Why did we decide to run 5km for the NHS during the Coronavirus Pandemic
Running 5km for NHS was our way of saying THANK YOU because during Lockdown I feel very guilty but privileged to able to stay at home, safe, with my children.
Unable to work, as a non essential business, this to is a small price to pay. At home I am able to spend time with my children: having fun, homeschooling and teaching them life skills. All the while, others are out there risking themselves everyday and then coming home to their family….Still trying to keep everyone safe!
Getting fitter during Lockdown.
A few times a week I have been able to get out for a run. Away from others and slowly building up my fitness. Something that lots of NHS workers have probably been unable to do, during this troubling time.
My children have been spent days with me, as a family: playing on the trampoline, cooking, taking the dog for walk; enjoying carefree days.
Saying thanks to the NHS.
My daughters football team, Southwater Royals Girls Under 13, challenged the girls to run 5km for NHS. So I decided my two children should attempt that challenge.
Having just built up to 5km myself, I told them we would just take it slowly, as neither of them had run that far before and nor had they done any training for it! Although as children they are constantly on the move. My daughter also loves athletics so she did have a head start in fitness. All because other people out there are working VERY hard to keep us safe.
The 5km run for the NHS
We set off early morning and both children were quite excited. The start was tough because it took a little while to warm up and set our pace.
Before long we all settled into a good pace and we were all smiling and chatting. The route we did was great because it had 4 sections, which meant you felt like to were checking off the miles pretty quickly. It was also through the beautiful countryside around Southwater so really nice and peaceful!
The final leg is where things got a bit harder but both children were still brilliant. Preferring to sprint, my daughter would run off and then went for us to catch up. Whereas my son, who doesn’t normally run took the slow and steady option. I was amazed by his determination because he didn’t walk even when he was really tired!
What amazes me most is how normal they both looked when we finished. I’m really proud of them both because they took the challenge on without any complaints and it was a brilliant thing to do as a family. If anyone would like to give a donation to the NHS please click 5k for NHS
If you would like to find out more information about Claire Wilders Photography and the services that we offer please click here
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HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN DIY CANVAS PHOTOGRAPHY BACKDROP
Being on lockdown and having watched many photography training videos I decided to attempt to paint my own DIY canvas photography backdrop.
Photography requires lots of equipment to keep photos current but none of this equipment is cheap. However, there are lots of ways that props can be made on a budget so I thought I would have a go at one. A new backdrop.
Paint of your choice – being on lockdown I couldn’t get to the shops and because I wanted it beige or brown I used some old fence paint. I used Ronseal One Coat in dark oak matt because that is all I had. I also used some old white matt emulsion.
A 12ft x9ft canvas backdrop. Click HERE to visit Amazon where I bought the backdrop
A fluffy roller. Click HERE to see which roller I bought.
Old trampoline cover to lay on the floor to stop it staining the grass. Tarpaulin or plastic sheets could also be used.
Being impatient when it comes to DIY I decided to just wing it! I laid the canvas on an old trampoline cover, so that the paint didn’t wreck the grass. I had heard of people priming the canvas or buying a primed one but I didn’t do either. Others had also pinned their canvas to the ground but I didn’t do this either. I wanted to use the texture and bumpiness of the grass to help me when adding texture to the canvas.
With the paint, I didn’t have a plan because again I wanted it to be random. Using a roller was easier because you could add a decent amount of paint to the canvas and then spread it around at random.
Mixing The Paint
To start off I added white emulsion to the paint tray and then added a small amount of fence paint so that its wasn’t too dark, as I wanted the centre to be lighter than the outsides. I also added a small amount of water to thin the paint down a bit. A few people have added fabric softer to the paint, so that the canvas is more supple at the end. I forgot to do this but the crustier feel doesn’t bother me. To paint the canvas I started in the middle but just slapped the paint on and continued all over the place until I emptied the tray.
Each time I filled the tray, the mixture got darker plus the paint wasn’t always mix it properly. Meaning there was bits of dark and light paint all over the canvas, to add to the texture. As it dried I did make certain areas a bit darker, as the white came through as it dried. Although this is better than the canvas coming out too dark. This day was also really warm so the canvas did dry quickly.
The Finished Product
As a first attempt I was really pleased with this canvas, especially as it only cost me the price of a backdrop. Which was £21. I did cut the backdrop down a bit as it was rather large for my space but the length is brilliant. There is a seem in the middle but with a wide aperture you can’t see it. Plus if you cut it down to make smaller backdrops, this won’t be an issue. TOP TIP… make sure you have the seam underneath.. you’ll notice mine is on the backdrop side! Something I didn’t think about in my haste to start painting.
I’m really pleased with the finished product. It cost me a day out of my time and was pretty easy to do. Both emulsion and fence paint seemed to work okay and I really like the texture it gives in both colour and black and white. Neither of these photos were taken with studio lights, the canvas was hung up and I took a quick photo of my son looking out of the window. Am I going to paint more? YES! Watch this space!!
If you’d like to see this backdrop in use during your photo session please visit my Families session to view details.
Can you believe the summer is over and its only 11 weeks today until Christmas!
BUT… between now and then is my favourite time.. Autumn. Autumn photography sessions are one of my favourite family sessions because this season is just gorgeous. The light at this time of year is just stunning and it is the perfect backdrop for your family.
