My love for teaching is just as deep as my love for photography. Whether it's using a fancy DSLR, point and shoot, or a phone. I love offering tips and tricks to clients and friends to help them take better pictures of their loved ones. With this tip series you'll be well of your way.
How do you get your kiddos to sit still? My kids don't like my camera, all they want to do is squirm and play.
Set up an Activity
I often get asked how my kids sit so still. The truth is I rarely pose my kiddo's, and rarely give them directions. So how do I get them to do what I want? I set them up with an activity they enjoy. My boys love to ride their tricycles, paint, and build. Letting them do what they want gives me two advantages. 1. They are more likely to sit still long enough for me to get a shot. 2. They are less likely to shy away from my camera. In fact, they hardly even notice it anymore.
Another advantage of an activity, it's a great story telling tool. What we see as our daily grind and the typical day, can really be transformed into an extraordinary memory. Documenting what your little one's love doing, makes it a forever memory.
Think about when your little ones sit still the longest. For me it's play doh, painting, or when they're watching Paw Patrol. All of these activities are great photo opportunities. Think I'm kidding about TV time, caught these gems while they were engaged in a cartoon.
I really weave this one into the activity tip. While they are playing I talk to my kids. Ask them about their day, what they're doing, say something funny, most of all I play games. I make it fun so they are more willing to give me genuine smiles and emotion. If I want a smile, I ask them to tell me a funny joke, or I say something silly. My oldest and I have a funny sentence game we play. Coming up with wacky nonsense sentences. "Peanut butter noodles" is apparently hilarious. As a result I got this gem.
Another thing I do is ask my oldest to tell me a story. I start the sentence "once upon a time there was a little boy named......" and he basically fills in the blank. With this game we can get silly too, and it also results in genuine smiles and emotion.
Again engaging with your kids in this way makes some great memories for you both. And at the end of the day isn't that our goal as parents? Capturing memories to last our lifetime and beyond.
Fly on the Wall
As you have probably gathered, I have a fly on the wall approach. Meaning, I really step back and let my little ones do their own thing. While I have an initial agenda or vision for what I want to capture, I don't force this on my kiddos. Forcing them to pose all the time and do what I want to do can lead to frustration, tears, and fear of my camera. Which I want to avoid at all costs. On the other hand, this approach requires patience and faith that the moment will materialize. Sometimes it does't and thats OKAY too. Because I can always pick up my camera and try again later. This takes the pressure off, and my kiddos aren't running the other direction every time I get my camera out.