10 Tips for Photographing Moms and Their Kids

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Creating gorgeous photographs of moms with their kids can be a daunting task. But with a little planning, responding well to the family dynamic, and paying attention to whether or not you’re selecting flattering angles you can create lovely portraits that they’ll treasure for years.

Women can be harsh critics of themselves, so it’s well worth spending some time thinking about how to make moms happy with their portraits. Both in terms of helping moms relax beforehand and on the day, and paying attention to choosing flattering angles as you photograph them. I’ve learned lots through my experience over the years – here are 10 tips to help you photograph moms.

Clothing

Suggest avoiding sleeveless tops so underarms aren’t exposed, as well as avoiding graphics on clothing so that the focus is on faces and not on clothing. For new moms, a loose t-shirt or a shirt is more flattering than tightly fitted breastfeeding tops.

Clothing 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Makeup

Here you can suggest using a face powder to minimize shine, an under eye concealer to minimize shadows, and a pale eye shadow to brighten the face.

Relaxing Mom

Spend some time chatting to Mom before you meet her, and before you start photographing. The more relaxed she feels, the better your photographs of her will be.

Find flattering angles

If you’re providing any posing guidance, suggest Mom leans her weight on her back foot for the most flattering angle. Suggest she thinks about bringing her forehead in space to minimize any double chins – Peter Hurley has a great video demonstrating this technique (see below). The best place to hold a toddler is generally on Mom’s hip, rather than holding them squashed across or into her body.

Angles for new moms

Be careful that the weight of their baby isn’t creating bulges, as new moms are often sensitive about remaining baby weight and won’t want it emphasized. Holding the baby in the crook of their arm works well to minimize this. Or if Mom is very conscious of baby weight, have Dad hold the baby and encourage Mom to snuggle in from behind, bringing her arm round Dad’s so everyone’s involved.

Another good option is to have Mom lie on her side, near her baby. This brings her head nice and close to the baby for an intimate portrait, and is also a flattering angle for those conscious of baby weight.

New mums - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Games and laughter

Find out which games the children are particularly enjoying at the Moment, and have Mom instigate those games. Peek-a-boo, spinning on the spot, aeroplanes, lifting babies up in the air (safely!) and tickles are surefire hits for some lovely giggles.

Games - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Games air - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Cuddles and kisses

This is one of the most highly prized photographs for moms, so encourage the children to give Mom a lovely cuddle. If they’re not feeling like dispensing kisses on demand, ask them if they know how to kiss Mom’s nose. Often the challenge of proving they can will get the kids to oblige!

With newborns, encourage Mom to place a gentle kiss on the newborn’s face – you may need to point to the spot that you’ll be able to see in shot.

Newborn kiss - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

On the move

moms will want to remember the feeling of holding a little hand in theirs. So remember to photograph moms walking with their children, hand in hand. Having Mom run towards the camera with her children can also be a great way of helping more camera shy mothers to relax and have fun.

On the move - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Quiet moments

Keep an eye out for the tender moments between moms and their children – these are very emotive and can be very powerful photographs for mothers. Capturing the strength of that bond is such a privilege, and the gentle oments of calming a baby or young child can be a great opportunity to do just that.

Quiet moments - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Shy moms

For shy moms, try to incorporate details such as their arms holding the baby – you don’t need a face-on portrait if it makes her feel uncomfortable. Having these kind of details will mean a lot to the baby when he/she is grown up, to see themselves lying in their mother’s arms.

And if their mom is camera shy, all the more reason to make sure the child gets some photographs with Mom in shot!

Arms - 10 Tips for Photographing moms and Their Kids

Conclusion

For one reason or another, it so often ends up being the mother who takes snaps at home and on holidays – with the unfortunate result that moms are often absent from most home photographs.

Making sure to incorporate beautiful photographs of Mom with her kids is a lovely gift to level the playing field here and make sure that Mom features in their photo albums too!

Do you have any other tips for photos of moms with their kids? Please share them and your images of moms and kids below.

Read more from our Tips & Tutorials category

Louise Downham

has photographed 1000+ babies and children to date, her photographs have been exhibited internationally and published in national magazines. She runs an award-winning family portrait business, Louise Rose Photography. You can also follow her on Instagram.

  • Bata Shoe Co. BD Ltd

    Kids are angel, they are perfect for photography with their mom. This is really nice tips to take a picture. Every mom love their toddler, they are sweet. Need best trampoline for their toddler to .

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  • Skye M

    My Mum is very very camera shy. I was 28 when I did a first year photography course. We had to work in the studio as one half of the course. Sadly this caused me to have seizures due to my epilepsy & my tutor didn’t bother to help me learn in the end. As part of my topic I decided to photograph my disabled daughter, my Mum (how do I do that moment?) & my youngest sister who was 17 at the time. My daughter was a star despite having to be very patient with her responses. She was 10years old at the time. Mum backed out that morning, so it was my sister that I had to focus on. She had done a bit of studio work so helped me set up some lighting. We decided to pack Mum a nice dress & make up. I packed the nerf guns that were my nieces & nephews except for a single shot one that was my daughters. She kept it under the pillow so we knew bringing it would make her smile & laugh. I got some lovely photos of my sister who changed outfits from prom to everyday. She even did a spontaneous crazy jump in 5he air in her prom dress wearing her prized Vans she had saved up for. It was the nudge that Mum needed. She saw my sister having so much fun that she said “I wish I’d worn my dress & make up after all. She’s having so much fun!” We whipped out her stuff & she burst out laughing. After getting sorted, I started Mum & my sister off facing each other & just having a play with the Nerf guns. This relaxed Mum a lot. After that she realised it was just us. No one else was around to watch & she started to feel more confident. I got some beautiful shots of her in different poses. Always relaxed & just as wanted to be. There was no catwalk style poses. She did what she wanted & how she felt comfortable. I worked from there with my sister helping with the lighting. I would recommend from story, is if you have a Mum or Dad that is camera shy, get them to bring in items from home, games, toys, their pet, anything that will help them to relax. Don’t throw them straight in the deep end. Let them watch the others have some fun & hopefully it will encourage them to want to join in the fun. Always recommend that they bring something they feel comfortable with, or items of clothing they feel comfortable in, their make up (if they don’t like photos of themselves without it), even if they say they won’t be involved, bring it just in case they change their mind. Better to bring it & not need it, than not having it & regretting not bringing it. That’s my story, my advice, I hope it helps. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4bbb71272f7841e35403133cd30c40f2afe4f3d3ab2009599519b7ad66d6704b.jpg

  • Ethel

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    On tuesday I got a great New Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $11752 this last four weeks..with-out any doubt it’s the most-comfortable job I have ever done .. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
    !da222d:
    ??
    ??;?? http://GoogleDailyLifeUpdateWorkFromHome/more/cash ????????????????????????????????????????????????????:::::!da222luuu

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