Picture this; you’re playing with your baby. He/she is in a good mood, and smiling and looking adorable. How do you capture this moment?
If you’re like me, you will whip out your smartphone, take a hundred photos in 30 seconds, and hope you managed to get one good shot. That’s not ideal, but it works. Sometimes.
If you really want to improve your baby photography, here are some tips to do it:
1. A good routine makes for a better baby photography session
Babies are unpredictable, but they also love routine. And if you work around their routines, you can catch them at their best.
For example, some babies take two short naps during the day, while some kids only take one longer nap in the afternoon. Try to stick to their routine as much as possible to avoid any cranky moments.
2. Prepare the items that calms them down
Your baby can be all bubbly in the first minute and cranky the next. Whether it’s from hunger, sleepiness, or an itch, be sure to have the remedy nearby. This could be either milk or snacks, some baby powder, spare diapers, or other items in your arsenal.
3. Prepare a comfortable environment
From comfy clothes to the right temperature, sounds, and smells; it all adds up. Keep their surroundings as familiar as possible, and keep them listening yo your voice.
4. Shoot in as much light as you can
The best shots need good lighting. However, the flash can be a bit scary for the baby. Test whether baby is more comfortable with a flash or with static lighting. Or, move close to a window to get as much natural light as possible.
5. Bring toys (old and new)
The vision of a newborn baby may be blurry, but they can still see colours. Bright objects will capture their attention more readily. As for toddlers, they are usually more excited with new toys, so take this opportunity to break out that new rattle.
6. Keep the focus on them
The simpler the backdrop, the better. We don’t want to draw attention away from your child. Soft hues for background or a fluffy comforter will do the work just fine. If you have the right lenses, you reduce the depth-of-field for that nice “blurry background” effect.
7. Don’t worry too much about the pose
Some professional photoshoots show a baby all cozy in a picnic basket, or sleeping on a prop cloud. While those look awesome, don’t worry too much about getting your child to look at or pose for the camera. A good photographer will know when the moment is right (and may not need to take a thousand photos to find it).
8. Include yourself in the picture
Besides preparing your child for the session, you should get involved too. A child is always happiest when they see or be with their favourite people in the whole world – their parents.
9. Show some scale for comparison
You know how people like to photograph their baby’s hand in theirs? That idea is to show the scale. You can do the same by placing them next to an item that viewers instinctively know the size. This could be a basket, the palm of your hand, or a recognizable toy.
10. Show off your baby’s character
Your baby may sleep with his/her mouth wide open. Or, they like to growl a lot. Or, they always bite their lower lip. It’s these character traits that make the photo unique, so don’t be afraid to capture them.