Keeping Mom in the Picture
If you're like most moms, you're the unofficial family photographer—which means, in most photos, your face is nowhere to be found. Here are 9 ways to make sure your presence is felt as much in your photos as it is in your children's lives.
The Art of the Self-Portrait
Stretch out those arms and learn the art of the self portrait. Sure, you might look like a tourist in your own home, but at least you’re represented. A wide angle lens works best for these shots. My kids are used to climbing in my lap and crouching down to fit into a great self portrait.
Say hello to your feet. A simple readjustment of the camera frame to include your feet suddenly adds a whole new feeling to your photos. Instead of an individual shot of your baby, you’ve captured a mother-and-child moment. Plus, years later you can laugh at how much shoe styles have changed.
Having a sweet moment with your baby and there’s no one there to capture it? Find a mirror. I love the creativity behind capturing a great mirror shot (look for beautiful, ornate mirrors), and babies will naturally smile when they see their reflection.
Think Up, Not Out
Self portraits don’t always have to mean you stretch your arms out in front of you. Try stretching them above you to capture a different perspective. While this photo doesn’t include my face, it still captures a great mama moment out orange-picking with my girls.
Use Your Friends
Make pacts with your friends to capture each other when you’re gathering for play dates. If I see a friend taking pictures of her child, I try to remember to steal her camera and take some photos of them together. “Pretend I’m not here,” is a great way to get good candid shots.
Call on Dad
Daddies take good pictures too. My husband loves the moments I’ve captured and framed of him and our children and, in return, he understands how much I appreciate captured mama moments. Pass the camera to your husband from time to time, and teach him a few basic camera settings.
The Old Self-Timer & Tripod Trick
While we don’t lug our tri-pod around everywhere we go, we make sure to bring it on vacations and to use it during the holidays when it’s important to capture the entire family.
The Kindness of Strangers
Strangers are usually more than happy to take a quick photo, so don’t be afraid to ask. When handing my camera off to a stranger, I usually put it into Av Mode, set the ISO and instruct them where to focus. And ask for 3-4 shots to ensure one turns out.
The Big Picture
Your presence in photos is important. Years later, your children will love looking at the moments you shared with them when they were little. Make efforts to appear in those family photos. And just think—what will their wedding slideshow look like someday without memories of mom?
Kelle Hampton is a mom, photographer, blogger, and author who lives in sunny Florida. To learn more about her, visit Enjoying the Small Things.
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