Thursday, June 03, 2010

Just so you know...

our son is not perfect...despite those cute, smiling pictures that we post.

The pictures from the previous post were in the middle of the biggest fit that Eli has ever thrown. Seriously.
We were out of town, our schedule was out of whack, he didn't get a good nap...etc. All the fun that goes along with veering away from our regularly scheduled programming.

We take literally hundreds of pictures at a time of this little guy.
If we get one that we don't delete out of ten we are thrilled...thrilled.
Thank the Lord for digital.

Here are a few tips for taking pictures of your kiddo, for what it is worth from two young parents with an interest in photography.

1. We both feel like the best investment parents can make is in a good camera.
However, we have all taken phenomenal pictures from a crummy point and shoot! I, for one, have taken some pretty poor pictures with a big nice camera. The key is knowing how to use the camera you have! Read the manual. Once you know the in's and out's of your camera, the best way to set up your photos, and work with the environment, then think about if you are needing a better camera to facilitate your skills. Also, look into an editing program. We are Photoshop fanatics, but we wouldn't have been able to afford it if we hadn't bought the student version while we were in look into other programs that can help you enhance your photos post process. Do research online and critiques of the program too before you buy!

2. Know the lighting. Light can make or break a photo. If the sun is glaring down, casting huge shadows try to find some shade. Know what is in the one likes a picture with a tree sprouting out of their head! You can do wonders to pictures in Photoshop, but it is a long learning process if you don't know what you are doing. Worse case scenario, turn on your camera's fill flash to help even out the shadows...we don't like to use a flash if we don't have to...ever.

3. Be patient. A lot of the time our picture time with Eli takes this progression. Eli runs away (see above). We run, case him down and bring him back or move along with him (see below). Like I said, we take tons and tons of pictures.

We usually can find something to set Eli on...that gives us a few seconds to snap a few photos before he moves. Know also that they don't have to be looking at you all the time for a great picture. We have many of Eli not looking at us at all that we adore.
Also, look for natural props. Sometime photographers will bring in some sort of props, but (to me) a lot of the time it just looks cheesy. Whatever your taste. Distraction can be key at times, so weigh your options.

Follow your kiddo around. Eli did this totally on his own, we let him, and it is a cute picture. Dance, sing, make funny noises- whatever you have to do to get a little crack of a smile.
You know your kiddo best- you know what they find hilarious.

4. DO NOT GET UPSET. (I happen to think this is the most important one.) If you get flustered by the behavior of your child/children it will only make matters worse. Those little boogers can pick up on your attitude before you do sometimes!
We really agree that Eli is our best & favorite subject. Why you ask? Because there are no time restraints on our pictures with him. If he is tired or grumpy, we test the water, take a few shots to see if we can make him smile. If not, we go home. It is important to know when to walk away.

So, there you have it. From one set of parents to another, you know our tricks and trades of taking great kiddo pictures.

Does anyone else have any helpful hints to add?


elise geter said...

Awesome advice! I wanted to add...
Back-up, back-up, back-up!!! My hard drive crashed when Apsen was 3 months was recovered through a special process that cost us $1100.00. To have her newborn pictures it was worth it, but we thought they were gone forever. Then I lost all of my awesome phone pictures when my phone was stolen two months ago. Now days there are alot more ways to lose all your photos!
I almost miss the days of dropping off film at walmart and having shoe boxes of prints in the closet.