Anyone who knows me or has seen my portrait work, knows that I love a good posed photograph. The subject seated a certain way, making eye-contact with a smile (or not) can make for a powerful and moving photograph. But, I also adore a candid photograph. I love them when the subject has no clue you're photographing them. Like you're hiding in the bushes in a non-stalker/non-creeper kind of way, of course. But, I also love a candid photograph where the subject knows you're there with a camera, but you (as the photographer) just let them do what they want. And my favorite subjects to photograph this way are children!
Not everyone likes this, I understand. I think some parents are afraid of what their child might do. Maybe they're afraid of capturing an image of them with a grimace, scowl...or even in a full-on tantrum. But oh the joy of all of those things--yes, even the tantrum. Why joy in a tantrum? Because there's so much beauty in the normal & natural things of life. The times that are fleeting. The images that can only be recalled in the mind's eye of memories or in photographs. If you're all in favor of a posed photograph, I'm with you...I love them! But, let's see if I can encourage you to try a candid photo or two of your little one. Here are 3 reasons you should get candid photos of your kiddo:
1. Capture your child's personality as it is today. Any parent knows that time with your child flies by. One minute, they're born, and the next minute, they're driving. I'm in the stages between born and driving, but time is flying by, nonetheless. As children grow and develop, their personalities do too. Capturing candid photos of my son now at 6 is much different than candid photos of him when he was 2 or three. I look at the photos of when he was a toddler and remember how focused he was on the details of toys. Yes, he's still focused now, but it's different--he's changing, and photographs have helped me capture these changes to relive and remember them.
2. Have fun and memorable photos to adorn your walls.
Okay, I'm just gonna say it. Photos can get a little boring and old if everyone looks the same in ALL of them. You know what I'm talking about! "Everyone look at the camera and smile!!!"...times 100. Again, I love a posed photograph, I take posed photographs, I have these photos hanging on my wall. But those candid photographs can really spice up a wall with personality and the unique flare that is your child. And, they make for more entertaining and provoke conversation with your children as they recall the moments and with guests who enter your home.
3. They will amaze you. Without direction or guidance, you'll be amazed at how your child responds to photographs. Will they smile? Will they cry? Will they stare? Who knows. My favorite thing to do is just photograph a child for a few shots without saying anything to them. To just see what they say or do or what they don't say or don't do. To see where they'll look or what they'll find interest in. It's fascinating and makes for more natural feeling photographs. After some time, I'll give direction an get some posed photos. But, I've found that parents are fascinated by the expressions their little ones give on their own...without my guidance and direction.
So, are you ready to get out there and capture some candid photos of your children? I hope so! Or maybe you already do? Share what you're photographing with me below in the comments. I'd love to connect!