I love a good classic portrait, which you can accomplish using the technical tips from Challenge 1. But I also love a photo that focuses on an action or activity and tells a story. Below are some tips to help you create images that are more emotive, that capture the sweet memories that can be made during even the most mundane activities.
Before we get going on this, a little encouragement: For those with kids, this time of “safer at home” may seem stressful to you. But I promise you, when this is all finally over, your kids will have good memories from this time. It will stand out to them as a time where everything slowed down for them & they spent more time with their family. Your pictures will help them remember this time fondly.
1) Take some photos with the below steps in mind. (Click here to download a memory jog graphic for your phone!)
2) Post your favorite photo to your instagram and use the hashtag #sspphonephotochallenge
**If your instagram account in private, please send me a DM after you post and I will make sure I am following you on instagram. (If you have a private account and I’m not following you — then I won’t be able to see your photos and you won’t be entered into the drawing to win the phone lens kit!).
Activities that you are already doing are all great actives for capturing everyday life in a beautiful way. The activity can be mundane or it can be special.
I promise there is magic to be found in just about every activity if you look at it with possibility in mind. Remember this is about telling stories and potentially showing emotions. These stories and emotions can be happy and joyful, BUT they don’t have to be. It’s okay for them to show some of the difficult things, too. Here are some ideas for activities:
taking bubble baths or drawing with bath markers
playing in a kiddy pool in your back yard
jumping on your trampoline or couch
building a fort out of bed sheets
laying on a blanket outside
finding your toes (little ones usually between 6-9 months)
holding a bottle
napping in the crib
being held by dad or mom or an older sibling
Another idea you have!
After you choose an activity, then choose a location (unless your activity is defined by the location, ex. the trampoline, bathtub, kitchen).
We talked a lot about windows & good natural light in the blog post for Challenge 1. If possible, set up an activity near some good natural light. This *might* mean using an area of your house or yard that you wouldn’t have normally thought to use for certain activities.
It’s important to look through your phone camera as you check your light — light enters the camera differently than it enters your eyes.
Take out your phone and place someone or something in the area your subject would be during the activity. Use this object as a model to test the light. (If you don’t have a person to use – you can literally use a coffee cup or an apple to test the light on). Walk around your subject while looking through your camera until you find the right angles of light.
There may be areas of your house that are already setup with great lighting and you didn’t realize it before! And in other areas, it may take some adjusting to find the right angle for the lighting to work. If your location doesn’t get the lighting you need, consider changing the location of your activity — more on that on the next tip.
If your activity normally happens in an area that doesn’t get good light, see if you can find another area with better light that you could use instead. This might mean scooting your couch forward a few feet, or moving a craft table to the next room over. Or maybe your front door has a big window in it where your kids could play instead of the basement playroom.
Changing things up for your kids like this will also add an element of novelty & fun during this “Safer at home” time!
Perspective will change the emotion of your photos. Experiment with different ways to show the same thing.
Get down low on your child’s level, or get up high for a more aerial view. Get close and focus on little details, or back way up and notice how small your kiddo is in the big room OR how the light streams in from a far away window for added drama in a way you hadn’t noticed before stepping back. Try shooting through doorways or through plants; incorporate architecture if you want.
Don’t be afraid to try any idea that comes to your head! The idea here is to fail 10 times to succeed once.
This is supposed to be:
a chance to create
a chance to focus on the people and things you are grateful for
time for you to do something for yourself that you will thank yourself for later
an exercise to improve your cel
l phone photography skills
a practice in seeing the possibility to capture a sweet memory in an artistic way throughout your day
Photos are not “right” or “wrong”. They are an expression of a moment in time. As a photographer, there are some photo situations I can control completely, and there are other photo situations where I can only control how I respond to the situations around me. If you are working with young children or toddlers, you may need to release some control & respond creatively with your camera
If you need some help, an extra set of eyes during this challenge, or a professional opinion — DM me!!