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What do you do when your baby turns two?

My photography studio is a toddler, and I can’t believe we made it!

It’s surreal to think two years ago I wasn’t sure I could even do it. With my baby in my arms, committing to a commercial space was scary, but in my heart, I wanted to do it.

Little did I know what I would learn or how I would grow as a photographer and as an artist, too.

It was not only because I had a very young family that I wanted to create a permanent photographic studio. I knew it was time for space where I could prioritize my clients’ wish for exclusive baby keepsakes.

I dreamed of shooting beautifully lit photographs that captured the tenderness of a newborn; the radiance of an expectant mother; the shared affection within generations of family. A permanent photographic studio could mean I’d have the perfect space to photograph such moments.

Now, looking back, it amazes me that we – me, my family and my wonderful clients – made this wish come true.

Look how we’ve grown in just these two years.

Why I organised the space to resemble home.

For anyone who has never been to a photographic shoot, I must let you know Visible Moments is no ordinary studio.

From the beginning, I wanted my customers’ experience to be different. As I had been going to clients’ houses to capture family portraits, I thought it would be fantastic to create a home-from-home setting.

This is why you find a wonderland of props, toys, cute clothes and – most important for every sleep-deprived parent of a newborn – I put in a lovely comfortable couch along with tea, coffee, and snacks. 

The effect is cozy and welcoming. Everyone feels instantly comfortable as if the shoot is in their own home. Of course, the benefit is there’s no cleaning up to do, especially after a messy cake smash!

Two years later, Visible Moments has become a magical place where children play, cakes get smashed, clothes get covered in colorful icky icing… And, of course, families leave with happy memories as well as pictures to cherish for generations.

The reason why I say they leave with happy memories is…

Sometimes the session is little more than just a ``picture creating`` event.

Photography is never only about photographing the people who come into the studio. It is about coming along with your little ones, maybe with a favorite toy or instrument, then playing in front of the camera for an hour.

We play with props, clothes, even backgrounds. I can personalize a setting, the lighting, anything I need to create unique keepsakes full of smiles and sweet, tender moments.

Creativity flows from photo session to after care service.

After the creativity and laughter in photographic sessions, it is very important to show my clients the edited images. This wasn’t an option before I had my own space.

Now, I can help clients every step of the way. This includes having a selection of framing choices available to see, touch and imagine your own photographs inside of.

Best of all is how I can help clients to visualize what the portrait and frame would look like in their homes with professional software. It’s really fun to play with.

In fact, I should say, if any of my clients haven’t printed or installed their pictures yet then contact me! I’m an expert at finding the perfect spot for your favorite images.

As our children grow, sometimes we miss how we develop, too.

The studio has been an incredible gift. As a self-confessed perfectionist, I’m always seeking to better how I express myself as a photographer. The studio enables me to indulge in personal and artistic projects. It provides the opportunity to try different techniques and to create some fine art portraits.

Because I can explore and perfect new approaches, I can bring this fine art quality into my client’s experience. As I refine my craft, I see the impact this has on my work. Clients respond positively to my photographs as they freezeframe the character and emotion of their little ones or the look from parent to child.

It is because of the studio I’ve been able to achieve these fine art qualities.

Privately, I sensed how the standard of my work was developing, but then I experienced incredible validation when I entered into a competition.

The UK Guild of Photographers and the IPPVA (Irish Professional Photographers and Videographers Association) recognized my talent. I won awards, which was simply wonderful.

Knowing that industry experts appreciate my ability inspires me to push myself to do the best work I can, as well as to pursue more personal projects. I think I will always be developing my skills. I can’t help it; I love what I do.

You’ve created a wonderful portrait studio. So, what’s next for Visible Moments?

I will always continue to improve the studio to make sure it fits the needs perfectly. I want to offer my families the most creative choices and service, so I will continue to seek new ways to fulfill this promise.

For example, I’m bringing in new wall art products and will soon announce a few new types of photography sessions, which I’m really excited about, but can’t mention just yet. 

In the end, I consider myself so lucky to have this as my workspace. It is a home from home for myself and for every family who comes in. I hope the studio will continue to grow, that I can continue to create photographs for families to cherish and of course more cake smashes!

It has been a wonderful transformative journey, not only for the studio but for myself professionally, too.

I cannot wait to see what the next two years hold for us.

Joanna, xxx

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