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How to photograph children & newborn: tips for success

Newborn & baby photography is very popular for a rather apparent reason. Every mother and father at some point wishes to capture those fleeting moments when their baby is still so incredibly little and defenseless. We all know how quickly children grow up. The chance to save the precious memories is to take professional photos of your baby.

General advice on children photography

Some people consider children photography to be the hardest type. There are, on the other hand, those who think it’s the easiest: in most cases you don’t even need to have a studio, to make up poses or to choose the clothes! But the truth lies, as usual, somewhere in between. The key challenge is to chase the cute things kids do and take a photo!

Highlighting children’s unique features is a significant part of photographer’s jobImage© Fotolia

Highlighting children’s unique features is a significant part of photographer’s job
Image© Fotolia

Here are some other tips on how to succeed in baby photoshooting.

Make sure your models feel comfortable. You don’t want to get the child tired or upset, so make sure that your little girl or boy is not hungry or sleepy and feels good (after a feeding or a nap is the best time).

Let it be natural. Create the situation and watch! Don’t forget to make photos, though. Plan ahead but don’t forget about the power of spontaneous.

Use props. Engage all kinds of requisite to add funny or cute details to the child’s actions. For instance, you can depict kids pretending to be adults with the help of big shoes, hats, etc.

Entertain. Any child wants first of all to have fun. So turn your photoshooting into a play! Let them see what you’ve got in the viewfinder. Make friends with your models, ask friendly questions, engage in their game. Make kids laugh or make faces; this will help them relax and behave naturally.

Don’t be picky. Capture not just happy expressions; be brave enough to take photos of a crying or perplexed baby. These are the moments that are going to be the most precious over the years.

Probably your kid will become a celebrity, and the glossy magazines will be excited to get his childhood photo. Think about it beforehand and order professional service! Don’t forget to protect the images.

Technical nuances

  • It might be helpful to spend some money on a fisheye lens. Not only can you capture of what’s going on in wide scope, you would also be able to capture the mood of what it’s like to be a kid — everything around you is slightly enlarged.
  • Take a lot of photos at high speed mode (also called burst mode). This is often frowned upon by many professionals but this is a good way of work when you deal with little kids, whose expressions and poses change in a wink.
  • You’ll need plenty of natural daylight. It’s not a good idea to use flash for it makes most babies blink or even cry. Besides, shooting indoors is not recommended since the photographs made this way may contain too much noise. Though it’s better to get a sharp picture with noise, than a blurry noise-free one!
  • Black-and-white mode is quite appropriate too! It creates the atmosphere of calmness and sense of peace.
  • There should be no distractions in the background. The best option is to choose pastel or creamy colors. Soft fabric or carpet can also help to take a nice cosy shot.
  • Get down to the child’s level. This will help to show the world from his or her point of view. By the way, it also contributes to maintaining the contact.
  • Focus upon children’s eyes and pay attention to such details as pretty little fingers, toes or fine hairs. Macro is a great tool for such kind of job.

Children are so different

Previously we discussed some general tips of how to make cute and nice baby photos. But there’s actually one factor you should always take into account. Consider the age of your young model!

Your little models should feel nice in warm in order to provide such a cute lookImage© Fotolia

Your little models should feel nice in warm in order to provide such a cute look
Image© Fotolia

One-year-olds are quite obedient and trust parents or other adults. Babies over two years and up to three years are really hard to work with: they sometimes are simply uncontrollable. Kids after four years are not so wild and can listen to the photographer almost the same way as adults do.

The newborn is a totally different subject group. Within first two weeks they still curl up in those cute poses you might be lucky to capture. However, to get such an opportunity a happy mother should book a photographer as early as in the second trimester of pregnancy.