Kids grow up so fast, we don’t want to miss a thing! The great thing about digital cameras is that we don’t have to miss anything anymore. You can snap away for hours, delete the ones you don’t want, and keep or print the ones you do want.
We all want to take the best possible photos of our kids. But there are always a few problems we run into, like, oh, finding the camera in the first place, getting the kids to sit still for once, and finding a good spot to take the photos when every room in your house is a mess. Don’t worry, I can help you!
Here are a few of my best tips to make the most out of the photos you take at home this summer:
1. Leave your camera out! Leave it on the kitchen counter or the dining room table. Leave it somewhere your family spends a lot of time. Your two year old is not going to “hold that pose” while you go searching for your camera. Leaving it out will force you to take more photos. Go ahead, drive everyone crazy – you won’t regret taking too many 🙂
1 b). Take you camera with you. I have a little cheapy camera that I throw in my purse when we go out. And I always have my cell phone. Click, click, click… Don’t worry about taking a bad photo, your job is to capture the memories.
2. Find the light. You know the rooms in your house that get the best light…go there! One of the best naturally lit rooms in our house is the bathroom and I often pile everyone in there to take their photo! Position them right and no one has to know you’re in the bathroom (or your bedroom with the unmade bed and two weeks worth of dirty laundry on the floor…)
3. Let them be silly. Don’t try to get the perfect pic, it just won’t happen. Kids have an attention span of about 2 seconds and they never listen to their parents. Take what you can get. Don’t ask them to smile, you’ll get this:
Try to get them to laugh; it makes for a more natural “smiling” look. And don’t think they have to be showing their entire face, or looking right at the camera either. Some of my favorite photos are the ones where no one is looking at me, or I can only see their eyes.
4. Focus on the eyes. Always. If you can adjust your auto-focus to pinpoint one particular spot, do it. And pinpoint those eyes. Humans are natural drawn to each other’s eyes. Same for portraits – it’s all about the eyes.
5. Use your flash inside. What? Flash? Inside?? Yup! But only if you can point it upwards. Bounce the light off the ceiling (or sideways off the wall) for a natural, well lit look indoors when there just isn’t enough natural light. I’m one of the few photographers who prefer working with flash over natural light. Just don’t point it right at your subject, unless you’re going for the “deer in the headlights look.”
That’s it! Easy huh? Keep in mind that children under the age of 3 are the HARDEST subjects (age 1-2 being the most difficult – they just keep running away!). Just keep on clicking though, don’t be discouraged. Persistance pays off and you will get some cute photos – I promise! Snap away when they’re running away. Capture their hands, feet, and eyelashes…
PS. Back up your photos. I know you have hundreds, thousands, of photos on your hard drive right now. Don’t be stupid, back them up. Seriously….