Monday, 16 January 2012

Photographing Children At Parties

Morning! I hope you all had a great weekend.  Today I am very excited to welcome my fabulous photographer friend, Courtenay, to share his secrets in taking fantastic photos at your childs party. So without further ado I shall pass over to Courtenay.



So you are photographing a child’s party, well what could be simpler right! Well I guess it could be, you could do what most people do and stand back and watch what's going on and snap away, but will that get you the best results? Well it will get you some great pictures, but to get the best out of photographing children's parties you really need to become one yourself...a child that is!





What do I mean by that, well simply you need to get into the mix. Children aren't stupid by any sense of the imagination, quite the reverse in fact. They are extremely acute and sense change almost immediately, this causes extremes in behaviour from complete shyness to outright obstructive behaviour. To overcome this you need to gain a child's trust, especially when they can gang up on you in a group situation. How do you do that? Simple, become one of them! You may be a stranger to them an outsider not a parent or friend, so you need to become one of the tribe and quickly.




Put you camera gear away, in fact don’t even get it out to start with. Get down on the floor with the children get involved in their games, be jumped on act the fool take an interest in what they are doing, get involved, take one for the team! Spend this time ten minutes or so, just getting to know the children and let them get used to you, do NOT tell them you are a photographer, you are just their friend. Once you have gained their trust you are now in a privileged position, you have entered the inner circle the magic world of the child, you are one of them and you can now push some boundaries.



Get the camera out, but don’t be obvious, keep the gear simple, one camera body one lens that’s it, what ever you do DO NOT USE FLASH! Flash will put you back 100 years, you will quickly become a grown up again and leave the fantasy world of the child, you have become obvious. You need to continue to blend, and flash will just distract and ruin that special trust you have taken time to nurture. So make sure your lens has a wide aperture crank up the speed and get on in there and be one of the crowd, your a knight defending the castle right? Or a racing driver screeching round the track or perhaps a super spy hiding from the enemy (the adults in the room, which you are now not one of!), be part of that world and capture it on their level.

Thank you Courtenay, this is a great insight in how to get fantastic photographs at childrens parties.
All the images in todays post were supplied by Courtenay and to see more of his work or to book him to capture magical moments with your family or on your wedding day please visit his websites.

Have a great start to the week everyone.
Zoe
x

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