A Family Celebration Photography Story - Yvonne Mitchell Photography

A Family Celebration Photography Story

"You made the whole experience so relaxed and lighthearted which in turn brought out everyone's character and that was evident in the pictures, for that I thank you.”

- Debbie, Canada


So it’s been a long time since you all got together as a family in fact it’s been 10 years for this family.

Your mum’s big birthday is approaching and there is nothing she loves more than her family so a get together is planed and booked. Now what about a photo album of memories from this weekend, shall you book a photographer to capture you all together, after all it’s a rare event?

You would like to have new pictures of your own family as well as with your mum, your brothers and sisters and of course your lovely nieces and nephews.

Debbie had this problem, let me tell you about her family photography experience and why she is so pleased she hired me.


The problem

When your family is spread across North America, the Middle East, England and Scotland and the children now have lives of their own it’s a very rare occasion when you all come together in the same country, city and room. Debbie and her family had an opportunity to celebrate her mother in law’s big birthday all together with everyone. So the biggest lodge was booked at Piperdam and the date set. Which local photographer will help capture the occasion?

Is Yvonne the right photographer for this family occasion?

Debbie, with help from Google, found me but the next question is am I available and am I a good fit?

An quick email confirmed I was available, so I suggest we speak over Skype to make sure I’m the right fit for her family.

An hour later, and we’ve talked about the occasion, the family, who's who and how they are linked. We talked about what they all do and what they are like.

We talked about how Debbie wanted something complete to hand to her mother in law from the experience and not another project for Debbie to have to find the time to go and create her own photobooks etc.


“As soon as I spoke to Yvonne and explained my ideas I knew straight away she was the right one.”

- Debbie, Canada


Scouting the photoshoot location

It's been a while since I was at Piperdam so before Debbie arrived in Scotland, I popped along to view the grounds and the actual lodge Debbie and her family have booked. 

I’m a planner and like to check things like possible locations out in advance.

Outdoors was definitely going to be the best options for this big group of 15 with natural light and the trees it was a lovely location. I'm excited and looking forward to meeting them all.

On the photoshoot day….It rained!

Oh no, we can’t move the date or time and it’s raining and dull, my plans with Debbie were going to need to be amended.

The most important thing she told me was to capture this big family together so plan B was launched and I packed up my car with studio lights, diffusers and cables and off I went. Ready to meet them for the first time but also praying the rain would let up.

And so we began the family photoshoot, indoors.

The warmest of welcomes awaited me from Debbie and the entire family and a shrug that the weather was not great but delight that we had a great big room to use.  I knew this was going to be a great relaxed family to photograph and I was not wrong.

Debbie wanted the individual characters to shine through and this comfortable loving family to beam from the images so with a little furniture re-arranged we were off. Flash, beep…


“My favourite part of the shoot was just how everyone interacted (yourself included) and that we were all having fun, especially after the family hadn't all been together for 10 years.

-Debbie Canada


And we’re done…

All the individual family groups, the grandchildren, the grandchildren with granny and the entire family together, the list was long but we captured them all in a relaxed and fun way.

We also had a challenge to re-created a 10 year old image of when all the grandchildren were last together, this was to then have pride of place on the wall in granny's home.

Pack up time for me and on with the celebrations for the family.

10 years ago...

10 years ago...

The original photograph that needs to be recreated today

...and in 2017

...and in 2017

the same family line up, 10 years later.


A week later, after the Photoshoot

Debbie stayed in Scotland for a while longer so I was able to welcome her and Johan, her mother in law, to my home for a personal reveal of her images and of course a coffee.

This is always exciting and the best way to see the images and choose your favourites for the album and the wall.

A few tears of joy and pride later and Johan has selected the re-created image for her wall and lots of images for a photobook, in a handy size.

Debbie has given me a list of prints she would like to display back home in Canada, the list is long!

And the family members who couldn’t pop in…

A password protected online gallery allowed them to view all the images from the day and place an order for lots of prints that was delivered directly to them a day or so later.


Johan's photobook with her favourite images and a portrait of all her grandchildren together to be displayed in her lounge.

  • Johan's Family Photo Book
  • Johan's Grandchildren

The Result

The entire family are delighted that they managed to pull off this get together and most importantly they have new family portraits to remember the occasion by.

Did it matter that we didn’t have the backdrop of woodland trees, not a bit.


“To recommend you to friends, basically I would just show them the photos, they say it all “

- Debbie Canada

Debbie & Rob

Yvonne Mitchell

Am I the right photographer for your family get together?

Let’s check dates then start to plan your family photoshoot and the albums and wall frames you would like to leave with.


Family Photography Session Fee £155.

Photobooks, like Johan's, from £160.

Wall Art, 'Edge Print' like Johan's start at £145.

Online password protected Gallery to show all the images, included. Prints purchased via the online gallery from £15 each.

Powered by SmugMug Log In