It takes skills to capture the right moments during a photoshoot. More often than not, there are too many factors beyond control, such as the mood of the subjects. Having an eye for details such as the subjects’ best profile, or getting them to warm up and smile naturally without looking stiff, are part of being an experienced professional photographer.
When the opportunity for a maternity photoshoot came along, it was an exciting call for our family and I could finally strike something off my bucket list! When we were expecting Vera, things were going at such a whirlwind pace and being bogged down by work, both of us had only thought of a newborn photoshoot for her.
Our little family is indeed thankful to be able to chronicle our second child’s (more affectionately referred to as B2 since we have no clue of the little one’s gender!) journey with the help of professionals who not only have to make a whale-looking mama look good, but also have to be able to cajole a toddler who may or may not be in the right mood for those picture-perfect shots.
Sounds like a tall order? Indeed so, so let’s see how the Orange Studios team would fare!
Orange Studios is a local homegrown photography studio made up of a husband-and-wife team, who specialises in maternity, newborn and family portraiture. Ryan and Wini, have been capturing beautiful memories for clients, and charming them with their personal and warm touch for over five years. And it’s not a surprise why many families continue returning to them to put their family milestones in print. Connect with them on: Facebook | Instagram too!
Thanks to them, preparations was easy and the actual photoshoot was a breeze. Read on for our experience with Orange Studios! :)
Before the maternity photoshoot
Several weeks before the maternity photoshoot, Wini got in touch with me to arrange the booking of a date along with information on what we should note for the shoot, and promptly and patiently responded to my many queries on what and how to prepare for that special day.
There were some clashes in schedules as silly me, mixed up my appointments (#mombrain), but Wini and Ryan both kindly accommodated to our timings, so our shoot was done just before I was 35 weeks into the pregnancy. The recommended period would be 33-36 weeks of pregnancy for a maternity portraiture.
A couple of weeks before our maternity photoshoot, Ryan called me to discuss our preferred venue for the shoot, and shared the gist of both indoor and outdoor options. Initially, our hearts swayed towards an outdoor location shoot for a back-to-nature and carefree style, but the call time was impossible as our family aren’t early birds, much less little V. *oops* In fact, the early sunlight would be the best time for natural daylight that’s needed during a shoot, but given the conditions, an indoor studio shoot would be a better bet as it would be easier to manage too.
In fact, he rang me a second time again closer to date to brief me on the things needed to be prepared e.g. outfits, props to bring, number of changes during the shoot, etc. Thereafter, Wini, kindly dropped a note which I really appreciated (no thanks to mom’s brain!), and preparations for the shoot was smooth and easy, and for that, I thank the both of them for making it fuss-free and a breeze to manage!
Sometime in between our correspondences, Wini shared a little surprise with me that was to happen during our photography session. Find out what it was as I share my experience below!
During the maternity photoshoot
Our session started at 10am, and with the super detailed navigation information on how to get to their studio, getting there was easy!
The day before our maternity photoshoot (which coincidentally was New Year’s Day!), Wini kindly sent a friendly message about our shoot, and the navigation information – talk about service standards!
When we arrived, we were greeted by their big smiles and warmly welcomed into their cosy studio. Lighting equipment and backdrop were in place, and prepared ahead. All we needed to do was settle down, have little V warm up in the new environment and we had a quick discussion as I showed them the outfits and props that we’ve brought along and the ball was rolling!
As mummy would be the main character (hey, it’s a maternity shoot afterall!), I would have four outfit changes. Vera and Daddy would be involved in the different shots, and Ryan and Wini would inform us accordingly so we could get changed in the fitting room.
It didn’t take long for little V to get familiarised with the place because the Orange Studios folks had a library of children’s music as well as toys for her! And, Barney came on almost immediately, much to V’s surprise! It tells alot about the team who are familiar working with children, and knew how to make them comfortable :)
So we got changed, and had Vera involved in the initial shots, before moving on to individual maternity shots so Vera could take a break. Couple shots had the hubs joining me, and we had V join us for more family pictures too. Surprisingly, it didn’t take V long to warm up, and she was sitting quietly watching mummy smiling away at the camera as I took instructions from Ryan on how to pose, smile, where to look, how to stand etc.
Wini was always nearby to ensure my hair was in place, took out the fan for some “MTV moments”, helped to adjust my poses so it was really reassuring as I wouldn’t know how my posture (my whale-like body might be sticking out in strange ways!) or awkward body language may translate to.
It was really simple, and pregnant mums need not worry about doing too much movement because most of the poses were done at the same spot. No exaggerated motions either, unless you really want to! :P
Here are some behind the scene shots from the day of maternity photoshoot:
In between the shoots, V had already happily settled down, drinking packet milk, eating biscuits on the sofa, or sitting on a stool and watching me quietly. Until she decided she wanted to be part of the shoot, and came forward to sit with me, much to everyone’s delight! :P
Turned out: she was the least of my worries during the photoshoot. I was more concerned about the hubs as he hadn’t had much sleep the past week, and lunchtime was inching closer :P
When the shoot was done (we took about 1.5hrs), THE SURPRISE was ready to roll!
