How to Take Perfect Baby Pictures at Home
Have you tried taking your baby to a professional photographer, only to have your baby cry through the entire session or be more interested in staring at the lighting than cracking a smile? Did you end up spending a good deal of money, but were not all that satisfied with the result?
The last time I attempted to take my girls to a photographer, my oldest refused to smile, my middle daughter threw a vicious tantrum and my sleepy baby refused to do anything but, well, sleep. I left defeated, with no hope of beautiful, perfect baby pictures, three cranky children and a very bad headache. Sure, we were just having a bad day. Every day of my life is not that difficult, but still, I needed a new plan for preserving the memories of their childhood. I had to learn to take better pictures myself. Here is my method for getting beautiful close-up shots of babies and children.
Taking Perfect Baby Pictures
I love faces, up close, full of expression, baby faces. I don’t care for the posed, propped look. I like natural expressions, whether happy or sad or concerned looking, just purely natural.
Steps to Getting That Perfect Baby Picture:
- Pick a time that you can be sure your baby will be happy, playful, well rested and well fed.
- Find a spot where you can lay your baby down flat on her back to take the pictures. Make sure this spot is safe and has abundant natural light.
- Choose a piece of fabric to lie down as a backdrop. This can be a blanket, sheet or anything that will compliment your baby’s coloring. In the pictures to the right I used a sheer drapery panel, because I love the color. Choose a darker shade if your baby has blonde hair (or no hair).
- Choose an outfit for your baby that will blend well with the background color. Since we are taking a close up of baby’s face, baby can be all natural without the fancy attire!
- After lying your baby down on her back, hover directly above her with the camera.
- Zoom in close until baby’s face fills most of, if not all of the viewing screen.
- Dangle a toy with your free hand if your baby needs additional entertaining. Some babies will be fascinated by their parent and the camera and will not need additional entertainment!
- Take at least 40 shots of your baby’s face close up, changing the angle and capturing the natural expressions.
- Don’t pause between shots to see how the picture came out. Just keep going. You have a limited amount of time before baby gets bored and wants to move on to another activity.
- When you are done, and your little model has gone down for a nap, load the photos on to your computer and play with them in your photo editor. Play with the light, and cropping feature to get the desired look.
- Print them and email them to everyone you know!
**Note: I am not a professional photographer. I am a mom with a digital camera and a passionate desire to avoid trekking my kids, dressed in their best clothes, all itchy and cranky to a photography studio only to be overcharged for photos I don’t like.