12
Nov
09

Working with Kids

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Working with kids can present some tough challenges. I hasten to add that working with these two boys, Ricky and Ryan, was easy and great fun.

Children can be, well, children. They may not want to have their picture taken. (Many adults don’t either, but they can fake it.)  Kids may get bored easily. It’s hard to smile when you may not want to.  Why did Mom and Dad make me do this?

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When working with kids, I spend a fair amount of time trying to get to know them and hopefully make them feel comfortable. It can be a bit intimidating to be bombarded with directions from a stranger (and sometimes conflicting directions from the parents).  I try to make the process fun. I show the kids the images along the way, so they get a feel for what’s happening. And when the kids need a break, we take a break.

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It’s helpful to have the kids bring toys they like or clothes (like baseball uniforms) that make them happy.  It’s about recreating an environment that is a comfortable part of their lives.

_DSC0172BWAlso, it’s often about waiting. If  I can set up some kids with props, often, I’ll just sit and wait and let them come up with natural poses that are not poses at all. If I can shoot them when they’re not thinking about me, that leads to a natural, relaxed  look that reflects the child’s personality.

Ricky and Ryan were a dream team for me. They are polite, cooperative, and, most of all, just happy kids that seem to enjoy all their experiences – even getting photographed.  It was a joy to watch them snuggle with their mom and review the images on my studio computer at the end of the shoot, and listen to their gentle kidding of one another as they went over the pictures.

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