Interview with Gemma Cardona // Paddy's Purpose
I'll never forget our first meeting on a photoshoot for Dorset Children's Foundation.
We had a connection immediately, which is the loveliest feeling in my universe.
You are quite experienced with photoshoots with Paddy.
What do the photos mean to you?
You’re so right, from our very first meeting we connected, and I hoped we might become friends.
Over the years Paddy has been asked to attend photo shoots for several children’s charities that support us, and I have always felt honoured to be able to give a little back to promote their services. Paddy has such an expressive face and very photogenic, his image has appeared in many leaflets, posters and even on the back of a double decker bus!
While it’s nice to have these images, the photoshoots have always taken place on location, they’re posed pictures that don’t capture a memory and memories to me are so important.
Paddy has a life limiting condition, he is severely epileptic and has cerebral palsy.
Both conditions can cause complications and his life expectancy is much less than average.
To live with this knowledge makes you want to capture every moment of life and preserve it forever, ‘just in-case’.
I can confirm that Paddy is a dream to photograph - his eyes are just amazing!
After that formal shoot for the charity, we started chatting and I was so excited to ask you if you would let me take photos of your everyday moments.
And you said yes :)
When I was offered the opportunity of a home photo shoot that would capture our everyday life, I thought it would be an amazing opportunity to create lasting memories for us but also I could see how being able to share pictures of our day to life would help enhance my educational work.
As someone that works to create awareness through Paddy's purpose and increase understanding of people with disabilities, I am used to talking about our life in a very honest and candid way, but never had the images to illustrate my words.
Now when I visit a company or school to share our story, I can show them our pictures, this has really added to my work and increased the impact of my presentations.
The photos are so powerful and really give people a glimpse into our day to day world.
I want the world to see that Paddy is human, and his family are very ‘normal’.
I want to share our truth and show what goes on behind our closed door, the good and the bad.
We have achieved that with this photo shoot.
On an even more personal level, as a mother I am always doubting myself, feeling not quite good enough (as most mothers do).
To be able to take a step back and view myself and my family through a lens has been incredibly powerful.
To see my beautiful family, in harmony, connecting, playing, caring, I look at these pictures and see myself in a new light.
I see a family at peace in a difficult world and I feel proud for all I have achieved.
This is so importrant, Gemma!
Your journey has huge ups and downs and I'm truly grateful for you to leting us be close to you.
You know, that your session is so special to me and I'm in tears putting the photos together for this post.
Can't wait to hug you again!
With Lots of LOVE,
In-home family sessions are the best - especially with newborn snuggles :)
When it comes to capturing family memories, we love to stay real.
Visit the family in the warmth of their own home where they feel the coziest - in their own rythm and routins - gives us the best opportunity to get the most natural and unique shots of them.
Thank you again for K&K for having us and can't wait to see you again next year!
We love to dance around our families beautiful chaos!
When we scedule an appointment, the priority is always their daily routine.
Trying to find that space where the kids are their happiest -> when that happens, parents relax and the magic happens :)
We are always flexible!
Typical, that the toddler has her longest nap ever on that specific day, the newborn has growth spurts, so breastfeeding seems never ending, etc etc.
We've been there!
We're happy to leave our home earlier to capture those happy moments, or wait in the car until everyone is ready, or just stay with you in your kitchen and have a good chat before they wake up (ok, maybe take some cute photos of them sleeping :) )
We've been extremly lucky with this session as the family's happy time coincided with the most beutiful light outside, so driving just 10 min to get their favorite field to take some great portraits there was the best decision!
With very gentle directions we created situations where they can connect to one anothers and really be themselves.
A new addition to the family is always a challenge as well as a miracle - we are here to show you how truly beautiful and magical you are!
Do you want to book your family session with us?
Let's talk! xx
Let's get social!
At the beginning of May, on a crazy busy afternoon, we made the decision: we need a holiday!
We have never had a proper family holiday before, so we loved the idea to explore something new, only the 3 of us!
So we were sitting in a coffee shop and tried to find a destination for a certain day, when we were booked for a session close to the Gatwick airport.
That's how we found lovely Barcelona, and we immediately booked our tickets - we felt incredibly cool and grown ups :D
One month later it was time to go and we were beyond excited!
