The Baby Bump

I’ve recently been experimenting by viewing my subjects from different angles to create an alternative perspective.

In this weeks maternity session I captured the baby bump from above and it proved to be a great success. Definitely one I’d create again. With feet slightly out of focus the bump demands immediate attention.

A maternity session is all about the bump after all so why not make it the feature of the image?!

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While trying to achieve this perspective I realised a small step ladder just wasn’t going to give me the height I needed. Luckily I had a large A-frame ladder to hand. Whilst perched precariously at the top of the ladder, on one leg, carrying a heavy camera I considered investing in some crash mats for future shoots!

Lesson 2 – Use mums and dads to your advantage

Parents are a great resource on set, use them to your advantage!

I’ve noticed on numerous occasions parents so desperate for their little one to smile, laugh and giggle on demand that they’ll jump up and down, sing and make faces on the sideline. But that’s exactly where they are, the sideline. While they have the child’s attention they’re not looking at the camera. But how do you address this without discouraging them from getting involved?

At first I felt uncomfortable but if I didn’t nip it in the bud I could just render all the images useless at the end of the session. I just tried ‘That’s great. Now let’s try something different. How about….?’ And that seemed to work pretty well. You’re not criticising what they’re doing but indicating that you’ve got what you need on that shot and to move on.

It doesn’t always have to be songs and silly noises, although they are pretty effective. Shiny or sparkly toys works really well for smaller children and babies. Attach them to a make shift fishing rod so the parent can dangle it just above the lens. That way parents are able to get the baby looking in the right direction without them invading your personal space or you trip over them. A good game of peek-a-boo behind the camera works a treat……not so much for teenagers. Although it’d certainly get their attention!

Parents are also very handy on set for wiping noses/faces. Well that is a parent’s job after all, isn’t it? 😉 As a result of one photo session where this didn’t happen I spent far too much of my time editing out dribble. Save yourself some unnecessary editing time and keep those wipes handy.

If the child has numerous outfits leave the parents to be the hair, make up and wardrobe department for the whole session. Feel free to make suggestions on what you think works well and what doesn’t. This downtime will allow you to take another sip of your much needed coffee which has been cooling steadily.

If you need a reflector of some form held in position parents are great for this too. This has much better results than if you attempt to hold it and take pictures at the same time, trust me. It’s also a lot less cumbersome than having it on a stand which would just be yet another obstacle for you to hurdle and the little one to trip over.

Just consider, both you and the parents want the same thing, fantastic results. So in most cases you’ll find the parents will be willing in anyway they can to achieve this. So just ask!

Catherine Dawn Photography – About me

For as long as I can remember I’ve had a love for art and photography, however almost twenty years ago I chose accountancy as my career path. The Corporate world became my life and I just about managed to squeeze in ‘normal’ every day things like relationships and time with family and friends. I’m sad to say my passion for art took a back seat.

Since having my son in December 2013 I began to rekindle my relationship with a camera. I bought myself a DSLR and began to take advantage of my little, perfect muse! I’ve taken advantage of every opportunity to capture our life whilst learning new techniques and most importantly having lots of fun along the way.

I finally decided to see where an adventure in photography would lead. I chose to specialise in family photography because of it’s importance in capturing life and preserving those special moments for us all to cherish…..not to mention little people are so much fun to spend time with!

Let the adventure begin!