Basic Photo-Taking Tips
Okay, so these next couple photos this is documenting the more negative type which I still and and I'll say this I'm I'm sure my kids are confused because I'm get going because I know what's going on this's something that happened and yet I'm taking a photo and then I'm yelling at them for it so it's a little messed up in my house is on the third video so this is um hey was probably left alone this is my oldest when he was little he has probably left alone for maybe you know a minute and there was a pen all over my couch and luckily my husband is a genius and figured it out but it was something I wanted to remember and something that again his kids are going to love to see and it's something that I'll probably pull out when his own kids are getting in trouble well hey don't worry about it because this is what your father did when he was a kid and this we have a team because this is the same kid I'm include coloring he somehow got ahold of it in the pantry and all over our new carpet an...
d you home there's a lot of stress all of us I know on dh again he's in trouble but I'm taking a picture of it I will never be able to explain that and neither will my children they think it's a little demented but can I e I don't really have as a mother who was photographed things and I'm like are you kidding me and I capture it there is an element that calms me down just enough to go okay raise a part of life so we have our ups and we have our down and man I really upset and frustrated that you did this but it is part of this story and it really I have noticed maybe not yet with you I don't know but there is a very kind of like calm down I know lisa's not a like that that's what happens when you when you take the time to document absolutely cures all here's another and this is just the object because in the moment I could not take a photo of what was happening this is a lego piece that my two year old son stuck up his nose a couple weeks ago awesome and it was terrifying and we were we're seconds away from calling dad to russia's to the emergency room but when all was said and done we finally got it out he sneezed luckily I've got it out but I had to take a picture and say honey, this is what you did at two years old are you kidding me? Nine gruesome angle and that nobody wanted to see what was going on nobody wanted to wait I got through that issue so here's another probably yeah this is part of our home office that I talked about and I don't ever want my children forget about what other people think in my own family with my kids I don't ever want them to think that everything was all put together and while they can because they know better but to have the documentation of that like craziness of mess and it it tells a story of imperfection and and fun we were having fun and making messes because because they were having fun if it's story really so this next one this is going a little bit deeper this is my daughter and this is one she was upset because she was sick and couldn't go to school that morning and she just started crying and I thought I had to get this because such innocence for being upset at not being able to go to school and to think what you know adulthood will bring her there will be deeper things that I've set her butt just to capture that innocence of you know, a five year old not being able to go to school for the day was just so touching to me was that probative she was yeah it was miserable all day this miserable so this we're getting into this is going to touch on something a little bit deeper I'm I truly have in the past year and a half really grasp hold of thie idea of documenting the harder parts of life and I think it's therapeutic in a way I'm I was I was a person who you know, you know, those people that take pictures may be at a funeral or things like that and I we thought that's so dark that so I'm that's too deep for me yeah, I don't want to remember that, but I think there are things that happen in life that having the photos is therapy and it can be a healing process and a way to remember and this is a dear friend of mine she and her husband have three children with them and she lost two babies back to back and they were born they were both delivered before the twenty week mark and it was something that their family is continuingly continually dealing with and I remember I'm and it's it's interesting because both babies had the same exact birthdate on dso on that birth state every year she has decided that they will document we did a balloon release and we did they plant into lemon trees for each of the babies and I'm really trying toe not let my voice quiver. So anyways, this was the first time the first year that we did this this was two years ago and I remember when she came to me and asked me if I would document it and I thought there's no way. There's. No way. I can document something like this and get across what she wants and what she's meeting from it. And it was the most overwhelming feeling. But I remember showing up their house, and it was such a peaceful e I mean, it was just it was a beautiful time with her and her family as hard as the subject matter was and why they were doing what they were doing. I touched base with her before coming here, just to kind of get in towards what they need to her. What I could exactly share with everybody to get this point across. And she said, you know, she said it reminds us of the loss of the devastation of the sadness, but it also reminds us that they were they were here. They were a part of our family. And this is something that we do to celebrate them. So for her it's a it's, a it's, a very much a healing, a healing process. And what they did was they wrote, she had both a boy and a girl. So we had ballooned paint balloons and the wrote messages to baby jack and baby piper and it was just and these air really simple photos, I mean, these are anything amazing but because of the subject matter her daughter her youngest daughter again the youngest ones don't fully understand but it was something that she said that was funny but my friends started just to tear up at the moment I'm this was something that they shared with their children she saved everything from the hospital but never shared it with the children yet she kept it personal until this day this was the very first time her children were seen in what what she did is she made to shadow box is free to the babies and the hospital did dio handprints and footprints and you can imagine how tiny I'm how tiny these prints were but she had them done in in shadow boxes and they brought the kids into their room and this is where she shared it with them and you can see they're signing his reaction in these air these air his brother and sister that he's never met but this photo when when my friend sees it she just said it reminds me that we all feel the loss no matter what I'm and then you know just in their backyard doing the plantain and