14 Charming Toddler Portrait Ideas

toddler portrait ideas ducklings-fabulousphotosbybrittany

Oh, the toddler years! It’s a time filled with endless discovery, curious exploration and growing independence. A toddler’s energy is a force to be reckoned with, matched only by their powerful self-will. Since capturing these pint-sized whirlwinds on camera can be (more than a bit) tricky, we’ve compiled 14 easy to re-create toddler portrait ideas that are sure to bring a smile to both the child’s and their parents’ faces!

Toddler Portrait Idea #1-3 – Close Up

Mommies, daddies and grandparents agree – there’s nothing better than a “close up” of their favorite little sweetheart! It doesn’t matter if the child is smiling or snoozing away, a close up is always a sure-fire hit.

toddler portrait ideas close up-jrishel
Flickr: jrishel
toddler portrait ideas close up bw-vivarin
Flickr: vivarin
toddler portrait ideas shh sleeping-oaspetele_de_piatra
Flickr: oaspetele_de_piatra

Toddler Portrait Idea #4-5 – Exploring the Great Outdoors

Little ones just love playing outside! Whether it’s a blooming meadow, a babbling brook or a park filled with playground equipment, each setting lends itself to the mood of adventure and discovery.

toddler portrait ideas country bridge-joelleim
Flickr: joelleim
toddler portrait ideas picking flowers-trebecca84
Flickr: trebecca84

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #6 – Peekaboo!

It’s the first game a child learns to play which also doubles as a great ice breaker for nervous children and their eager photographers. Playing peekaboo with your hands or with a prop is guaranteed to bring out the giggles in everyone – fast!

toddler portrait ideas playground-brandobean
Flickr: brandobean

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #7 – Off to the Side

There’s no rule that says a head shot must be taken…well…head-on. In fact, jazzing it up a bit by having part of the child’s face just out of view creates a winning artistic touch. Be sure to keep a framed sample copy nearby to showcase this idea to its fullest potential.

toddler portrait ideas peekaboo-beattys
Flickr: beattys

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #8-9 – Walking Hand in Hand

Those wobbly first steps are precious indeed! Experiment with this portrait idea by having the child walk holding their parents’ hands or fingers, or walking along with an older sibling to add perspective and a wisp of nostalgia.

toddler portrait ideas walking with parents-anvuela
Flickr: anvuela
toddler portrait ideas ducklings-fabulousphotosbybrittany
Flickr: fabulousphotosbybrittany

Toddler Portrait Idea #10-11 – Just Mommy (or Daddy) and Me

It’s time for your subjects to pucker up and snuggle in close with this classic parent & child pose. Frame the photo within a variety of settings such as a nearby park or a big cozy chair to kindle that familial bond. Include grandparents or a favorite aunt or uncle to create a beautiful family treasure in minutes!

toddler portrait ideas father and son-joelleim
Flickr: joelleim
toddler portrait ideas mommys kisses-lab2112
Flickr: lab2112

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #12 – One Small Step

When you’re less than 3 feet high, climbing the stairs is a monumental feat! Capture this proud-as-can-be moment with a photo of the wee one ascending that magical staircase of victory. Jazz up the scene a little bit with a sparkly crown, fairy wings or even a little super hero cape for added effect. (Be sure to have an adult or parent nearby for safety!)

toddler portrait ideas one big step-svenstorm
Flickr: svenstorm

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #13 – So Curious!

Toddlerhood is a time for asking all sorts of questions from morning ‘til night. A sweet portrait depicting a little one’s ponderous expression captures both the innocence and wonder of this all too fleeting time in their lives.

toddler portrait ideas curious-37115419@N02
Flickr: 37115419@N02

 

Toddler Portrait Idea #14 – Angelic Profile

A little one’s profile is truly a thing of beauty – just as their mama! The contours of their faces are soft and rounded, from their sloping foreheads to their tiny button noses. Be sure to allow for plenty of light across the eyes to create a slightly ethereal look.

toddler portrait ideas angel eyes-foxtongue
Flickr: foxtongue

 

Ten Tips for Photographing Family Portraits

A typical family picture session scenario looks something like this:  Mother is frazzled from all the pushing, prodding, and preparing she had to do prior to arriving. Dad just wants to get it over with, but acts mildly supportive to avoid the wrath of Mom.  Kids have been threatened with the loss of TV, Wii, or social life. Teenagers act as if they’ve been led to the slaughter.

Children have your attention for about 3 minutes — even with the bribes the parents gave them.

There are always exceptions, but I really find this to be typical. So is Mom’s dream of a priceless family portrait doomed? Is it even worth your time? Continue reading “Ten Tips for Photographing Family Portraits”

Top Ten Tips for Shooting High School Senior Portraits

Senior Portrait Photography

High School Seniors have HUGE expectations

They want to look stunning (read: like a model), they want a fresh and trendy portrait, and they want their friends to be envious of their photos. And maybe one or two of them has an attitude problem. Scared yet?

Senior Portrait Photography

The good news about teens…

You don’t have to bribe them, chase them, or put something on your head to make them look at the camera. So, they aren’t your most difficult client you will ever have (Hint: Toddlers will probably be yours. See our tips on how to photograph children).

In fact, Seniors really are great models when you want to practice great portrait techniques. Continue reading “Top Ten Tips for Shooting High School Senior Portraits”

Photography Posing Guide: Tips for Flattering Poses

How to Pose People Attractively

Photography Posing Guide

The following are photography posing guidelines that may come in handy the next time you are posing people for outdoor personal or family portraits. As with most guidelines, these are just that: guidelines. They are NOT the hard and fast “you-must-do-it-this-way-or-else” regulations. Depending on your subject and the effect you are going for, these guidelines can also be ignored. Continue reading “Photography Posing Guide: Tips for Flattering Poses”

Understanding Aperture: the Key to Being Artistic

f/5.6 Aperture Example
f/5.6 Aperture Example
f/5.6 Aperture Example / Photo by Rachael Olson

People often ask me how to get a blurry background. Something about a blurry background makes people think “professional”.

First, if you want to sound cool, call it bokeh (pronounced: boke-uh), which means “haze” or “blur” in Japanese.

Next, you need to understand depth of field. This way, you don’t let in just enough light, but instead you control depth of field to achieve what you want artistically. Continue reading “Understanding Aperture: the Key to Being Artistic”