At Little Images we spend all of our time – well working time anyway – taking photos of young children and so we’ve learnt a thing or two over the years as to how to get the best photos without it all ending in tears. And we’re not talking about the children being in tears.
Whether you’re taking photos with the latest digital SLR camera or with your phone (and there are advantages to both), here are a few tips to help you get the best shots.
1) Take lots of photos
Kids are always rushing around and can change from being happy to sad – and back again – in an instant. That’s why it’s important to take a lot of photos and continue taking them. You may end up deleting quite a few of them, but it maximises your chances of getting that great shot. Some smartphones (definitely the iPhone) allows you to operate in ‘burst mode’ which automatically takes multiple shots.
2) Lighting is important
If you’re outside, the middle of the day can present challenges – bright sunlight does not help with glare and reflections – if you are, see if you can find a shady spot to take the photos. Dawn and dusk are great times to take photos in natural light – pros and serious amateurs swear by their light meters, and sometimes the best time to take the photos is when it’s a fair bit darker than you think it would need to be.
If you’re shooting inside you need good lighting – sometimes this might need to be artificial.
3) Don’t be too controlling
Too much positioning and retaking shots can wear everybody down. Let the kids do what they want… within reason – and you will likely get some good shots. Sometimes it’s good to just go with the flow.
4) Don’t just shoot from adult height
Get down to their level and take shots with them – you end up seeing what they see in the photos and this can be a great natural look.
And finally – a few things to try not to do…
- Don’t get so caught up in the photography that you end up over controlling or – even – yelling at them. This won’t make anybody look forward to the next time you take photos.
- Don’t be overly concerned about getting that perfect shot – take enough photos in the right light and keep everything light and you will naturally get a few (maybe more) great shots.
PS there are some great free apps for editing your photos once you’ve taken them – on the iPhone Adobe Photoshop Express is a great one.