again it's not showing the whole scene but seeing her hands and planting these trees for these two babies on the mother there's a connection there that I felt as I was shooting that I'm definitely showed and then the balloon release and it was just it was it was a hard thing it was a sad thing, but it was such a beautiful thing as well and I feel I feel bad I have everybody tearing up I'm so sorry guys, but again it's it's to show that life is hard sometimes and it's still part of your story and for stephanie, my friend, this is something that's part of her story and we do this every year and I'm so honored that I get to do something like that every year and just to keep that in mind that it doesn't have to be dark, it doesn't have to be dark, but it is part of the story and we do one document that there's a lot to celebrate about certain moments. You know this is obviously a very difficult thing a lot of us are just devastated by the you thought or because we've experienced loss most people have and yet like he said it's part of the story but it's also it's not just the story of loss it's a story of honoring that person or the people and that is such a parton thing to document right and for their children I think teo, you know their name may not be photos of the babies for them to look at, but they have these photos to remember that there are two other people a part of their family that just aren't there with them, but I think for their children it's a big it's a big thing for for stephanie and her husband to go through and make sure is documented so let's let's lighten it up just a little bit. I'm so this is these next couple photos are actually from my iphone and I want to show I'm that you don't have to have the dfl are it really doesn't have to be extreme. This is a portrait of my youngest she's almost six months, but this is one of my most favorite black and white portrait ever, and it was done on my iphone. I mean it's incredible to me, the tools that we have available at our fingertips. So keep that in mind that just because it's a phone, it doesn't mean anything, it can still do what you needed to just say arizona sunset I love getting those I'm this one was my daughter, whether head out the car and again it's what I had available so I took it but a mobile, you know, an iphone photograph it's, it's, gorgeous and some of these I have framed this is just us in southern california on the beach and then this one I love it's when we brought my daughter home this summer and my son is just I think that's one of my favorites have yours I haven't seen this one really that way and it's just and I didn't meet him looking at me I didn't need to see the baby's face it's that relationship that I'm getting and we'll touch more on that I have a perfect visual of when we talked about you don't have tio have everybody pose or know that the cameras there just document what's happening I'm so that's a good example we're going toe I'm touched really quick on selfies it's what the cool kids call it self portrait I'm rachael kids in here carol yeah I've of course I'm one thing I have really tried to I still am a bear about it but in my own home I really have tried tio let go of control and put myself in front of camera because I know those few portrait I have my own mother are so amazingly special and I think it's important for us people who are natural documentary airs in our lives and in our family's lives to get ourselves on the other hand camera every now and then I think it's really important it is this is one just that my husband snapped for me onda geun I think unwashed hair for a couple days and one is fighting with the other but it's that's that's our life so here's just you know, these are just some that I've taken with my iphone here and there and for me when my kids see this, it just kind of tells my story a little bit and I don't like tio ever get heavily into it, but I think throwing these you know, here and there for my children is really great and I don't I'm not going to explain each one but just didn't hear some of becky's well and you asked me, hey, hey, can you see it gets himself is and I'm like, okay, all right, so I actually was going through what I'm like all right, I dig a little bit I don't take a and that's not good or about that's just so I don't have a ton of those and so I went back many months actually just to pull together a handful, but my favorite is the one of in the bottom left hand corner of media in cruz glasses that are upside down absolutely yeah seems awkward, I think not for everybody, not for a younger crowd but for no like it feels a little awkward, but I agree for my mom and my dad to have done this a little bit more so yeah, I love the idea of making sure that we capture even just a little bit once in a while, someone in a grocery store middle at the top that's like that's the grocery store way had finished date night we had to stop by the grocery store because that's super romantic and grab a few things and he was ahead of me and iconic glimpse of myself in the mirror is that about the produce produce and I'm like my hair still done well look at that eye makeup so I'm so you know, it just kind of a silly so whether they're supposed to be flattering or not we did a shoot recently carrionite together and I had a makeup artist and while she's talented in hair and makeup came and did me up you know, maybe look pretty and before she got started I had really broken out like really became a teenager all over again and so I took a before picture I have not been brave enough to show this on social media and I'm still getting to know I'll get teo majorly dramatic you saw it, right? Yeah, I throw now and so I actually did a split screen and took a picture of my before I stood in the bathroom where with the lighting was really good and I didn't after when the makeup was done and then I split it down the middle, the show and it was dramatic, so I think when he goes a little too big to share that I don't know so did you have something that you guys were sharing your way? Okay, let's get into and these are just some simple ideas I didn't want to make it overwhelming we're talking to an audience who have dslr sze who have a point and shoot who have just an iphone camera and all of them will do the trick, so we're going to talk about the easiest ones I'm so as faras angles when it comes to children and I'm talking because I have children I know a lot of people may not that air watching I'm but when you're documenting childhood I feel like there's two angles from above really has um innocents to it and it's a vulnerability that as a mother I'm this is this is how I view them so this was christmas morning this was all three and again it's not a perfect photo it's grainy and I almost cut off part of the baby's head as faras cropping but looking down on them and then looking up at me is just that's childhood to me and that's going to be something that they touched they