Most of us carry a smart phone around in our pocket or purse and use that for quick snaps of our day-to-day life. That works well for the casual moments we capture, but when it comes to special occasions and significant events (like birthdays!) it’s nice to put a little more effort into memorializing the celebration with more thoughtful photos.
You don’t need to have professional picture taking skills, and you don’t have to stop using your camera phone, but it does mean you put some intention into the images you want. Here are six helpful tips for taking better pictures of your kids when at a birthday party.
1. Designate a Party Photographer
I host a lot of gatherings and I have a pretty good grasp of how to work a camera, but I am not good at being both a host and a party photographer. So instead of trying to do it all, I pass the picture taking over to someone else in attendance (usually my mom) and I ask her to be in charge of taking photos at the event. Guests are always happy to help, so don’t shy away from asking someone to assume this role for you.
2. See Things From a Child’s Perspective
Most adults take pictures standing up, from their own perspective. To achieve some amazing shots of the party, crouch down and photograph your subjects at their eye level. This will capture the kids from the birthday child’s point of view.
3. Add Interest with the Party Details
Sprinkles on cupcakes, specialty candles, homemade decorations, bunches of balloons, stacked presents, and set tables are the party details that shouldn’t be overlooked in the pictures. Zoom in on these delicate items and be sure to include them in your photographs to add visual interest and context to the pictures.
4. Capture Candid Photos
This could be done during the present opening, or any other time the kids are interacting with one another. Laughs and giggles are especially sweet in pictures so be sure to include those in your list of photos to capture.
5. You Can Never Go Wrong with a Photo Booth
I almost always include a photo booth at my parties. I hang a large piece of fabric—solid and neon colours generally work better than something with a colourful pattern, but ultimately you should go with what you like—along a wall (indoors or outdoors) and set out a bucket of assorted items saved from past Halloweens, plus a few new objects if the party has a theme. The kids love to dress up and pose for pictures in costume, especially if they are a little camera shy.
6. Don’t Forget to Charge Your Camera and/or Check Your Batteries
This one is a given…but a helpful reminder never hurts.