Whether you are an experienced photographer or a mom trying to get a cute photo of your toddler, you know how hard it can be to photograph toddlers.
Toddlers have little to no attention spam, are constantly moving, and make it their mission to do the opposite of what you tell them. Even with these challenges, I love to photograph toddlers. Mainly because of the facial expressions and personality that can be captured in each photo. So if you are up for the challenge, here are a few tricks to getting that perfect photograph.
1. Give them something to hold:
This could be a stick, a flower, a prop, or a simple toy that will positively add to the photo. One of my favorites is a favorite stuffed animal or blanket. Not only will this give you precious images and perfect personality shots, but the parents (or you if you are the parent) will love having the memories of this special item.
2. Let them play:
You will get the most natural photos if you encourage play. Have mom, dad, or a sibling play peek a boo from just behind your shoulder. Or let your toddler kick a ball, climb on some rocks, or go down a slide. Enjoy the photo shoot and they will too.
3. Photograph toddlers with other family members:
Holding hands, swinging between Mom and Dad, hanging upside down, hugging, getting kissed, being chased, etc. Remember that relationships shots and interaction will bring out the most authentic faces and allow for the best pictures.
4. Bring a snack along
Providing a snack in between shots will keep your toddler happy and smiling longer. This will give you plenty of time to take great photos. Make sure to ask your clients first if this is okay and what kind of snacks the toddler will respond best to.
5. Take a lot of pictures
I snap hundreds of pictures at each photo shoot. Especially if there are kids involved. This is so I get the expression I am hoping for. It can be difficult to capture a toddlers smile in one or two shots. It often takes several pictures done back to back. Don’t hesitate to snap the image consecutively to ensure at least one great shot.
6. Take short breaks
Take a few different posed shots and then let your toddler(s) play. Don’t stop taking pictures during this time. These will be some of your favorite shots. Don’t wait too long before you do another quick posing session. Going back and forth like this will help engage your toddler and stretch their willingness to participate.
All these tricks should make it easy to get those great candid shots you are hoping for when you photograph toddlers. Try one or all of these tips on your next photo shoot or with your little ones at home.