“This was a stylized child session, shot in Denver, Colorado. This shoot features Tutu Du Monde Dresses, and was planned in advance for Sophie.”
Katie’s Photography Tip:
Since stylized photography is heavily based on planning, I try to control as many elements as I can so that I am entirely prepared for every session far in advance.
Here are a few elements I take into consideration.
First, what is the mood and essence of my session? What message, feeling, or theme do I want to convey?
For this shoot, I aimed to create a whimsical and ethereal mood. I chose my location because of the lush forest-like greenery and planned all the elements of the wardrobe accordingly.
Each dress and hairpiece was preselected before the shoot. I also purchased flowers to add a touch of summer sweetness.
Even with all the planning I try to do, however, there are aspects I can’t control, such as natural light and how a child will feel on the day of her session.
For lighting, I shoot with 100% natural light. Light changes significantly depending on the time of day that you shoot, the season, and your location. I like to shoot in the later part of the day, preferably an hour before sunset (also know as the golden hour).
In case the sun is too direct or it’s hazy I have an assistant hold either a diffuser or reflector, which makes a drastic difference when shooting in less than ideal lighting conditions.
For this session, I was lucky because Sophie was amazing to work with. Friendly, beautiful and charismatic, Sophie was a dream. However, I am not always so lucky, because some children (especially ones under 4) have a very difficult time focusing on the shoot.
If you are working with a child who does not want to cooperate, I suggest using parent-approved motivators. However, if all else fails, just have fun with your client/model and capture his/her natural expressions and poses.
I like to plan every element in my shoots; nonetheless, some of my sweetest photos are natural moments that happen organically during the session.
Click here to read more tips on Lighting.
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