NIKKI OLIVIER

Where it all began | Sunshine Coast Portrait Photographer and Educator

 

"To practice any art, no matter how well or badly is a way to make your soul grow. So do it." Kurt Vonnegut

Hi, I’m Nikki, as some of you already know, I am a mom of 2 gorgeous children, wife to an amazing man and my very best friend in the world, and I’m an immigrant!  I remember having just immigrated to Australia in 2007. I moved to a small town in New South Wales.  Everything was new, I knew no one, I had no friends or family support.  I had a 21-month baby girl and her 3-month-old sister. My husband had a new job and worked very long hours.  This was the year my photography journey began. 

I owned a little point and shoot, that I use excessively, but I wanted portraits of my girls to remember how old they were when our new lives began in Australia.  I ended up getting one of those in the mall shoots done, not having any idea how much it would cost!!  How expensive could it be!  I had $400 at the time as my budget! And it was going to be part of my Christmas present!  The day arrived to collect the images and all my $400 bought me was 6 prints!!!  That was the day – my life changed and I decided right there and then that I would learn how to capture my own beautiful images of my children!!! I had to remember them, I had to capture everything they said or did!!  As a mother, this drive to remember our children is a maternal instinct, we just have to!  I knew this was my opportunity to finally get my hands on a DSLR. I asked my husband, buy me a camera for Christmas! I was gifted with an entry level DSLR camera with kit lenses -  and I have never stopped pushing myself, learning and experimenting since then!

That’s how and when my photography journey all began.  I spent hours and days exploring, learning, trying new techniques and finding and developing my own style! You can only truly find your own style when you shoot manual!!! And my photography journey took off from there.

Today I know that I am a portrait photographer, I love people’s faces, their eyes especially, and I love photographing still moments, soulful moments, meaningful moments, this is what I love to do.  As my children have grown up, I am so grateful for my photography journey as it has fuelled my creative passion and desires!  Our children grow up so quickly and nothing we do will slow that down. All we can do is enjoy our time with them, and capture those moments we don’t want to forget. The big ones, like birth- days and holidays, are easy since everyone has their cameras out, but it’s the in-between moments that really capture who our children are. A quiet moment of them reading in a corner, their favorite stuffed animal, or the way they light up when they giggle. These are the moments you want to capture.

Because of my own journey, I really want to inspire and share what I have learned over the years.  I have decided to create a workshop specifically for mom called Capture life beautifully.  I hope to launch this very soon, as I am still developing the training material for it!

Here are some images of my very first official photo shoot of my girls!!! I was so proud of them!! I even had 4 printed on canvases - and they still are in my home!!  They hold a special memory and place in my heart.  These were taking in the children's playroom using simple front window lighting - To this day I love this lighting for families and children.  It's simple and always pretty!!!  Since then, I my posing and styling has improved!!!  But I still love it!!!



Newlife Maternity session | Sunshine Coast Portrait Photographer

 

"There is no better feeling than the movement of life inside of you."

I love meeting new clients through a referral, they are more often than not exactly the people you love to work with.  I knew when I met Emily, she would be a wonderful person to photograph.  Her beautiful soft nature and personality was infectious.  We chose to capture her maternity images at her home, and in the garden.  Then a short distance away we were at the beach to complete the afternoon.  She was 35 weeks and looked amazing!

There is something magical about beginning a family together.  This couple will be wonderful parents, their love to each other is tangible, and I feel blessed that they were able to cross my path.

Hair and makeup were arranged by Emily, Hair by @jodycallanhair and makeup by @prueconway The girls did an incredible job!

Here are some images from our session together.... images of baby will be following very soon...



Follow your heart - do what you love | Sunshine Coast Portrait Photographer

Follow your heart – do what you love.

“Life changes so fast.”

With age, comes wisdom, yes, and I still have so much to learn! And teach! But also the realization that things are impermanent. I’ve spent the past months grappling with this idea or more specifically, why do I do what I do, and what I want out of it!  How can I serve others and serve myself on this journey of life and creativity!

This question led me to dig a little deeper and question not only my role, but also the role of creativity and art in my life. Why do I make the choices I make? How can I make an impact? What is the role of art and photography in a world that moves so quickly? And then I found myself asking myself this question: Why is photography so important to me?

And so I’ve thought about it allot and here’s what I’ve come up with:

  • Photography is important because it slows down the pace of life and freezes time, it creates a legacy. It is therapy for the soul, it has helped me personally deal with many childhood issues and belonging.  Photography is a mirror of my inner self.

  • Photography is important because it tells a story. YOUR story. MY story. or OUR story.

  • Photography is important because it helps us find the beauty in our everyday lives, the beauty in the over-looked and under-appreciated, the beauty in little things, from the curls of hair, crinkled squishy faces to the wrinkles and sags and gray hairs of the ones we love, the beauty that reflects ourselves.

  • Photography is important because it holds a mirror and reflects a part of ourselves, sometimes we wish to share and other times of what is deeply personal.

  • Photography is important because it helps us remember our loved ones, honor them and cherish them.

I couldn’t be more proud to call myself a photographer. I absolutely love my job and am so privileged to have been able to document precious moments between some pretty incredible people. How cool is it that my job is to find beauty and capture a part of your soul that makes you sing? Maybe that’s what I’ll tell people the next time they ask me what I do for a living. From the love of your life to the precious child in your arms, dancing in the light or singing in the rain....these are the things that reflect our innermost being!

"I’m a beauty finder, I capture a reflection that feeds your soul today, tomorrow or forever more!."

I’ve shared the reasons why I love photography and why I think it’s important. Now, I’d love to know why it’s important to you. What makes you stare at one photo longer than another? What speaks to you? What catches your eye, catches your breath, or maybe more importantly, what catches your heart? I'm beginning a slice of life feed every Tuesday - where I will share something personal and a little slice of my own life!



Little boys love fishing | family story | Sunshine Coast Family photographer

One of my favorite things to do is to capture family memories by telling a story.  Finding that one little thing that a child or family love to do together and focusing the session around that subject.  When my children were little, this was how I loved to photograph them.  

My little nephew from Brisbane was no different!  Seeing a little boy having fun, getting wet and exploring in nature was just too cute for words!  Little Adam who is only 2, has the most amazing nature he is strong willed and the funniest mannerisms!!  My heart smiles when I see him, and he has a special place in my heart!  

We spent a few hours at Buderim Falls along the stream...for our session.  We live in the most amazing part of the world, the forests one day, and the beach the next!  Here are images from our session together. Enjoy!

As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen.  Winne the Pooh

Newlife Family session | Bundaburg | Sunshine Coast Photographer

I was lucky enough to travel to Bundaburg to photograph a special family.  A family full of love and kindness, who made me feel so at home and at ease in their home and environment.  We were able to capture, the regular newborn images (when the older children were at school), but we had a stunning location to visit in the evening to capture some magical family images with all the children together.....scroll down further to see the outdoor session.

 

The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other's life.  - Richard Bach