Child Portrait Photography

"Child portrait photography is a challenge where
you really earn your money."

Children can be a challenge to work with. Children often don't fake smiles which means you must be able to get them to show genuine emotion and capture it in photos.

Child photography requires having the ability to work well with not only photography but with children and their parents. Setting up a studio for it need not be expensive but safety is important.

Your studio can be simple or fancy but the eye of the photographer makes a difference between a good photo and a snapshot.

Child Portrait Photography Tips

A long repeated adage about working with children and pets stealing the show is true. However as a photographer if you can capture that magic of children - via child portrait photography - you can make a living and preserve precious memories for families at the same time.

What age of child will you be working with? If you don't have a preference for age this can mean for variety and more challenges. Toddlers or teens, child portrait photography can have challenges in preferences of the parents as well as the child.

Toddlers can be harder to get to focus and brightly colored objects that are easily cleaned and disinfected can make a difference. Teens on the other hand have more understanding to pose but sometimes have their own ideas. Older children may have pronounced interests that could be used in the portrait such as sports or pets.

Child portrait photography can also extend to school or sports portraits. Attending a practice or game and careful shooting can mean action shots to go along with posed shots which can increase the income for the photographer.

Smaller children can be set at ease with interests. Even in the studio, a model horse, ball or other item can reflect their interest and set the child at ease. A basic colors set up can appeal to a range of situations with simply black, white, dark green and blue backdrops. A few appropriately sized chairs and props can be varied without being expensive.

Toddlers may be well with a milk crate and rugs strategically placed to cover it for sitting purposes. Small rocking chairs can be used. Used furniture and props can be acquired but take care that they are in good condition. Dings and damage tend to be something that the camera may well pick up even more than the eye does. Stuffed animals may also be a way to hold their attention as well as being inexpensive props.

Blankets and patterned or solid lap rugs are also good to use in photos with children. Textures from plush to shag to terry cloth and other fabrics that are easy to wash can be inexpensive ways to 'customize' the look and the photo shoot.

Try a variety of poses and lighting. Child portrait photography doesn't have to be just one pose with front lighting. Try lighting from the side and even some from behind as a variation of lighting use with adult photography. Don't be confined by what books or "normal" poses are defined to be with photographing children.

Seasonal portraits are also a way of documenting the years as a child grows. Be it not only holidays such as Christmas or Easter portraits or spring photos there are ways to run specials and attract business for parents to get their child's portraits taken.

Color coordinating backgrounds with the clothing and props is another way to make photos 'pop'. While lighting and texture can add to a photo structure color also can make a photo especially in photos of children.

Don't overlook making adjustments with software programs on the computer. Although these won't make a bad photo great it can salvage some photos and make them worth selling. Minor adjustments in color, exposure or other small adjustments can be done with these programs. Using digital cameras has meant increasing the sale photos from photo shoots of all kinds.

For experienced amateurs who simply seek to record your children's growth, portrait photography can be a way to do this at home where the child feels comfortable. This can be a challenge in working with your own children but the rewards in good photos are worth the effort.

Child portrait photography can be part of an "all around" studio program or, for those in larger cities that can support a specialty, can be a sole focus of photographers who enjoy the work. Preserve the memories. They're only children for a little while - capture it with child portrait photography.

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