It's no secret that I am not a fan of shopping centre photographers AT ALL, for a multitude of reasons.
I firmly believe that every child is worth more than a 15 minute quickie in a shopping centre... Mine certainly are.
But my main reason, is the consistent display of unsafe practices I witness with my own eyes time and time again by these pop up photographers in shopping centres. It really, really drives me crazy to see the repeated blatant disregard for the safety of people's children.
All reputable professional photographers, who care about their clients, adopt, promote and practice safe child handling techniques for every session, for every child. There is no excuse for being purposefully unsafe with anyone's child. Ever.
As a parent, the safety of my children is paramount. Isn't yours?
When a client entrusts me with the privilege of photographing their child, at whatever stage of their lives, but especially at the newborn stage, safety always has to be my priority, over 'getting that shot'.
This image, taken in February 2015, is of a regular pop-up shopping centre photographer.
For me, the safety risk here makes me more than a little uneasy.
Baby is perched on a small black box high off the ground (as demonstrated by the photographer who is bending down) and could easily topple off it and straight to the floor. Babies at this age are still prone to 'startling' and this baby was not confident or strong enough to lift it's head up without that head wobble that is common for this age.
When I approached this photography business to discuss the potential risk they were putting this person's child at, they told me they are always safe.
Today, the SAME photography business as the one shown in the above image, is here again, but this time, with an obviously much younger baby, who is perched on top of this basket, and not inside it. (Thank you to Victoria from Victoria Poulton Photography for pointing that out).
PLEASE, if you see shopping centre photographers do this type of thing, don't just keep walking. Say something.
Or better yet, stop supporting businesses like this that clearly don't practice safety at all with their clients' children.
This is the same business, on two separate occasions: February 2015 and July 2015. The obviously different staff, participating in the same unsafe practices, leads me to believe that this company, does not train its staff in safe practices at all.
Honour your child by investing in professional photography that celebrates safety and quality.
Here's a couple of examples of baby photography being practiced safety with the use of props. THE SAFE WAY.
Image by Shannon Smith Photography.
Image by Emily Black Photography.
Alyson Brimecombe of Kuya Bunso Photography is an Accredited Professional Photographer with the Australian Institute of Professional Photographers and a Certified Professional Photographer with the Professional Photographers Association of Queensland.