Fancy Yourself an Amateur Photographer?


Fancy yourself an amateur photographer? Longing to see some of those sleek, artistic photos of your baby, toddler or pregnant belly up on the mantle, but reluctant to pay the sitting fee?

Read on. We have some great tips on taking the best baby, toddler and maternity photos so you can get better results in your own backyard or living room.

Experts say that newborns photograph best in their first two weeks of life. They’re still very sleepy, so you can usually place them in the poses you like without much protest. Try placing them near a window and turning off your camera flash for a natural effect.

It may be best to photograph newborns without diapers for a more artistic image. After the newborn phase the next best age at which to capture your baby is six or seven months, since babies this age are developing their personalities and respond well to visual and vocal cues. You can pose her sitting up, on her tummy or back or grabbing her toes. Use a macro lens, if you can, to capture baby’s feet, toes, long eyelashes and other fine details up close.

Toddlers and Preschoolers
A toddler is the boss in any picture-taking situation. Involve your toddler in an activity that will hold their interest, like a puzzle or favorite toy. Eventually they will look up proudly to show you what they’re doing—be ready to snap. Getting silly with children is also a great way to hold their attention.

As for poses, the key for this age group is making the child believe that whatever he is doing, it was his own idea.

Growing another baby? Take maternity photos around the 32nd week of pregnancy—you want to be round, but not too big. Again, natural light is best, so make use of windows and turn off the flash. You may get better results from capturing just the belly rather than trying for a full-body photo. Remember, your hands will be front and centre, so a pre-shoot manicure may be in order.

When shooting straight on, use a side light to emphasize the belly. Taking photos from every angle offers you lots of choice. Try suspending a large piece of black velvet at a right angle to a window for a low-key backdrop.

Your children are changing before your eyes, and the next thing you know, they’ll be turning 16—so this is time well spent. Happy shooting!

For more tips on taking great photos, visit our Be a Photography Pro page.


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