Geez, I haven't done one of my "artsy fartsy" photo shoots since April! Yesterday morning, Jim was dressing Dylan while I got ready to go out, and he ran into our bedroom, shirtless, with just a pair of jeans on. He looked like a Tommy Hillfiger ad, and the light was shining in the window in such a way, that I just had to grab my camera. But, once again, I was reminded of some very important rules to keep in mind when taking photographs of children.
1. If you start out with a particular shot in your mind, there is a 99% chance that you will be disappointed. Children seldom share your unique vision.
2. The more pictures you take, the more likely you are to get a good picture. Snap, snap, snap until your fingers won't straighten - we're in a digital world now, so you're not wasting anything.
3. Be stealthy. "Doo-dee-doo, I'm just going to walk over here and grab something, nothing important, don't worry your little head about it...(Whistling)...Then, I'm just going to slowly walk towards you with this thing behind my back until I am just about...SNAP! SNAP! SNAP!
4. Be goofy. Be loud. If you wait until they are looking at you to take pictures, you might have to pitch a tent. Just start snapping away and eventually they will look to see why you are being so weird.
5. Be flexible. (I didn't mean that literally, but if you can bend yourself in a variety of positions, you have a big advantage.) If the kid won't turn around, take pictures of their back. If they want to show you their belly, take it! If they grimace as if in pain at being asked to smile, take that. Candid shots are often the best ones.
Here are my 3 favorites from my photo shoot. I used Photoshop to add an effect to the last one.
Did I get the shot I envisioned? No. Not even close. But, I let Dylan lead the way, and turns out, he knew what he was doing.