Christenings are very moving ceremonies: a child being blessed and welcomed into a church community, surrounded by his / her family. They are joyful events and Charlie's, last weekend, was no different.
Charlie loved the service and is clearly already a people person! He had an almost constant smile on his face and didn't even make a fuss at the moment of baptism.
After the service, Roger and Sarah (Charlie's parents) had asked me to get some family groups together as relations from all over the world had come to celebrate Charlie's christening. We managed to persuade everyone to gather in one place at one time and got a few great family shots, with just minutes to spare before Sarah's brother had to leave to catch a plane!
As you can see, they are a pretty photogenic family so it wasn't hard to get some beautiful images of them! Evie was a particularly excellent model and seemed fascinated with my camera so I got some lovely portrait shots of her and her very sweet cousin just after the service.
After church, it was back to their house for a party! Everyone was clearly having a lovely time: catching up after long absences, meeting new people, sharing old jokes and trying not to trip over one of the many, many small children weaving their way between people's legs!
At events, I always try and get images of conversations and interactions that spark questions when looking through the photos after the event. Who was talking to whom? What might they have been saying? Were they sharing a joke or a serious story?
I also aim to get as many individual portrait shots as possible. Not posed, but natural looking. Friends and family looking relaxed, without their 'photo smile' (go on, admit it, you know you've got one!).
I hope it doesn't sound pompous to say that I see myself as a witness at an event such as this. Recording fleeting but wonderful moments that so often get forgotten. Harry (in the bottom left photo, above) was expressing his fledgling views on football. It won't be long before his football knowledge far surpasses his father's and his father's friends (!), but this photo is a record of that moment when he felt included in the adult discussion, when he was heard and his opinion was valued. You can see that in his eyes. He is thrilled to be included.
All these photos are a moment like that and I get tremendous joy from capturing each of them.
Oh dear, I seem to have become quite sentimental, thinking about how much it means to me to be a photographer. I shall get back on track with a corker of a photo of Charlie, enjoying every minute of his big day. And quite right too. It was an excellent day! Thanks for letting me come along, Charlie!