Thursday, June 25, 2009

Photo Tips: Photographing Babies

I'm planning on answering all of your great photography questions, but wanted to do the photographing babies section done first.

Since so much of photography is seeing, I found a great little video to show you with Carrie Sandoval who is amazing with brand new babies.



She briefly discusses lighting, but I think sometimes that's the hardest to get right (well, that and trying to keep the baby from pooping all over you) Since I'm assuming you're photographing your baby indoors, you want to position your baby beside a window in your house that doesn't get direct light. Think of direct light as the kind a cat would want to nap in--super, super bright light. We don't want that kind. The most ideal window is a north-facing window, but any window that's getting nice, soft non-direct sunlight will work. Walk around your house and try noticing which windows get that yummy light throughout the day.

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*shot by a non-direct light window in front of black fabric.

If the window is dirty, that's even better! The dirt will help diffuse the light and make it even softer. If all your windows have direct, harsh light you can always try hanging sheer curtain that are almost see-through. You can position your baby however you'd like (check out the video for some tips!) but make sure your subject is getting side light from the window and not direct light. The shadows on the other side of face gives it depth and makes it more interesting.

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Check out Carrie's blog (as well as her Baby As Art blog) and video for great positioning ideas. I love to see some of your pictures after trying this out!

8 comments:

Kylene said...

Thanks a bunch for the info! You'll have to wait a couple of months for my attempts, but I can show you some of my really bad ones :p Actually I can't...they're all regular old 35 mm...oh well.
But her pictures are incredible. Especially the ones of the babies all wrapped up and hung like cocoons.

Harmony said...

Those are my favorite ones too! I've yet to be brave enough to do that setup though. Want to lend me your baby? ;-)

Sailing Past Maturity Straight into Senility said...

Now I finally have a REASON to never clean my windows - I can quote YOUR advice for diffusing the light!!

LOVE that photo of the father with the infant.

Brandi said...

So, what you're saying is that if I let my windows get really dirty and then I take pictures near it, they will turn out as spectacular as yours? Awesome!!

Chapman Family said...

Where were you when I had my kids?? :) Thanks for this.

Beth&TJ said...

I've been trying to get a good one... probably not hard enough. I think instead of cleaning tomorrow I'll just photograph Kemper all day! Its funny, I can make anything and figure out how to make anything... but I've never been able to take good photos!

Dasha said...

i knew there was a reason for not cleaning my windows. hehe, just one question, do you shoot in b&w or do you change it later in photoshop?

Harmony said...

Tiffany--For baby shots, I do shoot b&w in camera and then add more contrast in photoshop. Babies are the only ones I do that with though!

I do love that I've given everyone a reason not to clean their windows--who knows when a baby could come over!

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