To kick off our Mother's Day celebrations, photographer Paige Jones is sharing some of her best tips and tricks for getting that perfect family photo right in the comfort of your own home.
Tip 1 | Prep your Tech
If you are shooting on your cell phone, a self-timer can be really tricky with little ones running around. You’ll want to have your area prepped and tested beforehand—set up a few test shots by yourself so you have some confidence before you bring the kids in! There are also inexpensive remotes you can order online that take photos with a click of a button. When photographing kids, you should expect to take lots and lots of photos. The magic happens during the in-between moments—an unexpected giggle, a quick hug. Just click away and don’t worry about overshooting!
Tip 2 | Prep your Kids
If taking a photo together with your family is something new, give your kids some notice and get them excited about the idea! Tell them how special this photo will be, talk about printing it out; maybe make a frame together and pick out a perfect place for it to go. When kids feel included in the idea, they will be more involved and excited!
Tip 3 | Light Light Light
When choosing a spot for your photo, find a space with lots of natural light. You want to turn off any overhead lights or lamps. Any light that isn’t natural should be turned off. Let the windows do the work and steer clear of any harsh direct sunlight. Putting a window behind you and the camera in front of you will provide a really dreamy backlit glow. And putting a window and camera in front of you will really make your images pop, with an added sparkle in the eyes.
Tip 4 | Keep it Simple
When choosing clothing, you want to first pick something that you feel comfortable and beautiful in. Maybe that’s jeans and a blouse, maybe it’s a floral dress. You want to feel your best! I will say, if you don’t normally wear dresses, your kids will be THRILLED to dance around with you in one! Keep the colors light and neutral, steer clear of too many prints. For the kids, lay out a few pre-selected options for them to choose from, and again, try to keep it neutral. Kids have so much fun if they feel like they are contributing!
Tip 5 | Keep it Clean
You don’t want your setting or background to be too distracting. I moved our dining room table to another room, so we had a nice blank background. Another easy way to eliminate distractions is to hang a white sheet up; now you have your own at home studio!
Tip 6 | Get on their level
Photographs with children are much more powerful when your camera is on their level. So many times we take photos of our kids and we are standing above them. Prop your camera up on something lower and get down on the floor and snuggle those babies up. A few tricks for posing with younger kids:
Ask them to give you the biggest hug EVER or kiss you in silly places like your chin or nose.
Ask them to jump on your back!
Tickle, tickle, tickle
Pretend to be asleep!
Tell them there is a tiny little frog that lives in your camera. “Did you see that?! He just hopped!”
Tip 7 | Have FUN + Roll with it
Get silly, let your kids pick a crazy pose, dance around, tickle each other, go with the flow and HAVE FUN. Maybe your kid refuses to wear pants these days, maybe they just skinned their knees learning how to ride a bike, maybe they demand wearing a tutu every day of the week. You are going to want to remember this beautiful and crazy time in your life; don’t force perfection! And when it isn’t fun for you or the kids anymore, CALL IT! You want it to be enjoyable for everyone, and you want to be able to do it another day—so if the kids are done, be done! The most important thing is capturing this moment in your lives.
We're so excited to see your photos—if you share any on social, tag us @LightboxJewelry or use #LightboxJewelry.
P.s. Shop all the Lightbox pieces Paige is wearing over on our Mother's Day edit.