It's close to midnight, and as you're lying in bed, scrolling through the hundreds of pictures stored in your cell phone, you have a startling revelation – your 3-year-old takes better pictures than you do! It's the sad truth, and it's time for you to do something about it. You hop on Google and type in “how to take better pictures
than my 3-year-old of my kids,” and BOOM. Here you are, reading this article.
… so maybe it didn't happen that way. Either way, you're here because you want to take better pictures of your family and kids. You want pictures that are worthy of printing and putting into albums, and you don't have access to a professional photographer who can follow you around 24/7 to capture all of your precious memories (or maybe you're Kim K reading this… and, well, paparazzi, so you don't really count). If you want to take better pictures of your kids, look no further –
2. Avoid clutter. I know this isn't possible all the time, but 98.7% of the time, it is best to catch an angle that avoids clutter. If I had shot from in front of my son, looking at him, you would have seen piles and piles of boxes and junk in the background. So instead, I went up a flight of stairs and shot looking down on him. It's a much more visually appealing image without all the chaos in the background.
3. Capture the story. Try to include the details of what you want to remember in the picture. When I look at the picture below, I see my son's love of mischief, food, and making messes all wrapped up into one picture. I could have just taken a picture of his angry face, but instead, I took a picture and included WHY he was angry, what he was getting into, and his angry face. It makes a difference.
4. Find the light. Natural light is about 183947293847 times better for lifestyle photos than that nasty stuff that comes out of light bulbs. So open your blinds and let the light shine in. Find the light and the shadows, see how and where they fall, and use that information to your advantage. Light and shadows can add so much interest to a photograph.
5. Set the self-timer and get into the picture. You will regret it if, when you look back on your life, you aren't in a single picture. So set your phone on a bookcase, set the self-timer, and have a dance party with your kiddos. Set the timer and document the battle field that is a diaper change. Remember the midnight feedings and early-morning wake-up calls. Be as present in your photos as you are in your children's lives, because when you're gone, they won't see tired eyes, messy hair, or yesterday's clothes – they will see love. Pure, unadulterated, perfect love.
What are some simple steps YOU like for taking better pictures of your kids?!