I got serious about my camera on the same day I brought my first baby home from the hospital. It was a beautiful digital SLR that I had not learned how to use yet. My baby was also a beautiful baby girl that I had not learned how to use yet. Only one came with an instruction manual. Yet with both, I moved through the months on classes, books, helpful hints and instinct. My baby and my photography skills grew together.
We all want memorable photos of our babies, but it can be very difficult to get that perfect shot when they won't always stay still, smile, or receive direction. From her birth and onward, I was struck by how fast my daughter was growing and changing day by day. I wanted my photographs of her to stand still when I realized that time wouldn't do that for me. My camera caught her numerous smiles, milestones, humorous moments, joys and love. Through new lighting techniques, interesting angles, props, colors, settings, and, of course, patience and heart, I fell in love with the art of making newborn, child, and family portraits.
My crib sheet contains these tips to help you capture compelling photos of your children with any kind of camera, (even a smartphone camera) and in any kind of setting:
- The hows and whys of shooting in natural light, both indoors and outdoors.
- How to follow your baby's lead to tell the story of your family.
- Finding effective props and backgrounds around your home.
- Understanding when to use color in photography, and when to use black and white.
- Unique angles and perspectives to capture your baby's best features.
- Knowing your camera and how to be prepared with the necessary settings in place.
Tamara Bowman is the author of Tamara Like Camera.
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