These days we all love to take photos of our children. Either with a digital camera or more commonly, with our mobile phones. The camera on many of the top end mobile phones is probably better than any DSLR camera from 5-6yrs ago.
So here are some basic tips to help you take better photographs of your children.
Tip 1: Shoot at their level. As (tall) adults we are used to seeing children from one perspective.... 5-6 feet up. We are always looking down at them and when we take their pictures we hold the camera up to our eye and shoot away. This usually leads to a picture where the child's proportions can look odd and can result in a boring photograph. It is also the way we see our child every day.
Next time, get down on your knees and shoot from their level. Straight await, you have a stronger image and things just look much better!
Tip 2: Don't use the 'S-word'. I don't mean refrain from swearing, as I hope that you don't swear in front of your child anyway! I'm saying that it's often not a good idea to tell a child to SMILE. Almost always, this results in a cheesy, fake grin that just looks fake.
The challenge is to capture a natural emotion. Talk to your child. It doesn't matter what about but engage in them. Be silly, tell a silly joke, make a funny sound, pretend to fall over. Children are naturally happy people and need only the slightest excuse to smile and giggle.
Tip 3: Stay Calm and Carry On! Children are very temperamental and sometimes the last thing they want to do is pose for a photo. There's a saying that 'The Camera Looks Both Ways'. What this means is that the subject will often reflect the expressions/emotions of the photographer. If you are stressed and frustrated, then your subject will reflect this.
So, if you find that your child doesn't want to have their photograph taken, then don't get stressed or force them. Just put the camera aside for a moment and change the subject. More often than not, the child will soon spring back to life!
Now go out and shoot away! Before you know it, your child will be a grumpy teenager and no number of tips can help you there!