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Photographing infants and children can either be really painful and frustrating, or incredibly fun and rewarding. It depends entirely on the child. I kid, sort of. It's what you make of it and how you treat the moment. Children are fast, sometimes moody, sometimes hyper and nearly always think they know what you want them to do when you turn the camera on them. Either run, or crack that huge fake camera smile that they've been taught to do for their school photographs.

:bulletblack: Don't force a smile. If the child doesn't want to smile, don't make them. You'll end up with the fake smile. However having said that, you can try and be funny, but again don't push it. They're smarter than many give them credit for. If you're not getting a smile but you're getting a rude funny face, then accept it. Those sorts of shots can be awesome as well.

:bulletblack: Learn to accept imperfections. Whether the children are strangers to you or not, you can't have it perfect all of the time. Messy hair, dirty clothes, scrunched up faces are all the epitome of childhood and should be captured wholly in their natural state.

:bulletblack: Don't ask for Cheese. Only yesterday I had a group of people stood posing for their photograph and I simply said, "Smile" - and at least half of them said, "Cheeeeese" . It's an automatic annoying thing these days, find a way around it. Cut out the cheese!

:bulletblack: Honestly your biggest issue when photographing infants and/or children is the parents. You need to keep them under control. They shouldn't be barking orders for their kid to pose, smile or stand up straight. That's your job, and you need to take it on your chin and deal with it. Parents can ruin a shot, you don't want that.

:bulletblack: Allow your subjects to explore their area and if you need to get posed shots, treat it as a warmup. Find out what colours work best behind them whilst they look around and get the mystery side of it out of their systems. That way when it comes to time to calm down and stand still, they are a little (tiny bit, miniscule bit) more ready than they were at the start.

Most importantly remember that there is no right or wrong way. These are and always will be just tips. You need to get out there, do it yourself and find out what works best. Come back to this article and let me know so I can expand on it for evermore! :D

Telescope Eyes by Nhung
Precious Moment in Time by MarkGalbreath
sunny rain by zznzz
blue birds. by CaitlinWorthington
The stork restarted by ChristineAmat
Faustine II... by ChristineAmat
Thai Beauty by CobaltKajun
4 Kids by greatanin
Lil' Dandelion by BigboyDenis


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:iconashleyxbrooke:
AshleyxBrooke Featured By Owner May 14, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
I have my first newborn photoshoot on Thursday and this was pretty helpful. Though newborns don't really move much.. haha but I'll be dealing with the older siblings as well. Thanks for the tips!
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner May 21, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
How did it go??? :)
Reply
:iconashleyxbrooke:
AshleyxBrooke Featured By Owner May 22, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
It went AWESOME! Baby was pretty cranky when I first got there but she finally passed out. I might put some up on DA but most will go up on my facebook page :heart:
Reply
:iconicefire8521:
icefire8521 Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Take a picture when they don't know that you are. That way, you get them doing something fun, while getting it looking natural.

That's what I tend to do most (even if I'm practically a kid myself, almost 14).
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Oh yes :nod: That's sound advice :)
Reply
:iconkaizokushojo:
KaizokuShojo Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012   Traditional Artist
CUT THE CHEESE, MAN.
Wait, what?
:slyfart:
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:lol:
Reply
:iconskitty22:
skitty22 Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Well written and well done! Bravo.~ Excellent pointers for up and coming photographers.
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:)
Reply
:iconchlorophylltheleaf:
Chlorophylltheleaf Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Oouw...;A;
Actually,I really like the infants and children photography.:D
So,I like it!:aww:
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:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Excellent!
Reply
:iconpharaoh-ink:
Pharaoh-Ink Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Terrific advice and wonderful work here! Thanks for taking the time and effort. :)
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you :heart:
Reply
:iconrockerchick676:
Rockerchick676 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Professional General Artist
I Loved the pictures at the end, the article itself was quite nice and the information is helpful! I know when I take pictures of children that they usually make me smile more than they do in the pictures! such adorable faces even when they are giving me the whole "I want a cookie give me a cookie" kindof face.
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you! :heart:
Reply
:iconrockerchick676:
Rockerchick676 Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Professional General Artist
:) your welcome!
Reply
:iconpattipix:
PattiPix Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Oh - I love taking pics of kids - in fact I do it everyday! it's my job - here is a tip for getting those great smiles - works well with the 3-5 year olds - using a stuffed animal (snakes or long dog toys work great) ask them if they can growl like a lion or a dinosaur - then tell them don't let the stuffed guy get them - move it towards them tell them to growl really loud - make them do it once or twice - they will start laughing - then wait for about 5 to 10 secs - and as they relax from the laugh - you get a great smile - it takes a bit of practice on the timing - but it sure beats the "cheesy smile" and it is a heck of lot more fun - got tons more tips for little ones - but the most important one is HAVE FUN, make it a game - and the smiles just show up....
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:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Awesome tips there, thank you!
Reply
:iconaelorn:
Aelorn Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
My favorite part is all of those gorgeous features at the end.
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:heart: thanks for reading!
Reply
:iconclaremanson:
claremanson Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
oh my, my kids have such odd fake smiles, my eldest has the typical big grin squinting eyes look, my youngest is so funny she does this huge stick out pout thing and eyes tightly shut! i will have to take a photo of it later to show you, it made her grandads girlfriend laugh so much when she asked her to smile she keeps pulling the face herself.

