Our family photoshoot in Jeffreys Bay…

All credit goes to Heidi Knowles– what a talented photographer. Not only is Heidi a passionate and gifted photographer, but she has a bubbly, contagious personality that allows even the most reluctant of ‘models’ to loosen up.

Matt had just turned six months old and although he had met my mom in London when he was just a wee baby, it was his first time meeting my dad, grandparents and the rest of our South African clan. Thus, I wanted to mark this momentous occasion with a professional photoshoot of my family in Jeffreys Bay. Something so special, not just a precious keepsake, but also a wonderful memory to cherish, filled with lots of laughs.

I had found Heidi’s page on Facebook, when scrounging online for a photographer a few months before our trip. I instantly loved her pictures, and her ability to capture both the beauty of J-Bay’s natural scenery, but also the special unposed moments.

Living in the UK (or Mud Island as my dad likes to call it), especially in London, we have many wonderful attractions; the West End, galleries and beautiful parks to name but a few. One thing we aren’t fortunate enough to have nearby is the beach in all its beatitude.

Growing up in sunny South Africa, always having lived at the coast, it’s one thing I miss with all my heart. To me, the ocean is life’s natural therapy, an infinite world of life, colour and expression. Listening to the crashing waves or witnessing one of Africa’s golden sunsets as it sinks below the wide horizon… there’s nothing quite like it. This is one of the main reasons I wanted to have our photoshoot at the beach. I spoke it through with Heidi, who agreed that was a great idea, weather permitting of course.

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We were so blessed with glorious weather throughout most of the duration of our trip, but those who have been to the Eastern Cape (PE and J-Bay in particular) know just how vicious and temperamental the wind can be, even on the best of days. The day we had our shoot booked in, well let’s just say, the wind was in a bad mood. A shoot at the beach would have been disastrous. Lucky for us, Heidi had an alternative, we met at her house.

Blown away (and not by the wind this time!) Heidi’s property is situated against the most breathtaking of natural backdrops- a beautiful lake and garden- perfectly sheltered from the elements. We had the first session of our photoshoot there. An array of shots were taken, with Matthew being the main attraction. The sweet darling was pretty tired at the time of the session, but did so well to flash us his gorgeous smile and show off his sparkling blue eyes.

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It was so special having my grandparents join us for the photoshoot. We are so rarely all together, I was so happy when they agreed. To be honest, I wasn’t sure that they would be keen on the idea but as you can tell by the photos, they are naturals. Heidi made us all feel at ease with our chat about the lake and her time spent in the UK, it all felt really informal and relaxed. I am hoping that my sister and her beautiful family can join us for the next one.

Heidi was great in getting back to me once she had looked through our photos. I was pleasantly surprised when she asked if we would like a second shoot (at no extra cost) at the beach in the next few days. Seeing as it was Christmas time, and Heidi was very busy, I was grateful that she could squeeze us in for that beach shoot I was so eager for.

A few days later, Donal, Matt and I geared up for round two at Kabeljous beach. It was nearing sunset and the evening was calm and cool. We thoroughly enjoyed the shoot again and the photos came out wonderfully. We are so pleased with the result. Thanks Heidi!




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