4 lessons learned using toddlers and babies in photoshoots

We love our children, and the smaller and cuter, the better for photos, right? No, not really. With babies who can’t sit up, they must be propped up, and those who can’t stand, must be held up. Whiny toddlers are promised candy for a non-goofy smile, while we blow lots of bubbles, dance and dangle toys to elicit smiles from babies. Between acting like a clown, making sure no one pours bubbles all over themselves, and trying to avoid grass stains, it feels like a non-stop comedy hour trying to make these photoshoots work. But, it’s all worth it in the end when we finally have the gorgeous photos we dreamed of, but weren’t sure were possible! Below, take a look at 4 of our out-takes and most common mishaps working with people under the age of 5.

baby photos collage

Clockwise, from top left:

  • Taking a photo of more than one child requires more than double the amount of effort to get one child to look at the camera, and to try not to look bored when they do. Plus, it’s very hard to compete for a baby’s attention when he’s just discovered his hands.
  • Photographing an unwilling baby is tough, especially when holding a bright light into her eyes. We dangled a variety of toys to distract her from the light and finally took 2 shots that were worthy to use.
  • When using a baby who can’t stand, someone has to hold him up, or he has to hold onto something (and not let go). When a person is holding up the child, it’s hard to stay out of the frame!
  • A sweet toddler who wants to be photographed is fantastic, but you have to help every single step of the way- including what to do with her arms!

We’ve learned a lot from working with dozens of adorable babies and toddlers and a few amazing photographers. The bribes (yes, there was some candy involved) helped a lot, but we’re really getting the hang of it. New photos of our outfits that will be available for purchase via Kickstarter in November will be showcased soon, and I’ve got to say, they’re lovely!


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