Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Photo tips for Shootin' Kiddos.

Saturday was a wild one. I had a photo session with, count em'....5 kiddos. It's obvious, 
kids are harder subjects to shoot. I personally think they are harder to shoot than animals, they're
distracted, they're quick and they get bored fast..on top of all this, not all of them
warm up to strangers quickly. So, here's what I do to make it easier on myself. 

1. Go into it knowing you're going to get something good. There is nothing else in the
world that parents love more than their children, and photos of their children are up there too.
After all is said and done, your client will like your photos because they are of their children.
So relax. 

2. Get down on their level. Literally. When you meet the kids, kneel down and introduce yourself
face to face. It's more disarming. Also, talk to them about things they might like. 
Colors, animals, favorite cartoons, halloween costumes etc. They'll become more trusting
and won't necessarily look at you like just another adult. Don't forget to be silly. 
Also, kneel down to shoot or even consider getting on your belly.

3. Let. Them. Play. You might as well forget about getting them to sit still for a 
traditional portrait. Of course try your hardest to get some "safe" shots, but also 
catch them in action. Also, you can make it a game. Ask them to play patty cake, or 
show you their favorite dance. 

4. While all this playing is fun you still have to maintain control. I do this with prizes. 
Take a quick trip to the Dollar Store and put together a prize bag with bubbles, toy cars, 
water guns, stickers...etc. Put the prizes in a fun bag and start out the session by telling
them they get to pick a prize at the end if they're good listeners. When you
feel you are losing control...gently remind them of the treat they'll get if they are a good listener
DISCLAIMER: Let them pick the prizes in front of their parents and most definitely 
don't let them have candy with out asking the parents first.

5. Remember you don't always have to shoot their faces straight on....or their faces at all.
Catch their bare feet in the grass, or a silhouette shot of the contour of their little cheek. 
Parents love every little part of their kiddos. 

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