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Photographing kids and families

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When it comes to photography, children represent some of the most rewarding and the most challenging subjects to capture. Kids are cute and charismatic, and displaying pictures of your own kids makes for great wall art. However, getting that perfect portrait isn’t always easy. Sibling fights, tears, and even things like bright sunshine or unexpected weather can be your enemies during a photo session with kids.

Fortunately, you can make the experience easier for everyone. Here are few tips to make photo sessions go a little more smoothly.

Let Kids be Kids:

Instead of trying for a posed photo, let your children do what they love to do and catch them in action. Does your son love trains? Hand him a toy train and capture the look on his face when he sees it. If your little girl loves climbing trees, let her climb and snap a shot of her in her natural element. You won’t be fighting for smiles because your kids will already be happy, and the shots will come out looking natural instead of stiff and posed.

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Keep the Group Shots to a Minimum:

Unless your kids play really well together, try taking most pictures individually instead of as a group. This will save you the hassle of breaking up fights and making sure everyone can be seen, and your little ones may even enjoy the process because they will be getting a lot of one-on-one attention. If you must have a group shot, have older kids hold the younger ones and have an assistant stand behind you acting silly to grab everyone’s attention and get all the kids smiling.

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Choose Clothes Wisely:

Nobody likes itchy dresses or tight suit jackets. Choose clothes that are cute, but still comfortable for your kids to wear. Many boutiques sell adorable outfits that are made with comfortable cotton and are perfect for pictures. By dressing your children comfortably, you will hear much less complaining, and let’s face it: Your kids don’t really need the fancy clothes to look cute anyway.

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Location, Location, Location:

Pick a pretty place to take pictures, but make sure your kids are comfortable in the location. Outside venues tend to work best for this, as little ones can run and make noise, and nature has some truly beautiful backdrops to offer. Try a local park, an orchard, a zoo, or even your own backyard if you have one. Spring and Fall lend themselves well to photography, but all seasons are beautiful in their own right, so don’t hesitate to snap a summer shot or hold a winter session.

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Time Of Day:

The best time of day to shoot outdoor photos is during what’s known as the “golden hour” — the hour just before sunset on any given day. During this time, the sun is low in the sky and produces a warm, flattering light perfect for photography. Squinty eyes and shadows are less likely during this time, making the session a more pleasant experience for all involved. Another ideal time for early birds is the hour just before sunrise. If you can manage to get your subject up and ready by that time, you will have about sixty minutes to get that perfect shot.

Once you have those perfect shots you can turn them into photo canvas prints that will last a lifetime.

 

Image credits: Alison Burrell | Joshua Clay | Visual Hunt | Luke Michael | Alexander Shustov