even if they aren’t totally natural. Since I am still working on the Q&A page (I am trying to really make it great and answer all your questions in depth), I thought it might be fun to have a “Helpful Hint” post every now and then. Hints and tricks that I use to get those fun memorable shots. In this post, I will talk about how I get some of those natural facial expressions…(shhh- even when they really aren’t 100% natural)This really goes for children 3 and older. Under that age…I just get what I can get. ha
The trick to getting “the shot” or even better “the shots” is to be PATIENT! You cannot rush that perfect expression. Wether you are shooting a client or even your own child…take your time. Let them warm up to you. You most likely aren’t going to get that amazing shot the first picture you take.
My daughter Sadie is my model for today
The picture on the left is the first picture of the series…not so great. I asked her to smile and I got this. Not the look I am going for. ha
The picture to the right is when I asked her not to smile, but to give me a serious face. Children do not know that when you ask for a serious face you are wanting the beautiful dreamy moody look. They give you either mad or very forced tight lips. Her right eye is totally going lazy and while it makes me laugh cause she is so dang cute…I would not print this.
Sometimes the trick to getting that fun laughing shot is just to ask. Sometimes I act a fool to get the laugh and sometimes I just simply ask. On this one I said, “Sadie can you laugh really hard and out loud like this?” And then I laughed exactly like I wanted her to laugh. It was loud, obnoxious and my mouth was open and everything. (The trick is to show them what you want and even more importantly to do it with them) Especially with older kids and adults…you have to do it with them or they will feel self concious and not do it..or only do it half way. You might feel dumb, but look at the adorable smile you could get! Totally natural looking! That is the KEY!!!
Here is another one I got when I just asked her to laugh really hard (again I did it with her) Totally hilarious. She looks like I am tickling her, but really we were just acting silly and laughing our bums off.
Why ” SAY CHEESE” should NEVER be in your vocabulary while holding a camera…JUST DON’T DO IT PEOPLE!
The picture on the left is when I asked her to “say cheese”. Yes, you can see her teeth and yes it somewhat resembles a happy smile, but NO- it’s all wrong. The smile is totally stale and her eyes are dead. (When I say her eyes are dead, I mean her smile doesn’t reach her eyes) She looks like she is in pain. Usually the results when you ask a kid to say cheese is they totally cheese it up and give you a huge fake grin (which can be funny) or you get this.
The picture on the right is 1000 times better and one that I would hang in my house in a second. This shot is right after the cheese shot. Can you see the difference? Her smile is totally playful and REAL and she is smiling with her eyes. Do whatever you have to do to get that real GENUINE smile.
Then when you are real, real lucky you get a shot like this. This is when your PATIENCE comes in to play. You can’t ask a child to do this. They just can’t, but if you are always ready you can catch those thoughtful, beautiful, breathtaking images. On this one. I positioned her the way I wanted and just waited. I didn’t direct her at all. I told her to stay in that position and then I scooted to my position and just waited. I didn’t tell her where to look or what to do…I just waited. Say it with me friends…I JUST WAITED! haha. I literally laid there with my eye in the viewfinder with my finger on the shutter. I saw this and click. GOT IT. This was not the first picture I took in this position and most of them were not so pretty (example to follow), but as soon as this happened…I knew I got an awesome shot!
Case in point. Not so cute. HA! But fun to capture and laugh at later. But I was ready to catch anything she gave me…..
One second later (this was literally the next shot) she moved her hand slightly and looked right at me. JAAACKPOTT! PERFECT shot. My FAV and totally worth the wait!
So hopefully this helps and you maybe learned something that you can use in the future. Let me know if you found it helpful.
Thanks for looking!