I understand that everyone documents their child’s life in a different way. There really is no wrong or right way to do this. I just wanted to share a couple of tips that I use in case it could help someone else.
One thing to keep in mind is that I use a DSLR (digital single-lens reflex camera aka really nice cameras) for almost all of my photos. I only use my phone when the moment is there and I don’t have my DSLR handy (which is very seldom). I would highly recommend getting yourself a good quality camera before having kids. I was lucky; because of my photography business I had cameras already. I can’t imagine not having something that takes the photo fast (without blurring). Moments go by SO quickly.
With that being said, I do know the newer phone cameras are getting better and better. For me, nothing beats an actual camera. That’s their sole job.
Here are my ‘set’ of rules I try and focus on:
- ALWAYS, I seriously mean always, have your camera with you. I am talking about everywhere. I put it in the diaper bag whenever we go out. That way I can easily access it whenever I feel like.Take a look at a few of the photos below and you will notice that I really mean everywhere.
Target. We go there so frequently that I am ashamed to say that I have a lot of photos of Ben there. I was shopping in the food aisle and look over to see that. I mean, come on, I had to take one!
The zoo. There are so many great places to get some fantastic photos of your child at the zoo. The penguin house is one example. Go when there isn’t a huge crowd and you can really set yourself up for some great images.
2. Capture every emotion. I don’t want Ben to ever think that life is always perfect and happy (Inside Out taught us that, right?!). For this reason I try and capture Ben and all his emotions. When he’s angry, sad, tired, shocked – I try my best to capture it all. So often people get in the routine of grabbing the camera and telling their child to smile. I do that as well, but I also try to grab the in between moments.
Oh, man. I love this. I was going for a run and he was SO sad. His face and the way that window is creating that rainbow? One of my favorites and he isn’t even smiling!
We’ve all been there, right? This was the reaction I got when I told him to finish up his dinner. He hid behind the table.
3. Capture Relationships. It can’t all just be about Ben and Ben alone, right? I want to be able to show him the relationships he had with people, places and things.
I think I can say with 100% certainty that Ben considers Charlie a best friend. The first thing he does when we walk in the door is tell Charlie about his day. In the above picture he just HAD to show Charlie what he made at school. Heart melted.
Luckily my husband is good with the camera. I will treasure this photo with Ben even though my face isn’t it in. I know, in that moment, he wanted to be in his mamas arms. Swoon.
4. Capture the fun of childhood. What we may think is an ordinary moment is actual magic for your child. When I look at my son playing with bubbles or play-doh it seems like a very ordinary thing to do, but to them it’s not. He’s creating magic. I want to take photos that show the fun he had during his childhood. Even with ordinary things.
The happiness just throws itself at you here. He’s just playing with play-doh/making his mom a pizza.
Next time your kid jumps in a puddle grab a camera! The absolute joy you will find is priceless.
Honestly, my list could go on and on. What it comes down to is always having your camera on you. I do this for me, yes, but I mostly do it for Ben. What a great gift it will be to present him with such ordinary, everyday photos of himself and others when he’s older.
Hopefully he won’t be TOO embarrassed of the diaper shots 🙂