How To Take Beautiful Photos Of Your Toddler

It doesn’t matter if you’ve never picked up a camera before or if you’re a professional photographer, taking beautiful photos of a toddler is never easy. Even the very best photographers face challenges when it comes to capturing the best shots of an ever-moving toddler. 

How To Take Beautiful Photos Of Your Toddler

However, taking photos of a toddler does become a lot easier when you know how to do it. If you want to capture beautiful photos of your toddler, you’ve come to the right place.

The key to taking the best photographs of a toddler isn’t just a good understanding of your camera. You also need to know how to work with your child, how to keep them interested, and how to set up the perfect shot.

In today’s post, we’re going to show you how to take beautiful photos of your toddler by running through some of the best tips. 

Let’s get started, shall we?

Why Is It So Hard To Take Photos Of A Toddler?

To fully understand how to take the best photos of a toddler, you need to better understand what makes it so hard to do so. 

There are three main obstacles parents and photographers face when it comes to taking photos of toddlers. These three obstacles all relate to how toddlers behave and what they like.

The main obstacle you’ll face is getting your toddler to sit still. Toddlers don’t usually sit still for anything, never mind a camera. Secondly, even when they do stop, getting a toddler to look into the camera is incredibly difficult.

Finally, it often feels almost impossible to get a toddler to smile just by asking them to. There are other difficulties you’ll face, but by overcoming these three, you’ll already increase your success.

What Do You Need To Take Photos Of Your Toddler?

Aside from getting your toddler to sit, smile, and look at the camera, there is a wide range of other things you need to take photos of your toddler. 

This includes physical tools and certain qualities that will make it easier for you to capture the photos you want. For example, you can’t take good photos of your child without a high-quality camera. 

On the other hand, even if you have all the best photography equipment, you won’t be able to take good photos if you don’t have the patience. 

We’ve listed some of the key things you need to take photos of a toddler below!

  • A camera – For obvious reasons, you need a camera to take photos of a toddler. A high-quality smartphone camera or DSLR camera will suffice.
  • A tripod – We recommend using a tripod to take photos of a toddler so that you can focus your efforts on getting them to look at the camera.
  • Distractions – You will probably need something to distract your toddler with, for example, a toy.
  • Lights – Depending on the style of photos you plan to take, you might need some lighting equipment.
  • Patience – You simply won’t be able to take good photos of your toddler if you don’t have patience. 
  • Friendly approach – You need the ability to use a friendly approach when taking a photo of a toddler because it will be hard to keep them engaged. 
  • A location – Of course, you need somewhere to take the photos.
  • Food – Always have food on hand in case your toddler gets hungry.

10 Tips That Will Help You Take Photos Of Your Toddler

How To Take Beautiful Photos Of Your Toddler

To make your life easier when it comes to taking photographs of a toddler, we’ve put together a list of 10 top tips that will help you take better photos of your toddler. If you take each tip onboard, you’ll find it much easier to get the best snaps of your child.

1. Take Candid Photos

The best way to take photos of your toddler is to take candid shots. Sometimes, it is simply impossible to get a toddler to sit still, therefore, we can skip the poses and opt for natural photos instead.

Besides, capturing natural photos of your child playing, etc usually creates a much more beautiful photograph. 

Toddlers don’t want to be forced to sit in one place, so you’re more likely to catch a smile if they’re happy.

2. Opt For A Fast Shutter Speed

Taking photos of toddlers is more like taking sports photos than portrait photos because toddlers are always on the go. As a result, you need to use a faster shutter speed.

Faster shutter speeds will make it easier to capture sharper images of a toddler that won’t sit still. Even when you get your toddler to sit, we still recommend using a shutter speed of no less than 1/250.

3. Choose A Good Location

The location you choose is crucial to the final photos you end up with. It is also important when it comes to keeping your toddler happy.

The background in your photos will most likely be blurry but it will still add to the overall image. We recommend choosing a natural background or a location your child loves. Examples of this include a forest or your child’s favorite park.

For obvious reasons, the location you choose must also be safe for your toddler.

4. Never Take Photos With A Hungry Toddler

One of the biggest mistakes you can make when taking photos of your toddler is doing so when your toddler is hungry.

Like us when we get hungry, a toddler will get grumpy, unsettled, and upset when he’s hungry. 

As you can imagine, this will make it extremely difficult to get your toddler to sit still and smile. To avoid this, make sure your toddler is fed first, or carry a snack with you.

5. Keep The Photoshoot Moving At A Fast Pace

Toddlers usually have a short attention span. They don’t usually have much patience either so you should try to keep your photoshoot moving at a good pace.

By moving quickly onto the next shot, you can keep your toddler engaged and successfully take more photos before they get bored. Try not to take too many snaps in the same place because your toddlers’ patience will run out quickly.

6. Enlist Help To Get The Best Smiles

More often than not, taking photos of a toddler is a two-person job. You can use this to your advantage by getting the other person to help bring the smiles out of your toddler.

Enlisting the help of someone your toddler enjoys being around will bring out some smiles. This person could pull faces, make your child laugh, and act goofy to draw out a smiling face.

7. Follow Your Toddlers Lead

Most of the best toddler photos you can take come from giving your toddler more freedom to do what they want. 

If your toddler wants to play and run around, let them! You can then follow your toddler and capture the best smiles in what are completely raw and natural moments. We recommend using burst mode when doing this.

8. Use Props

Using props is a great way to get your child to stay in one place, look at the camera, and create more unique and beautiful photos.

For example, you could give your toddler a flower to hold if you want to create a more beautiful photo. On the other hand, you could hold a noise maker by the camera to get your toddler to look.

9. Take Photos From A Toddler-Friendly Height

Your toddler sees the world in a completely different way from you, mainly because of their small stature. Therefore, taking your photos from a toddler-friendly height is a great way to capture a photograph that shows the world through their eyes.

Instead of snapping photos of your toddler standing, you should sit at their eye level. This will help you create a more intimate pose.

10. Use Light To Your Advantage

If you’re taking photos of your toddler outside, make sure you use the natural light to your advantage. Using the different shades of sunlight and shadows will help you create a more magical photograph.

Photos taken during sunrise and sunset tend to be more beautiful and flattering so consider the time of day too. 

Final Thoughts

Taking photographs of a toddler isn’t easy but if you follow the advice we’ve given you in this post you should find it a lot easier.

Successfully taking photos of a toddler is all about working well with the toddler. If you can keep your toddler engaged, come up with a good plan, and make the photo session fun, you have a very good chance of taking excellent photos.

While you will need a high-quality camera and a good location, having patience is crucial too. Now you have all of our tips at your disposal, why don’t you plan a photography session with your toddler and see what you can capture?

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Camera Flash Harmful To Toddlers?

After recent research, it has been concluded that there is no harmful relationship between camera flash and toddlers. 

What Is The Best Age For A Toddler Photoshoot?

Most parents plan a toddler photoshoot with their child between the age of 12 and 24 months old. However, it’s completely up to you. 

What Is The Best Shutter Speed For Taking Photos Of Toddlers?

When taking photos of a moving toddler, you need to use a faster shutter speed to freeze 
their movement.

We recommend using a shutter speed no lower than 1/250. 1/250 should be the very minimum.

Laura McNeill
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