Eager to get better photos of your kids this summer? Here are 3 easy steps you can take to get better shots, no matter what phone you’re using.
1) Pay attention to the light. Light is the most important aspect of a good photo. The word “photography,” means “writing with light.” Ask yourself, where is the light coming from? A good rule of thumb is to position yourself so that the light (a window, a lamp, whatever it is) is behind you. If it’s behind your baby’s head, you’re going to get that grainy, dark appearance on their face with a bright washed-out area behind them. Move around to the other side for better lighting.
2) The four sides of the frame are your canvas. Painters have brushes. Musicians have instruments. Photographers have light and a rectangle to use as tools. That means when you are composing a shot, you want to frame it deliberately. Make sure everything you would like to see in the frame is showing, and make sure anything you don’t want to see is not showing. Stand, sit, move or simply tilt your camera up or down, and you’ll completely change the composition and the photo’s impact.
3) Go easy on the filters. You should definitely use filters to make photos pop and give them vibe, but if you want to keep these for posterity, tone it down a bit. In a few years, current filters are going to look really dated — ahem, remember when we used those “frames” in all of our Instagram shots? Most photo editing apps provide a sliding scale that allows you to apply a percentage of the filter to the photo. Generally, stay under 50%. You can use other enhancements like sharpening and contrast to add a little more oomph, but use those sparingly as well. If something looks fake about it, it’s not right.
Sarah Sloboda is a modern photographer for stylish families and kids based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her renowned style of photographing kids has been featured in Rangefinder magazine and many other publications.