Toddlers are designed not to sit still, or do what adults want them to. But that doesn’t mean you should give up on capturing some lovely keepsake photos. Here are some top tips to make sure you get those shots without losing your sanity.
- Let The Kid Have Fun
Kids love tottering about and exploring their surrounds. Doing a shoot outdoors will mean they have more to see and be enthralled by. Give them time to get acquainted with their surroundings and take this opportunity to snap some lovely standing or walking shots.
- Make Them Feel Safe
Most children have an object that they keep with them at all times, like a safety blanket or a favourite soft toy. If it helps the child to be less anxious in a new space, there is no harm allowing him or her to hang on to that object during the photoshoot – even if it isn’t the most photogenic thing. A happy child is key to getting those pictures!
- Remember What Makes Them Laugh
Generally, “smile!” and “cheese!” don’t work with children. Instead, try to recall the current words, toys, songs or actions that make them erupt in laughter. It may have nothing to do with photography at all. For instance, imitating a cat’s meow or singing humpty dumpty. This method is sure to get you many photos with bright smiles.
- Keep Them Comfortable
Sometimes the cutest outfits can also be the most uncomfortable ones. If they don’t wish to wear a party hat or a certain pair of shoes, don’t force them, a comfortable child is much easier to photograph. The best is to dress them in simple clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty. Should you wish to buy a new outfit for the photoshoot, it is always a good idea to let the child wear it a few times beforehand and check if any part of the outfit is bothering them. Try to also avoid anything that is too warm, especially in out humid climate.
Every little child we know goes mad for these shiny floating globes that seem to be impossible to catch! Apart from singing, dancing or waving their favourite toy, bubbles are a sure-fire way to direct the gaze of young children and get them laughing and clapping those adorable little hands!
- Keep Them In The Dark
No not literally, but there is no need to tell them that they are about to become the object of a photoshoot. Just let them play and be themselves as the photographer snaps away. Don’t be hung up on poses that you have practised. Let the session flow naturally and it will be a fun experience for everyone.
- Keep Calm And Try Again Later
If your kid is having a ‘off-day’ (hey it happens to grown-ups too) just take a break and bring him or her away from the set for a while before attempting a second try. If it isn’t working, don’t feel bad. Reschedule the shoot and come back to it another day. Chances are, the second time is going to be much better.
- Let Them Climb Into Something
This appeals to the naturally curious nature of children. Sometimes we bring a chair, basket or bucket and allow the child to climb in (of course with close supervision). That way you get some cute action shots while the child is attempting to climb in, as well as some lovely ones of them sitting still. But do note that this trick will work for a maximum of five minutes before the child will want to get out and start squirming!
- Go Beyond The Face
Of course, your little one’s face needs to be in most of the photos, but don’t forget that cuteness is lurking everywhere else on that little frame! Go up close and take zoomed in shots of little toes and finger, sparkling eyes and curled locks of hair. We especially love these close-up shots when the fingers, toes and faces are smothered in buttercream and cake crumbs!
- Cake Smash
This is a great way to keep your toddler occupied and seated in one place while you try to capture as many photos as humanly possible. This will also ensure you get a good variety of sitting and action shots. The end result of a messy cake smash makes for such fun and rustic photos. If your child appears apprehensive, guide their hands to the cake or give them a taste of the frosting. That should immediately do the trick and they will be squishing the cake in no time!