How to Take Better Photos of Your Kids


My love of photography began once I became a mother. I grew even more inspired this past year as I began following many other mothers on Instagram who managed to capture their families in a beautiful way. This prompted me to change my style of photography. The evolution of my photographic style is evident if you are to browse through my Instagram gallery. In the past, I focused more on portrait-style photography. These images are precious, as they clearly depict all of the details and features I don't ever want to forget. More recently, I became more focused on capturing our everyday happenings in a more candid manner. I rely on my iPhone 6 for this daily documentation of our lives and I hope to share some helpful tips with you here.

First and foremost, I would encourage you to just sit back, relax and watch your kids being kids. They are so fascinating to watch. They do funny, messy and emotional things all day long. Often times, we get caught up in caring for our children, and tending to their many needs, and we can miss out on the beauty and joy to be found in just observing them. Grant yourself the ability to indulge in simply watching your little ones, and then snap away! Take many shots of the same, exact scene. You will find that you have a favorite among the many.

Secondly, when using my iPhone, I've committed myself to only taking photographs in good, natural light. Explore various rooms in your home to see how the light changes as the day progresses. You will find that images taken in plentiful natural light will be more crisp and vibrant. It is important to get to know how the light works within your home. Experiment with various types of lighting to see how it affects your photographs. I also love to photograph my children once they gravitate to windows or doors. I find that the window light makes for some magical photographic outcomes.

Another thing that has helped me in my photography journey is to experiment with various points of view and perspective. I built a popular series of photographs on Instagram (#xanderbythewindow__) by accident. One day, I decided to stand on a chair that was left in my bedroom and took a photo of my sleeping baby from above. Surprisingly, I fell in love with the way he looked in his crib from that perspective. I began taking daily napping photos of him and this series of images (over 100 now) has become a precious keepsake for my family.

Finally, I strongly recommend familiarizing yourself with a few photo editing apps. I have come to rely heavily on a number of apps to help perfect my images. I try to share photos that are edited using similar filters and presets which helps create uniformity within my gallery. My favorite editing apps are PicsArt, VSCOCam and Snapseed. All three apps have become invaluable to me. I use all three for various tweaks on just about every image that I share. All of these are very user-friendly and can be mastered with a bit of practice.

In closing, I'd like to leave you with some final thoughts. Of course, we all want to take beautiful photos and there are many fancy cameras and photo editing apps that can help us attain great images. At the end of the day, however, capturing priceless moments, especially of our children, should be carefree and fun. I love my iPhone because it is always there and I'm able to pick it up and snap a quick photo in seconds. These moments with our children are fleeting and I truly use my Instagram account to curate the moments that conjure the most emotion within me. My advice is to keep it lighthearted and fun! If you work to have fun with the art of photography, your images will always be perfect.

FamilySarah HartleyComment