City Lifestyle

Want to start a publication?

Learn More

Featured Article

Pose Whisperer Extraordinaire

95% of the work is done before the shoot

Meeting Anne Geddes at first didn’t feel ‘new’ to me as I’d done my research and already felt I knew her. As a photographer myself, I expected to feel some nervousness, but she’s a real person, just like all of us – human, with understandably many interesting stories to tell.  Anne comes from a world of inspiration, beginning her career over 35 years ago, photographing children and families, initially with an early Pentax K1000 camera loaned to her by husband Kel.  Both Australians, on a family move to New Zealand in the mid 1980’s (following Kel’s 30-year television career) her early images gained attention when a prominent local magazine printed one of them full page … helping launch her then budding career. Many of her iconic images were created in her studio in Auckland, where the family lived for 18 years.

For the first 10 years of her long career, Anne exclusively did private portraiture. And these years proved invaluable to her, as by trial and error, she gradually learned how differently children react at various ages.  As Anne explained, it’s difficult at the best of times to connect with a child who considers you a stranger.  To engage quickly and instinctively with them to create images that they and their families will treasure forever definitely puts an extra pressure on that connection.  It requires deep reserves of energy and focus, particularly with the very young ones.  But her reward was always when parents would say that she’d thoroughly captured their child’s personality.  She joked that she has done the requisite ‘10,000 hours’ many times over, and now approaches her shoots with the calm knowledge that she can handle any circumstances that children create and come out of it with beautiful imagery.

Along with her portraiture work in those early days, to strengthen her own creativity, once a month Anne challenged herself to produce an image purely for herself, which is where her unique artistic style began to immerge.  One of the first of these images became iconic – twins Rhys and Grant sitting in the cabbages. In fact, on her Instagram @annegeddesofficial, Anne recently featured the twins as they are today. These monthly creative challenges gradually led to the creation of her well-known greeting cards, calendars and 7 coffee table books to date. The calendars are still being produced today and available online.

Her 2 daughters (Stephanie and Kelly) are both now professional photographers in their own genres (Stephanie lives in New York and Kelly in Australia) and Anne jokes that nobody was more surprised than their mother that they chose to be photographers themselves; although growing up in an apartment above her Auckland studio, they obviously absorbed much of the creative environment. In fact, on an early vacation in Fiji when the girls were very young, her youngest, Kelly (at around age 4) was watching a late afternoon thunderstorm as lightning lit up the sky. She peered up and observed ‘God must be taking photos!’

Anne’s work has been published in 84 different countries and in 24 languages, proving that children are indeed our collective universal language of innocence and joy.

Now living in New York with husband Kel, Anne has been traveling the world doing private portrait commissions, which are also available to prospective clients here in Manhattan. She has clients with children she has photographed every year from when they were newborns, work which brings both her and the families involved great joy.

This is a unique opportunity to have your own baby be captured in an ‘Anne Geddes’ exclusive image.  As we met, she and her team had recently returned from a private portrait shoot in Dubai and I was surprised to hear how much planning and preparation goes into every shoot.  Anne explained that the Dubai shoot for instance involved many weeks of creative planning and preparation before she and her team arrived there. ‘It’s crucial that everything is in place before the baby is even at the studio’.  Once a baby is there, everything needs to revolve around them.  Of course, these private commissions also include family images.

Over the years, Anne has constantly been asked about her process … what it’s like in the studio when she’s photographing for instance. She is announcing a series of unique workshops here in Manhattan (the first being Saturday May 18th, 2024) and inviting both photographers and those who are simply fans of her work, to be part of an intimate group of 15 people spending that day with her while she creates new work. There will be babies on set and an opportunity for those attending to be a part of the day, asking questions, enjoying lunch together and hearing stories from Anne about many of the images she’s created over her nearly 40-year career – and there are lots of stories!

Remember, these workshops are not just exclusively for photographers, but also longtime fans of her work who would love to see her creative process while she makes entirely new images. It’s your chance to share in the magic and could even be a lovely surprise gift for someone special in your life.  Go to for more workshop information.

For exclusive private portrait enquiries,  please contact Anne’s agent Ann Lawlor – +19173044773

It’s not about the camera, it’s about the subject - got to be fast to see that moment.