Where do you Keep Your Photographs?

Where do you keep your photographs Sarah Mason Photography

When I lived in London, I probably didn’t visit home as much as I should have done, but when I did, there were a few things I could always rely on. The temperature dropping by a few degrees whilst travelling up the M1, my sister moving more stuff into my old room (the slow take over), and a roast dinner on the Sunday before I set off back down south. And then another routine started on one of these visits.  After the plates were cleared, washed and dried, Mum would open the dresser and out came the old family photos. Kept in a 70’s Quality Street tin, I still love the sound of the lid being lifted, and the rustle of the photo packets inside, like a lucky dip, which era were we going to pick out first? Will it be the 80’s Franki Says T-Shirts phase, holidays on windy Scottish beaches, building dens in the woods, or would we go further back to when Mum and Dad were growing up?

Over the years, the photos have been even more mixed up, which adds to the surprise element of this little ritual. All the ‘best’ photos have made it into frames on the walls, or displayed on bookshelves and the mantlepiece. But it’s the snap shots in the tin I love the most. Not technically perfect in anyway, but just shots of us on location in places we visited, and almost always looking straight at the camera. Mum had a terrible habit of cutting Dad’s head off in the frame when she was the designated photographer, and there are a collection of these shots too, like little gems amongst the muddle of photos. Mum always has the tin on her knee and passes us the photos. I can always tell when she’s picked up one of the ‘where’s Dad’s head?!’ shots, as her face scrunches up and she lets out a laugh! It’s not even about the photos maybe, it’s about these predictable, yet cosy moments that bring us together as a family.

I know so many of us say how much we should print our photos, and it sometimes takes a bit of effort to do this. We have just had some photos printed and we’re going to be going to our framers soon to get the first images of me Suze and Olive on our walls. And for all the other shots we’ve taken over the past 7 months, we’re going to create albums and print out a bunch of 6x4s. We’re just going to print them so we have something tangible. The thought of Olive sitting there with an old tin on her knee passing them around to her family is such a strange thought right now, but this is why we want to do it. For us to enjoy them now, but to provide those moments in the future where she can just stop for a while and take a look at them with her loved ones.

On one of our visits a couple of years ago, me and Suzi wondered if we could make our own photos wallet, so our families can take away this tangible product from their shoot. We launched our photo wallet last year, we love it so much. It’s a trip down nostalgic lane, for those of us who grew up on taking our films in to be developed, but also provides that tactile product for a family to hold. Maybe some of them will make it into frames, or maybe they’ll stay in their wallet to be looked at over the years.

Do you have a place where you keep your printed photos? Are there any more Quality Street tins out there stuffed with photos? We’d love to hear where you keep them, and how you display them.


Not wanting to be outdone, Dad showed Suzi a few of his favourite photos he’s taken of trees over the years.


As it’s Sunday, hows about getting those photos out and taking a look together after lunch, or maybe making a promise to yourselves to print a few in the next few weeks?

Here’s a blog post you might like, Don’t Let Your Images Grow Up To Be Jegs, written by Jonas Peterson

We’ve created a Pinterest board with a few ideas on ways to display your photos in your home.

And if you’d like to see more about our portrait packages and our photo wallet, here’s a link to that page.

Sarah Mason Photography Family Photography

Capturing Childhood - Taking Better Photos Of Your Kids Part 1

Last year, we were asked by the lovely folk at Canopy & Stars to write a blog about how to take better photos of your kids. We wanted to expand on it this summer as many of you will be spending more time with your littles over the holidays. We thought we'd split it up into three bite size chapters for any budding photographers, or if you just want to capture your times together a little more!

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire

Over the next posts, we'll look at things that will help make your photos pop. Hopefully some of these tips will help you take better photographs, whether you're using your phone or an SLR.


