Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Baby Photography

Posted by Kavitha


How/When do you capture those magical moments of your precious little ones ?
Which camera do you use, what kind of photography skills do you need ?
How to take family/home photos that look like they were taken by a professional ?

Whenever I try to take a shot of my son smiling/laughing/doing something that I want to capture in my camera, he would have turned his face to another direction or gotten bored looking into the camera etc.

Stumbled upon
SJ's post where she talks about storing and organizing pics, but not about actual shooting though. Would love to hear from you all about how you shoot great pictures of your babies.


Kodi's Mom said...

you know what? some of the best pictures we have of our son are ones when he turned away from the camera...the play of light, the expression on his face from a side angle make them offbeat and best of the lot. I have no technical photography knowledge to speak of, but from taking a zillion digital pictures, I have learned that what matters is a compact camera with high resolution (5MP), quick response time and a large memory card (1GB, more if you are shooting video snippets).

unless you want pictures for a passport, my reco would be to open the shades, let your little one be himself in the best of natural light, then just click away. one out of 10 pictures will do justice to the moment.

RJ said...

Actually my son, is interested in grabbing the camera. So he comes to me and I try to make him smile. I usually get similing pictures. If your son isn't interested in camera try a toy in your hand with the camera (it might be tough though).
Good Luck!

mummyjaan said...

"How/When do you capture those magical moments of your precious little ones ?"

Hi, Kavitha.

When? Keep the camera handy at all times, and snap, snap, snap away. You will come up with some wonderful memorable shots of your children. Some of the best photos of my children were taken in very ordinary clothes, very ordinary situations, under natural light, no flash.

Lots of things go into making great photos. With children, a lot of it depends on chance. Small children *love* seeing the flash. I have a series of photos of my 3-month old when she was in her crib. She was fussing, so I got out the camera and started clicking away. I got a series of photos, each with a different expression on her face, each good, all unique, none of which I ever had the heart to delete. I got brighter and brighter smiles in each, and when I stopped clicking, I got the cute crying expressions too!

"Which camera do you use, what kind of photography skills do you need ?"

A digital camera that shoots quickly and doesn't pause too much in between. Go for between 5 to 7 megapixels. You don't need photography skills to shoot great pics of your kids. It's mostly timing and luck, the play of colour and contrast, a child in a good mood (sometimes not - you work with what you have!) and some bright light ( I think the photos of my children that have turned out the best are those in natural light).

How to take family/home photos that look like they were taken by a professional ?

Keep taking them. Some of your photos will be better than those taken by professionals.

Oh, and about your child trying to grab the camera or turning away. Don't worry. They all go through that stage. I actually have a few lovely photos were my daughter isn't even looking at the camera.

You might find articles online about photography. Try about.com.

Enjoy taking photos of your child/children. A few years down the line, those photos will seem like the most precious things in the house.

Archana, mama of twins said...

I am an amateur photographer but I take on average 300 to 400 pictures a month of my kids about 10 to 20% are really good, about 40% about average and 40% not so great. I have a Nikon D50 Digital SLR. I like it because its fast, can take lots of shots without having to pause but a second or so, I can customize a lot of settings to get the "perfect" indoor shot that I couldnt with my point and shoot. I would highly recommend the best priced lens you can afford if you go the SLR route as the lens is what makes a difference. I have twins so I am always trying to get both of them in action and its challenging to do so and thats why I shoot a billion shots and i am happy if a few come out ok. I do the same with my food blog pictures so I think thats just my personality!

www.dpreview.com is a great starting point for camera reviews and the users on that board are very informative.

I have an external flash, fixed 50mm prime lens that I use a ton for my indoor photography work and very rarely do I bring out the tripod.

To take good pictures of my kids in action, I have to be unobtrusive and having a tripod, flash all get in that way. SO I have figured out the best setting on my SLR for my living room and use those settings while taking indoor pictures without flash. I like pictures in natural light and its sometimes a challenge to get it without but thats what I prefer.

If you are interested in seeing some of my candids contact me via my site with your info and I will share some pics.

As my kids get older and older its more about the casual "in action" shot than the posed ones. Also I get really good pictures of htem while they are caged in their high chairs so sometimes I take their portrait type pictures before they meals..

Although I love my Digital SLR, they are bulky and expensive. I tend to take more pictures of my kids at home than at parties and busy gatherings as I am too busy with them or too much to carry.

All the best!

swapna susarla said...

Hi Kavita
My daughter used to do the same thing.when she do any funny thing i want to capture it and when i get the camera she used to grab it.Every time it used to happen.i used to hide somewhere and have to take her picture.Once ,when she is 8 months age she is playing with some dollar shaped sun light.She wants to take it into her hands.And as always i wanted to capture it.when i took the camera and snapped it she turned to the other side and i got her back in the picture..:-(( .Every time when anybody sees that picture i explains what she is doing in there....very funny..ha haa...:-D

As kodis mom said the just click and click..u will get a better picture at least once..All the best!!!

Pragyan said...

Hi Kavita, I am not a mom, but loving taking pics of my neice and nephews. And friends kids. Someday of my own. Coming to clicking them, you just have to keep snapping. Of those, some will turn out to be classic shots. Dont try to position them in places. Try to capture their free spirit. The moment you try to get them to pose, they (atleast all the kids I know do) become cranky and the moment is gone :( Hope this helps.

Anurag said...

Well, I'm not a mom either, but I know a few things about photography. Since your son is really familiar with you, you have a better chance of taking a candid picture of him than a professional. When you decide to shoot a pic, wait for a while so that he goes back to his natural self once the curiosity for the camera is over. If you want him to look at the camera and smile, do it with someone else -- you take the pictures, and let the other person engage him. Finally, never, never use a flash unless it is real dark. Natural lighting is the best for taking candid shots.

Any camera will do, but if you can get hold of something where you can focus on the subject, then you will get better pictures. I'd suggest going in for an entry level digital SLR with an 18-54 mm lens.

Kavitha said...

Kodi's mom, rj,mummyjaan, swapna, pragyan - thanks for all your inputs.

archana - would love to see your candids, will shoot you an email.

anurag - thanks for stopping by our club, glad that you read our posts. Looks like, I do need a SLR. currently, I only have a point & shoot.

Tharini said...

How/When do you capture those magical moments of your precious little ones ?

During daily everyday moments. Trying to catch milestones on print. Just any time whatsoever you feel like it.

Which camera do you use, what kind of photography skills do you need ?

I use the Can EOS Rebel, which is a Dgital SLR. SLR's are great to capture pictures fast in the blink of an eye.

My best photo aid is natural light. Throw open the blinds and windows and those are your best chnces for getting natural professional looking pictures. Use as less of the flash as possible.

How to take family/home photos that look like they were taken by a professional ?

This I am no expert at and am still learning.

mummyjaan said...

Kavitha, hi.

I just remembered another great tip that somebody told me - forgot to include it in previous post.

Get down to their level. I mean, really, crouch down to about their eye-level to take their photos.

Baby photos taken from this angle turn our really nice.