Photography & Digital Arts


Photographing Children: How to Get the Best Photos With Simple Photography Techniques

If you have children, photography is probably one of your new hobbies, like it or not. Everyone loves having pictures of their kids, but photographing children is an art that must be learned if you want good photographs worth saving.

Family Photographs

With digital cameras getting more affordable and user friendly every year, photography is easier than ever for the amateur. Chronicling your family's story in photographs can be done – and done well – by anyone.

Start when your children are very young and take lots of photographs. Get them used to the camera clicking at them. They’ll pose more readily and be more natural for your photographs.

Use photographs in the scrapbooks and baby books you keep for your children. Design a photo storage method that works for you and take good care of your photographs.

Techniques for Good Photos

Read the instructions for your camera and follow these simple photography techniques:

  1. Get down to their level. Photos shot from above don’t show the true picture you’re trying to take, and they often look amateurish. You should generally try to take pictures with the camera at the same level as the child’s eyes.
  2. Don’t let people stand behind you, above your head, and make faces to get the child to smile. The child won’t look at the camera or may not know where to look.
  3. Get in close to the child to engage him, then move back as he is still looking at you. Know what your frame is going to be before you start. Leave enough space around the photo to crop if need be. You can always crop out extra space; you can’t add space around a subject in a photo.
  4. Take a variety of shots at different distances. Close-ups, photos that show a child’s eyes nicely, will always be commented on as “nice photographs.” Experiment with framing. Take some shots with only the face, take others that show the head and shoulders, and take some that show the whole body.
  5. Be aware of lighting. Soft lighting is usually best. Make sure you aren’t photographing the child in the shade, with the sun behind him. Even lighting will make it easier to get a good photograph. The best way to ensure that photographs have good exposure is to make sure you take the photos in nice, well lit conditions.

Generally, direct sunlight isn’t good, but just slightly overcast or filtered sunshine is. If the lighting is good and bright, then you can safely set your camera to automatic exposure and forget about it, unless there is some effect you’re trying to achieve.

  1. Keep your camera handy. It’s much easier to photograph a child when he's having fun and in the mood to laugh and smile. Forced, posed and staged photos are not nearly as natural.

Take a camera with you whenever you leave the house. Keep a small camera in your purse or in the glove box of your car, or slip one in your pocket before you leave the house. Forgetting your camera is always a huge disappointment.

  1. Take lots of pictures. Don’t worry about making every picture the perfect photograph. Digital pictures cost you nothing. Keep shooting until you have what you want or the child grows restless.

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