Would you like to take better photographs of your kids…even with your phone?
Yup, you heard me right, no expensive, zoom lensed, giant flash wielding camera required.
Just you, your phone and your little people.
Here are a few ickle tips to help you go from kind of pants to a lot less pants!
1. Light up, light up.
The first thing a photographer looks for is ‘good light’. What on earth is that? Basically we look for light to fall evenly on the face so there are no harsh shadows. Shadows are not flattering.
We also don’t want super bright light either. Your little person will just squint and that’s no good. We want to see their eyes (it’s where all the magic is hiding!).
Outside on a cloudy day will give you nice even light, just like the photo above. Cloudy days are easy to work with because there tends to be fewer harsh shadows and no squint inducing sun.
Or try popping your child close to a window and have them look out. Just make sure there are no direct, harsh sunrays coming in the window.
2. How low can you go?
I will happily bet that a lot of your images are taken when you are standing up pointing your phone at your child from an above angle. But a great way to get a cracking shot of your little is to get down to their level. I’m talking creaky knees and soggy grass stained jeans.
You will honestly be so surprised at how much better an image is if you just kneel down so that you are pointing the camera square on to their face. I am regularly in the chin on the deck position. Your little people have their own little world down there. It’s nice to join them in it now and again.
3. Shiny, happy, people!
How do you get real smiles? Not the say cheese, grimace thing they do because that doesn’t capture the real them at all.
The big secret...you play with them. I never ask my kids to take a picture, I always start with, ‘Let’s play a game!’ Here are a few of my go to tricks.
Peekaboo - Sometimes I’ll ask them to hide and then jump out to give me a fright. When I pretend to get a shock I get a real smile and a giggle.
Tickles - Tickle, pause, pretend the tickle monster is coming for more and when they giggle in anticipation, snap snap snap and do it all again!
Or have your other half get behind them and tickle them - works just as well if not better!
Position yourself and get ready - When we’re out and about I’ll often look for somewhere that will frame up the kids nicely and then we play.
Get them to look for something - I love a profile shot so I’ll often pop the kids at the window (with no direct harsh sun) and ask them to tell me what they see.
Or I will put them somewhere with good light and then ask them to look for something they like, just to keep them still. Can you see the plane? The moon? The sheep? (we live in town with no sheep but we like sheep!). Whatever floats their little boats!
4. Everybody be cool!
Kids feed off you. If you’re getting stressed, they will sense it. No good photographs are ever taken when the photographer is getting grumpy. I have shamefully been guilty of this on more than one occasion!
Keep calm and take the opportunity to just enjoy playing with your kids. The good stuff will come and just be ready to snap when it does.
This was taken whilst we were nice and chilled and having a big chat about what Harry liked doing at playgroup.
5. Don’t stop me now!
The easiest way to get a good shot? Don’t stop taking them. Keep that shutter pressed down and then sift through to find the gems.
The images below are a good example. There were a whole heap of shots that weren't as good as these ones but you keep snapping and you capture some perfect little moments!
But beware, as soon as you put your phone/camera away, that’s when they'll do something brilliant, so pretend you're done but keep it handy for that last wee opportunity.
And that’s you.
You are all ready to go forth and take dramatically better pictures of your little lovelies!
Have a go and give me a shout to let me know how you get on or if you have any questions then ask away.
And if all this sounds like too much hassle and all you really want is someone else to take the weight off...well then I think I might be able to help with that too!