main banner

7-Tips-for-getting-the-perfect-shot-of-your-little-ones

7 Tips For Getting The Perfect Shot Of Your Little Ones

Wherever we are. Whatever we do. Whatever happens. We’re always ready to take a picture of the moment to remember it forever.

And when you have children, moments like these happen even more. You’re constantly taking pictures of your little one from the day she was born: Her first smile, her first step, her first visit to the zoo, everything. After some time when you look at the pictures again, it brings back a lot of memories you can treasure forever.

But did you ever wish you had more skills as a photographer? Knew a bit more about getting that perfect picture? Camilla Lee, a family photographer based in Clontarf, Dublin, believes photography has the power to make people feel like they've travelled back in time.

“Sometimes I look at old photos and for a split second they take me back to my big day or even just one little everyday moment that I would have forgotten if it wasn’t for that photograph,” she says.

READ MORE: Dad Captures 'Little Moments' With Daily Photos Of Kids

She recently did a week's 'Instagram take-over' on our Instagram page: Each day she gave our followers a great photography tip, which you can use to get that perfect shot of your little darlings:

Photograph Little Stories

Of course it’s really nice when they give us that big smile looking at our camera, but it’s also amazing to photograph them being themselves, doing whatever they want to do. Observe them and keep shooting, they might do something really funny or cute and you will get a great candid shot!

On this photo, she was sitting on the chair eating her smarties when some of them fell on the floor, she went down to pick them up and started eating them! I found it really cute and funny (it’s one of those things that they do all the time that are not 'right' but make us laugh).

READ MORE: Are We Wrong To Post Family Pictures On Facebook?

These are the kind of moments I’m always looking for in my sessions. And I’m sure it’s going to be a great memory for her in the future, seeing those big chairs just the way she remembers them.

Do you remember how everything in your home used to be so big when you were little?

Make The Most Of Natural Light

Light is one of the most important aspects of a photograph. Did you know that ‘photography’ means ‘writing with light’? ‘Photo’ means ‘light’ and ‘graphy’ means ‘process of writing or recording’.

If you are shooting indoors, open all the curtains to let the sunlight in, try and capture natural light (if you are using your phone, turn off the flash. And if you are using a camera but have no idea how to set it manually try the ‘Auto without flash’ mode).

If you are shooting outdoors on a sunny day, shoot in the shade to avoid dark shadows under the eyes and neck. If it’s a cloudy day, the clouds will diffuse the light for you and the shadows will be much softer and even. Also, the best hours to photograph outdoors are the couple of hours after sunrise and the couple of hours before sunset.

Composition

Thinking about what you want in your photo and taking the time to compose it will definitely make it much more appealing. There is a lot to talk about composition, so I’ll focus on two main aspects that I use every day when composing my images.

Have you ever heard of the rule of thirds? It’s about where you position your subject in the photo, you don’t always have to have your child in the centre. In fact, the rule of thirds suggests that an image will look more balanced and interesting if you position your subject off-centre. If you turn your grid on in your phone or camera, you will see two horizontal and two vertical lines. Try positioning your main subject on one of the four points where the lines meet.

Also, pay attention to what is in your background, avoid having any objects or colours that could distract your eyes from the main subject.

READ MORE: How Can I Keep My Children Safe Online?

Organise Your Photos

I know the lil’ ones keep you really busy, but let’s say once a week (try) go through all the photos you took that week, delete everything that you don’t like or looks pretty much the same and pick your favourite ones. If you have downloaded them to your computers, put them in a folder ‘Best Photos’ or if you photograph with your phone, create an album or simply heart them (if you have an iPhone, not sure if you can do that on Android…).

Nowadays we take so many photos, sometimes we take amazing photos and one month later we don’t even remember them. So keep your best photos organised!

One day when you want to find them, it’s gonna be much easier than looking through thousands of photos.

Print Your Favourite Photos

It’s the best way to keep them.

You know that folder of favourite photos I mentioned earlier? Do, maybe every two months, print them and start your collection of family memories (get a little box and start filling it with them).

In 15 years when your kids want to see their photos, or maybe in 30 years when you want to show them to your grandkids, the computers then might not be able to read your USB or you may not remember your cloud log-in and password. Think about when your kids want to show their childhood photos to their grandkids.

The prints will always be there, in your little box. Easy for them to find and keep your memories alive.

The other day my mother-in-law showed me a photo of my husband taking a sink bath and that melted my heart. Think about the joy your photos can bring to your family in the next generations.

READ MORE: Can I Stop Family Sharing Pictures Of My Kids Online?

Editing Your Photos

The post-production is a big part of a photographer’s life. Every single photo I deliver to a client goes through an editing process. Personally, I like to keep my photos very similar to what the scenes look in reality, but everybody has their own taste and there are a lot of possibilities when you are editing a photo, I’ll talk about some basic ones.

Crop/recompose/straighten: The first thing I do is to crop the photo. Sometimes just a little bit, sometimes I completely change the composition, like cropping a horizontal photo to vertical. Every photo is different and I like to try different options.

Exposure: Then I brighten or darken the photo a bit.

Contrast: Contrast always makes the photo pop up a little bit, but don’t go too crazy. Make sure the transition of colours is smooth and that there are no parts of the photo completely black or completely white (I hope that made sense).

Sharpness: If your photo is out of focus, it won’t really fix it. But if it is in focus, then it’s going to make it even sharper and amazing.

Here are some apps to play with:

  • VSCO – My favourite thing about VSCO is that I can edit photos in raw and save them in high resolution (without losing quality).
  • Snapseed – Lots of amazing tools and my favourite is ‘healing’ that I use to clean some unwanted stains or spots in the photo.
  • Lightroom – It’s great as well, but to be honest, I hardly use it.
  • I also love the Instagram editing tools and sometimes I just edit the photo right before posting it.

Try Some Photography Projects

Starting a photography project will inspire you to photograph more often and will definitely help you improve your photography skills.

Here are some ideas:

  1. Recreate old photos – Pick your favourite family photos from when you were a child (it can be photos of you by yourself, you and your mum, dad, all family together) and recreate them with your children.
  2. Repeat a photo – Take a photo today (could be any photo, them eating, sitting on the sofa, on their bike, standing by the wall holding their favourite toy at the moment…) and repeat this photo every month. It’s a nice way to keep track of how much they have grown and changed.
  3. 10 on 10 – Every month on the 10th take 10 photos during the whole day showing a bit of your routine (or pick any day. It can be 5 on 5 or 8 on 8). In a year you will see how much your daily life has changed.

Camilla recently started her own project 'Breastfeeding An Act Of Love'. "The idea was to show beautiful photos of mothers breastfeeding their babies to encourage other mothers who might be having difficulties or maybe just need more information about all the benefits," she says. "I wanted to do something to help #NORMALISEBREASTFEEDING." The picture above is one of hers as part of the project. 

READ MORE: Top Ways To Display Your Kid's Art Work

And the last tip Camilla has for mums: BE IN THE PHOTOS.

Maybe you don’t like to be in photos, but think about how much your baby will love to see you in the photos in 30 years. Use your camera timer, get dad to take them, take selfies, but BE in the photos.

Camilla Lee is originally from Brazil and started photographing while in Fashion Design College. Over the last 10 years she has photographed fashion shows, plays, events, portraits, travelled the world as a Disney Cruise Line Photographer and also taught photography at Senac São Paulo in Brazil.

For more information, follow her on Instagram or go to her website. Also follow eumom on Instagram.


About the Author

eumom team 

Comments

Please login to leave a comment.