We had all those beautiful ideas, and we were sure that we'll spend the best 3 days ever in Spain :D
On Friday afternoon we've got the e-mail from the nursery that sickness bug is around.... yes....yesss.....yeeeeeess.....
So on Saturday evening Szaffi got the tummy bug on the plane. You can imagine :)
As we didn't have much sleep on our first night, Szaffi was sleeping on my back in our beloved Tula carrier for hours and hours.
Our memorable first day in Barcelona :) :) :)
At least we checked the Sagrada Familia, but the all I remember is the endless queuing for the perfect point for all those fake and "perfect" instagram selfies. Guys, it was scary!
I wanted to scream like heeeeeeeeey, people! stop living your life on social media, cuddle your kids, kiss your spouse and enjoy your time here but forget your bloody phone for at least 5 minutes!!!
So, we don't have any selfies from the popular places.
We ate something and played a lot in the playground. We had fun and we felt absolutely FREEEEEE!
We had our accomodation in El Masnou.
The town El Masnou is a municipality in the province of Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain and features 2 popular beaches.
So we spent the 2nd day down the beach :)
We had so much fun there, and it really felt like a holiday!
In the afternoon we went back to our accomodation, and then we had the chance to capture some reaaaally important family moment for ourselves :)
These are the important moments for us.
That's what we will put it on the wall and into our family album.
All of these are captured with a Canon 6D and a Sigma 24mm, using the EOS Remote app on our phones.
If you want to have a contact to this house, just let us know!
Awfully rainy day, 18*C....
We had tickets to the Guell Park, and we experienced the same thing like at the Sagrada Familia: tons of fake smiles and frustrated people around waiting for certain points to have the best selfies.
So again... we don't have any selfies from there :D
The park is gorgeous itself, but trust me, you won't need to take the 215218485184. selfie there - it's gonna be absolutely the same like everyone else have :D
Try to connect with eachothers and reconnect yourself - that's the holiday all about :)
Szandra & Gabor
Yeah, guys.... in this post I'd like to talk about my feelings and experiences.
As many of you know, I wanted to quit photography last year.
I was exhausted, I felt overwhelmed, I was struggling with my anxiety and I had a really close friend who "broke up" with me, so I needed time and space around me to keep my sh*t together.
I asked the Universe to help me, send a sign, just please let me know what is my way in this life.
I was open to be a shop assistant, a doctor, or even a diver, I really didn't mind!
Then the Universe was in her funny mood, so she sent me an award from the Voice competition (I was the winner of the Love&Connection cathegory).
I said ok, but I still took a few steps back from photography.
Who knows what happened, but in the first couple of month in 2019, completely out of my control, loads of awesome project found us, and the compliments arrived from the most unexpected places.
I was still careful and considered, but in March we've got a heartwarming and life changing e-mail.
Niké sent us a long and honest message, where she was talking about how she found us (accidantly) on the Internet, and since that she is sure: she wants to learn photography from us.
At first glance I thought I have nothing to give, nothing to teach as I'm still so far from where I want to be.
But in such a short time I realized, it's ok, I know my limits, but I have camera in my hands for almost 5 years, Gabor is doing photography over 15 years, so there must be something we can give!
Niké moved to Bournemouth for 1 year with her beloved family, so after a nice coffee we made the decision - let's try to figure it out together!
We were totally honest with her, mentioned that we have no experience with teaching, but this whole thing is tickling our minds, so let's dig in deep, and see what we can do together :)
The following day we were brainstorming a lot with Gab, how should we start with all the technical knowledge, etc...
then I felt, stop it!
If someone wants to learn from us, we should teach what we really know!
Emotions and connection, with ourselves and with our clients.
How could we teach it without giving real experience?!
So my criterion was: I'm happy to teach her, if we start the journey with a family photo shoot, where she can feel in her bones how the mothers are feeling prior and on the photoshoot, what is the client experience looks like, etc etc.
Many-many important things what we've learnt from our mistakes and through the self-portrait project.
She said ok, and I was over the Moon!
I had a pre-session meeting with them, then the mini session (in-home part and down the beach), the a viewing session afterwards.
So many feelings and experience to work with during her journey!
And of course, now we're teaching her all the boring technical details, but our goal is to give her our best during this year in a joyful way, where she can connect with herself, then she can create her own art.
Thank you Niké for giving our mojo back - it means the world to us!
Heidi + Indie // Bournemouth
Alexandra Szigeti and Gabor Csako