We all have a friend or two who always captures the most poignant moments with his children on camera. Or the biggest smiles. The funniest reaction shots. How do they do it? Some people are naturally good at interacting with kids through the lens, but if you’re not one of those people, read on for our five tips for non-expert parent photographers!
1. Focus on the face. It’s rare to get a shot of a child sitting perfectly still, and so often, we lose out on great moments because we’re waiting for our kids to settle down and stop moving. Forget about perfection and focus your camera on your child’s face. Every shot you get will produce an in-focus shot of his expression, and your picture will look great, despite any moving limbs or blurred background.
2. Get low! Kids are literally at their own level. Stay low and follow their movements. You might get a great shot of hands manipulating legos, little legs exploring the ground, or sweet interactions between siblings and friends.
3. Keep clicking. don’t wait for that perfect shot. Just allow your child to be herself, and click in rapid succession. Digital photography means that there’s no film to waste, so take a hundred pictures of your child opening his birthday gift, and you’re sure to get at least one that’s frame-worthy!
4. Go for the laugh instead of the smile. It’s difficult to get a young child to smile on cue. Go for a laugh instead…it’s easier. Instead of asking him to say “cheese”, ask him to say “bagel” or “french fry”. You may just get a giggle that will make a brighter, more spontaneous shot.
5. Remember the calmer moments. You may not think to take out your camera when your child is reading on the couch, quietly nodding off, or eating a snack in silence after a long day. But taking a candid shot during those moments might give you a more intimate portrait of your little one at rest.
We all want to capture our moments with our children at their most magical, and it doesn’t take a professional photographer to do so. Remember that photographing kids is completely different from taking shots of adults, and your picture-taking skills will improve enormously!