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Est. 1994

From Playdates to Portraits: Tips for Fun and Engaging Family Pictures for Kids

Imagine this: you’re scrolling through your phone, reminiscing about those adorable baby gap-toothed grins. Suddenly, you’re startled by a voice – your once-tiny tot, now a towering teenager, asks, “Seriously, Mom/Dad? You still have this picture?” *Cue dramatic music*

Yep, that’s the thing about kids. They vanish from the land of finger paints and juice boxes faster than you can say “school holidays.” One minute they’re your cuddle monster, the next they’re slamming doors and demanding privacy (because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t need a break from their embarrassing parents sometimes?).

This is precisely why capturing those precious moments with a professional family picture for kids is so important. It’s not just a photo for the mantle; it’s a time machine, transporting you back to a specific chapter in your family’s story. A chance to relive the messy-haired giggles, the bear hugs that could suffocate a grizzly, and the pure, unadulterated joy of being a family.

The Not-So-Picture-Perfect Reality

Now, hold on a sec. Before you start picturing Norman Rockwell-esque scenes of perfectly posed children in coordinated outfits, let’s inject a healthy dose of reality. Family photoshoots with kids can be an adventure, to put it mildly. Think of it as a photographic safari – except your prey (adorable as they may be) are fueled by sugary snacks and have the attention span of a goldfish.

There might be some, shall we say, “spirited” negotiations with toddlers who’d rather chase pigeons than smile for the camera. You might encounter teenagers who believe a permanent scowl is the height of fashion (trust me, it’s not). And amidst the inevitable meltdowns and requests for “just five more minutes on the swings!”, capturing genuine smiles can feel like wrangling a herd of kittens.

But Fear Not!

Here’s the good news: with a little planning and some strategic silliness, you can navigate this photographic safari and end up with beautiful black and white portraits that showcase your unique family dynamic. These timeless photos, devoid of distracting color, will capture the raw emotions and genuine connections that define your family. So, buckle up, parents! We’re about to embark on a journey filled with laughter, a few tears (hopefully not from you!), and some truly unforgettable family pictures.

Here are 5 tips to ensure your family picture session with the little ones is anything but a disaster:

Tip #1: Embrace the Chaos (Because it’s Adorable)

Let’s be honest, kids are unpredictable. They’re more likely to chase a rogue butterfly than sit still for a posed portrait. Instead of fighting against the current, try going with the flow. A good family photographer will be a pro at capturing those candid moments of pure, unadulterated childhood joy. Did your toddler decide to test their runway skills in the middle of the shoot? Perfect! That’s a photo you’ll treasure for years to come. Don’t stress about forced smiles or picture-perfect poses. The best family photos capture the real, messy, beautiful essence of your family.

Tip #2: Let the Kids Take the Lead (Within Reason)

Involve your little ones in the planning process. Let them pick out their favourite outfits (within some reasonable boundaries, of course – we don’t want a clash of clashing patterns that would make a clown cry!). Give them a sense of ownership over the shoot by asking them what kind of photos they’d like to take. Do they want to recreate a scene from their favourite movie? Build a blanket fort and have a family cuddle session? The more engaged your kids are, the more relaxed and happy they’ll be during the photoshoot.

Tip #3: Bribery is Your Friend (Sometimes)

Let’s face it, sometimes a little incentive goes a long way. Pack a bag of their favorite snacks (healthy-ish options are ideal, but desperate times call for desperate measures) and promise them a post-shoot treat for good behavior. Games and activities are also great ways to keep your kids occupied and engaged. Bubbles are a classic for a reason, and blowing silly faces never fails to elicit a giggle (and hopefully a good photo!). The key is to keep the atmosphere light and fun.

Tip #4: Location, Location, Location

Think about where your kids feel most comfortable and at ease. Is it your backyard, a park they frequent, or even their own bedroom? Familiar surroundings will help them relax and be themselves. If you’re opting for an outdoor location, choose a time of day with softer light, like early morning or late afternoon. Harsh midday sun can not only be uncomfortable for everyone, but also create harsh shadows that aren’t exactly photogenic.

Tip #5: Make it a Family Adventure

Treat the photoshoot as a fun family outing, not a stressful ordeal. Pack a picnic lunch, bring along some bubbles or a ball, and turn it into a day trip. The more relaxed you are, the more relaxed your kids will be. And remember, even if there are a few meltdowns (because let’s be real, there probably will be!), you’ll have a hilarious story to tell for years to come.

Speaking of family dynamics here’s another guide to exploring diversity and celebrating different family dynamics through photography!

The Best Tip: Find the Perfect Photographer

At the end of the day, the best way to ensure a fun and engaging family photoshoot for kids is to find the right photographer. Someone who is experienced in working with children, has a knack for capturing candid moments, and can create a relaxed and playful atmosphere. A good photographer will know how to make your kids feel comfortable and at ease, leading to beautiful photos that capture the essence of your unique family. The best tip: Find the perfect photographer who specialises in family pictures for kids. Someone who can navigate the inevitable chaos with a smile, wrangle even the most energetic toddlers, and coax genuine smiles out of even the grumpiest teenager (we’ve all been there!).

Here at Katrina Christ Photography, I’m passionate about capturing the magic of families. I understand the challenges (and joys!) of photographing children, and I strive to create a fun and relaxed environment where everyone feels comfortable being themselves. If you’re looking for a photographer who can turn your family photoshoot into a positive and memorable experience, I’d love to chat! Check out my availability and my portfolio on my website:

newborn photography brisbane black and white

Book Your Family Photoshoot

This fee covers your photo shoot with Katrina, including a beautiful natural makeup for mum.  You then purchase your photo’s a week later at our Design Consultation together. Please choose either a weekday or weekend shoot. I can’t wait to connect with you and your beautiful family.