Getting your child’s photographs taken can be a stressful event for everyone involved. With a little preparation and practice you can take the stress out of the event and turn it into a fun filled affair! Each time we have had a child photographed, the process has become easier and easier and I attribute it to the things I have learned throughout the process. I’ll share with you the tips I have learned to make the photography session run much smoother for our family and children!
The timing of the scheduled photography session is very important. The first few times we had our kids photographed we made an appointment in advance and tried to mold our children’s schedule around it. The benefit to this was that you could prepare your kids and yourself, but the downside was you never knew what the days or hours before the session would entail. After trying this and unsuccessfully keeping the appointment or getting good shots, I decided there must be a better way. This is when I decided that once I started to think about pictures, I prepared the kids and picked outfits out. I was then all ready and when a good day appeared, I called the studio to see if they could squeeze us in that day. Most of the time there were openings, and if not, I would just try on the next good day. This prevented any bumps or bruises appearing on photo day, or any illnesses or colds. I knew how the kids were feeling that day and could tell if it would be a good day to take pictures.
I have also found the morning or early evening hours to be the best time to photograph the kids. The morning is nice because the kids are fresh, however the morning can be very busy when trying to get to the studio with clean, well-dressed children. This is why I prefer the hours of 4-6pm for pictures. I know this sounds like supper time, and that sounds bad, but I’ll explain later how I get around that obstacle. This time between 4 and 6 pm is great because it follows naptime and the kids are not too tired and ready for bedtime.
I have found that it is always good to feed your kids a heavy snack or light meal before leaving for the photography studio. This means feeding them their favorite foods that you know will agree with their stomach! Never try a new food the day of pictures. If you have a nursing infant, nurse them before you leave, and be prepared to nurse them before or during the photography session. The photographers schedule extra time for infants to allow for feeding breaks. Even if you are trying to follow a feeding schedule, a photography session is one exception you need to make to get good pictures.
On other great tip is to hold practice sessions in your home. Try to not do it the day or two before pictures, but a little ahead of time. Then allow your children to forget temporarily about it so that on picture day the excitement and familiarity will both be there. Practice fun poses and even see if you find one that you want to repeat at the studio. Photographers love taking pictures of kids who love to have their picture taken!
The last tip I have is to try to dress the kids in comfort. We as parents want to pick out our favorite outfits or dresses for the kids to wear, but it may be more beneficial to dress the kids casually and comfortably. Limit outfit changes because most kids do not like getting dressed and undressed. Start the session off with your favorite outfit, to ensure a good shot with it on. If you feel that you must dress your child in that frilly dress from Grandma, allow your child to wear it for a day to become acquainted with it.
Next time pictures are due for your kids try some of these tips and see how well the photography session goes. Of course you can never guarantee happy kids at the studio, but a little preparation goes a long way! Your kids and the photographer will appreciate it!