Around Horsham and Crawley there are some lovely places to spend a glorious autumn day with your family or dog. I thought I would share a few of my favourites, plus a few of my dedicated followers have given me their ideas too.
For more information on Family Sessions please click here
My favourite places to visit:
Tilgate Park, Crawley, is my absolute favourite park! No matter where I have lived no park has ever been as good as Tilgate.
Not only is it absolutely stunning but there is so much to do. Whether it is building dens and climbing the trees in the woods, walking round the lake and having a picnic or visiting the nature reserve. Other things to do here include Go Ape, play park, rowing boats, Smith and Western. It is so easy to spend the day here and is a wonderful place to tire out the children without spending a fortune. Parking is £1 per hour but all proceeds do go back into the park and for the nature centre it is only £4 for an adult and £3 for age 3-16yr olds.
Buchan Park is a place where I spend many days during my childhood climbing trees and having picnics.
This is definitely a back to nature kind of place. There is ample free parking and its only a short walk to a beautiful lake and the perfect paths for kicking leaves or walking the dog.
Sheffield Park this National Park is absolutely stunning in the autumn.
The colours around the lake are like no other. There is no tree climbing in the actual gardens but they do put on events for children to do throughout the year. However, there is a natural play area a short walk away and this includes a den area and soon to be replaced huge swing!
The lake provides a great place for swimming and water sports during the summer and then year round is the Dinosaur Park. A great place to spend the afternoon with lots to entertain the children. In the summer it gets extremely busy with families picnicking either around the lake or in the dinosaur park but as the nights close in and days get cooler it definitely gets much quieter.
Petworth Park is another National Trust place which is home to hundreds of deer.
There is a paying car park (free for NT) which provides easy access to the park. It’s a beautiful place to sit and watch the deer or wander along the many paths around the park.
Why have a newborn baby photography session for a new baby, isn’t life crazy enough without having to schedule in a photo shoot as soon as they arrive?
You are quite right, the first weeks are crazy and therefore go past in a blur.
However, by planning ahead, while you are pregnant, you will appreciate being having had a newborn baby photo session booked in. t They will last a couple of hours but the memories will be there forever. Babies grow so fast in the first couple of weeks and you very quickly forget how tiny they looked when they first arrived home.
This session allows you to capture those gorgeous features forever while having a few hours to sit back and relax! Some parents have even been known to fall asleep because the studio is warm, they know their baby is in safe hands and finally they are able to relax for a few minutes.
How to book?
We are know due dates change so we book your newborn baby photography session for your due date. When your new baby arrives we can then confirm a suitable date, ideally within the first 14 days. We aim for that because this is when your baby still loves to be curled up, which makes posing easier. You can still book a session after this date, some poses may just take a little longer.
Your baby is MY priority so the session is completely baby led! If they need feeding or cuddles, we stop for a break until they are ready. The session normally takes around 3 hours because your little one normally needs a few rests in between. I also love to capture a few photos of you as a family so feel free to bring siblings along too.
If you would like more information on booking a newborn baby photography session do not hesitate to get in touch or visit my Newborn baby page HERE
Why are mothers day photography sessions important? Let me ask you a question? Are you one of the organised people that can think of awesome presents months in advance or are you the person that leaves it to the last moment?
Whichever you are, I can help…. because I am running photo sessions to celebrate Mothers Day. We are all getting older and know that our parents won’t be around forever. But do you have any recent photos of you and your mum? Or of you and your children? We all have the excuses, I want to lose weight, I hate having my photo taken but what if you didn’t have the photo to look back on? How would you feel?
You today are who your children will look back on and your mum today is looking her best. Lets capture those beautiful memories with a Mothers Day Photography Session.
Whether it is for:
Your own mum (or dad, if from a single parent family.. it’s a celebration remember), wife, girlfriend, nanny or grandma. Daughter and her family or even just your children. The choice is yours.
I have sessions available…
How does the session work?
This day is about celebrating all mums, regardless of the age of their children, and all the amazing thing they do for us.
Whether you would like a voucher to be given on the day so that you can come at a later date as a family… or booking it prior to Mothers Day so that you can give the gift on the actual day. The choice is yours. This is a celebration of mums so feel free to bring three generations of families. I want your Mothers Day Photo Session to be memorable day providing wonderful pieces of art that you can proudly show on your wall for many years to come.
Where are the sessions held?
Depending on your family size session can be held at your home, in my home studio or outside in the garden or local park. When booking a session together we can discuss the options and which one will work better for your family.
Wall Art will also be available to purchase and will include a 10% discount to celebrate our mums!
Please click HERE to visit the Family Photography page for more information. If you would like to get in touch please mention Mothers Day.
I love the spring and after living away from Sussex for the last 20 years it doesn’t stop surprising me with its beauty!
Whilst driving home from another of the children’s clubs last night we drove past this field. A quick U turn and a screeching halt in a lay by I bundled the children out of the car to enjoy the moment.
This was at the edge of the lay by with the sun setting in the background, while my daughter was in the field watching it set.
They then decided they wanted to hide along the path before we jumped back in the car and headed home.
I think writing this blog and technology going wrong actually took longer to do than capturing a lovely moment with my children…
So, put down your tablet, grab a camera and go capture a moment.. happy snapping this spring x