Do you struggle to get good shots of your wriggly little ones in your photos? Follow these tips to improve your chances of a decent frame worthy shot.
1. Don't say Cheese
In my experience as soon as you mention that you want to take a photograph the children will start to play up. Once they know it is your intention to have them sit still and smile at a camera they will almost always do the total opposite.
Take your camera out early and adjust your settings so the camera is good to go, no child likes to sit still while their parents are faffing with all the buttons. Set up so you are primed and ready, only then call your subjects in for the shot, this reduces that amount of waiting time and avoids too many grumpy faces. Other words to try saying are "Monkey" "Puppy" and "Froggy", these words produce a more natural looking smile.
2. Clear Up
It's so annoying when you get a great shot only to wish the background was all blurry so you couldn't see all the nonsense behind you subject?
Choose a spot that is not too cluttered or move away any clutter that can distract from your subjects, open spaces outdoors really are the best for this but if you do have to take a shot inside move away elements of the shot that are unnecessary, like bags on the floor, cups on a table, and things on a wall behind.
3. Snuggle Up
As much as you may want an image of all your children looking directly into the lense its unlikely to happen on purpose. So why not settle for a loving cuddly shot. Call the children for a cuddle and grab that image instead. There is something so wonderful and genuine about an image showing the love between a parent and child.
Ask your children for a hug or perhaps a game of Chinese whispers, photograph that unique connection and love rather than a cheesy smile. The more candid the image, the better.
4. Give Them a Go
If you are really struggling offer them a go. Tell them you will take it in turns to take a shot but when its your turn they need to sit still. Let them take a shot of you (all be it supervised if you are using expensive gear) and let them make their own lovely pictures. Children can often be more interested in the photos if they have had a hand in producing them.
5. Be Quick
You have to work fast with little ones especially, they have a pretty short attention span so don't drag it out. If you find it takes too long, put the camera down and wait a bit for every one to get into a good place.
Lastly if all else fails crack out the bribery. It is sometimes necessary to reward the sitting still. Chocolate is my favourite tool.
I hope these tips help you the next time you want to capture some photos of your little ones. Do you have any tips of your own you would like to share? Let me know and leave a comment below!