We are so fortunate where we live to have some beautiful spots so close by that are the perfect backdrops for family sessions. With two lakes surrounding us and endless kilometers of farm and woodland between, there are so many possibilities! Each location brings a different look and opens up new opportunities for activities. I have made a list of my tried-and-true locations for outdoor family sessions
My favourite local spots near Chatham and Sarnia for family photography
Erieau has so many great things to offer: beaches, pathways, the pier and cottages. Not to mention the fish and chips or the woodfire pizzas and craft beer to grab after your session! It is the perfect spot for families to play, and for couples to get cozy.
Nichols Memorial Trail
This one is a bit of a hidden gem in the Wallaceburg area. Many people tell me they have driven by this spot for years and never stopped. It used to be a memorial forest owned by Nichol’s Funeral Home, but it is now owned and maintained by St. Clair Township. The beautiful trail leads back to some pretty rolling hills (as rolling as we can get in Southwestern Ontario!). This location is great during the fall and winter, but can get wet and very buggy if it’s hot and humid weather. The sunsets at this location are also the best!
Wilkesport Greenhill Gardens
Wilkesport Gardens are an absolutely beautiful and relatively new addition to our area. This is a privately funded park that offers a wide variety for any type of session, but it is a favourite of mine for extended family sessions because there is a large amount of space and activities. I will say that because the trees are young, it is best suited for evening sessions because the shade and light filtration is limited during mid day. However, it is a great central location for Chatham-Kent Sarnia Family Photography Session.
Everyone local knows Brander Park. It has a reputation as being the photographer go-to spot, and for good reason. The pond is beautiful and the willows create and awesome backdrop. Don’t mess with a good thing!
C.M. Wilson Conservation Area
This park has some amazing options in it, with the pond and the wooden bridge, multiple outbuildings, and some beautiful wildflowers it makes for a great spot to explore with a large family or small children. I often use this spot for extended families since there is so much space to work with!
Canatara is a gem because it offers so much variety! Located right in Sarnia and on Lake Huron, you get the best of both worlds with green trails, and beachy vibes. This is a beautiful option year round, but also offers some gorgeous colours in the fall, and wicked sunsets in the summer.
So many of us locals live in the rural areas of Chatham-Kent/Lambton, and it is always a pleasure to work with families on their own properties (or their friends/relatives). Having a connection to the location brings another level of personality to your images, and it is always fun to incorporate family heirlooms into sessions. Sessions at your own home or farm allow for a backdrop unlike any one else’s, and you know I love a cozy in-home session
Studio Sisters is a lovely little studio downtown Chatham that offers a warm dry place in the winter months! They always have it decorated beautifully and the neutrals are always the perfect backdrop for any kind of session, be it family or branding!
Other locations I would love to try for your Family Photography Session:
Downtown Wallaceburg, Chatham or Sarnia
There are some really wonderful spots downtown that are hiding in plain sight. Downtown sessions are great for a more urban feel – and are usually close to craft beer (just sayin!). Urban session are a fun way to play with light and lines, and they also offer so many options for things to do. We can even grab a pint at Sons of Kent, Refined Fool or Glasstown Brewery before, during or after your session!
Sarnia Art Gallery
I’ve shot a wedding here, but it would be really fun to explore with a family! It is so bright and fun, and they are so helpful there. Perfect for a rainy afternoon.
I am always up for exploring a new location with you! If you’ve got something in mind, let me know and we can make it happen for your next Chatham-Kent Sarnia family photography session!