Let's talk about the technical stuff first. We don't want to clog this post up with too many things about the ins and outs of your camera, but it’s good to get chatting about it. If you do have a DSLR, we would absolutely encourage you to try shooting manually, if you haven’t done so already, and take that dial out of Auto. It feels so good to be in charge of your camera, rather than the other way around. There will be a lot of trial and error, some tuts and exasperated hair pulling moments, but it really is worth it in the end! I am pretty much a self taught photographer, and when I was learning, I just took my camera everywhere so I could try photography in all different situations. Family and friends may roll their eyes at you (or maybe that was just my lot!), as you ask them again to stop while you experiment with your settings, but just stick with it. If you don’t have a DSLR, you can still take amazing photographs. Many people are documenting their life with their phone photography, just take a look at Instagram, there are some wonderful accounts to follow. Whatever you are shooting with, we hope these few pointers will help you. 


Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire

WIDE SMILES, wind tangled hair, muddy fingers, sandy toes - for us, we love to capture the essence of childhood. We find that when kids are engaged in an activity & enjoying something they're doing, they forget about us and the camera and for us, that's when we capture the best shots. Photos that reflect character and personalities.

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire

Photography is storytelling, documenting daily life. There doesn’t have to be a special occasion to get your camera out, maybe a trip to the market, your favourite walk, feeding the ducks, or those morning rituals!

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire


If me and Suzi had a choice, we would probably choose to shoot in the golden hours permanently. Those times just after sunrise, or just before sunset. Of course it’s not always practical, but give it a try if you can, you will really see a difference. Sometimes we’ll battle with the harsh overhead sunlight that midday can bring. Living in the Pennies though, we do often come across those dull overcast days, and we don’t mind shooting in these at all.


If it's absolutely bucketing down, it’s probably not going to be too much fun for anyone, but try getting out just after the rain – the light can be lovely.

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire


But if it is raining again - window light can provide lots of atmosphere in a shot. It's best to turn off interior lights.

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire
Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire


In this digital age, it's easy to keep clicking away in the hope you're going to get a few decent shots, I definitely used to be like this. When you are manically clicking away, you can miss those beautiful moments though. So maybe try and slow it down a bit, and wait for those moments that give you the feels.

Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire
Portrait Photography Sarah Mason Photography Yorkshire

We hope you've found this first post helpful. In the next one (which we'll publish at the weekend), we'll have a look at composition, points of view and perspective.

If you'd like to take your photography further, we are running our second Capturing Childhood Retreat on Saturday 22nd & Sunday 23rd September here in Hebden Bridge. This could be for someone about to set up their own portrait photography business, or for people who would like to take better photos of their families and friends. We have just two places left for the weekend. If you'd like to find out more, and book your place, there's a link to the Capturing Childhood Retreat page here.

We hope you have a lovely week, and if you'd like to share any photos you take, we'd love to see them!


Life on the Stairs


When I arrive for a family shoot at home, I always have a little walk round to peek at the light. More often than not, it's spilling onto the staircase. You can almost hear the feet over the past few years. The rushings to school with half done laces, the slow procrastinating walk to bed, parents hollering from the first step that 'tea's on the table'. The patter of pets, carpet worn, and piles of things to take up. Staircases see a lot of life, they're a good spot for a photo.

Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography
Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography

I took the photo below the other day as first light crept into our house. 

Sarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography

I saw moments ahead of us around life on the stairs. In a few weeks, we'll be bringing our baby bean home and gently walking up the stairs for our first night together at home. Up for baths and down to welcome visitors. In a few years, tiny hands holding onto those spindles as first steps are made. Bum shuffles down them, school bags left at the bottom, winter jacket hood hooked over the bannister. Excited feet racing down on Christmas Day morning, a hug on the landing and a moment to stroke the cat on his favourite middle step. Moments to look at the photos hanging on the wall on the way up, and moments to look in the mirror on the way down. In this moment, I saw life on these stairs. 

SMPhoto_078 (1).jpgSarah Mason Photography, Yorkshire portrait photographer, family photography

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