Not Your Everyday Banana

by Bart Arondson

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I floated an offer to my family to photograph my neices and nephews for Christmas. Now, we're doing this with plenty of time for them to get professional work done if mine don't really come out great, but if they do it's a win for them and for me (since I get any size I want this time). So... Given that I've placed my photographic skills on the line, does anyone have some great tips (or sites) for:

  1. Portrait photography of childen

  2. Christmas portraiture in general

  3. Gear suggestions

I anticipate having some fun, regardless, they're all great kids. For help, the age range is 2 to 7 with 4 girls and 2 boys. I also have studio lighting and a backdrop stand.

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up vote 12 down vote accepted

I have been taking images of children recently and found that those closer to 2 have not wanted to pose in anyway shape or form!

My most successful have included setting up a studio area and defining where the children need to be, then letting them play with toys, dance to music and chat away to each other. In doing this I got some nice relaxed poses.

I think its key for you to define what you are looking for, is it a group shot, formal, relaxed, one or 2 children at a time.

On my recent ones I have chosen to shoot with my 35mm-70m 2.8, this has produced some lovely tones. With a small amount of zoom on it, it helps with the fact that the children move around a lot!

My technical set up is normally 2 diffusers, white background, AP of 6.3 to 11 and shutter of 1/125

As for the Christmas aspect -I am sorry but I havent done anything specifically for that - hopefully someone can help you on that.

Good luck!

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@Zoe Bailey: Good shot! I have the same experience with with my 2 year old. –  rfusca Nov 12 '10 at 6:20
    
@Zoe: Nice shot. I'm going to be doing a mix of formal/informal, group, singles, etc. Since we're not a studio dime, we can take time, have some fun, and vary things enough to avoid boredom (I hope). –  John Cavan Nov 12 '10 at 14:15
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@John would thoroughly recommend having some toys for the younger ones to lpay with. the item that has been the biggest hit with the younger ones is bubbles –  Zoe Bailey Nov 12 '10 at 15:13
    
@Zoe Oh yeah, we have lots of toys for them. I figure I have it a little easier since I know the kids love coming to my place! –  John Cavan Nov 12 '10 at 15:29
    
@John - makes it much easier if they are comfortable :-) –  Zoe Bailey Nov 12 '10 at 15:39
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