Tips for photographing kids

Family photoshoot | Regent's Park, London

family photoshoot london

It’s the August bank holiday and it is absolutely roasting in London! One of the best places to escape the heat is in one of the London parks - especially in the cool of the early morning. This outdoor photoshoot with a family from Hong Kong living in London took place early on Sunday morning when we had Regent’s Park almost to ourselves. It was quite a hazy morning which created such soft, pretty sunlight. It’s the reason why I like to do my sessions as early as possible on sunny days before the light becomes quite glaring and bright.

Why hire a professional family photographer?

Every family that hires me to take their family photos has a slightly different brief of what they are looking for from their photoshoot with me. This particular family really wanted photos of all three of them together, as the dad is always the one behind the camera, so we made sure to focus on making sure dad was in the frame. I think portraits of the whole family is one of the most important things to capture during a family photoshoot - it’s one of the main reasons my clients hire a professional photographer after all! Other than using a tripod and a timer/remote control it is really difficult to achieve photos of everyone together. And even then it is so tricky to nail focus with a tripod (I have tried it myself with headshots and it is almost impossible to achieve lovely photos this way, let alone with a wriggly toddler!).

Photographing toddlers

The other big reason clients give me for wanting to hire a professional portrait photographer is that they struggle to photograph a fast-moving child. Toddlers are particularly guilty of just wanting to run away and explore - and often have full on meltdowns if they are picked up, or diverted from their path! Obviously iphones are really going to struggle here, but photographing children running around is not that complicated with professional-level camera equipment (compared to learning how to use bright sunlight for example), and really only requires some technical skills and know-how (and then lots of practice!). I use “AF-C” on my Nikon camera, which means a continuous autofocus, and then keep the focus point positioned over my subject’s eye, so that they eye is always in focus regardless of whether they are zipping back and forth.

Beautiful family photos

The final main reason for having professional family photos taken is the level of quality of the photos. We all take tons of photos on our phones these days (and of course a professional photographer is never going to be around on a day-to-day basis to capture the nuances of your family), but I think most of us are lacking truly beautiful, sharp, quality photos that are suitable for printing and framing, that will last over the years. Anyway, here’s some photos from this shoot that I hope this family will look back on and treasure!

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