Photo courtesy of Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

How to take great photos of kids: 5 tips from Jon and Rach Photography, Arlington, WA

 

Around the holidays or any time of year, capturing memories by taking pictures of my kids is one of my favorite things to do, but I’m often less than satisfied with my photos. I use my phone, I use my point and shoot camera, and I even use my DSLR. I like some of my pictures most of the time.

If you’re like me, maybe you’ve wondered if there’s a magic trick or two to get those beautiful professional portraits you see of kids and families? I asked my friend Jon Anderson of Jon and Rach Photography in Arlington, Washington, if he could share some tips on how to take great photos of kids with any camera. Jon is a fun dad to three little girls, and with his lovely wife Rachel he’s made magic for families, grads, and brides with his beautiful photographs and easy, natural manner.

Jon recently took some photos of my twins. I’m still speechless — they’re wonderful and I’ll treasure them always. Here’s more from Jon about how you can take great photos of your kids, too.

(All photos courtesy of Jon Anderson.)

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My father was a photographer. To this day I enjoy going home and pulling out albums and reminiscing on each special memory captured of my childhood.  Being a photographer myself,  I too am seeking to give this same gift to my children so that they can relive these fleeting moments.

I’m frequently asked for tips on taking children’s pictures. Here are five simple tips that will get you on your way to capturing beautiful, priceless moments of your ever-growing bundles of joy!  Taking the time to go out with your children (and your camera!) will be moments that you will cherish forever.

Photo courtesy of  Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

1. Look for the light. Use it. Winter is upon us and as such, daylight is limited, if it appears at all. When you see the light, take your kids out in it. Sunlight this time of year, although rare, is so amazing when it does show it’s face! Light will also help your camera focus. A camera looks for contrasting elements when focusing.

Photo courtesy of Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

2. Get down to their level. Not just literally (that too) but more importantly relate to them, read their character. e.g. say goofy things or act goofy, if that fits their character.

Photo courtesy of  Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

3. Get rid of the “cheese” smile. Find their natural smile (see tip 2). The classic “cheese” smile is so unnatural and everyone can tell it’s forced!

Photo courtesy of Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

4. Relax. Kids relax when their parents relax. Set aside a specific time that is dedicated to you and your children. Turn off your phone!

Photo courtesy of  Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

5. Leave their element. Take your kids somewhere they haven’t been, and look for the light.  You’ll be surprised how much fun you can have.  It’s always exciting after an outing to come home and sit down together and look through all of the memories that we made that day.

 

Photo courtesy of  Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.comJon Anderson is a  wedding and portrait photographer based out of Arlington, Washington, serving the greater Snohomish County area.  He can be found at www.jonandrach.com

 

 

 

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Thank you, Jon!

Jon’s editorial work makes some of my magazine articles look gorgeous, but here’s one of my very favorite Jon Anderson photos, a picture he took of my son at a nearby park. As a mom, I love photos of my kids that capture who they really are  —  this is my happy little boy, enjoying being outside.

Photo by Jon Anderson Photography. Copyrighted material, all rights reserved. Viewed on twin-mom.com

 

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twin-mom.com Linda Jenkinstwin-mom.com is a blog about family life and travels in the Pacific Northwest, with some wish list finds just for moms, too. Follow Linda and her busy family as they enjoy close-to-home and accessible family fun.

Former attorney Linda Jenkins is a Pacific Northwest travel, food & wine, and lifestyle writer. Her work has appeared in magazines and newspapers including 425 Magazine, South Sound Magazine, NWLawyer, The Seattle Times, and The Tacoma News Tribune. Read more…

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  • http://joycelansky.blogspot.com/ Joyce

    These are great tips. I wonder if they’ll still work on my adult children.

    http://joycelansky.blogspot.com/2013/12/wordless-wednesday-shower.html

    • http://www.twin-mom.com/ Linda @ twin-mom.com

      Sure! Especially the one about relaxing. :)

  • Posh on a Budget
    • http://www.twin-mom.com/ Linda @ twin-mom.com

      Thank you! Jon does great photos.

  • TaMara

    These are great tips! My children have some of the worst “cheese” smiles so I’m constantly trying to catch more natural ones.

    • http://www.twin-mom.com/ Linda @ twin-mom.com

      Sometimes it’s all cheese around here, too. :)

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  • Clare Swindlehurst

    One of my goals for 2014 is to take better pictures of my kids so this advice is perfect. Off to share it with others right away :)