Today I am going to share five easy tips on how to take more authentic and real photos of your sweet children. As long as you have some sort of camera (even a cell phone!) then you, yes YOU, can take your photos up a notch! My take on photography at home is documenting the everyday life. This includes not only the pretty moments, but the raw, in between moments of real life with kids at home. Our lives are not posed styled portraits, which certainly have their place. Instead of trying to make it seem like real life is perfectly-just-so in your photos, I suggest embracing the nitty gritty so you can remember what life was like at each stage. I have three boys- age 6, 4, and 2 so we have a little bit of craziness always going on here. I love being able to photograph what is important to me in its own beautiful imperfect way.
Photograph While Playing
One of the easiest ways to get natural smiles from your children is to photograph them while they are playing. Thankfully, that gives you tons of opportunities because kids basically play most of the day. You can photograph them as an observer or you can play with them and capture some genuine smiles. Photographing the kiddos while they are playing will also authentically capture their personalities. I do NOT suggest asking them to stop what they are doing and pose for a a photo. They probably won’t go for it if they are young and it will likely be stiff and unnatural. Don’t forget to use the timer and get in the photos with your children!
Photograph the Non-Smiles
Yes, we all like to get the pretty smiles and happy faces in our photos. However, equally beautiful are those photos in which your child is not smiling. Embrace the non-smiling faces and even the cries!
Photograph Without the Face
Similarly to photographing the non-smiles, how about photographs without the face? Especially for little babies and toddlers, those precious other body parts are perfect for photographing: brand new hands, chubby hands, small feet, dirty legs, curly Q hair, pouty lips. You can also photograph them from behind and you can see what they are looking at in the photo. If the kids aren’t cooperating with their face, try a different angle and see what you can get.
Photograph Everyday Occurrences
If I had to guess, your kids are ‘in a phase’ of something. Or there is something they would love to do all day long if given the chance. Right now my youngest son is in a phase where he HAS to get a drink out of both water fountains when we drop off bigger brother at school. My oldest is in a Star Wars phase and he actually finally embraced drawing because of the movies. My middle child loves to climb on the rocks when we go to the lake and calls it ‘doing experiments’. Photograph that. It will be quick and easy but you will love to reminisce and have funny stories for your children later.
Photograph To-Do List
Lastly, keep a list of things you want to remember and photograph it when you have time. My most recent cross off the list was ‘Matthew’s Freckles’. He used to have 4 freckles in a perfect square across his nose and I noticed he had a couple more pop up. So I photographed that before he got anymore! Getting a shot of his lushes lashes was a bonus.