Based in Howard County, Maryland, Christina Tundo Photography serves all the definitions of family within the DMV area, preserving the authentic moments, both big and small, that you want to hold onto forever.
After being a Maryland family photographer for several years now, I’ve got some tips to help make your child more comfortable for family portraits. Oftentimes, parents are worried about how their kids or toddlers will handle being in front of the camera. I get it – it can be a lot to have a stranger in your face with a camera trying to get you to smile. I’ve got some tips to help you prep your little one for the camera, and I’ll also share some of the ways I work to make sure they’re comfortable with me before we even start working.
I recommend something neutral colored if you’re going to bring a lovey or stuffed animal. This is also a precious image to have because it documents what was their comfort item. I have no problem at all incorporating it into your images if it helps them feel more comfortable.
Depending where your session is, it can be a different environment than your little one might be used to. Try to arrive a few minutes early to let them adjust and feel more comfortable with the space. This is especially good for kids with sensory overload.
By introducing me before the session, your little one is more likely to recognize me and feel more comfortable. This is more appropriate for pre-school/early elementary aged kids but can still be useful for the whole family. By simply letting them know they’re having photos done in the first place, a lot of anxiety can be reduced.
Those ideas are great to help you prepare your family for your photo session.
For in-home sessions, I’ll ask your little ones to give me a tour of the house before we even really get started. For outdoor sessions, I will explore with them and talk before picking up the camera. This helps create a more meaningful connection before I try to put my camera in their face.
For every sessions my clients complete a questionnaire. I ask about things they love so that I can create experiences centered around them. This might include playing their favorite songs or simply talking about the topics they enjoy.
I give a lot of prompts and directions to kiddos and parents… and, sometimes it back-fires. That is where I suggest a few things for parents to do and take a step back from everyone. I encourage parents to be playful or even snuggly, depending on their mood. I might even throw on a longer focal length lens and let you do your own thing. Sometimes me stepping back can be the best thing to help your little one relax and recenter.
At the end of the day, your comfort – and the comfort of your little ones – truly matters to me. I don’t want anyone to feel afraid or worried during the session. If anyone’s uncomfortable, it will show. I’ve been a photographer for years and I truly love these tips to help little ones feel comfortable and relax for their portraits. No matter what happens, we’ll capture portraits that you’ll love and that will capture where your family is right now in their journey – and I can’t wait!