Tag Archives for " family portrait "

Photographing Children: A Few Essential Tips on Working with Kids

kids photography
It seems like everyone posts, emails, or otherwise shares photos online these days. However, how many of those photos are somewhat blurry, were taken in low lighting, or were heavily edited using various phone applications? Although many parents can capture great candid snapshots of their kids, there are many benefits to booking a professional photography session. Not only will the images be clear and crisp, but the set will also showcase your entire family as well as individual personalities and relationship bonds. Make your session more successful with these must-have tips for photographing children:

Practice Posing

Family portrait sessions include a few posed shots, the kind typically seen in school photos or on Christmas cards. To help your kids feel comfortable, explain the upcoming photo shoot and make a game of sitting in different poses. Set a timer on your digital camera or smart phone so that they can see that the goal is getting a group shot. Depending on their ages, you could even pick up a few photo frames and have them each decorate one to display later in their rooms or throughout the house. An activity like this will help little ones see both the importance and benefit of having a photo session without making it too much of a big deal. It also provides them with a great childhood keepsake!

If practicing posing, however, make sure not to have them hold any one position for too long. Although wiggly kids are challenging to photograph, anyone who tightens up to hold a pose will look stiff and uncomfortable in the resulting image.

Prepare to Work Around the Cheesy Grin

To take your practice session one step further, considering visiting the location with your little ones in tow. Let them play in and explore the area as you take a few casual snapshots. This way, they will be used to having someone take photos without feeling the need to grin every time the camera turns their way. Next, try asking one of your children to turn directly to the camera as you make a silly face or tell a joke. Avoid saying a trigger word, such as “cheese!” or “smile!” Instead of over-widening their smiles into something forced, your kids may begin to understand what a natural smile really feels like.

If that does not work, try this trick. Encourage your child to make grumpy faces, then silly faces, and then smile. The chances are that those final shots will be of a beautifully relaxed and natural smile! After all, the goal while photographing children should be to photograph what is genuine and real. Working around a fake smile can be a challenge, but a little bit of experimentation and creativity goes a long way into taking pictures worth keeping.

pet photography

Let Them Get the Wiggles Out

In addition to capturing posed, formal family portraits, your photographer should actively work to capture candid moments. Dress your kids in comfortable clothes and let them climb a tree, play a game together, build a sand castle, or play on park equipment. A few clicks of the camera will capture your children laughing, smiling, and playing freely and genuinely. Candid shots are the best way to capture individual personalities as well as tight-knit sibling or child-parent bonds.

As a photographer, I often let the little ones take the lead for part of a shoot, as I will happily follow them to a new piece of playground equipment or crawl on the ground to get a truly great shot. You shoot should be fun and enjoyable, as the best images come when everyone feels comfortable and relaxed.

Incorporate a Pet or Prop

Is your youngest one camera-shy? Does your middle child have trouble sitting still or focusing? Try incorporating your family dog into the shoot. The kids can sit or play with the dog, which might make them feel more comfortable and less shy in general. Alternatively, bring along your toddler’s favourite toy or even a few books. Kids can cuddle their stuffed animals, dig on the beach, or examine a pile of shells. Alternatively, you could have older siblings can read to younger ones or organize a game. Do whatever will help your little ones feel happy and at ease.

Book Your Session Today!

Do you need an updated family portrait, but are afraid that your little ones will not sit still long enough? I have years of experience photographing children, including newborns, multiple children, and children with special needs. I want your kids to have fun on the shoot, because those are the memories worth capturing and keeping. Contact me today with any questions or for more information about booking a session.

Talk Soon,
Margherita :)

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5 Tips for Including Your Family Pet in a Photo Shoot

photography tips

For many people, our pets are undeniably one of the family. The bond between children and animals is particularly worth capturing and remembering. Thankfully, I have plenty of experience photographing animals and am more than happy to discuss including them when booking a family portrait session. Here is a handful of tips for including the family dog, cat, horse, or another pet in your photo shoot:

  1. Keep the Background Simple

This tip is great for portraits of any kind, but it is especially important when working with animals. There will be a lot happening in the shot, so keeping the background simple will help keep the focus on your smiles. Examples of good locations include a single, statement tree or the expanse of the ocean and beach. Indoor shoots might be best for cats, rabbits, or very small dogs that might get nervous easily.

