How To Photograph Children: Secrets for Capturing Childhood's Magic Moments by Lisa JaneHow To Photograph Children: Secrets for Capturing Childhood's Magic Moments by Lisa Jane

How To Photograph Children: Secrets for Capturing Childhood's Magic Moments

byLisa Jane, Rick StaudtPhotographed byRick Staudt

Paperback | April 1, 2007

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A friendly, technically savvy guide to taking irresistible photos of all the children in your life.

Few parents can resist the urge to photograph every adorable stage of their children’s lives, but most parents do it more lovingly than well. No matter how enthusiastic they are, too often the results are blurry, overexposed, and boring snapshots.

Newly revised with an entirely new chapter on the latest trends in digital photography,How to Photograph Childrenoffers practical, detailed, and non-intimidating advice to help transform that enthusiasm into memorable photographs that capture a child’s distinctive spirit (and involve the child in the process). After gently guiding the amateur photographer through such technical basics as which camera, film, and exposure to use, the authors offer specific suggestions about shooting indoors and out as well as invaluable advice (based on their own long experience as successful professional portrait photographers) about working with children at each age. The book includes useful information about how to get the best work out of the photofinisher, even if it’s just your local one-hour mini-lab. Throughout, sidebars offer additional information on everything from film speeds to "smile getters,” and the 200 photographs provide clear examples of what to do—and what not to do—when photographing children of every age and temperament.
Lisa JaneandRick Staudtare friends and award-winning colleagues in Houston, where they both run professional portrait studios specializing in children. Lisa Jane’s bookEnchanted Childhood: The Magical World of Lisa Janewas published by Abbeville in 1999.
Title:How To Photograph Children: Secrets for Capturing Childhood's Magic MomentsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:143 pages, 10.5 × 8.5 × 0.68 inPublished:April 1, 2007Publisher:Abbeville Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0789209306

ISBN - 13:9780789209306

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Read from the Book

Excerpt from How To Photograph ChildrenIntroductionHow many times have you eagerly run down to your local photo processor to pick up the pictures you took of the kids playing at the park the day before, only to be sadly disappointed by the results? What went wrong—your camera settings? the film? the time of day? the new technician trainee at your photo lab? Using down-to-earth information and practical, everyday examples, this book will teach you how to make pictures of children with more confidence, consistency, and artistry.So why another book about how to take a child's picture? That is exactly the question we asked ourselves when we first considered writing this book. Given our talent and experience as professional photographers, what could we contribute that would really help you take better photographs of children? After researching the current books on the subject, we discovered that many of them tended to concentrate on the mechanical and technical aspects of photography, featuring lots of talk about f-stops, T-grain film technology, reciprocity factors, and such. Other books had lots of pretty pictures but offered little or no advice about how to actually make them. Our intent is to teach you to take superb photos of children with even the simplest of cameras.We set out to make this book and invaluable guide for the proud new parent with a throwaway camera, for the serious amateur with a sophisticated 35 mm SLR camera, and even for the budding professional. We have designed it not only to help you create beautiful, well-thought-out portraits of children but also to make the best of your quick snapshots. Our book is full of beautiful pictures of children of all ages, both individually and in groups, with simple, down-to-earth explanations of how those pictures were composed and how they were taken. We focus on children here, but our techniques and ideas can be carried over into all sorts of photography.Because technical knowledge is the cornerstone of artistic expression, we begin by presenting a solid foundation of essential technical knowledge, along with practical every day tips for photographers at any level of skill. You do need to know which tools to use and how and when to use them; you also need a basic understanding of composition and design. With the practical information you will learn from this book combined with your own practice and experience, your camera will soon begin to feel like a natural extension of your hand and mind. Once you reach that heady level, freed from having to worry about technical decisions all the time, we will share with you how to create a truly personal portrait of a child in your own distinctive style. You will soon experience the wonderful feeling, shared by all children's photographers, of knowing that you have preserved a special moment of a childhood, to be cherished for a lifetime.Maybe you are about to give birth to your first child or are awaiting a new grandchild. Maybe you want to learn to take better pictures of other people’s children. Just keep the following in mind, and you will be moving toward becoming a successful photographer of children—whether your own or someone else’s. Always be mindful of how meaningful your photographs are today and will be tomorrow. What this book will teach you is how to create precious memories of childhood. You can make a simple record shot with dull lighting and an unflattering pose, or you can create a wonderfully personal interpretation that captures the spirit of the child. Both images have sentimental value and would probably be the first things that parents would grab to save from a fire or flood. But the images that make you feel something deep inside your heart about some wonderful aspect of a child’s character when he was oh so littlethose priceless images are the one we want to help you make.Who Are We?We first met in 1987 as fellow members of the Professional Photographers Guild of Houston. Today our studios are just down the road from each other, and we're both award-winning photographers specializing in fine portraits of children, with over thirty years of combined experience. We take great enjoyment in speaking to groups of professional photographers around the world and in helping them improve their creative and technical skills in children's portraiture. As parents ourselves, we understand the enduring significance of children's portraits and sincerely hope that this book will enable you to experience the great joy of creating beautiful photographs of the children in your life.When you decide to make a picture, you have two choices. You can either grab your camera, aim, and shoot. Or you can take a moment to think about the situation and determine how to make your picture more creative. We will help you make the following choices:Where should I photograph the child, and how do I place her in the scene to make the most effective composition? What props could the child play with in order to tell a story about some aspect of his life?Is the available lighting flattering or do I need to help it out a little? What can my current camera do for me, and do I really need a better one?Where do I position the camera—high or low? horizontal or vertical? close up or full length? How do I adjust all those settings on my camera to obtain the best exposure? And what film am I supposed to be using?How can I help a child give me the perfect, natural expression I need to make a memorable portrait?Sometimes you will have enough time to consider some or all of these factors before you take your picture. In fact, the planning stage is often just as much fun as the actual picture taking. At other times, a situation will surprise you, and you'll have to pick up your camera and do the best you can at a moment's notice. At times like that you simply allow your instincts to take over, and that's when experience really pays off.Don't let the above list intimidate you into giving up before you start. We will gently hold your hand and walk you step-by-step down the path of discovering children's photography, and most important, will help you to have fun through the entire journey.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents from:How to Photograph Children

Let There Be Light
The Tools You Need (and Don’t Need)
to Do the Job
The Future Is Digital
Choosing a Film
Photographing Indoors
Let’s Go Outside!
Photographing Babies#151;How Hard Can That Be?
Chasing the Elusive Toddler
And They’re Off and Running
Your Own Sense of Style
A Race to the Finish
Hand Coloring Your Prints
The Digital Age
Useful Websites

Editorial Reviews

Praise for How To Photograph Children"The images and the text in How to Photograph Children perfectly reflect the passion, the talent, and the compassion of these two artists in capturing childhood's magic moments. The ultimate compliment from one photographer to another is a spontaneous, "I wish I had taken that!" The images in this book have a sense of style, beauty, dignity, and personal expression that will command that response from amateurs and professionals alike." — Terry Deglau, Trade Relations Manager for Photographers, Kodak