really connect with later. Now this is full front, this is another angle that I feel allows them to have ownership of a photograph as a child I feel like when you get down on their level it's so easy and every day just to kind of where you're standing just to snap just a snap because of easy and it's quick but when you get down on their level it's really storytelling for them and I think it gives them ownership of the photo and here's some I tried to pull examples from the same set up so this is my two year old and this is an example from above so he's looking up in an airplane and again his fingers cut off it's not a perfect photo but to me as a mother this is how I see him and then here's a photo of him looking straight at me this is more childhood for him so I think you guys know how she got down can you see that? Because sometimes it might be difficult right to see that you're actually you were squatting? Yes. Yeah, maybe it his eye level so I really try and document both ways as faras my own family photography here's another example this is my son at halloween several years ago looking down at him very innocent to me and then here he is he still has the same infant face but he's owning the photograph more I'm down in the level you can see him pulling his sister in the wagon behind him on dh it's just more telling for them so I think that's something to remember and here is this is just a straight on eye level photograph for my daughter this was her birthday portrait so it's just something to just keep in mind that angles really do change the story and t maybe put yourself more physically interactive with what you're doing and I think it's really easy we're on the go, we're busy where you know, doing things fastest to click, but if you just take a minute, get down, change your angle, change the story, it really does a lot like the takeaway really with us point is to experiment really, because a lot of us do take that just kind of easy shot from wherever we're standing, but if you take the time to just experiment, even if it's just in one date and a half overtime but you're going to see the difference between this angle and this angle, our little angle, you know, just experiment and play and don't feel like you have to become a professional photographer in that effort. Absolutely ok, so this is one this is no editing on my iphone. I really wanted to show you guys like this is what we see every day this is what we're all in, well, some of us little ones, so this is one that I took just to show lighting, for example, so you can see the lighting is behind us there's a sliding door so when I'm shooting with the lighting subject with the lighting source behind it's going to give me a darker photo because it's exposing tio supplement so this is a little dark to me and this is probably what we all see sometimes now if I just switch sides it's much more visually pleasing I think that's well let's exactly and all I did was changed where I wass so again it doesn't have to be you know, these these huge set ups of equipment I mean this was an iphone and this I mean this really isn't a fabulous photo it's a really good example though, but straight really well and if I could if I wasn't there when she captured this moment but I can imagine that you were very specifically right at the sliding glass doors absolutely has and that's kind of big yellow but a little bit more specific but nontechnical is you want to stand more where the lights coming from because right? I mean, I always intentionally sometimes you want the different effects when light comes around you but for this shot and the reason it looks so much more improved is because his hair was standing where the light was coming from and that way the light was going on to our subjects, not from behind I think that's something to keep in mind whoever you're photographing if it's indoors I don't think that you have to have the flash on flash photos are very harsh half the time and not very flattering sometimes they are way last night a lot that I'm sure the exhaustion, but it took away all of the angles I know our skin looks so much better, but indoors, natural light is usually going to be the most flattering, so just to just to remember where your light sources are and to kind of in a way memorize your home so that when you are documenting family members or people in your life, you know, keep in mind where the light is now, luckily with kids, well, with kids, it's not I can't pick them up and move them to the best light it's not gonna happen, but luckily they were near the light, so I'm working with your kids and again, this goes back to what we're talking about, no fighting I this was years ago, I had my son on my bed and he obviously did not want tio take pictures for me, which was fine and this is what came out of it, but I love this photo on and we didn't have to fight about it, he just he didn't want to look at me, so he put the covers over his head and I just said I forget what I told him that I said something and he just gave me a thumbs up and it was like, perfect like I that's all I need is a little hint of personality and then ok, so this is the same son I think this goes to show any live with a photographer, he actually had the stomach still to this day and no wonder the kid has to get over his head horrible mother that I am, but I just wanted he was hanging out on my bed, the light was beautiful, I just wanted to get him, but he didn't want photos taken so again blanket over the head and he obviously has a thing for that, but instead of fighting about it when you're working with little ones, all I said was peekaboo and this is what I got, so it was like it wasn't my doing, but it was just my interaction with him and again going back to the relationship, it was what I got out of him and it was perfect it didn't you know, it was that's what I needed. Now this is an example. What we're talking about earlier is you don't have to make everybody aware that there's a camera in their face these are my grand parents taking out their birthday years ago, we have since lost my grandfather, but this picture tells so much of his relationship with my grandmother and the way he always looked at her and how much he honored her and respected her. And it was he didn't know I was taking a picture. They were laughing about something, and I just quickly put it up, took it. But these are the photos that that give those relationships a visual to them. So keep that in mind that it doesn't have to be everybody looking at the camera on dh, sometimes it's better off that way, he's. With a lot of the shows that you want, children see, you know, a picture like this of their grand parents, absolutely going to mean even more means. I don't know them personally different parents, but I I love them more just from seeing this picture than I would if I saw a nice portrait of the two of them, right race, it's more telling, all it's, more telling, absolutely.