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How to Photograph Children with Cerebral Palsy

Photograph Children With Cerebral PalsyLife can get quite busy and rush by most of the time, which makes it difficult for you to get things done such as portraits of your family. Life can become even busier and more rushed if you have a child with special needs, like cerebral palsy. Many parents find that they do not have much time or energy to get portraits done, and many feel too embarrassed to since their child will not act like other children. The good news is, it is possible to photograph children with special needs and it is something I love to do. Capturing families together is one of the most precious things to me. In this blog, I am going to explore three tips to use when seeking to photograph children with cerebral palsy or any other special need, or indeed any child.

1. Find A Place That Is Easy To Access

One of my clients was worried to get photos of her daughter because the wheelchair prevented them from being able to access some of the more popular photography locations. We sat down and talked about ideas and realised that there was a small, gorgeous park with a stunning grove filled with old trees. We decided to take the photographs there and carried the girl to the bottom of a tree and organised her family around her. It was easy to access, yet also gave the family some gorgeous, unique photographs. This sort of location can be used for infants and toddlers to hold them up and pen them in if they want to run away. There are various areas I know of that will work perfectly.

2. Have Your Child Wear Comfortable Clothing

This is important for children, whether they have special needs or not. Choose clothing that you know your child likes and is comfortable in, because this will help the portrait process go smoothly and give you some of the most gorgeous photographs of you, your child, and family. A relaxed child means the photos will look relaxed and beautiful. If you put them in white, you will be stressed about dirt marks. For children in nappy’s be sure to have a ‘onesie’ under what they wear so it doesn’t show when they play, fall down and as they run around.

3. Talk With The Photographer About Your Child

Before you settle on a photographer, you should always chat with him or her about your child. I love chatting with my clients and learning about them and their family. It also helps to learn more about the children so that I can arrange a perfect portrait session with you and your child. When it comes time to photograph children, it is always important to understand the individual child as each is a gorgeous, unique being. 

It Is Possible To Photograph Children With Cerebral Palsy and other special needs

If you are still hesitant about getting photographs done of your child, I want to encourage you that it is possible to photograph children with cerebral palsy. Give me a call, and we can chat about your child, the photographs you would like, and I can suggest some excellent locations for you to get unique, wonderful family portraits.

Meeting Maddie

I recently had the pleasure of photographing a lovely young lady called Maddie who has cerebral palsy. We met at a local park with her whole family including grandparents. 3 generations. We set Maddie up on some cushions under a big tree and got some wonderful portraits on a sunny afternoon. I learnt a lot about Maddie and discovered she has her own website about her life. I encourage you to go and have a look and support her in her future. You’ll find it at http://maddiesmates.com/

You can support Maddie and have lots of fun by coming along to a Trivia night on August 23rd.

Talk soon,

Margherita :)

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Related Posts:

Photographing Children with Special Needs – Part One

Getting Beautiful Photographs Featuring Children with Cerebral Palsy

Photographing Children With Special Needs: Part Two

Special-Needs-Child-2In part one of my “Photographing Children With Special Needs” blog, I focused on some personal stories of when I have done sessions for families with special needs children. My goal is to show parents it is a wonderful idea to get professional portraiture of their children, with no apologies or feelings of embarrassment. As I have said, I love photographing children with special needs because each child is so unique and inspiring. I learn quite a bit from these children, and they truly enrich my life. Now I am going to take a quick look at the process of photographing children with special needs, aiming to help set your mind at ease about getting portraiture of your children. 

Meeting The Child and Family

One thing that helps me as a photographer, the family, and the child is to meet each other before the session. It is a great chance for a child to meet me and not be surprised when I seemingly show up randomlywith a big camera pointed his or her way. It also is perfect because I am able to talk with families about what the child needs. Does the child need a certain toy or article of clothing? What environment would work best? It is best to take photographs of a child in areas where he or she feels comfortable. This helps to get some of the most gorgeous, natural shots and help the child not worry or get stressed by being in a new environment with a new person. 

