I did a kid’s mini-shoot a few weeks ago with Samantha Tomlinson and her son Anthony. We shot at the always lovely Treaty Oak Park, where I had previously done an engagement shoot. The weather was pretty perfect – cloudy with nice, even light. However, when I arrived I didn’t anticipate that a wedding ceremony was set up at the park! Luckily the ceremony hadn’t started yet, but I was a little nervous since kid shoots generally aren’t very quiet.
When Sam and Anthony arrived, I was immediately glad I wore sneakers because he was a big bundle of energy. He ran, jumped and reached for the branches that hung close to the ground. That meant I was also running around (probably giving the wedding guests an amusing show) and getting my workout for the day.
Anthony is almost always smiling while playing around, so the trick was just to catch him looking at me or standing still long enough to get him in focus. One of his more still moments was when he discovered hand sanitizer in his mom’s purse and proceeded to very carefully open it and distribute the gel to us. I actually got him to walk toward me by sticking my hand out and asking for some of the gel, while my other hand tried to support the entire weight of my camera and lens. (eep!)
Even with all the running, I think this is how I prefer to photograph kids – less about sitting them down and posing them and more about just trying to capture them in their natural state while they play. I don’t think Anthony’s smiles would look nearly as bright had I just asked him to say “Cheese!” while sitting in place.
And of course we squeezed in pics with Mom =)
By the time our shoot was over, the wedding march for the bride started to play. A perfect ending to a beautiful afternoon at the park.