A Quick Guide To Getting Kids To Behave In Front Of The Camera

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Taking photographs of your nearest and dearest is one of life’s little pleasures and even more so when photographing your children. Seeing their smiling faces light up your snaps is a wonderful feeling and these photographs capture memories that can be treasured forever.

However, these pictures aren’t always to achieve with your little ones. With a short attention span and a tendency towards grumpiness when bored, photographing your kids can be a real challenge. 

So, we’ve put together a quick guide to getting your kids to behave when photographing them to help you get those perfect shots.

Getting Kids To Behave In Front Of The Camera

Get the timing right

Like adults, kids go through different energy cycles throughout the day and can have different moods accordingly.

 One of the key ways to get your kids to behave when taking their photos is to make sure you plan your shoot around their schedule. Take photos when they’re well-rested, well-fed and hydrated to make sure they’re not grumpy and have them play with their favorite toy before you start to get their energy levels up.

It’s also essential to keep shoots short and sweet. Anything longer than an hour will start to have an impact on your little one, so aim for around 30 minutes or so.


Prepare to get silly

Many adults struggle to let go when it comes to acting silly but this is a great way to get your kids to crack a smile and become more relaxed. Whether it’s playing games, having them around their favourite toys or doing funny impressions, this will help kids become more at ease and capture those natural shots.

For older children, try some classic dad jokes- they’ll be so bad, your kids won’t be able to help but laugh!


Get them talking

Talking to the kids about their favorite things will help to take their attention away from the fact they’re having their photo taken, making them more relaxed and engaged. Chat to them about their favourite movie character or toy and see how it lights up their face with lovely natural expressions.


Let them be involved

If kids are more involved in the shoot, they’re more likely to enjoy it and less likely to misbehave. Having them choose their own clothes, see the shots you’ve taken, and give their own ideas of how to photograph them will make it more fun and enjoyable.

Having an input into their shoot will make them more engaged, especially if they get to see the end results. It will also usually result in some funny poses as they model themselves in their own unique way!

Check out this post for more photography tips.


Pick the right setting

Kids need to feel comfortable and relaxed when having their photograph taken to prevent them from becoming grumpy. If you try to take forced photos in a studio, they are less likely to feel at ease and the shots will reflect this.

Try taking photos in their favorite places or choose somewhere that they feel most comfortable like their room or a relative’s house. This will produce more natural results that will shine through on camera!


Have a helper

Kids have a notoriously short attention span and can easily become cranky if they get bored.

Having a helper on hand to keep them entertained and engaged whilst you get your shots will improve the results, and having them stood behind you will get the kids looking into the camera as well.

We spoke to Filming with Kids who said: “It doesn’t have to be anything fancy when entertaining kids during shoots. It can be a grandparent playing peek a boo or even just holding a favorite toy in the air, anything to keep them occupied.”


Have a camera ready

One sure fire way to make kids feel uncomfortable in front of the camera is to stare down the lens at them for 10 minutes and make a big production out of taking each shot. Instead, have your camera to hand at all times to constantly snap photos when they’re not paying attention, producing more natural results.


Get real

Finally, don’t be afraid to get some snaps when your kids are misbehaving. Whilst you may feel a bit cruel taking photos when they’re having a tantrum or crying, these show the reality of having kids and can be great memories when showing your grown-up kids!


This post by How Does She has some more great tips for photographing your kids.

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