Two girls, a pot and many photographs

kids posing for photographs

Akshara doesn’t need much prompting to pose for photographs and using props seems to come naturally to her :-). We had just got down for lunch at a road-side restaurant. I was commenting to Vidhya on how good the evening light was and there Akshara was, ready for an impromptu photo session along with the pot.

kids posing for photographs

kids posing for photographs

Laya also joined in and was initially pretty confused at what was happening. She needed a bit of reassurance from Akshara that all such twisting and turning was part of the “fun”.

kids posing for photographs

kids posing for photographs

kids posing for photographs

Once Laya understood the purpose, her smile came out and the pair were up to what they do best!

kids posing for photographs

kids posing for photographs

The photographer and the model

The Model:

Name: Akshara,    Age: Old enough to realise that photographs of models standing in attention doesn’t work nowadays

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

The Photographer:

Name: Hari,    Age: Old enough to understand the nuances of photography

Tool: Not an expensive digital SLR, but a plastic camera gifted by Santa for Christmas

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Let the shoot begin!

The model is ready, but the photographer doesn’t seem to be. But, then what do models know about photography? There is lot of tweaking around required according to the light’s intensity, direction blah blah blah…

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Ok, now we are set, let’s get shooting…

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Now some lessons to budding photographers. To get a halo or the golden light around a model’s hair, keep the sun to the side or behind the model. Also, don’t always expect the model to contort her body. You can achieve the same effect by a simple tilt of the camera.

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

The model suddenly feels that this location is not interesting enough and decides to apply her experience in finding a better spot.

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

The model suggests that the tree would make the photo stand out. So, the photographer decides to get a first-hand view of the light from various spots around the tree.

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Once they agree on the perfect conditions, a beautiful photo is just a walk in the park for this photographer-model pair. A perfect end to a perfect day!

Kids Photography - Photographer and the model

Fun on the Beach

We had been to Daman and Silvassa for the new year weekend. We stayed at Daman and the Jampore beach was a short drive from the hotel. I have never seen such significant low/high tides and the difference between the two here was more than a kilometre! So, that meant that there was lot of soft wet sand on the beach for quite a distance which added to the fun.

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

It didn’t take long for Akshara to realise that wet soft sand was actually a cool thing to play with. So, within minutes she started to do what kids love to do, get messy!

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Seeing others around, i guess that she started feeling stupid being the only one with slippers on. Off went the crocs. Somehow, this delicate balancing act of getting her crocs off without tipping over made her feel very proud.

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

With Shriya for company, she began exploring the vastness of the shore. They were very curious about the reflection which made Akshara say “touch Akshara” (the reflection!), which made Vidhya say “Oh! No”.

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

We walked all the way to meet the waves. It was difficult to make Shriya and Akshara come back as they enjoyed the small waves hitting their even smaller feet. But, as always, the pretext of a photo session and some running around on the sand did get Akshara back.

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

All that running around on the sand did make Akshara tired. So tired that she wasn’t willing share a coconut and wanted one of her own.

Fun at Jampore Beach in Daman

Getting kids to smile and pose for a photograph

We have been trying to teach Akshara to smile for photographs for quite some time now. She smiles normally during regular conversations, but her smile takes a totally different flavour when done for photographs! Neither i or Vidhya smile like this, so she definitely didn’t pick this up from us.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

We do hit the purple patch sometimes, but that depends on the combination of the luck of the photographer and the camera! Also, it does help if Laya is next to her to get her in the good mood for photographs.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

So, we started trying out different things when the smile just doesn’t get going. Thanks to one of Vidhya’s cousins, Akshara was introduced to the “surprise” look. Though this is not the equivalent of a smile, this definitely looks better on a photograph.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

But, this too doesn’t guarantee results, as the “surprise” sometimes becomes extremely contorted.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

We were at the grahapravesham function of my b-i-l in Chennai and Vidhya wanted a lot of the girls-only snaps with many of her cousins and their kids at the function. This was easier said than done with every kid wanting to do its own thing (actually everyone other than Laya and Akshara were a bit older and co-operated with the requests).

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

All of us were munching on some snacks and we gave some to Laya and Akshara too. Then, we noticed that they were so busy on the snacks that they readily agreed to pose for all the photo requests and that too with a smile! Ok, it doesn’t matter if their hand is always in or close to the mouth in all photographs.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

So, there it was, the perfect trick to getting to do all the things you want for a photograph. But, there are some finer aspects to take care, as we learnt along the way.

Always ensure that the size or the quantity of the snack you give (in case there is more than one kid) is same or at least looks the same from the viewpoint of the kids. There will definitely be an investigation as to whether the other one is bigger and if it happens to be so, you can just forget your nice-smile photographs and look forward to some war footage.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

If you have seen the eclairs ad running currently on the channels, the drummer keeps feeding the bald guys to ensure that they have their mouths full. Similarly, always ensure that there is an ample supply of snack for all the kids. On thing you can do is to strategically get an adult to keep the supply chain on , away from the view of the camera , but caught by the other camera in the second photo below.

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos

Getting Kids to smile and pose for Photos