Posts in Family
Father's Day Mini Sessions | Cudmore Grove | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

So, if you’re a keen follower here, you might remember that this year for Mother’s Day I decided to hold beachy mini sessions down at Cudmore Grove in Mersea to celebrate our wonderful mothers or mother-figures.

Well, they were so successful that I’ve decided to run Father’s Day Mini Sessions too, so get excited!

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Photographing a Military Honours Burial at the USAFA, Colorado | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

A few weeks ago, I flew to the USA to photograph something both incredibly important and incredibly difficult. It was the kind of opportunity I was initially unsure about how to respond to because it was one that was so important, but one that I am so glad I had the courage to say yes to, because it was something I now consider a highlight in my career…

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Mother's Day Mini Sessions | Cudmore Grove | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

Our parents deserve to be celebrated don’t they? Luckily, there’s two occasions every year where we can celebrate everything they do for us, those being Mother’s Day and Father’s Day!

This year, to celebrate Mother’s Day, I’m offering mini sessions! I know how difficult it can be to round up all of the family for a lifestyle session, but mini sessions are just a quarter of the length of my usual lifestyle sessions, at just 30 minutes long, and these ones are for a very special price, too!

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Fletcher's At-Home Mini Newborn Session | Barnstaple, North Devon | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

Fletchers at-home newborn session is still up there as one of my very favourites. Laura and Lee’s home was full of beautiful natural light, which poured through the windows of their little house in North Devon and bounced off of all of the neutral-toned decor filled within. Honestly it was a photographer’s dream… and don’t get me started on the adorable little monogram onesie Fletcher was sporting!

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Baby Beau | Crow Point, North Devon Family Session | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

So Beau’s mum, Kelly, and I actually go way back. She is the twin sister of one of my very best school friends, the first girl to befriend me when I moved to Devon as the shy 14 year old I was. When she fell pregnant and asked me to do Beau’s baby photos, I was so excited, if not a little nervous, because the last time I properly saw Kelly was probably in 2012! I also love that she and Jordan waited until Beau was just a little older, rather than being a newborn before she booked to do these photos, because he had so many hilarious expressions to show us, and had perfected his grumpy face almost perfectly for the photos!

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Tyler Family's Christmas Session | Hertfordshire Extended Family Session | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

This might just be the biggest family I have photographed in one go!

When my friend (and amazing photographer!) Emily asked me to take her family portraits, I was so over the moon! It is always such a privilege when another creative (especially a photographer!) asks you to take photos with them, and this would be a lovely session to take some more for the family album.

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Dedham Extended Family Session | McPherson Family | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

This extended family session was truly special, and let me give you a bit of background as to why…

Laurel Beth first got in touch with me when I was shooting a wedding in December, and her enquiry was just so sweet that during my meal break I had to reply! She told me that she and husband Ryan had moved to the UK back in spring last year for work, and that this was meant to be their first family Christmas apart. Having experienced having long distance family and relationships myself, I totally knew how she felt. However, as I read on, I was so overjoyed to hear that her family had planned to fly from Tennessee to the UK to spend Christmas all together - how precious is that?!

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Post-Wedding Sessions | The Clark Family | Grace Elizabeth, Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding Photographer

This blog post is going to be introducing something new to you - my post wedding sessions! I am so excited to launch these, because I think they might just be a huge game changer (not to mention a stress reliever!) when it comes to the formal photos on your wedding day…

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Best of 2018 | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

What an absolute year 2018 was. It was the year I went from doing photography on the side, to going fully self employed, and for that, I am so very grateful. 2018 gave me the opportunity to photograph the most amazing weddings and lifestyle sessions, and to meet so many amazing people. It was a year full of love, I started the #GoldDustProject, I photographed quite a few charity events and I documented a few eco friendly vegan events too. So here it is, a round up of the best moments of 2018!

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Winter Family Beach Sunset Session at Cudmore Grove | Bushell Family | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

I first met Jo (also a wonderful family photographer!) through one of my Gold Dust Project participants, Lorna. After photographing Lorna with her little ones at her home (and spending a little too much time chatting at the end!), just as I was leaving, Lorna’s good friend Jo turned up for a catch up with her. I never expected that a few months down the line, Jo and husband Stephen would be looking for family photos. It is always a HUGE compliment when another photographer wants to book in with me!