But anyway i found it so much easier to photograph them when they were babies, my eldest is the hardest to photograph now so i will try and keep these tips in mind for Tuesday when i am taking her photo in her uniform for her first day at school, thank you.
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
:lol:
Yes that's true :nod: Good luck with the uniform photos! :D
Reply
:iconclaremanson:
claremanson Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
thank you.
Reply
:iconjounetsutruth:
JounetsuTruth Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
I find most times when I am taking a picture of my child I get the best pictures when shes not even paying any attention to me and shes going about her business. I have one on my page I took of her and shes being nosey and watching our neighbors out a window that I just love, or like one where she is sleeping. you can get the best angles and light when you dont worry so much about them paying attention to what your trying to do. It seems to work for me
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Ah yes, the candid is the best a lot of the time! :nod:
Reply
:iconmadhatterscat:
Madhatterscat Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
i take photos of my kids everyday because im a proud mother and they are only children once and i for one would like to remember what me and my husband created
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
That's wonderful :)
Reply
:iconmadhatterscat:
Madhatterscat Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
thank you :]
Reply
:iconayame18:
ayame18 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student Digital Artist
I didn't mind saying cheese as a child before taking a picture lol :D I always felt it was tradition to do so, so I went along with it. Interesting article still. I can't believe some people were idiotic enough to comment inane statements also, but then again, I shouldn't be. :facepalm:
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Ah yeas i know :no:
:heart:
Reply
:iconayame18:
ayame18 Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Don't let it bother you though. :hug:
Reply
:iconlargeroomnolight:
largeroomnolight Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
I just came from the hospital. My best friend had her first child. I couldn't help taking a picture of little man having his first meal. Precious :love:
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Awww that's amazing!
Reply
:iconlargeroomnolight:
largeroomnolight Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
Thank you
Reply
:icondrippingwords:
DrippingWords Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student Writer
I think this is a very interesting article :D
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you! :D
Reply
:icondrippingwords:
DrippingWords Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Student Writer
You're welcome :D
Reply
:iconsemper-iuvenis:
semper-iuvenis Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student Photographer
Often, when I work with a child or teenager in their very first shoot, for my youth modeling project, they would smile often, and I would have to remind them to not smile so much. Children and teenagers are capable of making so many expressions that any kind of expression on any child's face would be captivating. A grin, a laugh, or a simple shy smile is fine, and especially for family portraits that aren't meant to show them as models. Children and teenagers who want to model should be able to control their expressions, which isn't always easy. One of my teenage models would often pout.

I never ask people to say “cheese”. It's not fun to say that, or to hear it. I usually count down. I will go, “3, 2, 1, click!”. That way, they know the picture is about to be taken and they can relax instead of being so tense about how they look. Which is handy when it comes to working with children. Always, a child is bound to be nervous, even if he or she is used to the camera.

I shouldn't talk so much. I'm still learning more than necessary about portraits, and photography in general. One useful method, though, for when working with children and teenagers, is knowing that they love to play with clothes, colors, and props (especially “awesome” props like swords and guns... Long story). Always have an useful wardrobe for the child to choose from, let them choose most of the locations, and their own expressions and poses. Sometimes, a natural photograph of a child acting natural, as he or she should, will be great compared to a photograph of a child that appears to be acting a little too much.

Lastly, always have a parent at the shoot. My models' parents aren't always there at our shoots because we have very close relationships, but even then, if you begin working with a child and you start shooting them alone, chances are there's going to be someone who will come along and get you in trouble since you are a) not related to the model in the shoot, or b) a terrorist looking to train children to take over the world. Ahem. But you know what I mean. People tend to get paranoid, and it's better to have a parent so that you as the photographer, the child as the model, and the parent being the responsible party in between, will not get in trouble.

1) Let the child be natural. 2) If they want to model, help them to control their expressions. 3) Have an appropriate wardrobe for them to choose from. 4) Let them make the decision in the majority of the shoot, and have the parents make part of the shoot's decisions and yourself make the rest. Think of it as 50% for the child, 25% for the parent, and 25% for yourself. 5) Research! It's always important to do research, especially of children in photography. Laws vary between countries, so it's best to play it safe and take photographs by the book, even if the best photographers take risks.
Reply
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Your tips are awesome, I'm bookmarking this for a follow on article! :)
Reply
:iconsemper-iuvenis:
semper-iuvenis Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Student Photographer
Nice!
Reply
:iconzayoon:
Zayoon Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Super like , that's really helpful (:
Reply
:iconsemper-iuvenis:
semper-iuvenis Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Student Photographer
:grin:
Reply
Flagged as Spam
:iconkaz-d:
Kaz-D Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
This is simply not true and your statement is, completely and utterly ridiculous. The fact that you would even make such a callous and inane statement gives an indication of what sort of person you are, and that's not a nice one either.

One day, I hope you have something vital to contribute to humanity, rather than senseless meaningless statements such as this. I'll hope for you :)
Reply
:iconanniefelis:
anniefelis Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2012
The guy's trolling, look at his post history on his account. Just best to report him.
Reply
:iconninjafoxsbuddy:
NinjaFoxsBuddy Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:iconwthplz:
Reply
:icontanya3286:
tanya3286 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Professional Writer
Then Anne Geddes must be the biggest pedo who is also a beloved household name... well done with your conclusion. :stupid:
Reply
:iconbradleysays:
bradleysays Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012
No.
Reply
:iconsimtix:
simtix Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I believe that some manners are in order here.
Reply
:iconsavegalkissy:
savegalkissy Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Student General Artist
really? So I guess every parents who takes pictures of their children are pedos?
Reply
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