Documentary Family Photographer, County Durham, UK


Real life. Natural moments. Honest emotions. Authentic connections. The story of your family…

Maybe ‘now’ is the right time…

So you want beautiful photos of your family, right? You know how important it is to preserve memories of loved ones. This year, more than ever, we have come to realise that we don’t get a do-over. Sometimes tomorrow just doesn’t come and we are left with silly, snapchat selfies and awkward group shots that grandma always insists on (but that no one really wants to be in). Well thank goodness for Grandma, because otherwise we probably wouldn’t have any photographs to take us back to some of our most cherished moments.

You’ve been saying it for years… ‘We must get some proper family photos taken!’ But life is busy, and you just never get around to it. And maybe if you leave it another few months you’ll have lost a few pounds, or you’ll have had the sitting room re-decorated, or the toddler will be a little less bonkers…. There is always a reason to put it off for now. But if we have learned anything from the weirdness of 2020, it is that putting things off ’til later is a risky business.


You don’t have to be perfect, you just need to be perfectly you!

Now, what if I told you that there was a style of photography that does not rely on toned bodies, show homes or well behaved children to get shots that you will fall in love with, print BIG and treasure forever? It’s true! I give you… Documentary Family Photography; where the crazy, imperfections of your life become art.

And that’s where I come in… I’m Vicki, and I’d love to be your friendly, family photographer. But a family photographer with a difference. For a start, I will never, ever, ever ask you to say ‘cheese’. In fact you don’t have to smile for me, or look at me, or even (if you really want) talk to me; I’m an introvert so I won’t mind! A family session with me will feel just like an ordinary day, hopefully a great day, but one just like many others. That way you can capture real memories of your very real lives; not a fake memory of a one-off moment somewhere pretty that holds absolutely no meaning to you our your little tribe.


A ‘free-from’ family session…

I can promise you a photography session completely free-from fancy posing, perfect smiles, forced merriment and matching neutral outfits (whoever decided cream was a great colour for families never had young children!) Instead, I will find beauty in the littlest of things; the thoughtful gazes, the belly laughs, the tired tears, the small gestures and touches. Sticky faces, grubby feet, discarded toys and piles of laundry. I allow my camera to look beyond the surface and bring out the heart of who you are. I will capture your family’s story and preserve its unique beauty. When this moment is just a distant memory, you will have images that will take you back there in an instant.


Why are you here?

You have got this far. You have found my website and you have scrolled down to here because you know you need to do this. You already appreciate how important photographs are. You have photos that you treasure of times long gone. You don’t really need to be told how important it is to take images of your loved ones. I am preaching to the converted, aren’t I? But I have a theory… You are the person in your family that values photographs the most. You are the keeper of your family memories, the curator of your family’s history. You are the password holder; the album maker. But it probably means that you are not in those photos. Am I right? You are the one that whips out their phone to capture the funny moments, to record the milestones, to grab pictures to send to friends and family of the small and the big achievements. Which is the very reason you need me, because nine times out of ten, those photos will NOT have you in them. And that is something I can give you – a place in your family’s story. It doesn’t have to be the starring role, but you NEED to be in there.


So what does a Documentary Family Photographer actually do?

I want you to think about which moments of your day best tell your family’s story. When you look back on this moment in time, what do you you really want to remember? Is it a lazy Sunday morning with sleepy, tousled-haired children helping you to cook pancakes, followed by pulling on wellies for a walk in the rain? Maybe it’s the evening routine of laying a table, eating together, baths and stories and cuddles? Or perhaps it’s the relaxed family walk with the teenagers; without their phones you get to see their fun side as they run down a hill, pick the wildflowers, and maybe even laugh at dad’s jokes! That’s what a documentary family photographer does, they capture those moments for you. And you’ll be in them too! My job is to record the ordinary, the everyday wonderfulness of your life in a beautiful way.

You will be surprised by just how beautiful your every-day life really is.



How long does a family session last?

