Photographing children is something that many photographers avoid. While it can be a challenge, here at Pacific Dream Photography, we have a blast! We are going to share a few pointers on how to take the stress out of photographing children. These simple tips will help you achieve natural effortless photos.
1. Be Prepared. Preparing for a session makes all the difference in the world. If an infant or toddler is joining the session, it's important to bring a few toys to keep them engaged. Bubbles are a great way to keep kids occupied during the shoot and will result in giggles and smiles all around. The right lens also plays a huge role when photographing kids. Having the right equipment and settings will result in better photos.
2. Have Patience. Photographing children requires patience and time. Some kids love having their pictures taken, while others may be camera-shy. Just roll with their behavior and don't force anything. Kids will have a great time if you simply hang out with them. Engaging with the child and building their trust will allow them to warm up to the camera! Ask questions, tell jokes, and find out what they are interested in. Be ready to snap pictures at any time. You never know when they might do something unexpected resulting in a fabulous photo!
3. Smiling Is Not What's Most Important. The goal is to allow kids to feel like they are right at home. When kids are comfortable they will share their personality with the camera. Kids possess an array of emotions, quirks, and funny faces. Sometimes asking kids to smile will result in the typical forced "picture day face." Here at Pacific Dream Photography, we like to capture authentic timeless moments. After all, real life moments are the most memorable ones.
4. Get On Equal Ground. This tip might require getting a little dirty (or sandy!), but thats okay! Remember you are working with kids! Standing over them will make them look even smaller, so It's okay to get down on your knees or even on your stomach! Getting down on their level will make you instantly more approachable. Photographing the world from a child's perspective can create stunning images with different angles.
5. Give Them a Sneak Peak! Children love to interact and see whats going on behind the camera. Sharing the images that you are taking can be very beneficial. It allows the child to be a part of the shoot rather than just the subject. Building a bond with the child will help you achieve more ideal results.
6. Get Close. Don't be afraid to get close to your subject. It is important to fill the frame with the child. Capturing their facial expressions will result in extreme cuteness! Choose the right backgrounds, making sure there are no distractions around the subject. Ideally, the background should look blurry and soft.
7. Get The Parents Involved. It's all about the family! During a session, parents are the key to a great shoot. Include the parents in the pictures. This will allow the child to relax and feel comfortable. Not only does this create beautiful images of the child, it creates memories for the whole family.
8. Be Funny. It's okay to be silly during a session. Don't be afraid to make funny faces, dance, make silly noises, and have a great time. Don't worry about getting the perfect image, candid shots are a better option when photographing kids. Most importantly, have a great time! When the photographer is having fun, the child will have a wonderful time.
- Written by Julia P. (Pacific Dream Photography at Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa)