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Photographing a baby: 12 photography tips to use today



Photographing a baby: 12 photography tips to use today


As soon as a birth takes place, many parents, family members and friends are eager to photograph the baby. It’s easy to understand them: newborns are adorable, and as they grow older, their personality asserts itself a little more each day. Whether it is laughter, curiosity, reflection or cheerfulness that animates them, photography allows us to keep a trace of these unique and fleeting evolutions.

Anyone can photograph them, but these techniques, which you can share with your family and loved ones, will help you create exceptional images of these precious moments.

1. Choose the best moment

With the exception of newborns, babies have habits. Almost all of them do certain things at certain times of the day. You’ll learn to recognize when your baby is feeling best. Try to take your pictures at these times. For example, your baby may be calmer after a meal or just after a mid-morning nap.

2. Aim for eye level

The close-up shots of babies’ tiny feet and hands or babies asleep on their mother’s or father’s shoulder are classic photos of newborns. For toddlers and older children, moving images, showing them playing or in their surroundings, are timeless memories. For these types of photos, the golden rule is to position oneself at eye level for more intimate photographs.

It’s always best to plan the photos you want to take. It’s not possible to predict how long a baby will stay in a good mood, so concentrate on the essentials if time is short.

3. Set your camera before you take the picture

Time is the most important factor when photographing babies. Quiet moments can give you 10 minutes to shoot. Prepare your equipment to make the most of the time when your baby is in a good mood. Of course, brightness will vary, and babies get restless. You’ll inevitably have to change the settings. But for basic settings, such as lens, exposure mode, white balance, capture mode, and other basic settings, setting them in advance allows you to spend more time shooting.

4. Work in natural light

For clear baby photos in an intimate and flattering atmosphere, take advantage of natural light. A simple technique is to use a reflector to reflect the light coming in through the window. You don’t need a professional photo reflector. A simple white sheet or a large piece of white paper or cardboard will do the trick. Place your child near a window and ask a friend or family member to position the reflector so that the light brightens the shadows on the side of your baby’s face opposite the window.

5. Prepare your lenses

The lens used depends on the type of photo you want to take. For overview shots, try a fixed focal length lens, such as the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM, which makes it easy to shoot in low light, like in a bedroom, or a portrait lens, such as the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM. Its fast autofocus speed can be useful for capturing movement, such as a baby crawling or eating.

For sharp close-ups of your baby’s hands, toes and eyelashes, a macro lens, such as the Canon EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM for DSLRs or the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 Macro IS STM for hybrid cameras, is an excellent choice.

In general, fixed focal length lenses, such as 50mm or 85mm lenses, are perfect for low light conditions because they let in a lot of light. But you may want to use an optical zoom lens to photograph your baby on the move. A zoom lens like the Canon EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM allows you to keep the frame when your baby is moving and take a successful picture in a very short time.

Read More : 10 tips for photographing your family

6. Quiet! Take pictures in silent mode

Beeps and shutter release can distract or even frighten babies. The silent shutter release mode can be useful. If you have a Canon EOS M50, you can select the silent mode in scene modes. If you use a Canon PowerShot camera, the shutter is already quieter than on many other camera models. You can also hide the shutter noise by playing relaxing or fun music, depending on the mood you want.

7. Photograph in priority mode Speed

In Tv (Shutter Priority) mode, you can set the shutter speed you want, and the camera calculates the best aperture accordingly. This mode gives you the freedom to work quickly and creatively without having to worry about settings during shooting. For example, the shutter speed should be fast enough to prevent motion blur. For example, when you’re photographing a restless baby, a shutter speed of 1/250 second is a good start. Start from there and adjust the setting according to the activity.

You usually want to focus on your baby’s entire face. It is therefore important to check that the depth of field is not too shallow. An ISO setting of Auto will give you the desired shutter speed and aperture settings, but keep in mind that the lower the ISO setting, the better the image quality will be.

8. Use the continuous shooting mode

Most of the time, you’re probably only taking one picture at a time. But for baby portraits, you should try setting your camera’s capture mode to continuous shooting. Continuous shooting (also called “burst mode”) is especially useful for photographing moving babies! It will help you to follow all of the baby’s rapid movements and will give you the optimal conditions to capture the perfect moment, because no baby will hold the pose for as long as you like.

9. Try it out by focusing on different areas of your baby’s body.

For portraits, focus is normally on the subject’s eyes. But for baby portraits, you can create exceptional images without always taking this rule into account.

Babies are so small that parts of their bodies, such as their hands and feet, can become an interesting subject. If your camera has a touch screen, simply tap the part of the screen that shows fingers or toes to focus. A large aperture will sharply accentuate this part, while the rest of the image will be blurred.

10. Reflect the light from the flash

When you want to control the brightness with a flash, it is important not to direct it into the baby’s eyes, as the light can be very powerful. Instead, use an external flash and reflect its light back towards the ceiling or an opposite wall. The Canon Speedlite 470EX-AI* flash is perfect for this purpose thanks to its motorised swivel head, which automatically detects the right angle for flattering lighting. Not only does this result in a more natural look, but the motorized head can also be used to attract your baby’s attention.

11. Use a tripod

Babies make sudden movements. A tripod may not seem ideal, but you’ll have your hands free to rest or distract the baby and get the expressions you want.

A tripod also allows you to be in the picture and take classic, timeless photos of your hands surrounding your baby’s hands or feet, for example. With your camera on a tripod, set the capture mode to self-timer. Often 2 to 10 second options are available. Select the 10 seconds option. First try it on yourself or ask your partner or a friend to stand where you want to take the picture so that you can make the focus and exposure settings correctly. When you are satisfied with the result, press the shutter release button and take your place.

12. Use applications

There are many useful applications that make it easy to shoot, learn photography skills and share them for fun.

If you have a camera with Wi-Fi, you can use the free Canon Camera Connect application to control your camera remotely from your iOS or Android phone. This helps you avoid blurred camera shake. With the camera mounted on a tripod, you can get the baby’s attention directly by watching the camera screen on your phone and triggering the shutter at the decisive moment. You can also use the application to quickly import your photos to your phone for easy sharing.

The Canon My Photo Coach application offers personalised tips and exercises tailored to your camera model. Simply select your EOS camera when prompted and discover many inspiring video tips, articles and tricks on different subjects, such as children’s photography. You can enrich your photographic skills and learn how to use your camera in a variety of ways.

The Canon My Photo Coach application offers personalized advice and exercises adapted to your camera model. Simply select your EOS camera when prompted and discover many inspiring video tips, articles and tricks on different subjects, such as children’s photography. So you can enrich your photographic skills and learn by practicing.

*Note: Fully automatic indirect flash is only available on EOS cameras from the second half of 2014 or later, with the exception of the EOS 1300D, EOS 2000D, EOS 4000D, EOS M10, EOS M3, EOS M5, EOS M6, EOS M100 models.