Let them play. (photography tip of the day)

Good morning friends near and far!  I woke up this morning with photography on my brain. Well, really with life on my brain and why certain clicks capture my heart more than others.  The first ever photography retreat is this weekend!  I have reached dangerously high levels of excitement.  
Last night I found myself sitting at the computer looking at these photos of my girls again and again.  It wasn't like I hadn't just seen them.  In fact, we spent the whole day at home together!  But these pictures help me freeze a moment....steal a second of joy and not let it get away.  So there I sat, looking, staring, smiling. 

Way back when I asked for advice on the blog....tips on what you want to see more of.  It might seem like those responses and suggestions got lost in the shuffle, but they didn't.  One request I received was for more photography tips.  

I want to share a quick (but BIG) one today.  Simply, let them play.  Whether your subject you're photographing is little ones like my own or a group of grown-ups or even ages all across the board, let them play.  
We've all been in a situation where we were "going to get THE picture" and suddenly everyone freezes.  Self-conscious middle school versions of our smiles suddenly arise after years of being tucked away.  If not done naturally, posing can just make people so nervous.  My favorite photos of my girls, family, and friends are those where play has led the way. 

For example, you could let your kiddos jump on the bed, build a blanket fort, play dress-up, or dump out all of their legos at once.  A few more ideas are taking bubbles or kites outside...or even just take a hike.  You'll want to watch out for patchy areas of mixed sun and shade outdoors (this creates a confusing photo often times with people's faces).  But letting your kids play and have fun and experience joy FIRST and then trying to capture it brings a truer reflection of them to the frame. 

My second piece of advice is to get on their level.  Had I simply stood up with my camera and captured them jumping on the bed, well, the story would have entirely changed through the lens.  On their level is where it's at.  Where their deepest joy and soulful eyes can be found.  

I've got a whole week of blog posts in mind for you, sweet readers. 
Thank-you for everyone comment and stop in at my blog. 


  1. Excellent advice. I really don't like staged photos, especially of young children. Your girls are adorable. xo

  2. These are adorable! My best photos of my grand kids are always candid...the staged ones have silly false smiles ...never turn out ! :)

    1. Thank-you so much! I don't usually like the staged photos of my gals either…they really cheese it up for those and their eyes disappear they smile so big, lol! :)

  3. These are adorable! My best photos of my grand kids are always candid...the staged ones have silly false smiles ...never turn out ! :)


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