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Tips on how to take great child headshots! | Elena S Blair Photography Tips

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I love head shots of children. I enjoy getting close to kids to capture all the sweet details of their faces. My clients love it too, and I aim to capture head shots during all my shoots.

 When you hear the phrase “head shot,” you might think of a boring, traditional image. Perhaps a vertical portrait comes to mind. One where the child is smiling perfectly. I am going to show you how I approach head shots in children, and how I keep them creative and interesting! My headshots are simple and focus entirely on the child’s personality.

You can try these tips when photographing your own children at home, during family photo sessions, or when photographing children during a school shoot. The best part about these tips is that you can implement them at the same time and quickly. Because we all know that you can only hold a child’s attention for so long! Think of them as a routine, if you will. Start with the fist and move to the last. This will yield many portraits of the same child with a variety of expressions and emotions.

1. Intense Eye Contact & Honest Expressions

I love honest images of children. I do not care if they smile, and instead focus on connection. I make sure to get on their level by squatting or kneeling in front of them. I chat with them a bit and allow them to know I am interested and compassionate. I will ask them a question like, “Can you see my eye in the camera?” or, “Do you see the rainbow in there?” This serves to hold their interest, encourages eye contact, and brings more natural expressions.

2. Capture Their Eye Lashes

Children have beautiful eye lashes. When I photograph children I make sure to capture them! I simply hold my hand out at their waste level and ask them to look down at my hand. This image is one parents instantly connect to because it is a detail of their child’s face but also an angle that they often observe their children from. Children are often lost in thought of activity, looking down.

3. Photograph The Child From Above

I think that the perspective of photographing a child from above creates connection for the viewer. Why? Because we are all used to peering down at our little ones. I ask the child to look up at me while standing close and directly above them. I also love this perspective because their eyes are so big and bright. Their parents will love it too!

4. Ask The Child To Look Away

Children have been conditioned to smile and say “cheese.” A great way to get the child to relax their face is by asking them to look away from you. This allows you to capture a new perspective but also gives you a chance to photograph them with a natural and authentic expression.

5. Encourage A Silly Expression

Children love to be silly. Allow them to make silly faces and capture them. Then, after, they are likely to be smiling with an authentic, true to their personality smile!

Headshots of children are important and fun! I use these techniques when I photograph children for my Fine Art School Portraits as well.

Try them and when you do make sure to tag me on Instagram so I can see @elenasblair_photography

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