That is entirely dependent on what you want memories of. Family sessions usually happen on the weekend, but don’t have to. And I can come to you at the time of day that works for you. Look at the session options below. Which one do you think would produce the images that you are going to love?


Day-in-the-Life Session

It is exactly that, a full record of a day in the life of your family. A visual record of what life was like for you and your family at that moment in time. A popular choice for families with young children – a time when life passes in a blur but you want to be able to look back and remember every moment. From wake-up until bedtime, capture it all! Breakfast chaos, school runs, shopping trips, visits with friends and relatives, bath and bedtime routines… I will be there to record all the giggles and the scraped knees. The chores and the moments of real connection. The essence of your family life that otherwise becomes forgotten in the haze of time.


The Dawn Chorus or The Late Shift

From waking up until just after lunch. Think lazy morning cuddles, bed hair, morning pancakes…

OR

From lunch time until bedtime. Grocery shopping, school runs,making and eating dinner, bedtime stories, sleepy babies… If a full day would be just too much, choose which part of the day you love the most!


Slice-of-Life Session

A four hour session taken at any time of day which captures your normal every-day routines. It can include time at home plus an outdoor activity.


Family Time Session

A two hour session centred around a specific family activity such as a summer barbecue, a baking session, playing board games, a special celebration, a country walk or a visit to a play park.


Memories Preserved in Print

I am passionate about print. If you allow me to photograph you and your loved ones, you will walk away with beautiful prints that will take pride of place in your home. So many of us allow our precious memories to float off into the cloud to never be seen again. But it is so important for our children and future generations to have a real picture to look at, hold, take with them every time they move house and look back on for years and years to come. That is why every session, whether family or portrait, includes prints of some kind; from stunning pieces of wall art, to keepsake boxes of prints or photobooks for little ones to flick through again and again.


What does a family session include?

  • before your session we will have a telephone or in-person chat about what you to expect from a documentary family session
  • you will receive a ‘What you need to know to have a successful family session’ pdf
  • we will have a relaxed photoshoot in the comfort of your home or out and about, lasting from a few hours to a full day*
  • the best images from your session will be artistically edited**
  • you will have a relaxed viewing session when you will see you photos for the first time and receive your online gallery details*** plus a special digital slideshow of your family session
  • you will also receive a keepsake box containing 6×4 prints of your images (and have the opportunity to order any further products)
  • finally you will be eligible to enter our referral programme to earn further prints or money off future photography sessions

How much will it cost?

The cost of your session will depend on how long I am with you. Sessions start at £199 for two hours. Four hour, half day and full day session prices are available by request. Your keepsake prints, as well as the social media files and slideshow, are included in the session fee. You will also have the opportunity to purchase additional products during your viewing session.


Not sure what would work best for you? No problem! I would love to chat with you about the different options. You can contact me via my Facebook page or the Contact Form.

black and white photo of two child at the bottom of a slide sitting one on the other laughing with mother and father on either side

Would you like to know more about the person behind the camera? Find out a little bit more about what makes me tick here.


***NEW*** The Gift of Family Photographs

To find out more about my ‘Portraits of Togetherness‘ Project, giving something back to our NHS staff, Keyworkers and Volunteers, click here.

documentary family photographer offers free shoots to local heroes to say thank you

Vicki came to our home for a family photo session with my 2 children and I. She was incredibly intuitive with the children, and respectful of their feelings relating to being photographed, ensuring there was no pressure to smile. The photos she captured are so natural and unforced, and really capture our real-life selves, without any of the awkwardness so often seen in studio portraits. I’d recommend her highly, and will be asking her to take some more pictures of us soon.” Kate


*I offer 2 hour, 4 hour, half day or full day sessions, please contact me to discuss your requirements

**the number of images I deliver will depend on the length of your session

***social media files are included in each package. These files are compressed to make them ideal to share on your social media platforms. I also offer high resolution files for printing at an additional cost. Please note social media files will have a small Victoria Clare Photography watermark, this will not detract from the image.



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