Remember when your babies were starting to crawl and everything suddenly seemed like a death trap? The thing you probably heard at least once or twice was "Get down on their level to see what they see and what they can get to." Well, I'm here to tell you that this advice applies to photography as well. If they're laying on the floor, lay on the floor with them. If they're standing up, try to be eye level with them. It will help you to see things from their perspective and it will help to increase the chances of eye contact.
Now with that being said, it's also okay to shoot things from interesting angles. For example, if they climb high up on the playground, it's okay to take a shot from below. It makes for an interesting image! Drawing your viewers eye to your subject is a key aspect of photography, so the angle that you shoot your subject from is really important.
Here's an example of shooting up at my subject. It shows that he's higher up on the playground, but I'm also not looking up his nose :)
Here is a good example of shooting from overhead. Your eye is drawn to her face and those gorgeous curls. Shooting from above also limits the background clutter that often shows up in straight on images.
For photographing children, my biggest tip is to get down on their eye level. Kneel, lay down on the ground, sit, whatever you need to do. Shoot them from their level and you'll see things in a different perspective. Babies (think around 3 months old) are a little bit different because their eye level is SO low that I tend to photograph them from above with them looking up at me. Newborns are entirely different story because you have to take a variety of things into account when choosing the angle that you want to shoot from. Two big newborn angle tips are to not shoot up their nose and have the light coming down their face (but I'll talk more about light in another post).
Here, I got down on the floor with my oldest daughter to be on her level.
I have to preface this image with the fact that I still love this image. This is from my very first newborn session. My light could have been better and I should've avoided shooting "up her nose" because it draws attention to her nostrils and not leaving the attention on her overall gorgeous face.
Here's a more recent newborn with better light and NOT shooting up her nose.
This is what you can get if you get down to their level, when photographing children. Especially babies that aren't walking yet.
For adults, especially those of us with curves, it's important to not shoot them straight on (arms at sides, straight legs, looking directly at the camera). This pose isn't flattering for any woman, but for those of us with a little extra to love, it's even more harsh. Now, I'm not Sue Bryce (Goddess of posing/photographing women everywhere), but in terms of how to angle your shots, always try to shoot from slightly above them. (I'm going to talk about posing more in another post.)
The lovely Jamie doesn't have to worry about hiding unwanted curves, but notice how her body is turned away from the camera, with her face turned towards the camera. This is a great angle for most women.
The best tip that I can always give is to play with your angles and see what appeals to you. Photography is an art, so you should do what makes you happy!
Did you enjoy this weeks blog post? What else would you like to see me blog about in the future? Tell me in the comments below!