Well, my baby bump had the pleasure of being beautified by a belly painter, Alicia from Happier Singapore! This multi-talented young lady made painting on a belly look so easy peasy! It really isn’t because one definitely requires more than just a pair of steady hands!
Prior to our session, we exchanged a few Whatsapp messages on what I had in mind, sent her a couple of pictures and on that day, we finalised the concept, decided on the font and text….. and that was IT!
Everything was done freehand and on the spot; plus shimmery glitter on the flower petals for a final finishing touch!
Did I mention that Alicia runs her own party planning company? A psychologist by training, she decided to become a full time face painter and balloon artist. Her sheer passion for children and art led to the birth of Happier Singapore!
The team paints and twists anything you can possibly imagine, bringing fun and creativity to birthday parties, weddings, family events and more recently, motherhood as well. Connect with Alicia and team on: Facebook | Instagram too!
And, this was the final masterpiece on my belly…. TA-DAH!! :D
What a beautiful belly art, wasn’t it?
Even little V had her first body art painting since she was happily observing Alicia working on my bump. And the little one happily warmed up to Alicia too, who had her way with kids, to be honest ;) Working with children takes experience and a knack with communicating with them! This self-taught artist makes little kids and adults happy at parties.
We’ve got an exclusive perk for readers too – read on to find out!
The belly painting session took about an hour, and the photography resumed! With my dressed up bump, there were solo maternity shots, as well as family takes :)
What you probably wouldn’t expect at a studio
As we wrapped up the photoshoot, we had a good after-session chat with Ryan and Wini, and we found out that they moved into their new space (they used to be located at Yishun) not too long ago. And what they shared, left the hubs and I very impressed on how the studio space was cleverly used.
You see, it’s not just a regular studio for photoshoots. In fact, because of their clientele i.e. families, each corner is carefully thought out and planned for different purposes. Most people might be thinking – what for? But you will realise that when the need arises, you’d be thankful for them!
Let’s go on a studio tour together:
The top two shots are actually part of a room that doubles up as a nursing room and/or entertainment room for kids! With a comfy sofa, coffee table and television in there, breastfeeding mums can take a moment to nurse their newborns or kids. How’s that for privacy to nurse in comfort?
For older kids who might not be patient enough to wait through the photoshoots, they get to watch DVDs or television in the comfort of the room!
The bottom two shots showcase the amenities within the area – pantry/kitchenette and washing area.
The pantry/kitchenette area is equipped with a fridge, microwave, washing area as well as dining facilities. And this idea came about because families with kids may need to feed during mealtimes, and hence, such thoughtful gesture was put together with them in mind.
Notice the washing machine in the picture? Well, that’s where Ryan and Wini wash the props such as maternity sash, toys, upholstery etc. But if clients need to wash their child’s clothing (newborns may poop and stain their clothes!), that’s where cleaning can be done too.
And of course, wet wipes are provided too, so if bubbas need a diaper change, no need to turn into a frantic mess!
More peeks of the studio area where various shots can be done – in studio setting with lighting equipment, or by the full height window with natural sunlight.
What surprised us further was the quick turnaround – Wini actually sent us the link to select our photographs just three working days later!
But we were so swarmed with work, we hadn’t had time to revert quickly, and we felt so bad :(
After hubs and I finally got down to selecting them, we waited excitedly for the final pictures, and at the same time, counting down to the arrival of B2! Yup, pretty much anytime now, since I’m currently at 38 weeks as you read this. Time sure flies!
BIG thank you to Orange Studios and Happier Singapore for our precious experience and memories of many ‘firsts’ – first maternity shoot, first professional family photography and first belly painting! Such a wonderful pleasure to get to know you, and we look forward to a beautiful 2016 together!
***Exclusive discount for readers of The Hooting Post!***
Enjoy a Maternity Special @ $850 (U.P. $960), which includes:
(i) pre-photoshoot preparatory/consultation call
(ii) 1 hour Maternity studio portraiture session (husband and children may join in, without additional charges)
(iii) 6″ x 6″ premium album
(iv) all digital files (8R resolution)
Terms and conditions:
– quote “THE HOOTING POST” to enjoy the Exclusive Special
– valid for booking confirmation made by 30 Apr 2016
– valid for usage until 30 Sep 2016
– $200 deposit is required for booking confirmation
Booking confirmation is on a “first come, first served” basis – do book early to ensure availability of your most preferred time slot.
Book a pregnant belly painting session which includes a virtual consultation on your belly story, design conceptualization and 1 hour actual day belly painting. (U.P. $250)
Quote #HappierHoots to get $50 off when enquiring with firstname.lastname@example.org
Valid till 31 March 2016.
Have you had a maternity photoshoot done before? It’s such a beautiful way to capture your special pregnancy body and baby bump at present time, don’t you think?