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Family Portrait Dos and Don’t s
Key elements of photographing a family The key to a successful family photo shoot is the ability to capture natural communication between family members. It is always interesting to see smiles and movement while having fun at the photo shoot. While panning a family shoot it is important to do the first things first, because kids have short attention. Photographing kids almost never goes the expected way. The happiest baby in the world ends up being super moody during the session. Or it can happen that kids are in different age groups, and there’s the one kid who just isn’t in the mood. That’s what shooting kids is like. Sometimes photo shoot of a family include pets, so always good to do the main group photo first and leave the rest for later. When it comes to details then photographer should make sure people avoid blinking. That everyone has their eyes open. Also good idea to forget about fake cheese smiles on group photo, better capture natural way of being. Blurred background on portrait photography helps to bring out the subjects, photographers use wide aperture to get that effect. The best photographs are often the ones where everyone is engaged or interacting with each other. Understanding that not every picture needs to have everyone looking at the camera and smiling at the same time. Engaged family who loves each other, should keep their eyes on family members and smile naturally. That will become a family photo that reflects connection and love. When it comes to photographing kids and families, there needs to be a different type of “posing” involved. Baby photo shoot for example is a whole different genre The approach to posing families needs to take into account the different age levels. Some subjects won’t be able to talk. Some won’t be able to stand. And some will have their own ideas how everything should be. Kids look stiff if they are forced into poses. They will start hating being on a family portrait.
Interview with Truefie photographer : We asked Truefie.com photographer Brenda from Netherlands to talk about how she prepairs for a photo shoot with a family. ’’I will ask my clients not only to inform me about the number of people, but also who is who; father, mother, brother, how many kids – and for kids I would like to know their age and names as well. It’s important for me to know what kind of pictures they think are most important; I will make those pictures (and the ones I think are important as well ;-)). I will also investigate the location – if possible, if it’s too far away I will look on the internet to get to know the place a little.’’ Location for the photo shoot Always coordinate photographers visions with your favorite spots. Typically locations that have large shaded areas with beautiful trees are good or an open area for little children to run around. Local parks can be great for these sessions. The great outdoors is any nature scene; this includes the beach, a forest, open fields or even rivers, etc. Studio location is good especially for for baby photo shoot and more traditional ideas. The latest location trend that is becoming increasingly popular for family portraits is simply for the photo shoot to be taken at the family’s home. This option provides a new and creative way for portrait photography. Imagination is the limit when it comes to family photos. Always good to include accessories or bring an activity the whole family enjoys. It can be shot in a studio, outdoors or interiors. Seaside, sun, warm wind always gives interesting effect on the portrait photography. Tuefie.com has family photographers listed in all major cities in Holland: Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Den Haag, Groningen etc. Truefie photographer Brenda thinks that its important to choose a photographer who is ‘people’s person’; enjoying the company and being a good listener. Give attention to and making time for your clients. Why? It’s there moment to ‘shine’, to be happy and feel good about themselves and their family. ‘’I think it’s very important to be a calm and relaxed person to be able to create the same atmosphere. Don’t rush anything, especially with kids involved. Just let them play and be themselves; then you will get real smiles on their faces. The portrait photography session must be a very nice experience for everybody involved; then the pictures will be great.’’
Positive effect of a portrait photography session Fun and creative family session can boost child’s self-esteem. By letting kids express their ideas, makes them feel part of the family unit. They can learn more about themselves and the ways to express their thoughts. It’ s always good to show the kid in a protected way on the photo. Even better to print and frame the result and put it on the walls of a living room or kids room. There are many inspiring ways to shoot family portraits. Natural environment with the sun, soft wind or the seaside is always suitable. Mostly these kinds of portraits are shot in high key technique, that means lighter tones to give the feeling of happiness. Family photo shoots can be approached classical way or creative way. Being more creative usually applies to families with kids and younger people. For example, its possible to take a picture from above, so that people are laying on the ground or make the kids hang upside down. Also interesting to use accessories: frames, bubbles, letters, costumes etc. Photographing emotions and feelings, cuddling, kissing and jumping is what makes the picture alive.
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