Wee Evie - One week old and chilling out at home.
They say never work with children and animals but I have to say that (even though it’s challenging) I totally disagree. Some of my all-time favourite photos have involved children AND animals, and this first photo of Evie with Chopper is up there with them. It took a while for little Evie to settle enough to safely shoot her with her new BFF, but while we waited I loved documenting a little bit of her new life at home…
Evie’s dad, Hayden, is a mechanic and there’s nothing I love more than the sight of a working man’s hands holding his new baby so tenderly, despite the tough life those hands usually have. It’s one of life’s little miracles to watch a new dad discover a gentle, delicate, patient side to himself, as I often think Kiwi men don’t get to celebrate those aspects of themselves enough until they become a father.
For the first decade of my career as a photographer, I shot newborns in my studio. But since having my own babies I see things totally differently and want to tell a memorable story about those first whirlwind days with a new baby at home, amid all the real-life, unpolished, chaotic but totally beautiful elements that define the first few weeks. It also means I can shoot babies with their older siblings, in this case Chopper who, like his dad, has recently tapped into his gentle, protective side. Please, don’t ever let your dogs close to a new baby unless you are 110% confident of that relationship and stay close at all times.
I am always SO grateful that parents generously allow me to share such precious personal moments with those who follow my work. It’s certainly a privilege for me, not a right. Natalie went one step further and took some time out of her full-on, new-mum life to explain why she chose to get me to come along and shoot Evie, and how the process worked for them from a practical and financial perspective. Here are her words:
“As first time parents, we had been told by others how quickly newborns grow and that it can all be a bit of a blur in the first few days of life with them at home. Capturing precious newborn moments was therefore very important to us, so we began looking for a local photographer who could help us with this. When I contacted Eva, she responded promptly and answered all of our questions. We chose to book with Eva because of her reputation and the impressive photography she takes. We booked early on in our pregnancy and we were able to pay off the cost of the photo shoot in instalments, which was very helpful when preparing a budget for a new baby and going onto one income. The fact that Eva could come to our home was extremely convenient, especially when we’d only been home one week and were a little nervous to venture out too far and for too long! Having the photo shoot at home was incredibly relaxing and meant that we could go about our usual routine of feeding, changing etc. and Eva could capture all of these natural moments where the action happens every day...our home. We are absolutely thrilled with Eva’s work and love every photo she took of our Evie and us. We are very thankful for the great patience Eva displayed on the day and how she helped us to calm Evie when she became unsettled. Eva captured so many beautiful, precious moments for us to treasure forever. We are now able to access all of the photos she took and this was very important for us when making our decision of who we’d choose to do the photo shoot. The whole experience from beginning to end has been fantastic.”