What was your career path? How did you get from being an aspiring photographer to actually doing it full time for a living?
I was always the one with a camera in my hand. At 16 my mum purchased a little pink compact camera, and it came with me everywhere I went. I actually failed photography at high school.
I lived & went to school in Denmark when I was 18. Photography, specifically street photography was my love at the time! I would travel around and just photograph people and places. I went to a World Press Photography exhibition in Copenhagen and immediately wanted to become a photojournalist. The way they documented life really fascinated me. I trained in Journalism in Hamilton, intending to go overseas once I was done to photograph conflict Journalism, but I met the love of my life Aaron instead and we somehow got into taking photos in town (yes I was the "town" photographer who captured you having too much to drink in Agenda & Flow bar back in the dayyyy). From here, Aaron was asked to photograph a friends wedding and we both absolutely adored it. So we started "The Official Photographers" together and we have been photographing weddings for coming up 10 years!
With our three year old Bjorn & our rainbow baby girl due in Nov, I became super interested in kids & capturing all their quirks. My Motherhood brand Shan Radford Photography was rebranded this year & I am really focusing on documenting the FUN in kids and families, plus the beauty in Maternity & Birth Photography too.
I've just started a series on "The Journey to Motherhood" where I am talking to women about their experiences with Miscarriage, IVF, etc. so I am really excited to share these soon.
I went from wanting my images to be in TIME magazine, to capturing the real & raw emotions of everyday life and I am bloody stoked to be doing so.
How would you describe your photography style?
Honestly, this is such a HARD question on style. It changes & I am adapting daily as I continue my journey, but for the most part it's capturing the beauty in Motherhood. From maternity shoots at sunset to raw birth photography and then lifetsyle images at home with families. I'd rather capture the kids jumping on the bed, than them awkwardly smiling at the camera. It really is photographing "good times in peoples lives".
I never know what to wear during a photoshoot. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Help!
Yes! I have a "What to wear guide" I send to all my families to help with this. But the key is to make sure you feel amazing! Put yourself first for once girlllll, be confident and LOVE what you wear and then choose what everyone else is wearing next. Choose coordinating colours, not matching.
I always worry my kiddos won’t listen or participate during a photoshoot. How can I better prepare them?
Honestly, do not stress! Kids are kids, they are unpredictable and we just go with the flow. I get them involved and do things they will enjoy! To prepare them for the shoot you can talk to them like I'm a friend and we are off to have heaps of fun together, so they get excited to be hanging out with me from the get go! Oh and bribes are always a good idea too.
What is the best parenting advice you have received?
Date your husband/partner haha! Remember where it all began.
I think any parent has received so much advise around the kids and what to do, but the truth is you just have to find what works for you and your family. There's no "How to" book on anything. But one thing we do is to make sure our relationship is solid so we can be there for our boy.
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