Using play during family portrait sessions is one of my key tools to get beautiful portraits of children. A lot of clients contact me about family portraits but are concerned their children will not “sit still” for photos. They are relieved when I tell them I love to incorporate play and of movement into my family sessions.
With this gorgeous little family, we agreed on a bush location on the northern beaches of Sydney. It has a little stream, an easy walking track and loads of potential for play. At first we raced leaf boats down the little stream. Then we tried a little sailing boat. There were puddles to jump in, sticks to find and tracks to run down.
I always place my little subjects were I want them for the photos. This ensure that the light is beautiful, so that my frame is just so. I give little suggestions and cues of what to do. But the interactions, they are all natural. One of the amazing things about using play during family portrait sessions, is that sometimes the in-between moments are the golden ones. Such as when we are just deciding where to move to next, these can give some of the most beautiful portraits. A quiet moment of contemplation by a usually rambunctious 18 month old, or a second of concentration on the face of a high energy 4 year old.
I always pack bubbles for the end of the session. I am yet to find a child who doesn’t love bubbles. Everyone gives me many smiles and loads of laughter when popping those bubbles. A fews cuddles and tickles with mum and dad and we had all the beautiful portraits we could need, plus some!
I came into professional photography after photographing my children. My favourite portraits of them involved real smiles, pure joy, and the fun that comes from play. I always try to get “the grandparent” photo as I call it, the photo of everyone looking at the camera and smiling, but the ones I love, the ones my client’s love the most, are always the ones with real smiles, real laughter, real joy and movement.
To see more of my family portrait sessions head over to my family gallery.
Book your family portraits in today!