technical &  Communication

Soft lighting usually works better for children. So, bounce the light if you have something to bounce, a big white towel makes a perfect bounce surface. I tend to shoot with manual mode as I can control the light and other variables the way I want it. However, aperture is more commonly used as you just need to worry about 1 variable. Keep things simple really.

Understanding your child is crucial, never push what you want into them. If you want them to smile, make them smile, don’t ask them to smile.

If you want them to be happily jumping around, do that with them. They are a reflection of you. Remember, the less you ask and the more you do things with them, will give you more things to shoot.

Last but not least, you need to always remember the idea behind why you want to take a photograph of your child? It is all about them and you are just an observer…

Here are some images I took of my kiddos during our vacation in 2014.

That said, if you have tried photographing your kids for a while now and is on the verge of throwing in the towel before they grow any further, or you now need to be in front of the camera this time. My forte in children’s photography is catching their raw emotions, mannerisms, who they are. Simple, Natural & Beautiful portraits of your kids and family. 

“Those are the expressions we see but never managed to capture in a photo 🤭. Thanks to Hart for making us feel so comfortable, and more importantly, the photos are awesome! Thank you once again ☺️ plus the amazing efficiency in giving us the photos👏 👏👏” – Jun Chong

Need more convincing, head over to Tomato Photo Reviews to learn more; or simply get in touch with us for more info!


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