  1. Wear Comfortable Clothes

dogsIncluding a pet in your family portrait session will help keep the tone light-hearted and natural, enabling me to capture plenty of candid or more casual lifestyle shots. The entire group should be in comfortable clothes that work well in a variety of poses and go well with the location of the shoot. Still, be sure to decide ahead of time which person will sit next to the pet and make sure they wear wrinkle- and fur-resistant clothing! If you want your pet to wear a bow, bandana, or collar accessory, try it on several times so that he or she can get used to it.

  1. Consider Their Colouring

If you have a black cat or dog, they will look great with blue jeans and other, lighter colours but may blend into dress pants or dark dresses. The idea of trying not to match holds true for photographing animals of any colour, from fluffy white cats to sunny golden retrievers.

  1. Find a Relaxing Position

Since many animals react negatively to the stress around them, it is important to stay calm and flexible throughout the shoot. Some poses will not work, or your dog may need a few breaks to run and play. It may be easier to have the family come and get into position when your animal does decide to sit up or lie down somewhere. Alternatively, one of the best ways to include a pet in a photo is to have him or her sitting in someone’s lap.

If you keep in mind that you may not want your canine companion in every shot, however, that can also help take the pressure off. We can simply include the pet again when he or she is calmed down or has a better attention span. It may take lots of shots and moving around, but I will absolutely get multiple images worth keeping!

  1. Capture Moments in Action

To truly capture a pet’s personality and the bond between your family and your pet, I will want to take plenty of action shots. I might ask that you walk or run on the beach, or bring along a favourite toy for your children and pet to play with. Your family portrait session will include both posed and more casual images, so feel free to laugh and play freely.

Photographing animals can take a bit more effort, but it is well worth it to capture a very authentic, happy moment of your entire family. Contact me for more information on booking a session or including a pet in your photo shoot.

Talk soon,
Margherita :)

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Family Portraits and Storytelling

Sept50Portraits are so important for families and children, as they tell a story of that particular family. Each family has a unique story and I enjoy hearing each one as I take their photographs. The stories are varied, but I am always grateful to hear the little gems families tell me. One of the stories I hear consistently is how important family portraits are to many people. Because of this, I will be talking about the importance of family portraits in this blog and, specifically, how children truly appreciate seeing their photos on those physical walls.

First, a Story

I was taking portraits for a family with five children and began chatting with the father. He told me that portraits show children that they are loved and if the children have any doubts at any time, all they have to do is look to the wall to know they are loved. This was truly a remarkable statement and he explained that growing up his father never had portraits of him or his siblings on their walls. He saw many other families with professional, gorgeous portraits, but they never had any. One day this man asked his father if he loved the children, which shocked the father. Of course, he did! It simply came down to the children not seeing their photos and did not feel loved. Because of this, the gentleman wanted photos of his children to place on the family’s wall.

Family Portraits Are a Form of Storytelling

Stories make up a large part of our lives and we are daily living out these stories. Sometimes we remember things later on in life but other times it is easy to forget. This is where family portraits combine with storytelling because it is a great way to remember little stories and share them with future generations. In every session, there will always be a random memory or funny instance that pops up and I always try to get these on camera. These make some of the best memories for families and always look great up on their walls and in a portrait book. A year, two years, or ten years later, families can look through their portrait book and look on their walls and remember the fun time they had when getting those portraits taken! 

They Create Memories for Your Children

Most importantly, portraits create memories for your children and tangibly show them that they are loved and important. You may be surprised at just how much a child will remember and how early their first memories are. Many children will remember a photo session with their family and will look back fondly on those times when they are older. They will know from a young age just how loved they are when you make time to get photos taken together. They willalso know they are loved when you frame and hang the portraits on the wall. Like I said earlier, photos on the walls matter to children. 

Never Hesitate to Get Photos Taken

You should never hesitate to get your family portraits taken. Yes, there will always be the worry of a child having meltdown but I have captured many wonderful portraits for families to hold on to and cherish. Call me to set up a session and begin a storytelling adventure with family portraits! They will last ages and will make very fond memories for all.

Talk soon,

Margherita :)

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