Tips on preparing for photo shoots with kids.
I want to share some tips with you on how to prepare for a photo shoot with children.
- Be prepared – This is my top tip, my only tip actually. So I will break it down below for you. Being prepared from booking the right photographer, what to wear, destination, Snacks, informing the child/children to having a theme and most importantly the BRIBES!
- Choosing your photographer – Make sure it’s someone who has worked with children before and are good at it. Someone bubbly and fun but at the same time not too over the top. They have to be able to read the play a little and know when to let the child/children warm up a little. You usually only have a short time frame to do the shoot so you want them to feel comfortable as quick as possible.
This is hard when you have never meet the photographer before, try to use someone who is recommended and has a great review. Also make sure you check out their previous work to ensure you like their style and lastly once you do find a great photographer that you are happy with, stick with that photographer for future shoots also. The child/children get know them and start building a relationship with them, trust me this makes it so much easier.
- Theme – What is the occasion for the photos? What do you want to use these photos for e.g hanging on the wall, giving to grandparents, using in a photo book?
What colour scheme do you want to go with? What suits your lifestyle, is it a beach setting, country setting, park or simply at home where you are most comfortable? Some photographers also have studios which you can use. Have a look through Pinterest to get ideas of what you like this is also helpful for getting ideas on poses you like.
Cute themes for children’s photo shoots are Christmas (my absolute favourite) Easter, Birthdays etc.. These you can really have fun with and wear bright colours, use lots of props and let them use their imagination (kids love this).
Remember to keep your own style to it at the same time. If you want the photos to be hanging up in your house what colours are going to look nice and blend in or stick out? This brings us into the next tip on what to wear!
- What to wear – The main thing is to MAKE SURE YOU TRY IT ON BEFOREHAND, ALWAYS. Especially on the child/children. Neutral colours and blocked colours usually look best on camera, depending on your theme of course. It’s also nice to have bright colours when children are involved too. Personally I like neutrals best, this way no one stands out in the picture it looks beautiful blown up big on your lounge room wall.
Try not to do stripes and too much of different patterns this can sometimes look a little too busy, and strips play funny tricks on your eyes & on the camera.
Plan each persons outfit, lay it out, try it on. Does it need a headband/bow/hat? What shoes/socks look best? Have it all ironed hanging on the hangar ready for each person.
Have a spare outfit as a back up for the child/children for a just in case, even have one for yourself especially if it’s a newborn shoot. Newborns tend to have a habit of spewing and/or pooing!
- Props – You might not need any, I believe simple is best. Think about the photos you have in mind. Will you be sitting? Do you need a rug/picnic blanket to sit on. I like to bring an old sheet to drop on the ground to sit on.
- Location and Time – Location and time is key when working with children. Pick a time they are at their happiest, try not to pick a time when they are usually going down for a nap (this doesn’t really apply to newborn shoots). If it’s summer try to avoid the heat of the day it really takes it out of them.
Choose somewhere that works for the kids somewhere with not too many distractions like playgrounds/other kids.
- Let them know – This is important let the child/children know what you are going to be doing, let them help you pick the clothes, shoes and the bow (I understand this might not work for all). Explain what the photos are for, tell them it will be something special they can give to their grandparents (this works well on mine). Tell them the picture will be going on the wall or in a book. Tell them where you are going, what will happen when you get there, who is meeting you there.
- Bribes – THE most important tip. What kid doesn’t like a special treat. Let them know that at the end of the photo session if they are good and listen to instructions and have some big smiles for the camera they will get their treat. Remember to pack their treat but do not give it till finished because once they receive that treat, they will not give it back (fair enough too).
Usually photo shoots with kids will be no longer then 30 mins so make sure they are fed and happy beforehand and bring some snacks for after if they are anything like my kids that snack all day long!
Another little trick is to have some little lollies or jelly beans in your pocket, small enough to fit straight in their mouth without making a mess! For those little moments when they are just not cooperating.
I hope these tips have been helpful and make your next photo shoot a little easier but most of all have fun while capturing memories.
Below I’ve added some photos from different photo shoots, with a couple of different themes to give you some ideas for your next shoot.
All photos below were taken by a very talented Perth lady a dear friend of mine Jules, She is excellent with children and make them feel very comfortable, plus she takes Amazing photos. I have linked Jules’s Insta and web page below. (This is not sponsored).
Julie Lynne & Co Instagram
Julie Lynne & Co Website
Above: Liana’s 1st Birthday photo shoot December 2015. All photos by Julie Lynne and Co.
Above: Liana’s Christmas photo shoot December 2016. All photos by Julie Lynne an Co.
Above: Product shoot for Inspired by Liana. All photos by Julie Lynne & Co.
Above: My pregnancy shoot with Luca in my belly and big sister Liana, April 2017. All photos by Julie Lynne & Co.
Above: Liana being my biggest support whilst laboring with Luca, June 2018. All photos by Julie Lynne & Co.
Above: Luca’s newborn shoot June 2018. All photos by Julie Lynne & Co.
Above: Luca’s 1st Birthday photo shoot May 2019. All photos by Julie Lynne & Co.
This blog is in no way sponsored, all wording is my own.
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