I have been photographing babies lately. Babies aren’t necessarily easy to photograph, but they’re certainly fun, interesting, and – when things go right – very rewarding subjects! A couple of weeks ago, I did a shoot with Baby BooBoo, my friend JoJo’s 11-month old baby girl. I came around dinner time so I was able to get some nice shots of the baby eating.
Last week, I did a multi-day shoot with the Wonder Twins, my friend Lisa’s babies (yes, the same Korean-food Lisa I mentioned in my previous post). It was particularly fun and challenging to photograph the Wonder Twins – a boy and girl with two very different personalities. Baby G was just a natural with the camera, which made photographing her very easy. There was one point when she was reclined in her mom’s arms, drinking from her bottle. As I moved around to take her picture from different angles, her eyes followed me, making eye contact with my camera lens. The image below is one of my favorite images from the shoot because it truly shows off Baby G’s personality.
Nikon D90. exposure: 1/25, aperture: f/2.5, ISO 200
Baby B was a different story. He was the serious type and rarely broke into a beautiful dimpled smile. Had I been shooting with film, I would have gone through several canisters just trying to capture his elusive smile! Finally, towards the end of the shoot, I was rewarded with a happy giggling baby. However, I chose to post this pic of Baby B:
Nikon D90. exposure: 1/40, aperture: f/4.8, ISO 200
This one was taken around dusk with some diffused lighting coming in from a window. I really wanted the image to focus on Baby B’s beautiful long lashes and also the serenity of his nap. The angle from above his head allowed me to do just that.
At the end of the week, I had some really beautiful shots of the twins. However, I have to say some of my favorite images were not of their faces. Babies grow up so quickly. There will be tons of pictures of their mugs, but the daily details of their little lives often are forgotten. I wanted to take pictures of those details – their tiny feet and their chubby hands. This one is of the twins miniature feet as they sat reclined in their car seats.
Nikon D90. exposure: 1/30, aperture: f/1.8, ISO 200
So what have I learned so far on the photoshoots I’ve done with babies?
- Always have your camera ready. Remember the details I mentioned above? You can’t capture a shot of that infant smile or those precious baby yawns unless your camera is always ready.
- Don’t be afraid to move around – and above, and to the left, and to the right. Find the right angle for the shot you want to capture.
- For babies, natural diffused light is best.
- Avoid flash. I’m not a big fan of the built-in camera flash to begin with, but it’s almost an entire no-no for photographing babies.
- Take as many shots as you can. Especially when you’re in learning and practicing mode like I am. Believe me, out of those two dozen shots you took is bound to be crisp, bright, and perfect!
Special thanks to Lisa for allowing me to post some pics of her beautiful Wonder Twins!
I’ve still so much to learn, but I wanted to share with you where I am in the process. What about you? Do you have any tips for photographing kids and babies?