Parents love to show off a new addition to their family but don’t want to exclude older children in the process. Getting multiple children to cooperate for a photo shoot, however, can be quite the challenge. When one child cooperates, another tends to act up. Toddlers don’t appreciate being asked to sit or stand still and may run around the studio, or an older child may pout because they have to wear coordinating outfits with their siblings.
Babies, however, remain the most unpredictable element in the shoot, as parents can never know what their little one will do. To prevent issues, parents should speak with the photographer and get a better idea of what to expect when it comes to sibling photography.
What to Expect
Parents should respect the individuality of each child and let them be themselves during the newborn and sibling photoshoot. Parents of toddlers know their children and how they act in different situations, so they should walk into the shoot prepared for similar behavior. A toddler isn’t going to change the way they act simply because they are in a new place. When the parent tries to get them to behave in a way that is not natural to them, they will act up.
The key to a successful shoot lies in providing the children with the freedom to be who they are while enforcing any limits in the studio. For example, allow the child to explore the studio while staying right with them so they don’t hurt anything. Ask the photographer for permission to do so first, but many photographers allow this, as they know it helps to make the child feel comfortable before they take any pictures.
See if the photographer will spend a few minutes with the older kids so they can get to know each other better. If the child will allow it, the photographer may want to hold them for a few minutes. Parents need to be open to new ideas also rather than walking into the studio with images already in their head. Often, it is the candid shots that parents love because these shots allow the personality of each child to shine through.
Sibling Poses to Consider
When capturing pictures of a newborn with an older sibling, photographers often choose to have the newborn wrapped up in a blanket and laying on their back. The older child can then hold the baby with ease, and pillows are placed under the newborn’s head to support it. However, the parent should be right there just out of the camera’s range for safety reasons.
Some children cooperate with this type of newborn sibling photography, but not all do. When this is the case, situate the older siblings on a rug or blanket on the floor. Play with them to get them to relax, and then lay the newborn next to them. Flexibility remains key to a successful photoshoot when young children are involved.
If the parents agree, have the older siblings make funny faces at the baby. The photographer may capture the perfect shot when the older child is amused and the baby is resting quietly. Another option involves taking a photo from behind, such as when the older sibling is holding the baby and looking down on them. This memory tends to become one that the parents will treasure in the coming years.
Don’t overlook a silhouette when capturing pictures of young children. However, this type of photo works best when the image is captured outdoors. If this is an option that you wish to be considered, schedule the shoot at twilight.
Finally, consider having the older sibling tell the baby a secret that no one else in the room can hear. This is another image parents usually love because it shows their children interacting as siblings. The older child is sharing their wisdom with the baby.
Parents understand their children won’t always cooperate. If one or more siblings refuse to take part in the photoshoot, it might be best to try again another day. Discuss this possibility with the photographer when scheduling the shoot. Sibling photographers deal with countless families each year and are often willing to do what is necessary to get a great shot. It never hurts to ask.
About Megan Kime Photography:
My career in the Raleigh/Triangle area began approximately ten years ago when I started capturing images of babies, families, weddings, and pets. I love all of the photos I have taken because they allow me to capture the unique personality of each subject. Regardless of what I am asked to photograph, I do what is necessary to ensure the photos exceed your expectations by providing high-quality products with style in a professional manner.