Did you spend hours debating outfits and fixing your kid’s crazy cowlick for this?!
Wonder how your friend’s children have such great smiles all over your social media feed?
While professional photos are treasured heirlooms for your children and grandchildren, the day-to-day moments are the ones your children will look back on to tell the story of their childhood. And be sure you get in those photos, too!
For the everyday moments you want to capture, here are a few simple photography secrets:
All good photographers and hobbyist photographers know it’s all about the light. If you can’t seem to get non-blurry images of your kids, fix your light!
Getting nice lighting outdoors is relatively simple. Avoid harsh sun by seeking shade, and shoot when the sun is lower in the sky. I mostly shoot during the Golden Hour – the hour after the sun rises and the hour before it sets. When you can’t get outside, you can still take great pictures.
The first thing I do when I enter a room to take photos is turn off the lights. From fluorescent to can lights to incandescent bulbs, artificial lighting often causes ugly color casts and weird lighting patterns. Instead, move your child toward a window, preferably with sheer curtains to soften the light. You want the light to hit your child’s face and either be to your side or behind you.
This might be common sense, but make sure your baby has been fed and had a nap. Cranky babies make cranky mommies and not so great photos. To snag your little one’s attention make all the funny faces and ridiculous noises you need to.
My secret weapon is a harmonica. I can hold it in my mouth and shoot at the same time. Music gets their attention and most times they crack a smile.
Let It Go
You can’t dictate what mood your kiddo will be in nor what expressions he will give. If your baby is not having it, try again another time. Or, document those snotty, pouty faces. It is part of his childhood, and the person he is at that moment. Those moments are treasures, too!
Toddlers tend to be the hardest to shoot because they don’t care that you’re trying to take their picture and love to run away. Make it a game. Capture those smiles during a game of chase. This is easiest outside because you’re less likely to get blurry photos.
Lastly, have fun. If you aren’t enjoying the session, neither is your little one. Capturing those moments is not as important as living those moments. Savor the time while they’re little.