How To Take Amazing Pictures Of Your Kids

Written by Katie Hintz-Zambrano
9:00 am
12/01/14

Photos Courtesy of Lovechild

It’s the holidays! Which means you’re going to need an adorable picture or two to send out with your yearly card. Of course, that might be easier said than done when dealing with camera-shy little ones. Have no fear—we’ve recruited help in the form of Lovechild, a traveling, pop-up photo studio manned by Annie McElwain and Raya Carlisle. Together, the ladies take the most incredible pictures of kids that are both modern and timeless. How do they capture such awww-inspiring images? If you can’t catch a Lovechild session yourself, just follow the duo’s trustworthy tips below!

1. Play Music: Music sets a fun energy level, and even tiny ones will often dance or perk up when they hear a good beat. We tend to love Motown or Soul to get the kids moving.

2. Play Games: Most kids love playing games and it can generate a lot of natural giggles. One of our favorites is to play Simon Says, where we simply say, “Simon says hug your brother” (or something like that) and then shoot away.

3. Don’t Move: Are the kids constantly running away when you try to photograph them? Try putting a fun sticker on the ground where you want them to stand. When they run away, ask them to go back to the sticker or to find the sticker and cover it with their feet.

4. No Cheese, Please: Can we collectively agree it’s time to stop telling kids to “Say cheese?” We find a natural look to be so much more endearing (even if it’s not a smile).

5. Snacks: Pretty much every parent knows kids love snacks. When photographing little ones, try to keep those snacks non-colored (like white Goldfish or light-pink jelly beans) and give them one tiny piece at a time, so they’re not chewing in all your photos.

6. Get On Their Level, Physically: When photographing an 8-month-old sitting up, for example, try getting on your belly to be at the same level.

7. Unplug: On the day of your shoot, try not photographing your kids (with your phones or otherwise) the whole day or two leading up to the shoot. You don’t want them to be tired of taking pictures before you even start. We’ve even found that talking about the shoot days before and making it a really special event can get kids excited for when it finally arrives.

8. Let It Go: (We know, we have that song in our heads, too). But seriously, once you start shooting, let go of any notion of what you want the portrait to be. While in the moment it may be frustrating that little Harper has her fingers in her mouth, but you will likely look back in 5, 10, 20 years and find that photo to be impossibly adorable.

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