We all know how quickly kids grow. One minute you hold their small hand on the first day of school and the next they are asking for the keys to your car …
So at the end of the day, the only thing we have left to treasure these little moments by, are our photos. In today’s world of digital photography it is easier than ever to get better results even if you are not a professional. So, bring your camera, and try applying these simple guidelines:
1. Light is the essence of any good photo. When taking pictures indoors, look for a spot with natural light coming in, like a window or glass door. When outdoors, make sure there is no direct sun on the child, which can cause harshly shaded or “burned” areas. Whatever you do… avoid using a direct flash. That creates a flat and evenly toned picture.
2. As adults we tend to see the world from a higher vantage point than our children. When taking a picture from above we make the child look much smaller. Try to take pictures at “eye level”, or while you are on the floor. This changes our perspective and helps you see his world through his eyes.
3. The background is as important as your subject. Prefer to take pictures over a simple color background and not a loud chaotic environment. Simple domestic ideas can be a colored wall, carpet, or even curtains. When outdoors use grass, tree logs, or playground slides to create a colorful yet cleaner look.
4. Staging a child is a matter of personal taste. Given the choice I always prefer to let kids be kids and capture their natural activities while being as unnoticeable as possible. Try to give the child something to do like playing, coloring or interacting with your pet. You will be amazed at how many pictures you will want to take and how simplicity can be elegant.
5. Kids will always be happy to play with you. Photography is a great fun way to be creative and spend time with the kids. Let them enjoy their Halloween costumes, set up a tea party with all their teddy bears or simply enjoy a day in the park. This is a great opportunity to think outside the box when it comes to set up variety, new angles, and paying attention to details.
6. As we know kids are always running. When taking pictures of a moving object we can smear or blur some parts of the picture. If you do not know how to manually change your shutter speed, try to switch your dial from “automatic” to “sports mode”. This will assist you in freezing the picture when dealing with a moving object.
7. Try to tell a story. Sometimes, a small detail, can give our viewer a better understanding of the situation. Put these little details in a nice collage and frame it.
8. Last but not least – patience. It is not easy to take pictures of children, even our own. Be prepared to work with their schedule with food and sleep as well as their mood. Sometimes kids just don’t want to be photographed and it is completely normal. Try again at a better time or try to make the experience less obvious and more active or playful for the child.