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Friday, 17 December 2010

How to photograph children this Christmas - Tips from Toni Ward

Ten Top Tips to Photograph Children

1. One of the first and best pieces of advice I can give for photographing children is to remember that they are children! This may sound obvious but so many people get frustrated that children won’t take their direction, hold still or pose for photographs. As soon as you say, ‘stand up straight’, or ‘smile’ children become very wooden and at best you will get a version of what I call the ‘school photo expression’

2. If something you have planned is not working, like descending down a slide, don’t persist but change to something else quickly, ‘What about we go under the slide or on the swing’. Some of my favorite images come from an idea I had that then changed because it was not working with that child

3. Try not to use your flash; natural daylight is your best friend so use it wherever possible. Using your flash on the top of your camera gives off a very harsh result, natural light is much softer and perfect for photographing children

4. It’s all about the eyes, anyone looking at my website -will notice one thing in particular, the main focus of the images is the eyes, this is essential in any kind of portraiture so build your image around that and wait for the right moment.

5. Watch your backgrounds. While you may not be able to control what your subject is doing, you can make sure that there is nothing in the background that looks messy or distracting.

6. Don’t take your photos with light behind your subject, as you will get a silhouette and you won’t be able to see their faces.

7. Don’t take photos in direct sunlight. While photography is all about light, shooting images in direct sunlight produces harsh shadows and squinting eyes. Try to direct your subject under a tree of other shaded area for a more even image and you will see the expression in the eyes.

8. Shoot from above - this is a great angle for children as you will get more of their faces in the shot.

9. Make it fun! This is so important with children. You want to see this in your images as it will show their personality, so entertain them while you are taking photos. Usually the more silly you are the better.

10. Don’t be afraid to try something new. These days with digital technology we can afford to keep shooting away without the worry of processing costs, so if you have an idea try it out. if it doesn’t work you will have still learned something and it is the best way to becoming a better photographer.

So happy shooting!

About Toni Ward Photography

Toni Ward is a professional London-based photographer specialising in pregnancy, baby, children and family photography. With a relaxed natural style, Toni captures moments of tenderness with parents and their child.

As a family photographer Toni appreciates the restraints of family life and will work with families to orchestrate the perfect setting - whether it be at home or on location.

Toni offers a range of photography packages. Vouchers are particularly popular at this time of year to purchase for that special gift at Christmas. Vouchers start from £90 for a weekday shoot. Visit for more information on the various packages available.

Right now, Toni is also offering £50 off the ‘Bump to Baby’ Package (worth £490 usually), for the first 5 bookings made. The package includes all photography sessions, and a stunning 24” by 13” Story Board Frame to capture your child’s journey through the early stages of life. Mention ‘Mum’s Arcade’ when booking.

For Toni, making beautiful images that will last a lifetime is what it's all about! Call her directly on 01932 569 109 to discuss your photography requirements or make a booking without any obligation. Toni’s portfolio can be viewed at:

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