Being Gentle And Friendly

Having a friendly demeanour and being gentle with the child is also something that is important. I love to interact with children, as much as they will allow and always respect their wishes. Creating a gentle and friendly environment is great for all children, but especially when it comes to photographing children with special needs. They need to feel as relaxed as possible, which is possible with photographers who are gentle and understanding.

Flexibility Is Quite Important

One of the things I sometimes hear from parents is that they feel embarrassed or worried because their child cannot sit still or is not one to cooperate very well. When photographing children with special needs, it is important to be flexible and go with what the child is doing. This is one of the best ways to capture stunning images and is really part of photographing children overall. Allowing children to be themselves is important to me because I feel these photos are some of the most natural and beautiful shots anyone can get. In part one of this series, I had a client who had a young autistic child whom I followed around a park and snapped photographs as he ran to various spots. It was quite a lot of fun, and involved the necessity to be flexible. Because of being flexible with the situation, I was able to capture some of the most gorgeous shots of this child, and his parents were overjoyed to get such wonderful shots. 

Photographing Children With Special Needs Is Wonderful!

As I have said in my previous post, photographing children with special needs is possible and is absolutely wonderful! If you have a child with special needs and desire to get gorgeous professionally done portraiture, please contact me today!

Talk soon, Margherita :)

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Related Posts:

Best Ages to Get Portraits of Your Children (Part 2)

Getting The Best Portraits of Your Children

Photographing Children With Special Needs: Part One

Special-Needs-Child-1Many parents long to get portraits taken of their children, and many who have children with special needs find that this can be difficult. This can stop families from getting photographs taken of their children, which means that they will not have many memories in the future. Photographing children with special needs is possible (and an amazing experience) let me show you by sharing a few of my own stories with you. 

Photographing Children With Autism

Children with autism range in how they react to certain situations, making it quite interesting to learn new ways to photograph them. For example, I have photographed several children with autism, but for this blog will focus on two. These two are completely different, and I learned some new ways in which to photograph them, capturing wonderful images. One was a 14-year-old boy who had a very short attention span. He would run everywhere, which led his mum and I to do the session in their backyard. This proved to be spectacular for the family, and I got some incredible shots of him playing on his favourite play set and with his siblings. I even had them all jump on the trampoline because it was a great opportunity just to show them all having a wonderful time together, being completely relaxed. Such a great lifestyle shot, as well, for the family!

Another boy I photographed had a different attention span, and loved his picture being taken. We went to some gardens with his mum and sister, and I was able to capture some gorgeous shots. He would run to a spot he liked and turn around with a gorgeous smile. He gave me about 30 seconds to a minute to capture this before he ran to the next spot. It was quite a bit of fun for all involved! 

Photographing Children With Asperger’s

Another session I did was photographing a young boy with Asperger’s who did not give much eye contact and rarely showed emotions, even if he was incredibly happy. I went down to the beach with him and his family, and I encouraged them to bring along the family dog. This proved to be perfect for this child and helped me get some stunning photos of him playing and showing amazing joy. Making him comfortable and relaxed was the best thing to do in order to get these stunning shots. This is quite true of all children, especially those with special needs. 

Photographing Children With Special Needs Is Possible!

Do not worry if you have a child with special needs – photographing them is possible! It is very fun, and I always learn new, wonderful things. I have photographed children with Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, blindness, and other special needs many times. It is always an incredible chance to meet lovely people and watch these incredible children just be themselves. Contact me today to learn more about photographing children with special needs! I will be more than willing to help you figure out the best setting for your child and will make the process fun and relaxing. This little cutie in the portrait is Jireh my nephew.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Related Posts:

Getting Beautiful Photographs Featuring Children with Cerebral Palsy

Best Ages to Get Portraits of Your Children (Part 1)