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May 7, 2012 / Nina Duncan

Tips for Photographing Kids

GO TO THEIR EYE LEVEL

If you’ve ever seen me photograph children, I spend a lot of time lying on my tummy or crawling around on the floor with them. Sometimes the only difference between a regular throwaway snap and a frame worthy image is just perspective! As a general rule get your camera down to your subjects eye level, they don’t have to look into the camera, just at their eye level will create a more personal shot. NB. With adults go just slightly above their eye level (never from below!) to make a much more flattering shot of anyone aware of puppy fat or double chins!

LET KIDS HAVE FUN

I’ve never understood people who dress their kids up to pose them in a random scenario like sat on a deckchair chair on fake grass in a studio or against a plain white background! Besides looking a little weird, it is an unnatural environment for the child.  If you want to ‘stage’ some shots for a certain occasion then I suggest you create a situation where the children can have some fun! Splashing in puddles in the park or in the bath or sea, throwing leaves around, getting messy with finger paints! I bet you don’t have to ask more than once to get a child to do that, where as stand still and smile for mummy is slightly harder! Which leads me on to my final and BIGGEST tip for parents…

PLEASE DON’T SAY CHEESE!

My advice to parents is start taking pictures of kids from the moment they are born so a) they are used to it and don’t shy away from the camera and b) you get to document their childhood – something in years to come you will treasure. Lets face it, technology has moved on so much that most gadgets nowadays have some image capturing function so more and more pictures are being taken… however we still haven’t moved on in one way… Parents still say to kids “say cheese!!!!” It’s the single worse thing in my opinion you can do… as it begins forever more a pre-conditioned ‘cheesey’ smile every time a camera appears. Instead if you want to capture you child smiling use silly expressions, jump up and down, make a fool of yourself to capture a genuine laugh or smile and get rid of that frozen fake “camera” smile!

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