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Cosy Woodland Extended Family Session | The Dow's | Grace Elizabeth, Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer, Colchester, Essex

After heading to take a few photos with Joe and Emily’s grandmother at her home, we all drove a short distance to Donyland Woods on a chilly but sunny November morning, somewhere that Joe and Emily spent many hours exploring as kids with their parents and grandparents. I am always happy to suggest photo locations but more often than not, it’s lovely when you take the lead because it lets us make memories in a place which is probably already packed full to the brim of memories from years gone past!

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Fitch Family Session at Colchester Castle Park | Grace Elizabeth | Alternative Wedding Photographer Colchester, Essex

So, here's a funny story... I used to actually go to school with Emily-May, who booked this family session with me to celebrate her mum's birthday... But I hadn't seen Emily in almost ten years! It was so surreal to catch up with her and meet the rest of her family, and what a fun session this was!

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Barker's Summer Evening Extended Family Session | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

I was admittedly a little bit lost on the way to the Barker family session, and after a quick phone call to Bryony, who booked the session, I was pointed in the direction of the house - turns out no one can find it! A few moments later, and still a bit confused, I was excitedly greeted by three little girls, waving at me with huge grins from across the road. 'Ah, that'll be the house then!' I knew right off the bat that this would be a lot of fun, because the girls were so keen. I always love an extended family session, and the Barker family's session was no exception!

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The Parker's Suffolk Extended Family Session | Grace Elizabeth | Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer, Colchester, Essex

When the Parker's got in touch with me a little while ago about booking their extended family session, I was super excited, because the session was going to be a surprise! Elizabeth's mum was celebrating her birthday the day of the shoot, and the day after, her parents were celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary, so it was such a lovely gesture to book the session for those reasons! It made it even more special!


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A Laid Back Woodland Family Session with the Chandrasiri's | Grace Elizabeth | Alternative Wedding Photographer, Colchester Essex

The family travelled over an hour to come and see me, and we explored Highwoods Country Park, here in Colchester where I live. It is one of my favourite spots for sessions, plus I like the challenge of always trying to find new parts within the forest!. It was a super warm day, and the Chandrasiri's were so organised that they even brought multiple outfit choices with them - oh how I excited I was! I LOVE an organised family and the different outfit choices were amazing. I tell you, Mira and Marianna both do a fabulous job of co-ordinating outfits for their bookings!

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Cooper's Mersea Island Beach Newborn Session | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

Amy was quite heavily pregnant at the time, and as the couple didn't want to do an engagement session, I offered to do newborn photographs instead! You could really tell that their family dynamic was so important to them, especially with son Hudson (who was super excited about having a little sibling!), so I was more than happy to do this instead!

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Noi's Winter Woodland Family Session | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex, Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

I've shot Noi's when he was still in his mum's tummy, then shot his newborn photos, and finally I got to see him and his mum and dad again at the very end of last year. I cannot believe how he is now almost half of my height! I didn't get a chance to blog their sweet session at the time as I was in the process of moving over to a new website host, so I thought why not reminisce on their chilly winter family session now?! 

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The Ciantar's Family Session at Crow Point, North Devon | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

I loved photographing these guys, and it was the perfect place to let off some steam for their eldest son and their pup too! It was windy but warm, one of those stormy summer evenings, and it was such a blast getting to know them and exploring the area more than I had done before!

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Tommy's Family Session on a North Devon Farm | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

Allow me to introduce you to two of my lovely and oldest friends, Lauren and Dylan. Lauren, Dylan and I go way back, in fact, we all went to school together when I lived in Devon! Since then, the two have fallen in love, are currently engaged to be married, and have two absolutely beautiful little ones, Kaylah and Tommy.

There is actually a bit of a funny story towards me finding out Lauren was pregnant again with Tommy...

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Flossie's Family Session at Arger Fen, Suffolk | Grace Elizabeth | Colchester, Essex Alternative Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer

Katie and Jono had the perfect little girl, Flossie, and what a cutie she is (you'll get to see her in a minute!) But sadly, her first few months on the planet were met with illness, meaning that the family didn't have a chance to do those family portraits they envisioned in the early days. Thankfully, Flossie soon became a lot better, so we headed to the beautiful Arger Fen on the Essex and Suffolk border for their family photographs when she turned around six months old.

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